Pet Exercise, Canine Rehabilitation Subject of New DVD for Pet Owners

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Dog exercise demonstrations make it easy for owners to help pets recovering from back surgery or injury. When a healthy pet exercises, it builds muscle strength, flexibility and stamina for good dog fitness. Cats benefit too.

and a veterinarian also should sign off on an exercise program for any pet just as our own doctors should ensure an exercise program is appropriate for our individual situation.

October is National Physical Therapy Month, and veterinary neurologist Dr. Anne Chauvet is highlighting the benefits of pet exercise with the upcoming release of a new how-to DVD for pet owners.

The DVD, titled Canine Rehabilitation for Spinal Injury or Back Surgery--Including Exercises for Your Pet's Health and Long-Term Fitness, shows pet owners the correct methods for performing core and muscle strengthening exercises as well as exercises for flexibility and coordination, said Chauvet, who founded Veterinary Neuro Services in Sarasota, Fla. The video is scheduled to be available online and through veterinarians and veterinary specialists Dec. 1.

Originally produced to help Chauvet's clients successfully perform physical rehabilitation on their dogs or cats following back surgery or injury, the DVD exercises work equally well for pet owners who want exercises for dogs and cats to improve overall fitness or assist with weight loss for an overweight dog or cat, she said.

Benefits of physical rehabilitation following back surgery or injury include speedier recovery to, or near, pre-injury condition, reduced lameness and pain, and improved use of the affected limbs. For overall dog fitness and cat fitness, benefits include improved muscle strength and joint function, an active range of motion (flexibility), weight reduction and maintenance of a healthy weight, increased stamina and aerobic capacity, improved mental function and reduced chance of injury, she said.

"It is very important for owners who want to help a pet recover from a back injury or surgery to do so only under the continual care of a veterinarian or pet rehabilitation specialist," Chauvet said, "and a veterinarian also should sign off on an exercise program for any pet just as our own doctors should ensure an exercise program is appropriate for our individual situation."

More information on the DVD is available by calling 941-929-1818. Information on dog back injury is available at

Known internationally for her specialized work in the relatively rare field of veterinary neurology, Chauvet routinely performs complex back and brain surgeries on dogs and cats. She also speaks and consults with veterinary practices and organizations globally.

She earned her Doctor of Veterinary Medicine from the University of Saskatchewan in Saskatoon, Canada, completed a small animal medicine/surgery internship at the University of Illinois in Urbana and finished her residency in neurology/neurosurgery at the University of California, Davis. Chauvet has been certified as a rehabilitation therapist by the Canine Rehabilitation Institute of Wellington, Fla.

Physical Therapy Month is sponsored by the American Physical Therapy Association and is observed nationally each October.

About Veterinary Neuro Services:

Dr. Anne Chauvet, one of about 150 veterinary neurologists and neurosurgeons in North America, is the founder of Veterinary Neuro Services in Sarasota, Fla. Veterinary Neuro Services treats brain, spinal cord and neuromuscular conditions in animals and is the only strictly neurology and neurosurgery practice on Florida's Gulf Coast. More information is available by calling 941-929-1818 or online at

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Sue Engelhart
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