Canine & Feline Rehabilitation
Why Rehab? Veterinary medicine has made phenomenal advancements in the past 10 years with one of the most recent being rehabilitation therapy for companion animals. Whether your pet is recovering from injury or surgery, is slowing down from age or disease, or is suffering from excessive weight, veterinary rehabilitation can accelerate their road to recovery and well-being.
Following surgery or serious injury, loss of muscle mass can begin in as soon as 24 hours. Injuries can also lead to pain, swelling, loss of motor control, and joint stiffening. With the use of rehabilitation therapy, we can help combat these problems. To jump to the programs and services we offer, click here…
How can rehabilitation help?
- Improved joint and muscle function
- Increased muscle mass and strength
- Decreased pain, swelling, and complications
- Improved coordination, flexibility, endurance, and performance
- Increased speed of healing and recovery
- Positive psychological benefits
Our goal is to improve the quality of life of our canine and feline companions by ensuring speedy recovery from injury, enabling successful surgical outcomes, and helping patients remain active, mobile, and pain free.
Pets suffering from orthopedic conditions have pain, loss of muscle mass, and impaired mobility. Our orthopedic rehabilitation program aims at treating muscles, bones, tendons, and ligaments. During sessions, we choose therapeutic exercises safe for a patient’s level of recovery and combine them with treatments such as laser therapy to increase their strength and comfort.
Common orthopedic conditions we treat:
Common orthopedic conditions treated and managed at IndyVet rehabilitation include hip dysplasia, cranial cruciate ligament tears (CCL injury), patella luxation, osteochondritis dissecans (OCD), legg-calve-perthes disease, biciptal tenosynovitis, elbow dysplasia, fragmented medial coronoid process (FCP), ununited anconeal process (UAP), elbow incongruity, carpal hyperextension, angular limb deformities, medial shoulder instability, joint luxations, muscle contractures, muscle strains, fractures, and ligament or tendon injuries.
Injuries or disorders of the nervous system often result in weakness, loss of muscle mass, loss of balance, gait abnormalities, and pain. Through rehabilitation, we focus on strengthening, gait retraining, and increasing comfort levels so that our patients can regain function. We also provide aid with assistive devices such as carts and harnesses to help increase the patient’s mobility when needed.
Common neurologic conditions we treat:
Common neurologic conditions treated at IndyVet rehabilitation include intervertebral disc disease (IVDD), cervical disc disease, thoracolumbar disc disease, degenerative myelopathy, degenerative lumbosacral stenosis, wobbler syndrome (cervical spondylomyelopathy), fibrocartilaginous embolic myelopathy (FCE), neoplasia, traumatic injuries, discospondylitis, and atlantoaxial luxation.
As pets age, they become prone to slowing down due to decreased mobility, weight gain, and joint discomfort from arthritic changes. The combination of these conditions often affect your pet’s well-being and decreases their independence. Our geriatric and osteoarthritis rehabilitation program focuses on increasing the patient’s mobility, strength, and comfort so that they maintain an active, high quality lifestyle.
Obesity is a common problem in pet populations. Pets that do not maintain an ideal body condition often suffer from joint pain, decreased mobility, carry an increased risk of injury, and have a decreased life span. Our weight loss program focuses on sessions in our underwater treadmill, land exercises, and nutritional recommendations. We also provide clients with an at-home program to ensure success during their pet’s weight loss journey.
Pets participating in agility, field trials, flyball, or other sporting events require special fitness training to keep them at optimal performance levels. Our athletic conditioning program targets increasing and maintaining the athletic pet’s fitness level. Through a combination of sessions in our underwater treadmill combined with land exercises, we can improve muscular and cardiorespiratory strength and endurance. IndyVet Rehabilitation can also provide non-pharmaceutical treatments to relieve muscle and joint discomfort that are commonly seen in athletic patients.
If you live in an area that requires a long commute to IndyVet or have a schedule that doesn’t allow for regular in-clinic sessions, our home exercise program is a great option. After an initial consult, we provide a tailored treatment plan with access to videos and directions for home exercises. While home exercises will not achieve an equivalent level of success as an in-clinic program, we will work closely with you to update the treatment plan to ensure your pet achieves as much success as possible.
IndyVet’s canine home exercise and educational program focuses on helping owners work with their pets from home. With images AND video of all exercises, these custom programs are unique to each patient and can be viewed via computer, devices such as iPads (or any tablet), and smartphones. To access our exercises page, click here…
Treatments & Services
Therapeutic laser is a form of light therapy that enhances cellular functions to promote healing. This form of therapy reduces inflammation, assists with pain, and accelerates tissue, wound, and nerve repair.
Therapeutic ultrasound uses sound waves to create deep tissue heating. This allows for increased stretching of tissues resulting in improved movement of joints and muscles. Therapeutic ultrasound also decreases pain and muscle spasms, and promotes wound and fracture healing.
Neuromuscular electrical stimulation (NMES) uses a current to stimulate muscle contraction and is useful in pets that have lost function of their limbs or where active exercise is contraindicated. This modality can be utilized to increase muscular strength and endurance, provide muscle re-education following injury, decrease muscle loss from disuse of a limb, and improve joint mobility.
Electrical stimulation (ESTIM) is also used for pain control, to reduce swelling, and to accelerate wound healing.
The use of an underwater treadmill allows pets with pain, muscle weakness, or balance issues to exercise more comfortably due to the buoyancy of the water. The support of the water is helpful for patients recovering from a recent surgery or injury and for neurologic patients that need gait retraining.
During underwater treadmill therapy, the resistance of the water increases muscular strength, enhances joint range of motion, and increases cardiorespiratory endurance. The warm water also provides therapeutic heating effects to injured tissues and joints.
Targeted Pulsed Electromagnetic Field Therapy (tPEMF) is one of the newest technologies to come to veterinary medicine. tPEMF uses targeted electromagnetic pulses to enhance cellular pathways involved in decreasing inflammation and accelerate the rate of tissue healing. This therapy is a safe and effective approach to pain management and is a great alternative or complement to pharmaceutical therapies aimed at the reduction of inflammation and pain. A benefit of tPEMF is that it can be easily used at home.
Therapeutic exercise is a combination of strengthening, balance, and awareness exercises, combined with range of motion and stretching. It is used to improve a patient’s muscular strength, core strength, endurance, flexibility, mobility, speed, limb placement, and balance. It achieves these outcomes by increasing muscle mass, providing more comfortable movement, and improving performance.
normal stance in dogs and cats will show the front limbs bearing 60% of the pet’s weight and the rear limbs bearing the remaining 40%. These numbers should be evenly distributed between the left and right limbs. In a pet experiencing lameness, pain, or structural abnormality, these numbers are altered. Using a computerized system, we evaluate these parameters to locate the origin of the lameness and objectively determine the degree of impairment. This is useful in creating tailored treatment plans and in objectively tracking your pet’s progress.
IndyVet rehabilitation works closely with pet owners to help them make the best decision possible regarding assistive devices such as harnesses, orthotics, and carts. We have worked with numerous vendors such as OrthoPets, Help ‘Em Up, Walkin’ Wheels, Eddie’s Wheels, K9 Carts, Doggon’ Wheels, and many more to ensure we can accommodate a variety of needs. Adjusting a wheelchair or other assistive device can be complicated but we are committed to making sure your pet has the proper fit, is comfortable, and achieves the best utilization of the device.
Does your dog slip or slide on hard surfaces? Dogs use their nails for traction when walking but on hard floors, the nail cannot grip the surface well. ToeGrips are a nonslip surface that are applied directly to your dog’s toenails to keep them on their feet. ToeGrips help to restore the confidence in senior and arthritic pets due to their new found mobility. They also reduce the risk of injuries due to falls and can be a good option for pets recovering from surgery. ToeGrips are worn continuously for 4-6wks and are designed for both indoor and outdoor use.
The Assisi Loop is a portable, FDA approved, Non-Pharmaceutical Anti-Inflammatory Device (NPAID). This device is a safe pain management technology that can be used alone or in conjunction with the pet’s current treatment plan. This loop offers pet owners the ability to provide pain relief and healing for their pet at home. The Assisi Loop uses a targeted pulsed electromagnetic field (tPEMF) to cause a release of Nitric Oxide which is a key component associated with healing. This technology has been shown to reduce pain, decrease inflammation, and accelerate the healing of damaged tissues, and can penetrate through bandages, casts, and fur. Each treatment lasts 15 minutes and the loop automatically shuts off when the treatment time is completed. Each device offers a minimum of 150 treatments and is easy to use at home. The Assisi Loop is a great option when NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) cannot be used (such as patients with kidney or liver disease) and there are no contraindications for the treatment of patients with cancer.
The Assisi Loop is great for:
- Pain management
- Wound care
- Post-surgical healing
- Degenerative (neurologic) disorders
- Orthopedic injuries