While most people are familiar with acupuncture, many are unaware that laser acupuncture for cats is used to treat a variety of feline ailments and diseases ranging from general pain management to healing traumatic injuries to systemic illnesses like inflammatory bowel disease and kidney disease. Unlike traditional acupuncture, which uses needles to activate certain meridians/pressure points in a cat’s body, laser acupuncture utilizes the same pressure points but stimulates them via gentle light waves sent in the form of a laser (light amplification by stimulated emission rays) beam.
Laser acupuncture for cats is similar to acupuncture using needles, but it is considered more effective for certain cases such as open wounds or post-surgical wounds. In these cases, stimulation is beneficial, but we want to avoid penetrating tender skin or direct wound sites. It’s also the better option for cats and highly sensitive animals.
It’s important to note that the lasers used for this type of treatment do not cut or burn, and they do not inflict pain. In fact, the photons emitted during the treatment are considered cold, which is why this treatment modality is also referred to as cold laser therapy or low-level light therapy. It is most commonly used on cats, as well as very sensitive horses and dogs.
How does laser acupuncture for cats work?
The laser-version of acupuncture works similarly to acupuncture in general. However, unlike acupuncture with needles which penetrates the upper-skin levels and meridians, laser acupuncture for cats has the ability to send light energy into deeper tissue-layers including organs, bones and deep muscle tissue.
From a cat’s perspective, this light wave creates a slightly warm and tingly sensation— almost like massage therapy — and is never painful. In most cases, laser acupuncture takes place during very short sessions, lasting about 5 to 10 minutes on average (although some treatments require less time). Sessions are repeated weekly or monthly, or as indicated depending on the condition, depending on the cat’s needs.
During sessions, the veterinarian uses a specific cold laser to;
- · acutely focus the photon-beam at relevant points.
- · activate the cell’s mitochondria to generate healing.
- · stimulate specific nerve endings that send messages to the spinal cord and brain—normalizing autonomic nervous responses.
Click Here if you’d like to read a more detailed explanation of how laser acupuncture for cats positively affects feline anatomy and physiology.
Benefits of laser acupuncture for cats
Laser acupuncture for cats is most commonly used to treat:
- · Wounds
- · Post-surgical incisions
- · Sprains
- · Contusions
- · Infected wounds
- · Tendon and connective tissue injury or trauma
- · Muscular damage or issues
- · Bone fractures
- · Arthritis
- · Cancer
- Organic diseases like chronic renal failure
Its benefits include:
- · Stimulation of the mitochondria. You may remember from science classes that mitochondria are “the powerhouses of the cell.”When used at the right wave-length, laser acupuncture for cats stimulates these powerhouses, which then generate ATP referred to as “the energy carrier of life.” Increased ATP production supports the direct maintenance, repair and regeneration of healthy cell tissue.
- · Reduction of inflammation. A little inflammation is a good thing — it’s a natural immune system response. However, there’s a fragile tipping point and often our immune systems and our cats go into overdrive. When chronic or hyper-inflammation sets in, it stymies the natural healing process and can exacerbate pain receptors. A reduction in inflammation facilitates healing and reduces pain levels.
- · Increased blood flow. Inflammation and a compromised immune system— combined with a kitty that can’t move comfortably—result in a sluggish circulatory system. Increased blood flow supports cell oxygenation, nutrient absorption and detoxification which facilitate healing.
- · Pain management. Just like traditional acupuncture, laser acupuncture for cats is often used to facilitate pain management. It is torture to watch a cat suffering but it’s also unnerving to routinely administer pain medication that make him/her sluggish or that is known to have adverse reactions or cumulative toxic effects. Laser acupuncture has been proven to ease the pain. In a 2015 study, researchers discovered that “Laser acupuncture reduced postoperative analgesic requirements, [the need for pain med], in cats undergoing ovariohysterectomy.”
Each of these benefits of laser therapy benefits can reduce or even eliminate the need for potentially harmful medications and/or more invasive treatment options.
Laser Acupuncture for Cats is supported by Most Pet Insurance Carriers
Perhaps one of the most exciting things about laser acupuncture for cats is that it is an approved method of treatment by leading veterinary associations and organizations and is also an approved treatment modality by many pet insurance carriers. As a result, you may be partially or wholly reimbursed for the treatment costs.
Please contact us here at Wise and Wonderful Integrative Veterinary Clinic, or give us a call at 707-546-4646, to learn more about laser acupuncture for cats and their holistic treatment options. We’re dedicated to serving our clients – and their friendly caretakers – using the best that Western and Eastern medicine has to offer.