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How Your Dog Can Benefit from Canine Hydrotherapy

Just like humans, canines can suffer from many of the same health ailments. Arthritis, muscle atrophy, spinal injuries and hip dysplasia, among other conditions, can cause great discomfort in dogs if left untreated. Fortunately, hydrotherapy can help your pup recover and regain mobility, just as the water exercise therapy helps humans do the same. According to K9 Country Club, the use of hydrotherapy can reduce a dog’s recovery time by up to 60 percent.

Not only is hydrotherapy used as a treatment for medical injuries and diagnoses, dog owners often seek hydrotherapy for their pup to help control weight, improve coordination and range of motion, prevent injuries, and as general conditioning and massage techniques. 

How Does Hydrotherapy Work?

Hydrotherapy tanks offer dogs the ability to exercise and work on mobility without the effects of gravity. The water-filled tanks keep the body buoyant when submerged, which reduces stress on the joints. The underwater treadmill encourages movement, aiding in rehabilitation and conditioning efforts.

What Are the Benefits of Hydrotherapy?

Chambers with an underwater treadmill create resistance suitable for low-impact muscle strengthening. This can help improve a dog’s joint flexibility, circulation, endurance and strength. It can also aid in improving range of motion and agility. The temperature-controlled water reduces joint swelling and pain, especially in arthritic dogs. Additionally, water exercise encourages better digestion, assists in weight loss, helps rid the body of toxins and can improve the immune system.

What Can Hydrotherapy Treat?

Benefits of this water exercise treatment can impact dogs suffering from a long list of ailments. It is used as a post-surgery recovery method, as well as for pain control, weight control, injury prevention and general conditioning. According to K9 Country Club, hydrotherapy can help treat or improve the following health conditions:

  • Arthritis
  • Muscle atrophy
  • Spinal injury
  • Paralysis
  • Hip dysplasia
  • Gait disruption
  • Muscle stiffness
  • Loss of range of motion

Professionals at facilities like K9 Country Club are able to help your pup reach its recovery and health goals with supervised hydrotherapy sessions. To learn more about canine hydrotherapy or to schedule an appointment, contact K9 Country Club.      

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The Dos and Don’ts for Crate Training Your Puppy

Left on their own, puppies have the tendency to show the devious sides of their personalities – using the couch cushions as chew toys and soiling the carpet. Let’s be honest, puppies are kids. Good inside-the-home behavior is a learning process, and your new friend needs some coaching.

Training your puppy is an important part of being a dog owner. And part of that process involves crate training. Crating your puppy while you’re away from home or even while you’re home, busy with a project that keeps your attention away from your dog, is beneficial for each of you. For you and your family, it helps with house training and provides peace of mind that you won’t return to a destroyed home after a day at the office. For your puppy, the crate provides a safe space—a bedroom of sorts—which alleviates anxiety when you’re away, and establishes routine and expectations.

Follow these dos and don’ts for successful crate training.

5 Things You Must Do

Follow a schedule: Establishing a schedule for feeding time, taking your puppy outside (more than once) and crating him is especially important in the mornings before you leave the house. In the evenings, try not to feed your puppy past 6:30 p.m., so that it leaves plenty of time to take him outside a few times before bedtime. 

Remember key times: Puppies generally need to go outside right when you wake up in the morning, 20-30 minutes after eating, after napping and after playtime. 

Pay attention to the signs: If you’re home, be sure to observe your puppy’s behavior. When he begins to circle around an area, that’s a sure sign it’s time to take a trip outside.

Take your puppy to the same spot: Returning to the same area outside helps your puppy to understand why he’s there. Once your puppy relieves himself, be sure to give him a little praise to reinforce this action. The routine, once learned, becomes habit.

Remove your puppy’s collar or harness when inside the crate: Removing your puppy’s collar or harness when inside his crate is for his own safety.

5 Things You Should Never Do

Never use the crate as a punishment: In order to establish the crate as a safe and positive place, never put your puppy inside of it as a punishment. This action will give the crate a negative association.

If he begins to bark when you put him in the crate, don’t give in: In the beginning, your puppy may bark or cry when placed in the crate. This is normal. Comforting him or letting him back out will only prolong the process for your puppy to get used to his crate. 

Don’t put the crate in an isolated space: This is especially important when you’re home. Puppies feel more comfortable when their owners are nearby. Try to place the crate in an area of your home where your puppy can see you.

Don’t leave him out of the crate if you’re not there to supervise: Until your puppy is grown and good behavior inside the home is learned, refrain from allowing your puppy to roam your house without supervision. This allows more opportunities for mishaps.

Don’t leave him in the crate all day: Puppies just can’t hold it. Though puppies don’t like to urinate where they sleep, if they’re neglected and left inside the crate for too long, it’s not their fault.

Crate training is a process, and one that requires routine and dedication. Accidents will happen, and it’s important not to overreact. As your puppy gets older, time outside the crate can increase. And with positive association with the crate, your dog will have a safe haven to retreat to when needed.

For more tips on crate training your puppy and information about obedience training classes, dog boarding and more, contact K9 Country Club.

(Photo: ©fotojagodka/123RF Stock Photo)

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