VCA SouthPaws Veterinary Specialists & Emergency Center


Welcome to VCA SouthPaws Veterinary Specialists & Emergency Center Rehabilitation Department! Our hospital has a fully equipped, state-of-art rehabilitation center for treatment of orthopedic and neurologic conditions, both acute and chronic. Rehabilitation services are also used to aid f post-operative patients achieve a speedy recovery.

VCA SouthPaws Rehabilitation Department, managed by Carol Wasmucky, BSPT, helps pets recover from injuries, traumas, and surgeries. In helping pets recover and regain mobility, Carol draws on her animal rehabilitation training, and years of experience treating human physical therapy and sports medicine patients. In addition to providing a full range of rehabilitative, conditioning, and preventive treatments for the pets, time is also spent teaching pet owners appropriate therapeutic techniques and how to manage their pet's condition at home. Treatment at home is especially useful for pets with chronic arthritis, neurological diseases, and other conditions.

When to consider rehabilitative therapy?

  • Post-operative pain, inflammation, decreased mobility following soft tissue, orthopedic or neurological surgeries
  • Retraining athletic dogs to full function following injury, surgery, or illness ('return to sports!')
  • Improving mobility, muscle strength, and balance for arthritic dogs and cats
  • Maximizing mobility and balance for neuromuscular disease and injury patients
  • Post-amputation patients

Rehabilitative treatments and services include:

  • Exercises for daily home care and management
  • Proprioceptive skills training and balance exercises
  • Therapeutic massage
  • Exercises to improve range of motion, flexibility and stretching ability
  • Heat and cold therapy
  • Strength training and conditioning
  • Therapeutic Ultrasound
  • Electrical stimulation

What is Animal Rehabilitation?

Animal rehabilitation is the use of therapeutic exercises combined with additional modalities such as ultrasound, cryotherapy, and neuromuscular electrical stimulation to improve the recovery of patients with both acute and chronic conditions.

How Will My Pet Benefit From Animal Rehabilitation?

Animal rehabilitation can restore, maintain and promote optimal function and mobility; enhance recovery postoperatively; alleviate pain; improve circulation, coordination and range of motion; provide confidence and comfort in geriatric patients.

Is My Pet A Candidate For Rehabilitation?

Pets of all ages, sizes and breeds can benefit from animal rehabilitation. Any animal suffering from chronic pain, arthritis, obesity or muscle weakness can experience an enhanced quality of life as a result of rehabilitation.

Conditions That Respond Well To Rehabilitation:

Orthopedic Conditions:

  • Anterior(Crainal) Cruciate Ligament Tears
  • Arthritis
  • Hip Dysplasia
  • Patellar Luxations
  • Fractures
  • Post-op amputation patients
  • Osteochondritis Dessicans
  • Soft Tissue Injuries

Neurological Conditions:

  • Degenerative Myelopathy
  • Fibrocartilaginous Emboli
  • Intervertebral Disc Disease
  • Lumbosacral Stenosis

General Health/Wellness:

  • Athletic Conditioning
  • Cardiovascular Fitness
  • Obesity-Weight Loss


Services Offered in Rehabilitation

Veterinarians in Rehabilitation


General Practice

We have over 600 animal hospitals in 41 states and 4 Canadian provinces that are staffed by more than 3,000 fully-qualified, dedicated and compassionate veterinarians, with more than 400 being board-certified specialists.

The nationwide VCA family of general practice hospitals give your pet the very best in medical care, providing a full range of general medical and surgical services as well as specialized treatments such as wellness, spay/neuter, advanced diagnostic services (MRI/CT Scan), internal medicine, oncology, ophthalmology, dermatology, cardiology, neurology, boarding, and grooming. Services may vary by location.

Our family of pet hospitals stands out by delivering the greatest resources in order provide the highest quality care available for your pets. By maintaining the highest standards of pet health care available anywhere, we emphasize prevention as well as healing. We provide continuing education programs to our doctors and staff and promote the open exchange of professional knowledge and expertise. And finally, we have established a consistent program of procedures and techniques, proven to be the most effective in keeping pets healthy.

Find a VCA General Care Animal Hospital near you:


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Emergency Care


24/7/365, if your pet has a medical emergency, you can find us at the following address:

TEL: 703-752-9100

Click here for directions to our location.

VCA SouthPaws Veterinary Specialists & Emergency Center is a fully-equipped 24/7/365 emergency hospital serving pets and their people in Northern Virginia and the greater Washington DC metro area. If you suspect your pet is having a medical crisis, our experienced team of veterinarians, technicians and assistants are here to assist you.

Our Emergency and Critical Care units can assist in all of the following situations requiring immediate medical attention: Auto accidents, traumatic injuries (fractures, bites, burns, lacerations, wounds), respiratory emergencies (choking, difficulty breathing), vomiting, diarrhea, difficulty urinating/defecating, shock, loss of consciousness, dizziness, staggering, tremors, seizures, paralysis, toxic reactions, poison ingestion, labor and delivery problems, blood in urine or feces, swollen, hard, painful abdomen, heatstroke.