The methodology of kinetics/motion measurement with dogs

The movement patterns of dogs can vary between breeds, furthermore differ depending on age and health. This is why questions such as "what is normal?", or "what is a conspicuous and rather morbid motion pattern?" are somehow astonishing.
If the pathological changes are of patho-anatomical nature (pathological changes in the skeleton, for example osteoarthritis or hip dysplasia), these can be detected by image based diagnostic methods such as x-ray, CT or MRI! If this is not the case, no diagnostic procedures have been available to date to objectively describe and measure the changes in the movement pattern. Since the "motion" represents a function, it cannot be represented through image based diagnostic methods, only through functional diagnostics!

Now, however, there is a solution available which closes this gap.

Thanks to the new kinetic measurement method developed by us, it is finally possible to measure the movement pattern objectively in order to reveal any alterations. Above all, any improvements during treatment can be measured and assessed. This method can be very useful if radiological examinations give no explanation for an altered movement pattern! After the kinetic measurement, a more accurate diagnosis can be made and, if necessary, further diagnostic or therapeutic measures can be initiated! This is particularly useful in acute protrusions of the intervertebral disk, for dogs during time of growth, for prophylaxis of hip joint dysplasia and elbow disease as well as for working and sport dogs in rehabilitation after injury or surgery.




Gait analysis for humans

As already mentioned, there are many uses for gait analysis during medical teatment. Its purpose is to parametrically detect the motion cycle, more precisely the walk cycle. A person's walk cycle consists of three different phases:

  1. Support from both legs (double support)
  2. Observed leg supports solely (single support)
  3. Observed leg swings (swing phase)


Motion analysis provides the possibility to plan targeted and individual therapeutic measures for the treatment of orthopaedic diseases  Especially in the case of conservative therapies, after measurements are taken, adjustments in the footwear or orthoses can be made.

In the diagram below you see the different phases in the walk cycle of a human!



Gangzyklus eines Menschen

Illustration 2: Walk cycle of a human (Richards, 2008)



In order to characterise a movement pattern, parameters must be collected. Apart from spatial parameters such as step length and stride length, which are shown in Illustration 3, temporal parameters can also be defined. Examples thereof include: Step and speed, as well as step and stride frequency.



Gangparameter eines Menschen

Illustration 3: A person's gait parameters (Richards, 2008)



The detection of such gait parameters can be carried out by various methods, each having its advantages and disadvantages. In the following, three basic methods for determining the walk are briefly explained.



Force plate

Force plates are the foundation of gait analysis. They are widely used and very popular.

Simple versions consist of a plate, which reacts to the force or pressure of tread by generating electrical voltage through built-in measuring strips or piezocrystals (Richards, 2008). The principle of the application is shown in Illustration 4.



Aneinandergereihte Kraftmessplatten in Kombination mit einer Video Analyse

Illustration 4: Linked force measuring plates in combination with a video analysis (Kistler, 2015)



Illustration 5 shows a further developed type of force measuring plate. A treadmill with integrated force measurement makes it possible to measure for an extended period of time, respectively a longer distance.



Prinzip eines Kraftmesslaufbandes

Illustration 5: Principle of a force measuring tape (PurinaVets)



The disadvantages of the measuring plate are that on one hand only the force or the pressure (kinetic) can be measured and, on the other hand, dogs have to be trained first in order to walk properly on the plate.



Video analysis

Motion detection with video is based on the recognition of markers, which are attached to the patient. Since only kinematics can be recorded with this method, it is often combined with the use of force measuring plates (see Figure 4). This way, the movements of the joints, the limbs, as well as the force of the tread are detected. A problem which still exists is the flexibility of the application and the duration of the possible recording. Furthermore, the acquisition of cameras and measuring plates is a costly matter and the accuracy depends on the utensils used (Richards, 2008).



Acceleration measurement

Gait analysis by means of acceleration sensors offers certain advantages compared to the above-mentioned methods, in particular in veterinary medicine.

The principle of this method is that accelerometers are attached to the patient's body. These transmit, preferably wirelessly, the measured signal to a computer.

The quality of the measured signal depends on the position of the sensor attached to the body, as well as on the sampling frequency of the microprocessor. Accuracy is increased, if in addition to linear accelerometers, gyroscopes (angular accelerometers) and GPS (magnetometers) are used.


Advantages are listed below:

  • The components are relatively inexpensive in contrast to power plates.
  • The dog does not have to get used to the system and can move freely.
  • The duration of the recording does depend on the transmission range, but is unlimited while using a portable computer (tablet, smartphone etc.).
  • Both kinetic and kinematic factors can be derived from the signals.


Thanks to our unique system, we are able to use and apply these advantages to dogs! Enabling immediate measuring of the movement pattern, completely without a training phase, to perform a quick analysis and interpretation. This is followed by orthopaedic manual therapy. Depending on the degree of severity and illness, this can be followed by a surgical procedure with subsequent rehabilitation via physiotherapy (or other procedures depending on the indication of the case)!



Orthovet Information


Dr. med. vet.

Patrick Blättler Monnier

Fasanenstrasse 13

4402 Frenkendorf

Tel. 061 903 11 11

Fax 061 903 11 13


Open hours Vet practice

Office hours

Mon 8.00-13.00 and 14.00-17.00

Tue 8.00-13.00 and 15.00-19.00

Wed 8.00-13.00 (Afternoon Research)

Thu 8.00-13.00 and 14.00-17.00

Fri 8.00-15.00 (continuous)


Phone hours

Mon 8:00 - 9:30

Tue 8:00 - 9:30

Thu 8:00 - 9:30


Holidays Orthovet 2021/22

Summer holiday 21.06 - 18.07.2021

Autumn holiday 18.10 - 29.10.2021

Christmas holiday 23.12 - 07.01.2022


Payment and tariff

Your pet is of central importance to us. To avoid time consuming administration, please note that bills are payable at the time of your visit.

Payment may be made in cash, by Maestro (debit card), Postcard or credit card.



We comply with the tariff recommendations of the Swiss Society of Veterinarians (GST). Our costs are based on the time that we need for your dog / cat, as well as on the nature and extent of examination and treatments that we have to perform. We are happy to discuss the costs with you before the examination so that you can decide which tests and treatments you want.