Animal Pain Awareness Month

September is Animal Pain Awareness Month: Is your pet in pain? Do you think you would know if your pet was in pain? Although acute pain can be obvious, with signs like whining, crying, or lameness, chronic pain can be more subtle. Animals are good at hiding their pain, but…

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How Does Exercise Help Treat My Dog’s Pain?

I often get asked, “How much exercise does my dog need? And how much is too much?”  The answer to these questions is: it depends. Dogs that are recovering from injury or surgery need to restrict their activity in order to recover. Older dogs with arthritis need to be careful…

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Pain Assessment in Dogs and Cats

Pain We all recognize pain when we feel it, but pain can be difficult to define because it is complex and subjective.  Sometimes pain is sharp, and at other times it is a dull ache.  For this reason, and because animals are experts at hiding their pain, pain can be…

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FUNctional Fitness: Figure Eight

Benefits of figure eights include weight shifting, proprioception, core strength, balance, and coordination.  I prescribe this exercise often because it is useful for the injured dog that is in the process of recovery, as well as the healthy dog to strengthen the core and prevent injury.  Also, figure eights are…

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Exercise Guidelines for Puppies

Puppies tend to fill their days with activity and play in between times of rest and sleep.  Because of this, many owners think that you can’t exercise them too much and that it is OK to exercise a puppy to the point that he tires out and no longer wants…

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Functional Exercise for Dogs: An Intro

This is the first in a series of posts about functional exercise. I am inspired by The Martial Arfs blog series about conditioning principles. When I evaluate an exercise, I tend to think about it from a functional standpoint and answer these three questions: what is the muscle’s action? what…

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Treatment Options for Dogs with Osteoarthritis

Osteoarthritis (OA) is one of the most common conditions affecting dogs.  An estimated 20% of dogs over one year of age are arthritic, and that number rises as your dog ages.  The most common causes are either joint instability or wear-and-tear on the joints as they age.  There are several…

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Bracing for Carpal Injury in Dogs

The carpus, the joint on the front limb that is the equivalent to the wrist, is a complex joint that is susceptible to ligament injury, or sprain.  These injuries often cause instability in the joint.  Management of injury often includes rest and sometimes bandaging.  If the dog does not respond…

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Senior Dog Wellness

September is Senior Dog Wellness month! Older dogs tend to be affected by chronic conditions, such as arthritis, decreased mobility, and sometimes memory loss.  There are a lot of things you can do to help improve the quality of life of your older dog.   We all need to keep…

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