decided to utilize our knowledge, experience and love for our canine
companions to open Aqua Dog Rehabilitation. We thought we would help
impove the quality of life for injured and aging dogs. Thankfully, our
clients regularly confirm that we made the right decision, writing to
tell us how well their companions are doing.
Please find some of their letters below, listed by category.
year ago my mom brought me to you and thought maybe you could help put
me back together. I had had cancer surgery and follow-up but Mom said
we can do much better. So off I went to the water tank. I know I gave
you all a hard time during my walks in the under water treadmill, but
that's my style. My twin, Presto, is much better about these things and
of course is the good twin and I play the part of the evil twin, but
boy do I ever have fun.
any rate, I want to thank you for putting me back together in such a
way that the good muscle/nerves began to work and compensated for the
injury that was giving me such fits and starts. Of course, Mom has my
pretty yellow egg at home now for exercise and has learned how to do
the stretches I need (of course not as good as you can do). We also
have a couple of other pieces of equipment to help Mom with my training
So how has
this all helped? Well, a year ago Mom retired me from all performance
venues after I earned my ARCHEX. Can't really do herding or agility
safely anymore. However, I did strike up a deal with Mom and suggested
we start back in obedience (which is NOT my favorite venue) and Rally
once again. We spoke to you and here we are one year later. I earned my
ARCHMX (APDT Rally Master Champion) title a couple of weeks ago ....
hey, just look at the size of that ribbon! To get this title I had to
earn 10 triple Qs with a score of 195 or better for each Q. The first
nine legs I earned were consecutive with all kinds of placements and
perfect scores. When I went for the tenth leg, my bad leg cramped when
I got to the jump and I NQed, something I don't take lightly. Mom was
concerned, but I told her we've come this far let's go for that last
leg. On 5/20/11 we did, and did so in style. I placed in every class,
earned my veterans championship title (after all I may not look or act
it but I AM 11.5 yrs old) and brought home that great big 4 foot ribbon
to commemorate the achievement. We, Mom and I, couldn't have come so
far so fast without my therapy and the supporting training we received
to manage my progress at home. I'm retired from Rally now, but Mom knows better
than to try to retire me completely. Hence I've begun 'Nose Work'
training and live it, and am still taking aim at a UD (which I don't
love so much). Herding and agility days are in my past, but I'm happy
to be working, am feeling (and I understand looking) great as well.
Gotta love life continue to do what we love, team work, in venues in
which I can succeed and thrive. I've earned many, many titles in my
lifetime, but this one means the most: I won, I best the handicap!
Halo & Karen
Dear Dr. Kris,
you so very much for giving me my quality of life back. I may not be
running yet but I am walking and thoroughly enjoying life due to your
efforts and knowledge of what was best for me when I first became lame.
May 5, 2008 Callee was at a local groomer getting groomed so pictures
could be taken when the spring flowers arrive. There was an accident at
the groomers that damaged her spinal cord and left her with a great
deal of paralysis’s in the lower back and back legs, especially the
back left leg.
a week at Red Bank Veterinary Hospital, Callee returned home to begin
recuperation. A few weeks later, under the care of Dr. Kristine Conway
at Aqua Dog Rehabilitation in Flanders, New Jersey, Callee began
therapy treatments three times a week. These consisted of cold laser
therapy, range of motion, electro stimulation and balance exercises.
the end of the year Callee was running, more like a rabbit than a dog,
and chasing the squirrels, rabbits and birds. Therapy is now down to
one day a week with Callee work on gate and balance utilizing the
underwater treadmill at Aqua Dog Rehabilitation.
and I would like to thank Dr. Kristine Conway at Aqua Dog
Rehabilitation for her dedication and expertise in the entire
Daisy is doing pretty well, we're still using the
e-stim unit on her, she goes for a 3 mile walk every morning, plus
3 or 4 other walks throughout the day. We got her a flotation vest,
so she can swim again, and she loves that. We've put her on a "grain
free" dog food and add the Longevity Formula by Springtime to it
and some Apple Cidar Vinegar. Her weight is holding at 65lbs. She
is amazingly strong and healthy and happy. I also wanted to thank
you, so much, for all you did for Daisy and us. Out of everyone
we've dealt with through this whole thing, you we're the most helpful,
most concerned and caring person, we will never forget how wonderful
you were to Daisy and us.
Bacci I cannot say enough good things about Kris and Petra. I had been dealing with on and off lameness issues with my Belgian Malinois, Bacci, for months. I went to a number of veterinarians and orthopedic specialists. I had hips x-rayed and spent tons of money trying to find out what was wrong. A number of people thought Bacci had Pano, but something just didn’t seem right to me. After meeting Petra at a dog training seminar, I jumped at the opportunity to have her look over Bacci. In less than TEN MINUTES she diagnosed the problem!! Bacci had strained his groin muscles on both sides and needed months to recover. Because he is my first working dog and I compete in French Ring, I was so worried that he would not return to 100%. Petra was wonderful in explaining the recovery process to me, and it was so comforting knowing that she completely understood how difficult it was to take time off from training. I followed her directions exactly as she described, and sure enough, Bacci returned back to training stronger than ever! In May 2012, we completed our French Ring I title and are now working towards our French Ring II title. THANK YOU SO MUCH!! Couldn’t have done it without you, Petra!
- Erica Boling
Grady Grady is a high-drive
dog that had always weaved like a heat-seeking missal. I didn’t
know why at the time but he started popping his weave poles in
It wasn’t until I
attended a seminar Petra was giving that it all made sense to me why
this was happening. She said if there was something out of
ordinary your dog was doing and you had ruled out it was not a training
issues, the next thing to consider was they may be injured or
hurt. It was at that moment that it clicked; this was probably
the reason he had begun popping his weave poles. I had her
evaluate him. Unbeknownst to me he had totally trashed his body but was
still trying to give his 110%. I also hadn’t noticed until then
that his back was totally roached. I am not sure how I didn’t
notice but I guess when it happens slowly over time it is easy to miss.
Under Petra’s careful
supervision she designed a rehab program which was continually
progressed from first getting him healthy, then back to being even
stronger and in better shape than before.
Grady is once
again competing and back to the heat-seeking weaving machine he is
known for and more. Even more importantly, thanks to Petra, I now
know how to keep him physically conditioned to enable him to have many
more healthy years ahead.
Kris and Petra, Thanks for
all of the help in getting Snickers back in to shape for the ring... we
couldn't have gotten that UD without both of you!!!! He flew over those
jumps! I have learned so much about dogs, conditioning, and what they
need to compete from both of you. You're greatest!!!
Next assignment... keeping Snickers in shape to herd. I promised him
that if he ever got that UD, I'd let him do what he really wants to
do... so we're on to sheep!
Barb and Snickers
was hard to believe Bailey and I finally achieved MACH 1 back on May
10, 2009. With all of the chronic issues involving his neck and
shoulder, I didn’t know if we would be able to continue agility long
enough to realize MACH 2. Weekly visits with you, follow ups with
the chiropractor and also acupuncture at the vet office kept him going
and on Nov. 21, 2010 we did it…MACH 2 Bailey.
Without all of your expertise and TLC we never could have done it! He
loves PT J Very cute video of him on your website…that’s my
Thanks for all your care and concern. It would have been so
devastating to retire him and now I don’t have to. He’s doing
great in the preferred class at this time.
MACH 2 Bailey
know I will be seeing you soon, but just wanted to let you know that
Hailey earned her ADCH this past weekend in Saratoga... as well as
taking Bronze on her Dog Agility Masters Team.
are one of the many people to credit for her success in the sport of
agility. Thank you for helping to keep her sound and
healthy. I am VERY proud of her performance.
L M Stein, VMD
just wanted to let you know that Lacey has been doing so very well.
Last year she had shoulder surgery and a long rehab process. Lacey was
tied up with this injury, the surgery and rehab process for over 18
to you and with lots of rehab, she regained her strength. Your patience
and instruction were invaluable in her healing process and I can't
thank you and the rehab Vet enough. Lacey started to compete last Feb.
in 4 months, she earned her EX A JWW and Open FAST titles, her Rally EX
title anda Novice Retrieving Dog Title.
to you and Dr. Canape, Lacey has gotten her life back. She is now
running, playing and swimming and enjoying the good life.
came into my life at the age of 9 months, and together we started the
adventures of a lifetime. Training for the HGH (German Herding Utility
Dog) with flocks of 250 or more sheep, I quickly learned what a TRUE
working dog she was. After titling 4 times in the HGH we started
training in Schutzhund at the age of 6. Schutzhund is a sport that
means “Protection Dog” and it involves tracking, obedience and
protection. It tests a dog’s ability to work independently in tracking,
in a controlled manor in obedience, and in all out force in protection
– all while under control of the handler. Berta got her Schuthund 1
& 2 at the age of 7 but in training for the highest level 3, I
noticed that she wasn’t jumping the meter jump (39 inch jump that all
Schutzhund dogs must jump in obedience) as well as she used to. She was
also a little grumpy. At first I thought well she is 8 years old almost
9 – maybe she’s too old now. I took her for a thorough check up – and
found that she had badly strained illiopsoas muscles. Off we went to
Aqua Dog and after 3 months of laser, massage, and water treadmill
therapy with Kris and Petra, Berta and I achieved her Schutzhund 3 at
the age of 9 years – almost unheard of in the Schutzhund world! She has
now received the Performance Award of Merit from the German Shepherd
Dog Club of America (PAM) and is still out showing in AKC going for her
Thank You to Kris & Petra!
Kris & Petra,
Thank you so very much for finding the cause of Bali's
soreness & helping me to reach my goals with her. As I'm sure you
remember I had just about given up on competing with Bali when the
physical issues that she was having were causing her to be too sore
to compete comfortably. I had taken her to a few veterinarians &
to other therapists & while they found areas of concern none of
them were able to detect her underlying problem & fix it. By late
summer of 2007 I was very disappointed, thinking that I would not
be able to get Bali back into either the obedience or agility rings.
At this point she was 3 QQs from earning her UDX & 7 QQs from her
MACH. Aside from earning her titles, I was upset that we would not
be working again as a team & I so love being her teammate.
At about the same time you had decided to start your
wonderful new venture & begin Aquadog. After just one or two sessions
with you the cause of Bali's problems became evident to you & you
were able to help her condition. The exercises that you showed me
how to work on her were fairly simple & were of tremendous benefit.
It wasn't an overnight miracle but, after several weeks I could
start to see that Bali was beginning to stretch better & wasn't
as sore. With your advice we slowly started back into competition,
at first doing just one class on a weekend. After awhile I was able
to resume our normal show schedule. I stretched her before each
time in the ring & iced her afterwards all on your advice.
In May , 2008 Bali qualified in both Open B & Utility
B to earn her final leg toward her UDX at the Memorial Day Cluster
in Freehold, NJ. Needless to say, I was so very happy. In July,
2008 just two months after finishing her UDX, Bali earned her final
QQ for her MACH.
I am so very grateful for the care that you gave to
Bali. You were always available to fit her into your busy schedules
when she was in need of treatment & you were always so concerned
& interested in her well being. You are fantastic & I know that
if you hadn't been there for us I would not have realized my dreams
wanted to say again - THANK YOU!!! so much for pinpointing Molly's
problem, and for turning me into a "proper" agility dog mom who
stretches, warms up, massages, cools down her working dogs!
Molly took first place in late March during her first
trial since last winter!!!!! So - Kudos to you for locking in on
the problem and helping us to fix it...
...So, thanx to you, I've got my champ back running
with me and enjoying every minute of it... ...you worked a miracle.
Take care, Hope you and your dogs are well.
--BiBi, Rich, Molly and Danci
After one year of surgery and 7 months at AquaDog he is running through a foot of snow with no problem.
Thank you for all your work and support to get Blu back on all four paws !
I think he misses you Dr. Chris !
Hi Dr. Kris,
When we found out that Molly ruptured both of her cruciate knee ligaments,
her surgeon advised us that, after surgery, she would walk again, but that
she most likely wouldn’t run again. As you can see by her picture, Molly now
runs like the wind, and, if you can imagine, even better than before.
have no doubt that this was due to the excellent rehab she received from Dr.
Kris and Petra at Aquadog Rehab. Molly began rehab with them within days of
her surgery and was on the water treadmill as soon as her stitches were out.
She has now graduated, but we plan on bringing her back for conditioning
during the fall and winter months.
I can’t imagine what we would have done
after Molly’s surgery without the care and guidance of Dr. Kris and Petra.
Super Senior “Maddie” says “Thank you, Aqua Dog!”
Petra and the staff at Aqua Dog have helped to keep my Welsh Springer,
Maddie, up and running as she hit age ten and onward. They
patiently rehabbed her from an injury so that she could complete her
MACH3 and MXJ just before her tenth birthday! Not only that, at
the same time she earned Highest Scoring dog in obedience at the Welsh
Springer National Specialty, placed in her class in Veterans
Sweepstakes in conformation, and earned her Working Dog title from the
Welsh Springer Club. After her birthday, she went on to earn her
Junior Hunter title and two legs toward her Senior Hunter! We
continue to work with Aqua Dog to keep Maddie in peak condition as she
trains to complete her Senior Hunter and take a try at Master!!!
I strongly believe that the quality of our dogs’ lives is greatly
improved by keeping them active, learning and competing well into their
senior years. Petra and Aqua Dog have made it possible for Maddie
to do that! She’s in her best shape in years! It’s never
too early or too late to start working on your dog’s physical
Linda S. Brennan
CH MACH3 UCDX Briallu Love Her Madly UDX, VER, RAE, JH, MXF, ASCA UD,
Can. CD, WD, VCX, TT, CGC ("Maddie", Welsh Springer Spaniel, age 10)
Our Teddy had a very bad weekend. He couldn't get up by himself and
walking was no better. It took both of us to hold him while he was
outside. We met with the vet yesterday and along with his legs his
prostate was enlarging so we made the decision to let him go. We just
didn't want him to be in pain.
We wanted to thank you and your folks for all you did for him over the
past 10 months. I truly believe he enjoyed coming to Aquadog and I know
he always walked better after one of your sessions. On weeks that we
missed a session he was always a little weaker.
This was not an easy decision, however, we would do it again in a second.
Thanks again for your efforts with Teddy, I know it helped give us more time with him.
Hi Petra and Kristine,
Thank you both for a wonderful seminar on conditioning. It was a great
way of presenting the information. Petra - using your dogs as examples
was a terrific way to show us how to work with what you have and this
in turned helped everybody not to feel bad if their own dogs had any
faults or weakness. Following your lead was brilliant. Thank you
Thank you both for your willingness and kindness with everybody and
their dogs - sharing better ways to keep are dogs healthy and happy is
the way to go. Keep trying to encourage everybody to put their hands on
their dogsand try to feel their body's, that way when something is not
just right you have a base line to compare too.
Please keep up the wonderful work.
Thank you again for your time and effort.
eager to get home after Puppy Power and get
started. Pointing out structure examples from the
attendees helped alot. That made it easier to see how how the
exercises work and why they were important. I also liked the steps
in building the coordination and body control exercises with both
simple props or the more elaborate equipment. Let me know
when the DVD comes out because I've already forgotten a few
details. I told a few people to sign up for the September seminar
even though their dogs are a little older. I'm sure they'll
get plenty out of it.
You asked for feedback about the puppy power seminar. I thought
it was fantastic and I learned so much that I've been applying to my
puppy and my four year old. My peanut ball is on its way.
I would like to see a follow-up session in a year for people who
attended the puppy power seminar where we could review what we've been
working on. You could point out anything we're doing wrong, we
can talk about what we may need to adapt now that our puppy has grown,
I saw you're doing another seminar and I highly recommended it.
--Jennifer Seidel and Brooke
Great seminar today! Fisher and I have lots of stuff that we can work
on! Your presentation was very interesting and informative. Keep them
2012 DECEMBER NATIONAL OBEDIENCE INVITATIONAL
When Pepsi and I received our 2012 NOI invite, I was both thrilled and somewhat nervous. She certainly had the talent and skills she would need, however she had never endured a rigorous competition such as this, which was going to be so physically & mentally challenging; and neither had I.
When I contacted you about our invite, you thoroughly explained all these physical and mental demands that a competition of this magnitude would place on us. To prepare us, you designed a program which was so easy to follow for the months leading up to the competition. Not only did Pepsi get in the best shape EVER, but I got an added bonus by also getting into shape and loosing weight in the process; what more could you ask for!
Much to my surprise, when we arrived in Orlando, the walk from the hotel to the Convention Center & then to the obedience area was over a mile walk each way. We then had to be at our best & required to compete in each of the 8 rings; a total of 20 exercises per day. Over the 2 days we completed 40 exercises in total. Sometimes we had to run from ring to ring without getting a chance to barely catch our breath.
As a result of your conditioning program we were able to walk briskly there, show in each of the 8 rings and walk briskly back to the hotel, never once getting tired. Pepsi was up, happy and full of energy through the entire 2 day event, and so was I. Without your program I doubt either of us could have endured this or done as well.
At the end of each day when Pepsi and I returned to the hotel, she would run around the room with her toy in her mouth snorting and wagging her tail as if to say, “What else can we do today?” She held up both physically and mentally, all due to the wonderful program you designed for us.
Thank you for everything. We were able to go to the event feeling and knowing we were prepared and had all the tools we needed to make it a successful event; and it was. We cannot thank you enough.