Animal Care 101: Veterinarian Tips

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Laser Therapy Can Be An Effective Treatment For Your Dog's Joints

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As your dog becomes older, he or she may begin to experience joint pain. If you have tried everything else, you may want to consider having your dog undergo laser therapy.

How Laser Therapy Works

When your dog has joint pain, low-level laser therapy can help alleviate the pain by stimulating cells and encouraging blood circulation. This blood circulation can help reduce pain signals. Those who have dysplasia, tendon damage, and arthritis can all benefit from laser therapy.

Laser therapy is highly effective when used with several other treatments. For instance, your dog will also benefit from a massage. You will want to keep your dog active and monitor his or her weight. Extra weight places pressure on your pet's joints. 

Types of Therapy Treatments

The two types of laser therapy are hot and cold laser therapy. Cold laser therapy affects the surface of the skin, while hot laser therapy affects deeper tissues. Cold laser therapy is preferable in most cases because a hot laser can sometimes cause burns. 

Class IV Lasers

Some lasers are considered to be a procedure and can only be used by a medical professional. The equipment is also more expensive. While expensive, Class IV lasers can treat a range of conditions that less sophisticated lasers cannot treat effectively. 

The Effects of the Laser

Another benefit of using laser therapy is that dogs tend to find it relaxing and enjoy it. Some sessions only last a few minutes, so your dog may find it easier to sit still long enough for the procedure to be finished. The professional applies a laser wand to the part of your dog's body that is experiencing pain. 

Many treatments used for dogs come with side effects, but cold laser treatments do not come with any side effects and hot laser treatments usually do not come with side effects when administered by a professional. The laser is sterile, is not invasive, and does not cause any pain. You do not need to shave the area where the treatment is applied.

You may notice a change in the behavior of your pet immediately after you bring him or her home. Because the treatment will alleviate pain, your pet will likely be more active. If your pet seemed stressed out before, he or she is more likely to feel calm now.

While not every vet has laser treatment options available, this treatment is becoming more popular. As the demand for laser therapy for pets rises, an added benefit will be how the procedure will become more affordable. Talk to a pain management vet like Downing Center For Animal Pain Management for more information.