What Does A Cold Laser Treatment Feel Like For Dogs?

By Dr. Candy Akers

A cold laser treatment, from a high quality laser, feels like some of your hairs are standing on end. A laser treatment does not get hot and does not hurt. In dogs, I often see three changes in body language during the part of treatment that occurs directly over the inflamed or injured tissue. Sometimes dogs will hold their breath during the treatment on the injured tissue. I also commonly see changes in behavior or body movements that appear like your dog is looking at you or turns their head like they are aware of a tingling. The third sign that pets show is a light twitch or a shiver of their hair around the treatment area. Cold laser makes a great healing modality for dogs that is non-invasive and painless.

One step further, cold laser treatments on pets reduce pain. Using one technique, we can decrease or even eliminate the tingling sensation that our pets may experience at the start of the low-level laser treatment.

To reduce the tickle, based on all my experience, I recommend starting the treatment above the injured area. A few passes around nerve bundles or the spine will desensitize the vulnerable area. 

Desensitizing with the energy from the cold laser stimulates the nerves upstream to release endorphins. Endorphins are the body’s natural pain relievers. Sometimes they are called “feel-good” chemicals.


Three Body Language Changes in Dogs During Cold Laser Therapy

  1. Changes in Breathing Pattern: Holding Their Breath
  2. Dog Looks at You or Laser Application Location
  3. Small Involuntary Twitches or Shivers