An integrated approach to medicine
Within the last few decades, advancements in veterinary medicine have caused a dramatic increase in the longevity of our pets. Taking care of your pet as he or she ages has become more important. Ideally, caring for the geriatric pet should focus on preventative measures. Whenever possible, it is better to prevent a problem from occurring, rather than to wait for a problem to develop. This is why we recommend semi-annual examination and bloodwork for pets over the age of 7.
Owners may start to notice their pet slowly down. Unable to walk as far or play as long, tire more easily. He or she may have difficulty getting up or finding a comfortable position to sleep in. This may be because you pet is being affected by arthritis. The most common form is called osteoarthritis, or degenerative joint disease. Osteoarthritis is a condition that causes the thinning of joint cartilage, buildup of fluid inside the joint, and the formation of bony growths within it. Over time, this can lead to reduced mobility, joint deterioration, and pain.
Arthritis is incurable and worsens over time. In this case, the best thing you can do for your pet is to put them on a treatment plan that slows the progression of the disease and improves their quality of life by relieving painful symptoms. Here at Catoctin Vet we have numerous options for elderly dogs suffering from pain and stiffness. Some of these include: Acupuncture, Veterinary Orthopedic Manipulation (VOM), Adequan injections, Laser therapy and Regenerative Stem Cell Therapy.
Acupuncture has been practiced for thousands of years in the East. The Chinese believe that illness is caused by an imbalance in the body. To correct this imbalance, fine needles are inserted in any of 365 acupuncture points. Western medicine explains these points as being located where there are clusters of nerves and blood vessels. Stimulation by the needles awakens the body’s own healing power, releasing endorphins, the body’s natural pain-relievers, and an anti inflammatory steroid, cortisol. Acupuncture has been successfully used for many ailments in pets, including: hip dysplasia, chronic joint disease, and neurological disorders.
One of our doctors on staff, Dr. Geier, is certified in acupuncture and also performs Veterinary Orthopedic Manipulation (VOM). VOM is a healing technology that locates areas of the animal’s nervous system that has fallen out of communication, and re-establishes neuronal communication inducing healing.
Below is a picture of Tony receiving acupuncture treatment.
Adequan is a prescription medication that can only be dispensed and administered by a licensed veterinarian. Adequan helps relieve the pain of arthritis by soothing and lubricating the inflamed joint in addition to stimulating joint cartilage repair. Simply put, it helps your dog’s body heal and prevent further deterioration of your pets’ joints.
Your veterinarian injects the Adequan directly into your dog’s muscle at strategic points for the most effective outcome. The recommended treatment schedule is one injection every 3 or 4 days for a total of 8 injections. Generally, these are administered by your veterinarian during an outpatient visit.
Although some dogs may show improvement after only a few injections, it is recommended that the entire treatment course be completed for optimal results.
Laser therapy is a non-invasive technique used for wound healing, skin conditions, post operative care, arthritis, bites, burns and much, much more…. Here at Catoctin Veterinary Clinic it is popularly used for arthritis in our older patients.
Therapeutic laser therapy uses light energy, which is cold or low-level, to work its “magic.” Light used at specific frequencies causes a physiological change at the cellular level.
These changes can include replenishing adenosine triphosphate (ATP, the molecule that carries energy in the cells of every living being), reducing inflammation and decreasing pain transmission.
Another technique used at the clinic is Regenerative Stem Cell Therapy. Vet-Stem Regenerative Stem Cells are your own animal’s natural healing cells from fat tissue and are capable of differentiating into a variety of tissue types including tendon, ligament, bone, cartilage, and muscle and have been proven to reduce pain and inflammation. Currently used for arthritis and orthopedic and soft tissue injuries, Vet-Stem Regenerative Stem Cell therapy is a holistic approach to healing your pet.
One of our doctors on staff, Dr. Robbins, is certified in Regenerative Stem Cell therapy.