This past Christmas was…interesting (see blog post Happy New Year (and belated Merry Christmas)!). My fur-baby, Bella, the love of my life (see previous post My fur-baby, Bella) was very sick and we spent Christmas day in the vet ER. Bella was diagnosed with disc disease and it was recommended that she begin acupuncture, cold laser therapy.
Since Christmas, Bella has done four treatments of acupuncture, cold laser treatment and massage. She is doing phenomenally well! So well in fact, her holistic vet mentioned making her a case study. However, she still has disc disease and therefore, it is important to being exercising her carefully so that she builds up her core strength and keeps the disease at bay.
This is important because as a little dog (under 8 pounds), she continues to jump. It is unavoidable, although I have made life as easy for her as possible by building stairs and keeping her sleeping area low to the grounds. Nevertheless, the more she jumps, the more she aggravates her disease.
Hydrotherapy was recommended for managing disc disease. After doing some research and talking to several groups on FB, I decided to see a professional, licensed animal hydrotherapist before attempting it on my own. Pictured below is Bella at her first appointment!
Bella absolutely detests the water. Even with her Miss-Priss attitude, she did great at her first appointment and walked in 6 inches of water for 18 minutes (an excellent first beginning). The water is heated to 90 degrees Fahrenheit, so she doesn’t get too cold while working out.
The plan is to do several more appointments with the licensed professional before attempting it here at home. Once I feel comfortable to take over her therapy, I will be exercising her either in the bathtub or a kiddy pool. The latter option will be much more feasible once the weather starts to get warm.
Bella is my life and I will do whatever it takes to make sure that she is as happy and healthy as possible. Hopefully, the hydrotherapy will keep her strong and prohibit another painful Christmas!
If you are interested in hydrotherapy for your own fur-baby, check out these links: