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Benefits of Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy for Pets

Hyperbaric oxygen therapy offers a wide range of benefits for pets. It enhances wound healing, reduces inflammation, and aids in recovery after surgery by increasing the amount of oxygen delivered to tissues. Our vets in Lithia Springs will discuss these benefits in this blog post.

What is hyperbaric oxygen therapy for pets?

Hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBOT) is a medical treatment that involves placing a patient in an oxygen chamber specially designed for pets, where they breathe pure oxygen at higher-than-atmospheric pressures. Originally developed for human medicine, HBOT has increasingly been adapted for veterinary use and provides significant benefits for various pet health conditions. The therapy enhances the body's natural healing processes, making it a valuable tool in veterinary care.

How does hyperbaric oxygen therapy work?

During a session in a hyperbaric oxygen chamber for dogs or other pets, your pet is placed inside a sealed chamber filled with pure oxygen. The increased pressure allows more oxygen in their lung to dissolve in the bloodstream and be delivered to tissues throughout the body. This high level of oxygen helps reduce inflammation, promote new tissue growth, and enhance the ability of white blood cells to fight infection.

Are there any side effects of hyperbaric oxygen therapy?

HBOT has proven highly efficient in treating various conditions in pets. Many pet owners and veterinarians report significant improvements in their pets' health after HBOT sessions. However, like any medical treatment, it is not without potential side effects. Some pets may experience mild discomfort due to pressure changes, but serious side effects are rare. It's essential to discuss any concerns with your veterinarian before starting treatment.

Conditions Treated with Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy

HBOT can be used to treat a wide range of conditions in pets. Here are some of the most common:

  • Wound healing: HBOT accelerates the healing of acute and chronic wounds by increasing oxygen supply to damaged tissues.
  • Infections: The high oxygen environment enhances the effectiveness of antibiotics and boosts the immune system's ability to fight off infections.
  • Inflammatory conditions: Conditions such as arthritis and inflammatory bowel disease can benefit from the anti-inflammatory effects of HBOT.
  • Post-surgical recovery: HBOT can reduce swelling and pain, speeding up recovery after surgery.
  • Neurological disorders: Pets with conditions like spinal cord injuries or traumatic brain injuries may experience improved function and reduced symptoms with HBOT.
  • Burns and skin grafts: HBOT enhances burn healing and improves the success rate of skin grafts by promoting healthy tissue growth.

Is it suitable for pets of all sizes?

Hyperbaric oxygen therapy can be used to treat pets of various sizes. Horses, goats, cats, and dogs have all been treated using hyperbaric therapy. Although the treatment is often used on cats and dogs, it can also be used in small animal medicine. The range of pet oxygen chambers available for sale enables veterinarians to consider options suitable for a wide range of animals.

Larger hyperbaric chambers can provide enough space for dogs and other large companion animals and could be helpful for other, less traditional, pets. Some chambers can treat multiple patients at once, allowing for the treatment of more than one animal at the same time.

How long does the hyperbaric treatment last?

The HBOT sessions for pets can vary based on the specific condition being treated, the severity of the condition, and the pet's individual needs. Generally, a single HBOT session for a pet typically lasts between 60 to 90 minutes.

How will my pet feel after a hyperbaric treatment?

The most common observation is deep sleep after treatment, either due to pain relief or deep relaxation. Some older dogs behave like they did in their younger years and want to run and play.

This is most often seen in dogs with significant osteoarthritis and joint disease, presumably due to the anti-inflammatory benefits. The duration of the effect varies. Additionally, many dogs are thirstier immediately after treatment but not for much longer.

Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy a Good Alternative

Hyperbaric oxygen therapy offers a wide range of pet benefits, from enhancing wound healing to reducing inflammation and improving recovery after surgery. Increasing the amount of oxygen delivered to tissues, HBOT supports the body's natural healing processes.

Depending on the pet's condition, this treatment can be combined with traditional medical approaches such as acupuncture and cold laser therapy, or it can be used as a standalone therapy.

While it is generally safe, it is important to consult a veterinarian to ensure it is the right treatment for your pet's specific condition. As more veterinary clinics adopt this technology, the availability of oxygen chambers for pets is increasing, making this innovative therapy more accessible for pet owners seeking advanced care options for their furry friends. 

Whether considering a hyperbaric oxygen chamber for dogs or other pets, HBOT represents a promising treatment that can significantly improve the quality of life for many animals.

Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet's condition, please make an appointment with your vet.

Is your cat or dog showing signs of a veterinary emergency? Contact our Lithia Springs vets right away.

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Westside Animal Emergency Clinic is open weekday evenings, overnight and weekends to provide your pet with urgent care when needed. Our experienced Lithia Springs vets are passionate about restoring good health to companion animals.

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