See Spot Run Canine Rehabilitation

Rehab Services

What is Physical Rehabilitation?

Physical rehabilitation is the use of manual therapy and therapeutic exercises to relieve pain and improve function in pets suffering from degenerative conditions or recovering from surgery or injury. Physical rehabilitation can also be used to strengthen muscles and prevent injury in sporting, performance, and working dogs.

What types of cases benefit from Physical Rehabilitation?

  • Post-surgical recovery
    1. Cruciate ligament ruptures
    2. Patellar luxations
    3. Hip replacements or salvage procedures
    4. Fracture repairs
    5. Post operative neck and back surgeries
  • Degenerative/Congenital disorders
    1. Osteoarthritis
    2. Degenerative myelopathy
    3. Spondylosis
    4. Hip or elbow dysplasia
    5. Degenerative disc disease
  • Musculoskeletal injuries
    1. Ligament sprains
    2. Tendonitis
    3. Muscle strains
  • Obesity/Weight Management
  • Performance/Training the Canine Athlete

What Does Physical Rehabilitation Involve and how can my pet start?

An initial rehabilitation evaluation is essential to begin physical rehabilitation for your pet. The evaluation is scheduled with Dr. Veronica Busick who is a Certified Canine Rehabilitation Therapist. During the evaluation Dr. Busick assesses gait and posture, performs a complete orthopedic and/or neurologic exam, and measures range of motion and muscle mass. After the evaluation, a custom rehabilitation program consisting of home exercise and in-clinic rehab sessions is developed to meet your pet's specific needs. Typically, a follow-up rehab re-evaluation is recommended after 4 weeks of treatment.

When assessing gait and posture, we will have your pet walk, sit, and stand if able. This will allow Dr. Busick to identify areas of lameness or loss of function. It is also helpful to observe how your pet may be abnormally using other parts of their body in order to compensate for a lameness or loss of function.

During the orthopedic examination, Dr. Busick palpates joints and soft tissue to indentify areas of swelling, tightness, laxity, spasm or pain. The neurologic examination evaluates reflexes and tests for the presence of sensation.

Susie demonstrating goniometry measurements

The normal of motion of joints can become restricted due to disuse, injury or surgery. Goniometry is used to subjectively evaluate range of motion of joints which may be directly or indirectly involved. It is important to establish how much range of motion is present before initiating rehab so progress can be monitored.

Muscle mass circumference of large muscle groups of the forelimb or hind limb is useful to identify areas of weakness and to track progress throughout treatment.

What can I expect when I bring my pet for in-clinic rehabilitation sessions?

In-clinic rehabilitation sessions (used in combination with home exercise programs) may include underwater treadmill exercise (link to UWT info, video), modalities including low level laser therapy, neuromuscular electrical stimulation (e-stim), or therapeutic ultrasound, and other therapeutic exercises such as balance board, therapy ball, cavaletti poles or weave cones (links to videos of ther ex). Although, we usually see pets on an out-patient basis, in-patient rehabilitation with hospitalization or boarding is also available. For most out-patient cases, rehab sessions 2-3 times/week are recommended. Session duration is typically 30-60min depending on what treatments are being performed.

What if my pet is already healthy or recovered?

Fitness is important for all of our pets even if they are generally healthy! We offer Fitclub Sessions for pets that are functionally normal or are finished with their rehabilitation program and want to keep coming. Fitclub Sessions are 30min sessions used to maintain function, continue strengthening, lose weight, condition for sporting activities (agility, flyball, hunting, herding, etc.), or to just generally have fun!

Fee schedule:

Prices subject to change, please call 319-351-4256 for most current pricing information

Rehabilitation evaluation:
Rehabilitation re-evaluation:
30 minute rehab session:
60 minute rehab session:
(laser, e-stim, therapeutic ultrasound)
Fitclub session:

* 10% discount available for pre-paid 4 week programs.

** 10$ discount available for packages of 10 or more sessions.

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