Alaskan Malamute - Tundra


Tundra is more active, displaying a more agile, easier movement and extending his pelvic limbs more freely.

Tundra’s owners are extremely proactive when it comes to the health of all of their dogs and sought myotherapy treatment to support a long-term minor lateral rotation of Tundra’s right limb as he gets older.

Tundra is a classic example of how insidious changes to their muscles can affect a dog’s overall movement and comfort over time. A seemingly innocuous issue such as this may appear to have no impact on a dog’s gait, however almost always has a compensatory impact, leading to pain and tension in the neck and shoulders as the dog shifts its weight to the other forelimb, trunk and hindquarters via the thoracolumbar fascia.

A dog is likely to raise its neck to mitigate the soreness of the foreleg action during movement, quickly triggering a range of other stress points throughout the body; leading to sensitivity in affected paraspinal muscles of the back. This adaptive change within the dog’s muscles will contribute to long-term chronic stiffness and discomfort as the dog continues to adjust its gait.

Since treatment, however, Tundra’s owners have observed a number of positive changes to his behaviour. He has been actively running and engaging more frequently with their other dogs and is showing a more agile, easier movement; extending his pelvic limbs more freely.

Prior to treatment, Tundra would lower his head to prevent being touched and groomed over his chest area, however, after a few sessions, he is now far more comfortable and willingly accepts being groomed.

Rottweiler - Gemma


"Gemma is doing very well at the moment. She seems more mobile than she has done for some time now."

Gemma is a 7 year old Rottweiler who has been plagued with right shoulder issues since she was a couple of years old. She has undergone considerable veterinary exploration and referral including MRI scans, radiographic imaging and endoscopy – all of which resulted in an inconclusive diagnosis.

Gemma now has osteoarthritis in her right elbow and shoulder and is still showing signs of intermittent lameness and stiffness when rising or following play. There are also signs of osteoarthritis to her carpus joints and as a result, her owners are modifying the amount of rough play she is allowed to take part in and are looking into simple but highly effective home modifications to ensure she doesn’t slip when moving around the house which would exacerbate her symptoms through repetitive strain on her shoulders.

Gemma’s owners feel that since myotherapy treatment the stiffness and lameness have become less noticeable and her movement generally is much better. She has more mobility, is more active on her walks and wants to play more than she has for a while so they let her play a little then distract her with a treat – she’s a happier dog.

Giant rabbit - morris


Morris is a privilege to work on; even more so having now seen the extent of his osteoarthritis via his X-rays.

Morris is a giant rabbit with severely arthritic knees - as a prey animal, I wasn't really expecting him to tolerate treatment on any level, however, Morris is a privilege to work on, and even more so having now seen his X-rays. I have never seen bone in such a degenerated condition and Morris is under strict orders to keep his weight down in order to minimize the load on his skeletal system.

Whilst Morris is highly unlikely to accept treatment in the same way as a dog might, he has started to relax more during treatment and feedback from his owner so far is that he is far more mobile, is able to sit up on his back legs and wash his ears - something previously unheard-of, and has taken to standing up on his back legs to steal food - result!

Greyhound - Ted


Ted’s road to recovery is not going to be straightforward, however, he has landed himself the most loving of homes for the rest of his life.

Please meet Ted – the most wonderful, gentle and stoic rescued greyhound from Ireland.

Ted damaged his Achilles in November last year when another dog ran over the back of his leg mid race, despite the damage, he kept on racing. The extent of his injury was only discovered later and he was dumped by his owners at the Galway SPCA the following morning.

What happenned to Ted prior to rescue is not totally clear, however from what we understand, the orthopaedic vet in Ireland, and subsequent x-rays ruled out fractures, his leg was put in a cast and he was treated with crate rest, strapping and some physiotherapy. His notes recorded that his hock did not drop, indicating that the Achilles did not rupture, and a bad strain was assumed.

Ted did not do well in kennels responding badly to stress and he fell a couple of times and it was decided that foster care in the UK arranged by the wonderful Erin Hounds Sighthound Rescue would the best place for him.

Ted still favours taking the weight off it when at a pause on walks or standing, but appears to be walking and trotting well enough. The tendons of the Achilles have tightened giving the impression that his foot does not touch the floor.

His myotherapy treatment has focussed on settling him into his (now failed!) foster home and on building flexibility and strength to his injured leg, as well as tackling the compensatory issues that have arisen due to his altered gait. 

Further specialist investigation now that he is permanently rehomed has indicated a untreated partial gastrocnemius tendon rupture with the superficial digital flexor tendon remaining intact - and it is the action of the SDFT having to do all of the work, in the case of this partial rupture, that is causing Ted's toes to curl under.

Ted's vets will initially try a calcaneotibial screw to immobilise the hock to allow time for the tendon to reattach itself, however Ted may ultimately end up with a pantarsal arthrodesis - a fusing of the whole of the hock joint, in the future.

Ted’s road to recovery is not going to be straightforward, however, he has landed himself the most loving of homes for the rest of his life and I will continue to provide voluntary myotherapy treatment for the charty, for as long as he neeeds it.  This week he finally lay down for treatment – a massive step in the right direction. 

Cocker spaniel - Katy


Katy is the perfect example of how the negative and debilitating effects of pain can affect how our dogs respond to the world around them.

Recently I was asked to treat Katy whose owner had decided to cut their holiday short as a direct result of Katy’s significant change in behaviour. Instead of enjoying her time away playing happily with her siblings, as she would have done in the past, Katy had become intolerant and was both snapping at them, and fighting with them.

She had also started barking at other dogs, as well as strangers in the street – something she would never have done previously.

Katy saw her vet on her return and a multimodal treatment of anti-inflammatories and Galen Myotherapy has seen her back to her gorgeous self.

Since 2002 the Galen Therapy Centre have been correlating the direct connections between chronic muscle pain and a dog’s behaviour. These studies have been compiled through detailed consultations with owners, requesting behavioural information then tracking the reversal of symptoms and behaviours during myotherapy treatment. More information about the link between pain and behaviour can be found at the Galen Therapy Centre

If your dog’s behaviour has changed recently and you haven’t considered it could be pain related, please get in touch.

Cockapoo - Ruby

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‘Ruby had to have surgery in the end, but I'm sure the myotherapy helped her recover quicker. It has been soothing, very relaxing and calming, and has aided in a much faster recovery.’

Ruby is a nine-year-old Cockapoo whose owners sought myotherapy treatment following a cruciate injury earlier on in the year.

Ruby is quite an anxious dog with a slight heart murmur and her owners were understandably not comfortable with general anaesthetic and surgery without an X-ray to ascertain the extent of the damage. Initially exploring conservative management - rest and bracing, they sought myotherapy to relieve the pain and inflammation in her muscles, particularly those of her other hind limb which was now taking the strain, as well as soreness and tension in the muscles of her neck and back.

Following a course of myotherapy, a second veterinary opinion and x-rays, Ruby did undergo surgery and has continued with treatment to support her overall recovery, along with a careful programme of gently increasing exercise and management.

Myotherapy has an important role to play in any postoperative treatment plan; capable of addressing the correct rehabilitation of tissues as well as the needs of the dog’s entire body. A holistic approach is ensuring that possible compensatory issues or areas of referred pain prior to surgery do not impact on Ruby’s future mobility.

Ruby’s recent post-operative check reported no inflammation, a good range of movement and improving muscle tone, she has been allowed to undertake longer walks and controlled running on a long lead. She is continuing to have maintencance myotherapy treatments, every six weeks to maintain her muscular health and mitigate any future ptoblems.

Ruby is a pleasure to treat and her owner Jan Nicholson feels . . . .

‘It's made a tremendous difference. She always enjoys her sessions often laying willingly for massage. Ruby had to have surgery in the end, but I'm sure the myotherapy helped her recover quicker. It has been soothing, very relaxing and calming, and has aided in a much faster recovery.’


Westie - Shona

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Providing myotherapy treatment, on the dogs terms is the only way to win their trust and to treat them effectively. 




Please meet Shona – a nine-year-old Westie with idiopathic hind limb lameness.

Despite her best efforts, Shona’s elderly owner has not been able to get a firm diagnosis and whilst a cruciate injury was initially suspected by her vet, x-rays have since ruled cruciate damage out.

Like many dogs, Shona is a master at hiding her pain and will try every game and displacement activity she can think of to avoid treatment. She has become used to her discomfort – it has become her ‘norm’ so when distracted by a cat or another dog, she easily forgets and will still run full pelt up the garden, distributing all her weight evenly through her pelvic limbs. During her daily activity, however, she will not always weight bear fully and presents stiffness and some tenderness over her hips.

Intermittent lameness is notoriously difficult to diagnose, and treating Shona has not been easy, she remains highly guarded of her affected limb and progress has been very slow. It is essential however to remain mindful of the fact that Galen Therapists only ever provide treatment on the dogs’ terms – this is the only way to win a dog’s trust and provide an effective outcome.

Shona knows that when she's had enough and walks away, she is safe and I will not follow her; she inevitably comes back to me.

Cocker Spaniel - Tilly


‘We simply can’t thank you enough. Tilly is living life to the full again.’

Meet gorgeous Tilly, a 6-year-old Cocker Spaniel who had surgery in June 2016 to remove two damaged thoracic discs. Tilly made a good recovery; her owner is a vet, however, she felt that at times Tilly seemed quite stiff and sore, and was ataxic on her hind legs.
I have been treating Tilly to ease her stiffness; she is now moving more fluidly and her top line is also straighter - she has also been taken off her pain medication.  She continues to have treatment every four to six weeks to ensure her new level of flexibility is maintained.

Tilly had sustained a serious back injury, resulting in the surgical removal of thoracolumbar discs. We had tried hydrotherapy, pain relief medication and physiotherapy during her recovery period.
Tilly responded well to treatment. She does need to be rewarded for keeping still, but she allows the treatment from Sarah in a way that she does not accept handling from me. Her ataxia has improved dramatically, and she can now jump up and moves much more freely. She is able to go for her favourite walks again.
Tilly started myotherapy 9 months after her spinal surgery when her recovery seemed as good as she was going to get, but she was still quite stiff and sore and would fall over if she tried to jump or overstretch herself. She no longer needs daily pain relief medication.