Do cats love Rehab and water? You bet!

O’Malley getting Rehab in our Underwater Treadmill

O’Malley loved getting rehab in our Underwater Treadmill. Watch the video and see for yourself! O’Malley3UWTMvid

Historically, rehabilitation therapy in veterinary medicine (similar to physical therapy for humans) has been limited to dogs. But there are many examples of cats receiving rehabilitation therapy. Check out our web page to learn more: ( https://www.fosteranimalhospital.com/paws-in-motion/ )

While some cats may not tolerate water like he did, many will tolerate other forms of rehab: manual therapy, massage, LASER treatment, acupuncture, etc. If you think your cat could benefit from this therapy, call us today at 704-786-0104.

 

All the best,

Stephen E. Foster, DVM, CCRT

Foster Animal Hospital, P.A.

Paws In Motion Canine Rehabilitation Center

730 Concord Parkway North

Concord, NC 28027

704-786-0104

sfoster@fosteranimalhospital.com

https://www.fosteranimalhospital.com

https://www.facebook.com/fosteranimalhospital

 

 

 

 

 

“He Doesn’t Act Like He’s In Pain”

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“He doesn’t act like he’s in pain”.

That’s a common phrase we hear in our exam rooms or in conversations with clients that have older pets. We also hear, “she sleeps more because she’s old”, “he doesn’t go on walks as much because he’s old”, or “he’s gotten grumpier in his old age”.

While some of that may be true, reality is dogs and cats are masters at hiding chronic pain. Whether that goes back generations when there habitat was more outside and they needed more of a  survival instinct is up for debate. We do see different pain tolerances among different patients. But the average pet doesn’t show signs of chronic pain that we as humans feel would be typical signs.

So, sleeping more, walking less, being grumpy may well be “normal” signs of chronic pain for our pets.

Let’s look at what may be driving chronic pain and what we can do about it.

Arthritis is the most common cause of chronic pain in older pets. Arthritis can involve any joint, as well as, the spine. Arthritis is defined as the painful inflammation and stiffness of joints. Some pets develop arthritis from wear and tear over the years. Some pets will have arthritic joints from disease, such as, hip dysplasia. Some will have arthritis from injuries, for example, a torn cranial cruciate ligament. And there are other causes as well.

Chronic pain may result from other physical ailments: intervertebral disc disease, fibrotic muscle disease, or neuropathic pain.

The good news is, we have many ways to deal with chronic pain in your pet.

There are many different prescription medications that are available. The majority of the medicines are approved for dogs. There are some for cats but not as many. This is because cats are unable to tolerate many of these medications. Some of these drugs deal with inflammation and pain and some are for pain only. Sometimes, we will safely use a combination of these to help our patients feel and function better.

Neutraceuticals, supplements, and Chinese herbs are another way to relieve chronic pain. In fact, this is oftentimes the first line of defense. These supplements help nourish the joints and some have natural anti-inflammatory ability as well. There are a ton of these available but not all are reliable or effective. We suggest asking us for guidelines before starting any supplement.

Rehabilitation Therapy is a new and up-and-coming option for pets with chronic pain, injuries, and for post-op recovery. Rehab utilizes many of the same techniques that physical therapy does in humans. Manual therapy, massage, passive range of motion, and therapeutic exercises are often employed. We also use different modalities: underwater treadmill, LASER, land treadmill, and more. The response to therapy is remarkable and helps pets regain pain-free function. While many degenerative issues are not curable, Rehabilitation Therapy can decrease chronic pain, improve strength, improve neurological function, and promote healing. We even have access to acupuncture, platelet rich plasma, and stem cell therapy!

If any of this reminds you of your pet, contact us today!

Foster Animal Hospital and Paws In Motion Canine Rehabilitation Center: 704-786-0104

Foster Animal Clinic at Parkway Commons: 704-262-7387.

 

All the best,

Stephen E Foster, DVM, CCRT

Foster Animal Hospital, P.A.

Foster Animal Clinic at Parkway Commons

Paws In Motion Canine Rehabilitation Center

730 Concord Parkway North

Concord, NC 28027

704-786-0104

sfoster@fosteranimalhospital.com

 

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Paws In Motion Canine Rehabilitation Center

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Canine Rehab, similar to physical therapy in human medicine, is ideal for dogs that have been injured, undergone surgery or who suffer from arthritis, obesity, or neurological disease. By using Rehabilitation techniques and modalities we can maximize your pet’s ability to recover physically while minimizing his/her pain. Some signs of pain and discomfort are as follows: Sleeps more/ Restlessness, especially at night Lethargic, doesn’t want to walk as much or at all, Cannot jump onto bed or sofa, Pants more, Lameness, Stiffness, Whines or moans for no apparent reason, Irritability or personality changes, any or all of the above but doesn’t seem or act painful. Below is a list of services that we offer.

  • Weave Cones
    • When walking through vertical weave cones it helps develop coordination and balance while learning to turn and pivot.
  • Initial Assessment
    • To begin an assessment, the patient is observed at rest and at several gaits. General palpation is performed to determine proper symmetry and muscle atrophy. Postural reflexes, ROM measurements and proprioception testing are performed. Every tendon, ligament, muscle and joint from the tip of the nose to the tail is assessed.
  • Cavaletti Rails
    • Helps dogs learn how to negotiate obstacles and walk over them by lifting their limbs to the appropriate height.
  • Underwater Treadmill
    • This is effective for improving strength, muscular endurance, cardio respiratory endurance, ROM, agility, psychological well-being, while minimizing pain; beneficial for post-op fractures, Cranial Cruciate Ligament stabilization, neurological conditions, tendinitis, and conditioning.
  • LASER (Light Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation)
    • LASER is used to accelerate wound and joint healing, to promote muscle regeneration, acute and chronic pain control, decrease edema (swelling), neurological conditions, and post–op care. It is measured in Joules/cm² (dose of laser energy).
  • Dry Needling
    • Dry Needling is the use of either solid filiform needles (acupuncture needles) or hollow-core hypodermic needles for muscle pain from trigger points (knots); sometimes known as intramuscular stimulation.
  • Gulick
    • A measuring tape with a spring tension device used to measure limb circumference. Measures muscle mass around thigh.
  • Goniometer
    • Device measures joint angles of flexion and extension. The measurements are given in degrees.
  • ESTIM (Electrical Stimulation)
    • Helps to increase muscle strength, muscle re-education, increasing ROM, correction of structural abnormalities, improving muscle tone, accelerating wound healing, edema (swelling) reduction, muscle spasm reduction, and enhancing trans dermal administration of medication.
  • TENS (Trans cutaneous Electrical Stimulation Nerve Stimulation)
    • TENS works transcutaneously (through the skin) through surface electrodes to excite nerves
  • Massage
    • Is the manipulation of the soft tissues of the body, helps to relieve stress, anxiety and discomfort, helps to reduce muscle spasms and soft tissue discomfort, relief from pain, reduce tension, and help to sedate the nervous system
    • Techniques: Stroking, Effleurage, Petrissage, Compressions
  • Stretching
    • Improves flexibility of the joints and extensibility of periarticular tissues (tissues around a joint), muscles and tendons; beneficial with conditions like shortening of tissues, reduced mobility, injury and neurological conditions.
  • PROM (Passive Range of Motion)
    • Is useful to diminish the effects of disuse and immobilization. There is no muscle contraction performed, helps to decrease pain and improves rate of recovery.
  • Balance Board
    • Is used to provide balance and proprioceptive training from the forelimbs or side to side

Here is a link to our Rehabilitation website page

https://www.fosteranimalhospital.com/veterinary-services/canine-rehabilitation.html

 

Watch Me Rehab!

Hello Friends!

I’m excited to show you my newest Canine Rehabilitation Therapy video!

Have you ever wondered what I do during my rehab sessions at Paws In Motion Canine Rehabilitation Center? Well, Candace (my Certified Canine Rehabilitation Assistant) doesn’t just massage knots out of my muscles, she makes me work hard! But it’s ok, because that’s what makes my knees strong.

Here’s a video of one of the exercises I do called ‘Sit to Stand’. I have to balance on an inflated ball called a ‘peanut’ while I repeatedly sit and stand (for treats, of course).

This exercise helps strengthen the muscles in my legs, especially the ones around my knees. My knees sometimes pop in and out of place which hurts and makes me skip a few steps. Once my muscles get stronger, they will hold my knee joint in place better and they won’t pop out of place anymore.

That’s good news because if I can make my joints stronger now, I won’t have lots of joint issues when I get to be a lot older. Well, I better go now, I hear Candace calling me for my next canine rehab session.

Until Next Time,

~Amadeus

To Flex or Not to Flex?

To flex or not to flex? That was the question I asked myself during my canine rehabilitation therapy this week. Candace, my certified canine rehabilitation assistant, was making me do all sorts of yoga poses today!

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I have to say that it does feel really good! It helps take away all my tension.

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It also makes me limber so I can do more exercising on the treadmill to help build up the muscle around my knees. I have to admit, I used to think that canine rehabilitation wouldn’t help me feel better, but wow, was I ever wrong!

Yoga 1

 

All of this therapy is making me feel great! I may be 8 human years old, but you would never know it! I bounce around like a puppy again! I can’t wait for my next canine rehabilitation therapy session!

Until next time,

~Amadeus

Hey Friends!

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It’s Amadeus again. I’m so glad to see you! I’ve been doing a lot of relaxing lately. I even missed a week of my rehab therapy because mom had to go out of town for a work seminar & I got to lay around all week.

I didn’t realize how much I needed my rehab therapy twice a week until after mom came back in town. Oh boy! When I went back to Paws In Motion Canine Rehabilitation Center to see Candace, I could tell I really needed my therapy!

Amadeus

Candace was doing my soft tissue massage therapy like usual and all of a sudden I could feel my back muscles start to twitch. They were hurting. I didn’t realize how bad my back could feel just by missing a week of therapy. I sure am glad that Candace is working on my muscles to make them feel better and stop them from hurting.

I don’t ever want to miss another Canine Rehabilitation appointment!

~Amadeus

Underwater Treadmill?!?

Hey!

It’s me again, Amadeus! I’ve got to tell you about my week at Paws In Motion Canine Rehabilitiation. It was so weird! But, in a good way!

I went to my canine rehab appointment like usual on Friday but when I got there, my Certified Canine Rehabilitation Assistant, Candace told me that I was going to use the Underwater Treadmill today. The WHAT?!?!? Underwater Treadmill? What does that even mean?

Amadeus

I have to admit, I was pretty suspicious the rest of the morning. Luckily, I was able to see one of my rehab buddies, Shepp, in the Underwater Treadmill first.  He did a lot better than I did though. I kept trying to stop walking but that didn’t help. Here’s a video of my buddy Shepp during his rehab session (Click the link):   Shepp Underwater Treadmill

When it was my turn, it took me a while to get used to the water moving all around me, but I started to get the hang of it. I walk on the land treadmill twice a week, so I started to realize that it’s the same kind of thing. I just keep walking.

I could feel the movement of the water and it made me focus on my balance better so it didn’t push me from side to side. I also felt the resistance from walking in the water. It definitely gave me a good workout!

I can’t wait until my next visit! I am going to have mom take a video of me so I can show you all how good I’m doing in rehab!

~Amadeus

My Rehab Experience…

Amadeus

Today my adventures brought me to Paws In Motion Canine Rehabilitation Center at Foster Animal Hospital. Dr. Steve Foster evaluated me from head to toe to see if I need rehab. I was shocked that he found some problems. I know I’ve been having knee issues and a bit of pain in my lower back, but I never thought it was something that rehab therapy could help with.

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Dr. Foster told my mom what he found during my Rehabilitation Assessment. He told her that I have lower back pain. This is something I’ve been hiding from mom, so I’m glad Dr. Foster finally told her so we can make it go away. He also told her that my knee caps are loose. I can feel my knees popping in and out but I didn’t know rehab could make them better. He found all my muscle knots on the front part of my thighs, too.

Amadeus

Mom was glad that Dr. Foster found these problems that I’ve been hiding from her. She was excited to know that Dr. Foster and Candace Lafond are certified in Canine Rehabilitation and they can help me feel better! I started my rehabilitation therapy today and it felt really good! Candace does massage therapy on my legs to help loosen my muscle knots and I get LASER therapy to reduce inflammation in my knees and lower back. When I get my LASER therapy, I get to wear these cool shades called “Doggles” to protect my eyes. Dr. Foster and Candace wear a pair too. Don’t we look cool?

Amadeus Doggles

I’m going to Paws In Motion Canine Rehabilitation Center two times a week so I will have updates for you as I go along. I can’t wait to feel the results of my new therapy! Thank you Dr. Foster & Candace for helping me feel great again!

~Amadeus

CANINE REHAB: What’s in a name?

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It’s funny at times, when we hear certain words and our minds portray something other than what is intended. At times, our staff will tell a client that I am unavailable because I am in rehab. This statement has been met with pause, with a chuckle, with an “Oh my”, and sometimes with an understanding affirmation. Just to be certain here, when I am in rehab, I am performing Canine Rehab on a patient!

We use the term Canine Rehabilitation Therapy because we are not allowed to use the term Physical Therapy. The trained professionals that are Physical Therapists have the legal right, and rightfully so, to the title Physical Therapist. But just because the names are different, the practices have many similarities.

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Canine Rehabbers are first and foremost concerned with the well being and functionality of the patient. Can I improve my patient’s ability to function, e.g. walk, run, eliminate, perform life’s daily functions? Can I help to control or eliminate pain? weakness? incoordination?

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The answer to these questions is usually yes. I say usually, because there are no guarantees that we can help every patient. But the majority of the time we can. I will also emphasize the word help. Many chronic, degenerative conditions are not curable. BUT, they can be improved upon.

I became a Certified Canine Rehabilitation Therapist two years ago and have loved every minute of it. The vast majority of my cases have seen significant improvement when compared to where we started. I have performed Canine Rehab on geriatric patients, neurological patients, post-op patients, and those with unspecified injuries. It is extremely rewarding to see the gains they have made to normal or mostly normal functionality (depending on the individual’s situation).

Please feel free to browse our website and learn more about Paws In Motion Canine Rehabilitation Center: https://www.fosteranimalhospital.com/veterinary-services/canine-rehabilitation.html. I am also a phone call, 704-786-0104 or an email, sfoster@fosteranimalhospital.com away!

 

All the best,

Stephen E Foster, DVM, CCRT

Foster Animal Hospital, P.A.

Paws In Motion Canine Rehabilitation Center

730 Concord Parkway North

Concord, NC 28027

704-786-0104

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Paws In Motion Canine Rehabilitation Center- Press Release

Canine Rehabilitation Comes To Concord
02/18/2013
For Immediate Release
Canine Rehabilitation Comes To Concord
Concord, NC – (February 18, 2013) Foster Animal Hospital has been providing Concord with superior veterinary care for over 50 years and is proud to announce certified canine rehabilitation is now available.
Dr. Steve Foster, son of founder Dr. Tom Foster and current co-owner of Foster Animal Hospital, recently became interested in Canine Rehabilitation at a continuing education lecture. “Canine Rehabilitation is very similar to physical therapy and reading about the successes with dogs, I became fully energized to be a part of this exciting new field. I wanted to bring this service to our hospital and our area,” states Dr. Steve Foster. In March 2012, Dr. Foster completed his required courses and completed an internship for certification.
What is Canine Rehab? Basically it is Canine physical therapy. However, physical therapy is a human term; therefore, the appropriate term in veterinary medicine is Canine Rehabilitation. Just as in physical therapy, Canine Rehab helps to restore appropriate functionality to our patients. Whether the issue is due to trauma, a surgical procedure such as anterior cruciate ligament repair, degenerative arthritis, obesity, a neurological issue such as intervertebral disc disease, or others, Canine Rehab can help restore functionality.
After six months of working with local pets and owners, Dr. Foster shared, “The results I have seen have been nothing short of amazing. Patients’ lives have been extended, patients’ quality of life has been markedly improved, and clients are ecstatic that their ‘babies’ are recovering from surgery faster and completely. Geriatric dogs are active and happy again and have a new lease on life. As a veterinary practitioner of almost 28 years, Canine Rehabilitation Therapy is one of the best career decisions I have made. Seeing my patients do so well is especially rewarding. All post-op dogs, neurological cases, and older patients should experience the wonderful benefits of Canine Rehabilitation Therapy.”
Foster Animal Hospital is launching Paws in Motion Canine Rehabilitation Center which will offer full therapy services custom to the pet’s individual needs. From laser to manual therapy, each case is unique. Dr. Foster evaluates each patient to customize a rehab plan in order to reach the owner’s goals for their pet. To find out more, please visit www.fosteranimalhosptial.com or the FAH blog at https://www.fosteranimalhospital.com/blog/
Foster Animal Hospital www.fosteranimalhospital.com
Foster Animal Hospital offers full-service veterinary care and pet services for dogs and cats. We are proud of our more than 50-year reputation in the community, along with our commitment to providing modern, up-to-date veterinary care. Our progressive methods and the latest thinking in pet care make us the #1 choice in Concord, North Carolina

What our clients are sharing…

“I made an appointment with Dr. Steve Foster knowing in my heart that Molly, our 13 year old Lab, only had days to live. Her arthritis had become so bad in her left front elbow and her back legs that I could no longer bear to see her suffer. Through the tears, I explained Molly’s problem. Dr. Steve asked me if I would be willing to try rehabilitation/physical therapy. This was the best thing I have ever done for Molly. After several sessions, her limp is gone and her back legs move independently where before the back legs did the old man shuffle. If you have a dog like Molly it is definitely worth doing therapy. It saved her life. Words cannot express our gratitude.”
~ Michelle

“Our walk was longer and very interesting. Jackson does not sit or lay down which indicates he is more comfortable walking. HOWEVER, he is showing his stubborn streak of planting his feet and refusing to move when he sees something interesting. Last night it was a neighbor’s garden. He was totally focused and standing with his feet firmly planted. It was very hot and I got a little lax with the leash. He sensed the lack of tension and bounded in the garden. He jumped a rabbit!!! The energy was amazing. He didn’t go far and returned when I called him but it was a Jackson miracle. Afterwards, he turned towards home and was ready for water and a nap!”
~ Janice

“My family took me to see Dr. Foster and he thought that I either had severe arthritis in my back and hips and perhaps some neurological deficits which made use of my legs very difficult. He suggested arthritis medicine and pain medicine and then a new program to make an effort to strengthen my legs through physical therapy and rehabilitation. On Mondays and Wednesdays my dad would put me in the front seat beside him and take me into the hospital and I was met by the nicest girls. I was treated like a queen and got a lot of attention. I had a funny haircut so Dr. Foster could do laser therapy to my hips. I did a little better at first and then I had a bad spell where I almost could not get around at all. We took a couple of weeks off and started working hard again. My daddy was worried that I would not improve. He thought it was time to call in hospice. Dr. Steve and I proved him wrong. Mother was happy as I continue to make improvements over the last two months. I still have periods of stumbling and I need a little help getting up the front steps in the house. I now spend more time in the house and get so much more attention. When I go for walks in the neighborhood the cats stay away from me. Neighbors are amazed at how well I get around. I got a new hairdo and bath for the summer. My parents and sister Diana love me so much probably because they realize how close they were to losing me. I cannot say enough good things about the people at the hospital. They have loved me as much as my parents. Dr. Steve has pushed me hard and made me work for all of my improvement. I owe all of my improvement in the quality of my life to Dr. Steve and the girls. Without the new expertise of Dr. Steve and the compassion of everyone, I would probably not be here. Rejuvenated and Rehabilitated Pup, Cleopatra”
~ Dr. Robert