Chiropractic care as a holistic approach can be used to treat health and performance problems in animals. Chiropractic is the manipulation or adjustment of joints and their related structures.
The purpose of chiropractic adjustments is to mobilize stiff or restricted joints. When muscle or ligament on one side of a spinal joint is tight the joint is pulled out of proper alignment. The joint and associated muscles and nerves become irritated and swollen leading to pain, stiffness and dysfunction of the nervous system. An adjustment is a very specific, quick, low force thrust of the hand which is directed in a specific direction on a specific joint. The goal is to return restricted joints to proper mobility.
Your appointment begins with Dr Weidenkopf taking a complete history of your horse, dog or cat. Then a chiropractic examination is performed. This includes posture and gait analysis and palpation of the joints and muscles both, statically and in motion. Most animal chiropractors examine one region at a time and make the adjustments as they go using proper position and applying treatment to one joint at a time.
Several factors determine the number and frequency of treatments to correct a problem. In general, long-standing or chronic problems will require more treatments than new or acute problems. If permanent damage has occurred, a return to full range of motion may not be possible and multiple adjustments may be required to achieve maximum available flexibility. Younger animals generally need fewer treatments than seniors. Most issues require 2-5 treatments with about 2 to 4 weeks between each treatment.
For all species, there are common stressful or traumatic situations that can strain the structures supporting joints and thus cause abnormal or restricted movement in the spine.