Animal Chiropractic Benefits Dogs, Cats, and Other Pets Too
Published by Triplehchiropractic on November 16, 2015
While animal chiropractic treatments have long been a part of how horse owners keep their animals in optimal condition, many pet owners are now discovering that the benefits of chiropractic care apply as well to cats and dogs as they do to horses. Animal chiropractic has recently become a popular way to help rid the family pet of aches and pains, joint stiffness, arthritis, and a host of other conditions.
A Brief Look at Animal Chiropractic’s History
Although animal chiropractic methods were first used as early as 1895, at the same time “human chiropractic” was first introduced, it was never widely used until the 1980’s. At that time, Options for Animals began to train veterinarians and chiropractors in the art of making chiropractic adjustments on animals. Soon followed the founding of the American Veterinary Chiropractic Association (AVCA) in 1989, which became the main certification body for animal chiropractic practitioners.
Today, over a thousand board-certified vets and chiropractors have passed the rigorous AVCA exam and expanded their practices into a new domain. Enrollment in animal chiropractic schools is exploding nationwide, and more and more pet owners are making chiropractic care a preventative treatment as well as a corrective one.
The Value of Canine Chiropractic
Next to horses and greyhounds, the family dog is the most common candidate for animal chiropractic treatment. The breed, size, temperament, and age of the dog can affect the way that this treatment is done, but canine chiropractic is beneficial to every kind of dog you can name.
When do I take my dog in to see the chiropractor? While it is a good idea to go once or twice a year regardless of your dog’s health and wellness level, symptoms to watch for that may indicate your dog has a spinal misalignment, injury or some other problem a certified chiropractor could address include the following:
- Limping, halting, or an altered gait
- A hunched back
- Muscles spasms on the back
- Difficulty standing up and laying down
- Weakness in the front and back legs
- Hip pain
- Cannot jump
- Dislikes being touched or picked up
- Joint stiffness
- Head tilt
- Chronic ear infection
- Chronic dry eye
- Intermittent incontinence
- Decreased energy level
How can your dog benefit from chiropractic care? Animal chiropractic is a “holistic approach” that can benefit the animal’s whole body and put it into an improved mental and emotional state as well. The removal of pain is the common denominator in most chiropractic treatments, and it is the root source of the pain that is aimed at- and without resort to any drugs.
Canine chiropractic care can have all of the following specific benefits:
- Help muscles to repair so that joints can move freely and spasms can be eliminated. In older dogs, muscles can develop knots and weaken, but chiropractic methods can alleviate much of this discomfort.
- Unblock the dog’s nervous system. When nerves get pinched or blocked, energy levels are dropped and performance is less than optimal. Freeing up your dog’s nerves will promote its overall health, relieve pain, and prevent a worse condition from developing.
- Properly aligning the skeletal system. If a vertebrae or other bone becomes pushed out of position, it cannot function the way it was intended to. Dogs with misalignments will tend to avoid strenuous physical activity and will not live up to their full potential
Will chiropractic therapy hurt my dog? If done by a fully trained, AVCA-certified animal chiropractor, there is little chance of your dog getting injured during treatment. In fact, most dogs actually enjoy the treatment, which is much akin to a massage. Great care and gentleness will be the constant rule that your animal chiropractor adheres to, and you should not worry for the safety of your pet.
The Value of Feline Chiropractic
Much less often are cats given animal chiropractic care than are horses and dogs, yet, the value of such treatments for felines is no less than for other animals. It is also true that cat owners are increasingly becoming aware of these benefits and gradually increasing the number of cats that are brought to a chiropractor.
While larger cats are more often singled out for a visit to the chiropractor, cats of every size, age, and variety can benefit. Cats, like dogs, shows signs of enjoying treatments delivered by an expert chiropractor rather than resenting them or being hurt by them.
Cats are naturally very active creatures, jumping, pouncing, and stretching all the day long. While these movements may be natural and look effortless, they can stress muscles and joints. Additionally, when cats occasionally fall, land in an awkward position, or get accidentally stepped on, their muscles can ache and their spines can get misaligned.
If you notice any of the following symptoms in your cat, a trip to the animal chiropractor could be in order:
- Fatigue and loss of appetite that last for weeks
- Chronic coughing without any obvious cause
- Lameness or an uneven gait
- Aches, pains, and sore spots
- Sudden changes in mood and behavior
- Avoidance of contact with people
Many conditions your cat develops will appear only slowly, and only by observing your cat’s behavior day by day will you notice these changes. A chiropractor can work closely with your cat’s vet and handle the problems that ordinary vet work can’t. A bi-annual checkup at both your veterinarian’s office and your animal chiropractor’s office will also help to identify many problems early and prevent others from every occurring.
Dogs, cats, equines, rabbits, goats, and more can benefit from the services of a professionally trained animal chiropractor. We at Triple H Chiropractic have the training, experience, and love of animals to effectively and compassionately improve your pet’s quality of life through chiropractic methods. We serve all of Houston and the surrounding areas, and we often travel to client’s homes to make our services even more convenient.Sources: