Meet Sumo & Kiko, our dynamic Shiba Inu duo who keep us on our toes every Tuesday morning! “Sumo has been a patient since his first cruciate surgery nearly 10 years ago and although the surgeon told us rehabilitation therapy was not necessary, our dog trainer recommended exploring options if we really wanted Sumo to get back to his prior athletic level. We were so happy with all the help you gave us, it was only natural to bring our other dog Kiko for sports conditioning and ultimately rehabilitation after she had patella and cruciate surgery.
Despite their surgeries, Sumo and Kiko have had long and healthy agility careers thanks to rehabilitation and ongoing maintenance program which we especially appreciate. It not only allows our dogs to stay in great shape for their athletic endeavors, but also helps them as they age. As an example, Sumo has had chronic kidney disease for the past year and a half. That disease often leads to muscle wasting, particularly in a dog’s hind quarters, as the dog gets less and less active. Our primary vet has expressed pleasant surprise at how little atrophy Sumo has suffered and we attribute much of that to his maintenance program which includes hydrotherapy.
We fell in love with the Shiba Inu breed in 1990 based on a photo in a book of 450 dog breeds which was long before anyone knew what a Shiba was. After our first Shiba died from cancer, we searched for the right breeder with the right puppy. Sumo, who is now 13.5 years old, has been part of our family since he was 4 months old. As everyone on your staff who has worked with Sumo knows, he is classic Shiba: incredibly smart, aloof, stubborn, independent, loathes water, and wants nothing to do with anyone unless he is handsomely rewarded. He is the type of dog who makes you earn his affection, and once you do he will make you feel very special.
Kiko is a rescue Shiba who I met during her intake evaluation at Midwest Shiba Inu Rescue and decided to keep rather than put her into their formal program. She came to us as a wild and out of control jumping bean at the age of 15 months. She’s now 10 and is the Yang to Sumo’s Yin. She loves everyone, gives kisses, wags her tail when she greets you and is anxious to please (although she loves rewards too.) She has the smarts and hatred of water that is classic Shiba, but she gives her affection freely.
Kiko is our agility super star. In 2018, she was ranked the #3 agility Shiba in the country by the AKC (American Kennel Club) and has competed twice in the Agility Invitational in Orlando where only the top 5 dogs of each breed are invited. She has earned four agility championships, which is something that only five Shibas have ever done. She also has top titles in Rally and is close to completing an Obedience title.
Sumo has Obedience titles, two top Rally titles, numerous agility titles. When he had to retire from those athletically demanding sports at the age of 11, he started nosework. He now has the AKCs Advanced titles in exteriors, interiors, containers and buried hides as well as nosework titles from NACSW (National Association of Canine Scent Work) and UKC (United Kennel Club).
Kiko recently had a TPLO surgery for a torn cruciate, so her days include a morning walk, a little bitey-face time with our 4 year old shiba, breakfast, about 10 minutes of rehab homework and then “free time” until late afternoon when she gets about another 10-15 minutes of rehab time (along with some tricks training), an evening walk, dinner, more bitey-face play, a late night walk and sleep. Tuesdays she goes to IPC for therapy and Thursdays she goes to Rally class where she is learning new skills for a competition in September. Sumo’s schedule is almost identical, but he doesn’t play bitey-face (that’s beneath him). He also goes to IPC for therapy on Tuesday and Nosework class on Thursday where he shows off how smart he is (he no longer competes).
One thing I’d like to mention is how important I think IPC has been in keeping both our very active dogs healthy. When Sumo tore his cruciate at a young age, both his primary care vet and surgeon told us to expect him to tear the other cruciate within two years or less and to expect arthritis in that knee by age 6. Well, thanks to great rehab and continued maintenance, the other leg’s cruciate didn’t tear for more than 5 years. Plus, it kept his arthritis at bay as he was able to compete in agility and rally until he turned 11! We were warned that Kiko’s other knee would require surgery if we didn’t keep her in good shape. Even though it was her other cruciate that tore, her recovery from surgery was easier since she was in great shape going in.” -Amy
Make a difference!
Each month we ask our POTM to choose an animal related organization to spotlight during his or her “reign”. Sumo & Kiko have asked us to tell you about Midwest Shiba Inu Rescue.
Midwest Shiba Inu Rescue (MSIR) was founded in 2002 and is a a registered 501(c)3 non-profit and licensed rescue. We help to save and place Shiba Inus throughout the Midwest, including Minnesota, Nebraska, Iowa, Missouri, Kansas, Wisconsin, Michigan, Illinois and Indiana.
Brady’s love for launching himself off a deck after birds landed him at the vet’s office to repair one of his bilateral torn cranial cruciate ligaments (CCL) last fall. At the suggestion of their daughter, who is a physical therapist, Brady’s parents made an appointment at Integrative Pet Care- Homer Glen.
Brady had surgery on his right stifle (knee) first and when that was strong enough, he went under to repair the left. “From the first day we saw him post operation, he was doing amazing! Thanks to the rehabilitation of his right leg, his recovery was much quicker and now both legs are stronger than ever” says therapist Michelle.
Another aspect of Brady’s program was weight loss which he accomplished under the care of therapist Katie who is a Purina Weight Coach- “he really is a great example of how weight loss can greatly improve the recovery process”.
What a difference you made to Brady’s life. He loved his visits and has gained back almost all mobility that he had before surgery. -Brady’s mom
You would never know it today, but Brady was a ‘monster’ when he was little! With lots of training, he calmed down and transformed into a friendly and sweet dog.
Meet our July Patient of the Month Atticus, who is a six year old Frenchton (French Bulldog/Boston Terrier mix). Atticus started having trouble with his spine three years ago, but recovered well with rest and pain medication. Unfortunately he suffered a setback in April of 2018 which left him completely unable to walk. He was rushed to a neurologist who performed a ventral slot surgery which decompresses the cervical spinal cord.
Atticus remained unable to walk after surgery, but regained mobility after a week. Rehabilitation was recommended and he walked through our doors a month later.
Despite everything that he had been through, Atticus looked pretty good! His rehabilitation program focused on pain management, fine tuning his mobility, and strengthening. He started coming twice weekly for underwater treadmill, exercise/laser, and acupuncture.
Atticus looked better and better to the IPC team at every visit and pain management modalities such as acupuncture and laser were able to be weaned out. Underwater treadmill and exercise sessions would now be the focus for strengthening.
Atticus continued to do well, so he was graduated to a maintenance level of rehabilitation. He now comes once weekly for underwater treadmill (which he loves) with acupuncture and a exercise/laser combo session every 6 weeks. Atticus is an IPC superstar!
“Atticus marches through our doors ready to WORK and does everything that is asked of him. He is a dream patient who never lets me down!” -Laura, CCRA
Atticus can usually be found patrolling the neighborhood with his mom Mary- something that she was worried he’d never be able to do again.
“Integrative Pet came in at a very difficult time after a spinal surgery for a ruptured disc. They have graced Atticus with the strength and comfort in order to recover beautifully and now he thinks he can fly! With the love that he’s been given at Integrative Pet I believe he can!” -Mary
“Elmore came to us three years ago when we were looking for a puppy. It was important for us to find one from a breeder who was part of the Newfoundland Club of America, did proper health testing on her dogs, and showed as well as participated in the Newfoundland events. We were hoping that we could take part in these activities with Elmore, but unfortunately this was not in the cards for him.
Elmore always seemed slow to rise, lazy, never jumped on people or on furniture, and was never super active. I always felt something was off, so because of this we became patients at IPC to maintain and build his strength.
By the time he was 2 years old he had gone through rehabilitation following tightrope surgeries to repair both torn cranial cruciate ligaments (CCLs), as well as platelet rich plasma (PRP) injections. After he was cleared by his surgeon we felt optimistic about his future.
However, days before Christmas, he was in the backyard running, and went down. He had ruptured his T13-L1 discs and was fully paralyzed in his back legs because of this. We were devastated and rushed him out to Veterinary Specialty Center in Buffalo Grove to see Dr. Mitch Robbins immediately. An MRI revealed a type 3 intervertebral disc rupture at T13-L1 with no evidence of persistent compression of the spinal cord. The care Elmore received from the VSC team was phenomenal.
He did not undergo surgery as he had no compression of his spine. He was given a 75% chance to walk again within 3 weeks, otherwise he would not regain that function. Our goal was clear, he would need IPC to help save his life.
We had been going to IPC for several years with our other Newfoundland Cass ever since Dr. Robbins recommended it as the place to go for rehabilitation in the city. There was no other place we would go to for this type of work for our dog. I have told people during this time that while you all are great at everything you do, I truly feel that your Neuro cases are your “bread and butter”.
Watching a giant breed who was once paralyzed in the rear now race over cavaletti poles and run around the gym, albeit somewhat “drunkenly”, is all the proof I need. IPC’s thorough program for Elmore, which consists of exercise, underwater treadmill, acupuncture, massage, laser, Adequan, NMES therapy and more, has been amazing. It was the exact combination needed. Throughout all of this, every single person from the front desk, to the therapists to the vets have been a part of a team dedicated to helping us and him.
“I always look forward to finding and creating new challenges each time I work with Elmore. He’s always ready to work hard and make us proud. Big shout out to Ashley and Andrew- their commitment to his recovery has been truly inspiring!” -Elmore’s main therapist and biggest fan, Laura
Today Elmore likes to get up and go on his walks around the block, come home for breakfast, and then take a several hour nap. After that he’s back out on walkies where he may bark at a few things and take some pictures for his instagram account, where he is quite popular. He completes his day with dinner, more naps and of course visits to IPC where he goes roughly three times a week. Sometimes he gets to go out to different stores, parks and he LOVES car rides etc… But it is a bit more difficult now that he isn’t as mobile as he used to be.” -Ashley, Elmore’s incredible mom
One thing I can tell other people going through this is to try to stay calm! It is so hard, don’t give up and don’t give up on your dog- some days you will want to, and that is ok. Listen to the therapists at IPC and do the work at home, it is the only way they will keep getting better.
Make a difference!
Each month we ask our POTM to choose an animal related organization to spotlight during his or her “reign”. Elmore has asked us to tell you about Bialy’s Wellness Foundation.
Bialy’s Wellness Foundation helps families and rescue organizations care for pets with special needs, particularly those with mobility issues from paralysis, amputation, neurological or birth defects, and other diagnosed ailments.
Moose an 11 year old Labrador Retriever who had surgery for a torn cranial cruciate ligament (CCL) in 2015. His recovery was not going well, so his mom did research and found Integrative Pet Care of Homer Glen.
Moose met with the IPC HG team and a formal rehabilitation plan was created which included underwater treadmill, therapeutic exercise, massage, and laser therapy. Once completed, a maintenance program, which consisted of underwater treadmill and laser, was recommended to address his arthritis.
“Integrative Pet Care has helped in so many ways; his movement strength and all around attitude has improved” says his mom Kim. Best of all, Moose is back to his favorite activity, swimming!
“It’s always a pleasure to start my Saturday mornings with Moose as he’s always in a good mood and is beyond excited to see me! We have been helping him remain comfort, improve range of motion, and increase weight bearing on his left hind leg. He is one of our sweetest, happiest, most loving, and high energy patients. He’s an old man who is young at heart” -Tiffany
One thing is very clear when it comes to Moose, he’s just one happy guy who has a love for life. “I started working here when Moose began his third maintenance plan. It was amazing to see how much he still liked coming to see us. It’s a good feeling to know that rehab can continue to benefit a dog’s life.” -Michelle
Make a difference!
Each month we ask our POTM to choose an animal related organization to spotlight during his or her “reign”. Moose has asked us to tell you about Tender Loving Care.
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.
“We adopted Jay Jay through an animal rescue on August 16th, 2018 when he was 8 months old, because I was 5 months pregnant and wanted a companion. We saw him on petfinder a few months prior and once a few other things fell through, we went for it when we saw he was still available. He was my best friend and stayed by my side throughout the remainder of my pregnancy, but I knew something was wrong with him. He cried when we would pick him up and he wouldn’t jump, which was weird since he was a puppy.
After seeing 2 different doctors, he was diagnosed with Legg-Calvé-Perthes Disease. A Femoral Head Osteotomy (FHO) surgery was scheduled 10 days before I gave birth. His surgeon recommended rehabilitation, which would be beneficial for his recovery. I used to work at an animal Hospital who referred to IPC Homer Glen, so I knew it would be a good place for him.” -Jay Jay’s mom
“Jay Jay came to us with a history of not being able to walk on his back legs for a few months…in fact, sometimes he would only walk on his front legs! We created an intensive therapy program which consisted of manual therapy, hydrotherapy, and therapeutic ultrasound. After 2 weeks he was consistently walking on his rear legs, within 4 weeks he was always walking on his rear legs, and 8 weeks later he was running and playing in the yard.” -Dr. Amber Ihrke
I am totally blown away by his recovery and the results we were able to achieve. He is such a little champ!!! -IPC therapist Tiffany
Jay has come very long way since starting with us. His sessions were so stressful since he had been in pain for so long that he would not allow anyone to touch him. As his program progressed, his pain level decreased and his mobility increased. Now when he comes to see us, he jumps in my lap and give kisses. This is not something he would have done at the start and it was amazing to see the transformation in him just by making him feel better! -IPC therapist Katie
I truly believe if it weren’t for the wonderful staff at IPC he wouldn’t be walking, let alone running on all 4 legs today.
Make a difference!
Each month we ask our POTM to choose an animal related organization to spotlight during his or her “reign”. Jay Jay has asked us to tell you about Villalobos Rescue Center.
According to Watson’s mom Kirsten, September 6, 2008 was the BEST DAY EVER! She met Watson at an animal shelter who was shy and nervous initially, but quickly warmed up to play with his new Golden Retriever brother Dylan. Once he successfully completed puppy training, it was recommended they get involved in dog sports like agility. He started training with Hawk City K9 in early 2009 which helped reinforce their training in a fun way and made them more of a team. They caught the agility bug and started competing in agility in 2015 and will compete in his first scent work competition shortly!
We started with IPC as Watson was getting older and I wanted to help maintain his strength and stamina. IPC came highly recommended for conditioning and we had come to know some from the team through agility and scent work. From our first go-round for conditioning, Watson was stronger and able to play longer and run faster. He also recovered faster from a busy weekend with less soreness.” -Kirsten
Unfortunately Watty tore his cranial cruciate ligament (CCL) which required a Tibial Plateau Leveling Osteotomy (TPLO) surgery in November 2018. He met with Dr. Deanne Zenoni and Laura who created a plan which included underwater treadmill, laser, massage, exercise, and chiropractic sessions.
“I trust the team to help keep Watty safe while recovering and rebuilding strength. During recovery, sessions were a stress-free happy break from our otherwise restricted recovery time at home. And he LOOOOVES his IPC team. As we continue to rebuild/maintain, IPC helps push us to new challenges. Watson’s “creative” mind loves new challenges (which sometimes includes finding new ways to cheat) but his therapists have his number.” -Kirsten
Watson was a pro at all his therapies and progressed quickly. He still continues coming for maintenance therapy since graduating from his formal program in February.
Watson enjoys sleeping-in and will abandon his bed only once he hears the sweet sound kibble in his bowl. He keeps an eye on the house and hood most of the day. He enjoys long walks reading the neighborhood paper (sniffing every tree, leaf, blade of grass, crack in the sidewalk, person walking by… ). Weekend morning walks were made for walks at the convergence of smells from at least 2 brunch spots at his favorite park.
While Watson is a master napper, he loves finding ways to get treats through his at-home exercises and learning new tricks that support his rehab.
Make a difference!
Each month we ask our POTM to choose an animal related organization to spotlight during his or her “reign”. In honor of his late brother Dylan, Watson has asked us to tell you about Charge Against Cancer.
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.
When the Stroup’s became empty nesters, they decided a companion animal would be a great additional their family, specifically a beagle. Buddy came from a reputable breeder in 2009 who had already socialized him with cats and children. He was a healthy dog until he tore both of his cranial cruciate ligaments (CCLs). Integrative Pet Care’s services were recommended by his surgeon at MedVet Chicago to speed up his recovery.
“We first met Buddy in early October 2018 following a tibial plateau leveling osteotomy (TPLO) procedure on his left rear leg. As he would also require another TPLO on the right side, it was advised he begin a rehabilitation program with weight loss in order to achieve the most successful outcome possible. Despite some residual post-operative stifle edema (swelling) and areas of discomfort elsewhere on his body due to the changes in his bio-mechanics, Buddy always seemed pretty happy to come in for his rehab visits!” -Dr. Melissa Trupia
After his second surgery, Buddy was prescribed an 8 week treatment plan which included therapeutic laser, massage, dry-needling, manual therapy, underwater treadmill, and therapeutic exercises. “Buddy came in after each of his knee surgeries which were performed roughly a month apart with significant bruising, swelling, and heat present at his knees. Laser therapy was performed at his first visit and significant improvements observed by his owners and therapists. At his second visit, there was a significant decrease in heat, swelling, and bruising leading me to term him the ‘laser poster dog.’ -Tiffany, Buddy’s main therapist
“After completing his formal treatment plan, Buddy continued with a maintenance plan to continue working on his sit posture, strengthening his rear limbs and improving his overall mobility during walks. Buddy is now walking around without showing signs of pain or discomfort in his rear limbs.” -Valerie
The staff at IPC has been informative and caring and Buddy gets excited when we are driving there!
Weezy is an almost 12 year old Pomeranian who originally reigns from Florida, but has lived in Chicago for 6 years. He’s had pretty severe luxating patellas for at least 5-6 years, so he grew accustomed to walking quite straight legged all the time. His mom Lindsay did extensive research, which she tends to do when it comes to anything Weezy related, into rehabilitation clinics and IPC just stuck out to her. “I love the variety of programs I saw offered, and they had great reviews!”
He met with Dr. Michelle Mason and rehabilitation therapist Renee who created a specific treatment plan to address his issues related to his luxating patellas. His program included therapeutic exercise, massage, laser, and underwater treadmill.
“Before we came to IPC, Weezy had been walking much slower on his walks, and started slipping often on the kitchen tile. We just completed his second 8 week program and Weezy is moving faster on his walks, slipping on the tile about 80% less, and actually sitting without kicking his legs out to the side. He has also improved on all of his at home exercises and starting to slowly shift more weight to his hind legs. We know this will be a long, slow, ongoing process but to see just slight improvement makes us ecstatic!” -Lindsay
Erin, Renee and Lindsey have all be so wonderful and Weezy wouldn’t be where he is today without them!
“Weezy has lived in 3 states, been on over 50 flights, and loves traveling with his mom and dad. In his spare time, you’ll likely find him napping, begging for belly rubs or asking us to throw his razzy ball. His favorite treats are freshly made popcorn, zucchini, and strawberries – but he recently was introduced to peanut butter which he can’t get enough of while doing his at home IPC exercises!”
Make a difference!
Each month we ask our POTM to choose an animal related organization to spotlight during his or her “reign”. Weezy has asked us to tell you about Bialy’s Wellness Foundation.
“Bialy’s Wellness Foundation helps families and rescue organizations care for pets with special needs, particularly those with mobility issues from paralysis, amputation, neurological or birth defects, and other diagnosed ailments.”