Meet Tessa, our November 2018 Pet of the Month! Tessa is a 14-year-old English Shepherd that first came to see us on 6/6/18. She had a chronic lameness issue with her left front limb and had developed progressive hind limb weakness more recently. We found evidence of arthritis in many of her joints as well as some neurologic deficits in her hind limbs. Tessa’s overall stamina was also pretty limited. She was sleeping more and not able to walk for very long distances.
As a result, Tessa’s rehabilitation had a slower introduction than most patients. We started with integrative medicine therapy sessions to get her more comfortable through easing her arthritic pain and muscle compensation issues. These sessions included therapies such as massage, class IV laser therapy, and acupuncture. We also fitted Tessa with a Help ‘Em Up Harness™ for additional assistance at home. Her Help ‘Em Up Harness allows her family to help her get into and out of the car and to help her stand up from laying down if she needs it.
Once Tessa was able to move better and with more comfort, we started slowly adding some structured and targeted exercises to help strengthen her core and limb muscles. Since starting rehabilitation, Tessa’s family has noticed that she has more energy. Tessa is exploring her yard more and taking some walks again. She has even started to play a little. Her Help ‘Em Up Harness has made her daily life much easier and she continues to make small improvements each time we see her. Tessa’s family is very happy to see her feeling more comfortable and enjoying her golden years.