Canine rehab is a growing field. This year Americans are expected to spend almost $19 billion on veterinary care, including rehab, up from about $15 billion five years ago, according to the American Pet Products Association in Stamford, Connecticut.

Rehab is now routinely recommended for dogs after debilitating surgery and injuries, and also is increasingly being used as an alternative to surgery and as a method to stimulate elderly dogs’ brains and give them a sense of renewed purpose.

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