Canine Hydrotherapy (Swimming)
Swimming therapy is among the top recommended therapies for recovery from surgery, injury and rehabilitation. It is an important exercise used in pre surgery to build muscle tone before any operation takes place. When done, recovery is enhanced if muscle tone and fitness are in top condition prior to surgery.
This is becoming a popular prescribed protocol for canine rehabilitation and strength building. Dog pool provides a platform for non weight bearing exercise where the resistance in water is up to twenty times that of being in air.
Research shows that muscle atrophy begins within two to three days following injury/surgery. It also shows that delayed rehabilitation causes increased swelling due to lack of movement, loss of muscle control and joint stability also; there is increased stiffness of muscles and tendons.
Important full weight-bearing activities is often delayed or limited for weeks after surgery. This normally extends the recovery time. Swimming therapy allows rehabilitation to begin almost immediately after surgery/injury. This avoids stress caused by weight bearing and concussion while allowing muscles, tendons, ligaments and joints to work.
The weightless exercise of swimming performed in the buoyancy of water allows limbs to move freely with full range of movements. This helps to avoid joint stiffness problems while allowing the dog to build physical muscular strength and cardiovascular stamina. The use of warm water provides therapeutic massage and enhances blood circulation and flow. This is essential in delivering nutrients to injured areas.
This therapy is important in areas like post operative conditioning, arthritis, hip dysplasia and spinal injuries. On the other hand, it helps to relieve painful ligaments, relaxation of muscles spasms and cardiovascular problems among others.
Swimming is an excellent part of fitness and weight reduction program for overweight dogs and good performance in dogs and rejuvenation.