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Treating Orthopedic Conditions

Many dogs develop orthopedic issues during the course of their lives. Problems such as arthritis, knee injuries and trauma are all too common. While pain medication and/or surgery can be effective treatments, they are not necessarily the only options. The professionals at Holistic Veterinary Care are dedicated to providing health care alternatives than will help your pets through these orthopedic challenges. The key to successful treatment is integrative care. By providing more than one treatment modality (acupuncture, chiropractic, physical rehabilitation, PST, etc), there is a greater possibility for the animal to benefit and heal. Animals who receive integrative care often heal faster and better than if they were only treated by a single method.

Cranial Cruciate Ligament (CCL) Injuries

An injured or ruptured CCL is a very common knee injury in dogs. This is the same ligament that is referred to in people as the ACL. These injuries often occur due to a combination of genetic factors and trauma.

When most veterinarians examine a dog and diagnose a CCL injury, the recommendation is surgical repair. This does not have to be the only course of action for CCL injuries. Depending on the nature and severity of the injury, non-surgical treatment options can be an effective alternative to surgery.

Non-Surgical Intervention

Dogs that have a partial cruciate tear or injury may have enough stability in their knee so that surgery is not absolutely necessary. The key to non-surgical treatment is to promote healing while protecting the knee from further injury.  At Holistic Veterinary Care, we treat both non-surgical as well as post-surgical cruciate injuries. Regardless of the surgery, adjunctive holistic care often results in a more functional joint and more comfortable patient.

Acupuncture/ Micro current

Acupuncture is an excellent means of pain control as well as a proven method of improving blood supply and thus speeding healing. In addition to acupuncture, we often integrate micro current therapy into the session. Micro current therapy provides very low-level ePrevlectrical stimulus that stimulates the soft tissues to heal. This therapy is widely used in people with orthopedic and sports injuries.

Rehabilitation Therapy

Physical therapy is a vital component to proper healing of a cruciate ligament injury. A well designed therapy program will maintain good muscle tone and functionality of the injured knee joint. Controlled exercises allow the knee to move while minimizing the risk of further injury. Our physical therapy programs include swimming, underwater treadmill exercises, massage, andpain control through laser, e-stim and TENS treatment.

Chiropractic Care

When a patient sustained an injury to a leg, they naturally compensate with their other healthy legs. This will often change their gait and their biomechanics. These types of changes can cause injuries to the other legs (sometimes the other CCL) as well as back pain. Chiropractic care can help maintain proper biomechanics and limit further injury.

Nutritional Supplementation

During the healing process, we supplement nutrition in order to help speed healing. If we give the body the components it needs to repair damaged tissues, it often will do so faster and better. We use a combination of all natural supplements and homeopathic remedies to aid in the healing of ligamentous injuries.

 Knee Bracing

Knee braces are very commonly used for people who have cruciate ligament injuries. Dogs with CCL injuries also benefit from these braces. While there are several companies that provide these braces for dogs, the brace made by Orthopets (Orthopets.com) is the most effective and well tolerated by most dogs. The purpose of the brace is to allow dogs to exercise while protecting the knee from further injury. This means that muscle tone and normal range of motion can be maintained during the healing process.

Arthritis

Degenerative joint disease, or arthritis, is very common in dogs and cats as they get older. When the cartilage that lines the joint wears away, bone rubs on bone and the result is pain and inflammation. Over time, chronic inflammation leads to bone spurs, more pain, and a subsequent loss of mobility. At Holistic Veterinary Care, we take an integrative approach to arthritis treatment.

In general, your family veterinarian will likely recommend anti-inflammatory and analgesic medications to control arthritis pain. These medications can be very effective. However, they are not without potential side effects and, furthermore, they do not address underlying joint problems.

The holistic perspective to arthritis is to treat the body as a whole and promote healing while controlling for pain. We work with your veterinarian to develop a comprehensive treatment strategy that addresses not only the pain but the underlying joint problems as well. Often, we are able to reduce or remove the need for other medications, thereby limiting the side effects which our patients have to endure.

Below are some of the therapy options we offer for arthritic pets:

Pulsed Signal Therapy (PST)

PST is unique in that it promotes the regeneration of cartilage in the joint. If cartilage regenerates, then the joints move more easily and pain is reduced. PST is the only treatment available that is proven (and patented) to promote the repair of cartilage.

Read more about PST

Chiropractic

Chiropractic therapy is the science of maintaining normal joint range of motion and thus increasing mobility and comfort. When animals have arthritis pain, they alter their gait to compensate for their painful leg. The result is over-stress on other joints and subsequently more pain. Chiropractic therapy helps maintain appropriate biomechanics and thus leads to decreased pain.

Read more about Chiropractic Therapy 

Acupuncture

Acupuncture is used in arthritic patients to relieve pain as well as to improve blood supply. Many patients whose discomfort is not lessened via medication improve through acupuncture.

Read more about Acupuncture

Cold Laser Therapy

Laser therapy is a means of bringing energy into tissues. By doing so, we increase the activity of cells, decrease inflammation and improve circulation. Cold laser therapy is used for a wide range of indications including arthritis, back pain and post-surgical pain.

Physical Rehabilitation

One of the major keys to arthritis treatment is to maintain a level of physical activity. When an animal (or person) becomes inactive, they lose muscle mass and become weaker and more painful. Swimming and other low impact exercises are excellent ways to help arthritic pets stay strong and mobile.

Read more about Physical Rehabilitation

Nutritional Supplements

Glucosamine is a very commonly used and valuable supplement in the maintenance of healthy joints. The benefits of supplementation do not, however, stop there. There are many supplements and herbal formulations available that can help reduce arthritis related pain and soreness, and our doctors are happy to discuss all possible avenues for treatment with owners.

Intervertebral Disc Disease

Intervertebral Disc Disease (IVDD) is a condition where one or more of the discs that cushion between the vertebrae rupture or protrude towards the spinal cord or spinal nerve roots.  The outward signs of IVDD can range from mild back soreness to extreme pain and paralysis.  Depending on the severity of IVDD, surgery is sometimes a necessity to prevent permanent nerve damage.

At Holistic Veterinary Care, we treat many dogs with IVDD.  Some of them have had surgery and some have not.  The main goal of therapy is to restore and maintain neurologic function and to minimize pain.   This is achieved through a combination of therapy including acupuncture, physical rehabilitation, chiropractic, herbal therapy and more.

Acupuncture

Acupuncture is an excellent means of pain control as well as a proven method of improving blood supply and thus speeding healing. In addition to acupuncture, we often integrate micro current therapy into the session. Micro current therapy provides very low-level electrical stimulus that stimulates the soft tissues to heal and relieves pain. This therapy is widely used in people with back pain and IVDD.

Rehabilitation Therapy

Physical therapy is a vital component to proper healing and rehabilitation of a back/ spinal injury. A well designed therapy program will maintain good muscle tone and functionality of the spine while also retraining the patient to walk when neurologic function has been compromised. Controlled exercises allow the patient to move while minimizing the risk of further injury. Our physical therapy programs include swimming, underwater treadmill exercises, massage as well as pain control through laser, e-stim and TENS treatment.

Chiropractic Care

When a patient has an injury to their spine, they naturally compensate with other parts of the body.  This will often change their gait and their biomechanics. These types of changes can cause injuries to the other legs as well as back pain. Chiropractic care can help maintain proper biomechanics and limit further injury.

Nutritional Supplementation

During the healing process, we supplement nutrition in order to help speed healing. If we give the body the components it needs to repair damaged tissues, it often will do so faster and better. We use a combination of all natural supplements and homeopathic remedies to aid in the healing of ligamentous injuries.

Fractures

Bone fractures in animals usually heal very well.  However, certain circumstances can sometimes lead to delayed healing or non-healing fractures.  Complex fractures such as those seen in animals who have been hit by a car or who are very small and have poor bone density can sometimes lead to complications.  While surgery is often a good means to properly align and stabilize a fracture, it is not always enough to ensure proper healing.  At Holistic Veterinary Care, we offer help with fracture healing through Pulsed Signal Therapy, homeopathy, and nutritional supplementation.

Pulsed Signal Therapy (PST)

PST is primarily used to treat cartilage damage and arthritis.  It can also be used to help with fracture healing.  The technology stimulates the healing of tissues through the use of a pulsating magnetic field.

Read more about PST

Homeopathy and Nutritional Supplementation

The goal of holistic care is to help the body heal itself.  This is particularly true with homeopathy and nutritional supplements.  By using these methods, we provide the patient with the nutrients and energy they need to heal.  We have helped to heal multiple animals with non-healing fractures that may have otherwise required surgery or amputation.

Dysplasia (Hip or Elbow) 

Dysplasia is a term that describes abnormal conformation of a joint that leads to degeneration of the joint over time.  The practical result of dysplasia is generally arthritis and pain. 

The most common sites for dysplasia in dogs are their hips and elbows.  Animals are generally born with these conformational abnormalities.  Early development factors such as over activity as a puppy or excessive weight gain as puppy have been shown to exacerbate the problem.

Most veterinarians recommend anti-inflammatory drugs and other pain medications for dysplastic dogs.  In severe cases, surgery is recommended as well.  While these options can be helpful in certain cases, we prefer to begin treatment by allowing the patient to feel better through improvement of cartilage, building muscle and flexibility, and relieving pain naturally. The following are some of the methods we employ to this end.

Pulsed Signal Therapy (PST)

PST is unique in that it promotes the regeneration of cartilage in the joint. This is a very common consequence of hip or elbow dysplasia.  The loss of cartilage leads to pain and inflammation. If cartilage regenerates, then the joints move more easily and pain is reduced. PST is the only treatment available that is proven (and patented) to promote the repair of cartilage.

Read more about PST

Chiropractic

Chiropractic therapy is the science of maintaining normal range of motion in the joints, thereby increasing overall mobility and comfort. When animals have pain secondary to dysplasia and/or arthritis, they alter the gait to compensate for the painful leg. The result is over-stress on other joints and subsequently more pain. Chiropractic therapy helps maintain appropriate biomechanics and thus decreases pain.

Read more about Chiropractic Therapy

Acupuncture

Acupuncture is used in dysplastic/ arthritic patients to relieve pain as well as to improve blood supply. Many patients whose discomfort is not controlled by medications improve through acupuncture.

Read more about Acupuncture

Cold Laser Therapy

Laser therapy is a means of bringing energy into tissues. By doing so, we increase the activity of cells, decrease inflammation and improve circulation. Cold laser therapy is used for a wide range of indications including joint pain, back pain, and post-surgical pain.

Physical Rehabilitation

One of the major keys to the treatment of dysplasia and the associated joint pain is to maintain a level of physical activity. When an animal (or person) becomes inactive, they lose muscle mass and become weaker and more painful. Swimming and other low impact exercises are excellent ways to help arthritic pets stay strong and mobile. At Holistic Veterinary Care, we have both a swimming pool and underwater treadmill to aid animals in their healing process.

Read more about Physical Rehabilitation

Nutritional Supplements

Glucosamine is a very commonly used and valuable supplement in the maintenance of healthy joints. The benefits of supplementation do not stop there however. There are many supplements and herbal formulations available that can help with the pain and soreness associated with arthritis.

Soft Tissue Injuries

Just like their owners, dogs and cats can sustain all manner of soft tissue injuries.  Muscle strains and tears, damage to ligaments and the associated pain are all seen very commonly.  These types of injuries can occur in any animal but are particularly common in athletic dogs. 

The goal of treatment of soft tissue injuries is to relieve pain, decrease inflammation, maintain range of motion, and restore normal function. 

Non-Surgical Intervention 

Dogs that have soft tissue injuries may have enough stability in the injured area that surgery is not absolutely necessary. The key to non-surgical treatment is to promote healing while protecting the area from further injury. At Holistic Veterinary Care, we treat both non-surgical as well as post-surgical soft tissue injuries. Regardless of the surgery, adjunctive holistic care often results in more function and a more comfortable patient.

Custom Bracing

Custom orthotic braces are very commonly used for people who have an unstable joint such as a cruciate ligament injury or Achilles tendon injury.  While there are several companies that provide these braces for dogs, the braces made by Orthopets (Orthopets.com) are the most effective and well tolerated by most dogs. The purpose of a brace is to allow dogs to exercise while protecting the joint from further injury. This means that muscle tone and normal range of motion can be maintained during the healing process.

Acupuncture/ Micro current

Acupuncture is an excellent means of pain control as well as a proven method of improving blood supply and thus speeding healing. In addition to acupuncture, we often integrate micro current therapy into the session. Micro current therapy provides very low-level electrical stimulus that stimulates the soft tissues to heal. This therapy is widely used in people with orthopedic and sports injuries.

Rehabilitation Therapy 

Physical therapy is a vital component to proper healing of a soft tissue injury. A well designed therapy program will maintain good muscle tone and functionality of the injured area. Controlled exercises allow the body to move while minimizing the risk of further injury. Our physical therapy programs include swimming, underwater treadmill exercises, massage as well as pain control through laser, e-stim and TENS treatment.

Chiropractic Care

When a patient has an injury, they naturally compensate by shifting weight differently. This will often change their gait and their biomechanics. These types of changes can cause injuries to the leg as well as back pain. Chiropractic care can help maintain proper biomechanics and limit further injury.

Nutritional Supplementation

During the healing process, we supplement nutrition in order to help speed healing. If we give the body the components it needs to repair damaged tissues, it often will do so faster and better. We use a combination of all natural supplements and homeopathic remedies to aid in the healing of soft tissue injuries.

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