CANINE OR FELINE PHYSIOTHERAPY

DOES MY PET NEED PHYSIOTHERAPY?

Physiotherapy can either be used for rehabilitation post injury or surgery, for maintenance of long-term conditions, or for improving general wellbeing. Signs your pet may need physiotherapy are as follows:

 

  • Change in behaviour

  • Reluctance to go far on a walk

  • Poor competition performance

  • Refusing jumps/knocking agility poles

  • Hollowed back

  • Guarding behaviours

  • Excessive panting

  • Skin flickering/flinching on petting

  • Muscle wastage

  • Dragging toes

  • Difficulty getting up

  • Leg weakness

  • Difficulty climbing stairs or furniture

If your pet is lame, you will need to make an appointment with your veterinarian; physiotherapy may only commence once the lameness has been diagnosed with permission from your vet. 

HOW WILL PHYSIOTHERAPY HELP MY PET?

WHAT WILL I NEED TO DO?

A treatment plan will be formulated after the initial assessment.  Depending on findings, you may be advised to follow a programme including exercises, hot/cold therapy, stretching, guidance on activity levels and environmental advice.  If your pet has had a tendon or ligament injury or severe build up of scar tissue, ultrasound may be required 2-3 times a week which must be carried out by a qualified physiotherapist.  There are electrotherapy only appointments available for this purpose.  Sometimes hydrotherapy may also be advised for your dog, as it can be extremely beneficial alongside an exercise programme in rehabilitation. 

Physiotherapy uses a combination of manual techniques, such as massage and stretching; electrotherapies including ultrasound, pulsed electromagnetic field therapy, TENs, NMES, and laser; husbandry advice and exercise prescription.  Together the modalities compliment each other in reducing pain whilst re-balancing muscle groups after compensatory gait patterns, to prevent the re-occurance of primary and thus secondary, compensatory pain.  

Exercise programmes will also help target particular muscle groups which will improve competition performance and management of long-term conditions such as osteoarthritis.

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