Today’s episode is all about Bella’s trail to recovery from serious injury, and the process of getting back to being an active canine athlete with her dogparents Devin and Pat @colorado_canine in Colorado.
Amazingly enough, Bella was considered a “fearful and undersocialized” dog as a rescue. But since Pat adopted her from Humane Society of Boulder Valley when she was a puppy, Bella has led an active life including trail running, hiking, backpacking, paddle boarding, riding in a bike trailer, skijoring, as well as hanging out on a horse ranch with Devin, and traveling. After a long day on the trails, Pat and Devin like to take her to the brewery patio to hang out and socialize.
Over time, Bella has seen a couple of injuries that are common to extremely athletic dogs. The first was a groin injury several years ago. The most recent was a shoulder injury called Medial Shoulder Instability, or MSI. With the help of an orthopedic specialist at Colorado Canine Orthopedics in Colorado Springs, they were able to discover her condition with an ultrasound. Treatment consisted of Platelet-rich plasma therapy, or PRP. Though Bella’s tendons will never be perfect due to the degenerative nature of her condition, she is in the process of therapy and recovery to live an active and happy life again.
Bella’s ongoing rehabilitation, as well as everyday conditioning known as prehab, include core and stability work. This can include playing tug and tricks like “sit pretty.” Before a trail run or intense workout, she warms up by walking or hiking. Afterwards, Pat and Devin stretch Bella using stretching techniques from Sasha Foster’s The Healthy Way to Stretch Your Dog: A Physical Therapy Approach. Aside from just running, they cross train with other activities like paddle boarding and riding in the bike cart. And of course, it’s important to have rest days.
One of their biggest recommendations is pet insurance. While there are many companies that carry pet insurance and research should always be done before choosing one, Devin and Pat chose Pet Plan. Another book they recommend from Sasha Foster is Canine Crosstraining. They keep Pack-A-Paw harness for emergencies.
Their shout outs go to Dr. Katherine Patrick @northerncoloradocaninerehab, Dr. Amanda Hensley DVM @co.animalrehab, Colorado Canine Ortho @coloradocanineortho, and the inspiring Diesel the Adventure Dog @dieseltheadventuredog.
Thanks for listening!