On a recent Thursday morning, Cooper, a spunky and happy English bulldog, was enjoying a swim at Water4Dogs, a water therapy center just for dogs in Manhattan. Yep, Cooper, a dog, grabs his towel and heads to a swimming pool twice a week to help keep his weight down.
The scene was every bit as adorable as it sounds. And it Cooper seems to look forward to it.
Water therapy for dogs is an increasingly popular part of the treatment plan when dogs are patients. Water rehabilitation can speed up the recovery process for many dogs, and it’s also much easier on their joints (much like for humans).
Water4Dogs in Manhattan specializes in water therapy. Patients enjoy the use of the underwater treadmill along with a controlled temperature swimming pool. Veterinarians work with patients and their humans to develop a plan that works for them — treatments range from water therapy, acupuncture and laser therapy.
Check out Cooper and two other hard-working furry patients who use water therapy.
Pierre is a six year old French bulldog that suffered from overnight paralysis and lost the use of his hind legs. He was fitted for a mobility cart and participated in a combination of swim therapy, underwater treadmill exercise, acupuncture and laser therapy.
After six months, he began to walk again! He will never walk normally and he still uses his canine cart, but now he is able to be independent again and strut his stuff.
Buzo is a friendly seven year old black labrador who recently underwent surgery due to a back injury. With no use of his hind legs, and a new baby in the home, Buzo temporarily lives at the center.
Buzo relies on a combination of treadmill walking, laser therapy and acupuncture. He has since began to feel his toes and wag his tail. All signs of a great recovery. And of course, the staff loves having him around.
Oh and here’s Cooper, the English bulldog who hits the pool to help keep off excess weight, which can aggravate his elbow dysplasia.
He swims for 30 minutes, twice a week and looks forward to his sessions in the heated pool.
If you’re interested in learning more about water therapy, you can check out Water4Dogs website or a number of other facilities throughout the country.