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January 17, 2018

Here's our All Hands on Pet book review. The full title is All Hands on Pet - Your How-To Guide on Home Physical Therapy Methods for Pets, and the book is written by veteran physical therapist Susan E. Davis. Inside you'll find deep information for dogs and later in the book even ideas for cats, birds, and other pets. I only read the dog parts. Here's what I think about the book. 


all hands on pet book review

All Hands on Pet Book Review Highlights

All Hands on Pet includes insights on physical therapy methods based on life-stage and specific medical conditions, including some where certain physical therapy strategies aren’t a good idea.

The chapter on puppies is particularly useful, even if you're a longtime dog person. 

Many of the photo illustrations give keen instruction on proper techniques.

You'll find good ideas for dogs facing specific situations, including:

  • Knee injuries or recovery from knee surgeries
  • Hip dysplasia
  • Major spine problems
  • Various scenarios seen in elderly dogs
  • Vaccinosis
  • And many others

All Hands on Pet is definitely a good resource book for high-end dog people who want to know how to use physical therapy methods throughout their dogs' lives. If you're going to read it front to back, my guess is that you will also want to go back and re-read the sections that apply to your specific situation. 

Other News About the Book

I got a good laugh too, when I realized that the book's foreword was written by a friend Jana Rade author of Symptoms to Watch for in Your Dog, which we've also reviewed here on the blog. So, I'm reading along, and thinking, "Wait, I don't remember the author mentioning having a dog named Cookie. The only person I know with a dog named Cookie is Jana."

Davis dedicates the book, in part, to her Heart Dog, Penelope, who "was suddenly and tragically taken from this life during the last weeks of the book's publication." All of us were so sorry to hear the news. All hail Penelope and much love to those who love her.

My Personal Feedback

All Hands on Pet book review wouldn't be complete without a few fair warnings.

How-to content? Based on the how-to in the book's title, I expected more step-by-step content in the book with how-to strategies.

Not an easy read, at times. In addition, several parts of All Hands on Pet are dense with technical explanations and details. Even for someone like me, who has written about veterinary medicine for 20+ years, All Hands on Pet is not an "easy" read. I had to slow down at times and cipher through the meaning -- often re-reading sections several times to figure out if I understood.

Charts too tiny to be readable. One of the very best ideas in the book about keeping detailed charts for the care of elderly dogs is hampered by chart graphics that are unreadable (at least for me). Even with my reading glasses on top of my contacts OR taking out all my vision correction and holding the book mere inches from my eyes, I could not read a couple of charts in the book. 

As You May Recall ...

I do some strength, stretching, and range-of-motion work with Clover on the advice of our rehabilitation veterinarian.  I've shared both the chart we use and some video of our work, if you'd like to take a look. 

About the Author Roxanne Hawn

Trained as a traditional journalist and based in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado, USA, I'm a full-time freelance writer for magazines, websites, and private clients. My areas of specialty include everything in the lifestyles arena, including health and home, personal finance and other consumer interests, relationships and trends, people and business profiles ... and, of course, all things pet related.

I don't just love dogs. I need them in my life. Seriously.

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