Restoring our patients' quality of life rehab vets

What is Rehabilitation?

Physical rehabilitation is the treatment of injury or illness to decrease pain and restore function. A rehabilitation veterinarian treats acute injuries soon after they have occurred and chronic injuries or diseases that have been affecting your pet for a long time.

Rest alone after injury usually does not relieve the problems caused by inflammation and spasm; for example, a muscle in spasm cannot get adequate blood supply to heal. The body adapts and protects the injured area long after healing has started. These protective mechanisms alter movement of the whole musculoskeletal system and increase strain on other areas. Rehabilitation should start as soon as possible after injury.

A rehabilitation-trained veterinarian is a muscle, tendon, ligament, nerve and bone expert who uses physical medicine to restore maximal function and relieve pain. Only a veterinarian can provide whole body care, prescribe needed medicines and perform a diagnostic evaluation prior to designing a treatment plan. Your pet will benefit from a close team of clinicians with his or her best interests at heart.

When you and your pet first visit a rehabilitation veterinarian, you will undergo an initial consultation. The doctor will take a history asking detailed questions about your pet's lifestyle and your expectations. Following this, they will perform a thorough physical examination of your pet. The examination will include many measurements. A specific program will then be designed to meet your pet's needs. Examples of treatments are listed on the Conditions Treated page.

To look for an American Association of Rehabilitation Veterinarians member near you, click on the Find a Rehabilitation Veterinarian link.



Photos courtesy of Rosemary J. LoGiudice, DVM, CCRT, CVA, CVSMT, CAC, Integrative Pet Care / Animal Rehabilitation & Therapy
Hanover Park and Chicago, IL

Copyright 2009-17 by the American Association of Rehabilitation Veterinarians. All Rights Reserved.