Intro to Cold Laser Therapy for Dogs

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Intro to Cold Laser Therapy for Dogs

By Dr. Michelle Rose

Cold laser is an increasingly popular therapy that helps reduce inflammation, increase blood flow and accelerate healing. Here at Fuzzy, we use it often to treat dogs (and cats!) suffering from conditions such as arthritis, back pain, injuries or those who are recovering from surgery. Cold laser therapy is non-surgical, painless and safe (because the laser is cold, there is virtually no risk of burning). It has become a popular alternative to acupuncture treatment because it achieves the same stimulation without the insertion of a needle. Your dog is probably a good candidate for cold laser therapy if he/she suffers from: 

  • Joint injuries
  • Ligament or tendon injuries
  • Bone fractures
  • Muscle sprains or strains
  • Skin lesions or abrasions
  • Hematoma (swelling of blood in body tissue)
  • Post-trauma and post-surgical wounds
  • Arthritis
  • Musculoskeletal diseases
  • Nerve injuries

How Cold Laser Therapy Works

The beam of the cold laser consists of wavelengths with photons that penetrate into the tissue. The photons are absorbed by cells that are not properly functioning due to injury or disease. The photons help to initiate cellular processes by increasing the productivity of ATP (adenosine triphosphate), the energy source for cells. With time, this increases overall cellular function, allowing for more rapid absorption of nutrients, elimination of wastes and reproduction of new cells.

Benefits Of Cold Laser Therapy For Dogs

The reproduction of healthy cells and higher efficiency of cellular function quickly manifest into meaningful health improvements, specifically:

  • Alleviation of chronic or acute pain
  • Reduced inflammation of soft tissue
  • Reduced edema (fluid trapped in body tissue)
  • A stronger immune system
  • Reduction or elimination of bacteria in region of treatment
  • Increased blood flow to region of treatment
  • Speedier healing and recovery

The effects of alleviating pain and reducing inflammation allow your pup to regain limited mobility and activity earlier in the recovery process. The laser also directly affects joint fluid and cartilage. This significantly helps pets suffering from arthritis by increasing the range of motion in joints, which in turns allows them to engage in more moderate and comfortable exercise. The photons emitted by cold laser therapy have also shown improvement with neuronal regeneration and neural activity. Pets that have suffered nerve injury may show an improvement in neurological function and range of motion with cold laser therapy.  The best news of all? There are no known side effects from administration of cold laser therapy, and it can be administered in the comfort of your (and your pup’s!) home.

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