The hydrotherapists at Crosslands will be able to recommend a suitable hydrotherapy programme for your dog, whether it be rehabilitation following surgery, or swimming to maintain muscle tone, aiding in a better quality of life. Crosslands recommends that your dog has occasional check-ups with your vet whilst undergoing a hydrotherapy programme.
Our rehabilitation programme is an intensive course of treatment designed to help your dog on the road to recovery following surgery or injury. The aim of this programme is to re-build the muscle that is lost during the rest-period following surgery/injury, helping to strengthen and protect the affected area. Weight bearing and normal range of movement will be more difficult for your dog, and this programme is designed to help them achieve their maximum potential. The sessions may take place in the pool or treadmill depending on veterinary advice and our initial assessment of the dog. N.B Crosslands will not swim/ treadmill dogs with unstable injuries.
The rehabilitation programme will often use two of our hydrotherapists to take muscle measurements, weight measurements and help stabilise the dog when swimming/walking. We will send regular feedback reports to the referring veterinary surgeon, so that they are able to track the progress of your dogs rehabilitation.
The rehabilitation programme recommends a minimum of 2-3 sessions per week, to enable your dog the fatest possible route back to normal activity. Frequency of rehabilitation sessions will vary from dog to dog, this can be discussed with the hydrotherapist.
Our maintenance programme normally follows the rehabilitation programme. Once muscle tone and range of movement has improved, your dog can be placed on a maintenance programme to help maintain the muscle tone gained during rehab. The maintenance programme is also desgined for those dogs suffering from conditions that make regular exercise more difficult, for example hip or elbow dysplasia, osteoarthritis and degenerative conditions.
This programme will normally use one hydrotherapists who will monitor muscle mass and weight throughout the programme. A feedback report will be sent to the referring veterinary surgeon on the completion of a course of 10 sessions.The maintenance programme recommends 1-2 sessions per 2 weeks, as regular hydrotherapy sessions will help to keep your dogs muscle tone and joint range of movement at its best. Frequency of sessions will vary from dog to dog, this can be discussed with the hydrotherapist. Each programme consists of 10 sessions, with an additional 11th session free of charge at the end of the programme. Individual sessions are also available, please contact us for our prices.Using the Pool or Treadmill.
Using the Pool or Treadmill
As we work on veterinary referrals the hydrotherapists are provided with an accurate diagnosis of the dogs injury/condition and we are able to discuss with the referring veterinary surgeon the best facility for the rehabilitation programme, whether it be the hydrotherapy pool or aquatic treadmill. Your vet will normally have a specific plan for your dogs exercise and rehabilitation following treament or surgery, and our hydrotherapists work in conjunction with this plan, to help your dog get the most out of its overall rehabilitation.
The choice to use the hydrotherapy pool or aquatic treadmill for rehabilitation is based on a number of factors- type of injury, breed, veterinary advice etc. When swimming in the pool, a dog works and strengthens the muscles required for movement, but in a non-impact and non weight bearing environment, whereas when using the treadmill there is a certain amount of weight bearing, although this can be varied depending on the depth of the water- the deeper the water, the more buoyancy received. The depth of water is closely monitored however, as along with bouyancy and support comes resistance, making the dog work harder to move its limbs through the water.
The advantage of the aquatic treadmill is that it allows the hydrotherapist control over the amount of work being achieved by the dog during the session, and can work areas of the lower limb that swimming may not achieve.