Rehabilitation Basics

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Why is Rehabilitation Important?

When dogs have surgeries such as cranial cruciate ligament (CCL) stabilization or fracture repairs.... they typically have pain and swelling which require exercise restriction. Rehab therapy accelerates the reduction of pain and swelling immediately post-op through various methods, such as: massage, physical exercises, ultrasound and laser treatments. Rehab also allows us to return function and range of motion quickly. Another method of treatment uses our underwater treadmill. This allows dogs to safely return to activity quickly, as it facilitates proper walking motions (through the resistance of the water) without forcing them to bear the majority of their weight (through buoyancy of the water). Other methods include dry land exercises such as walking through a system of low rails, promoting proper flexion of the joints. We also perform weight shifting exercises which teach the peripheral nerves how to work properly again.

Many dogs have osteoarthritis (OA).... usually a result of a previous injury or joint instability (such as dysplasia or a ruptured CCL). These dogs not only have pain in their joints, they also have reduced strength of muscles, tendons, and ligaments, as well as diminished range of motion. All of this contributes to a lack of mobility. Besides traditional pain medications, rehab offers a variety of ways to reduce pain in their joints. A properly selected combination of rehabilitation therapy leads to great improvements for dogs with osteoarthritis.

There are a variety of neurologic conditions which are very responsive to rehab therapy... although each neurologic condition requires unique treatments, neurologic patients generally have weakness and lack of ability to use limbs can be painful, and many get worse. Our goals are to increase strength and ability to use their limbs, regain stability, and facilitate regeneration of nerves. 

Does your dog limp on any of its legs?

Was your dog recently diagnosed with ___?

If you said YES to one or more of theses questions, please call us at (630) 904-2020 and we'd be happy to assist you on next steps. 

Pet Rehab Inquiry Form

Questions about our rehab program? Follow the instructions below to fill out our rehab inquiry form. A technician will follow up with you within 48 hours. Thank you for your inquiry!

Inquiry Submission Instructions:

**Please use a computer (no mobile devices) to save and fill out our forms. Thank you!

1. First, save the PDF file to the left by clicking the download button in the upper right corner. 

2. Fill out the form by typing in the corresponding boxes.

3. Once complete, click the Submit button located at the bottom of the form.

4. Finally, the completed form should attach to an email ready to be sent to us. If not, email the form to wah@wheatlandanimalhospital.com

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