Our pets are part of our family, and it makes sense that we want to keep them healthy and well-protected. Unfortunately, our pets can become injured or sick despite our best efforts, leading to a decline in mobility. Whether your pet is suffering from an acute injury or a long-term condition, pet rehabilitation may be able to help. With customized treatment plans and a range of rehabilitation options, it may be possible to regain mobility for your pet and allow them to live a pain-free life. Below, let’s take a closer look at some standard options for pet rehabilitation.
While it may sound frightening and somewhat intimidating, laser therapy is an easy and pain-free solution to rehab your pet. A trained veterinarian will use a specialized medical-grade laser directly on the pet’s skin during laser therapy. The low-level laser beam emits pulses that travel through your pet’s skin and fur. The laser can help trigger cell production deep in the skin, tissues, or organs. When the cells are excited, it generates new growth, prompting quicker recovery times and faster healing. Using laser therapy is an excellent option if your pet has recently undergone surgery. Laser therapy has been proven to accelerate healing in pets.
Like acupuncture intended for people, pet acupuncture targets specific locations and pressure points throughout your pet’s body. A very tiny needle is inserted into the skin, releasing built-up energy, opening the channel. Most pets will barely notice the needle and will remain calm throughout the appointment. Pet acupuncture can be used to treat acute injuries, like a muscle or ligament tear, or can be used to treat conditions like arthritis or even cancer. Usually, a pet will undergo six to eight treatment sessions before an injury is completely healed. Because pet acupuncture is safe, it is perfectly alright to continue extended treatment for the life of your animal. This treatment is a good, long-term way to manage pain associated with chronic illness.
When joints are injured or are infected with chronic conditions like arthritis, they become stiff and hard to move. The less your pet moves the joints, the more likely they are to become inflamed and painful. Working through physical therapy with your pet is a great way to rehab an injury or improve a chronic condition. Physical therapy can involve various treatments ranging from simple mobility movements to manual manipulation of the joint to focused exercise. Physical therapy allows you to work with your dog at a treatment appointment and then continue practicing the exercises and techniques at home. Physical therapy is a wonderful option for pets who have recently undergone an amputation.
Some dedicated facilities will offer water therapy treatment for pets. During water therapy, a pet will perform motions and exercises associated with physical therapy underwater. The benefit of water therapy is that it is a very low-impact therapy option. Your pet’s weight is buoyed by the water, allowing them to regain their full range of motion before attempting to walk, run, or move without the water’s assistance. Water therapy is calming and soothing, and many cats and dogs primarily benefit from water therapy as an initial first step to treatment and rehabilitation. It is common to start water therapy for dogs with extreme injuries and conditions and gradually work toward physical therapy as the pet becomes healthier and more robust.