Just like people, pets can experience chronic pain from medical conditions like arthritis. And just as you would want to help a human family member suffering from a painful condition, you will want to help your pet find a way to be pain-free. However, taking medications is not always the best way to deal with pain. Some pets experience unwanted side effects, or it’s simply too difficult to get them to take medication. And sometimes a safe dose of medication just isn’t effective enough. Take a look at some alternative treatments that can be used instead of or alongside conventional medication to help relieve your pet’s chronic pain.
If your pet suffers from arthritis, every extra pound is more weight and stress on their joints, and more pain. And the worse the pain gets, the less exercise your pet will be able to get and the more weight they will gain.
Work with your veterinarian to come up with a healthy weight management plan for your pet. You can help your pet begin to lose weight by reducing the amount of snacks and treats that you give your pet and by improving portion control at mealtimes. As your pet begins to lose weight, it will be easier for them to move around, and you’ll be able to ensure that they get more exercise as well.
If you’re familiar with acupuncture for humans, then you already have a good base for understanding veterinary acupuncture. Acupuncture works on animals in much the same way that it works on humans. The acupuncturist uses needles to stimulate certain pressure points in the body, and that stimulation relieves pain.
Acupuncture isn’t a good choice for every condition, but it works well on some of the most common causes of chronic pain, like arthritis, hip dysplasia, and traumatic nerve injuries.
A newer pain management option that you may want to explore is laser therapy. Cold lasers, also known as low-level lasers, can provide pain relief that’s completely non-invasive and has no side effects.
Laser therapy is administered by a doctor or technician. They’ll use a handpiece to target the laser directly to the affected area. Because it’s a cold laser, there won’t be a risk of burns or cuts the way that there would be with a higher level laser. In fact, your pet should feel a warm, soothing feeling and will begin to relax – they may even fall asleep. Depending on your pet’s condition, they may need many treatments or just a few, but either way, they should begin feeling better after the first treatment.
For more information, contact Columbine Animal Hospital & Emergency Clinic or a similar location.