Sophia the dog got more than a bath Thursday. She worked out on an underwater treadmill. She is not the only animal who will benefit from equipment more often found in sports training rooms.
Animals come to the new facility after surgery or injury. It is part of a new rehabilitation and wellness hospital for animals.
Dr. Denis Marcellin-Little has done surgery on animals for years. But he knew something else was needed after the surgery.
"We send them home with very minimal, simplistic instructions about what to do," he said.
The new hospital in Raleigh has everything needed to get small animals back up and moving -- cold packs, ultra sound, soothing music, even exercise balls.
"We can use them (the balls) also to learn to shift weight and support their weight when they stand early in their recovery process," Marcellin-Little said.
The facility will even treat animals who have put on a few extra pounds and need to be jogged back into shape.
Most animals require a few weeks of therapy after surgery. Basic rehabilitation costs from $60 to $100 a day.
The idea of pet rehabilitation has gained ground in recent years, created in part by closer ties between pets and their owners.
"I hear it often," Marcellin-Little said. "This is our child, our little baby."
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