The best time to get your dog comfortable in the water is BEFORE surgery!
Many dogs come to us for fitness and rehab after a surgical procedure and are learning about swimming for the first time. They are not at their best. They’ve been restricted and frustrated for weeks even if their humans have done their absolute best to take care of them. Things aren’t working quite right, and they may be in pain. They’re a little worried about their bodies!
Learning something new can be stressful, even if it’s a good stress. Optimal results in the pool depend on giving the nervous system only what it can handle and no more. If we can eliminate the “new thing” piece from the experience of rehabilitating an injured or repaired part, we can be many steps ahead in the healing process by not activating the hormones of fear.
If your dog gets comfortable in the pool before surgery, they come to an activity they are familiar with, a place they feel safe, and the outcome is much improved.
An added and not infrequent benefit is that those who do “prehab” are in better shape for their surgery and recover faster. Non-weight bearing exercise allows a dog to use their muscles in more appropriate ways than has been possible for those with chronic or acute problems
Help your dog have a better post-surgical experience! We have rehab packages that can be used pre or post surgery. Come in and visit!
Beth Taylor, LMT, CVMRT