- Will rehabilitation help my pet?
While every injury and condition is different and each pet has unique circumstances and needs, our team will customize a rehabilitation program just for your pet. Whether your pet is recovering from an injury or surgical procedure, has chronic illness that is interfering with comfort and/or mobility, or you've noticed that your dog or cat is having more trouble with the day to day, rehab can help. The BARC Rolling Hills clinic offers veterinary rehab services that can decrease pain, improve strengthening, and boost fitness, weight loss, post-operative recovery times and neurological re-education. We welcome your questions about how veterinary physical therapy can improve your pet's quality of life!
- My dog/cat doesn’t like water, will they still be able to use the underwater treadmill?
Most animals, even if they're not a natural swimmer, do very well in the underwater treadmill. When introducing your pet to the underwater treadmill, we start slowly by allowing the animal to step into the treadmill without the water, closing the door and then gently raising the water level around them. The technician assigned to your pet will be in the treadmill with your companion until they are comfortable. From there, the technician physically guides your pet, comforting them, giving treats, speaking to and encouraging them the entire time. All patients in the underwater treadmill are given our full and undivided attention to promote comfort and safety. In most cases, after their first or second time in the underwater treadmill, your pet is relaxed and knows exactly what to do. Of course, if the UWT sessions are causing ongoing stress, your care team will find alternate therapies.
- Does acupuncture hurt?
While some acupuncture points are more sensitive than others, most of our patients do not react to the placement of acupuncture needles. In fact, Traditional Chinese Medical Theory believes that when there is a reaction to needle placement at a certain point, it is thought to be due to ‘the arrival of Qi’ or “De Qi’ and is considered a positive response. Humans describe the feeling as warm or tingling that can be a little surprising initially. What this means is we are achieving our goal of directing energy to an area that was previously deficient and restoring normal pathways.
- Is acupuncture safe?
Yes, acupuncture is very safe. We use sterile, one-time use needles for each patient that are discarded after the treatment. While there are uncertified animal acupuncturists out there, Beach Animal Rehabilitation Center follows AVMA recommendations requiring that veterinary acupuncture be performed by a certified, accredited veterinarian. The BARC Rolling Hills veterinarians are each certified veterinary acupuncturists and have many years of experience treating animals using this modality. Each of our technicians have many years of experience handling animals during acupuncture treatments and they do their best to ensure your pet remains calm, safe and comfortable during the session.
- Will I be able to do things to help them at home?
You bet! In fact, your participation will ensure your pet gets the most out of their rehabilitation experience. Our team will show you how to perform specific exercises at home with your pet that will help them advance in their recovery. We will also discuss things like diet, supplements, the layout of your home and other practical things that you can do to set up your pet for success.
- How often will my pet need to come for treatment?
The frequency of your pet's visits will depend on several factors, including your pet’s condition and, of course, your availability. During your pet's initial evaluation, your care team will discuss a realistic prognosis, your goals and what is practical for you. In general, expect your pet's treatment plan to be about 8 weeks in duration. Using all of this information, we will develop a unique treatment plan specific to your animal's needs. Around 4 weeks, your care team will re-evaluate your pet's progress and discuss any modifications recommended, if necessary. Then, at the conclusion of the initial treatment protocol, your pet will receive another evaluation. Typically for mild to moderate mobility or pain issues, therapy sessions are recommended twice a week and each session will last about one hour. Each therapy session could include a mixture of passive range of motion, cold LASER therapy, acupuncture and/or underwater treadmill therapy, therapeutic exercises and vitamin therapy.
- Can I stay with my pet?
While we welcome you to observe and support your animal during their therapy session, there are certain animals that do best without their owner around. In this instance, your care team may ask that you wait outside as it will likely improve your pet's advancement in their rehabilitation plan. Because our facility offers multiple viewing areas, you can still view your pet working through their session without their knowledge.