Water therapy programs are incredibly beneficial for pets needing conditioning exercises, recovering from surgery and/or struggling with mobility issues. Because it puts less pressure on joints and muscles than traditional forms of activity, it’s a great way to provide exercise without putting undue strain on your pet.
The underwater treadmill is a great addition to canine rehabilitation services. It’s most useful for dog patients who come to 4Paws Rehabilitation & Wellness Clinic with injuries that make them reluctant to bear weight on any or all of their limbs. The buoyancy of the water encourages them to use their legs on the treadmill and reduces stress on their joints.
Water treadmills are used in human sports medicine regularly; top athletes use them to get their muscles, strength and fitness in tip-top shape. Water treadmills are relatively new in the canine rehabilitation industry, but they use the same technology as human water treadmills and encourage the same development of muscles, strength and fitness in dogs.
The underwater treadmill is particularly useful for dogs with poor balance, cruciate ligament ruptures, neurological conditions and spinal conditions. It can also benefit dogs that do not particularly like water and are unlikely to participate in pool or spa therapy sessions.
Underwater treadmills provide numerous physical benefits, including:
- Tissue repair
- Improved muscle tone
- Healing orthopedic, skeletal and neurological conditions
- Healing muscle, ligament and other soft tissue injuries
- Reduced swelling and edema (excess fluid)
- Reduced weight on joints, which reduces stress on those joints
- Developing and improving balance
- Speeding recovery from injury or surgery
- Improving general fitness, cardiovascular stamina and muscle tone
- Weight management
- Osteoarthritis pain relief
Contact 4Paws Rehabilitation & Wellness Clinic for more information about hydrotherapy and to learn how it can help your pet.