Hank has been going to hydrotherapy for the last 10 months. He was signed off by his physio back in August.
When Hank first attended hydrotherapy he was in pretty poor shape with very little muscle mass in his core and back legs. His hips were clicking with every step, he was swinging his legs and dragging his feet too. The weekly visits to see Rachel and the homework exercises made a huge difference to Hank!
The fact that Hank was diagnosed so early on in life actually worked in his favour. He was still young enough to be taught to walk properly and pick his feet up rather than just finding a coping mechanism. As a result of this his muscles started to work properly and develop.
Hank has certainly gained a fair amount of muscle tone as a result of being under Rachel’s instruction. His hips no longer click and he rarely drags his feet anymore. Hank now has considerable stride length and is generally a lot more active and happy.
Rachel was happy enough with Hank’s progress for him to be signed off a few month’s ago. However, I decided I wanted him to continue to go once a month for a little while longer. This was just so she could keep an eye on him while he continued to grow.
Hank was officially signed off at his last appointment which was towards the end of August. Rachel has told us to get straight back in contact if we feel he takes a step backwards or if we have any concerns.
By no means have we rectified his hip dysplasia but we have done everything possible (bar surgery) to help him. The improved muscle mass is now hopefully helping to support his hips and prevent any further deterioration. We can’t know for certain what condition his hips are currently in without doing a new set of x-rays. All we can say for now is that both Rachel and Hank’s vet are very happy with his progress. The vet has also said we can now postpone surgery.
We think Hank feels a lot better in himself too. He is a lot more active and runs around in the garden. He wants to play with the girls and certainly makes it known when he thinks it’s time to go for a walk!