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Client stories

Check out some of the amazing transformations hydrotherapy has made to some of these wonderful dogs.


5 year old bull arab x labrador


My husband and I rescued Luna, a Labrador X Bull Arab, in May 2021 and very soon discovered she had trouble with her back legs. Sometimes she wouldn't be able to get up from sitting and others she would limp or choose not to walk at all. After a visit to the vet and later to a surgeon for x-rays and advice, Luna was diagnosed with bilateral hip dysplasia, luxating patellas in both back knees, and osteoarthritis in both back legs. Surgery was looking very likely, but we were given the option to try some natural therapies first to see if we could make a difference without invasive surgery. One such treatment was hydrotherapy and we chose Madi at Paddling Paws. After almost a year of regular hydrotherapy sessions, I cannot believe the difference this natural treatment has made to my girl. After just three months, we returned to the surgeon who couldn't believe the difference in Luna's legs. Her patellas were no longer freely luxating and she had built incredible muscle in that time that meant she was no longer a candidate for surgery. We decided to continue hydrotherapy as we could see Luna getting better and stronger and that's all thanks to Madi and her expertise. Luna has built a trust with Madi and happily goes into the hydro bath. If we hadn't tried hydro, Luna would most likely have had to undergo painful surgery with months of recovery. As she is incredibly nervous of the vets, this would have caused even more trauma, so I can't thank Madi enough for all her help and genuine care for our beautiful girl.


11 year old labrador


Thanks Paddling Paws for working with Harley these last 2 years! As a Labrador, Harley is a big dog, so after his back 2 legs went with hips dysplasia in April 2020, and he already had arthritis and luxating patellas, we didn’t think he had much of a future. He couldn’t walk and could barely stand or hold his own weight. The Vets put him on pain medication and suggested we see a physiotherapist to start to get some muscle strength back in his legs, as we hadn’t realised with him not walking the muscles had wasted away. We had to move him around in a harness to hold his weight. After a few weeks of this it was suggested he was ready to try hydrotherapy, and we haven’t looked back! As Harley was only able to stand and do a shuffle, Madi had to put in rubber straps to hold him upright in the treadmill and get in with him to help him move. After only 1 session, he walked out of there and happily walked around afterwards. This was such a change from the dog of 1-2 months prior. We did hydrotherapy twice a week with physio as well and slowly his speed was increased as he was able to walk again. After 6 months we dropped back to once a week and he was able to go into the treadmill on his own. Hydrotherapy is excellent in taking the weight off their joints and allowing the dog to exercise without doing further damage whilst rebuilding the muscles and their own strength. Harley has since had a third leg go with elbow dysplasia, but the warm water is great for him, and he loves going there. Madi always greets us with a smile, and adjusts his treatment according to how his joints are for the day and is so patient with him.  Hydrotherapy at Paddling Paws has been the best decision we made to help Harley not only rebuild his leg strength but get him controlled weight bearing exercise. He can now happily do a 20 minute walk each day and has puppy moments again! It’s been a long road of rehabilitation for him, but 2 years on he is happier than ever. He is still on anti-inflammatories and does hydrotherapy once a week but without this I can honestly say that Harley would not be with us today, this has happily given him a second lease on life. Thx Ali & Harley


15 year old beagle


Our 15 year old Beagle ‘Charlie’  had an partially torn ligament in his right knee in February 2022. After 6 weeks of rest and a lot of painkillers a friend recommended Hydrotherapy with Madi at Mona Vale. We decided to give it a go, because surgery was not an option because of Charlie’s age. The moment we met Madi with Charlie we were really impressed with the love, care and dedication Madi approached Charlie. We started with a short session to get Charlie used to it, he is not a dog that likes water very much. Madi showed a lot of patience and understanding. Charlie was tired after the first session, but we felt there was an improvement in his walking. We continued on a weekly basis with gradually longer sessions and faster walking in the underwater treadmill, and after a lot of dedication from (us and) Madi, Charlie is back to his former self, jumping on his favourite sunlounge on the balcony and his favourite couch to sleep. He has not done that since he had his injury. We are now going to fortnightly sessions, and we firmly believe the hydrotherapy with Madi was the best thing to help Charlie heal.   It is certainly worth the perseverance with an injury that is taking a long time to heal. Thanks to Madi and her care Charlie is not limping anymore and back to his happy old self. A wonderful alternative to surgery!

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