Medicating Dogs with Arthritis: Eastern and Western Perspectives

In Chinese medicine, clinical signs of illness are linked to an imbalance with specific organ meridian. For instance, when your pet has arthritis, this translates to an imbalance in the kidney meridian. So what? Well let’s think about this from both the western and eastern perspectives. Wait until this “Ahaa” light goes off…. it’s mind blowing!

Let’s take the arthritic pet…
Eastern perspective: The arthritic pet has an imbalance in the kidney meridian. That means there is an insult to the kidneys. I can say this with 3,500 years of certainty. Your arthritic pet has insulted kidneys. “No way, my pet has perfect bloodwork,” you say. “My vet says his kidney values are fine!”
That’s because organ damage must be 75% or greater to show up on bloodwork. Trust me, your arthritic pet has a kidney problem.

Western perspective: A pet hurts from arthritis. We place the pet on oral medications to make that pain disappear. Important? Yes… but what did we just learn about arthritis from the eastern side? It’s a problem with the kidneys.

When you place an arthritic pet (imbalanced kidney meridian) on oral medications like NSAIDs, you are asking the kidneys to now deal with a daily drug…. which further insults the kidneys. Tick, tick, tick, tick, boom!

You see the ticking time bomb here? Start your pet on western medication to help his pain, but start acupuncture and herbs as soon as possible. NSAIDs only reduce inflammation. Acupuncture can actually move the stagnation and heal the kidney meridian. Chinese herbs can control the pain naturally and further support the kidneys.

When you ONLY throw western medicine to mask symptoms, it doesn’t heal anything and you are setting your pet up for problems. When you know better, you do better. Together we can do better!

Dr. Ashley Geoghegan

Dr. Ashley Geoghegan, known affectionately as Dr. G, has spent a lifetime devoted to animal care. Dr. G graduated from the LSU School of Veterinary Medicine and served in the U.S. Army as a veterinary officer. At VetNaturally™, she practices Integrative Medicine, which is a combination of Traditional Chinese Veterinary medicine (TCVM) , canine rehabilitation and conventional Western medicine.