"Hot" dogs help a woman's healing
Story Published: Aug 21, 2009 at 12:00 AM PDT
Story Updated: Aug 21, 2009 at 12:00 AM PDT
By Nataii Marmion KATU News and KATU.com Staff
Although she may suffer chronic pain, Nancy Gordon has found a non-traditional way to ease the pain through what she calls her “hot” dogs.
A car accident 17 years ago dramatically changed her life.
“I was do debilitated I could hardly get out of bed,” she said. “I had very severe whiplash at first.”
Then her pain turned into chronic fatigue and fibromyalgia, which is a condition where overactive nerves cause pain.
Gordon went to great lengths to try to ease her pain, even moving to another state where she hoped a warmer climate would help.
But what improved Nancy’s life were her two “hot” dogs, Toaster and Pink.
Her dog Toaster provides traction on her neck muscles and her shoulders and heat.
“At first she (Toaster) felt like a good neck rest but within a couple minutes the warmth of her skin started helping my neck,” said Gordon. “So this happens to be a live, 24/7 no microwave hot dog.”
Toaster and Pink belong to a rare breed of dog called Xolos or Mexican hairless dogs.
Toaster is coated but has a naked belly and Pink is hairless all over, but both are trained as service dogs.
Pink may have only three legs, but that does not stop her from fetching Nancy what she needs, such as a blanket or a magazine.
“She’s three-legged and has developed that extra sense of how to adapt to their own limitations,” said Gordon. “That’s one of the reasons she’s so inspirational to me.”
Dr. Ginverva Liptan from Legacy’s Good Samaritan Pain Management Center said she does not think having the hot dogs solves the problem of chronic pain.
“But I think it can be a nice addition to those tools you’re using to manage chronic pain,” she said. “If the dogs are providing emotional health and comfort, which it looks like they are, that can have a huge benefit in chronic pain.”
Because Xolos cost between $1,500 and $2,500, Gordon is trying to raise money to help other chronic pain sufferers get their own hot dog through her line of inspirational greeting cards and gifts featuring Toaster and Pink.
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