The Story of Hank’s Arthritis

Hank’s first Acupuncture appointment

While checking twitter this morning I came across an article about a new potential solution for dogs with arthritis. While it sounds expensive and we haven’t seen long-term benefits of it YET, I’ll be keeping an eye on this.

In June of 2010 Hank woke up one morning and could barely walk. He limped along and didn’t want to go up and down the stairs (a problem in a townhouse). So, we took him to the vet and after some x-rays discovered that our 4-year-old lab has arthritis.

We talked with friends who have had dogs with arthritis and did a bit of research. We decided to try naturopathic pain relief and acupuncture for Hank. YES Acupuncture for the dog. (We know, we promise not to reproduce.) And the acupuncture has been a good solution for Hank. Except Hank HATES needles. In fact his vet has to special order needles they use on birds for Hank. He now goes each change of season for his acupuncture appointment and we load up a Kong with cheese for him. He LOVES the vet – it’s the place with all the cheese!

This past fall our vet started offering laser therapy and we thought that might be a great solution since the bernese mountain dogs across the street from us had AMAZING success with it. But laser therapy didn’t work for Hank right now. So, we continue with acupuncture, walks, supplements, diet changes and swimming – Hank loves to swim!

Someday it may also include a stem cell injection, but for now, bird needles and keeping the weight off are doing OK.

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