Dogs with behavioural challenges and the physiotherapy process

We have come to realise that a lot of dog owners feel that their dog would not be suitable for physiotherapy or hydrotherapy because of its behaviour - wether its difficult to handle, struggles with stranger aggression or fear, excessive vocalisation or simply because they are unruly.  Very few dogs are 100% trusting and social, and very few adapt immediatley to novel environments quickly. Pretty much every dog I have ever owned has hated going to the vets, and almost all have been rescue, which tends to come with unique behavioural challenges..

Although there are no formal qualifications for handling difficult animals, I would regard myself as a specialist, having worked with police and security dogs, as well as multiple cases where veterinarians were unable to provide diagnosis due to examination causing fear, aggression or distress to the animal, and even the nicest dog can be prone to outbursts of aggression when they are in pain.

It is for this reason that we offer a mobile veterinary physiotherapy service for dogs where we carry out all canine appointments in the dogs home, where they are most comfortable, Every effort (especially in the early stages of therapy) is made to create a bond with the dog, so it is seen as a rewarding and positive experience for both the dog and owner. Physiotherapy can be carried out with the dog wearing a muzzle if absolutely neccesary, however most dogs, over time, will come to understand that time spent with the therapist is actually rewarding and pleasant. Its genuinely lovely to see a dogs demenaour change over a period of subsequent visits, from one of agression and weariness deep relaxation and trust

The most challenging dogs from a therapy perspective are ones that are not used to having to sit still for any length of time, which is usually made worse if they have had to endure a period of crate rest. In this type of situation therapy switches from passive to active treatments, adapting to the dogs demeanour and needs at the time.

In short, any dog should have the opportunity to benefit from physiotherapy, regardless of its nature or behaviour. If you have any concerns please dont hesitate to contact Scott on 07787 568581 or info@vetruvianpb.com.

Jack Russell