Dr. Patti Schaefer

by Neal Sivula



When did your interest in Veterinary Medicine begin?

My interest in veterinary medicine began when I was quite young however I did not pursue becoming a veterinarian until much later in life.  I rode horses professionally for several years and worked in human medicine in my 20's and 30's.

What led you to Holistic Medicine?

My interest in holistic medicine began years before vet school as a way to treat my own animals and self after seeing some of the limitations of conventional medicine.  (I come from a very large human medicine family). 

Did you have any mentors as you became involved in Holistic Medicine?

 I did not have any mentors but did read everything I could at the time on holistic medicine.

What modalities do you practice, and where did you get your training?

I am a Fellow of the American Academy of Veterinary Acupuncture.  I took the IVAS  acupuncture course and Option for Animals chiropractic courses (basic and advanced).  I have also taken some of the Chi Institute's herbal courses.   I attend as many CE's as possible to further my education.


What is the structure of your practice (eg. Solo, group, Integrative, solely Holistic)?  How many support staff do you have?

I am a solo practitioner.  My practice is mainly holistic canine sports medicine.  I have no support staff.

What is your physical practice environment?  

I see patients in two clinics, a dog training facility, and at many dog shows and events. 

What is a normal workday like for you?

I don't think I really have a "normal" work day. 

What are your favorite tools (eg. Supplies, products, computers, etc)?  

My favorite tools are my acupuncture needles and my hands.


What provides you with inspiration in your practice life?

Inspiration comes from seeing positive results in my patients.

What are your favorite conferences?  

AAVA is my favorite conference.

Do you have any other professional activities?

Professional activities:  I have lectured at many veterinary conferences and given seminars to dog groups on dog sport injuries, acupuncture, chiropractic, rehab and conditioning programs.


How do you maintain balance between your professional activities and home life?

It is hard for me to maintain balance between professional activities and home life. 

What do you like to do away from the office?

I train and compete with my own dogs.  (And this is what I am doing when I am not working).

The Future

What is the future of holistic veterinary medicine?

I see a growing interest in holistic veterinary medicine.

Do you have any advice to those just starting out?

I would advice anyone just starting out to attend as many lectures, seminars and conferences as possible.