The AQUATREAD canine underwater treadmill provides a controlled environment for the physical rehabilitation and conditioning of canine patients. It is indicated in:

* Orthopaedic conditions

* Neurological rehabilitation

* Rehabilitation and the palliative care programs of degenerative conditions like osteoarthritis

* Geriatric wellness programs

* Weight management protocols

* Recovery and conditioning of canine athletes

* Fitness and cross-training of canine athletes and show dogs

The underwater treadmill utilises the physical properties of water to minimise compressive forces on joints and stresses on healing tissues. This promotes an earlier return to function after injury or surgery. The low impact, active muscle contraction, increased joint range of motion and a lengthened stride in the water promotes the restoration of normal function.

The buoyancy of water minimises weight-bearing on the joints allowing the patient to exercise more comfortably. It assists the patient to exercise in an upright position encouraging confidence, normal posture and gait pattern.

The compressive effect created by the hydrostatic pressure of water helps reduce blood pooling and oedema in the lower limbs. It also decreases the activity of pain receptors, thus assisting with pain management.

Resistance provided by the water strengthens and tones the muscles and improves the patient’s cardiovascular fitness. The challenge can be adjusted using the speed of the belt, water levels, inclines and water jets.

Exercising in warm water stimulates the release of endorphins and enkephalins in the brain which enhances mood and assists with pain management.

The operator-controlled environment allows each patient’s program to be individualised

* Protocols can be adjusted during a session

* When in the tank, a therapist can palpate and assess joint movement, joint stability, and muscle contractions

* The therapist can enhance walking with manual techniques.

* Outside the tank the gait can be assessed and the challenge adjusted to facilitate the optimal training gait for a patient’s individual needs.

The AQUATREAD canine underwater treadmill has been designed to assist rehabilitation therapists in restoring normal function and movement and so promote the best possible quality of life in all patients.