Is your pet experiencing pain? Consider cold laser therapy as an ideal non-invasive treatment option. In this post, our Marina del Rey vets will explain the conditions that can benefit from this treatment and guide you in determining the appropriateness of this therapy for your pet.
What is Cold Laser Therapy for Animals?
Cold laser therapy offers a secure, drug-free treatment alternative for pets, actively alleviating pain, stimulating cell regeneration and blood circulation, and enhancing healing.
People also call cold lasers low-level, low-power, and soft lasers. Unlike surgical or hot laser treatments, which penetrate deep into the tissue, cold laser therapy treats only the surface of your pet's skin, making it a frequently safer option.
The Food & Drug Administration has cleared this therapeutic use of cold laser therapy. It is commonly used alongside traditional medicinal approaches for treating pain and disease.
What Happens During a Treatment Session?
Cold laser therapy treatment sessions occur in a spacious, comfortable room. The duration ranges from five to 30 minutes, depending on factors such as the condition being treated, your pet's size, specific needs, and circumstances. Your pet will rest on a mat to encourage relaxation, while the laser operator and your pet must wear protective eyewear.
In these sessions, your veterinarian will use a low-intensity laser or light-emitting diode (LED) to wave over your pet's body, stimulating tissue for therapeutic purposes. This delivers a relaxing, concentrated, light-pulsing treatment addressing various health issues. Your pet's tissue cells absorb the light, promoting repair and regeneration.
Throughout the session, your pet's brain releases endorphins, enhancing their well-being. Many pets even fall asleep, experiencing relief from pain and achieving a state of relaxation.
The laser's wavelength determines tissue penetration depth, emphasizing the importance of your veterinarian's training in this therapy and their ability to choose the correct wavelength for targeted tissue. This light-tissue interaction is known as photobiomodulation.
No specific after-care is required following a session.
Which Pets Can Benefit From Cold Laser Therapy?
Some pets cannot undergo traditional treatment methods and will benefit from cold laser therapy. These can include:
- Pets who suffer from liver disease and can't take certain medications
- Older pets that are unable to take medication due to decreased organ function
- Cats that are only able to have specific pain management medications
- Exotic pets that may not be able to take medications in the way they are normally administered
Conditions That Can Benefit From Cold Laser Therapy
Veterinary cold laser therapy treatment has been used to treat a variety of conditions in pets, including:
- Acute injuries
- Bone Fractures
- Degenerative Joint Disease
- Ear Infections
- Inflammatory Bowel Disease
- Muscle, ligament, and joint pain and injuries
- Skin (dermatological) issues such as lick granuloma
- Symptoms of arthritis (including inflammation)
- Soft tissue trauma
- Strains and sprains
How Does Cold Laser Therapy Help Pets With Pain?
Your pet may be in pain if it exhibits symptoms like heavy panting, loss of appetite, trembling, aggression, or excessive grooming. Pain not only diminishes their mobility and quality of life but also disrupts their appetite, normal behavior, and overall comfort, causing distress.
Ensuring your pet lives as pain-free as possible is crucial, whether they're recovering from surgery, healing from an acute injury, or dealing with a chronic health condition.
Cold lasers effectively alleviate pain in pets by healing damaged nerves, increasing blood flow and oxygenation to injured tissues, promoting muscle relaxation, and reducing bacteria – all contributing to a reduction in pain.
Veterinary Cold Laser Therapy Treatment for Pets at Shane Veterinary Medical Center
Veterinary cold laser therapy treats symptoms associated with various disorders actively. It primarily aids in managing pain and inflammation and promoting wound healing for your pet.
Pre-treatment requires no sedation; your vet won't have to pierce or shave any part of your pet's body before treatment sessions. However, it's crucial to understand that cold lasers are not a cure-all. They cannot reduce or eliminate tissue growth caused by conditions like mineralization in the ear canal, bone spurs, or deformities resulting from arthritis. Notably, cold laser therapy is not advisable for pets with cancer, as it may exacerbate or spread malignancy. Your pet should resume normal activities after their session.
To learn more about how your dog can benefit from veterinary laser therapy, consult your Marina del Rey vet.
Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet's condition, please make an appointment with your vet.