Thermal imaging for performance dogs

Discussion in 'Dogs - General Dog Chat' started by SaraB, Jul 12, 2013.

  1. SaraB

    SaraB New Member

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    There was recently an article in Clean Run about the potential market for the use of thermal imaging in diagnosing soft tissue injuries in the canine athlete. I'm looking into purchasing a thermal imaging camera and starting a side business where I would take the images and give them to the client, who would then bring them to their sports vet/regular vet/chiropractor/acupuncturer to help them establish the best course of treatment. I would most likely set up booths at agility trials/disc comps as well as do appointments.

    What's cool about this technology is that they say it can detect injuries up to three weeks prior to the dog actually showing any clinical symptoms. So if the dog is dropping bars or showing some other sign that they are "off", a thermal image could be a quick look into if there is any physical reason for it. It's also really great for pinpointing those hard to diagnose soft tissue injuries like groin, back or toe injuries.

    Here's my question, mostly directed at those who do performance sports with their dogs, but obviously I value everyone's input. Would you pay $50 to get thermal imaging done on your dog?
     
  2. BostonBanker

    BostonBanker Active Member

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    Yes. Can you do Gusto this afternoon?
     
  3. Sekah

    Sekah The Monster.

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    That's a really cool idea, and I hope you get it off the ground.

    Personally, I would not pay to have that done at a trial, especially at that price. I'm a cheapo and don't travel to trials with excess cash on me or any intention on spending more money than what I've already paid in entry fees. I don't use the services of the massage therapists or chiros either. But, that's just me! If I were to use something like that, it'd probably be on my own time, booked at a clinic. I'm not sure why, but I value the services more outside of the trial environment.

    E: Sorry, I misread and thought you said you were only doing these at trials.
     
  4. SaraB

    SaraB New Member

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    When my boss told me about it initially, I was listing off dogs in my head that I knew would benefit from it. Gusto was on that list, not that you are local or anything, but I just know of so many dogs that have these hard to diagnose injuries.
     
  5. MandyPug

    MandyPug Sport Model Pug

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    $50 would be very reasonable here. A chiro at a trial is usually $40-60

    I'd use anything that helps give me insight into possible problems with my dog. Hopefully before it becomes too much of an issue. $50-60 here and there is much better than $300+ to see the sport vet when something is really bad.
     
  6. SaraB

    SaraB New Member

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    I'm kind of on the same page. I don't think I would schedule an appt for a chiro or massage at a trial but I have scheduled them outside of trials, with the same people.

    I don't go to trials with spare cash either. But the good thing about doing this at a trial is that in some cases dogs will be "off" or dropping bars at the end of a two or three day trial. A thermal image at that point would be a lot more indicative of the problem than a thermal image done after a period of rest. Which is why making an appointment in that specific case wouldn't be as beneficial.


    Ya, our chiro's are usually in that same price range. I'm thinking $50 wouldn't be bad. I don't think I could ask much more than that though.
     
  7. Taqroy

    Taqroy Active Member

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    I don't do performance sports (yet) but I would absolutely do this, now, with Mu and Murphy. Who are apparently capable of soft tissue tears in the backyard. >.<
     
  8. Lizmo

    Lizmo Water Junkie

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    Yes, want to come do Blaze this afternoon?

    Goodness, xrays are more than $50 here. . .
     
  9. SaraB

    SaraB New Member

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    Same. Rads at my clinic are $250, but that includes interpretation from a radiograph specialist who we send all of our digital rads to.
     
  10. Julee

    Julee UNSTOPPABLE

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    I would pay $50, yes. I think this is a really awesome idea, I hope it works out for you!
     
  11. CaliTerp07

    CaliTerp07 New Member

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    If I get the image and take it to the vet, will my vet automatically know how to interpret it? Or is there a chance he'll look at me like I have two heads and no know what the heck I'm giving him?

    If you're taking these pictures, is it the dog's whole body? Specific sections?

    I think you'd have to be careful how you marketed it, but I'd definitely be interested in getting Lucy checked over to see if there's any hidden issues! (and $50 would be a steal here. It's $50 for a 25 minute massage!)
     
  12. ruffiangirl

    ruffiangirl New Member

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    It cost me 700 for 4 X-rays on Gage, and that was 5 years ago! I would totally do this if I felt my dog had possibly injured itself, that way I could determine weather I should pull him from the rest of the weekend or keep going!
     
  13. SaraB

    SaraB New Member

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    What ends up happening is the person who takes the image makes note of any areas of concern and then the vet is the one that actually diagnosis the problem.

    So no, the vet wouldn't have to find the problem areas but would have the images with the problem areas marked so they could then locate them on the dog. If that makes sense.

    I haven't had a chance to sit down and talk to my vets about it and see what they think. I'm planning on doing that later today.

    There are a couple of companies in the UK that do this currently. They price the images according to the number of images taken. So you can pay x price for a set of full body images or a cheaper price for just front legs or just rear legs, etc. Those prices include a report with explanation and the images.
     
  14. Saeleofu

    Saeleofu Active Member

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    $50 sounds reasonable to me. And not just for trials, Gavroche seems to have a recurrent neck issue that is always "resolved" when he's at the vet.

    My only concern is that some vets (like mine >.<) are not fans of any new/alternate technology, and will make fun of people for it rather than try to learn. So I'd have to take my dog to a different vet if I had it done.
     
  15. AdrianneIsabel

    AdrianneIsabel Glutton for Crazy

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    I wish this had been an option when Bs jumping went from 24 ft to 18 ft in dock dogs. He was later found to have an issue with the sacroiliac. His jumping in dock depleted almost a year before I noticed he was just barely favoring his right side and only when standing, never when moving. I paid a chiro 70 to confirm. He had striding issues as well which isn't shocking with such an issue, it can be caused by or cause striding trouble, and that can mask the misalignment.
     
  16. Romy

    Romy Taxiderpy

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    Considering confo people blow $30 a pop for those official posed win pictures, I think you'll do great. Good luck!
     
  17. MandyPug

    MandyPug Sport Model Pug

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    $30? Try $60 here for one photo on a disc... Nevermind prints.
     
  18. stardogs

    stardogs Behavior Nerd

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    I really like this idea - I'm occasionally think I see a limp or something off, but it's not enough to go to the vet for because 1. often I can't reproduce it and 2. my dogs are so stoic they won't react to pain generally, thus making it hard to pinpoint injury. My chiro has helped us numerous times but can be hard to get in to see and is $40+ and hour's drive away. Thermal imaging at a trial would fill a nice gap.
     
  19. DJEtzel

    DJEtzel New Member

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    I don't know anything about this other than what you've just said, but it sounds like it would be more accurate/easier to see/read than an xray?

    If that's the case, I would absolutely pay $50 for that. Maybe a few if there was a discount for each additional. ;)

    Good luck if you decide to do this. Just curious, but how much would the camera/equipment cost?
     
  20. SaraB

    SaraB New Member

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    For soft tissue injuries it is easier. For orthopedic injuries, it won't really help and rads would need to be done. It'll pinpoint the area of the orthopedic injury but not show the actual injury itself.

    The camera is about $8k and the training is around $1500.
     

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