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Patient of the Month March 2021 Homer Glen

Blu Bear

When Blu Bear was about 6 weeks old, he was found very hurt, and Linda Estrada, the director of the Chicago Ridge Animal Welfare League, made a special effort to save him. He did lose a leg but fought very hard and survived.

We saw Blu hours after his leg was amputated and said that if he survived we would take him – we had to have him he was so adorable and it was so unfair for such a little puppy to go through what he did

When Blu Bear was very little his eyes were blue and he looked like a little bear – thus the name Blu Bear. He is a Newfoundland/Golden mix and a very handsome boy. 

When he was about 2 an amazing thing happened. Thanks to our wonderful connection to the Animal Welfare League, we were invited to appear on the Oprah Winfrey show with Blu Bear. Oprah was having a special episode called “Amazing Animals,” honoring shelter rescues, as she had just rescued her pet. What an awesome experience! On stage he met Oprah and Glen Close.

Blu Bear loves spending his time watching the squirrels, chipmunks, birds, and other wildlife, and hanging with the neighbor canine friends. 

Blu Bear’s Family

He also loves walking in the forest preserves and around our neighborhood, though, if it were up to him, we would have snow and cold weather all the time.

He seems to believe all humans large or small are here to pet and hug him. I take him with me to my and my friend’s place – Windy City Arabians Training and Learning Center stable. There is always an abundance of children and adults to pet and play with him in between their horse riding lessons. Since Blu Bear is so laid back, he gets to be around the horses and watch all the action. He love going places in the car and even have his very own special ramp. Parties are truly a favorite – lots of people to pay attention to him. Blu Bear couldn’t possibly be spoiled – He’s just too irresistible!!

Blu Bear’s Family

Blu Bear’s family brought him to IPC Homer Glen about a year ago, at the age of 12, due to a decline in his mobility and hind limb strength. Dr. Amber Ihrke prescribed underwater treadmill, massage, laser therapy, and acupuncture to help Blu Bear to feel and move more comfortably.


Blu’s one back leg and back were giving out and I was so afraid that he wouldn’t be able to last much longer. I spoke with my vet office –  Orland Small Animal Hospital and they gave me (IPC’s) brochure and recommendation.

Blu Bear’s Family

Blu Bear came to us a year ago with the goal of moving better and improving his quality of life.  He had his left rear limb amputated at 6 weeks of age and now at 12 years old, he was starting to slow down.  With the help with rehabilitation and adding a cart to use as a “walker”, Blu Bear is moving better than ever.

Dr. Amber Ihrke, IPC Veterinarian

Blu Bear is a wonderful dog, and it is such a joy to work with him! He came to us starting to have struggles with his one rear leg (having lost the other when he was a puppy). Through laser and massage sessions, and especially having him walk in the water, he continues to maintain his independent mobility well into his senior years. One of the best ways we were able to help him was by fitting him for a cart, and I love hearing the stories of all the walking and hiking he can do with the cart supporting him. It’s amazing to work with a dog that has so much spirit in him because he isn’t letting a missing leg stop him from doing what makes him happy! 

Michelle, IPC Therapist

Blu has been going to (IPC) for almost a year. I truly don’t think he’d still be with us if it wasn’t for Integrative Pet Care. The therapy sessions helped him build strength and be able to maneuver better. He just turned 13 which is a miracle for a dog with his issues. (IPC) fitted him for a wheelchair that he absolutely loves and also taught him to love the water treadmill and give him massages, acupuncture, and occasional chiropractic adjustments – and it all has helped him so so much but especially the water treadmill.

Blu Bear’s Family

Each month we ask our POTM to choose an organization to share that is close to their heart. This month Blu Bear’s family has selected Animal Welfare League, because they saved Blu Bear’s life.

Learn more about the Animal Welfare League on their website: 

Animal Welfare League