Support, Therapy and Rehabilitation (STAR) clinic
With more than five bespoke services to offer, our support, therapy and rehabilitation clinic will have your pet feeling like new in no time
At the STAR Vet Clinic we like to think that our genuine caring nature and passion for pets speaks for itself –that’s because we really do care. Our general veterinary surgery was born as a result of our dedication to making animals better at our support, therapy and rehabilitation (S.T.A.R) clinic.
At the STAR Vet Clinic we are proud to be one of only a handful of vet-led referral clinics in the UK, dedicated to rehabilitation, pain management and sports medicine. We also provide care for all pets, no matter what their age, condition or occupation. As well as seeing older, arthritic pets, we can help those recovering from injury, working dogs, and even those who have an important job to do, such as police dogs, gun dogs and guide dogs.
There is so much we can do now to help our pets recover from illness or injury. With a little bit of extra knowledge and understanding of biomechanics, pain management and alternative/complementary therapies, a whole new world of treatment options opens up for our pets.
By having a team with additional training and qualification in Veterinary Science (including a Canine Rehabilitation Therapist and a vet with a General Practitioners Certificate in Chronic Pain Management and Western Veterinary Acupuncture), we are able to manage and treat the underlying causes of pain and optimise your pet’s performance, often allowing them to go on to live a long, happy and pain-free life.
Emma adds: “Some patients can’t cope with pharmaceuticals because of underlying medical conditions. In these cases we must take advantage of alternative complementary techniques to help…”
Please note : The additional services we’re able to offer at our STAR Vet Clinic include (but are not limited to) acupuncture, laser therapy, physiotherapy, hydrotherapy and therapeutic ultrasound, as well as pre and post season check-ups for sporting/working dogs, and a number of other treatments and techniques.
Pain is a highly subjective phenomenon and the most recent definition of pain provided by the International Association for the Study of Pain (IASP) is as follows:
‘Pain is whatever the patient says it is’
Pain can affect your pet in many ways. It is a stressor and, as such, will impact hugely, not only on their mobility but also on their general health and well being. It is important to classify accurately the type of pain that your pet is experiencing in order to treat it as effectively as possible to ensure that suffering is minimised.
Without the ability to speak directly to our patients it is important that we are sensitive to the more subtle cues that your pet provides us, particularly in the case of chronic pain. Using different examination techniques, gait analysis and taking the time to gather an in-depth history from the client about your pet’s behaviour at home, we are able to provide a pain management strategies based on the type of pain picture they are presenting.
These procedures will often involve a multimodal approach, using both medication combined with acupuncture, laser therapy and other physical therapy approaches as appropriate for each case. Using a combination of pain relief treatments, we are able to ensure we can provide your pet with the best possible levels of pain relief and will improve their overall well being and prevent suffering.
At the S.T.A.R Clinic we consider rehabilitation to be a very important part of the recovery process following illness or injury. Whether performed as an alternative to surgery (where appropriate) or as a post-surgical treatment, rehabilitation therapy is designed around each individual patient to ensure a thorough, long-lasting recovery.
The treatment modalities available at the STAR Clinic include:
- Joint and soft tissue mobilisations
- Physical therapy (exercises)
- Therapeutic ultrasound
- Transcutaneous electrical neuromuscular stimulation (TENS)
- Neuromuscular electrical stimulation (NMES)
- Pulsed electromagnetic field therapy (pEMF)
- Laser therapy
- Hydrotherapy – aquatic treadmill
A state of the art Gait Analysis System allows the collect data about the mobility of each patient. Data can be collected repeatedly through the course of a patient’s rehabilitation program to allow an assessment to be made of the patient’s progress. It is also possible to identify mild, subclinical lameness in sporting dogs to detect areas of weakness enabling early intervention and preventing worsening of previously unidentifiable injuries.
Many dogs place heavy demands on their bodies. Just as professional athletes regularly visit physiotherapists, chiropractors, personal trainers etc, so should those dogs that are subjected to the same type of stresses. Sometimes, injuries can go unnoticed until they deteriorate and then become a serious threat to that athlete’s long-term ability to compete.
Routine preventative care can help these dogs prepare their bodies for the stresses they are put under and, importantly, identify small problems before they become big problems. Routine fitness assessments allow us to tailor training programs to each canine- athlete’s needs and so can ensure that the your animal is maintained at peak fitness throughout the season.
Every sport is very different and so a thorough understanding of the discipline that your dog is involved in and the type of injuries that the discipline may incur is vital in developing an effective conditioning program and correct training methods. As the old adage says ….”prevention is better than cure”.
Some examples of those dogs that can benefit from a sports medicine/fitness assessment include:
- Active family pets – just because these dogs are not formally canine athletes does not mean that they’re not subjected to the same, if not more, rigours during their daily activity. Chasing balls, catching frizbees, racing around the park with other dogs, all involve significant strenuous activity.
- Competition dogs – agility dogs, flyable dogs, herding dogs, gun dogs etc. Each kind of competition can place unique stresses on a dog’s body.
- Show dogs – whether it be a conformation champion or a canine celebrity, fluidity of movement and overall strength and cardiovascular fitness are critical to the success they will have in the ring
- Working dogs – unique to this group of dogs (police, army, search and rescue, customs) they are expected to perform their job, which consists of strenuous activity, without any time for stretching or warm up techniques. Therefore it is important that they are provided with a regular conditioning program to ensure that they stay in peak condition ready for any immediate bursts of activity that they may be asked to engage in.
If you would like more information about our S.T.A.R Clinic, please don’t hesitate to contact us on 01530 270170 and speak with Emma personally.
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Address: STAR Vet Clinic, Unit 12
Elms Business Park
Phone: 01530 270170
Monday : 8.00 am - 8.00 pm
Tuesday : 8.00 am - 7.00 pm
Wednesday : 8.00 am - 8.00 pm
Thursday : 8.00 am - 7.00 pm
Friday : 8.00 am - 7.00 pm
Saturday : 9.00 am - 1.00 pm
Sunday : Closed