The ultimate aim for the veterinary physiotherapist, following an injury or surgery, is to aid in the treatment and rehabilitation of your animal, enabling it to return to the same level of function it had. Whilst this is not always possible, we will always look to return to as much function as possible. To achieve this your appointments will include a multimodal approach to the treatment, incorporating massage and manual therapies, electrotherapy and rehabilitative exercises. In addition to the primary injury or concern, we will also treat any compensatory issues that develop.
MAINTENANCE TREATMENTS AND ASSESSMENTS:
Primarily aimed at sporting dogs, we strongly believe that we often ask a lot from our canine companions when training and competing at dog sports for us and as such view them as athletes. We therefore encourage regular checkups and maintenance treatments to promote wellbeing and to ensure your dog remains in peak condition. These are not only important for the health and wellbeing of your dog, but are able to help keep them injury free and performing to the best of their ability.
Depending on the work load, we typically advise sporting dogs are checked at least every 2-3months, but ideally more frequently during times with heavy workload/competitions. Our own dogs are checked and treated monthly during the competitive season. These sessions will include a full musculoskeletal assessment, involving observing your dogs movements, assessing their joint health and looking at the tone and balance of the muscles in the dog. Following the assessment, we will provide minor treatments to ensure optimum health of the musculoskeletal system.
These sessions are only suitable for healthy dogs free from injury and underlying conditions.
MANUAL THERAPIES AND THERAPEUTIC EXERCISE:
If following the musculoskeletal assessment it is decided that your dog will benefit from treatment it is most likely that we will perform some manual therapy. As a minimum these typically will include some massage and passive range of movement exercises. We use a variety massage techniques depending on the needs of the muscles involved, but may include;
• Trigger point therapy
• Myofascial release
In addition, where retraining and/or strengthening is required we are likely to prescribe therapeutic exercises to help rehabilitate your dog along with passive and active range of motion exercise.
Where appropriate we will use various electrotherapies to assist in the healing and repair of damaged tissues. Depending on the type of tissue affected and the effect required we may use the following;
Pulsed Electromagnetic Field Therapy (PEMF/PMFT)
Often referred to as ‘pulse mag’, this treatment affects changes at a cellular level through the use of electromagnetic energy to stimulate and promote healing. This can be beneficial for the following:
• Pain relief
• Reducing inflammation
• Fracture repair
• Muscle relaxation
At Superfly we use laser plus red and Infrared LED to assist in the healing process. Light energy is absorbed by the cells which induces chemical changes at a cellular level.
Laser has been proven to effect;
- Inhibition of inflammation
- Analgesia and pain inhibition
- Tissue regeneration
- Improved circulation
- Quality of life
Photobiomodulation can also be used for:
• Wound repair
• trigger point therapy
Through the use of mechanical energy, delivered through high frequency soundwaves, ultrasound can be affective with:
• Ligament and tendon injuries
• Fascia restriction
• Breakdown of scar tissue
• Non-union fracture repair
Neuromuscular Electrical Stimulation(NMES) and Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation(TENS)
Through the use of tiny electric stimulations, nerves can be stimulated to induce muscle contractions to increase strength (NMES) or to block pain (TENS).
At times it may be recommended that treatments are carried out at home due to the frequency that treatment is required. Where this is the case we are able to hire some of our units out.