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Archives by Tag: therapeutic laser

March 2020- Dee

9 months ago · · Comments Off on March 2020- Dee · Chicago, Chicago's Patient of the Month, Patient of the Month, Rehabilitation ·, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Meet our March Patient Of The Month, Dee, who practically grew up in our clinic because her mom was an employee!  Since Dee was friendly and always around, she was often used to train new therapists and demonstrate new techniques.  As she got older, she unfortunately developed back and elbow issues, but they were successfully managed because of her regular therapy sessions which consisted of underwater treadmill, exercise, massage, and laser.

Last spring she decided to up the ante and injure her knee.  On examination, Dr. Martin suspected a partial CCL tear, so off to the surgeon she went.  Her surgery was postponed due to other health issues, so pre-hab therapies such as exercise, massage, laser and acupuncture were started to manage pain and strengthen her other limbs.  She eventually had a Tibial Plateau Leveling Osteotomy (TPLO) in November 2019, performed by Dr. David Wilson at Blue Pearl Pet Hospital.

“Dee was always so patient with me when I started training at IPC.  She allowed me to practice my exercise and massage techniques and was always willing to give me lots of kisses!  It was an honor to treat her post TPLO surgery and I am so proud of how far she’s progressed since starting the program!  I am still seeing improvements with her and am excited to see how much stronger she gets; no more injuries though!” -Rika, Dee’s primary therapist

Massage, laser, Assisi Loop treatments, and lots and lots of icing were started immediately following surgery to reduce inflammation, swelling at the surgical site and manage her pain.  Due to her conformation, the repair angle was steep, so she was put on extra restriction- which she fortunately didn’t mind.

One month post-op, her team felt she ready to start active therapies to help regain muscle mass, so she progressed to underwater treadmill and therapeutic exercise. While Dee isn’t the biggest fan of the underwater treadmill, she can be bribed to stay up front with peanut butter. Three months later, Dee was given the clearance by Dr. Wilson to return to normal activity!  The collaboration and open communication between her surgeon and rehab team contributed greatly to her successful recovery.

“Dee is a treasure who was my first patient at IPC!  She has always been a bit of an overachiever when it comes to hurting herself, so she keeps us busy!  Dee never fails to make us laugh- we love her so much”  -Dr. Kelli Martin

Dee was as adopted as a puppy after her foster parents knew they couldn’t let her go.  Her daily life involves stalking her cat siblings, wuh-wuhing for food, cuddling and being the laziest pit bull around.  She recently started competing in Nosework competitions, which has helped keep her mind active while recovering. Dee can’t wait to go on pack walks in the spring and thanks to her therapy, she’ll be able to keep up with her buds!

“I am incredibly grateful for the amazing care Dee has received over the years as I was fortunate to have the best rehab team at my disposal.  I can’t imagine what her mobility would look like without them- they are simply the best!” -Liz

Make A Difference

Each month we ask our POTM to choose an animal related organization to spotlight during his or her “reign”. Dee’s family has asked us to tell you about CRISP.

Chicagoland Rescue Intervention and Support Program (“CRISP”) provides low or no-cost services to help Chicago pet owners keep their pets rather than surrendering them to the city shelter. If pets cannot be kept by their owners, then CRISP will network to help place them immediately with a rescue group or no-kill shelter to bypass the city shelter completely. 

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February 2020- Lottie & Joey

10 months ago · · Comments Off on February 2020- Lottie & Joey · Chicago, Chicago's Patient of the Month, Patient of the Month, Rehabilitation ·, , , , , , , , , ,

“Lottie and Joey are both rescues from Chicago French Bulldog Rescue (CFBR).  Lottie was rescued from a puppy mill when she was 11-months old and has been living the good life for the last five years!  She has come a long way from the scared and shut down pup she was when she was saved. Joey’s previous owner surrendered him to the rescue, and he joined his new family about four years ago.  He is a sweet, sensitive boy who wants nothing more than to be loved.  Because Lottie and Joey are irresistible (as are all Frenchies), their parents were foster failures and ended up adopting them.

IPC was recommended to their parents when Lottie and Joey started to show signs of the health issues Frenchies are prone to get.  They couldn’t be happier with the care Lottie and Joey have received over the last couple of years.  Joey (who can be a little grump) gets so excited when his mom tells him it’s time to go to therapy and see Emma.  He will dance in circles on his way out the door, and he will snort, grunt, and screech with excitement when he arrives at IPC (especially when he hears Emma’s voice).  Not only do Lottie and Joey love Emma, they appreciate all the staff’s kindness, patience, and knowledge about the breed and their issues.  IPC has even taught their mom some exercises to do with them at home, although that’s not as fun as being in the gym or on the treadmill at IPC!

IPC has helped Lottie and Joey become physically stronger and more active.  It has also helped with their socialization skills; Lottie, especially, has learned to trust others and has learned lots of fancy tricks.  It’s given them both a boost in confidence, and it gives them a chance to have fun and get exercise.  Above all, they feel (and look) better and have a much better quality of life.  Joey absolutely loves hydrotherapy and getting all the peanut butter while he struts his stuff on the treadmill-Lottie, not so much.  Joey can also be a real showoff in the gym, but Lottie is more focused and is determined to do exactly what Emma wants and more!  She will do anything for those yummy treats and a little massage/laser after!

Lottie and Joey are very content with sunbathing/fighting over the best sun spot in the room and snuggling with their humans.  However, Lottie often loves to hang with all the neighbors’ dogs, to go do volunteer work for CFBR, and to boss her brother around.  Joey loves to snuggle on his mom’s lap and binge watch TV.  He is a homebody, but every once in a while, he enjoys going to a bar and eating all the things off the floor (forget being social; he’s just there for the snacks!)”

“Joey and Lottie are so great to work with, but couldn’t be more different. Joey can’t control his excitement and loves showing off which Lottie is more serious and focused when it comes to her sessions!”  -Emma

Make A Difference

Each month we ask our POTM to choose an animal related organization to spotlight during his or her “reign”.  Lottie and Joey have asked us to tell you about the organization that saved their lives, Chicago French Bulldog Rescue.

Chicago French Bulldog Rescue (CFBR) was launched to protect French Bulldogs from neglect, abuse, loss of family and theft. We rescue them from animal shelters and puppy mills. We help families and individuals that can no longer care for their Frenchies. We are shepherds of the breed working to educate about French Bulldogs and most importantly, placing rescued Frenchies into loving homes.

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January 2020- Mr. Bennet

11 months ago · · Comments Off on January 2020- Mr. Bennet · Homer Glen, Homer Glen's Patient of the Month, Patient of the Month, Rehabilitation ·, , , , , , , ,

Mr. Bennet is one of our long-time patients, so it’s only appropriate that he gets the honor of being the first Patient of the Month in 2020!   We met Mr. Bennet two years ago when his family was looking for options to keep him more comfortable and mobile.   It was noted on exam that he had hindlimb weakness and loss of coordination.   He had also developed bilateral hip and carpal (wrist) arthritis. Strengthening and pain management modalities such as underwater treadmill, therapeutic exercise, laser and massage were recommended.   His family noticed an improvement in his strength and coordination right away!

“Mr. Bennet is a wonderful dog who can definitely be stubborn in his older age as he would much rather lay on the bed and Assisi mat for his laser and massage treatments instead of exercising or walking in the underwater treadmill.  I feel that we have achieved our goal of keeping him independently mobile every time he walks through our doors.  Whether it’s because of grumpy old man personality or him carrying his leash and walking himself back up to the front, there’s never a dull moment when Mr. Bennet is around!” -Michelle 

“Bennet came from Heritage Kennel in 2008 after our daughter asked for a German Shepherd for her 10th birthday.  The Chicago Police Department wanted the puppy, but our family got there first!  From the beginning, he was a “miracle dog” who survived multiple health issues. He had emergency surgery following his neuter procedure, had a hemilaminectomy in 2009 due to a congenital dorsal spine dermal cyst and contracted leptospirosis despite being vaccinated.”

I honestly couldn’t think of a dog more deserving of the patient of the month title than Mr. Bennet. He is practically our mascot since he comes in to see us more than any other patient.  Mr. Bennet is a gentle giant and teddy bear of a German Shepherd and it always brightens my day to see him on my schedule.  Enjoy your moment in the spotlight!!! -Tiffany

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January 2020- June

11 months ago · · Comments Off on January 2020- June · Chicago, Chicago's Patient of the Month, Patient of the Month, Rehabilitation ·, , , ,

It’s 2020, and what better way to ring in the New Year than introduce our Patient Of The Month, June!  June started slowing down as she aged but became almost immobile according to her mom after she lost her best friend Bruce last year.  At the recommendation of a fellow pug friend, June came to us for an evaluation last March as her parents were looking to improve her mobility and endurance.

June was prescribed a program which included pain control modalities such as acupuncture, massage and laser.  Within a month she was moving better than she had in the past year!  June’s parents were also taught home exercises which are done religiously since she loves to “werk werk werk werk werk”.

“We love the combined therapies approach as well as the way the staff works together!” -June’s parents

While June loves everyone, she has formed a special relationship with her therapist Renee. “June whimpers with glee when we park by IPC and runs in to find her, wag her curly tail and give her kisses. The absolute sweetest is massage when June kisses Renee as she releases tense areas”.

“The daily life of June involves waking up and demanding food right away – all that working out has her hungry all the time! She then cuddles with her dad (her favorite person in the whole world) or by the fireplace and goes into work at EDGE Athlete Lounge – (that’s right, we have pugs as gym dogs). When at work, June can be found cuddling in her pug nest, barking at Members for food or posing for pictures.  She likes to do her therapy in the afternoon and usually wraps up the night by taking a nightly steam shower (good for her lungs and throat!) and curling up in bed with her favorite pillow, little brother Tank.”

If you want to see more of June and her ridiculous younger brother Tank, you should follow them on Instagram at @pugcovery!  As an added bonus, you get to see June rocking her home exercises.

Make A Difference

Each month we ask our POTM to choose an animal related organization to spotlight during his or her “reign”.  June has asked us to tell you about Northern Illinois Pug Rescue & Adoption (NIPRA)

Northern Illinois Pug Rescue and Adoption, Inc. (NIPRA) is a 501c3 non-profit organization that exists to assist the community in placing any needy Pug dog in a permanent, loving home. All adoption fees and donations go solely for the rescue, care, and placement of mistreated, unwanted or homeless Pugs.

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November 2019- Bailey

1 year ago · · Comments Off on November 2019- Bailey · Homer Glen, Homer Glen's Patient of the Month, Patient of the Month, Rehabilitation ·, , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Bailey

Bailey came to Integrative Pet Care Homer Glen in April 2019 after a rough recovery from tibial tuberosity advancement (TTA) surgery to repair his torn right cranial cruciate ligament (CCL).  Bailey recovered well from a previous surgery in 2016 to repair his torn left CCL, so his owner knew he had to do something.    After reading reviews about our clinic, Dave decided to make an evaluation where he met with Dr. Amber Ihrke.   In that first appointment it was noted that Bailey was non-weight bearing on his right rear leg and was very uncomfortable with examination of the right knee, which had been this way for months. 

Our goals were to address his discomfort and start his recovery to a functional gait.  After being put on oral anti-inflammatory medication, supplements, going home with an Assisi loop, and coming to us for laser therapy, he started feeling better.  Once his pain was under control, Bailey was able to move onto active therapies like underwater treadmill and therapeutic exercises.

“Bailey, who has a reputation for being quite the ladies’ man, quickly became an IPC favorite” says Tiffany.  He is always happy, always smiling, and always beyond thrilled to be at IPC hanging out with his therapists and his good attitude is contagious.  According to Michelle, “Katie, Tiffany, and I have to fight to have him on our schedule, but are glad to see him in the building regardless of who has him!”

“With an aggressive rehabilitation program over the course of 4 months, Bailey went from only placing about 3% body weight (normal 20%) on his right rear limb to 15%!  Bailey was able to return to a functional 4-limb gait and his comfort is much improved!” -Dr. Ihrke 

“Bailey has come a long way in his treatment plan, both in overall attitude and range of motion.  He continues to make small improvements, as well as maintain the strength and flexibility he gained by continuing to see us as part of his maintenance plan.   It’s amazing what you can get a big ole’ lab to do for peanut butter and beef liver!” -Katie

“The amazing team at IPC have many tools in their bag to help with just about any disorder or problem.  Don’t give up on your pet without taking them to IPC first, they deserve a second opinion and second chance!  Bailey is living a normal life with little to no pain, and I feel he will remain that way for the rest of his life thanks to IPC.” -Dave

Here are some videos of Bailey:

Bailey rocking it in the underwater treadmill!

Bailey enjoying the great outdoors!

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November 2019-Finn

1 year ago · · Comments Off on November 2019-Finn · Chicago, Chicago's Patient of the Month, Patient of the Month, Rehabilitation ·, , , , , , , , , , , ,

Finn

After having surgery to repair a torn cranial cruciate ligament (CCL) in September 2018, Finn was referred to us by his primary care veterinarian. He had an evaluation where it was noted that he was painful, barely placing weight on his leg and had lost a significant amount of muscle.  Finn completed 8 weeks of rehabilitation, but showed only slight improvement and began to show neurological signs.  He was referred to a neurologist, who determined that he actually had a torn meniscus.

Finn went back to his veterinarian who repaired the tear, but he unfortunately did not improve.  Finally we referred him to Dr. David Wilson, DVM, DACVS-SA at Blue Pearl Pet Hospital to remove his hardware and revise the surgery in May.

Finn came back for a recheck in August and he had improved greatly.  After 4 weeks of twice weekly therapies, Finn showed incredible progress and was able to wean off his pain medications.  After 8 weeks he looked so good that he was able to graduate to a more maintenance level of once weekly therapies consisting of underwater treadmill and exercise/massage/laser!

“Finn is one of my favorite patients and it feels so great to see the improvement he’s made over the past year.  It’s awesome to see him back to being his old goofy self!”  -Renee, one of Finn’s therapists

Finn was adopted from Chicago Canine Rescue in 2012 when Maria and her family were looking to add a family member after losing their previous dog.  Maria quickly fell in love with “Brownie” who was listed as a small dog.  7 years later, the small, timid dog named Brownie is now a 115 lb, outgoing dog named Finn.

“After a year, 3 surgeries and many therapy sessions, Finn is pain free, medication free and running and jumping just like his old self! Finn boards on his therapy days and when I come to pick him up he does not want to leave!  Special shout out to the Patient Service Coordinators for the tremendous welcome that he always gets. That’s why IPC, you are ALL AMAZING!” -Maria, Finn’s dedicated mom

“A day in the life of Finn….Wake up on the couch…go lay on the deck….chase the squirrels (been a while since he has been able to do that. He actually caught one the other day, I am sorry to say)….go potty…back to laying on the deck…eat breakfast…go in the house to lay on his chair by the window…bark at every dog that walks down the street…either sleep on that chair or get in the car and go to therapy and have the best day…eat dinner…have a couple treats…lay on the deck…go for a walk….lay on his bed waiting for me to go up to bed so he can have the couch…to go to sleep for the night”

Make A Difference

Each month we ask our POTM to choose an animal related organization to spotlight during his or her “reign”.  Finn has asked us to tell you about the organization that saved his life, Chicago Canine Rescue.

Chicago Canine Rescue Foundation exists to give many of these animals a second chance at a forever family. We love the underdog! 

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September 2019- Lily

1 year ago · · Comments Off on September 2019- Lily · Homer Glen, Homer Glen's Patient of the Month, Patient of the Month, Rehabilitation ·, , , , , , , , , , , ,

Lily

Lily came to us after a two month history of right rear lameness that was diagnosed as a cranial cruciate ligament (CCL) injury and a patellar luxation. By using a stance analyzer, we were able to determine that Lily was only putting 5% of her body weight on her right rear limb (normal is 20%).  Her owners wanted to try a conservative treatment option to see if we could get Lily to walk better.  Her therapeutic plan over 8 weeks consisted of pain management modalities and osteoarthritis disease-modifying medication.  At the end of her plan, Lily showed no lameness and improved her weight-bearing on the left rear limb to 23%!  Lily is a great example of how conservative management with some knee injuries can lead to excellent outcomes.  

“Lily is a sweet, rambunctious dog with a lot of personality in a little package. Despite not liking the water at all, she walked in the underwater treadmill very well, and it was amazing to see how much she progressed over 8 weeks despite her stubborn attitude!”          -Michelle, Lily’s therapist

Lily’s story starts in 2015 when she was adopted from Indiana Petite Paws Rescue Angels.  “Lily was a tiny, six-year-old little girl who only weighed four pounds.  She was spoiled and did not want to share her new home with another dog as she was used to being the only child.  While she likes to play with toys and fetch, she also likes to snuggle under the covers and watch TV.  Lily is she is a ‘diva dog’ who does not like cold or rainy weather since it spoils her hair.” -Carol

When Lily started experiencing lameness, her parents booked an appointment right away at Integrative Pet Care Homer Glen since they had a great experience at the Chicago location with a previous dog.  They hoped to treat her condition conservatively to avoid surgery.

“After 4 weeks her progress was impressive, and after an additional 4 she was almost back to normal.  We cannot thank the Integrative Pet Care staff enough!” -Carol

Make a difference

Each month we ask our POTM to choose an animal related organization to spotlight during his or her “reign”.  Lily has asked us to tell you about The Caspian Foundation

Our goal is to provide 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.

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September 2019- Floki

1 year ago · · Comments Off on September 2019- Floki · Chicago, Chicago's Patient of the Month, Patient of the Month, Rehabilitation ·, , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Floki

Floki was rushed to the ER last April when he became wobbly and painful. An MRI revealed that he had Intervertebral Disc Disease (IVDD) and a hemilaminectomy was recommended and performed immediately.  Unfortunately all of this left him unable to use his hind limbs.

Amanda did research and found that we had a great reputation for working with special needs animals!  Floki came to us shortly after his surgery and was prescribed an intensive rehabilitation program which consisted of exercise, laser, underwater treadmill, and acupuncture.  His prognosis was guarded, but that didn’t stop him from trying his hardest and his dedicated mom Amanda was more than willing to do whatever it took.

We became fast friends since he started coming three times weekly for therapy! Floki’s progress was slow in the beginning, but he made promising improvements every week. He needed full assistance in the underwater treadmill to ambulate and was unable to push himself into a standing position.

A cart was also recommended to aid in his mobility which he took to quickly. He also hitches a ride in his wagon where he loves going on the 606, Humboldt Park and the dog beach. Floki has continued to make amazing progress at every session, and most of all he LOVES his therapies!

Floki continues to make huge strides every week and is now able to walk in the treadmill on his own and has even attempted to take steps on land!!  His progress is also due to mom’s dedication to his home care.   Floki has an amazing (and bossy) attitude which definitely played a part in his progress.

“First let me say that we are grateful for and really like all of the staff at IPC.  Floki’s veterinarians, therapists and the patient service coordinators have been amazing.  You all have been so patient and understanding of the struggle it was in the beginning and continue to be so nice and helpful!! Floki and I both would love to give a shout out to his therapist Renee for the extra time and love she has shown him.  Renee has really been so helpful in making sure that we go home with handouts explaining our exercises and videos showing progress.  She has answered every question I had about feedings, and how to learn to properly express/potty him.  She has also coached me to be more relaxed and aware that if I show my frustrations to Floki, he will sense that and be frustrated also.  I’m so thankful and so much more confident in caring for Floki because all that Renee has talked me through and shown me.  She has gone above and beyond for us!” -Amanda

Make A Difference

Each month we ask our POTM to choose an animal related organization to spotlight during his or her “reign”.  Floki has asked us to tell you about Road Dogs & Rescue.

Road Dogs & Rescue is a registered 501(c)3 non-profit organization in California focused on rescuing and rehabbing medical bulldogs, puppies with birth defects and spreading the message of love and compassion towards all animals, both locally and internationally.


Pages

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August 2019- Beau Jangles & Coco Chanel

1 year ago · · Comments Off on August 2019- Beau Jangles & Coco Chanel · Homer Glen, Homer Glen's Patient of the Month, Rehabilitation ·, , , , , , , , , , , ,

Meet the fantastic French Bulldog pair, Beau Jangles & Coco Chanel.  These two seem to capture everyone’s hearts wherever they go and IPC is no exception. They are so popular that therapists Katie, Tiffany and Michelle “fight” over who gets to see them!

Beau Jangles came to us with left rear lameness.  It was determined that the cause was cranial cruciate disease and medial patellar luxation which would require surgery to correct.   Beau had a tibial plateau leveling osteotomy (TPLO) surgery and started therapy within days.  He did excellent with his treatment program and was back to almost full weight bearing within eight weeks!

Coco was diagnosed with  bilateral hip dysplasia.  While rehabilitation cannot reverse hip dysplasia and osteoarthritis, targeted therapy can address pain, compensatory issues and improve gait biomechanics. Coco was prescribed weekly sessions of underwater treadmill, therapeutic laser, massage, therapeutic exercises and Adequan injections.  After an eight week program, she was not only more comfortable, but was able to go on 20 minute walks with only occasional lameness.

“It was amazing to see how fast Beau  recovered from his TPLO surgery with rehab, and even though Coco’s hips are terrible on x-ray, you would never tell by looking at her since she runs around like a maniac!” – Michelle, BS, CVT

“The day they successfully completed their rehabilitation programs was the happiest and most devastating day for us.  We were all excited that they were back to normal function, but also sad that they wouldn’t be able to see them weekly anymore! We are all counting the days until their 30 day rechecks” -Tiffany, CCRA

Kris brought Coco home after losing her beloved Boston Terrier, Gizmo.  Despite her initial sweet demeanor, Coco went from cute and cuddly to a fun loving and crazy girl within the first couple months.  Later, Kris decided that Coco needed a friend and brought Beau home who has been calm and loving since he was a puppy.  “Although Beau can give Coco a run for her money, she is the alpha dog who demands all the toys to be her own”. -Kris

After Coco was diagnosed with hip dysplasia, I was looking for alternative care and got very excited with all that IPC has to offer, especially in terms of pain management. These are all the things I would absolutely and do for myself, so having it available for my beloved dogs is fantastic! -Kris


Beau and Coco have since graduated from their formal programs, but their home exercise programs are crucial to their continual success.  “Their mom does great with their home programs, which is hard with one dog let alone two!” -Katie, CVT, CCRVN, CVPP

Everyone treated us like we were their most important clients.  When Dr. Amber got right on the floor with Beau instead of putting him on a cold metal table, I knew I made the right choice.   Her clothes were even covered in fur from her other patients which showed me that she cared- that meant the world to me. 

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August 2019- Sumo & Kiko

1 year ago · · Comments Off on August 2019- Sumo & Kiko · Chicago, Chicago's Patient of the Month, Patient of the Month, Rehabilitation, Sports Medicine ·, , , , , , , , , , ,

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.

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