Hello Friends and Visitors to the Ann Arbor Animal Hospital website! We wanted to let you all know that we will be starting a new series focused on before-and-after stories. The first in this series features a beautiful greyhound named Jack whose owners, after much thought and care, decided to try laser therapy to alleviate his pain— with much success! Jack has been an ongoing patient of our hospital and we would like to thank Doug and Denise for their loyalty and willingness to allow us to share their (and Jack’s) story. If you are a client of the Ann Arbor Animal Hospital and have had a pet who has experienced a before-and-after story please write us at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Thanks for reading and we hope you enjoy!
Jack is our greyhound we adopted in 2006 from the Dairyland Track in Wisconsin. He is now about 12 years old and is the sweetest, most loving greyhound ever. He is most happy just to be with us at all times, especially sitting in the backseat of my husband’s F150 with the small window open. He sticks his nose out for the breeze and when he is really happy he swings his tail like a pendulum and peels his lips way back, showing all his teeth!
Jack has been very healthy all his life, with the exception of the past few years. The Animal Hospital has successfully treated him for pancreatitis a few times but now he has been struggling with mobility issues. He was no longer able to go up and down the numerous steps in our two-story home. He even had a hard time with the five steps at the front of our home and my husband had to carry him in all these circumstances. He can only manage walking short distances like down the driveway and back. He pretty much stayed in his bed all day.
Initially, we were not certain whether his mobility issues were related to his pancreatitis, vision, or back leg strength. But it has become clear over the past year that is is related to his lumbar spine; his hips are starting to cause him difficulty getting up and down from a lying position. He is painful and we have been considering, as of late, euthanizing him because of this pain, but we have not been able to do so.
Currently we have him on numerous pain medications and these helped initially, but he still struggles with mobility and lately his appetite has begun to wane. We were offered laser therapy in the past. We thought it would be too expensive and we were skeptical as to the benefits of this type of therapy. But over the last few weeks we decided to give it a try, with the hope that Jack would not need as much oral medication and would regain his appetite. Jack started laser therapy two weeks ago. His first week he had therapy three times and we just finished the second week with two treatments. We are now going into our third week and the effects of laser therapy over time has been terrific!
In the first week of therapy, Jack descended the five stairs at the front of our house; two weeks later he was going up the same steps into our home. Do not get me wrong, he is not running up the stairs like a healthy young grey, but he is independent with his careful limb! He no longer struggles with circling 100 times before lowering himself down to a lying position. He also gets up quite quickly now!
Before laser therapy Jack’s days consisted of getting up from his bed only when he had to go out. We even had to bring his meals to him while he was lying in his bed. Now, he stands in the kitchen and waits for his meals to b prepared. Yes, his appetite has improved and he is now walking about the house like his old self. The best part is, he is now going for walks around the block. It may be a very slow walk, but he loves it. He even has a half cantor in his step periodically, which is a sight to behold for us! His tail waves like a pendulum again and on a few occasions when we come home from work, I have witnessed that he peels his lips all the way back— a face only mama could love!
You may think these small accomplishments are ridiculous, but to know that we have improved Jack’s quality of life— PRICELESS! I have to say, we are now believers. We will continue to perform the laser on Jack as long as he is enjoying his life. When Jack is happy, we’re happy.
—Denise and Doug, From the Old West Side