Pet Laser therapy
Laser Therapy Services
Kittery Animal Hospital is proud to offer a variety of integrative procedures including laser therapy. Laser therapy can help treat many acute and chronic conditions, relieve pain, decrease inflammation, increase healing time and improve the overall quality of a pet's life.
Veterinary laser therapy is an innovative treatment that has gained popularity in recent years as veterinarians discover its benefits for pets. Used similarly to acupuncture, massage therapy, and other alternative therapies, laser treatment can be used in conjunction with or in place of medication to manage pain, inflammation, and wound healing.
“Laser”—an acronym for “light amplification of stimulated emission of radiation”—refers to a unit that emits focused, penetrating light beams in three forms:
- Monochromatic: Light that is a single wavelength (as opposed to natural light, which is emitted as a range of wavelengths)
- Coherent: Photons (i.e., tiny particles of light or electromagnetic radiation) that travel in the same phase and direction
- Collimated: Photons that travel in a single straight beam
Coherence and collimation give a laser penetrating power to a restricted area so that nearby tissues are unaffected.
How does laser therapy affect my pet’s tissue?
Therapeutic lasers use light waves of a specific wavelength to cause photobiomodulation, or the alteration of cellular and tissue physiology. Light absorbed by cellular components stimulates electrons and activates cells to promote growth, proliferation, migration, and repair.
Laser therapy helps tissue repair by causing the following:
- Endorphin release
- Vasodilation, which increases blood flow to bring in oxygen and cells involved in the healing process
- Muscle relaxation
- Decreased inflammation
- Faster healing and repair
The main clinical benefits of laser use in pets include decreased inflammation, decreased pain, and improved wound healing.
Who can benefit from laser therapy?
Laser therapy is used for many veterinary medical conditions, including:
- Surgical incisions
- Tendon and ligament injuries
- Traumatic injuries
- Wounds and hot spots
- Gum inflammation
- Dental extraction sites
- Pain management
Laser therapy is particularly useful for pets with limited medical treatment options, such as:
- Pets with liver disease who cannot take medications
- Cats, for whom only a few pain-control medications are approved
- Exotic pets for whom medication administration is difficult or impossible
- Older pets with diminished organ function
How are laser treatments administered?
During a treatment session, the handheld laser wand is slowly moved back and forth over the damaged tissue, producing a warm, pleasant sensation that most pets seem to enjoy and find relaxing. Sessions usually last 15 to 30 minutes, with the number of sessions and frequency of treatments dependent on the injury. Chronic conditions may be treated weekly, whereas surgical incisions and open wounds often require daily treatment.
Is laser therapy safe for pets?
Laser therapy is a safe, non-invasive therapy that has rare side effects when performed by a professional. We provide safety goggles to protect the eyes of our patients and their owners during their treatment.
When will I see results?
Many acute conditions are easier to treat, such as a small laceration, and may require a single treatment of laser therapy. Chronic health problems will likely require multiple treats because they are more complex. Results vary by patient.