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A Terrier's Holistic Recovery from Hip Surgery

When Natalie was told that her three-year-old dog needed hip surgery, she was devastated. She wondered if her little terrier mix, Zoey, would ever be able to run, play and chase squirrels after femoral head ostectomy (FHO) surgery[1].

After being assured by her veterinarian and other experts that small dogs do especially well with this hip surgery, Natalie began to breathe easier. Everyone she consulted told Natalie that her canine companion would be running around again in no time!

After more than three months post-surgery, the terrier still wouldn’t use her leg.

But that was not the case with Zoey. While many vets say that dogs should be weight bearing two to three weeks after FHO surgery, Zoey was still not standing on her leg after three months!

Worse, the dog’s leg was stiff and her muscles were atrophied. Natalie, an experienced physical therapist, did rehabilitation exercises with her dog. She also took Zoey to swim therapy (canine hydrotherapy), which was...

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Healing a Dog's Neck Injury

 

Vicki found her black-and-white dog suddenly unable to pick up his head. The dog, whose name is Nicky, was moving very slowly, holding his head unnaturally low and still. Vicki immediately rushed the 17-pound dog to the veterinarian, who fortunately ruled out a spinal injury. Nicky was diagnosed with a soft tissue injury and prescribed anti-inflammatories and rest. The vet also gave the okay for me to work with Nicky to help him recover fully.

 

How exactly the dog injured his neck was anyone’s guess, but the ten-year-old canine dynamo was often seen jumping off beds, couches and stone walls. Nicky, who was probably a mix of Chihuahua, Cocker Spaniel and Rat Terrier, may have had a collision while roughhousing with one of his larger canine siblings.  He also excelled at doing the “zoomies,” running in circles at top speed around their expansive back yard. It was this enthusiasm for motion that helped him become a fine canine flyball athlete. Nicky...

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