Integrative Pet Care staffers fell in love with Dreidel in October 2018, but her story starts back in 2007: “We adopted Dreidel from Chicago Canine Rescue when I was looking for a beagle, and the shelter told us they had some beagle/lab puppies that would be around 25-30 lbs full grown. I wasn’t too sure about a dog that big, but Jon and I went to see the puppies. Dreidel (then named Ravioli) was of course the only one in her litter screaming all the time, but when I pulled her out and sat down with her, she snuggled up in my lap and started chewing on my earring. I knew then that she was mine.
We were told that Dre and her brothers and sisters were rescued from a kill shelter in Kentucky, so I sometimes call her Kentucky Fried Dreidel. She also maxed out at 115 pounds before she was sick, so the 25-30 pound thing was clearly super accurate. I can’t imagine not having full-size puppy hugs now, though.” -Jen, Dreidel’s mom
IPC was recommended by Dreidel’s orthopedic surgeon, Dr. Robbins at Veterinary Speciality Center who performed both of her knee surgeries when she was younger. He thought that our services could help with Dre’s arthritis and general reconditioning after she was hospitalized in the ICU for 3 days with pancreatitis and newly diagnosed (and wildly uncontrolled) diabetes.
Drediel’s family met with Dr. Ridley after her hospitalization and she was in pretty rough shape; she needed assistance getting up, and could no longer climb up stairs. She could only walk for 30 seconds or so without needing a break. She seemed miserable and her parents were worried whether it was time to let her go. Her vet recommended that they stick with therapy at IPC for at least a month to see if she improved.
Dr. Ridley prescribed an 8 week treatment plan that started with pain control modalities such as acupuncture, massage, and laser. Her strength improved over time and she started sessions in the underwater treadmill and light exercises in the gym. It was also then that she met her main therapist and biggest fan Renee who says that “working with Dreidel and her sweet disposition is the highlight of my week.”
“Dre has responded to therapy like a superstar. She has her spunk back, she is able to go on walks and chase critters, and she can walk up the stairs again. We never thought it was possible for her to be doing this well. All of our family has said that she looks like she is aging in reverse. Even now, as she starts to slow down a bit with her new diagnosis of lymphosarcoma, we can tell that therapy is helping her maintain her energy and mobility. She loves coming to IPC and we could not be happier with how amazing and caring the staff is.
Dre is a habitual early riser now because of her daily 6 am insulin injections. During the week goes to daycare (“school”) or to therapy at IPC (“the spa”). In the evenings, she likes to eat, eat, eat, and snuggle and be petted constantly, and then she retires to her comfy king size bed that she has to share (ugh) with 2 humans.
On the weekends, Dre goes to 31st Street Beach first thing in the morning to look for bunnies and squirrels and chase geese. She is always down for going into the water, no matter how cold it is. Her new fun for the weekend is having “cheeseburger chemo” at McDonald’s as a “treatment” for her lymphoma. Then she spends the afternoon napping, snacking, and going for walks to her favorite park.” -Jen
Random Dreidel facts:
-She will lick you to death if you let her.
-She is a tough pup. Dre has torn both her CCLs, been attacked by a group of dogs in a parking lot, and got “shanked” at school (really she somehow ripped her side on an exposed nail/screw, but shanked sounds more fun).
-Dre has a bony growth on her right rear paw that looks like an extra toe with its own paw pad.
-One of her favorite toys is a plush dreidel that sings the dreidel song when she bites it. If she hears it play, she will come running.
Make a difference!
Each month we ask our POTM to choose an animal related organization to spotlight during his or her “reign”. Dreidel has asked us to tell you about the organization who saved her life, Chicago Canine Rescue.
Pearl came to Integrative Pet Care Homer Glen in September 2018 following a hemilaminectomy (spinal cord surgery), which left her unable to use her rear limbs. The prognosis was poor for Pearl to walk again, but we knew that our therapies could improve her quality of life.
Pearl was prescribed laser therapy and massage by Dr. Amber Ihrke to help her recover post surgery. Her owners were also shown how to use electrical stimulation with an NMES (neuromuscular e-stim) unit to strengthen her rear limbs at home. NMES stimulates nerves and muscles to prevent muscle atrophy (muscle mass loss) and strengthen specific muscles.
“Unfortunately, over time it became apparent that she may not regain use of her rear limbs. We discussed placing her in a cart with her owners, and after some time they agreed that is was the right choice. And was it ever- Pearl has not slowed down since!” -Katie
Although Pearl did not regain use of her rear limbs after surgery, she now runs around and has complete independent mobility in her cart. Pearl’s cart gives her the freedom she needs to live a happy and healthy life. -Valerie
“The fabulous team of Dr. Amber, Dr. Melissa, Katie, and Valerie were there to help us. Professional, caring and knowledgeable are just a few of the adjectives we would use to describe them. They guided us through all the treatments, teaching us what we needed to know in how to care of our Pearl. Today, Pearl still takes walks and runs, but now in her ‘Hot Wheel Cart’. Sometimes we can’t even keep up with her!! She is able to run through her yard and participate in all the things she could before her injury, including tons of hugs and kisses. THANK YOU to all at Integrative Pet Care. We don’t know what we would have done without you.” -Pearl’s owner
Make a difference!
Each month we ask our POTM to choose an animal related organization to spotlight during his or her “reign”. Pearl has asked us to tell you about the shelter she was adopted from, Tender Loving Care Animal Shelter.
T.L.C. has served the community as a private, non-profit, humane society, dedicated to the prevention of abuse, neglect, and cruelty to animals. The shelter provides refuge for an average of three to four thousand animals yearly.
“Since we had lost our 2 Dogs within a year of each other, it took us a while to be ready for another. We never bought a puppy from a pet store before, but while shopping for something else, my husband wandered over to the pet area. There was Libby, scrawny as could be with a sad face. We went home, but I knew she was meant for us so I went back and got her the next day. She was very sickly, malnourished and had numerous health problems but that didn’t matter since she was now family. After some time, she flourished and her sad eyes disappeared. I don’t think she really knows she’s a dog because we treat her like our only child. She’s loyal, energetic and like any Labrador, she lives to fetch and swim!” -Linda, Libby’s mom
When Libby started crying and limping after playing and fetching toys in the lake, Linda spoke to family members who had experience with integrated veterinary medicine. Therapy was advised for Libby and after searching online, Linda found Integrative Pet Care which had great reviews from other pet owners.
“Libby’s exam showed she was painful mostly in her left hip, she has muscle atrophy and weakness in both her rear legs and she had decreased range of motion and flexibility in the left hip. We started her on a treatment plan with the goals of pain control, improving strength and flexibility in her hips and normalizing her walk so she would not limp. Over the course of her eight week program, Libby received therapeutic laser, underwater treadmill, massage, and therapeutic exercises.” -Dr. Amber Ihrke
Libby LOVED her therapies and would come in with endless energy and enthusiasm. “She is a great deal of fun to work with and her happiness is contagious. It’s impossible to work with her and not smile” says her therapist Tiffany! By the end of her eight week treatment plan, Libby had increased her hip extension range of motion, improved her gait and increased the amount of weight she placed on her left rear limb from 13% to 18%. Her owner reported Libby’s mobility had improved at home. It seemed Libby had a new sparkle in her eyes and skip her in step after she finished rehab at IPC.
“We love the staff at IPC! I am so grateful for their true concern and passion for making Libby better. Dr Amber says it’s as if Libby read the book on what it looks like to achieve therapy results and did it!!” -Linda
Make a difference!
Each month we ask our POTM to choose an animal related organization to spotlight during his or her “reign”. Libby has asked us to tell you about The Caspian Fund.
Our Mission Statement: Providing families with a special needs pet that may need equipment, such as a cart, orthotic or prosthetic device in order to live an independent and full life. Our mission is only possible through generous donations from our supporters. Please consider making a donation so that we can continue to provide assistance to animals in need.