Aqua Dog hydrotherapy and recreation centre is a family run business dedicating itself to the care and well-being of all dogs. Aqua Dog Hydrotherapy is the biggest hydrotherapy centre in Northern Ireland. It includes four qualified hydrotherapists and several in training. Joanne Mulholland opened Aqua Dog Hydrotherapy and Recreation centre in January 2016 after months of hydrotherapy training at another local pool.
Joanne first came across hydrotherapy eleven years ago when her own dogs, Leyna and Katie (Who at the time were two Rottweiler pups) were referred to a pool in Lisburn, just a few hundred yards from where Aqua dog is today! Katie was referred at eight months old for hip dysplasia and Leyna was referred two years later for a cruciate ligament. Leyna continued with hydrotherapy throughout her whole life for fitness and weight control benefits after her leg had to be amputated because of an infection she took in her bone. Sadly in 2017 Leyna and Katie both passed away and now Judah and Daisy (both Rottweilers) enjoy the benefits of swimming frequently.
When you arrive at the centre make sure to check that the pool room is clear of other dogs before bringing your own in as some dogs may not be sociable. We like to spend some time letting the dog wander around the pool room and getting comfortable by using toys and lots of cuddles before we do anything. We also talk with the owner and have a discussion to get to know as much as possible about your dog so we can give the best possible personalised treatment.
After this, we will carry out a short health check and then shower down your dog to get rid of any excess dirt and help get the blood flowing around the body. Your dog will be fitted with a life jacket on their first session and will progress to a harness if they meet our criteria in the following sessions. One of our hydrotherapists will then help them into the pool and conduct the session. The time will vary given the dog’s fitness and their reason for coming to us. We encourage the owners to interact as much as possible and stay poolside throughout.
Afterwards, the dog is treated to a secondary shower with shampoo and given a blow-dry and towel down. We then discuss the session with the owner and what our aims will be for future sessions. We hope to see you soon!