At Sheabel Veterinary Hospital, we’re committed to helping your pets live their best lives. Canine rehabilitation increases quality of life and decreases pain by boosting function and mobility of joints and muscles. Using adapted human physical therapy techniques, such as pain control, soft tissue manipulation, stretching, and various exercises, patients become more comfortable and move around easier.


Rehabilitation can help relieve pain and treat symptoms related to many aspects of pet health:

  • Postoperative care following orthopedic surgery, such as ACL repair, back surgery, or fracture repair
  • Soft tissue injury, such as a strain or sprain
  • Spinal cord diseases, such as intervertebral disc disease (IVDD), Wobbler syndrome, degenerative myelopathy, or fibrocartilaginous emboli (FCE)
  • Arthritis, stiff joints, and muscle weakness, especially in geriatric or obese dogs that have trouble with mobility

Sheabel Veterinary Hospital’s rehabilitation plans are based on each pet owner’s schedule and the amount of rehabilitation owners can provide for their pets at home. Owner involvement in the rehabilitation plan is a key component of treatment and maximizes success. However, if you are unable to perform any exercises at home with your pet, we can come up with a plan for complete in-clinic rehabilitation.

When your pet is ready to begin rehabilitation, we will schedule a two-hour consultation. During the consultation, we will ask for an in-depth history of your pet, so be sure to bring all of your pet’s medical records, including when any tests or procedures were performed and information regarding medications, supplements, and diet. We will perform a thorough rehabilitation exam to determine exactly which parts of the body need to be treated. Follow-up rehabilitation appointments will be scheduled at the end of the consultation and are generally 30 to 60 minutes long. Owners are encouraged to be present during any rehabilitation sessions.

Dr. Michelle Arnold is a certified canine rehabilitation therapist through the Canine Rehabilitation Institute. If your pet has a specific disease or ailment and you would like to know if rehabilitation could help, please call Dr. Arnold at 859-268-4444.