When someone recently asked me to write this article on the health benefits of canine hydrotherapy, my mind tried to embrace what that article would actually say…. as water therapy is so much deeper than what people usually think. To me, it was as if someone had just asked me to write about the size of outer space… i.e. vast… endless… almost too big for words…. But I’ll give it a try!
The main reason why most people seek out canine hydrotherapy is usually to help the physical
body of their dog in some fashion so we’ll start there.
The benefits of swimming and moving in water on the physical body are well known and have
been used for centuries. Because of the increased resistance to movement, a 5 minute swim is
equivalent to about a 5 mile run. The buoyancy of water supports and lessens stress on the joints,
encourages freer movement and provides a safe environment for exercise. A client will seek canine hydrotherapy for reasons that include geriatrics and arthritis, paralysis and other mobility issues, pre and post surgical rehabilitation, injury prevention and rehabilitation, helping obesity, dysplasia, increasing body awareness, balance, and coordination and to just plain help fitness and muscle tone.