In Week 8, we discuss the benefits of massage, how to strengthen your dog’s hind limbs with controlled leash with hill work and touch upon what exercises you should still be doing.
Weekly Rehab Instructions:
Discontinue Moist Heat, PROM and Massage
At this time, it is okay to discontinue moist heat, PROM and massage if your dog is using its limb. However, as far as massage goes, this is something that can be done on a continued basis, if needed. Massage is a great way to bond with your dog.
Controlled Leash with Hill Work
Walking on hills or slopes is a great exercise to strengthen your dog’s hind limbs. When a dog is walking uphill, the majority of its weight is shifted to the rear legs. This will increase weight bearing on the affected leg significantly. Walking uphill will also improve hip and knee extension. Walking downhill is harder because it requires more flexion/extension of the hip, knee, and hock joint.
Make sure to keep an eye on your dog for signs of discomfort. If you think the hill is too steep, only do a portion of the hill or slope.
Exercises you Should Still be Doing
Along with the Controlled Leash with Hill Work, continue to do Sit-to-Stand Exercises, Figure 8’s and Curb Work. The combination of these exercises will help your dog build muscle and strength.