Meet Baxter,

Baxter is a 9-year-old, male neutered Wheaten Terrier that was presented to West Delray Veterinary in the beginning of 2023 due to rear limb lameness and difficulty walking. This led to him slowing down on his walks and lagging behind his housemates. X-rays showed signs of hip dysplasia with osteoarthritis of both hip joints.

Hip dysplasia is a common skeletal condition that affects dogs, particularly large and giant breeds. It occurs when there is a malformation in the hip joint, which can cause abnormal wear and tear, pain, and eventually lead to arthritis. Hip dysplasia is usually diagnosed through X-rays and can be managed through various treatment options. Early detection and management of hip dysplasia can help improve the overall quality of life for the affected pet and prevent further complications down the line.

Baxter was initially started on joint supplements and pharmaceuticals to help manage his discomfort, but his owner did not notice any significant signs of improvement. We later introduced Baxter to a formal rehabilitation program in which West Delray Veterinary’s rehab technician, Deana, addressed Baxter’s orthopedic condition along with his compensatory muscle changes.

Rehab consisted of manual therapy, which helped improve restrictions in Baxter’s joints,  allowing for more movement through his limbs.

Massage (a type of manual therapy) helped to improve flexibility in the muscles while decreasing muscle spasms that contributed to chronic muscle pain.

Laser therapy was introduced to reduce inflammation and pain associated with arthritis, which improved Baxter’s overall comfort.

Therapeutic exercises were also introduced to help strengthen the muscles that support the joints.

After one month of therapy, Baxter was already showing signs of improvement by tolerating longer walks. Baxter was back to being the leader of the pack in no time! Baxter’s transformation demonstrates how taking a multimodal approach to arthritis through introducing rehabilitation techniques can improve a pet’s overall quality of life. Baxter’s owners are so grateful that the rehab program helped him return back to a playful, mobile, fun-loving dog!

If you are located in the Delray Beach, Boynton Beach, or Boca Raton area and are interested in Integrative Therapy for your pet, please feel free to contact the team at West Delray Veterinary at 561-777-7173 or visit our website at