Canine Rehabilitation & Exercise Conditioning

We are proud to combine our passion for animals with evidence based best practices in physiotherapy, and specialized training in canine rehabilitation. Canine rehabilitation is an emerging field helping both the dog and dog owner. The practice recognizes that like people, dogs can benefit from a tailored exercise program and other therapeutic modalities that decrease pain, improve fitness, promote healing, and restore mobility. There is substantial emphasis on examination, subjective and objective evaluation, clinical impression, physical interventions and client education.

Canine rehabilitation aims to:

  • promote physical activity and overall health;
  • prevent and/or rehabilitate disease, injury, and disability;
  • and manage and improve acute and chronic conditions, activity limitations, participation restrictions, and physical performance through intervention and education. (Physiotherapy Canada)

“Canine rehabilitation involves an in- depth education system consisting of anatomy, physiology, common injuries & surgeries, behavioral issues, physical examination, and treatment techniques.” (Animal Rehabilitation Division, Canadian Physiotherapy Association. https://physiotherapy.ca/sites/default/files/animal_rehab.pdf).

The practice of canine rehabilitation is collaborative, valuing the relationships between the animal, owner, veterinarian, and other animal health care providers.

Sarah MacKeigan is a licensed physiotherapist, holding a Diploma in Canine Rehabilitation, and continues further training in both physiotherapy and canine rehabilitation annually.

We help dogs with musculoskeletal injuries, neurologic conditions (i.e. degenerative myelopathy, IVDD, etc), degenerative conditions (i.e. osteoarthritis), post surgical recovery, return to sport after injury, senior dog mobility, equipment fitting and usage (ie. harness, carts, bracing). We also offer “prehab” – a proactive approach to fitness and wellness, reducing the risk of injury while improving function and independence through exercise, stretching, and other therapies.

We currently offer 3 means of canine rehabilitation:

  • Home visits in Nova Scotia, Canada (abiding by Covid-19 safety guidelines and restrictions)
  • Clinic visits (Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, Canada)
  • Virtual consults

(Services may be combined. Subject to change and availability)

Referral Process:

  • Download and complete Vet Consent Form
  • Email Vet Consent Form and client medical file to sarah@upwarddogrehab.com
  • Sarah will contact the dog owner to discuss and answer any questions, and set up a time for an initial assessment
  • The dog owner will also be required to complete an “Intake Form” which will be emailed to them by Sarah.

Questions? Please fill out our contact form.

Have a client you would like to refer? Please download our consent form.