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What is TCVM?

Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine (TCVM), although relatively new to the Western world, is a medical system that has been used in China to treat animals for thousands of years. It is an adaptation and extension of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) used to treat humans. Speaking broadly, Chinese Medicine is a complete body of thought and practice grounded in Chinese Daoist philosophy. Though it can be traced back over two millennia in recorded history, it, like any medical system, continues to evolve today, and current research on acupuncture and herbal medicine is beginning to shed light on its mechanism of action.There are four branches of TCVM: acupuncture, Chinese herbal Medicine, Food therapy and Tui-na

Acupuncture is a treatment that involves the stimulation of points, typically achieved through the insertion of specialized needles into the body. Acupuncture points typically lie along the body’s Meridian Channels along which Qi flows. Most veterinary acupuncture points and Meridian lines are transposed to animals from humans, though knowledge of some “classical points” defined on particular species have been retained and are used to this day. To learn about our acupuncture course click here!

Herbal Medicine utilizes herbal ingredients listed within the Chinese Herbal Materia Medica in particular combinations or formulas to treat particular disease patterns. Herbal formulas are administered orally and are typically given in powder form to horses and other large animals and in tea pill or capsule form to cats and dogs. 

Food Therapy is the use of diet to treat and prevent imbalance within the body. It utilizes knowledge of the energetics of food ingredients to tailor diets for individual animals. 

Tui-na is a form of Chinese medical massage in which different manipulations are applied to acupoints and Meridians to promote the circulation of Qi and correct imbalances within the organ systems. 


The Chi Institute believes that the best veterinary health care is the integration of TCVM and conventional veterinary medical care, as unique advantages exist in both systems. Thus, the Chi Institute provides a high quality curriculum that will enable veterinarians to effectively apply the TCVM approach as an integral part of their practice. 


Already taken the basic acupuncture course? Take the next step with advanced courses offered through Chi USA! 

Advanced TCVM Diagnostics and Acupuncture

Advanced TCVM Diagnostics and Acupuncture is a wet lab workshop offered to veterinary acupuncturists to expand their technical knowledge of acupuncture and to strengthen their TCVM diagnostic skills.

Chinese Herbal Medicine

Chinese Herbal Medicine, a major branch of Chinese Medicine, is an all-natural treatment option that is generally safe and effective when prescribed correctly.

Food Therapy

Food therapy is the branch of Chinese medicine that utilizes the energetic properties of food to correct and prevent imbalance in the body.


 is a manual therapy
similar to chiropractics and
massage that is a branch
of TCVM.