Senior Pet Care

“It is accepted that older animals are in pain, but that doesn’t mean it should be acceptable”

– Danni Barber, Better Pet Veterinary Physiotherapy

Canine Arthritis Management has stated that osteoarthritis affects around 80% of dogs over 8 years old, and as pet owners it can be difficult managing your pets health in their older years. Throughout both human and veterinary treatment, physiotherapy has been proven to be beneficial in providing drug-free pain relief, improving joint health and function, and maintaining or building muscle mass. All of this helps give your dog more years, and allows them to maintain a good quality of life so that you can continue making memories together. How can physiotherapy help your senior pet?

Drug-free pain relief

Manual therapies (such as massage and joint mobilisations), and additional adjuvant electrotherapies have been proven to provide drug-free pain relief for a variety of conditions. That is not to say that physiotherapy is a replacement for medicine prescribed by your vets. In fact, quite the opposite! Physiotherapy can be used as an additional therapy to support pain relief in ageing pets, with very few contraindications.

Improving joint health

Manual joint therapy and electrotherapies can be used to improve or maintain joint health and function. This is essential in senior pets as joints and the biological process of osteoarthritis means that these tissues are more likely to deteriorate quickly. A combination of physiotherapy sessions and personalised remedial exercises to complete at home can be used to help improve your pets joint health.

Building muscle mass

As joint health deteriorates, often so does the strength of the associated muscles. As pet owners, you may also notice that your pet is not as active as they once were, which makes it difficult for them to maintain their muscle mass. During each session personalised exercises will be given for you to complete at home and the exercises will be reviewed on a regular basis to ensure your pet is getting the best out of their physiotherapy sessions as possible!

It is important to note that physiotherapy is not a stand alone intervention for treating conditions such as osteoarthritis. A multimodal management approach to senior pet care is essential and Better Pet works closely with you and your vets to ensure your pet is feeling their very best!

*Contact me* if you would like to know more about how physiotherapy can benefit your senior dog!