You may have had the opportunity to experience rehabilitation or physical therapy for yourself or a loved one. This type of therapy can be a valuable part of the treatment and management of diseases and injuries in people. Did you know, though, that canine rehabilitation is also an up and coming modality in helping our animal patients?

Keep reading to learn more about canine rehabilitation therapy and how it is helping pets at Union Lake Pet Services every day.

Canine Rehabilitation Therapy

The practice of physical rehabilitation for pets involves using techniques to increase strength and decrease undesirable symptoms such as inflammation and muscle abnormalities. During a canine rehabilitation therapy session, we work with the pet and integrate our understanding of the muscles, bones, soft tissue structures, and nerves within the body to heal and relieve problems.

Union Lake Animal Hospital’s Animal Rehabilitation Center is Michigan’s first canine rehab facility. Annette Engler, our current Hospital Administrator, headed the staff as the first certified canine rehabilitation practitioner (CCRP) in the state.

Our Animal Rehabilitation Center has expanded and added new techniques and equipment and a well-trained rehab staff. Each pet undergoing rehab therapy receives a unique plan for success utilizing a combination of techniques and exercise programs.

Who We Are Helping

When you think about rehab therapy, you might picture a person working to regain function after an accident. Canine rehabilitation therapy can help many more pets than just those with an injury, though. Any pet with an orthopedic or neurological problem can potentially benefit. We are able to help pets who are:

Recovering after a trauma or injuryHealing from a surgerySuffering from back problemsStruggling with weight lossNeeding help with arthritisPlagued with an orthopedic problem such as a limb deformity or hip dysplasiaPerformance athletes or working dogs

We are also part of the FitPAWS Certified Canine Fitness Trainer program, which allows us to teach you to properly exercise your pet for the best possible results, while decreasing the risk of injury. It’s perfect for dogs who need conditioning such as agility athletes or hunting dogs. And it’s a fun, low-stress activity to do with your dog, including the anxious dog. Or Who knew your dog could benefit from a personal trainer?

With a good plan in place, almost every pet out there can benefit in some way from a rehabilitation therapy regimen. Every program is tailored to the individual patient’s needs and very gentle. We aim to strengthen and heal without pain and force. In fact, many of our pet patients are quite eager to come to their rehab sessions.

Depending on your pet’s long term rehab plan, we may recommend several sessions a week over a period of time, or a few visits spread over a longer period. Sessions may be short or long. Your pet’s progress and goals will be clearly documented so you understand what we are working towards.

If you think that your pet might have a condition that could benefit from rehabilitation therapy, don’t hesitate to ask. We are finding more and more patients that can gain a better quality of life with help from this up and coming veterinary specialty.