The benefits of swimming for dogs are very similar to those for humans. Swimming involves almost all of the muscles required for movement, without the concussive stresses of walking or running. Also, because water resistance is greater than air resistance, the muscles have to work harder.
Swimming has the benefit of achieving this level of work on the muscles, improving strength and tone and working the cardio-vascular and respiratory systems, without the impact of unsupported exercise, with the associated damage that can cause.
In fit dogs, swimming , can be used as a supplementary form of exercise to improve strength and stamina.
Hydrotherapy in our heated pool provides a soothing, non-weight bearing way to increase strength and movement and can help towards:
• Chronic pain
• Improving range of motion
• Increasing flexibility
“Budge is a miniature, wire-haired daschund, almost seven years old. About two months ago a calcified spinal vertebra resulted in total paralysis of the hind quarters and incontinence. Emergency surgery, vitamin supplements and a number of weeks of anxious waiting produced no improvement whatsoever. Then my vet suggested swimming sessions at ‘Therapaws’ in Siddlesham. I was sceptical, believing the dog’s spinal cord to be damaged beyond repair but willing to try anything by the this time. That was three weeks ago, with three swims a week. Budge now swims completely unaided and is starting to walk a few shaky, hesitant steps on all four legs and the incontinence is considerably reduced. For a normally nervous dog, it is remarkable the way he has taken to his swimming lessons. I am now much more confident that Budge will very soon be able to go for proper walks with his brother and me.”