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Veterinary rehabilitation gives pets and owners hope for recovery and renewed health: Ready Pet GO!

Just as humans need physical rehabilitation from time to time, so do pets! And the options available to them are growing in Northeast Ohio.

WILLOUGHBY HILLS, Ohio — Moose is a 10-year-old English Bulldog who knows how to attract a crowd: A "hunk of burning love" ready to soak up attention anywhere he goes. But that's not what brought him to Cleveland Veterinary Rehabilitation. His sore paw did. 

"Cleveland Veterinary Rehabilitation is a stand-alone veterinary practice devoted entirely to the physical rehabilitation of dogs and cats."

Dr. Laura Surovi opened the practice with her husband Michael Sivo on Chardon Road in Willoughby Hills back in October. It was a dream realized from their own personal experience with their dog, Chauncy

"My husband and I, several years ago, acquired a dog who was quite disabled. I found myself traveling to the other side of town for any level of rehabilitation. During that time I found that I not only enjoyed it, but had a light bulb moment, and said, 'There's nothing on this side of town to service pets with these needs,'" Surovi said. 

Credit: Susan Moses
CVR opened in October of 2022. Its owners believe veterinary care, complemented with other therapies, offer some of the best opportunities for recovery and living pain-free longer.

After working for many years in general private practice, Dr. Surovi developed an interest in pain management and rehabilitation for pets. She saw outcomes improve when traditional veterinary medicine is combined with other therapies. She is also a Certified Veterinary Acupuncturist (CVA), Certified Chinese Herbalist (CVCH) and a Certified Canine Rehabilitation Therapist (CCRT). Dr. Surovi obtained certification in Veterinary Spinal Manipulation Therapy (CVSMT) and earned acceptance into the College of Animal Chiropractors. 

She started providing many of these services through a mobile practice, while making plans to open their own stand-alone center. 

That came to fruition just a few months ago. Today, services at Cleveland Veterinary Rehabilitation include "water therapy," from an underwater treadmill to a resistance pool. 

There's also a gym with plenty of equipment, all of it used with specially designed exercises to improve recovery from injuries or post-surgery. It's also helpful for senior pets, many of whom may be living with pain brought on by osteoarthritis. 

There is also "gait analysis." It's a program that can detect early signs of lameness as well as track how a pet is progressing through therapy. 

"The majority of the pets here really, really do get better. They excel. We're able to not only target pain, but we can work on strengthening them, which is very, very important," Dr. Surovi said. 

What's important for Moose, is getting that paw healed. So he is spending time in hyperbaric oxygen therapy

Cleveland Veterinary Rehabilitation has the only chamber, for veterinary use, in the state of Ohio. 

"Any condition where inflammation is present, it can be used for. So Moose does have a wound and that is the indication for why they were using it for him. We're also now seeing a dog who recently had back surgery, and is having some trouble getting back up on her feet. So using that as a way to decrease inflammation post-operatively is a great option. We have a dog who has an autoimmune disorder, so we're trying to heal some tissues with that. I mean the list is just really endless, to what you can use it for," Surovi said. 

Other services at CVR include acupuncture, laser therapy, chiropractic care, and more.

Just as science and medicine have come a long way in treating human bodies, the same is true for pets. Keeping them active and happy for as long as possible, is all that we, as loving pet owners, can hope for. 

Learn more about Cleveland Veterinary Rehabilitation HERE

Editor's note: Video in the player above was originally published in a previous story on Dec. 7, 2022.

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