Proposed Veterinary Rehabilitation Regulations – We Need Your Support!

On September 10, 2015 the California Veterinary Medical Board will be holding a hearing to present and discuss the proposed regulations that will govern those of us who provide physical rehabilitation to our veterinary patients. The proposed wording of the regulations designates Veterinarians, Registered Veterinary Technicians and Physical Therapists as the only professionals who can perform therapies involved in physical rehabilitation. In addition, the regulations require a veterinarian to be on the premises when the therapies are provided. This is defined as direct supervision.

After more than 14 years of providing physical rehabilitation therapies to our patients, we believe that these regulations are appropriate and provide for the safe and professional care of your pet. We support the proposed regulations as they are written.

There are some individuals who feel it is not necessary to have a veterinarian on the premises when your pet is receiving therapy, and as such, these individuals will be objecting to the wording of the proposed regulations. This could mean if your pet needs to have his medications adjusted, medical care provided or has an emergency while receiving physical rehabilitation therapy, a Veterinarian would not be there to help. We do not feel that this meets the standard of care you should expect and your pet deserves.

We are asking for you help and support in notifying the California Veterinary Medical Board that it is important to your pet’s safety to have his or her care overseen by a veterinarian while receiving physical rehabilitation.

There are a number of ways to support the proposed regulations:

1) We are presenting a packet of letters to the Veterinary Medical Board and would be happy to
include a letter from you in our packet. I will be sending it on September 3, 2015.

2) You can also send a letter directly to:

Elizabeth Bynum
California Veterinary Medical Board
1747 N Market Blvd
Suite 230
Sacramento, CA. 95834-2987

3) You could also send an email of support with Animal Rehabilitation Regulations in the subject line to: Elizabeth.Bynum@dca.ca.gov

4)  You can read and sign this petition as a show of support (copy and paste the link into your browser):  www.ipetitions.com/petition/california-veterinary-physical-rehabilitation

5) A final way to express your support would be to attend the meeting and share your thoughts in person. It will be held in Sacramento September 10th at 9 am and a large attendance is expected.

Thank you for your support of our work in providing the best standard of care for your pet.

Penny Benefits from Physical Rehabilitation

penny fortneyPenny is an adorable 4 year old miniature Dachshund who came to us in October of 2014 after being hit by a car. In that accident, she sustained a broken pelvis and neurological damage to her hind limbs. Penny had two surgeries in August and September, and had a lot of work ahead of her to rebuild the muscle strength in her rear limbs and to improve her flexibility and coordination. With selfless dedication to her recovery by her foster care provider, Marcia, and a combination of home strengthening and stretching exercises and regular visits for underwater treadmill work and cold laser treatments, Penny is now mobile again and back to being a happy young dog.  She has regained much of her flexibility and mobility and is now able to use all four legs again. Despite her debilitating injuries, Penny never lost her loving and bubbly personality, and because of her tenacious spirit, giving up was never an option. Penny has since “graduated” from the rehab center and was adopted into her forever family. Her new owners say she is doing great and even runs on the beach during their many family outings.

Is Your Dog Hurting Silently?

By Dr. Erin Troy

How do you know when someone you love hurts? Normally, you can ask them, but we don’t speak the same language as some of our most beloved family members. Most of our dogs don’t tell us in an easily understandable way when they are sore or uncomfortable.

As responsible pet parents, we need to watch for the early, subtle signs of pain and discomfort. Many of us think the most obvious sign of pain is whining or crying, but that could not be further from the truth. We need to be looking for more subtle clues, such as taking longer to stand or lie down, difficulty or refusal to get on the bed or into the car, and slowing down on walks. Other indicators include excessive panting that is not temperature related, restlessness at night, and reclusive behavior. Keep in mind that if your dog has a sore back or is uncomfortable in more than one leg, he or she will not limp but will still be suffering.

The earlier pain is recognized, the earlier it can be treated and the less damage done to your dog’s body. Chronic untreated pain can have far-reaching effects and cause dysfunction in all parts of your dog’s body. Many of us believe it is normal for an aging dog to slow down, and we attribute many mobility changes to “He is just getting older.” A senior dog deserves as much comfort as we can provide, and there are many ways that you and your veterinarian can help your dog age gracefully and pain free.

If you are concerned about your dog’s comfort, the first step is a thorough examination by your veterinarian to assess muscle pain, orthopedic pain and neuropathic pain. This includes gait evaluation, palpation and, potentially, x-rays.

Once localization of discomfort is made, you can talk with your veterinarian about a multimodal approach to manage the discomfort and prevent the development of compensatory dysfunction. This plan can consist of medications, supplements, nutrition, acupuncture, chiropractic care and physical rehabilitation, which can include therapeutic laser treatments and targeted exercises.

Unrecognized problems go untreated, and discomfort in our dogs is no exception. Don’t be afraid to look for pain in your dog. Make it a show of love – to be sure your dog is as active and comfortable as he can be throughout his entire life.

Liberty Belle – Physical Rehabiliation after TPLO Surgery

Liberty Belle came to us in July of 2013 after having TPLO surgery on both of her knees because of cruciate ligament tears. As a youngster, she was trained as a search and rescue dog. Her career was cut short when the elbow dysplasia was discovered and surgery was performed, and she was re-homed with [Read more…]

Romeo – Spinal Surgery Recovery Aided by Hydrotherapy, Cold Laser and Acupuncture

Romeo is a 5 year old French bulldog and, as his name suggests, is quite the ladies’ man. He came to us in July of 2013 after surgery to address a traumatic spinal injury that left his rear limbs paralyzed. Romeo and his family worked diligently with us to get Romeo back to his adventurous [Read more…]

Dr. Erin Troy Finalist in AVMF’s America’s Favorite Veterinarian Contest

AVMF_AFV-Logo2Dr. Erin Troy has been selected as 1 of 20 finalists for America’s Favorite Veterinarian!   The 20 finalists were selected by an American Veterinary Medical Foundation review panel from more than 700 nominations. Dr. Troy was selected because of her nominators’ essays, and her community involvement, ethical behavior, passion for her profession, and connections to animals and their owners. Dr. Troy cares for the animals we love and cherish, so let’s show her how much we care about her, by voting for her to become America’s Favorite Veterinarian!
This is the 50 year anniversary of the American Veterinary Medical Foundation which is a charitable organization that supports veterinary students and veterinarians with continuing to make advancements and breakthroughs in the field of veterinary medicine.
Visit the AVMF website    www.americasfavoriteveterinarian.org to vote for Dr. Troy and to learn more about this important organization. You may vote 1 time per day until voting closes on September 1, 2014. Please don’t hesitate to share this with your friends and family through email or social media and encourage them to vote daily.

Pulsed Signal Therapy-it’s not just Hocus Pocus!

Pulsed Signal Therapy is a relatively new technology used to treat chronic pain in pets. Used internationally for years on people, it has finally been approved by the FDA in the United States for use on animals.  Pulsed Signal Therapy or PST uses a series of controlled electric pulses to painlessly mimic pets’ natural electric signals to stimulate their body’s innate regenerative response. Basically, it tells the body to start repairing itself.  The treatment is non-invasive, painless, and requires nothing more of the pet other than to sit relatively still for nine consecutive half hour sessions. Human clinical studies show PST to be over 80% effective for people, and owner feedback shows much of the same results for pets.

Why do we have it/ who is a candidate for it?

We brought PST to our hospital over six years ago as part of our pain management program.  This pain management therapy can be used on its own or in conjunction with other rehabilitation modalities. It is a great alternative for animals who do not tolerate medication, or who have reached the limit on medication dosages and are still experiencing pain. Currently, we suggest PST for pets who have diagnosed osteoarthritis, tendon injuries, and those pets with non union fractures (broken bones that won’t heal).  Following treatment we expect to see pets have increased mobility, improvement in their activities of daily living, and a better quality of life within 16 weeks. We have had reports that pets have shown a noticeable positive difference in their lives in as little as four weeks. With no known side effects, this therapy is perfect for small animals including those that are elderly who may have other medical concerns that limit what kinds of pain treatments they can tolerate safely.

Layla’s story

I would like to share with you Layla’s story. Layla is a beautiful, sweet, eleven- year- old golden retriever who first came to see me back in April of 2012 for hind end weakness and a front limp. X-rays showed Layla to have hip dysplasia and because her rear legs were so painful, she was over-compensating with her forelegs to provide herself with pain relief. Unfortunately for Layla, this over use led to the human equivalent of two torn rotator cuffs in her front legs. She developed a terrible limp and had problems getting up. This was a dog that had four bad wheels and she was still limping despite treatment with numerous medications. She could hardly walk up the three stairs into our building. I discussed PST with Layla’s family who decided to give it a try on her back legs because they were the root of the problem. Within 6 weeks there was a noticeable improvement in Layla’s rear legs. Her hind end was stronger and she no longer had to rely on her front legs to compensate for her back ones. Based on these results, Layla’s family decided to use PST on her front legs.  Four weeks later, Layla’s family reported that she was pain free and no longer limping. Layla still comes to rehabilitation and she now bounds up our steps, eager to see her favorite staff members and spend some time on the underwater treadmill.  Her playfulness has returned and she has been able to get off most of her medications. Layla’s family is so pleased with her results they are now in the process of using PST on their other dog. When asked why she agreed to PST, Layla’s Mom said it best, “She still has so much life to live. I couldn’t let her go on living like that.”

We are proud to offer Pulsed Signal Therapy as one of our Modalities at our Hospital and Rehabilitation Center because we have seen what it can do and we know it works.

~Dr. Erin Troy is Chief of Medicine at the AAHA accredited Muller Veterinary Hospital and The Canine Rehabilitation Center. A pioneer in the field of pain management, she is a Certified Canine Rehabilitation Practitioner and will soon be one of only two doctors in the state of California to be a Certified Pain Practitioner. For more information on PST or The Canine Rehabilitation Center go to Mullerveterinaryhospital.com or facebook.com/mullervet

Canine Hydrotherapy

Water is a fabulous environment in which to exercise. The principle of buoyancy combined with that of resistance make this a most unique and safe method of rehabilitation.

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Animal Massage Therapy

Massage is not petting. Massage is a focused, intentional, and deliberate touch of a variety of stokes. Massage is a non-invasive way to improve your pet’s health.

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Veterinary Acupuncture

Acupuncture can be an integral part of your dog’s healing process.  Find out if this treatment is right for your pet.

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