Hot Dog Blog -
  Loading... Please wait...

Hot Dog Blog

Back to blog home
Back to Blog Home

Physical Therapy: Helping Your Senior Dog Learn New Tricks

Posted by

As our pups get older, much like us, they begin to experience the aches and pains of old age. It’s after a game of fetch that you notice it: your dog is limping. You check her paws for spurs or puncture wounds, wanting to be sure she didn’t step on something that became embedded in her fur. When you get home, she walks to her bed, does the circle dance and goes right to sleep.

caring for older dogs After the nap she still seems to be having a hard time putting weight on her back leg. You make an appointment with your vet and check your pup again for signs of bites or sticker weeds.

The vet determines that the muscles in her hind legs have begun to atrophy. Being an older dog, your little love’s muscle mass has decreased, leaving her less flexible and more prone to injury.

To keep her fit and pain-free, the vet suggests your gray-muzzled pup start a regular exercise regimen and begin physical therapy. Physical therapy for a dog? Does it really help?

The Benefits of Canine Physical Therapy

Canine physical therapy, or veterinary rehabilitation as it’s called in the veterinary world, uses the same techniques found in human physical therapy. After getting a referral from the pup’s veterinarian, the veterinary specialist tailors a rehabilitation program to the dog’s needs. The ultimate goal of the program (like it is with humans) is to improve the quality of life of the dog. By creating programs that address surgery, injury, obesity and diseases in dogs, canine physical therapists have developed exercises that make better and extend our furry companions lives.

In 2007, the American Association of Rehabilitation was founded to “educate veterinary surgeons, veterinarians and the public about the role [a veterinary] specialist can play in [canine] health.” Some of the techniques canine physical therapists use include:

water therapy for dogs Hydrotherapy: A form of water therapy, this technique is used to alieve arthritic pain and build strength after a surgery. Hydrotherapy demands complete water immersion (your pupper is going to be swimming!) so they’ll need a waterproof dog collar that won’t restrict their movement or get ruined by all the exercising.

Cryotherapy: This technique is used to treat diseased tissue that causes pain and discomfort to the dog. By applying intense cold to the affected area, the diseased tissue will die and make your pup pain-free.

Thermotherapy: This technique is “the application of heat to the body for therapeutical purposes.” Thermotherapy is used to treat inflammation.

The purpose of canine physical therapy is to build muscle and coordination and lessen joint and arthritic pain. If your dog was active and high-energy when they were younger but have slowed down with age and suffer all sorts of aches and pains after playtime, veterinary rehab will help them get back in tip-top shape. Not only will it get your pup back to feeling good, they’ll have a fun time doing it too, just look at Merlin the Collie Mix, he definitely has a smile on his face!

To make sure your dog has the tools they need to succeed in their physical therapy work, visit Hot Dog Collars for all your doggie accessory needs. 

Want to read more posts like this?

Tags - Click each tag to see related posts

View Comments

15 Reasons Fur Babies are Better Than Human Babies

If you have been with your S.O. for a couple of years, you’re no doubt getting asked these questions: When are you getting married? Why is it taking so long? Don’t you want kids? Why don’t you want kids? Why won’t you give me grandchildren? Maybe you’ve heard a few of these choice phrases too: You won’t be young forever. They won’t buy the [...]

Continue Reading...

Help! My Dog Has Separation Anxiety

You put on your shoes, grab your keys, and make your way to the door. Before you can even turn the knob, your dog appears. He begins whining, yipping, and frantically circling your feet. Your heart sinks, and your emotions waffle between frustration and guilt. It's a common scene, played out in households across the world. Your dog, like thousands [...]

Continue Reading...

Should You Vaccinate Your Dog?

With all the different stories in recent years about vaccines, let's be perfectly clear on this:  Puppy vaccines are essential for a healthy pet. The sooner you start your puppy on a regular vaccination program, the healthier and happier your pet will be. While the rabies vaccine is required by law, the other shots will also protect your [...]

Continue Reading...

10 Things To Know About Puggles

Many people are not familiar with the term "designer dog." This sounds like an adorable pooch that fits into your matching handbag, but in fact, it is a deliberate mating of two breeds with known characteristics to get the best of both. One popular combo is the "Puggle," which combines the adorable Pug with the self-assured Beagle. Here's a [...]

Continue Reading...

5 Cool Facts About Cockapoos

The Cockapoo is often referred to as a mixed-breed or designer dog. It is a cross between a poodle and a cocker spaniel, creating a pet that offers some of the features from each breed while avoiding many of the genetic imperfections commonly found within purebreds. The cockapoo is often healthier than either a poodle or [...]

Continue Reading...

Canine Aggression Warning Signs

Do you have a good dog or a bad dog? That question and its answer are actually misleading as we should really be looking for abnormal behavior, not "good or bad.” A responsible owner recognizes this behavior in their dog and works to address the issue before it escalates into a dangerous situation. Check out the 11 dog [...]

Continue Reading...

Top 10 Tips Before Bringing Home A New Puppy

Whether you are buying your new puppy from a local breeder or adopting one from the pound, the introduction of this new family member will mean enormous changes to your life. From how you travel to how well (or poorly) you sleep, you will see the influence of your new four-legged family member in countless ways. It does not matter [...]

Continue Reading...

How to Train Your Pup for the Iron Doggy

It’s a new year and you’re tired of making excuses. You’ve decided that this is the year you’re going to do it: compete in a marathon. You’ve been busy researching marathons online that are held across the country, the groups they’re “run” by (get it?!) and what it would cost to compete. Then one day you come across the [...]

Continue Reading...

10 Strange Things All Dog Owners Secretly Do

Never is it more annoying to be asked when you’re going to have kids than in front of your fur baby. Clearly Aunt Zelda has lost it—how can she ignore your little scruff monster like that?! Grr! Okay, okay, take a couple of deep breaths. You have to admit it, to other people it’s odd that you think of [...]

Continue Reading...

Browse by Tag

Never miss a post

Enter your email and we'll send you a note when we add a new post to the blog.