Laser therapy for dogs/arthritis - anyone use this treatment?

Discussion in 'Other Pets & Livestock' started by Wynette, Nov 20, 2009.

  1. Wynette

    Wynette Moderator Staff Member

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    One of our dogs has pretty severe arthritis in two of his vertebrae; he's a Great Dane, and arthritis is common for giant-sized dogs. I've had him on glucosamine/chondroitin for several years, hoping to avoid it, but he's to the point he either needs to be put on Rimadyl and Tramadol, or this new laser therapy. Danes have a life expectancy of 7-8 years, this guy is 9, so he's old.

    As far as cost, the Rimadyl/Tramadol is more expensive in the long run, and could damage his organs. The laser therapy is more expensive in the beginning (he'd get 6 treatments in 2 weeks), but then is less expensive for maintenance, at one treatment per month.

    This lasert herapy is a new treatment, having only been used for a few months by my vet. They told me it seems to be "almost" as effective as Rimadyl/Tramadol. I'd for sure prefer to go with something holistic such as this laser treatment, but wanted to get feedback from folks who may have used it. Thanks!
     
  2. Wolf-Kim

    Wolf-Kim Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Well, honestly, I would go with the Rimadyl. Now, please don't be angry with me, but we must both admit that your ol' boy is ancient for a dane. If he were mine, I wouldn't be thinking "in the long run", I'd be looking for the most effective. How does the laser therapy work? Will he have to put under such as an operation? If so, I would be more afraid of a sedative complication than anything else at his age.

    -Kim
     
  3. Wynette

    Wynette Moderator Staff Member

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    I'm not a bit angry! Yep, I know he's ancient...so is my other Dane (also 9). I'd not do the laser treatments at all if they needed to be put under; I'm a huge believer in not putting them under unless it's absolutely necessary. I don't even have their teeth cleaned, UNLESS they have to be put under for something else. The laser treatments are given with a machine that sort of looks like an ultrasound machine. The dogs just lie on their sides on a doggie mattress, and they pass the wand over the areas that are to be stimulated. Supposedly, it increases the blood flow to the area and releases endorphins. I honestly don't 'get' how increasing the blood flow to arthritic areas can help - I mean, these are bones, right? How would increased blood flow work to decrease pain? I need to ask more questions. I was REALLY hoping someone on here had had it done so I could get some 'real world' feedback. They gave me a pamphlet on it, too...I see there's a website - www.companiontherapy.com - guess I need to check that out, and ask more questions of my vet.
     
  4. Wolf-Kim

    Wolf-Kim Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I would definately find out the nitty gritty details on how it works.

    I prefer Rimadyl myelf, purchased online to find a deal. Because as with people, athritis varies from day to day, depending on weather and activities. At least with the Rimadyl, if you see that he's hurting more than usual due to the cold/activities/accidents/etc you could give him a little bit more. You can vary the dosage on the amount of pain he shows. That's just me, while I don't like to drug and dose on a regular basis, I think sometimes we just have to make an exception for our older friends. My grandparents keep Rimadyl on hand for their dog because she's older and if she played too hard or temperatures dropped, she'll display pain and they'll dose her. Other days/weeks she'll be just fine and happy running about, so they won't give her anything.

    If you find out exactly how these laser treatments work and you find other people that have done it, go for it. But if it is like the case of magnetic bracelets for athritis, they don't know "how" it works, they just "think" it does, I wouldn't do it.

    I wish more folks would jump into the discusion. It's funny how some topics are just hit and miss on here.
     
  5. Wynette

    Wynette Moderator Staff Member

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    Yeah, it's hard to believe that with almost 45,000 members, no one else has ever used this therapy. You're right; it's hit & miss for some topics, to be sure.

    Well, we decided to try to the laser therapy for our Dane. If it doens't work, I can always use the Rimadyl/Tramadol as a fall-back course of action. He'll get his 2nd treatment today, then wed/fri, and mon/wed/fri of next week. They said we should be seeing changed in 10-14 days. Crossed fingers this works! If it does, we're considering taking out Bouvier off the Rimadyl/Tramadol and switching him to this laser therapy. My other 9-year old Dane isn't having issues yet...at least not that need attention, so by the time she does, we'll have some good experience with the laser therapy in order to make a decision there, too.
     
  6. Wolf-Kim

    Wolf-Kim Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Definately let us know how it goes. I am very interested in it!
     
  7. Wynette

    Wynette Moderator Staff Member

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    Will do! [​IMG]
     
  8. BarkerChickens

    BarkerChickens Microbrewing Chickenologist

    Nov 25, 2007
    High Desert, CA
    Wynette, did you end up trying the laser therapy? If so, what were your thoughts on it?
     
  9. Eagle2026

    Eagle2026 HIGH FLYER

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    Would like to know about the laser as well, as my Popeye is on Tram.?
     
  10. Bluemoon420

    Bluemoon420 The Rooster Queen

    I've never heard of the laser therapy, but have had to give one of our dogs rimadyl. Our dog Brody ( one of the fosters we kept ) has alwys had knee problems, and during the winter he sometimes shows symptoms of arthritis. He's about 7 now, and for whatever reason, this year he's had no problems. Previous years he has had to have rimadyl, and he always did great on it. Our vet basically said keep his weight healthy, and keep an eye out if his knee worsens.


    We have a lurcher ( great dane/grey hound) he's 7 years old now, and haven't had to worry yet about arthritis. He's been romping around in the snow with our 8 month old GSD with no issues. Despite all the awful things previous owners did to him, he's one of the biggest, sweetest, goofball there is. I'm hoping his hips don't end up causing him issues soon, but this laser treatment interests me. Please keep me posted if you go with the treatment. I know the rimadyl works because Brody has had to use it, but if there is a treatment that's more holistic. I'll be willing to try it.

    Bluemoon
     

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