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What is Physiotherapy?

Taken from the NAVP website

Veterinary physiotherapy is a science based profession, which provides an holistic approach to each patient by performing a functional assessment following veterinary referral. Physiotherapy for animals can be used alongside veterinary care to help in the treatment or long-term management of many musculoskeletal or neurological injuries and conditions. It is also used in the rehabilitation of the animal, with the aims of reducing pain, improving movement, and restoring normal muscle control and function. Physiotherapy can also be used for performance development of the animal athlete, helping to try to minimise the risk of injury whilst maximising the performance of competitive or working animals.

After having carried out a thorough assessment of your animal, I may typically use a combination of the following approaches in order to help with any problems identified:

1. Manual therapies: these include a wide variety of different massage and soft tissue techniques, joint mobilisations or manipulations, myofascial release, stretches etc.

2. Electrotherapies: the use of therapeutic machines such as ultrasound, laser, pulsed electromagnetic field therapy, , TENS, and electrical muscle stimulation. 

3. Remedial exercise programmes: individual exercise programmes are utilised to help to encourage correct movement patterns and improve muscle strength, endurance, suppleness, proprioception (the animal's awareness of where it's limbs and body are in space), balance and stability as may be required. 

4. Management advice: frequently owners may need additional advice on therapeutic handling of their injured animal, or perhaps how to make appropriate adaptations to an animal's home environment and general management in order to assist in their rehab.

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