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If you are looking to book a cat vaccination, please be aware that there is an ongoing shortage of some cat vaccines affecting all UK Veterinary practices. Find out more here.


Learn more about the services we offer

  • Acupuncture
  • Behavioural Consultation
  • Dog Training
  • Obesity
  • Pain Clinic
  • Puppy Parties


What is acupuncture?

Acupuncture is the practise of inserting fine, solid needles into the body for pain relief or, in some cases, to help the body deal with other diseases.

How does acupuncture work?

It works through the nervous system. The needles block the pain messages and encourage the brain and central nervous system to produce more of the body’s natural painkillers. In conditions that are not painful, acupuncture may help to reset the body’s normal functioning.

Will it hurt my pet?

Acupuncture needles stimulate nerves that do not cause the unpleasant feelings of pain that we are trying to treat. They stimulate other nerves that send a more important message to the brain, which is how they block pain. Sometimes animals may react to this sensation as though they are expecting pain, but then relax because it does not occur. Most of the time they accept the fine needles very well and often become relaxed and sleepy during the treatment. Often they appear to look forward to the next treatment when they come back to the practice.

Would my pet need to be sedated for this treatment?

It is uncommon for animals to need to be sedated. This would only usually happen if they were so painful that any touch or stimulus causes them to be painful. Perhaps surprisingly, cats and rabbits often accept acupuncture treatment very well.

How often would my pet be treated?

The usual course is once a week for four to six weeks. After four weeks we will know whether acupuncture is working for your pet and then, depending on the condition and how they have responded, we will work out a plan that usually involves tailing off the treatment so that the effect is maintained for as long as possible.

Is acupuncture safe?

Acupuncture is very safe, in the right hands. Legally it must be performed by a veterinary surgeon. There have been no official reports of problems in animals, but there are some in humans and these can usually be avoided with care and a good knowledge of anatomy. There are very few cases in which we would have to be very cautious about using acupuncture, but your veterinary acupuncturist can advise you of these.

What kinds of conditions are treated with acupuncture?

Pain is the most common indication for acupuncture. Usually this means pain associated with arthritis, but also muscle strains, pain secondary to disc disease and bony changes of the spine. Other kinds of pain may also respond.

Functional conditions such as constipation in cats, irritable bowel type problems in dogs, pancreatitis and cystitis may also respond.

What can I expect during treatment?

After examination, needles will be put into various parts of the body and moved or stimulated a few times. There is not a set “dose” of acupuncture as there is for medication, so your vet will judge how much to do based on your pet’s response both at the time and after the treatment. They may become sleepy and relaxed during the treatment.

And after the treatment?

It is not uncommon for pets to go home and sleep very soundly for a long time. This is a good sign and shows that your pet will probably respond well to acupuncture. But do not worry if they are not sleepy – this does not mean that they will not respond. Sometimes your pet may seem a little more euphoric than usual; this is also a good sign, but keep them quiet for the rest of the day or they may overdo things.

Otherwise, treat your pet normally after acupuncture. Do not change exercise, diet or medication unless it has been discussed with your vet.

What about response?

Your pet may show one of three responses to treatment:

They may seem a little stiffer or more uncomfortable. This just means that the dose was a bit too much, but also shows that they should respond to treatment. After a day or two, they will improve again and should be better than before. However, you must tell your vet so that they can adjust the treatment next time.

You may see no response. This is always disappointing but does not mean your pet will not respond; it may just be that they will take a little longer or that their improvement after the first treatment was too brief or small for you to see. We cannot say that they will not respond until after the fourth treatment. Not all animals or humans are acupuncture “responders”, but about 80% will be.

You may see an improvement. This may occur anytime in the three days after treatment. The signs that we are trying to treat may then return before the next treatment, but this is fine. After each subsequent treatment the effects should last for longer, so that your pet may eventually not need more treatments for some time.

Acupuncture is available at the practice. Please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any further questions.

Behavioural Consultation

We are pleased to offer a behavioural consultation service with our head nurse Clare Kerr. She gained the COAPE Diploma in Practical Aspects of Companion Animal Behaviour and Training in 2006 and has since been able to offer advice and training to many owners who have pets with various issues.

Behavioural problems can range from pets toileting in the house, aggression problems, to fears and phobias. These issues can affect both dogs and cats.

Clare has a special interest in aggression cases and enjoys working with rescue dogs that come with some issues.

An initial consultation can last up to 2 hours and covers a detailed history of your pet and their problems. This can take place in the practice or at home. Clare will help you understand why your pet is behaving this way and give you a comprehensive training plan to work through. Follow up consultations can be done by phone or in person depending on your pet’s needs. Also follow on training sessions can be booked as and when they are required.

Clare is also happy to run One-to-One training sessions to help you tackle problems such as pulling on the lead and jumping up.

Clare is a member of CAPBT and therefore follows a strict code of conduct ensuring your pet's training follows kind and positive methods to improve their behaviour. To find out more regarding COAPE or the CAPBT please use the links below.

To book an appointment or just to find out more, please contact the surgery.

Dog Training

We are pleased to announce our resident behaviourist Clare Kerr is now running beginner dog training classes on Tuesday afternoons.

Puppy Lifeskills will help you to teach your dog basic obedience, good manners and each week you can have a go at some fun agility too. We will also continue with your dog’s socialisation with the other dogs and owners, so you should complete the course with a friendly well behaved canine companion!

These classes are held in the Rural Hall in Doune. The cost is £110.00 for the full block of 10 weeks, payable at the practice. 

The first session is an introductory talk for the owners on how positive training methods work, what equipment you might need and how to read canine body language. This helps you be the best handler you can be in order for your dog to learn quickly and effectively.

The following 9 weeks of practical training teach you the following:

Obedience Skills

  • Loose lead walking
  • Coming back when called
  • Stays
  • Sit & Lie down
  • Leave an item when asked

Good Manners

  • Not jumping up
  • Not mouthing or biting
  • Handleabilty by owners and new people
  • Social skills with other dogs and people
  • How to pass by other dogs on walks

Fun Agility

  • Weaving
  • Tunnels
  • Jumps

An Introduction to Scentwork

An introduction to Veterinary Handling

  • Familiarisation with equipment
  • Going onto a table
  • Being handled for grooming or procedures
  • Stationing


Obesity in our canine and feline friends is a problem that we commonly see. Some animals are more prone to gaining weight than others. Risk factors include reduced mobility i.e. arthritis, neutered pets and reduced exercise due to owners' circumstances. Obesity can have a huge impact on your pet's quality of life; affecting their mobility and enthusiasm to exercise and play and increasing their risk of certain diseases such as Diabetes and Heart Disease. A vet or nurse can assess your dog's body condition and score your dog on a scale of 1-9 based on:

Fat coverage over the ribs - you should be able to see and feel the outline of their ribs Their waist size - you should be able to see a slim waistline when looking at your pet from above. Their tummy- this should be tucked up when viewed from the side. In general terms an animal will gain weight if it consumes more calories than it burns off. Weight management is an important part of our day-to-day work and obesity can be successfully managed through changes in your dog's diet. We offer free nurse weight clinics where we can discuss diet plans and exercise management in a supportive and open-minded consultation.

Pain Clinic

Pain is a complex disease and requires a multimodal approach to treatment. It can be debilitating for your pet and very upsetting for owners. The pain clinic is designed to determine how much your pet is suffering. Prior to the consult a pain questionnaire to be completed. This allows us to see what the owner's main concerns are and what changes they have noticed in their pet. During the consultation a very thorough clinical examination is performed including gait evaluation. After the consultation a tailored treatment plan and report is then made for your pet.

The pain clinic can help treat a wide range of disorders:

  • Osteoarthritis
  • Neuropathic Pain
  • Muscular Pain
  • Palliative care
  • Post-operative pain control
  • Trauma
  • Unknown cause of pain

A multimodal approach is tailored to each individual but may involve:

  • Medications
  • Acupuncture
  • Physiotherapy
  • Platelet enhancement therapy
  • Tailored exercise regime
  • Weight assessment
  • Changes in environment e.g. if struggling to get into the car using a ramp or steps

Initial consultations last 45 minutes and include a full written report and treatment plan. Follow up consultations last 30 minutes.

Puppy Parties

Puppy Parties are a great way to introduce your new pup to other puppies and their families. We help you to appropriately socialise your puppy as well as discussing all other aspects of dog care. We also help you to begin their training and cover topics such as house training, mouthing and biting, coming when called and so much more!

The pups get to play with each other alongside a selection of toys and play equipment.

Your pup will attend four weeks of parties on Thursday evenings 7:30pm - 8:15pm.

This costs £40 for the block. If you are not a client of Struthers & Scott you are still welcome to come along.

We are now offering an online puppy course run by our behaviourist! Find out more here

Practice information

Struthers & Scott

  • Mon
    8:00am - 7:00pm
  • Tue
    8:00am - 7:00pm
  • Wed
    8:00am - 7:00pm
  • Thu
    8:00am - 7:00pm
  • Fri
    8:00am - 6:00pm
  • Sat
    8:30am - 12:00pm
  • Sun

Find us here:

Struthers & Scott Veterinary Practice Innes Park Station Wynd Doune Perthshire FK16 6EH
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