Wheelchairs For Your Pet
Healing Paws Center specializes in wheelchair measurement, fitting, and ordering for your pet. A wheelchair can enable your pet to regain his or her mobility again – it is one tool to help improve your pet’s mobility and quality of life!
A wheelchair is a great option for pets with:
- Degenerative myelopathy (DM)
- Paralysis or other spinal disorder
- Herniated disc or intervertebral disc disease
- Old age
- Wobbler’s disease
- Elbow dysplasia
- Hip dysplasia
- Amputee dogs or tripods or tripawds
- And more!
Why should I consider a wheelchair for my pets?
- Wheelchairs offer us, as owners, an opportunity to improve our pets’ mobility. Your pet WANTS to keep up with you and the rest of the world – a wheelchair can offer this opportunity to run, play, and be a pet!
- A wheelchair restores your pet’s quality of life, allowing them to go for walks again and get involved in all the normal dog pleasures of the day.
Can my pet still use their rear legs in the wheelchair?
- Yes! Depending on the make and model of the wheelchair, your pet can use their rear legs! If they are paralyzed, then we can place the legs in the stirrups on the back of the wheelchair to keep the legs from dragging against the ground.
- Additionally, pairing physical therapy with wheelchair will help your pet maintain and improve their muscle mass and strength. Learn more about physical therapy for your pet here.
My pet has trouble with their front limbs more than their rear limbs. What are my options?
- We can custom measure your pet for front-limb wheelchairs. In this manner, the weight of your pet will be shifted more towards the rear limbs while adding in more support for the front limbs – this will improve your pet’s mobility.
- Again, pairing physical therapy with wheelchair will help your pet maintain and improve their muscle mass and strength. Learn more about physical therapy for your pet here.
I think my pet may need more help to get around than a rear-leg wheelchair.
- We strongly recommend a consultation with our rehabilitation veterinarians to determine the best cart for your pet. There are quad-carts or four wheel wheelchairs that offer support for all four of your pet’s limbs. There are still options for your pet! Call us today to learn more!
How Do I Measure My Pet?
- Healing Paws Center offers measuring, ordering, and post-ordering fitting services for your pet. We work tirelessly to make sure that the wheelchair purchased for your pet is fitted exactly for your pet’s unique measurements and size in order to regain their mobility.
- Unfortunately, wheelchairs are not a ‘one size fits all’ item. Our rehabilitation staff is trained in every aspect of veterinary rehabilitation and assistance devices.
What if my pet hates the cart?
- This is extremely unlikely but impossible to determine before purchase of the wheels. We have never had a pet reject their wheelchair but there are no guarantees.
- We focus on positive reinforcement and love to encourage your pet to use their wheelchair. Gentle encouragement and time will help your pet adjust to their new wheels.
Orthotics and Prosthetics For Your Pet
Mobility devices, such as orthotic braces or prosthetics, are utilized to help increase your pet’s mobility and independence. Orthotic braces can be used to help accommodate a limb that has been affected by trauma, illness, or old age. Prosthetics are utilized to replace part of a limb or a missing limb.
Examples of previous cases that have required an orthotic include carpal collapse (carpal hyperextension) (in which the ligaments of the wrist have become extremely stretched out), Achilles tendon rupture (in which the tendon of the Achilles heel has broken), carpal contracture management (in which the ligaments and tendons of the wrists have contracted), and more.
Watch Balto’s story below to learn more about the custom-made Achilles tendon orthotic!