Dog Hydrotherapy and Why It’s So Beneficial

Dogs aren’t just pets, they’re members of the family and if you know your furry family member is suffering with pain or an injury you want to do anything to help them feel better. 

Hydrotherapy or water healing can have significant benefits for your pooch and it shouldn’t be overlooked. 

Here we help you understand what dog hydrotherapy is, look at the different types of water healing and identify the benefits of this therapy for your pup. 

What is dog hydrotherapy? 

Dog hydrotherapy is a form of physiotherapy for dogs that uses water resistance to rehabilitate injuries and relieve pain. 

Dog hydrotherapy can be extremely beneficial for dogs with the following injuries:

  • hip dysplasia
  • arthritis
  • degenerative joint disease
  • torn ACL

How does it work? 

Water healing uses buoyancy, resistance, viscosity and hydrostatic pressure to help your dog move the injured joints. Many people are skeptical as to whether hydrotherapy works but this kind of therapy works because it provides a weightless physical therapy and removes the added pressure of gravity making movement easier and reducing the stress on your doggo’s joints. 

It also acts as an anti-inflammatory as it has the ability to reduce swelling in body tissues. 

Types of dog hydrotherapy

There are a few different types of dog hydrotherapy that all serve a certain purpose. If you’re unsure on which method would be best to suit your dog’s needs best, it’s advised to consult your dog’s vet. 

Hydrotherapy Pools

Hydrotherapy pools such as DoggySwim are sturdy, insulated pools that are specifically designed for water-based exercise and restorative care. They provide resistance to help the range of motion and work well for dogs that are suffering with arthritis or degenerative joint issues. 

The pools come in a variety of sizes, water temperature control and adjustable counter-current jet configurations to deliver the perfect water flow to suit your dogs needs and help them feel safe. 

Underwater Treadmills

This is a very common form of dog therapy and is perfectly suited for dogs with joint problems. The treadmill is submerged under water in a glass chamber. The water creates the resistance that is needed to strengthen the muscles in a low-impact environment. It works by creating improved circulation and increased joint flexibility whilst decreasing joint pain.

Whirlpool Therapy

This kind of therapy is the method that is designed for dogs that are recovering from major surgeries. 

The pool resembles that of a hot tub with a warm jet stream inside the whirlpool which job is to massage your dogs injured muscles. The water level is perfectly placed for your dogs injury and effectively helps to relieve pain and rehabilitate. 

What are the benefits?

Water therapy is designed to stimulate, strengthen and relax the body. It works the same way for dogs as it does for humans and as well as helping joint rehabilitation it can also help to:

  • relieve pain, swelling and stiffness 
  • strengthen muscles
  • increase circulation
  • encourage better digestion
  • help blood circulation
  • aid tissue healing
  • improve your dog’s cardiovascular fitness
  • speed up injury recovery

If you have a nervous or anxious pup, hydrotherapy can also be a great way to help calm and relax your dog, especially when it comes to pet travel, vet trips, fireworks and other experiences that can be traumatic for pets. 

It’s important that if you want your dog to undertake hydrotherapy that it’s carried out by a trained professional and your vet is always consulted beforehand. However, carried out in the right way dog hydrotherapy can be extremely beneficial for your pooch and their rehabilitation.

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