Canine neurological disorders occur when the connection between the brain and spinal cord are disrupted. They can be degenerative or caused by trauma.
Degenerative myelopathy is one such example of a degenerative spinal disease. It causes coordination issues making it difficult to walk. The dog will typically drag its hind paws as well.
Another spinal disease is intervertebral disc disease, which causes balance issues, disorientation, and a head tilt in which the dog will typically fall in the direction of the head tilt. Dogs can expect a recovery if the damage is partial. The surviving nerves can take over the function of the lost nerves.
Canine hydrotherapy has been shown to help with neurological disorders. It aids in muscle memory so your pup can work towards being able to walk again. Beach Dog Aqua Therapy has seen great results with spinal/neurological disorders and
Meet Cory the Corgi! Cory is a 13 year-old with degenerative myelopathy diagnosed in February 2021. Although he is not currently able to walk on his own, he still has full range of motion and great strength while swimming. Follow us to stay current on Cory's progress with Beach Dog Aqua Therapy!
Hip dysplasia is the deformity of the hips that occurs during growth. It is a genetic disease that loosens the hip joint. Hip dysplasia is affected by muscle mass, growth rate, diet, exercise, as well as hormones. Hip dysplasia typically presents itself in dogs that are around one to two years of age, although it can also happen to young puppies. It is more common in larger breeds.
You may notice weakness and/or pain in your dog's hinds legs. You may also observe a reluctance to get up or in climbing stairs. For dogs with hip dysplasia, canine hydrotherapy provides your dog with improved health, strength, and overall stability. The dog's buoyancy in the water prevents your pup from putting added weight on their hips, and they get the added muscle therapy that aids in their wellbeing. Extra weight is also an issue for dogs with hip dysplasia, and hydrotherapy provides low impact exercise that helps keep your dog at their ideal weight.
Beach Dog Aqua Therapy can provide your canine with all of your dog’s hydrotherapy needs.
Meet Titan, a 95 pound, one-year-old Olde English Bulldog suffering from hip dysplasia. His parents signed him up for aqua therapy sessions to build muscle strength and muscle memory to slow the effects of this degenerative disease. Titan loved his time in the water and we can't wait to see him for his next swim session!
Beach Dog Aqua Therapy was featured in Inside the Gates in Sandestin in August 2021! The article highlights the benefits of canine hydrotherapy and features Redd Bird, who is a Beach Dog Aqua Therapy swim client and resident of Sandestin!
A dog of any age, weight and size can benefit from warm water hydrotherapy. Water-based aerobic exercise provides mental and physical health benefits for your dog. These benefits can be both preventive (fitness and pre-operative) or reparative (chronic conditions and post-operative).
Beach Dog Aqua Therapy recommends hydrotherapy as a preventive treatment for:
Introducing your puppy to swimming at an early age provides multiple benefits. The aqua therapy provides a great, low-impact exercise that will leave your pup happy, well-rested and less prone to becoming destructive due to boredom. The water-based exercise reduces the chance of your puppy injuring developing muscles and joints, as well as increases circulation. The mental benefits for your puppy include increased confidence and comfort in the water. Hydrotherapy also provides your puppy with human socialization in a positive context.
Adult dogs also benefit from reduced stress and increased confidence when swimming with a certified hydrotherapist. Even if your dog does not show signs of an ailment or injury, aqua therapy provides a great form of exercise to keep your dog in prime fitness and health. Beach Dog Aqua Therapy utilizes a positive approach to help dogs overcome any fears of the water and boost their confidence as a swimmer. Exercise in a positive environment may also help address behavioral issues by relieving stress and anxiety. We find that our canine clients are always excited to come back for a swim session!
Warm water aqua therapy is also ideal for dogs of any age that are recovering from an injury or surgery and need a low-impact form of exercise to help them recover more quickly. Hydrotherapy helps them get back into shape more easily – and painlessly – by working muscles that may have atrophied before and/or after surgery. Providing pre-operative swim therapy can also reduce muscle atrophy and weight gain for the period of limited mobility following surgery.
If your adult dog is struggling with obesity, hydrotherapy is a great way to provide aerobic exercise to help your pooch lose excess weight. An overweight dog may have a shorter life span. The added weight adds stress on the joints and reduces the dog’s motivation and endurance levels. Beach Dog Aqua Therapy ensures that the weightless experience in the water is enjoyable, so that every dog is motivated for the next swim session.
Red Light Therapy & Essential Oils:
Beach Dog Aqua Therapy uniquely combines swim sessions with red light therapy and applications of customized blends of Young Living® essential oils and CBD oil based upon each dog’s individual needs. To learn more about the synergistic benefits of red light therapy and essential oils, contact Certified Canine Hydrotherapist Diane Kenney today for a complimentary consultation to discuss the health goals unique to your dog.
Article originally published in Dog-Harmony Life magazine in December 2020. Written by Christie Solomon of Elevate Next Business Consulting.
Do you have a senior dog who has limited mobility? Hydrotherapy for your canine companions provides a low-impact form of physical therapy for dogs that are suffering from chronic degenerative diseases or neurological issues, recovering from an injury or fighting weight gain as they slow down with age.
This water-based form of therapy is performed with the purpose of rehabilitating dogs either post-surgery or those that are suffering from debilitating diseases, such as arthritis or hip dysplasia. According to Sherri Cappabianca, the former owner of the Canine Fitness Institute and the original author of the CanauticsTM certification manual, “the natural buoyancy of the water reduces weight-bearing stress, allowing the dog greater ease of movement with less strain on his/her bones, joints and muscles.” Canine hydrotherapy has two main forms: underwater treadmills and pool-based swimming.
When performed correctly by a certified professional, hydrotherapy can dramatically improve the health and wellbeing of your pet. Hydrotherapy is not something that you should perform on your dog without a professional. There are four main categories of physical conditions that can be treated with aqua therapy: post-operative, pre-operative, chronic conditions and fitness.
Diane Kenney, Certified Canine Hydrotherapist and Owner of Beach Dog Aqua Therapy, describes multiple therapeutic benefits of hydrotherapy, such as:
In addition to the health benefits associated with hydrotherapy, your senior dog may also learn to swim on his/her own in different situations with less fear over time. Beach Dog Aqua Therapy utilizes a positive approach when working with all dogs, especially those that are already uncomfortable in the water. Ms. Kenney tailors the entry of the dog into the water according to size, weight and level of comfort. She does not use swim flotation devices, because it restricts the dog’s range of motion in the water. The canine hydrotherapist plays the role of the flotation device and keeps the dog afloat while he/she swims in a controlled, monitored way.
For senior dogs, warm water hydrotherapy is ideal. According to the former owner of the Canine Fitness Institute, Sherri Cappabianca, “the warm water temperature plus the buoyancy of the water gives these dogs an ability to move in ways they cannot on land or even in a regular swimming pool (due to temperature variations in most backyard pools).” In some cases, hydrotherapy for senior dogs also combines swimming and massage.
Beach Dog Aqua Therapy uniquely integrates its canine client’s swim sessions with red light therapy and applications of custom blends of Young Living® essential oils to provide additional relief from ailments impacting the dog. Similar to aqua therapy, red light therapy and topical essential oil treatments can relieve muscle and joint pain and stiffness, as well as improve recovery rates post-surgery.
If your veterinarian does not provide canine hydrotherapy, ask for a referral to a locally recommended, certified canine hydrotherapist. Canine hydrotherapy will improve the quality of life for your senior dog, and, hopefully, give you many more happy days together.
Redd Bird Feature:
Redd, a beloved and determined Australian Shepherd, started his hydrotherapy sessions with Beach Dog Aqua Therapy in June 2019 at the age of 8. While playing the month before, Redd suffered a spinal injury that left him without the use of his back legs – he was a paraplegic. After many veterinarian and specialist appointments, all of which confirmed Redd’s paralysis was permanent, sources recommended hydrotherapy to Redd’s parents. Originally not too sure of the water, Redd started seeing immediate improvements in mobility. After only three sessions at Beach Dog Aqua Therapy, he was actually walking on his own! Redd continues visiting Beach Dog Aqua Therapy regularly for maintaining muscle strength and memory.
Written by Lorraine Whetstone and originally published in Destin Life.