Therapeutic Exercise – Osteoarthritis (OA) DELETE

OA will be prevalent throughout the cases that you will be working with as a rehab therapist. There will normally be an OA element to all orthopaedic cases, whether this is related to the underlying cause as a result of the injury and a factor that you need to consider for the future. These cases we will consider as part of the following lessons.

To get a fundamental understanding of chronic degenerative OA we will be considering the geriatric patient and OA for this lesson. You are required to complete a case study task. You will need to type your work onto the box at the bottom of this page.

Use Chapter 35 of your core text book to help you. Also the canine arthritis website is a very useful resource.





Here is the Case Scenario:


Polly – 9yr old retriever neutered bitch


Over the last few years, Polly has become increasingly slower on walks. She was diagnosed with general OA and advanced changes to the hips bilaterally; NSAID’s were prescribed to manage pain. Polly has significant muscle atrophy of the hindlimb musculature.  She is overweight weighing 40kg. Over the last few weeks she has become unable to climb the steps to the front door of her home without assistance and is almost at the point that she needs assistance to stand from a recumbent position. 


Active limb ROM is reduced in all four limbs with a very low flight arc (sometimes tripping) allround.  The Vet is happy that the pain is under control.  Polly’s fitness is very low. She is not going on walks anymore, just pottering around the garden. 


  1. Make a problem list, of all the things you need to consider here.  A list of the problems you need to tackle (give this below).
  2. Make an exercise plan for the next four weeks (give this below). Use the CES website to create a plan and instructions for Polly’s fourth week of exercises, considering that she has improved over the first three weeks in accordance with your plan and expectations. Add me as your client in the system and send me the link to the plan, as if Polly was my dog. 
  3. In addition to the exercises you will prescribe, give some guidance for the owner regarding the home environment and any changes that they could make to make Polly’s life easier (give this below).