Zap..or why lasers aren’t just for Flash Gordon anymore

Not long ago, lasers were things of science fiction; dangerous weapons wielded by the likes of Han Solo, Buck Rogers, and Goldfinger. Today, those far-fetched ideas about laser technology have been replaced by much more practical ways to use it, including laser treatment for dogs.

Today, doctors and veterinarians use laser treatment to deal with ailments ranging from hotspots to promoting faster healing of surgical incisions. Laser Therapy, called “photobiomodulation” in fancy-speak, is the use of specific wavelengths of light (red and near-infrared) to create therapeutic effects. These effects include faster healing time, pain reduction, increased circulation and decreased swelling.

My dog, Daisy, has had a noticeable change in her mobility over the past several months, so we took her to visit our friends at East Hills Veterinary Clinic to see if laser therapy could help.

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The clinic uses one of the most popular brands, the K-Laser. Dr. Jen Wieneke gave Daisy a thorough exam and we found a few surprises. While she had some arthritis in her hip, it appears most of her stiffness and discomfort is being caused by a condition called, spinal spondylosis, or the formation of bony spurs on the edges of her vertebrae. It is a fairly common condition in older dogs and can be painful for the poor pooches. The good news is that the laser can help alleviate some of that pain.

In some situations, such as after a surgery, the laser can be a one time treatment that will help speed up the time it takes for an incision to heal. In chronic pain situations like Daisy suffers, there is generally a regimen that is prescribed. The first week or two, the dog gets several treatments to kickstart the effects. After the first session, Daisy seemed exhausted and slept most of the evening away. The tech told me she hears this often as many dogs can finally relax thanks to the pain relief from the laser. After the third treatment, I saw a noticeable difference. At this point we are on the schedule for a treatment every two weeks for maintenance. Depending on the dog and the condition, maintenance may be needed every two weeks, monthly or, maybe only a couple times per year.

To see a before and after of the effects, Lily Laser of my Old Dog Haven final refuge foster, Lily, which shows her incredible change after the laser treatments. To find out if laser therapy can help your dog’s problems, you can find veterinarians offering the K-Laser Therapy at this link. http://bit.ly/1IXiQ3X

Until then, I’ll leave you with a look at sci-fi lasers at their best.

 

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