Is Rehabilitation the Right Choice for Your Senior Pet?

Do you have an older pet that is having a hard time getting up in the morning? Are they slower on their walks? Reluctant to play like they used to? If so, maybe it’s time for a visit with your veterinarian.

As your pet ages (an average of 3.5yrs every 6 months!), the signs of aging become more noticeable and it is often thought of as just that….“oh he’s just getting older”.  However aging is not a disease. It’s the symptoms of aging that affect the quality of your pet’s life and these symptoms can be treated.

There are several things that can be done to help manage and treat the signs of aging in your elderly pet.  Your veterinarian will perform a complete physical exam; run a blood panel to assess their overall health and organ function and offer guidance and advice on nutritional or behavioral concerns which change as your pet ages. In some cases, radiographs may be taken to help identify osteoarthritis or abnormalities in their bones, lungs, heart or abdomen. Once you have a better overall picture of your senior pet’s health, a plan specific to your pet’s needs can be devised. This may or may not include things such as a diet change, adopting a new exercise routine, an age appropriate vaccine protocol, the use of supplements or NSAIDS (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory) and the introduction of a rehabilitation program.


Van Isle Veterinary Hospital is thrilled to be able to offer this new service to our senior patients. Pet rehabilitation (commonly known as physiotherapy in the human world) can help strengthen your pet’s body, which helps to maintain their balance. By performing specific exercises and therapeutic modalities your pet can increase strength and endurance. There are wonderful positive psychological effects for pets and owners when performing rehabilitation. This is a tool that increases the bond between you and your four-legged companion. It can allow you to be more in tune with your pet’s day to day comfort and quality of life and allow you to assess when it is time for a follow-up visit with your veterinarian.


There are several benefits to performing physical rehabilitation with animals. It will improve the biomechanics and flexibility of their body and can reduce pain, allowing them to move more confidently. Physical rehabilitation is non-invasive and can make such a difference in your pet’s temperament. One wonderful aspect of rehabilitation is it can help prevent further injury through owner and trainer education.

Amy Physio

If this is something that interests you, please discuss this with your family veterinarian. As with people, rehabilitation isn’t right for every pet. Your veterinarian can assess your pet and see if physical rehabilitation can not only be beneficial, or perhaps slow down some of those uncomfortable and inconvenient symptoms of aging!

Written by Van Isle Veterinary Hospital


Get a Cupcake and Support BC Animals in Need During Treat Week (Feb 24 - Mar 1, 2020)

Van Isle Veterinary Hospital is super excited to be hosting our 4th annual cupcake day fundraiser! BCSPCA celebrates “Treat Week” across the Province from Feb 24th – March 1st 2020 where business, pet owners and animal lovers can bake up a storm and sell treats with the proceeds going to BC animals in need.

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Last updated: March 30, 2021

Dear Clients,

With recent changes to restrictions on businesses, we are pleased to advise that effective May 25, 2020 the restrictions on veterinary practices have been lifted. Based on these changes, below are some important updates to our operating policies.


This includes vaccines, wellness exams, blood work, spays and neuters, dental services, and more!

As you can imagine, we have a significant backlog of surgeries and wellness/vaccine exams to catch up on and we will be working hard over the next several weeks to do just that. We want to thank everyone in advance for your patience while we work through this. Although restrictions have been lifted, our health and safety protocols have not. It is important we continue to follow the guidelines set out by Worksafe BC and social distance our large team as much as possible. This means although we can offer these elective services, we are doing much fewer during the day then we were pre-COVID.


We are very excited to welcome you back into our lobby! We have put some important safety measures in place to help keep our clients and our team safe.


The use of our online store for easy ordering, payment and delivery of our pet's food, flea and tick medications. Orders over $100 can be delivered to your home for free! CLICK HERE


During the first 8 weeks of COVID, we were operating as a 24-hour facility to better serve our community and to maintain social distancing within our team. However, as the COVID-19 situation changes, so do we!

Our team of doctors felt it was important to get back to performing your pet's much needed regular services. In order to do so safely, we had to once again change the way we do business. 

As such, effective October 6, 2020, we will no longer be available for after-hours, on call services between midnight and 7:00 am. After-hours emergency care will be referred to Central Island Veterinary Emergency Hospital between the hours of midnight - 7:00 am. They can be reached at 250-933-0913.

We will continue to be available until midnight for your call-in, after hours needs.

Our regular hours of operation remain the same:

Monday - Friday: 8:00 am - 8:00 pm

Saturday & Sunday: 8:00 am - 4:30 pm

Thank you for your patience and understanding, and we look forward to seeing you and your furry family members again!

- Your dedicated team at Van Isle Veterinary Hospital