Veterinary Articles and Case Examples

Points East West News Article

Posted on in Uncategorized Comments Off on Points East West News Article

One of my clients is also a television producer, so she made the following 4 minute news article on what happens during a typical Points East West Appointment.


Warning:  Does NOT contain nudity, foul language or graphic violence, but we hope you enjoy it anyway.



Team Canada – World Agility Open 2013

Posted on in Agility 1 Comment

WAO dogs watching handlers walk course

 Canada Excels at the World Agility Open in Spain

Dr. Lane is very proud to have been part of the crew supporting the Canadian national agility team as they competed in the World Agility Open.  He travelled with them to Oviedo Spain in order to resolve any musculoskeletal issues that might prevent the dogs from performing at their best.

27 countries competed, and Team Canada took them by storm, capturing 6 out of the 13 gold medals available to be won.  Well done TEAM CANADA!

If you want to learn more about the dogs and handlers that did Canada proud, please see the posted pictures below.

Bullitt & Stephan

Bullitt Mark platform WAO Bullitt leaping WAO Bullitt pretty clearly loved his job and was always eager to start the next race.

Chill &Tiffany

Chill Tiffany dancing better WAOChill leaping 2 WAO

Chill and Tiffany worked very well together, with Chill doing most of the talking.  Most of Chill’s photos were captured mid-bark.

Dice & Jessica

Dice Jessica teeterDice landing

Dice and Jessica moved together like a pair of dancers.  It was amazing to watch how well they communicated.

Favor & Lynda

Favor Linda dancing WAO

Favor Leaping

 Favor is a 7 year old powerhouse packed into a tiny frame.  That dog could move.

Feature & Susan

Feature Susan running WAO

Feature ring WAO

Feature and Sue are both seasoned experts at international competition.  Feature was one of Canada’s gold medal winners.

Funkee Monkee & Kayl

Funkee Kayl extended leap WAOFunkee leaping WAO

Funkee Monkee and Kayl won more gold medals than any other dog/handler team at Worlds!  Both fast and powerful, Funkee made it look easy.

Fynn & Mark

Fynn Mark dancing 2 WAOFynn leaping WAO

Fynn was one of Canada’s tallest competitors and the only Malinois.  He takes his job pretty seriously.

Jazz & Ann

Jazz Ann leaping 2 WAOJazz jumping better WAO

At times, Jazz just seemed to levitate over the jumps.  For such a little dog, Jazz caught some major air.

Ketcher & Anji

Ketcher Anji A frame WAOKetcher platform WAO

Ketcher was one of only a few golden retrievers to compete at Worlds, serving as a role model to all those couch potato goldens who were watching the games at home. 

Ninja & Nicki

Ninja handler platform WAONinja leaping WAO_edited-1

Ninja and Nicki  hail from BC.  At 8 years of age, Ninja shows no signs of slowing.

Recess & Kim

Recess Kim leaping WAORecess Leaping 3 WAO

Recess and Kim have won medals together every time they’ve competed at Worlds.  After this year’s bronze winning performance though, Recess is retiring.

Rush & Rebecca

Rush Rebecca dancingRush leaping WAORush was always watching every move Rebecca made, already sizing up the next obstacle even before landing the last.

Slyce & Kayl

Slyce Kayl dancingSlyce  weaves WAO

Slyce and Kayl also earned a gold medal.  At age 11, Slyce did a good job of showing the young pups how it should be done.

Trix & Jessica

Trix Jessica leaping WAO

Trix leaping WAOTrix and Jessica were the youngest pair competing for Canada.  It was their first time at Worlds and undoubtedly not their last.

Tylt & Teri

Tylt Teri landing jump WAO

Tylt Teri running WAO

 Tylt and Teri took home another of Canada’s gold medals

Vegas & Barb

Vegas Barb weaves WAO

Vegas ring WAO

 Don’t be deceived by Vegas’ fluffy cuteness.  Beneath that long haircoat lies a well muscled athletic machine.

Wynd & Meaghan

Wynd and handler dancing WAO

Wynd gallop WAO

 This was Wynd’s first major competition since having a litter of puppies last winter.  In a pre-race interview, Wynd said that she hoped her performance would serve as inspiration for mothers everywhere.



Fecal Incontinence in Dogs

Posted on in Geriatric care, Non-surgical Therapy, Nutrition 82 Comments

Faecal Incontinence in Old Dogs


Incontinence in dogs: a common complaint I hear from the owners of old dogs is fecal incontinence – normal looking bowel movement or stool “accidents” that get left somewhere in the house by a dog who knows better, and who didn’t do it on purpose.  Often the owner finds them where the dog sleeps, or they see them come out when the dog first struggles to stand after a nap.  But is this really dog incontinence?

What Causes Incontinence in Dogs?


In most cases, this is not true incontinence.  True incontinence in dogs stems from a lack of anal sphincter control, and I think in most cases that is only a small part of the problem.

I know this picture has nothing to do with the article, but really... who wants to see a picture of a geriatric dog straining to defecate?

I know this picture has nothing to do with incontinence in dogs, but really… who wants to see a picture of a geriatric dog straining to defecate?

This problem seems to almost exclusively affect dogs with very weak or debilitated hind ends.  These dogs have difficulty standing, and most importantly, they have difficulty assuming a proper “defecation posture”. Although these dogs may have a weaker than normal sphincter, in most cases it is still strong enough to prevent incontinence as long as the colon is not overfull.

However, because these dogs lack the strength to comfortably squat and defecate, they do what I refer to as the “walk & drop” – rather than crouch, they keep stepping forward while defecating.

Presumably, because defecating is so awkward and potentially uncomfortable for these dogs, they never fully evacuate their colon; they seem to defecate just enough to relieve any immediate urge, but not much more.  As a result, they spend most of their day with a mostly full colon.

Sometimes this catches up with them when they sleep, when a mostly full colon becomes an over full colon.  Combine that with the reduced muscle tone of a deep sleep and suddenly you have the recipe for a soiled bed.  Alternatively, as they engage their abdominal muscles to stand, pressure in the abdomen increases, causing them to have an accident while first getting up from a nap.

 What can I do to help?


Sometimes increasing the amount of non-digestible fibre in the diet helps (1 ice cream scoop of canned pumpkin with each meal for a large sized dog).  There are prescription medications available that improve colon motility, but I’ve not found them particularly effective.  Giving plenty of opportunity to defecate outside before bedtime is definitely helpful.

Another random picture that has nothing to do with the article.

Another random picture that has nothing to do with incontinence in dogs.

The treatment with which I have seen the best results is to address the underlying lower back pain – increase the dog’s comfort and hind end strength so that it can hold a better defecation posture and therefore better evacuate its colon.  Using combined acupuncture and manual therapy (CAMT), as well as a comprehensive arthritis treatment protocol, yields the best results.  Manual therapy is an umbrella term for chiropractic and/or physiotherapy style adjustments and mobilizations, as well as massage techniques. This protocol has an excellent prognosis for improving quality of life, and in most cases reduced the number of “accidents” as well.

Having said that, by the time the dog is at the “walk & drop” stage, they are usually quite debilitated, and the more advanced a condition is, the harder it is to turn around.  But by being aware of earlier signs and responding when you first see them, the chance of preventing this problem in the first place is much better.

 Some of the more common earlier signs include:
  • Hesitation or reduced ability to jump up (e.g.: into the car)
  • Body shakes that don’t reach from head to tail
  • Stiffness or difficulty standing (e.g.: pulling from front legs instead of pushing from the back)
  • Fatiguing earlier on walks
  • Stumbling or scuffing hind feet
  • Altered head, back or tail posture


What about urinary incontinence?


Although that is a blog topic unto itself, lower back pain is a common cause of dogs leaking urine in their sleep. Treating that underlying pain often resolves urine leakage issues. Resolving back pain can be a effective treatment for both urinary and fecal incontinence, but is also an important goal unto itself.  Less pain is a good thing.