Canine Physiotherapy is becoming
increasingly popular amongst pet owners thanks to the level of care and
rehabilitation benefits it offers dogs.
Dog physiotherapy can be used to treat a
number of problems, from joint conditions to rehabilitation
post-surgery, nerve injuries and muscle strains.
It is also used to address obesity and
reduced fitness in dogs, and because they are prone to age-related
changes, physiotherapy is an excellent way to slow down the effects of
getting older for as long as possible.
Thanks to advancements in surgical
techniques, dog physiotherapy has been proven to enhance a dog's
treatment outcome and help them get back to being fit sooner.
Certain methods can also reduce the need for medication to avoid relying
on pain relief on a long-term basis.
Physiotherapy for Working and Sporting Dogs
Like any athlete, our sporting dogs are extremely
focused. Whatever their field, be it agility, obedience or trialing,
their drive to perform often allows them to carry on training and
competing despite being in pain.
These dogs are athletes and need to be managed as
such. Only by being in the best possible physical condition will they
achieve their maximum performances and potential.
Canine physiotherapy can help maintain fitness
and improve performance and PREVENT INJURY.
Pre and Post-Operative Rehabilitation
If a surgical intervention is planned, for
example cruciate repair, “pre-hab” can enhance recovery, reduce the risk
of complications and reduce post operative recovery time.
Post-operative physiotherapy can aid the
return to “normal”, help with pain management and find ways to stimulate
a demotivated dog.
As dogs age they tend to slow down and lose some muscle mass,
balance and coordination just like us.
They then find it harder to exercise and can put on weight.
Increased weight aggravates any joint problems such as arthritis and
also cardiac and respiratory problems making exercise harder and further
Physiotherapy, alongside appropriate veterinary management, can
help prevent or delay this downward spiral keeping your dog as active
and healthy as possible.
Unfortunately, as with humans, injuries can
occur, for example following road traffic accidents or strains during
exercise. Physiotherapy can help reduce pain, enhance healing, restore
movement and aid the return to function.
The physiotherapy assessment
determines the specific treatment required by your pet.
History – This may
involve discussion with the owner, and/or vet.
Observation – In standing assessing
conformation/posture/muscle development and symmetry.
Gait – Observing your dog move in a straight
line, walking, trotting, circling and reversing and
performing other sensitising tests if indicated.
Feeling for muscle pain, spasm, tenderness and assessing joint ranges of
Following the assessment your canine physio
will devise a treatment plan specially tailored to your dog’s problems.
Treatments include some or all of the following:
Electrotherapy treatment i.e. H-wave,
ultrasound, muscle stimulation.
Muscle strengthening exercises i.e. abdominal strengthening
I work closely with the individual patient, veterinary surgeon and you, the
owner, and provide a unique treatment plan for every patient. This
treatment program will be revised and updated as the treatment