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My dog Zoey is 11 yrs old and has been dealing with very severe arthritis in both elbows for many years. Six months ago she somehow tore the CCL in one of her knees. When that happened, she was unable to get up or basically do anything on her own. Slowly she did improve and now can move freely around the house, up and down the steps, etc normally with no help. However, hurting her knee definitely ramped up her elbow pain big time. Before she hurt her knee, we had her on previcox and tramadol. After that injury, we dropped the tramadol and added oxycodone. Initially she was on 1 oxy every 12 hours and doing well. Last week she looked worse and I increased to 1 1/2 oxy every 12 hours. I think my vet said the max dose is 1 1/2 every 8 hours, so we are getting to the point where she is maxxed out.

I have always been pretty traditional when it comes to vet care. I do use titers instead of vaccines but that is as far as I have gone. Last weekend I took Zoey to a dog massage seminar and she enjoyed that. The second half of the class was all about chakra and energy healing and I have to say, that pushes my brain a little. Although, Zoey was used as the "demo dog" and the demo actually was quite convincing. I also found out that there is a vet near me that offers acupuncture. I don't know anyone who has used acupuncture for themselves or a dog. All I know is we are quickly coming to the point where regular medicine will stop working, and I just want to make sure I'm exploring all my options.

Can somebody explain to me why acupuncture works? I want to believe, I really do, I'm just unsure.
 

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Im not sure i understand chinese medicine/ acupuncture but, i know herbs work. My 11 yr old just had a weird 'something' that at first was thought it might be a spinal stroke. Rex's liver had been compromised( toxic food, successfully treated w herbs, much to two vet's surprise) so i was careful. 4 days of deramaxx, and back to normal. However, i have a holistic vet coming on tues to evaluate and probably do acupuncture. I adopted him at 2 1/2, with straight hocks and luxating patellas, which i am sure affects his back.he was also tied up 24x7 so really, who knows.his hind legs/ thighs look underdeveloped.could be very poor breeding and keepng him tied, im sure didnt help.
I'll update after the visit and let you know my take on this.
I've heard from many, both human and pet success.

Of course, there are those that think this a form of voo doo, so get your chicken legs ready.
 

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From my experience working around veterinary acupuncture for the past 5 years is that it works wonders for quite a few dogs with arthritis. But some experience no relief. Either way it's worth a shot because there are virtually no negative side effects. After the initial "loading" sessions you can spend about the same per month on acupuncture as you would for harmful pain killers and NSAIDS.

I do a rotation of dry needle acupuncture, aquapuncture (with an injectable joint liquid called Adequan mixed with vitamin B12) and laser acupuncture. I've seen great results for my old gal!
 

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I honestly have not seen the benefit with advanced arthritis from acupuncture. Water therapy has done wonders for fluidity and keeping up muscle tone in dogs with arthritis and joint issues. If it were my dog I would personally use hydro therapy first with some supplements.

Acupuncture has done wonders for some dogs in cases of injury from say dock diving, agility, SAR work but not so much arthritis. That is just my experience and what I have seen from others dogs. Hopefully someone else with first hand experience with their own dog will chime in soon. :)

Liz
 

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I have to agree with Liz on the arthritis thing, I have taken my 13 year old Babs for acupuncture and it has worked wonders for her knee and spinal nerve problems.
but has not done anything for my 13 year old Macy, she has very bad arthritis, a partial tear in her acl, as well as degenerative mylopathy my next thing with her is the hydro therapy
 

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Yes I have seen acupuncture treatments and cold laser treatments help with arthritis, my parent's 13 yr old lab had treatments and could walk much better after having them.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
Thank you all so much for the info. I definitely have a lot to think about. There is a rehab place right near me and they do hydrotherapy. Zoey does not like water but I'm sure that is something they have dealt with before. Not like she can move fast enough to do anything about it anyway :redface: . They require a vet referral but I know that would not be a problem. Her muscle tone is very poor all over. She has been losing weight over the last few months but we think it is from muscle loss. Her spine and hip bones are very easily felt, and if she turns a certain way her ribs can be seen. Her body condition is just really not good. She is an old 11, if that makes sense.

I am worried that her arthritis is almost beyond help at this point. I've seen a pretty huge improvement in her from the little increase in her oxycodone so at least that is something for now.
 
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