Integrative Animal Care
Dr. Tina is a proponent of Integrative Veterinary Medicine.
With this approach she combines a wide range of treatment modalities, both conventional and complementary. For each patient, one therapy, or more commonly, a combination of several therapies, is employed to address the animal’s problem. Dr. Tina’s aim is not just to ameliorate the symptoms of the condition, but to address the root of the problem. The treatment of allergic disease is a good example of this approach, where integrative and holistic medicine involves not merely suppressing the troublesome symptoms (for example, itchy skin), but tries to determine the underlying immune imbalances that lead to the allergic symptoms. The ultimate goal is to ensure a healthier lifestyle overall for the patient, and so eliminate the symptoms of disease. Cancer is also a good example of disease that lends itself to Dr. Tina’s all-inclusive approach. Nutritional assessment and advice is a central part of Dr. Tina’s approach to the treatment of her patients.
Dr. Tina provides comprehensive conventional and alternative treatments for cats, dogs and horses, and considers it a priority to have a close relationship with her clients.
Cats & Dogs
SPECIFIC SERVICES OFFERED:
ROUTINE HEALTH CARE
Dr. Tina provides the full range of modern routine preventative/wellness services for her patients. Her philosophy is that the best way to keep your pet healthy is to be proactive and act to maintain their good health from Day 1 rather than just intervening when they have developed a health problem. To that end, she emphasizes healthy nutrition, minimizing the use of potentially harmful drugs and toxic chemicals and minimizing the number of vaccinations administered by using vaccine titer testing and relying on the newer safer generation of vaccines that often only need to be administered once every three years, eliminating in most instances the need for ongoing, repeated annual revaccination.
The routine healthcare services she provides are as follows.
NUTRITIONAL ASSESSMENT, ADVICE AND SUPPLEMENTS
Dr. Tina considers good nutritional practice to be a cornerstone of good preventative medical practice. She will assess your pet’s current diet and advise you as to how that might be improved, using one or a combination of raw and commercially prepared foods. Dietary supplements play a very important role in the prevention of disease and aiding in the treatment of various conditions. Tina uses a large armory of supplements to augment her medical therapies.
Dr. Tina regularly employs acupuncture in the treatment of a wide variety of disease situations. Acupuncture can be thought of as the stimulation of a specific point (the “acupoint”), by needle, finger pressure, a gold bead implant, electric current, laser or injection. Modern research provides the explanation for how this ancient Chinese therapy works. These acupoints are located in areas that have a dense supply of nerve endings and associated structures. Pressure to or stimulation of these points induces the release of endorphins, serotonin and other neurotransmitters that can help relieve pain and support natural healing mechanisms. Acupuncture is a very effective treatment for musculoskeletal disorders including back pain, intervertebral disc problems, muscle soreness, osteoarthritis and degenerative joint disease, and neurological disorders. It also has a role in the supportive treatment of many organ diseases including kidney and liver disease.
Dr. Tina uses chiropractic treatment as an adjunctive therapy for musculoskeletal problems of dogs and cats.
Dr. Tina uses a wide range of traditional Chinese and Western herbal medications either in combination with conventional medications, or as a replacement for them.
INSULIN POTENTIATION THERAPY (IPT)
This is a therapy used against malignant tumors in which a dose of insulin is administered prior to the use of chemotherapy. Cancer cells are believed to behave in way that is metabolically different from normal, non-diseased cells. They appear to depend mainly on carbohydrates as their energy source and for that reason are thought to have a much higher number of insulin receptors on their surface. Insulin enables the cells to absorb sugars from the surrounding tissues. When administered, and after reaching the cancer cells, the insulin stimulates their replication and also switches them in to “receiving mode”. The chemotherapy is then administered and is absorbed preferentially by the insulin-sensitized cancer cells, sparing normal non-cancerous cells. The insulin-induced increased rate of cancer cell replication also works to the advantage of the patient, since most chemotherapeutic agents destroy preferentially those cells that are undergoing subdivision/replication. In other words, the chemotherapeutic agent has an enhanced action as a result of prior stimulation of the cancer cells by the insulin. Furthermore, and most importantly, this allows for the use of lower doses of chemotherapeutic agents, and therefore many fewer side-effects from these potent drugs.
Derived from the Latin word “prolo”, meaning to proliferate, regenerate or rebuild, this therapy involves the injection of a mildly irritating substance in to a lesion resulting in localized inflammation with increased blood flow. The increased local blood supply brings to the area nutrients and cells (fibroblasts, osteoblasts and chondroblasts) that facilitate the repair process. This therapy is used to treat primarily musculoskeletal injuries such as cruciate ligament injuries, prolapsed intervertebral discs, back pain and osteoarthritis. It also treats Wobbler's Disease. As a specific type of Prolotherapy called Prolozone, ozone can be injected into diseased joints.
INTRAVENOUS VITAMIN THERAPY
This is a therapy used frequently for degenerative organ diseases, acute infections and cancer. It entails the intravenous administration of high doses of vitamin C, B vitamins and glutathion. These agents, depending on how they are used, can be, for example, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antibacterial and anticancer.
Ozone therapy falls in to the class of so-called “oxidative” therapies. Many bacteria, such as Borrelia burgdorferi (the Lyme Disease organism),yeasts and some viruses, are susceptible to high levels of oxygen in their immediate cellular environment. It is a very useful adjunctive therapy in such disease conditions. It also has some anti-neoplastic (anti-cancer) action since it stimulates the production of interferon, tumor necrosis factor and seems to speed regeneration of normal cells.
ADULT STEM CELL THERAPY
Used in horses and dogs, adult stem cells are harvested from the fat tissue of your animal. This tissue is then sent for laboratory culture and enhancement, returned to us and injected directly into the problem area (typically musculoskeletal injury/degeneration). These stem cells have the ability to differentiate into different cell types dependent on the environment into which they are injected, such as tendons, joints and ligaments. They dramatically assist in the healing and regenerative process. Currently this technique is used for musculoskeletal injuries and chronic arthritis.
HORMONE BALANCING WITH BIOIDENTICAL HORMONES
Many animals with recurrent disease and/or behavior problems have underlying hormone imbalances leading to chronically imbalanced immune systems. Typically, their adrenal glands produce too little endogenous cortisol. The body responds to this by releasing a hormone called ACTH (adrenocorticotrophic hormone). ACTH normally stimulates the production and release of cortisol and estrogen from the adrenal glands. In animals with hormonal imbalance, the area of the adrenal gland that usually produces cortisol is incapable of reacting to the ACTH, so that the levels of cortisol remain low. In contrast, the area of the adrenal responsible for estrogen production remains functional and produces estrogen in response to the ACTH. This leads to elevated estrogen levels in both male and female animals. A high level of estrogen tends to be “pro-inflammatory”, disturbs the immune system and also blocks the action of thyroid hormone. This complex hormonal imbalance can play a significant role in the genesis of many behavior problems such as thunderstorm phobia, separation anxiety, house soiling and fear-aggression. It can also play a role in many immune-mediated diseases such as allergies, inflammatory bowel disease, otitis, pancreatitis, cancer and asthma. Dr. Tina employs specialized blood testing to determine if this is a problem for your pet, and if appropriate institutes therapy with supplements or physiological doses of cortisol and/or thyroid homone.
Also called Cold Laser Therapy, Therapeutic Laser or Low-Level Laser Therapy. Monochromatic low-level light is directly applied to the problem area. The tissue then absorbs the light which leads to a biological or chemical reaction and can help to promote tissue regeneration. Laser therapy can be used to treat arthritis, intervertebral disk disease, wounds and burns - almost any painful area. In acupuncture it can be used to stimulate acupuncture points.
LOW ENERGY PHOTON THERAPY (LEPT)
This is very similar to laser therapy and has the same indications as therapeutic laser therapy. In addition, eye diseases can be treated with LEPT.
This is a slow intravenous injection of vitamins C, B5, B6, B12, B Complex and glutathione, magnesium, calcium and possibly trace elements. It is administered over 10-20 minutes and can help to treat a variety of diseases such as immune-mediated diseases, infection, allergies, cancer, chronic fatigue, etc.
If you live far away from Dr. Tina, some of your appointments can be scheduled as a telephone consultation. If needed, Dr. Tina will work together with your local veterinarian to ensure consistency in care. Your initial visit needs to be at the clinic.
Dr. Tina also routinely provides acupuncture, electroacupuncture, chiropractic treatment, ozone therapy, herbal medicine, laser therapy and Low Energy Photon Therapy (LEPT) for horses.
Equine Boarding and Rehabilitation
We offer a variety of boarding options for retired horses and horses recovering from injury or illness. We accommodate only a small number of horses at one time to enable us to provide close personal attention to them. Boarding fee includes fecal egg counts, deworming as needed, fly control and hoof trims.
Full turnout is catered for in large paddocks with automatic waterers and access to a run-in shed. When boarding with us, for your convenience, Dr. Tina can provide selected routine veterinary services and supervision.
If your horse has been diagnosed with a musculoskeletal injury that requires layup and monitoring, Dr. Tina offers the above mentioned services to assist in recovery from the time of diagnosis until work under saddle is possible again. Restricted turnout in paddocks of varying size appropriate to the stage of rehabilitation.
If you need more information or have questions, please let us know. You can contact the clinic via phone, email or by filling out the form below. We’ll get back to you as soon as possible.
Do you offer after-hours emergency care?
Dr. Tina handles emergencies for her existing patients only.
If you have an emergency, call the office at 518.329.5213.
If there is no answer or it is outside of business hours and our voicemail picks up, press 1 and leave a message including your name, your pet's name, the nature of the emergency and the phone number you can be reached at. Dr. Tina will call you as soon as she receives your message.
It's very important that you leave the phone number you can be reached at in your message. Dr. Tina is not always in the office when she gets emergency messages and will not have your phone number with her and cannot retrieve it from caller ID.
Please do not leave routine messages in the emergency mail box.
If Dr. Tina is out of the area, or she directs you to an Emergency Clinic, these are the clinics in our area:
Dr. Tina Aiken
Dr. Tina grew up in Cologne, Germany. As a child she had various pets and developed a passion for dogs and horseback riding. Her father was an internal medicine doctor in Cologne and her mother worked as a physiotherapist.
Tina’s love of animals and her exposure to the medical world through her parents led her to Veterinary School in Hannover. During her time there she took the opportunities presented to her to participate in exchange programs with other Veterinary Schools in Utrecht, Holland and Cambridge, England.
From the outset, Dr. Tina was intrigued by the role that good nutrition and alternative therapies could play in the maintenance of good health in both animals and people. After completing her veterinary education at Hannover in 1992, she stayed on at Hannover to complete a dissertation in veterinary microbiology and then, in 1993, in the United Kingdom joined a large, well-established small animal and equine practice.
In 1995, Dr. Tina relocated to the USA. She joined a well-known holistic veterinary practice in Westchester County, New York.
After her arrival in the US, Dr. Tina trained with and achieved certification by the International Veterinary Acupuncture Society and underwent training in Veterinary Chiropractic Therapy at Tufts University.
In 2005, Dr. Tina and her husband opened a joint practice at their farm in Ancramdale, Columbia County, New York. Her rationale in opening the practice was to provide a comprehensive combination of conventional and alternative veterinary therapies for small animals and horses, in an approachable and medically current manner.
In 2014, the joint practice was split and Dr. Tina opened Integrative Animal Care at the same location in Ancramdale.
When Dr. Tina is not at work, she likes to play in a number of different ways; snowboarding, downhill skiing, cross-country skiing, sailing, horseback riding and gardening are all on her list of hobbies.
There are none at this time.
3051 State Route 82
Ancramdale, New York 12503
Hours of Operation