Veterinary Chiropractic

Veterinary Chiropractic is an approach to animal health that is taken by a number of holistic and integrative veterinarians. It is based on the belief that pivotal to an animals health is correct functioning of the animal's nervous system. Veterinary chiropractic practitioners principally focus on the function of the spine and spinal nerves. Examination of the animal involves a number of tests, the most common of these being manual palpation of the mobility of the individual segments of the spine and the tension or weakness of the local spinal muscles. Treatment is usually via relatively gentle mechanical impulses which act to return the spinal mobility and local spinal muscles to normal function. Usually this is done manually but sometimes a special mechanical device such as an "activator"may be used. The impulse is referred to as a high velocity, controlled direction and depth, short lever adjustment.

Veterinary chiropractic practitioners commonly incorporate a number of massage and tissue release techniques, as well as acupuncture, homeopathic medications, herbs, exercise regimes and stretching in their "reprogramming" of the nervous system. For more information on chiropractic for animals follow the link to the Australian Veterinary Chiropractic Association.

The skeptics association believe this therapy to be placebo only, and there is continuing debate especially by those who have not experienced its benefits. Its growing use, especially in performance animals and increasing clinical data, suggests it has great merit.


Equine Chiropractic: General Principles and Clinical Applications, Kevin K Heussler DVM DC PhD, 2000 Vol 46 AAEP proceedings, In depth Complimentary and Integrative Therapies

The Role of Chiropactic Therapy in Small Animal Medicine, Post Graduate Foundation in Veterinary Science of the University of Sydney Perspective 55 Mailing 241 Dr Toni Lynch