Chiropractic can help with a range of problems in movement, behaviour or internal organ health. Such problems can be due to small – even subtle – misalignments between neighbouring bones, which reduces the strength of limbs and skeleton. These misalignments may also cause a nerve to become pinched, resulting in pain or incorrect messages to muscles or organs.
Chiropractors are therapists trained to manipulate these bones back to their correct position, freeing nerves and relieving these problems. They are also trained to know when a medical problem is outside their expertise, and recommend you to see your vet. Chiropractors also treat human patients using very similar techniques.
Most owners notice a change in behaviour, due to movement difficulties or in reaction to pain.
Chiropractic problems may be caused by slips or trips, collisions or other traumatic events. Other causes are more difficult to spot, but may be more serious, like repetitive asymmetrical movements such as circular exercise patterns, foot balance problems, misaligned jockeys, badly fitting tack or pulling on the lead.
Assessment is a combination of watching the animal's movement, listening to the rhythm of footfalls, and then palpating the spine and other bones with fingertips. Chiropractors are trained to incredible sensitivity in palpation to detect minute rotations of bones or misplacements of joints, usually called misalignments.
Once found, they can be repositioned by the chiropractic adjustment – an accurately
Small animals like dogs are usually seen in a clinic, but large animals like horses
are better seen in their horse-
Horses and dogs are the most usual patients, and other mammals like cats, rabbits
In more serious cases when your vet has referred you to the chiropractor, they will have discussed the problems together. The chiropractor will then check with you on the problems, and your animal's medical history. Then they will explain how chiropractic assessment and treatment works.
After assessing your pet, the chiropractor will discuss everything with you. If there is no chiropractic problem, or if they find a serious medical problem that is outside the chiropractic area, they will not treat your animal. If you feel OK about the treatment proposed, they will complete it immediately.
If there is anything you can do to help your pet recover faster or better, your therapist will suggest this to you.
The only therapists legally allowed to treat your animal are vets, veterinary nurses, chiropractors, osteopaths and physiotherapists. All must have suitable training for what they practice.
Vav Simon is a Registered Chiropractor and has been established on the Island for over 15 years. With long experience and a natural gift as well as the full training, she is well known in animal circles. If you want to know more about her, visit her website – or simply ask other owners you meet!