How Does it Work?

  • Aquatic therapy challenges coordination and balance.
  • Certain exercises can be safely started sooner in water than on land, allowing earlier opportunities for challenging balance, strength and coordination.
  • Human studies have shown that walking in water improves lean body mass and passive range of motion.

How Does it Help?

  • Dogs and cats with limited mobility can resume weight bearing and gait patterning in the underwater treadmill much sooner than they are able to on land.
  • As water depth increases, weight bearing decreases and the force on a patient’s musculoskeletal system is reduced.  Walking in water makes it easier for a patient to support their body weight.
  • Dogs and cats show improved range of motion in their joints when walking in water, helping us progress through recovery and return to function.
  • Effort and resistance can be adjusted by the water depth, incline and use of flotation devices.
  • The force applied to tissues by the pressure of water helps with proprioception, limb awareness, swelling and edema.