Our Pet Rehabilitation Services

Steele Creek Animal Hospital offers the finest and most advanced physical rehabilitation for dogs and cats in the entire Charlotte NC and Upstate SC regions to include pets from Fort Mill, Clover, Gastonia, Lake Wylie, Belmont, and Rock Hill.

Physical RehabilitationAbout Veterinary Physical Rehabilitation

Rehabilitation is the art of using physical manipulations and therapies rather than drugs to relieve pain, enhance healing, and improve function. Our veterinary rehabilitative plans are specially designed for the individual pet and his or her disease process or disability. The ultimate physical rehabilitation goals for your pet are comfort and his or her ability to accomplish daily tasks as normally as possible. The rewards include improved psychological state and quality of life for your pet and your family. Steele Creek Animal Hospital is pleased to offer these important services to our extended community.

Animal Water Therapy

Steele Creek Animal Hospital offers underwater treadmill and swimming programs for your pet's rehabilitation.

Benefits of water therapy include:

  • Patients with poor balance or weakness can stand without fear of falling
  • Patients unable or unwilling to bear full weight when walking are able to stand and/or walk due to the buoyancy of the water
  • Excellent peripheral and cardiac muscle strengthening – improves endurance
  • Soothing and massaging effect of water relaxes the patient, improves circulation, and decreases inflammation
  • Immense psychological benefit for patients who can move, stand, or walk aided by water but cannot do so otherwise
Physical Rehabilitation

The underwater treadmill and swim tank are used often for rehabilitation of:

  • Osteoarthritis
  • Cruciate ligament injury
  • Hip dysplasia
  • Elbow dysplasia
  • Post operative orthopedic and neurologic patients
  • Vestibular disease
  • Intervertebral disc disease
  • Cervical vertebral instability (Wobbler’s)
  • Fibrocartilagenous embolism
  • Degenerative myelopathy
  • Tendon, ligament or muscle strain

Pet water therapy is also valuable for the conditioning of canine athletes as it provides excellent cardiovascular strengthening and total body conditioning in a very safe environment. Animals in need of weight control or weight loss can join our Charlotte animal fitness program where we combine exercise and diet counseling. Even cats can benefit from water therapy as they adapt surprisingly easily.

Therapeutic Exercise for Pets

Goals of veterinary therapeutic exercise are to improve your pet's use of an affected limb, reduce pain, improve balance and proprioception, improve muscle mass and strength, improve daily function, and prevent further injury. Exercise often speeds recovery and has a very positive psychological benefit for your pet and for you, his owner.

Activities include balance exercises, slow and patterned walking, cavalettis, use of physiorolls and theraballs, stair climbing, sit to stand exercises, weight pulling, and ball playing.

Manual Veterinary Therapy

Manual Therapy includes stretching, range of motion exercises, massage and joint mobilization. Application of heat (thermotherapy) and/or cold (cryotherapy) are also used to assist in the repair of injured tissues of your pet by improving circulation, decreasing swelling, decreasing pain and improving flexibility.


Therapeutic Ultrasound for Pets

Physical RehabilitationTherapeutic ultrasound is a common therapy that uses vibration energy to increase blood flow to tissues, decrease pain and muscle spasms, accelerate wound healing, decrease inflammation, and increase extensibility of muscle, tendon, and ligament tissues. Ultrasound Therapy is used for pet tendinopathies, muscle injuries such as iliopsoas tears, wound and fracture healing.

Neuromuscular Electrostimulation

This innovative veterinary therapy is used for pain control, to reduce swelling and edema of injured or surgical tissues, to stimulate neurologic pathways and sensation, and to recruit muscle fibers and muscle reeducation in pets with muscle atrophy or weakness.

Assistive Devices

The ultimate goal of successful animal rehabilitation is to aid your pet in being more comfortable and helping him or her perform the functions necessary for daily living and for enjoying a happy life.

In order to achieve this goal for pets whose recovery is lengthy or incomplete, ambulation assistance in the form of carts, harnesses, braces, and slings are very helpful. Steele Creek Animal Hospital offers assistance in cart fitting and training. Custom braces, splints, harnesses, slings, and foot protection are all frequently used aids.

Pet Laser Therapy, Acupuncture, and Shock Wave Treatment

In addition to the animal rehabilitation services listed above, we also offer the following veterinary therapeutic services. Please follow the links for more information on these therapeutic treatments at Steele Creek Animal Hospital:

Pet Rehabilitation Boarding

Our team of companion animal therapists, veterinary technicians and assistants provide a rehabilitation pet boarding service that allows your pet to be cared for in a safe, comfortable environment while meeting his/her rehabilitation needs. Because clients often travel a great distance for expert rehabilitation care, this service allows pets to receive treatment on a daily basis. Our pet boarding service also meets the needs of pets who are too difficult to manage at home due to size, level of disability and/or client schedule.

Indications for Physical Rehabilitation:

veterinary rehabilitative devicesMedical Conditions:

  • Osteoarthritis
  • Spine or back problems
  • Nerve injury
  • Pain control
  • Joint disease
  • Tendon, ligament and muscle strain
  • Vestibular disease
  • Wounds

Surgical Conditions:

  • Spinal surgery
  • Joint repair or replacement
  • Tendon or ligament repair
  • Bone fractures

Performance enhancement of canine athletes

Weight control and reduction

If you have questions about any of these conditions or your pet's specific needs, please feel free to contact a member of our rehabilitation staff.

Our Veterinary Rehabilitation Doctors:

Dr. Patricia Young completed advanced training in Rehabilitation Therapy at the University of Tennessee in 2005. Inspired by her devotion to help pets live healthier, longer and more comfortable lives, Dr. Young has developed the finest and most advanced physical rehabilitation program for cats and dogs in the Greater Charlotte, NC area. "Motivating animals to recover from injury or surgery requires creativity and compassion," states Dr. Young. "My team is committed to the needs and success of each patient. Over the past 10 years, we have had the privilege of working with some inspiring dogs, cats and owners."

nc/sc pet rehabilitation services