Wrist Care Protocol

Here is a quick look at our procedure here at Kanabearenterprises for wrist care during a long distance dog race (in case you don’t get a chance to see the videos):

Rule of thumb-if a dog limps into a checkpoint, I’m going to care for it to the best of my ability, then drop it prior to departure.

If a dog stiffens up, or ‘puffs’ up a bit in the wrist after laying on the straw for 30-60 minutes, then this is usually minor and can be worked with in most cases and taken for another run.

In this latter scenario, even if the dog has a pronounced limp after cooling down from the previous run, I don’t lose hope, I just work on it using the following protocol-

Ice down the entire wrist for about three minutes.

Get in there with my liniment, really give the affected area a liberal dose (I seriously recommend the use of Mountain Ridge’s Herbal Remedies Liniment. This is going to be one of the most important tools in your vet bag) and spend at least 3-4 minutes alternating between deep tissue and soft stroking massage.

Finish up by wrapping with thin plastic (think Saran wrap or a grocery bag), then covering with Neoprene wrist wrap.

Repeat this process 90 minutes before “go time.”

Just before booting up the team, I carefully re-evaluate the dog by thoroughly warming it up on a leash. If I see the limp smooth out during the warm up (and in most cases you will) then I consider taking the dog for one more leg.

And this last point is absolutely critical–exercise a “slow start” protocol, taking as long as 30 minutes to get up to full cruising speed once departing the checkpoint. Failure to observe this rule will generally result in increased pain and inflammation and the almost certainty of bagging the dog, or at least dropping him by the next checkstop after he limps along not contributing in any meaningful way to the performance of the team.

Thanks for tuning in–more to follow….

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3 Responses to “Wrist Care Protocol”

  1. My Xena is getting older and sometimes we both forget and she overextends herself. I can not find the liniment listed online. Do you have a source? Can it be used for people too? Thanks.

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