As both a Chartered Physiotherapist in human healthcare and an ACPAT Veterinary Physiotherapist I can tell you first hand the galactic differences in the healthcare offered for both animals and humans. Yes animals and humans do have multiple visible and functional differences; and yes it is true that animals tend to recover at a more efficient rate than their human counterparts following trauma or major surgery. However... Wouldn't it be reassuring to know that if your dog was ill or had specific health needs that they had access to all of the healthcare specialists within a multi-disciplinary team, as you would expect if it was you in need of care?
Physiotherapy in the Veterinary world isn't yet routine as it is in human healthcare and when Physiotherapy is offered it often isn't by a Chartered Physiotherapist. Unfortunately exercises (often referred to as 'physio') with no appropriate clinical reasoning, individualisation or appropriate application are given out all too frequently by other veterinary professionals. These poorly prescribed exercises can sometimes have more of a detrimental effect on the recovery of your dog in an acute setting, and be less beneficial in the management of long term conditions.
There is significant research into Physiotherapy input and rehabilitation in human healthcare demonstrating the benefits in pain management, post-operative recovery, management of long term conditions, health education & performance enhancement to name a few. Considering canine physiology and human physiology are comparable there is no reason why these benefits cannot be sought in our canine companions.
The article below discusses why having a Physiotherapist as a part of your dog's veterinary team is vital in ensuring they have access to the appropriate specialist professionals.
I recently graduated from the University of West of England with a Distinction in my Masters degree and I successfully completed some pretty pioneering research into the influence of the canine working harness on thoracic limb kinematics (how a dog's harness might effect their forelimb movement) which I am currently in the stage of editing for publication.
On top of this I happened to be awarded the ACPAT Award for Dedication to the profession and making a good contribution. It is so great to be recognised for the hard work, determination and dedication that goes into such a huge piece of work... And trophy winning is not an everyday occurrence!