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Maki​ng a differe​nce in your fur-babies life

Answers To Your Questions

Let Us Ease Your Mind 

K9 Aquatic Care Centre in Walkerton, Ontario is a clinic which offers hydrotherapy and massage for dogs. If you want to learn more about our canine therapy, please scroll through this page to find out the answers. Do not hesitate to give us a call if you can’t find the information you need. We’re happy to talk to you about our services.


Canine Hydrotherapy

What is hydrotherapy?

Hydrotherapy is controlled exercise that takes place in warm water. This medium offers a weightless exercise environment avoiding stress to limbs, tendons and joints. The soothing water provides high resistance & low-impact, enabling dogs to experience full range of motion over their entire body.   

What if I have to cancel?

We understand that sometimes appointments may need to be rescheduled. We appreciate at least 24 hours notice, as a late cancellation may leave a gap which could have been utilized by a dog needing to swim. Failure to arrive without cancelling may result in you having to pay for a swim that is not used.

What do I need to bring?

      • Your dog, leashed.
      • Your dog’s Veterinary Assessment Cognizance Form (if not already sent) 
      • Towels  
      • Suitable clothing you don't mind getting wet – your dog may want to "share" splashes with you! 

What you do not need to bring is a toy – we provide a good selection of pool toys

My dog is not confident in the water and doesn't like swimming, how can you help?

Many dogs that visit us are not “water dogs”. Often it takes a few sessions before they find their confidence and start to enjoy their swims. We have found that quite a few "non-water dog" breeds soon turn into real water babies! Your dog will be gently guided into the water wearing a life jacket and will be closely supported by one or more of our hydrotherapists. We take our time to gain your dogs trust and confidence and strive to make swimming a positive experience.

How many sessions will my dog need?

This depends on the condition of your dog and the rehabilitation that is required. For post-operative swims, your dog may visit 2 times weekly for a few weeks, then come once a week when their fitness improves. Most dogs visit us once a week for mobility, senior swimming or just for fun!

Do I need to be referred by a vet?

We request a Vet Assessment Cognizance form for every dog who swims with us. These forms can be printed out from the website or can be emailed to you, and then taken in to your vet to fill out. We must ensure there are no medical contra-indications prior to beginning therapy or exercise before a dog swims with us.

Massage Therapy

Canine Massage...What is it?

Massage is touch with intent. Various techniques, pressure and movements are used to manipulate every tissue in the body. Massage can include palpating tissue, ligaments, tendons, connective tissue, some visceral work, and of course muscles. Often times it will include stretching and passive range of motion for joint mobilization. Trust is one of the most powerful outcomes of touch.

What can I expect from my dog’s first massage treatment?

Every dog relates to massage in their own way. When we meet with a canine client for the first time, the primary goal is to get to know the dog and develop a relationship with him or her. For some dogs, the first session may cause excitement or even anxiety. Your dog might not relax enough to receive a full body massage. That is totally normal! We can work on certain sections of the body as the dog feels comfortable to allow us to do so.

Massage is usually conducted on the floor. We encourage the pet parent to sit nearby if it allows the dog to relax and enjoy the session. Some dogs chew on a bone or stuffed animal, others snore through the session.

The initial consultation is usually scheduled for 60-90 minutes in length. With future sessions, once your dog knows what to expect and recognizes the comforting and relaxing effects of therapeutic massage, every minute will be maximized for their therapy.

How long are follow-up sessions?

After the first consultation, unless your dog experiences significant changes in his or her condition, sessions will last
between 30-60 minutes.

What should I expect after the massage?

Massage can be an intense experience. Your dog will likely need to go potty and will want to drink a lot of water following the session. Some dogs may feel pain brought on by some of the more specific techniques used to address anomalies in the tissue. If your dog is already experiencing mobility problems, he or she may be less coordinated or tired in the short term. We sometimes use essential oils with canine clients. These oils can sometimes bring about subtle physical changes related to the release of toxins. 

These are all very normal responses to massage during the first 24 hours following a session. If these symptoms continue, there may be something else going on and a visit to the vet could be in order. If you have questions or concerns about your dog’s state after a massage, please don’t hesitate to contact us.

Can you diagnose an injury or illness?

As a canine massage therapist, we are not able to diagnose any injury or illness. Our scope of practice is specifically limited to providing therapeutic massage techniques. Only a licensed veterinarian is permitted to diagnose your pet’s injury or illness. However, if we suspect your dog is experiencing a serious health issue, we will recommend that you schedule an appointment with your veterinarian or, in some cases, seek emergency care.

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