Animal therapy facility moving to Hollis
NASHUA – Providing physical therapy for dogs and other has been successful enough that Horse ’n Hound is building a larger facility in a former dairy farm in Hollis, and plans to move in the spring.
The facility, which provides such things as an aquatic treadmill for dogs in its office in the Fletcher’s Appliance Building on Route 101A, says the move will allow it to create a rehabilitation barn for horses.
“We have often been asked if we can take in severe cases of tendon, ligament, neurological, joint or muscle injury (to horses) and have had to turn away these patients due to our ‘canine-sized’ business facility at our current Nashua location,” said James “J.W.” Brooks, who owns the practice with Jennifer Brooks, his wife, the physical therapist who established the practice.
“Our new location includes a three-stall rehabilitation equine barn offering equine patients the opportunity for intensive physical therapy.”
Jennifer Brooks started as a physical therapist for humans and then switched to PT for horses via “barn calls.” She expanding into house pets and show dogs by opening Horse ’n’ Hound in 2012.
Facilities at the current site include an underwater treadmill for dogs, which allows them to exercise with less strain on injured muscles, joins and tendons, and a variety of therapy materials for cats, dogs and other animals. Some are similar, or even identical, to therapy materials for people, such as ramps or exercise balls, while others are different: There are peanut-shaped exercise balls to handle patients with four legs.
Among the facilities at the new location, which was formerly occupied by Hollis Line Machine Co., will be a heated in-ground therapy pool offering swimming exercises for rehab or fitness training up to eight months of the year. The 14-acre facility will also have an outdoor dog walking path.
Patients include animals that are injured or just getting old, as well as dogs that compete in canine agility tests and need to stay in shape all winter – just like athletes who go to the gym when there’s snow on the ground.
Horse ’n Hound is the only standalone site in Greater Nashua that does physical therapy for pets and is one of the few in the state, although some veterinarians offer the service.
In 2011, New Hampshire law changed to make it easier for licensed therapists to do hands-on work with animals. In some other states, including Vermont and to an extent Massachusetts, only licensed veterinarians can do such work.