Scout’s House™ Announces Nation’s First Animal Physical Rehabilitation Therapy Consultation Service for Veterinarians

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A unique service for veterinarians that provides customized physical rehabilitation therapy plans for dogs, cats, and other pets has been launched by Scout’s House™, one of California’s leading physical rehabilitation therapy centers for animals. Through this one-of-a-kind service, veterinarians can receive individualized rehabilitation therapy plans designed to help improve the strength, mobility, and functionality of dogs and cats who are geriatric, recovering from injury or surgery, or suffering from chronic or debilitating illnesses and conditions, such as arthritis, disk disease, and degenerative myelopathy.

Therapeutic exercise is an important part of this dog's physical rehabilitation therapy plan.

Through this one-of-a-kind service, veterinarians can receive customized physical rehab therapy plans for dog and cat patients with orthopedic, neurological, or age-related issues.

A unique service for veterinarians that provides customized physical rehabilitation therapy plans for dogs, cats, and other pets has been launched by Scout’s House™, one of California’s leading physical rehabilitation therapy centers for animals.     

Rehabilitation therapy is an emerging field in veterinary medicine and one that veterinarians traditionally receive little training in while in veterinary school. Similar to physical therapy for humans, physical rehabilitation therapy can help to improve the strength, mobility, and functionality of dogs and cats who are geriatric, recovering from injury or surgery, or suffering from chronic or debilitating illnesses and conditions, such as arthritis, disk disease, and degenerative myelopathy.

Through this one-of-a-kind service, veterinarians can receive individualized rehabilitation therapy plans for dogs and cats with orthopedic, neurological, or age-related issues. By tapping the extensive rehab training and experience of Scout’s House’s four staff veterinarians and Director of Rehab Therapy, a licensed physical therapist who is certified in canine rehabilitation therapy, veterinarians can provide their clients with alternative treatments options without having to invest in their own rehabilitation therapy training or equipment. Although the service is for veterinarians only, pet owners may ask their veterinarians to schedule a consultation for their pets.

To use the service, veterinarians simply schedule a consultation and then fax or email the patient’s relevant medical records, radiology reports, and surgical reports to Scout’s House. Director of Rehab Therapy Krista Niebaum, MPT, CCRT, and staff veterinarians will then review the patient’s health records and discuss the physical exam findings and client goals with the attending veterinarian during the phone- or email-based consultation. Afterward, Niebaum and a Scout’s House veterinarian will create a modified rehab therapy treatment plan that is customized for that patient—a plan that can be performed either by the attending veterinarian’s staff in his or her clinic or by the pet’s owner at home. The plan may include:

  •      specific therapeutic exercises and activities for the patient, including order of implementation, repetitions, and frequencies;    
  • a detailed explanation of what each exercise and activity is designed to accomplish, such as building core strength, improving balance or coordination, or preventing muscle atrophy;
  • recommendations for equipment rentals, such as neuromuscular electrical stimulation units or Pulsed Electromagnetic Field therapy units, and step-by-step instructions on when and how to use each device;
  • video links and printed handouts showing the appropriate techniques for performing the exercises or using the equipment;
  • recommendations for assistive devices, such as carpal wraps, splints, braces, and supportive harnesses;
  • an anticipated progression program, if appropriate.

“Over the years, we’ve been contacted by a number of veterinarians who wanted help for specific patients,” says Niebaum. “These veterinarians didn’t have rehab facilities nearby, but they knew that rehab therapy could help their patients—they just didn’t know what to do or how to do it. So we created modified treatment programs for them, which they or their clients then implemented. It was a collaborative effort and the results were great, proving that you don’t always need a hydrotreadmill to do effective rehab therapy.”

Scout’s House is a full-service physical rehabilitation therapy center for animals in Menlo Park, CA, offering rehabilitation therapy services, specialized products, and customized information programs to the owners of special needs pets. Scout’s House helps dogs, cats, and other companion animals who are geriatric, recovering from injury or surgery, or suffering from chronic or debilitating illnesses or conditions to live more comfortable and more functional lives. The company also has an online store (http://scoutshouse.com/store) that gives veterinarians and pet owners worldwide access to the most effective assistive devices available for disabled pets.

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Lisa Stahr


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