We humans have been “taking the waters” for our health for thousands of years, and over the last decade, more dogs have been getting their paws wet for the same reason. Canine hydrotherapy (also called aqua or swim therapy) is essentially warm-water swimming and/or massage for curative purposes—and it’s very effective. Many veterinarians recommend hydrotherapy for athletic conditioning, pre- and post-op care, reducing inflammation around an injury, and relieving arthritis and other chronic conditions. It’s also ideal for exercising older or overweight dogs because water supports the body and takes the weight off sore joints.
Canine hydrotherapy facilities are popping up all over the country, so if your dog might benefit from this healing activity, just look up the term. The best part? Some facilities offer leisure swim time for dogs and owners together. Who needs to swim with dolphins when you can get in a heated pool and play ball with your pooch?