Specific rehabilitation after injury is an integral part of any physiotherapy programme, and every patient (regardless of species) will be given some form of rehabilitation – in the form of exercises and stretches.

Of course, when working with animals some lateral thinking is required to achieve certain muscle activation or retraining involving a huge range of aids. From treats to stretchy adhesive ‘kinesiotape’ or lycra based ‘dynamic tape’ to encourage muscle activation or postural change, swiss balls and latex resistive band (theraband), poles and obstacles.

For more severe i.e. Post-operatively after severe lameness or injury or chronic injury a more intense rehabilitation programme may be required to ensure the best outcome and recovery. Vetphysio hopes to be able to offer an ‘in-house’ intensive rehabilitation service in the near future, where you can bring your horse for livery and an intense programme of physiotherapy and rehabilitation. Watch this space!

Just as in human physiotherapy, animal rehabilitation can involve improving or maintaining a pain free range of motion (joint, soft tissue and spine), improving muscle activation in a sports-specific way, improving proprioception (awareness of where a body part is in space) and balance, increasing the size and activation of a specific muscle and gradually increasing fitness and cardiovascular capacity.