Wanted: Innovative veterinary care for geriatric cranes.
With many of our captive cranes getting older, our veterinary staff is learning new techniques to care for our aging population. In December we shared “Belmont’s” story – an 18-year-old Hooded Crane with a history of osteoarthritis in her right tarsus joint (similar to an ankle in humans) and an injury to her flexor tendon, which is keeping her from extending the toes on her right foot (click here to read the story).
To help keep Belmont’s toes in a normal position and help her walk, we’ve fitted her with a special bandage on her right foot. After a neurology consult and CT scan at the University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Veterinary Medicine last fall, we decided to add to Belmont’s treatment with cold laser therapy on her injured leg.
Belmont is receiving the series of cold laser treatments through a generous donation by Dr. Doughty and the Hill-Dale Veterinary Clinic of Baraboo, Wisconsin. This therapy is a noninvasive procedure that uses light from a laser wand to stimulate cell regeneration and increase blood circulation to the area being treated. The entire procedure usually lasts for only five or six minutes – click here to view a video of the procedure. Belmont has been tolerating her treatments well, and we also have been doing some physical therapy on her leg. We are all very hopeful that Belmont’s treatments will be a success!
Story submitted by Sue Lakin, International Crane Foundation Veterinary Technician.