Sporting dog

The Sporting Dog

By sporting dog we understand a dog that is in good physical condition and performs some type of exercise regularly, either agility, canicross, mushing, etc.

The first thing we will do is define fitness to then understand how physical therapy can help us with our sporting dog.

Fitness is the sum of:mushing

  1. Cardiovascular endurance: the heart, lungs and blood vessels must be able to properly transport oxygenated blood to the muscles.

  2. Muscle strength: the muscle’s capacity to produce maximum contractions.

  3. Muscular endurance: the muscle’s capacity to perform sustained exercise.

  4. Flexibility: the ability to move a joint and be able to execute its full range of motion.

Therefore, in order to achieve good performance, there must be a combination of:

  1. A cardiovascular component

  2. A muscular component

  3. A motor component

And it is precisely these components that canine physical therapy works on.

First we have the cardiovascular component:

The heart and lungs must be trained to withstand the oxygen requirements and demands that occur during exercise. To do this, first the animal is evaluated and based on the analysis we design a training plan, which can be a ‘get into shape’ training plan, intervals, long distance, height, etc.

Second is the muscular component:

This is the most important item for preventing injuries and lengthening the dog’s sporting life.

Physical therapy helps to prepare the muscle for exertion, identify painful areas (trigger points) and treat them, stretch tendons, ligaments and fibers to avoid shortening and finally to remove waste products produced and accumulated during exercise.

Physical therapy helps to prepare the muscle for exertion, identify painful areas (trigger points) and treat them, stretch tendons, ligaments and fibers to avoid shortening and finally to remove waste products produced and accumulated during exercise.

TENS Pack and balls

Lastly you must work the motor component, improve agility, coordination and the animal’s proprioception, thereby getting a dog with enhanced sporting abilities.

This is the most creative part of physical therapy where we will use a variety of exercise, including:

Cristina Pinell

Triscan Veterinary Center

ortocanis.com