Physical Rehabilitation for the Management of Canine Hip Dysplasia

Vet Clin North Am Small Anim Pract. 2017 Jul;47(4):823-850. doi: 10.1016/j.cvsm.2017.02.006.


Hip dysplasia is among the most common orthopedic conditions affecting dogs. Joint laxity is responsible for abnormal development of the femoral head and acetabulum, leading to excessive wear of the articular cartilage. Wear leads to secondary osteoarthritis. Rehabilitation is either conservative or after surgical management. Conservative rehabilitation therapies are directed at decreasing pain, improving hip range of motion (ROM), and building or maintaining muscle mass. Postoperatively, rehabilitation focuses on decreasing postoperative pain and inflammation, improving comfort and limb use, and protecting the surgical site. Once the patient has healed, rehabilitation is directed at improving ROM and promoting muscle mass.

Keywords: Femoral head and neck ostectomy; Hip dysplasia; Hip laxity; Juvenile pubic symphysiodesis; Osteoarthritis; Therapeutic modalities; Total hip replacement; Triple pelvic osteotomy.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Complementary Therapies / methods
  • Complementary Therapies / veterinary*
  • Conservative Treatment / methods
  • Conservative Treatment / veterinary*
  • Dog Diseases / therapy
  • Dogs
  • Hip Dysplasia, Canine / surgery
  • Hip Dysplasia, Canine / therapy*
  • Joint Instability / therapy
  • Joint Instability / veterinary
  • Osteotomy / veterinary
  • Physical Conditioning, Animal / methods
  • Physical Therapy Modalities / veterinary*
  • Range of Motion, Articular