Supportive Slings, Braces, Assistive Devices

This service is available at:
Massachusetts Veterinary Referral Hospital

Supportive Slings and Harnesses:

slingsWe use a variety of supportive slings and harnesses to provide a dog with support in standing and walking.  Slings can be used to support non ambulatory patients, patients with weakness or paralysis of the hindlimbs or to aid in walking with post orthopedic surgery patients.

Walking with the aid of a sling will protect the patient, allow them some mobility, and in the case of neurologically challenged patients, the psychological boost of being in an upright, standing position for the first time in days.  Standing with the aid of a harness provides important sensory feedback, while walking helps to promote the development of muscle mass if it has been lost due to disuse or neurological wasting.  Standing can also help to decrease or prevent congestion of the lungs for patients who would otherwise be lying down for long periods of time.

For post neurological surgery pets or for pets with neurological symptoms we recommend a harness or sling that will provide support of the pelvic region as apposed to a belly sling.  The pelvic support prevents hyperflexion of the spinal cord which can irritate or damage surgical, or painful sites.

Supportive slings come in a range of sizes and harness types. Please call the Sports Medicine and Rehabilitation department if you have questions about your pet and his or her specific needs.

mix breed dog in wheelchair in the woodsVeterinary Orthotics and Prosthetics (VOP), braces, assistive devices

  • Veterinary Orthotics and Prosthetics (VOP)
    • Custom-fabricated Braces
    • Custom-fabricated Prosthetics
  • Wraps and other supportive devices
  • Wheelchair measuring and fitting for neurologic pets who have not regained the ability to walk
  • Harness fittings

Common injuries that may benefit from assistive devices

24 Hour Emergency & Specialty

Boston West Veterinary Emergency and Specialty


Capital District Veterinary Referral Hospital


Massachusetts Veterinary Referral Hospital


Port City Veterinary Referral Hospital