Much like humans, when we are injured we go through a timely process of healing.
Animals too, need this kind of specialized attention after serious injury. Physical rehabilitation is something that can begin immediately post operatively. For patients suffering from a neurological condition, the first 6 weeks is crucial for performing physical rehab and exercises to aid a faster and better recovery.
The benefits of animal rehab include pain reduction, improved strength and rapid recovery speed. Our rehab clinic also helps the animals improve their balance, fitness levels and their flexibility. Providing a positive psychological stimulus and strengthening bonds as well as an overall healthy well-being.
Lucy Riley was our most recent patient at our rehab centre. She was hit by a car, and had pelvic fractures and had to undergo surgery to stabilize it. Lucy is currently recovering, and we are trying to get her back on her feet and walking again by utilizing the under water treadmill.
The underwater treadmill is a highly advanced piece of equipment that allows Lucy to walk on a treadmill belt, while submersed in warm water to a level that suits her specific needs. The buoyancy of the water took most of her weight off her painful joints. This enables Lucy (and other animals) to engage in active movement with more comfort. This is especially beneficial to the older more arthritic dogs that battle to carry their full weight while exercising. Another great benefit of walking on a treadmill belt compared to just walking on a normal surface is that the belt actively pulls the joints into greater extension. After orthopaedic surgeries our patients are often battling with a decreased range of motion in those specific joints and extension is especially decreased. The underwater treadmill is the perfect and most comfortable way to help these patients return to an optimally functioning gait.
Lucy also made use of The Balance board which challenges the patients balance and strengthens the core and stabiliser muscles. It targets all the small muscles and ligaments in all the joints bringing about more awareness in the dogs body without impacting the joints.