From: Selected Treats,
For years, hydrotherapy has played a vital role in healing humans and animals with physical injuries, but notoriously hydrophobic cats were left well out of the watery wellness equation. Until now, that is.
Meet Nazzaning, a six year old Turkish Van cat who was suffering from partial paralysis in her front left paw.
As her breed are renowned natural swimmers, the animal neurologist who was taking care of the poorly NYC kitty suggested a referral to Water 4 Dogs, a Manhattan-based animal rehabilitation centre that is normally reserved for canine patients, in an effort to help her walk again.
““Her muscles needed to learn how to move the correct way again, and because she’s partially buoyant in water, if she made a mistake it was much less severe than if she was walking on dry land,” specialist vet Boaz Levitin explained.
Apparently Nazzaning was apprehensive at first and, like many of her species, was very vocal about the unusual situation she found herself in. However, nine sessions later, she has mellowed considerably and far from panicking when bobbing about in the specially designed pool, she has learnt to relax and swim with ever growing strength. The benefits can be seen on land too, with her owner Florence Rostami remarking that Nazzaning’s balance has improved and she can now walk unaided.
““I really believe that if she didn’t go to therapy, she may not have found the confidence to walk again,” Rostami proudly continued, before adding that she definitely thought that the $160 sessions were worth the investment.
The centre now hopes that the treatment, which helps keep the body upright and eases pressure on injuries whilst encouraging movement, can be adapted to help other species. Hydrotherapy also provides a great body work out for healthier patients, so humans take note: if a cat can do it, maybe it’s time for you to take the plunge!
Alison is a freelance journalist, blogger and life-long Londoner. A subject matter magpie and self-confessed make up junkie, if it's new, a little bit different and promises great things, she'll be onto it in a flash.See my profile »