Animal Rehabilitation Centre

Our brand new, state-of-the-art Animal Rehabilitation Centre (we call it The ARC because it’s a bit like Noah’s!) is one of only a handful of veterinary led clinics dedicated to rehabilitation and pain management in the UK. Thanks to significant investment and European Funding (EAFRD and LEADER) our Animal Rehabilitation Centre can offer your pet bespoke programmes of therapies designed to return them to an active life as soon as possible. Our treatments can help improve function and pain control for your pet whether they are recovering from surgery, experiencing reduced mobility because of painful conditions like arthritis, or under-performing as a sports/working dog. Examinations, assessments and treatments are all prescribed by a veterinary surgeon qualified in rehabilitation and physiotherapy. Oakhill is extremely proud of our cutting-edge Animal Rehabilitation Centre, not only can we help our wonderful Lake District community but as one of only a few veterinary-led centres of its kind we are naturally happy to accept referrals for specialist treatments from other vets, and from further afield too.

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Animal Rehabilitation Centre

'The ARC' - a short film by Oakhill

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What treatments are available?

Hydrotherapy treatments use specially chosen exercises carried out in our extra- large underwater treadmill. A course of these treatments is a superb way of rehabilitating pets of all sizes. Controlled exercise in the warm water (28 -30degrees Celsius) supports the body and lightens the load on painful joints, while working the muscles effectively to achieve better function in daily life. If hydro-therapy is deemed an appropriate course of treatment, your pet would be prescribed their own personal treatment programme by our Oakhill vet Marcelle Cassar designed to address your pet’s specific issues.

Aquatic therapy is an invaluable tool for pets suffering from arthritis as it warms the joint, softens stiff tissue allowing an increased range of motion in the joint. In turn this improves circulation to the muscles and strengthens them so they can support the joint more.

Aquatic therapy is also useful for maintaining muscle strength before orthopaedic surgery as well as rehabilitation after surgery. It’s a particularly useful therapy pre and post cruciate surgery, fracture repair and even total hip replacement. It is also an excellent means of helping animals with neurological conditions regain use of their limbs such as recovery from a “slipped disc” or learning to walk with a normal gait again.  It’s also good fun for your pet too!

Regenerative Medicine

Regenerative medicine is a fast-emerging branch of veterinary medicine in which the body’s own cells are used to heal and ultimately regenerate damaged tissues in acute and chronic conditions. This area of medicine includes Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) and Stem Cell therapies with accompanying laser therapy.

How do we decide if your dog is a candidate for RM?

After a full orthopaedic and neurological examination of your pet we combine our findings with the techniques below. We can then gain a full diagnostic picture of your pets’ condition and when all the information is reviewed, we are in a position to advise the best course of treatment for your pet.

Oakhill Vet Group has state of the art radiography equipment. This allows us to do a full assessment of your pet’s spine and limb joints. Radiography is the main stay of osteoarthritis (OA) diagnosis and the first tool usually recommended to diagnose the condition. Radiographic changes that you can visualise in OA include soft tissue swelling, new bone growth and in severe cases quite large deposits of new bone.