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  • Hydrotherapy

Hydrotherapy is an excellent option when you want a gentle but effective treatment that rebuilds your dog’s strength and flexibility.

In the treatment of humans and animals, hydrotherapy uses the physical properties of water to aid in the strengthening and re-education of the limbs. 

The buoyancy of the water decreases the impact on weight-bearing areas of the body, which can reduce pain, allow greater range of movement and ease stiff joints all without the use of medication. The slow movement of limbs in water protects against further injury or strain. Combined, these are powerful elements of physical therapy that would not be otherwise possible for dogs that are constrained by debilitating conditions or injuries. The process can also be used as a medium for the delivery of heat or cold to the body. The warmth of the water allows the muscles to relax which improves flexibility and circulation to the tissues and aides the healing process. Hydrostatic forces of the water can also help to reduce inflammation of injured joints, therefore providing pain relief. The increased resistance caused by walking through the water in turn builds muscle strength and cardiovascular fitness. 

What does hydrotherapy help to treat?

Hydrotherapy can help in the treatment of chronic conditions, post-operative recovery, weight loss and general fitness in dogs. Conditions that respond well to, or are managed by, hydrotherapy include osteoarthritis, cruciate or other ligament injuries or strains, muscle injuries, spinal conditions, obesity, and soft tissue injuries. It can also aid greatly in post-operative recovery from stem cell therapy. 

What should I expect? 

During the initial hydrotherapy consultation, the therapist will conduct a full static assessment, feeling through all of the muscles and joints, followed by a dynamic assessment of how the animal walks, looking at stride lengths and joint flexion. The therapist will then talk through results with the owner and perform an appropriate first treatment in the underwater treadmill depending on the pet’s abilities. 

Follow up sessions will also involve full static and dynamic assessments as well as tailoring the underwater treadmill program to challenge the pet. 

Veterinary referral

Hydrotherapist’s work under veterinary referral, meaning that a vet must refer the animal for hydrotherapy. This can be achieved by completing one of our referral forms, which can be found and submitted online or sent to the veterinary practice directly. They must be completed and signed by the animal’s existing veterinary practice. 

Like physiotherapy, many insurance companies will cover hydrotherapy. Refer to your policy terms and conditions for more information.

Post-Surgical rehabilitation

  • Underwater Treadmill
    The underwater treadmill is a fantastic option for exercising your pet after surgery. The depth of the water can be changed to control the amount of weight that is being placed on the limbs while varying the speed of the treadmill to get your pet up and moving as quickly as possible for a better recovery.
  • Stance Analyzer
    Utilizing the Stance Analyzer can visibly show you how your pet is progressing through his or her clinical and rehab visits when surgery has been completed. The data collected will keep track of how your pet is shifting weight from the surgical area to other limbs and gives you insight into how well he or she is healing.

Non-Surgical rehabilitation

  • Underwater Treadmill
    For those instances when surgery is not an option, your veterinarian may determine that allowing a pet to walk in an underwater treadmill can still be extremely beneficial. Benefits include minimizing how much muscle is lost due to inactivity, control a pet’s exercise while he or she is recovering from injury and help a pet’s mental well-being by allowing those with degenerative diseases the opportunity to walk with the support of the water.
  • Stance Analyzer
    The Stance Analyzer will help evaluate injuries, degenerative changes and a prescribed treatment over a period of time. Subtle changes can be seen as a pet is standing on the device that can alert us as to a potential issue or disease process needing to be treated.

Weight Loss

  • Underwater Treadmill
    If your pet is overweight, the underwater treadmill can be a great way to help your pet comfortably shed those unwanted pounds. Your rehabilitation therapist will start your pet slowly and gradually increase his or her time and pace as the weight decreases and they get into better shape to improve their overall health.

Conditioning

  • Underwater Treadmill
    For those canine athletes that need an additional challenge, the underwater treadmill can really push your pet to his or her limits. Cardiovascular fitness, endurance, and muscle mass can all be increased when your pet exercises in water. And, for those times of the year when exercising outside is not ideal, this provides you with an option for keeping him or her in shape for the next competition.
  • Stance Analyzer
    Allowing your pet’s stance to be analysed can help you potentially see if your pet is experiencing any lameness or compensations from intense exercise. The data collected will give you information on what limb, or limbs, has an issue so you can be proactive in preventing injuries.

Diagnosis

  • Underwater Treadmill
    When pets walk in water, they tend to exaggerate how they step more than they do when they walk on land. This can allow us to observe if there is a problem with how they are walking and determine a course of action to treat the issue.
  • Stance Analyzer
    The Stance Analyzer is a great instrument for showing you which limb is affecting your pet. By narrowing down where the problem exists, you can focus your money and energy on the appropriate area for other diagnostics (if needed) and therapeutic interventions for the maximum outcome.

Greenside Vets Locations & Contact Details

St Boswells
Jedburgh
  • By appointment only, please contact 01835 823257 for further details.
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