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Archives by Category: Chicago

Congratulations, Erin Kowalski!

2 years ago · · Comments Off on Congratulations, Erin Kowalski! · Chicago

ErinPetPlanWe are so proud to congratulate Erin Kowalski for winning Pet Plan’s Pet Parent of the Year award for 2016. Erin takes excellent care of her many IPC patients, she also works tireless hours for Bialy’s Wellness Foundation, a foundation that she created to provide families and rescue organizations with special needs animals the equipment, medical care, rehabilitative therapy, training, resources and support necessary to optimize the quality of life of their wonderful animals. You can learn more about all of the amazing work that Erin does through BWF at bialyswellnessfoundation.org.

 

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Jan 2016 Ski

3 years ago · · Comments Off on Jan 2016 Ski · Chicago, Chicago's Patient of the Month, Patient of the Month, Rehabilitation, Sports Medicine ·, , , , , ,

Ski

Ski in the pool

Ski has become such an IPC staple on Thursday nights over the past 8 1/2 years, that it would feel empty without him!  Who else could impress us by swimming 20 minutes against the resistance jets while playing volleyball with his dad or show us his fancy new tricks in the gym? Ski is a super star athlete who originally came to us back in 2007 for a CCL injury.  He has not only trained in, but has earned titles in a number of activities including agility, treibball, tricks, nosework & herding.  Rich and Ski aren’t in it for the titles, but just love training until they achieve proficiency.

Ski shows off in the gym

Ski was always an active dog who was enrolled in a variety of activities, so it was devastating when he came up lame after a walk one night.  When we first met Ski in July of 2007, his dad Rich was weighing the pros and cons of having surgery to repair a torn cranial cruciate ligament (CCL).  Ultimately Rich decided against surgery and opted to pursue physical rehabilitation instead.  That was a decision that Rich said he would do over and over again.  Ski started an intensive rehab program that included twice weekly visits for underwater treadmill and therapeutic exercise.  Even though he wasn’t the biggest fan of the underwater treadmill, he diligently did it and it’s now his favorite therapy!  Ski took to the exercises right away since it was similar to some of his agility training!  Soon enough Ski was inventing his own exercises and impressing us all with his strength and drive.

Soon enough Ski graduated from a rehabilitation program and became a member of our maintenance club which keeps him in tip top form for the various activities that he does!

Ski and Rich make a fabulous team.  I enjoy a challenge and Ski always keeps me on my toes!”

Emma, Ski’s current therapist

Ribbons from his 1st agility competition

Ribbons from his 1st agility competition

Ski has participated in the following sport activities:

Agility (titled), freestyle dance, rally obedience, barn hunt, tricks (titled), treibball (titled), canine nosework (titled), herding (certified), flyball, disc dog, dock diving, swimming, lure coursing & weight pulling.

Ski also aided Rich in becoming a certified clicker trainer (KPA-CTP) from the Karen Prior Academy.

 

 

 

Ski is a rockstar

“Trainers, vets, & sports trainers all agree that his core strength has allowed Ski to embrace so many different activities without injury.  I credit all our work at IPC with Ski’s amazing condition as he nears 11 years old.”

-Rich, Ski’s dad

 

Rich believes that the wide range of therapies Ski has received has helped him get through minor setbacks.  A flair up of lameness resolved with a series of Laser treatments, while Acupuncture and Chiropractic services have seemed to help as well.  Rich’s goal from day 1 was to make Ski’s legs individually strong enough to do the work of two if that was ever needed, which has been the case over the past several years. Whether it was the right (non-surgically repaired CCL knee) or left leg that had an issue, the other one was always strong enough to do the job of two.

Ski and Dr. Ridley

 

 

 

“Ski is like the energizer bunny when any obstacle gets in his way- he just keeps going & going & going!”

Dr. Ridley, Ski’s IPC vet

 

 

 

Make a difference!
Each month we ask our POTM to choose an animal related organization to spotlight during his or her “reign”. Ski has asked us to tell you about Alive Rescue.

“We believe tcropped-ALIVE_LOGO_HIREZ_Final1-300x109hat our responsibility is first to the animals that are in local open-access shelters with a high probability of being euthanized. We primarily take in animals from shelters with high euthanasia rates in Chicago and the surrounding area. We follow through on our commitment that every animal deserves a full life by choosing to take in animals that other adoption organizations may overlook, including seniors, unpopular breeds, and pets with special needs”

IPC is raising awareness for Alive Rescue by jumping into Lake Michigan January 17th.  Click here to donate to our team!

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Dec 2015 Puck

3 years ago · · Comments Off on Dec 2015 Puck · Chicago, Chicago's Patient of the Month, Holistic Wellness ·, ,

puck3 Puck

What can we say about Puck besides have you seen a more handsome cat?!  While dogs are primarily seen at IPC, we do have the occasional cat patient, which makes them that much more special!  Puck has been coming regularly for acupuncture since we first met him in 2011 and even though he pretends that he hates it, we secretly know he loves every second of his treatment.

 

Baby Puck and Portia

 

Puck was found with 2 other tiny kittens in a glass shop on August 13th, 2003 and taken in by his mom shortly after.  Puck and his sister Portia got along really well so she decided to keep them both, while Tiger, a giant Maine coon went to live with Carissa’s mom.  Unfortunately Portia was diagnosed with FIP and passed away in 2006, so Puck has had the luxury of remaining an only cat.

 

Puck started coming to IPC shortly after being diagnosed with lymphoma in February of 2011.  He quickly started a chemotherapy regiment and at the advice of a friend, Carissa started exploring additional treatments to attack the cancer from multiple angles.  Because of the type and stage level of his lymphoma, Puck’s original prognosis was only 9 months.  Well he defied the odds and has been in remission for 3 1/2 years and acupuncture is the only treatment he’s had besides regular check ups!  Puck prefers to stay in the bottom of his carrier with the lights dimmed low during his sessions.  After placing the needles and doing a quick exam, Dr. Ridley leaves the room so Puck can have some much needed alone time with his mom.

“On acupuncture nights, he’s extra snuggly and sweet because it makes him feel so good.” -Carissa

 

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Carissa gave us a quick run down on the day in the life of Puck.  BC (before children), Puck’s life was quiet and calm, filled with lots of naps, bird- and squirrel-watching and occasionally adventures outside in the back yard. Now his days are quite a bit more interesting with two small, loud, high-energy members of his devoted fan club. He generally wakes me up by jumping on my stomach and meowing in my face, followed by a few “playful” swats in the face if his food bowl is empty. He then immediately insists on going outside, and during the nicer months we let him. He enjoys sunning himself on the stairs, dreaming about chasing squirrels (and occasionally going for one if it teases him enough), eating nonedible landscape plants and then returning them to nature (or the kitchen floor) soon after. He generally avoids common areas while the girls are awake because they get super excited to see him and chase him. After they go to bed, it’s Puck’s time to rule the house. He spreads out on the couch, on a warm heater or in an open window, or on a lap and luxuriates in the peace and quiet. When he’s feeling frisky, he loves jumping in the air after waving cat toys and tall grasses, or batting his toys all around the house. His favorite foods include catnip-flavored Greenies, ice cream, butter, frosting, potato chips, pita chips, and pretzels. His favorite spots are the top of his cat tree, a wet shower, underneath a shady hosta, and any table you just really don’t want him laying on.

puck11puck23puck30

“I love seeing Puck on my schedule- he tries to act Grumpy, but I know it’s just an act.  Carissa is a fantastic cat mommy who has never missed an acupuncture session in almost 5 years!” -Dr. Ridley

Make a difference!
Each month we ask our POTM to choose an animal related organization to spotlight during his or her “reign”.  Puck has asked us to tell you about Harmony House for Cats!

Harmony House for Cats Updated Logo

 

Harmony House for Cats is a cat specific cageless animal shelter located in Chicago.   Their new facility is LEED certified as well (one of the few shelters in the country to earn the Platinum LEED-NC title).  They are a 501(c)3 charitable organization so every donation is tax-deductible.  

Please consider making a donation to Harmony House in Puck’s name!

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Nov 2015 Millie

3 years ago · · Comments Off on Nov 2015 Millie · Chicago, Chicago's Patient of the Month, Patient of the Month ·, , ,

 

image7Millie

In June 2014, Millie’s parents noticed that she was acting funny; she was stumbling on walks and had a hard time getting off the bed.   They took her to her primary  care vet who recommended seeing a neurologist for further testing.   After a spinal tap and MRI, it was determined that Millie had contracted Autoimmune Spinal Meningitis which caused her to have an uncoordinated gait. She responded really well to a Prednisone regiment and was about 80% back to normal.   Unfortunately she relapsed a couple of months later and could barely walk across the street on her own.  She appeared to completely lose function in her right side.  Millie’s neurologist put her on Cytosar (a chemotherapy drug) which she received every month and also upped her Prednisone dosage.

 

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At the urging of her grandma, Millie’s parents brought her to IPC in October 2014 where she met with Dr. Zenoni.  Millie started coming once weekly for  exercise, massage, underwater treadmill and acupuncture sessions.  Since she had so many therapies in a day, her parents opted to board her with us and she quickly became a staff favorite!  Millie is an independent lady who prefers to do things her own way.   Even though she may walk a little goofy, she knows exactly where she’s going and has a plan on how to get there.

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Millie’s gentle disposition and determination has made her a joy to work with.  She is up for anything and actually had to be kept back in the beginning from attempting too advanced exercises!  She melts for her massage and absolutely loves doing cavalettis (she’d do them all day if we let her)!  Even though we’re happy that she’s doing so well that she only has to come in once a month, we’re also a little sad we don’t get to see her as often.

 

“Had we not found IPC, we aren’t sure where Millie would be and hate to think what the outcome might have been.  IPC has taught us so much about therapy and showed us how we could better assist Millie”    

Kelly, Millie’s mom

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So far, Millie has been able to maintain her health and can now go down the basement stairs all on her own!  She gets Prednisone every other day, receives Cytosar every 5-6 weeks and comes for acupuncture monthly.  She absolutely LOVES going on walks and playing with their kitten and other dogs.  Her parents report that they continue to see small progress every few months.

 

“Her demeanor and perseverance through all of this has been unbelievable; she is so happy and so loving. We are truly blessed to have her as ours.  She’s definitely taught us a lot about life, resilience and determination. ”  

-Kelly

Make a difference!
Each month we ask our POTM to choose an animal related organization to spotlight during his or her “reign”.  Millie has asked us to tell you about Bialy’s Wellness Foundation.

downloadProviding families and rescue organizations with special needs animals the equipment, medical care, rehabilitative therapy, training, resources and support necessary to optimize the quality of life of their wonderful animals. Our mission is only possible from the generosity of our supporters. Bialy’s Wellness Foundation’s goal is to provide assistance to our sponsored animals for life.

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Oct 2015 Edgar

3 years ago · · Comments Off on Oct 2015 Edgar · Chicago, Chicago's Patient of the Month, Patient of the Month ·, , , ,

Beautiful Edgar on field trip to EvanstonEdgar

Edgar was diagnosed with degenerative myelopathy (DM) almost a year ago, which is unfortunately common among the corgi breed.  DM is a progressive disease of the spinal cord which begins with the loss of coordination in the hind limbs.  While there is no known cure, a lot can be done to strengthen the front end and keep the dog more comfortable as the disease progresses.

Edgar joined the IPC family earlier this Summer when his mom was exploring ways to help keep him strong.   He met with Dr. Zenoni and Emma to create a specific treatment plan which included twice weekly underwater treadmill and laser sessions.  His parents were also taught some exercises to do at home and some adjustments were made to his cart to keep him cruising comfortably (and in style)!

Although DM often feels like a terrible curse, it has bonded he and I together in a way that probably wouldn’t have happened otherwise

-Laura, Edgar’s mom

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Welcome, Erin Kowalski

3 years ago · · Comments Off on Welcome, Erin Kowalski · Chicago ·

ErinpicIntegrative Pet Care is excited to welcome Erin Kowalski to our team! Erin has worked closely with IPC for several years, first as client and colleague and now as a massage therapist and animal rehabilitation therapist in training. You may recognize her as the founder of Bialy’s Wellness Foundation and as (now-officially) mom to Josh!

About Erin

Erin has always been passionate about helping dogs and started volunteering with Chicagoland animal rescues by transporting dogs from high-kill shelters to safety and walking dogs who never got the chance to get out of their crates to exercise. She quickly found her place as a permanent foster parent to many puppies. Over the past 8 years she has opened her home to 76 foster dogs and founded Bialy’s Wellness Foundation.
Her initial interest in canine massage came from working with rescue animals. After discussing and researching the benefits of canine massage and how it could help the wonderful dogs in the rescue community, Erin enrolled in the Advanced Certification program at Chicago School of Canine Massage and completed the amazingly influential course in 2011.

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Sept 2015 Pippi

3 years ago · · Comments Off on Sept 2015 Pippi · Chicago, Chicago's Patient of the Month, Patient of the Month ·, , , , , ,

PippiPippi

There’s just something about Pippi that instantly draws the eye.  Could it be the goofy grin and floppy ears? Or maybe it’s her commanding personality and endless bouncing energy?  Whatever it is, we’ve fallen head over heels for this girl!

I got Pippi about five years ago from Illinois Doberman Rescue.  They really do an outstanding job of preparing and presenting the dogs they rescue.  I originally had my heart set on another Doberman based on the profiles I saw.  I’d seen Pippi’s profile (her name at the rescue was ‘Harmonie’) but she looked like a scrawny little 55-pound runt in her photos.
Really smart – she would self-entertain herself by putting a ball in a bucket hanging on a door, then nudge the bucket to make it roll out so that she could chase it, then return it to the bucket.  When I went to an adoption event though, ‘Harmonie’ was the first dog I saw – she and her foster were coming up the stairs when I was coming down them, and she was such a pretty girl, enthusiastic about going somewhere new, and had such a bright-eyed personality.  I must have seen 20 Dobermans at the adoption event that day, but kept coming back to ‘Harmonie’ and the other Doberman.  I took both out for walks, and sat with both of them – the other Doberman was very laid back – in fact too laid back for my personality.  ‘Harmonie’ was enthusiastic in our introduction but not overwhelming, she walked nicely on leash, and we just seemed to take to each other right away.
My gut feel said she was ‘the one’ and I was right.  As soon as we left the event with my dad, she jumped right in the back seat of the truck, laid down and took a nap, and the rest pretty much is history.  The name ‘Pippi’ or ‘Pippilotta Langstrumpf’ is for one of my favorite childhood characters Pippi Longstocking, and Pippi’s floppy ears remind me of Pippi Longstocking’s pig-tails.

-Aquelah, Pippi’s mom

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Aug 2015 Sahara

3 years ago · · Comments Off on Aug 2015 Sahara · Chicago, Chicago's Patient of the Month, Patient of the Month ·, , , , ,

Sahara in TESahara

If you’ve ever been to IPC Chicago on a Thursday, chances are you’ve met our August Patient of the Month Sahara. She’s that little dog sitting behind the front desk wagging her tail and looking adorable! Or perhaps you’ve heard her ridiculous bark that sounds like a duck quacking. Sahara is a force of nature who always makes sure her presence is known; or as her mom puts it, “a diva!”

Belinda admits that in May 2011 she had no business adopting another dog when she first saw Sahara’s picture in an email from Best Friends Animal Sanctuary, doing a courtesy posting for local rescue. Her other dog was 14 years old and having major physical issues, but the cheesy subject line “Can you be an oasis for Sahara?” really sucked her in.

After contacting the rescue, Belinda learned that Sahara’s foster was actually her third known home. She was originally rescued from a high kill shelter and adopted out, but returned several times (most likely due to her barking). Once Sahara met her other dog and they got along, she came home with Belinda. The constant barking doesn’t bother Belinda one bit, although her cats may feel differently.

“Belinda is a super dog mom who goes above and beyond for Sahara  She adopted a dog who was returned multiple times for behavioral issues and turned her life around.  To say that Sahara is one lucky dog is an understatement.” 

-Dr. Megan Ridley

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July 2015 Prada

3 years ago · · Comments Off on July 2015 Prada · Chicago, Chicago's Patient of the Month, Patient of the Month ·, , , ,

Prada in her hatPrada

What more can we say about Prada besides, “SHE’S AWESOME”?!  Prada is an almost 16 year old Lhasa Apso mix, but you’d never guess her age by looking at her. She still rocks it in the underwater treadmill by going for 20 minutes at a speed between .5-.7 miles an hour! Prada has been a patient of IPC since the fall of 2009. Whether it was keeping her conditioned for competitions, rehabbing her knee surgery or helping her bounce back from an 11 day stay in the ER, we’ve been cheering Prada on every step of the way!

Since the age of 2, Prada has been a therapy dog with Canine Therapy Corp and is currently the oldest active member!  She regularly works at The Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago and does outreach like Camp I Am Me, which benefits young burn victims. Besides her busy volunteer life, Prada competed in AKC & UKC obedience until she was 11! Prada has more on her plate than many adults!

“Every time she’s running around the house like a puppy or sprinting down the sidewalk after a 2-3 mile walk, we say ‘thank you IPC’ and smile.”  

-Michelle, Prada’s mom

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June 2015 Bailey

3 years ago · · Comments Off on June 2015 Bailey · Chicago, Chicago's Patient of the Month, Patient of the Month ·, , , , , ,

Bailey swimmingBailey

Bailey’s mom first noticed something was off with her when she was about 6 months old. She stopped running around at the dog park and would often just sit down on walks. Bailey was diagnosed with severe elbow dysplasia and had surgery to remove floating cartilage and bone chips. Her mom wanted to go the extra mile with Bailey’s care and brought her to Integrative Pet Care when she was a little over a year old and that’s when we fell in love with this mushy lab!

“Bailey and her mom have been dedicated to her rehabilitation since the beginning. She is a gentle swimmer who enjoys fetching toys and treats in the pool. She even enjoys her pain relieving therapies like shockwave and laser so much that she often falls asleep”

-Julie, Bailey’s primary therapist

 

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