SSAW Dog Exam

Evaluating and treating your Service, Sporting, Athlete and Working (SSAW) Dog!

SSAW Dogs are at the heart of the VSC K9 ReC Center.
We look forward to facilitating the special bond and career the two of you have!

The VSC K9 ReC Center Exam Experience

Rehabilitative medicine can be beneficial as the first line of defense to evaluate and develop an integrative plan for conditioning or treating and recovering your SSAW Dog from stress, strain, or injury (physical or mental). VSC K9 ReC Center does not require a referral from your regular veterinarian. You can make an appointment directly with us at any time.

The K9 Team will start with a general physical exam. Remember medical illnesses can also contribute to pain, lameness, and even subtle changes in performance. Thus, it is important to assess general health. This will be done in collaboration with your regular vet (rDVM), including obtaining routine annual screening tests such as bloodwork [e.g., complete blood count (CBC), chemistry panel], heartworm & tick-borne test (“4DX,” e.g., Lyme, Erhlichia, Anaplasma), urinalysis (UA) and possibly X-Rays if needed.

Following a general physical exam, VSC K9 ReC Center will dive into a more extensive Rehabilitation exam based on your dog’s job, sport, and performance goals. Our K9 ReC Center specialized team can evaluate gait, muscles, joints, myofascia, nervous system, myokinetics, and more, using advanced training/knowledge, experience as well as state-of-the-art diagnostic strategies when necessary, including but not limited to:

  • Slow-motion video capture
  • Advanced gait analysis
  • Advanced imaging
    • CT
    • MRI
    • diagnostic ultrasound
    • thermal imaging
  • Affective, Behavioral and Cognitive (ABC) contributions to performance

After reviewing the information you provide us about your SSAW Dog’s background, current performance, and goals, their routine screening data from their rDVM, along with our detailed evaluation, we’ll discuss our findings and together we’ll devise a plan appropriate for you and your SSAW Dog. This may involve following up with your rDVM for additional tests if needed. If there are deeper, underlying conditions, other VSC specialists are available to dive into any concerning findings as well.

If you would like an evaluation to discover if your SSAW Dog is comfortably performing at his or her peak, please schedule an evaluation with our K9 ReC Center.



Starting Monday, April 8th through the end of September, the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) will begin their road resurfacing project along Waukegan Road from Lake Cook Road to Half Day Road (IL 22). Please allow additional travel time to our hospital during the construction. Learn More: Waukegan Road Resurfacing Project