*This article has been derived from the transcript of my interview on The Animal Intuitive Channel, with Amy Snow, a worldwide pioneer in animal acupressure. Amy returns to the show as a guest again from Tallgrass Animal Acupressure Resources.
Assess & Support Your Pets’ Health -Tallgrass Animal Acupressure Resources! Ep 132
I want to welcome Amy Snow from Tallgrass Animal Acupressure Resources to the Animal Intuitive Channel. Amy has prepared a special mini-class for us! Here, we talk about animal communication and natural pet care. And I am a professional animal communicator, which means on this show, we help pet parents and students learn how to help animals with whatever’s going on with them.
After this, I encourage you to binge and go to those playlists for interviews with Amy and Nancy Zidonis, co-owner of Tallgrass Animal Acupressure Resources. You can learn even more about animal acupressure and traditional Chinese medicine.
Amy, please tell people a little about Tallgrass Animal Acupressure Resources. When did it get started, and how did this all come about?
Amy: Nancy Zidonis actually founded Tallgrass. About 30, 35 years ago, back when everybody looked at her very quizzically and didn’t really have any idea what she was talking about. Why would you do that horse or dog or cat?
Why would you try to use your hands at all? Just go to the vet. So times have changed, thank goodness, over the past, and I came along about 25 years ago. Nancy had already written some excellent handbooks. So it was starting. The idea that she had was, it’s, she could be a practitioner, but the real thing they wanted, she wanted was to make sure that it got out to the regular folks who had animals and could help their own animals.
Chinese medicine & acupressure assessment works with animal communication
And then, we built a base of practitioners and changed some of the books to what they are now. But that’s been over a 25-year time, and it’s been a fascinating, challenging journey for me. And we seem to keep going. One way or another, wonderful. Today we talk about assessment because the Chinese medicine approach can be used with massage, it can be used with intuition, it can be used with anything, communication.
And the assessment is key to any acupressure massage hands-on activity because you want to have if you’re gonna take the time to give an animal and have them give you their time, you want to make it as effective as possible, and you have to start somewhere.
The way you start is understanding what’s going on with the animals. In Chinese medicine, we look at the emotional as well as the physical, and frankly, it’s equal.
What’s housed in the heart is revealed in the eyes.
The skin, bones, ligaments, and tendons are as important as how the animal, the animal’s spirit, is functioning. And if they’re angry, if they’re sad, depressed, animals go through a lot. You can look at the eyes of an animal and be pretty clear because there is a wonderful Chinese statement that is what’s housed in the heart is revealed in the eyes.
And revealing it in the eyes means we’re seeing the spirit of the animal there. And in Chinese medicine, it’s known as the Shen. So we wanna arrive at an effective acupressure massage session. And the only way we can do this is really understanding the physical condition, as well as the emotional. Selecting acupressure points for the session.
The Four Examinations
We’re going to be talking about a little later of how we effectively get to that point of selecting the points to work with. The animal will benefit from it only if we’ve done a good job of assessing what’s going on because the points themselves have functions, and they support the animals entirety for what we call a harmonious flow of Chi.
So even during the session, we continue to assess because that’s what we want to know; how is the animal experiencing the actual session? So an assessment goes through the whole process.
The tool that’s used in Chinese medicine is called the four examinations. They didn’t have the high-tech things that we have now, which are incredibly useful, especially since I am a firm believer in integrative medicine. You’re looking at a person who wouldn’t be here without it. So it’s part of the picture.
And the four exams rely on keen senses. Being able to see, being able to observe, being able to really understand what’s going on with the animal. I think we all know that if the animal’s eyes are dull and they look like they’ve been in a shelter for too long.
And so there are specific acupoints, believe it or not, that help them refresh their spirit. So using your own senses, you’re going to be observing, smelling, and we’re going to go through the four exams together. What the Chinese are most interested in is the functioning within the environment.
There is how is the animal coping, with the food they’re eating, with the people they’re living with the sport they’re doing. There are many examples of that for horse people. You get going thinking the horse should be a dressage horse. Lo and behold, it’s a hunter jumper,
So when we started, by the way, we did start with horses, and so a lot of our examples and thoughts go that way. But I love working with dogs and cats, and you see in that picture, actually my two past animals, that was Oak and Oscar, in the picture. So we’re looking at how is this animal functioning, and whatever the reason they’re doing that is because we can see on the exterior of the dog’s or horse’s or cat’s body. So what is going on internally, it presents externally.
So say, an example very quickly would be, say, there was liver malfunction. We’d look at the sclera of the eyes, and we’d see yellow. We then know we need to work with liver and clear toxins, clear whatever’s going on. So another example is the dog has the sniffles, and a little nose is dripping.
We know we have to deal with the lung. So that is what it means. That what’s going on internally can manifest externally. In Chinese medicine, that is known as the law of integrity because the body is one whole. It’s not disparate. You don’t just have a liver sitting over there because if a liver is not functioning, the whole body is compromised.
#1 – Observation
So that is what was called the law of integrity. Next. Okay, here is where we start observing. Now that’s quite a dog. And what would you say that dog looks like? Is that a healthy dog? Looks pretty healthy to me. What else would you say about that dog? He looks like he has a lot of energy and focus too.
Anne: Shiny coat or good full coat. I guess you can’t really totally tell cause he’s wet, but he looks like a good, thick, full coat. Good, he has good musculature. He’s jumping up strong, healthy. Yep. Those are all the good things of a well-balanced, harmonious flow of Chi.
Amy: That’s what you’re looking at is this dog is vital, and has a lot of good, healthy vitality. So here’s when you’re looking, doing your observations. The next slide will tell you some of the items that we look at with our keen senses. He has joy in his movement. Yes, the focus is so beautiful in this animal. I agree.
Amy: Now, here’s another little cutie face. Could be a little more tentative, I’d say, when you look at that dog. So we’re looking at the general attitude, and by that we combine general attitude with confirmation. If the dog walks slinking into the room with his head down and not looking up and slow, then the general attitude and confirmation at that point, things are not quite right.
Skin and coat
So then there’s skin and coat. That is a big telltale (sign), especially with cats and dogs. If the skin is dry and flaky from a Chinese medicine point of view, not enough moisture and richness and health, and nutrients are getting to the surface of the skin. With the coat, we have to be a little careful on that because it also depends on the breeds.
If you’re thinking of a Labrador, you want it to be a nice, softer, smooth coat. If you think of a terrier, you might have a more dry and rugged coat if you’re thinking of a Chesapeake Bay retriever, for instance. So you do have to consider the breed. If they’re mixes, you want to get an idea of what they are.
We have a Mexican Street dog named Hugo. And Hugo is a terrier of many mixes, and he has a very rough, dry coat, basically. So you do need to think that through? How is the muscle tone? What’s the conditioning of the animal? Is it athletic, or is it a couch potato? And you have to know later on in the next part of it, observation, you need to gain even more information.
Discharges-eyes, ears, nose, any discharges from anywhere on the body. Are there any open sores, or any inflammation or swellings, or cold places? So you’re looking at this animal, very focused. You’ve got to focus on this individual animal and then do some kind of gate analysis, some sort of walk the animal out, trot the animal back.
How balanced does it look and that’s the beginning of taking a real good look at the animal. That’s the very beginning of the assessment. We often say, when we’re teaching, put your arms behind your back, your hands behind your back, and just look. Because you see it, you do. The human being sees a lot. We do.
We do, and we should use that as a very strong tool, and that’s what the four examinations are about. It is a tool.
# 2 Listening and Smelling
The next is sounds and smells. We know what congested breathing sounds like. We know what dry raspy breathing sounds like. We know when an animal is howling and unhappy and left alone. Perhaps one of the questions you do end up asking an owner, if you’re working on them as a practitioner, is how do they handle being alone?
Mel (viewer) asks about lipomas. You’re gonna see lipomas and we can talk about them. That’s good. It’s worth talking about when we get done with this because often older animals, which is what we’re gonna focus on in the case study, often have lipomas because the metabolism, water metabolism in the body, and the functioning of the body has slowed up and creates these fatty tissue tumors.
And that’s what a lipoma is, and that’s stagnation. In Chinese medicine terms, it’s considered a stagnation of body fluids and fats, obviously.
If you smell a punget smell:
- Where’s it coming from?
- Is it coming from the intestine
- or is it coming from the mouth?
- Is it bad teeth?
That’s worth knowing.
Smells and sounds happen to us pretty much at the same time. And that’s why I think they’re together in Chinese medicine, through listening and smelling body odors. Again, a Chesapeake Bay retriever might often have a kind of damp smell because they have an oily coat, and here we have stool and urine.
They should smell. If they don’t smell, that’s not good either. That means that the digestion process is not doing its job, but if it’s an extreme smell, that isn’t good. So it has to be a balanced smell, so to speak. If it’s an extreme smell. And it’s, it usually indicates what we call a hot condition, a heat condition that, in other words, it’s cooking too hot internally to have a very extreme smell.
A quick example for that would be you go by your garbage in the winter. Yeah. Doesn’t smell so bad. You go and buy your garbage in the summer, especially toward garbage day. Yes. The heat of the summer helps the breakdown and creates extreme smells.
#3 History & Inquiry
Okay, next, we’re up to number three. This can be challenging history, inquiry, and questioning because we don’t always know.
A lot of our dogs come from shelters, and a lot of our animals, we just don’t know their backgrounds. But you try to get as much information as possible from the person who’s either the pet’s companion in some shape or form. So the daily routine, when do they eat? Do they sleep? Do they rest?
Do they, what? What’s their day like? How many walks do they have? Can they go out and just play vigorously, or are they contained in a crate? A lot of the day, we have a little Daschund. Spent fourteen hours a day, and he is a mess. He was in his crate for 14 hours a day, and I don’t think the people gave him very much attention until they finally turned him into the Humane Society.
They asked us to help him. We picked him up, thinking we were fostering. It’s six years later because absolutely no one else would’ve kept him alive. He’s sad. Little fella, but we love him. He’s a love dog.
What kind of sport is he a couch potato- like a lot of Greyhounds, which I’ve had.
- Is he a coursing dog?
- A Frisbee dog, just a walking dog.
- A beach buddy.
- It’s important to know how much exercise the animal is getting and how much rest.
- It’s equally as important that you have to rest.
- What food are they eating?
- Is it a natural raw food?
- Is it a par boil because they’re older?
- Is it other kinds of food that are available?
Those are questions you need to ask but do remember that any of the dry nugget foods tend to be hot in nature from a Chinese medicine point of view.
- Veterinary care
- Any veterinary procedures?
- Have they been desexed?
- Do they get medications?
- Have they had surgeries or
- Ligament issues?
Those are all part of the getting asking questions and knowing more and more about the animal. And last but not least, because Anne’s gonna turn it to four.
#4 Physical Condition
That’s the one we look at the physical condition of the dog as a total, and we start with the Bladder meridian just touching it and going down it because it’s actually the beginning of the session in. Once you touch the animal, you’re already beginning the actual physical acupressure massage session.
Why you trace this particular one is that it does travel from the inner can of the eye all the way down to the pinky toe of the dog or cat and. What you’re telling the animal by doing this is that this is not gonna be just, hi, I’m petting you. We’re having a nice time. You’re starting something called intentional touch.
- And you do this three times.
- Put two hands on the dog or cat and trace the meridian three times because that communicates that this is not just petting.
- This is the beginning of something different.
- The experience, just the physical, the surface touching changes the body experience.
And the only good example I have of that really is we were teaching in Australia courses, and people called me over, and they hadn’t gotten to this, the number four yet. They were just doing the observation, listening, smelling. and they said, smell the horse in the front. And I smelled the horse in the front.
It was a nice horsey, grassy smell. There’s a sweet grassy smell that horses give off. And then they said, smell the animal toward the back. And this was during a really severe drought in Australia, by the way. And the horses were only getting specific buckets of water every one or two a day. It was dangerously dry, and there were a lot of fires actually in the area.
We went to the back of the horse, smelled like burnt wood. Really strong burnt smell. And so I said, go ahead and do the opening. It’s called the opening going, the tracing, the Bladder meridian. I said, go ahead and have to keep going. And they did. And then, came back and said, you’ve gotta smell this horse.
They had just done the opening, the tracing. I smelled the horse grassy. Wow. So this is why I know that this is the beginning of the actual session because just from that somatic touch, like touch even three times on each side of the animal, that is already balancing, starting the balancing process. And they’re also finding out that, and it’s true if you touch anywhere if you touch it even on your own shoulder, your consciousness goes to that spot.
So we all do that. If I put my hand on your shoulder right this minute, guess what? Your consciousness would go to that spot where I put my hand. 80% of your body awareness would be right there. So that’s why we start there.
So what are you feeling for during the physical?
This is the beginning of the physical, number four, and it’s the actual hands-on.
Because you started out with a lot of, you’re just looking. We’re very far out.
Then you’re coming a little closer with listening, and smelling.
Then you’re asking questions, so you’re getting a little closer.
Now you’re hands-on. Wow.
Now you’re into actually trying to figure out what you’re physically feeling and doing. But you have begun the process, so don’t skip that idea.
The general condition, in other words:
- Is the muscle tone healthy?
- Is there anything specifically going on in a condition, in a location on the body?
- If there is it hot or cold? Very simple idea.
- Is it hard or soft?
We use very technical language in our classes, like “mushy.”
There are dead places that you can feel, especially on an animal that has been injured. Scar tissue. Important to know where the scar tissue is.
That would be technically cold, wouldn’t it?
- Is there too much heat or not enough heat, too little?
- Is it balanced?
- How balanced does it feel?
- And when you’re touching the whole body, you get a sense of what’s going on, and that’s part of figuring out what the physical condition is.
But you’re also, when you’re doing this, how alert, how is the dog responding or cat, how what is the response getting? You’re also picking up from what you started with, which is gene ral attitude. Are they curious, or do they wanna get away from you quickly? Whatever’s going on, this is where the rubber meets the road. It’s you figure out what’s really going on for the animals.
Now you’re down to the specific, okay, so what do you do with all this fantastic information?
Cause you’re looking at the vitality of the animal, how? Energetic, how focused, how, what is the best, what, and you wanna give this animal the best.
And this is called the Vital Chi – all the vital substances, blood, oxygen in the blood, body fluids, is everything flowing smoothly?
Is Chi doing the job of moving this through the body so that we have a nice shiny coat? In this case, for this dog, keen eyes, full power. This is a vital animal, and that’s what we are really after. But that’s not always true, is it? So let’s go onto the next slide because what we’re looking at is the balance of yin and yang, the fire and young energy in the body.
Balance of yin and yang, the fire and young energy in the body
And the body fluids and body substance balance. How is it all working in a dynamic balance? It has to be very dynamic. It has to go both ways. One takes care of the other. You have to, yang consumes, and then it gets energized by the yin. Yin feeds the yang, so water is more yin in nature, and fire is more yang in nature cause it’s raising lots of energy.
But let’s move on to the next because what we’re looking for is the balance of yin and yang.
I like these fun pictures because they look like they’re yin and yang, they’re “yang-ing.” ????They’re doing both, but they’re together. There’s lots of sweetness there and lots of energy. So the goal is to create. The goal is to create a balance of yin and yang, which are the two aspects of Chi.
So if yin and yang are balanced, there’s a harmonious flow of Chi. All the tissues are being nurtured. They’re getting what they need to be healthy. They’re getting their balance. They’re all the internal organs are functioning properly. So that is the goal that we want to gift to all the animals that we ever come in contact with.
How do we do this? What’s it all about?
Energetic pathways or channels
There are energetic pathways or channels throughout the body that are associated. There are many of them. It’s a whole web.
But there are 12 major ones and two extraordinary that have acupressure points on them. The Chi flows along these pathways, and sometimes it gets blocked in the meridians, or there might be a little imbalance and internal organ that caused another meridian level blockage.
And if it stays there a long time, that compromises the body. That means something has to be done, you have to take care of it. The longer it’s there, the worse it gets and the deeper into the body it goes, and it affects the internal organs. But if it’s, we can catch it, if we see dry skin, I’ll use that as an example.
Again, if we see dry skin and we can manage it right away. If you see the flaky or a rough coat, that should be a silky coat. There are ways we can manage it right away on the superficial level, so that would be the goal. And that’s usually blood circulation. Use the lung.
Part of the lung’s job is to make sure there’s enough moisture on the surface of the skin. And there’s a point called Bladder 17, that’s job is to send rich blood throughout the body. So this is how it works. And people say, you know these, how do you know that? They’re just the way when you pick up your telephone, and I call you, and lo and behold, can you see those energetic pathways?
They’re the same. They’re vibrational pathways. They go through the button, they’re here, and they’re on (the animal), and they’re on your phone. So you don’t see those either, do you? The idea is that Chi flows through these pathways, and we can influence them by using acupoints. And all of the meridians are named after the internal organs.
And this is a little complex and we’re getting a little deeper, but I’m gonna have, we’ll go on to the association. The points that we’re gonna talk about, these points along each of the meridians have specific functions. And yes, there are 364 points on the body, but you don’t have to learn them all, I promise, because there are more commonly used points. That’s what we teach in our program and, especially in our online program, that you’ll be introduced to in a minute.
Blood in all of it’s forms
But the pools of energy are the acupoints along each of the meridians. So by holding them, you’re adding your energy to them, creating a stimulation that influences the flow of Chi. And when you say blood as well, because, in Chinese medicine, blood isn’t only the red stuff. It’s any nutrient-rich fluid in the body.
So the body fluids are affected. So you’re moving Chi along the meridians and getting rid of blockages or stimulating increased energy, higher, more Chi in the area. An example that I can think of quickly is if you have scar tissue. It’s cold in nature. You wanna bring work above and below it, along the meridians, to bring Chi through it to warm it.
And I’ve gotten rid of a fair amount of scar tissue by doing that and warming it. Basically, you’re warming it and adding nutrients to tissues in that area. The points do have specific what we call functions, but we also have to call them energetics. And you learn them fairly quickly because there are groupings of them.
And that’s what we teach is the groupings of them and how they function in the body. And again, our goal is to restore the balance of yin and yang so that there’s a harmonious flow of Chi. Next, decided to use a quick case study before we do some questions and answers. And I chose aging because it’s really clear.
It tends to be more of a yin condition. Things are slower. Animals sleep more. There tend to be metabolism issues. One of them (we) would consider (would be) water metabolism or body fluid metabolism. Lipomas digestion can be a little more touchy. I have a beautiful 13-year-old dog, and she has frankly lost her eyesight.
She’s blind, so things do change, and that’s more yin nature. What’s interesting is she’s still running and playing and doing everything, but she, I can tell that her digestion has slowed down quite a bit. Arthritis tends to be in older animals. Not to say that there are, unfortunately, some younger animals who develop arthritis, but generally with that is also pain, which can be acute in nature.
But in terms of the aging process, arthritis is aging poor, less circulation of blood and body fluids weakens the immune system. Usually, less muscle tone starts deteriorating muscle tone deteriorates. And you can see the backbone, for instance, a little more clearly, and I’m sure you could add to that list.
But let’s start there.
So a session plan for that animal, for any aging animal, this is generalized. They have a loss of vitality. That’s how we look at it from a Chinese medicine point of view. So how do we help this animal? What do we do?
We’ll never restore this animal to a hundred percent. But we want, can manage the animal’s issues. So we want to help improve circulation, stimulate digestion, and address arthritis. And you, oh, if you want to email us, it’s just Amy@AnimalAcupressure.com.
Stomach 36 – Master point for the GI system
If you wanted that, if you’d like to get this chart, we’re happy to send it out when this is over. But this is the goal, and these are points specifically that will help. I can read it I know the chart. It says Stomach 36 (St 36) is considered the master point for the GI – gastrointestinal system.
So as the GI tract stimulates, it’s the most important point you could use for digestion. That’s why we have St 36, another point, in the middle of the, whoops, back on the very, very top, there’s governing vessel four. I’m just, I can see them. Yeah. Governing Vessel 4 is known as the Gate of Vitality.
By stimulating that specific point, you’re bringing up the vital essence of this animal. You’re actually restoring some of the vitality. There’s another point there, Bladder 17 (Bl 17) on the top. That has to do with blood and circuit, blood circulation, nutrient-rich blood to feed the tissues, all the tissues, the internal organs everywhere.
So this is basically what it’s about. It’s good stuff. We wouldn’t be doing it for the past 25 years, frankly, if it were not. So we’ve obviously been teaching this for a lot of years too. Next, I’m gonna finish this, and I’ll be happy to answer your questions. I can’t read that very well.
Meridian charts and resources
Some of my, I can read it when we, when you’re ready, let me know. Okay. As Tallgrass Animal Acupressure Resources, we have the meridian charts. We have information about how the body functions, the circuit. There’s a 24-hour clock in which Chi flows throughout the body. We give you information about that, and we have three books that are considered the textbooks for our school, for our work, for our workshops.
They’re absolutely essential if you want to learn acupressure. Online programs – right now, we have about 19 different ones, but they’re divided between small animal and equine. And people can get started with the online courses and see what they think and see if they like it.
If they like it enough, there’s going to be eventually some more hands-on courses available. Okay. This is where we are, and I’m, now, I’m open to questions. I think we’re here.
Anne: And I will, I’ll just attest to being a student. I graduated from, and all of these resources they’re really nice, full. I have all those charts, I have the books, I have everything. And they really do help you to dive in and go deep into this. And they’re really well just, put together. The charts are beautiful and they’re big and so definitely check that out. I have a link too, in the description where you can get a little bit of an affiliate.
So let’s go to, thank you so much, Amy. That was so great. And we do have some questions. Let me bring that one back up.
Q & A
Anne: Sometimes the chat doesn’t replay, but we tried to fix that. Okay, so Cheryl, let’s bring that up again. Okay, so my two pits male, six years female one year, both smell like corn chips. They must have something going on internally because they don’t have any outward signs of fungus.
Amy: Do you wanna read that one? I’m sorry. I started read it quite well. My two pits, a male who’s six, A female who’s one both smelly corn chip. They must have something going on internally because they don’t have any outward signs of fungus. Ah, is it a, do you, would you characterize the smell as a heat, a warm smell?
Amy: The question I would also have is, what are you feeding? That I can’t tell you, I don’t want to say anything positive or negative about the feeding at this point because I can’t see the animal. But it could be candida. It could be a yeast issue too. Because sometimes that can smell pop the corn chips, popcorn, that strong popcorn smell. Don’t tend to have that smell in their paws alone. But if it’s the whole body smell, that’s a little too much.
Anne: Cheryl says, I guess it might be a warm smell. (Cheryl says) I feed them Victor dog food. That is a good food. The, if it’s dry though, all dry food, it’s hard for them to digest. You need to figure out a way to get more moisture into their bodies, not just their drinking on the side.
Amy: That is one of the issues with any of the pelletized foods is that the body’s metabolism needs a lot of fluid to digest it. If it’s not enough, then you’re building a heat condition internally.
Anne: Okay. And. Carol says, is there any, is there a general grounding, massage or touch?
Amy: The most grounding point in the entire body is called Stomach 36 (St 36). It is what’s called the Earth point on the body, and it’s just on the stifle:
If you fall off the patella, just come down off the patella and a little away in the soft area of the top of the fibula, not fibula the together, picturing it to the lateral side.
Just come off the patella and go to the lateral side just beneath this joint. It’ll be a soft little space and it’s known as St 36. That is the most earth point. You can also use what are called the Jing Well points, which surround the nail beds of the dog (cats, etc). That can help with grounding as well.
When I’m teaching Tui Na, which is acupuncture massage, that’s the real thing. And it’s a little more advanced. People do need to know their meridians and their points. I talk about taking, just rubbing generally around the nail beds and that balances quite a bit of the entire body.
Even if you didn’t know anything, it’s very helpful.
Governing Vessel 14 (GV 14) acupressure point
Anne: Katie Kat (viewer) says my foster kitty has some sensory defensiveness at times when petting her back. She can get a little hissy crabby. She has sinus congestion, possible allergies.
Amy: Ah, you probably start with a general balancing and immune system. Allergies are considered in Chinese medicine to be a breakdown of the immune system. So you have to strengthen the immune system. Even the chart that we had up before would be, could be useful for that dog. Thank you. And if a horse has a fever in some runny nose, would it be a lung issue?
And what points are best? Runny nose is lung, obviously sciences. Fever, that’s a heat. How long has it lasted? Those are things if it lasts any length of time and it’s not just a common cold. The common cold is considered excess. It comes, and it goes. You get rid of it within two weeks, and it doesn’t cause lasting damage to the body in any shape or form.
The way, say, pneumonia does points, you’re gonna use the source point for lung helping. Cool. You’re gonna use Governing Vessel 14 (GV 14) at the base of the neck, and there are a lot of other points that I don’t know without my seeing. I don’t wanna judge too much because fever can be tricky. Some other infection might be going on, and I don’t know that I can talk about that because that really is the veterinary world.
If there is an infection or any sense of infection, that’s fever is an inflammation. So my thinking is you’re gonna have to, if it lasts any length of time, please check with your vet. Yes. And I forgot to say my disclaimer that it is in the description, but this show is not intended to take the place of veterinarian care.
Encouraging the body to heal
Okay. And integrative medicine is the best way to go. There are things we can handle as more natural therapies, but what we’re doing in natural therapy, I think that needs to be said or looked at as we’re encouraging the body to heal. That’s our job, to encourage the body to heal. We can’t. We’re not curing anything.
We can’t think of it that way. It is simply helping the body to heal as naturally as possible. And rebalance. That’s our goal. If we see, if the animal’s bleeding out, don’t go to acupressure, the massage therapist, please, or an animal intuitive. You need to get to vet!
And it’s like people would say, can you, we’re often the last resort, say a ligament issue. If it’s totally detached, that’s not gonna work. There’s, we can help nourish the tissues around it, and help remove toxins that are around it. But we’re not gonna be attached to the tendon, most likely because tendons don’t have their own blood supply.
So we are working around them. And helping with the fascia being nutrient, again, raising, receiving its nutrients, but until it’s re-attached, the animal’s gonna be in a lot of pain. So that’s how I look at it and I wanna be as resourceful as possible. Cause that’s the name for our business.
But you also have to consider the extremes that not to jeopardize the health of the animal. Okay. Okay. And Heather, just a comment, she says, I just started Acu-Dog, and it’s so nice to get a sense of Amy’s personality. I’m a vet tech and do a lot of laser therapy and some massage. Lovely webinar.
Triple Heater and Cushings disease
Thank you. We’ll keep in touch. Thank you for being here. You’re welcome. And Tammy asks, are there main points to help a dog with Cushing’s disease? She has a lot of irritation under her chin to ears. Thank you.
Cushing’s disease is a tricky one because it has to do with the endocrine system. Obviously, it’s a big deal, and I think you do need to work with a vet who is more naturally oriented. There are specific points that we use to help support the endocrine system. It’s one of the points that we look to, called the Triple Heater, that affects the endocrine system.
You have to take some classes to understand the function. It is the conductor of the entire orchestra that goes on in the body in all three portions of the body. So that’s why it’s called triple, and it’s the Triple Heater. It regulates all the – basically the systems of the body.
That’s the endocrine system. It’s body fluids. It’s the way Chi flows. It relates to everything. So Cushings is what we call in Chinese medicine a “complex” because it involves many different things, and it can show up. In horses, we see the coat, and we see the crusting neck.
We see so many different things. I, I must admit, I don’t know too many dogs with Cushing’s hair growth. You can change changes in the way you know how much saliva is in the mouth and how much fluids in the eyes. So I can’t give you a blanket answer, but the triple heater is one that we would look to work with Cushings.
Anne: And a viewer asks, what general book would you recommend for a general understanding of Chinese medicine?
Amy: Our book gives quite a dose of it. There are many textbooks, and there are many schools. But for animals, I would be honest with you. To get started, I would look to one of our depending on which species you’re looking at. It gives you a full heavy-duty dose of Chinese medicine. Yeah. Okay. So really, that main, what is that book?
Was that up on the picture – yeah, go back, there you go. So Acu-Dog the whole big first part of it, talks about the nature of the dogs (in the) first chapter, the next chapter, it’s a 210-page book, but we go through quite a bit of Chinese medicine. The whole first section of it before we get to generalized conditions, we talk about and give you charts for the conditions.
Cats are different – miracle story
And the same with the cat book. Now the cat books are a little different because cats are different. Cats are different in that they tend to only like being handled with something like active pressure and massage if they need it.
We were visiting a cousin in Israel, and we came in and been there and dinner had dinner, and we looked over, and there was a cat on the back of the couch, and the cat was 18 years old. And I asked Ilana, my cousin, what’s going on with that cat? Because she was sitting in the sick cat position with her eyes half closed. Not moving. And she said, yeah, she’s just getting old. We think she’s going to be passing very soon. And she’s not doing well.
She’s not drinking and eating, and she’s not keeping herself clean, and she’s not being as cat-like as she needed to be. So Nancy thought, let’s see what happens. So she went over to the cat after dinner and did an opening.
(The) cat didn’t move, (we) worked a few points because we didn’t know exactly what was going on with the cat. But some of the aging points that you have in that chart governing vessel, blood body fluid movement, rebuilding. In other words, taking the components of Chi and essence and moving it. Just helping her move, move her own internal activity.
The cat after she was done, she went back to help us with the dishes, and the cat wasn’t on the back of the couch. After we got done with the dishes, the cat was walking around, came into the kitchen, was eating. She lived to 23, and that was one session. So you never know, frankly, you never know. Just helping them be more vital.
That was, that’s all it was about she had, was losing the loss of vitality. It was just going all the way down. So bringing up vitality in an older animal, and you can give them choice. They don’t ha their body may not be able to respond, and that is very true. And then we. Have a series of hospice points when their body is not able to respond to help them pass.
Kidney 27 (Ki 27) acupressure point – The all that is, was, and will ever be, point.
There’s a particular point right here, it’s called Kidney 27 (Ki 27), and in another modality, it’s known as the “All that is, was, and will ever be,”point. Now cats have, some cats have, a vestigial manubrium. It’s a deep spot right in the front on each side of the top of the, where there are no longer any ribs.
That’s one way to look at it, and they’re very deep on dogs and cats, and it was using that point specifically helps the animal know that they can pass if they need to. If they don’t need to. It adds vitality. It’s the connecting point for all connecting points in the entire body. It’s really fascinating.
It is the association point for all association points. It connects right here, and if you think about it, it’s where the priest puts his hand for the last rights. It’s where we often put our hand for the last shema, the last prayer because you can feel the vibration of breathe there, and that’s what that’s about.
This is where breath is vitality. And if, as we all know, if we’re not breathing, we’re not vital. It’s not working. So the lung is one of the most important parts of the vital functions of the body. So we have a good time teaching this. We recommend people do take, we have an overview of traditional Chinese medicines, the first online course that everybody should take, whether they continue or not.
It gives you a lot of valuable, it’s hard, it’s a tough course. It’s a big course. Huge valuable information in that particular course. If you wanna go on after that, there’s AcuPoint classifications, and the AcuPoint classifications tell you, for instance, I said Stomach 36. Gastrointestinal system teaches you those, the groupings of points and how to use them.
I consider them the traditional Chinese medicine bag. They’re my big tools. I use them because they’re commonly used points. They’re very powerful. , they’re the most powerful points actually all collected together. And once you learn them, you can use them effectively. So Stomach 36 would be one of those.
Master points – Bladder 40 (Bl 40) and Bai Hui point
If you have a hind end issue, say hindquarter problem, Bladder 40 is very important. Stimulate that point in the back of the stifle, helps energize the entire point. One of my favorite points, by the way, is what’s called classical points. I use them a lot in my work, and it’s called the Bai Hui point and anybody who knows dogs knows how much they love that point.
It is right on the sacrum. From the hind corner on the sacrum where there are no spinus processes sticking up, none of these spinus processes, you guys stick up in other parts of the spine. They’re flat. It’s a junction where there it is. Feels like a little baby trampoline. That is the Bai Hui point. I have dogs that usually dance when I do that point, so that can be great.
Animals tell us what they need
That’s just a wonderful overall happy point for dogs and some cats. Not all. Some cats like it too. See it there. On the sacrum. Good. And it just feels like a soft space in that area We call it the happy point for the dogs in particular.
I had a Chesapeake once who, if I had my arm and I was just reading, watching TV or something, she’d come over and she’d flick my arm up and get her a little butt right under it. asking me to rub that point. So she, that was my girl, Shayna, that was her special spot.
Anne: Wouldn’t you say, Amy, that they’re just so intuitive about what they need, like they will, like you’re saying, just show you, like you allow them, they’ll help you sometimes to find exactly what they need once they’re used to acupressure and that your intentions are of healing. You have healing intent toward them.
With them, they participate. Sometimes dogs, are amazing. Tilly, my dog she will start chewing on a specific spot and I’ll look at her and I’ll say, oh, okay. That’s the spot, huh? And then I use it and she just will relax, move into it, absorb the energy. Very, yes. The animals know what they need.
And Nancy had a horse named Sarah who could reach, believe it or not, to the back heel bulb of her back leg, the back lower portion, all the way to tell us that she wanted Kidney 1. Wow. That’s amazing. I have my dachshund will sometimes chew on a point called Spleen 21, (Sp 21) which is on the chest of one of my other dogs.
It is the funniest thing.
Anne: Chew on the other dog’s spleen, not her own?
Amy: Yeah. Just with his little front teeth going, wow. And that, I know that Spleen 21 is a point that dog needed, and this dog knew that. So cool. Oh, okay. Cheryl says, “oh, I never know what that point was, but my six-year-old dog loves when I touch him there.”
Amy: Yeah, the Bai Hui! It’s one of the classic points. The classic points are very useful. The other one is the third eye. It’s a very nice calming point. It helps the dog / cat focus. It’s a focusing point, and that could be a really good point.
Also, if you go down in front of their nose, it’s not ours. But, so these are classical just for dogs and cats. If you have an appetite issue, the animal isn’t eating, you can stimulate that point. Just the back of the nose – behind the little black or white or whatever case, on the cat. Just off the nose, on the center line on the midline there.
That’s a very powerful appetite point. And when my cat, one of my cats was getting old and was not eager to eat, I would just rub that point and he ate.
Anne: Oh, cool. That’s amazing.
Amy: Oh, I was gonna say that in the cat book, we have two different, two different session protocols. And because cats, we have a short form and a long form, because a lot of times you’re only gonna do the short part with a cat.
One of my experiences with working with a cat and I was very industrious about picking the right points. I had done my evaluation and my assessment. I had lined up my session plan. I had done all these good things. I get to the end, I had done the points and the cat gets up, walks away and I thought, oh, I’m not gonna finish working with this animal.
There’s something called the closing. This cat literally went like this, which is the lung meridian, which is the lung meridian on that side. And I had worked on Lung because she had a stuffy nose. Went down the pericardia, which is a, has to do with emotional issues very often. And digestive issues, which was her issue.
Those are the points I had where she did what you’re supposed to do at the end of the session, which is called closing, tidying up the energy superficially so that there are no things going out. It helps just balance the animal generally. And closing this cat closed herself. Cats, I think in my, are the most energetically connected animals.
They know they’re meridians as well as we learn them. So they can show you. They can teach you that pressure.
We are Tallgrass Animal Acupressure Resources and we were Tallgrass Animal Acupuncture Institute. But we are not a school any longer in and of itself. Yet our online courses, which you can start taking right away, get you will be able to use for your credits toward national certification. And the national certification is the National Board of Certification for Animal Acupressure and Massage – NBCAAM.
Nancy and I did found it, and it is going strong. Luckily without us, we chime in periodically, but it is its own organization, and you can get national certification through there, and all of our courses are accredited. They can go, you’ll be able to use them for your hours.
The YouTube channel is there, and I’ll put it in the description, too. Thank you Amy. As usual, you have gone above and beyond with information and we are so blessed to have you. Here. I just really appreciate it and I can’t really even express how wonderful it is to have you, your wealth of knowledge to be, and to be able to have gone to your school.
Anne: And I think everybody would benefit from just checking out what the resources are because they really are wonderful. Like those charts too, they’re laminated they’re really nice, weighty charts. So thank you, and thank you, everyone, for being here too.
Amy: Thank you for having me. I appreciate it. It was a fun time. I, our main, as a resource is to share information, and it goes around the world, and the more you, whoever hears and gets into it, it’s fabulous. It just keeps going for the betterment of all animals.
Anne: Exactly. All right, everybody. Thank you so much, and as I said, if this could benefit somebody that you know, please do share it with them.
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Disclaimer: This material is for information purposes only and is not intended to diagnose, treat, or prescribe for any illness. You should check with your doctor about implementing new strategies into your wellness regime. These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA.
This article is not mean to serve as a replacement for mental health treatment. If you are suffering from thoughts of harming yourself or others, please call 911.
Dr. Mary Francis O’Connot – research study: https://maryfrancesoconnor.org/research-participation
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[/vc_column_text][vc_single_image image=”3080″][vc_column_text]As always, I am here to help by bringing results that come
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Intuitive Touch Animal Care, LLC:
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