Physical rehabilitation is an essential tool in veterinary medicine for many purposes, such as reducing pain and inflammation, improving mobility and function, achieving neuromuscular re-education and increasing the overall comfort of your pet as he or she recovers from injury, illness, and more. At Veterinary Surgical Centers Rehabilitation (VSCR), physical rehabilitation is part of our standard of care, ensuring clients and patients are supported throughout the entire recovery process.
Just like humans, pets can greatly benefit from physical rehabilitation as they recover from joint and muscle trauma and surgery, and to promote geriatric wellness, weight loss, and strength training programs. We see rehabilitation as an essential tool for reducing pain and inflammation and improving mobility and function.
We encourage pet owners to take an active role in their pet’s recovery. Our certified rehabilitation practitioners work with you, the pet owner, to build a customized program as well as a home-based exercise plan for your pet. Offering the latest techniques, including an underwater treadmill, acupuncture, laser therapy, and more, we are committed to making sure your pet’s road to recovery and optimum health is as smooth as possible.
Pain management has grown in the past several years to incorporate more than just non-steroidal and narcotic pain relievers. Pain management is essential with acute injuries and post-operative care, but also important in our pets with chronic pain or dysfunction. Physical rehabilitation and complementary modalities, such as acupuncture, can supplement medications or surgical intervention, if needed, to help improve our pets’ function and overall quality of life. New modalities continue to be developed and become more readily available every year to help our pets live a longer, more comfortable life.
Laser therapy is a non-invasive, painless process that utilizes light to stimulate cells and increase blood flow. It has been effective in treating soft tissue damage, reducing pain and inflammation, and increasing cell growth. Sessions are short and often done in conjunction with physical therapy exercises.
Acupuncture has been practiced throughout the world – most notably in Eastern cultures, for thousands of years. The practice of Acupuncture is becoming more widely used in all cultures, either alone or in combination with Western Medicine, for a variety of ailments. This practice primarily promotes integrated medicine – using acupuncture in combination with more conventional therapy to achieve the best outcome.
Acupuncture is frequently a tool reached for as part of a comprehensive physical rehabilitation and/or pain management program and is commonly used as part of a treatment plan for the following:
Dr. Cameron Pickett Weber grew up in Virginia Beach, Virginia, and graduated from Emory University, Atlanta, Georgia, in 1999 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology and a minor in German Studies. She continued her education by earning her Doctor of Veterinary Medicine from the Virginia-Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine in 2005.
After graduation, Dr. Weber moved to the Northern Virginia area and began working at Pender Veterinary Centre as a general and emergency small animal practitioner. She decided to pursue her interest in rehabilitation medicine and became a Certified Canine Rehabilitation Practitioner through the University of Knoxville, Tennessee, in December 2012.
Dr. Weber joined the rehabilitation department at Veterinary Surgical Centers in May 2013. Her interests include swimming, travel and reading. She especially enjoys spending time with friends, family, her husband and their rambunctious dog, Arya.
Specializing in pain management and acupuncture, Dr. Julie Wentzel is an integral member of our rehabilitation team.
Dr. Wentzel grew up in Annapolis, MD and attended Virginia Tech, graduating in 1998 with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Forestry and Wildlife. She furthered her education by earning a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine from the University Of Illinois College Of Veterinary Medicine.
She completed a Small Animal Internship at Anne Arundel Veterinary Emergency Clinic in Annapolis, MD where she remained an associate for 7 years.
She completed her Certified Veterinary Acupuncture courses in 2013 and is currently working on her Canine Rehabilitation Therapist and Veterinary Pain Practitioner certifications. She is passionate about treating acute and chronic pain to improve her patient’s quality of life and assist in their return to a more active lifestyle.
In her free time, Dr. Wentzel enjoys spending time with her husband, three children and 3 cats. She also enjoys gardening, bird watching, volleyball, and running.
After moving with her family to Leesburg, VA, she spent 2 years serving as an emergency clinician before joining Veterinary Surgical Centers.
A Northern Virginia native, Ashleigh began her veterinary career in 2004 as an assistant for a small animal practice in Herndon. There she developed a love for nursing care and medicine which encouraged her to pursue her technician license. Ashleigh graduated from the Northern Virginia Community College Veterinary Technology program, summa cum laude, in 2009.
Shortly before graduating Ashleigh began working for Veterinary Surgical Centers and became interested in rehabilitative medicine. She graduated from the University of Tennessee’s Canine Rehabilitation program in 2012. She has been exuberantly practicing rehabilitation ever since.
Ashleigh has worked in a variety of veterinary settings (surgical, oncologic, and emergency to name a few) which she feels has given her a unique perspective on rehabilitation medicine. She is passionate about reducing discomfort and improving quality of life and gains particular fulfillment in treating oncologic and geriatric patients.
Her professional interests include pain management, osteoarthritis management, and rehabilitative nursing care. She is a member of the International Veterinary Academy of Pain Management (IVAPM) and hopes to become a Certified Veterinary Pain Practitioner in the near future.
Ashleigh shares her home with her cat, “Michael”, her Beagle, “Harvey”, and her Borzoi “Mstislav.”
Kirsty Oliver earned her Veterinary Nursing Degree from the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons in the U.K., and passed her National Veterinary Technician Exam in 2004 after relocating to New Jersey. In 2005, she became a Certified Canine Rehabilitation Practitioner following completion of the University of Tennessee College of Veterinary Medicine program. In 2010, she became certified in veterinary pain management through the International Veterinary Academy of Pain Management. She and her husband recently relocated to Northern Virginia from Tinton Falls, New Jersey, with their two cats Sarge and Nina Beana, Kirsty in tow. When she is not pursing her passion at work, she enjoys Reiki practice, beading, crocheting, and knitting.
In her role as Rehabilitation Practitioner, Kirsty will work closely with primary veterinarians and pet owners to develop customized physical rehabilitation and pain management plans for pets facing injury, illness, quality of life issues, and much more.
“Could not have asked for a better experience. Much better than most human hospital experiences. Thanks so much.”
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