Episode 45: How working at a country practice unlocked one veterinarian's passion for canine rehabilitation

March 23, 2021
Kelsey Gustafson, Associate Editor

On this episode of The Vet Blast Podcast, Dr Christman is joined by canine rehabilitation expert Dr Brunke, as they discuss the initial spark that led him to this niche in veterinary medicine, plus why patient advocacy is so important.

According to New York City native Matt Brunke, DVM, DACVSMR, CCRP, CVPP, CVA, his time at a mixed animal practice in upstate New York set the foundation for his career as a canine rehabilitation specialist.

“Being at a country practice gave me the opportunity to expand upon my surgical techniques because my mentors were also my bosses. I was doing surgical procedures like extracapsular repairs, MPLs, FHOs, those types of things,” he tells Adam Christman, DVM, MBA, in this episode of The Vet Blast Podcast.

Although his patients were healing, Brunke noticed that they continued to walk oddly and were struggling to run and play with their owners. That’s when he decided to explore the physical therapy options available in veterinary medicine.

In his quest to learn more, Brunke attended a certified canine rehabilitation practitioner (CCRP) course at the University of Tennessee, thus sparking his passion for sports medicine and rehabilitation.

Brunke has helped treat a variety of cases ranging from canine arthritis, geriatric, oncology, hip dysplasia to working canine injuries. He’s even aided dogs in returning to working at the White House.

Brunke attributes much of his success to learning how to advocate for his patients. Now more than ever, he says clients are putting a demand on veterinary professionals to help their pets live longer and happier lives and the best way to do that is to get better at patient advocacy, he says.

Listen below for more on Brunke’s journey to rehabilitation and his thoughts on pet advocacy.