Unpicking the world of joint supplements

One of our standard questions we ask all clients is whether your dog is taking any supplements. Whilst there is some good evidence of real added value to a variety of supplements it is also a £50,000,000 industry in the UK known as Nutraceuticals – with that comes some big bucks in advertising spend which can make it difficult to pick through the fact from the fiction. In this article we’ve done our best to unpick, on a very broad and consumer focussed level, the detail behind supplements and reviewed some of the top recommended brands.


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The effects of cold water on your dog

Our crazy Managing Director, along with his wife, has taken to throwing himself in cold water for ‘fun’ under the guise of Wild Swimming. However, recently on a trip to Durdle Door cold water shock started to set in and muscle tightness was a real issue. With this in mind, and being mid-winter at the time of writing, we thought we should cover just what happens when your dog jumps in a river, stream, sea or lake this winter!

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Muscles dogs use during exercise

We are constantly talking about muscles with our dog owners, in this article we have tried to simplify the complexities of what your dogs muscles do and explore which major muscles are used during different types of exercises.

Any dog owner that has run playfully through their local park with their beloved pet has no doubt marvelled at the speed and graceful manoeuvrability a dog possesses. The muscular anatomy of a dog, while serving the same purpose in a dog, differs in structure and function from the muscular system in a human body. Just as the human muscular system is composed of units of tissue connected to the skeletal system, skin, and other muscles, a dog’s muscle anatomy is arranged in a similar fashion. Additionally, both muscular systems use the power of contraction to produce movement.

The muscle anatomy of a dog serves two important purposes. The first, and most obvious, is to facilitate movement of the limbs, head, neck, and joints. An equally important function for muscles is to provide stability to the joints of the body, making it easier for them to function under pressure.

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Weight loss for dogs

So, you’re hitting the gym, cutting the carbs and starting your journey to become the new you – well it is January after all! But what about your dog, have they over indulged or maybe this horrible weather (we’re being battered by Storm Brendan as I write this) is making those walks a little shorter than they normally would be?

It’s thought that around 55% of dogs are overweight. With this in mind, there are likely to be over 60,000 overweight dogs within the catchment area of the Canine Fitness Centre!

Even though we know that 55% of dogs are overweight, 93% of dog owners think their dog is a healthy weight. And even though 93% of dog owners think their dog is a healthy weight, 43% of dog owners actually admit that they don’t know what a normal weight dog looks like. We can’t help are dog lose weight if we don’t know they need to lose it.

In this blog we hope to help you identify healthy dog weights and how to help it get there.

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Conditioning the Canine Athlete

Properly conditioned dogs perform better, are less likely to suffer injuries, when injury does occur they are less severe, and recovery is faster. Fit dogs also suffer less stress which translates to greater stamina and longevity, creating a win–win situation for both dog and handler.

In human athletics and sports, athletes will spend a large proportion of their time training in the gym and exercising appropriately for their chosen sport.  In human sports, the exercises and conditioning we do should be appropriate for the activity we plan to do, for example a marathon runner will do very different training from that of a 100m sprint athlete. Just like humans, the ways we exercise and agility dogs is very different to what we should do with a cani-cross dogs.

By undertaking an appropriate fitness and conditioning programme, you can better prepare the dog’s body to undertake the tasks we ask of it. If your dog has the right strength, balance and flexibility it will be able to adjust itself better, handle more difficult tasks easier both of which may lead to better performance but more importantly reduce the risk of injury should things not go according to plan.

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Treating Iliopsoas Muscle Tears In Dogs

The iliopsoas muscle consists of the fusion of the iliacus and psoas major muscles. The psoas muscle attaches along the underside of the backbones, and the iliacus attaches on the inner side of the pelvis. These two muscles join together and form a common tendon that attaches onto the lesser trochanter of the thigh bone (femur). The function of this muscle is to externally rotate and flex the hip joint. Animals can function without this muscle.

Iliopsoas muscle tears are a relatively common yet infrequently diagnosed injury in dogs. Tearing of this muscle is very painful and causes pain and lameness.

Iliopsoas strains or tears result from excessive stretching of this muscle during highly athletic activities such as agility training or fetching a tennis ball. The injury occurs commonly at or near the muscle-tendon junction, the weak link.

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Working Out With Your Dog, The Right Way

As we all look to burn off those extra Christmas pounds and start the year as we mean to go on, many of us feel the urge to get outside and increase our level of activity.

What better way of doing this than with our canine companions?

Exercising with your pet is a great way to bond and of course has health benefits, both physical and psychological, for both of you. It is estimated that more than 54% of pet dogs are overweight or obese so starting an exercise routine with your dog is an important step toward maintaining a healthy weight like it is for us.

This has the potential to increase both the length and the quality of your dog’s life.

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Understanding Chiropractic Treatments

Does this sound familiar – your dog is in pain or has struggled with its loss of movement, you’ve tried surgery, physiotherapy and hydrotherapy but the discomfort doesn’t entirely go – maybe now is the time to try a dog chiropractor.

Dog chiropractic support is a holistic, all natural approach to treating a number of joint, muscular and skeletal problems that are common in some dogs and certain breeds. The principles and practices behind veterinary chiropractic are nearly identical to those used with humans.

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Using ultra-violet light to protect your dog

We’re reducing the amount of chlorine we use in our pool by 75% thanks to new equipment that sanitises our pool water using ultra violet light and hydroxyl radicals.

We’ve been listening to our dog owners who occasionally worry about their dog being subjected to chlorine. While we’ve always kept our chlorine level low we felt compelled to act.

UV light messes with DNA. When shone on to bacteria or an algae spore it will attack the DNA within the cell and prevent the cell from reproducing. UV light will also inactivate chlorine resistant  parasites such as Cryptosporidium and Giardia.

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