• Call our surgery01786 841304
  • Emergency01786 841304


Learn more about the services we offer

  • Acupuncture
  • Behavioural Consultation
  • Confidence Clinics
  • Dog Training
  • Home Visits
  • Obesity
  • Pain Clinic
  • Puppy Playgroup


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.

Confidence Clinics

The aim of confidence clinics is to first reassure your pet that the vets can be a nice place to be with the use of treats and toys then once they are fully comfortable we can introduce them to various veterinary equipment, once comfortable with this we can move on to train them for veterinary procedures such as going on scales, listening to heart and chest, looking in ears, at paws, in mouth, injections, vaccines, blood samples etc.

Confidence Clinics are run by Clare & Grace, Fear Free Certified Registered Veterinary Nurses.
Clare is also a Companion Animal Behaviourist.

Please call reception for more information.

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

Home Visits

We're visiting for routine home visits

Call reception to book your spot!

Telephone No: 01786 841304


Non-PHC Member: Appointment cost + £15.00

PHC Member: Appointment cost + £10.00


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 Management Clinic

The Struthers and Scott Pain Management Clinic is a service run by Kirsty - a Veterinary Surgeon on our team with a special interest in chronic pain management of dogs and cats. The clinic aims to create a pain management plan for patients in need through an in-depth assessment and a bigger picture approach.

Kirsty is also trained in the practice of Veterinary Acupuncture and has used this to the benefit of many patients over the past 2 years with some wonderful responses.

We are able to offer full pain assessments consisting of a 1 hour consultation evaluating your pet, their history, their current medications and a follow up report with recommendations to optimise their pain control. An optional first Acupuncture treatment can also be performed during this visit where indicated/appropriate for the patient.

Follow up appointments are 30-40 minutes and aim to re-evaluate and tweak our plan until your pet is as comfortable as is possible. Acupuncture, if appropriate, can be done at the same time.

Costs (listed with/without acupuncture)

Pain Assessment (1 hour)  - £150/£120
Follow up (30/40 mins) - £100/£70
Block package: 4 x Follow up / Acupuncture sessions £360 (save 10%)

For Pet Health Club™ Members we are excited to offer a 10% discount on all individually booked Pain Management Clinic appointments and an additional 5% discount on block bookings.

To book an appointment ask your vet to send a referral request, alongside your pet’s full clinical history, to painreferrals@struthers-scott.co.uk

Questions & Answers

When should I consider attending the Pain Management Clinic?

Many dogs and cats will develop chronic conditions such as arthritis, sometimes from even a young age! There are a (sometimes overwhelming!) great variety of options for treatment and differing advice of what to go for. Often there isn't enough time in a regular appointment to go through these in enough detail to make sure the plan is tailored to your Pet. Our initial Pain Management Clinic appointment lasts for up to an hour and allows us to take time to formulate an individual plan for your pet to ensure they are as comfortable as possible, in a
way that works for them and you as their owner and care giver.

Why should I consider Acupuncture for my pet?

Some of you may have felt the benefits of acupuncture yourselves, or may be interested in trying a natural option to help manage pain in your pet. Acupuncture works by using very fine needles at specific locations to essentially trick the body into thinking it is being injured (when it isn't!) and compete for attention with the source of pain. It not only harnesses the body’s own natural pain relief, but also helps to get rid of knots in the muscles that medications struggle to target.

We recommend a series of 4 weekly treatments and would then aim to progressively space appointments out as long as possible, and possibly even cease temporarily or altogether if an acute condition that responds well!

Will my insurance cover complimentary therapies?

Many insurance companies will now offer a separate complimentary therapies allowance for things like acupuncture, physiotherapy and hydrotherapy. It is definitely worth checking your individual policy documents to see if you can claim back for the treatments.

Puppy Playgroup

Puppy Playgroup is designed to enhance your Puppy’s confidence and help them thrive in a 21st century human focused world!  Puppy Playgroup is set up in 4 stations that you and your Puppy get to work through each week.

Confidence Corner- where we will gently expose your Puppy to a range of sounds, textures, toys and a new confidence game for you to work on each week.

Consulting room-  where we do veterinary handling in a positive manner to give them the best start and ensure they don’t fear the vets. We are so fortunate to hold Puppy Playgroup within the Vet Practice (Struthers & Scott, Doune) which means the Puppies receive the added bonus of getting to know the building and enjoying being here.

Training Station- A new early stage training task each week. all while helping you to read your Puppy’s body language and understand their needs.

Talk Station- Where we go through all things puppy from insurance to mouthing and everything in between, and answering all Pup related questions!

At Playgroup we slowly and safely socialise your Puppy according to latest guidance to ensure a happy confident dog going forward.

Wednesday Evenings 7.30pm until 8.15pm
Blocks of 4 weeks - £50 (£60 non client)
Max of 4 puppies per class

Call reception to be added to the waiting list!

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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