Rehabilitation After Surgery for Pets


Rehabilitation therapy in veterinary medicine is similar to physical therapy in people, but has some significant differences due the variations in the animal’s anatomy and the extreme forces that can be placed on their joints, bones, tendons and muscles.  As a result, rehabilitation programs should be developed with veterinary rehabilitation professionals who work closely with your pet’s veterinarian.

Doods practices her balance after TPLO surgery on her left knee.

Doods practices her balance after TPLO surgery on her left knee.

When injured and following surgery, rest and controlled activity is very important for our pets.  However, the longer the body is inactive, the more muscle atrophy will occur.  Realistically, getting back to structured activity is extremely important for the healing process, which is why rehabilitation therapy recommended after surgical procedures.

After a surgery, rehabilitation therapy can be beneficial for animal companions by:

  • Reducing inflammation and pain after surgery
  • Promoting early weight bearing
  • Strengthening supporting tissues
  • Decreasing compensatory muscle, myofascial, and back pain
  • Providing mental stimulation for pets who have had restricted activity
  • Improving coordination and balance
  • Reversing muscle atrophy
  • Promoting weight loss if needed
  • Developing structured homework program
  • Safely promoting faster return to function


The Not-So-Shocking Truth about Shockwave

By Colleen Lum LVT

What is shockwave?

Does it involve attaching clamps to my dog and sending electrical jolts through his body? NO! In fact, Shockwave Therapy (also known as Acoustic Compression Therapy or Extracoporeal Shockwave Therapy) actually involves the use of sound waves or acoustic waves. These sound waves meet at a focal point in the target tissue (muscle, joint, tendon, etc.) and produce an intense, extremely short duration pressure pulse that delivers therapeutic massage in areas difficult to reach by other methods. This therapeutic massage can help with managing chronic and acute pain as well as assist with healing.

What kind of conditions can ACT help with?Mia ACT

  • Osteoarthritis
  • Hip and elbow dysplasia
  • Muscle repair (iliopsoas strain)
  • Delayed healing of fractures
  • Wound healing
  • Tendonitis (biceps, supraspinatus)
  • Sesamoiditis
  • Chronic back pain