For performance animals, chiropractic is essential. Keeping the animals spine and all joints in biomechanical balance will enhances the animal’s performance as well as minimize injuries.
There are four basic elements of an animals condition that effect performance: pain, fatigue, depressed drive, and poor health.
Performance owners know the value of optimum health in their animal. A healthy, well conditioned animal will have no problem with fatigue or drive.
Pain is the variable that is the most common cause of poor performance.
A minor injury causing pain to a front leg creates an altered movement (lameness) in that leg, and the opposite hip and rear leg. The spine is the conduit through which the alteration is transferred, and involves the many small joints of the spine.
The above example can occur in either direction: front lameness effecting opposite rear hip and leg, and rear lameness effecting the opposite shoulder and front leg. All mediated through the spine.
Your animal chiropractor can alleviate pain by adjusting your animal. This will increase performance by reestablishing the biomechanical balance of all the joints affected from an injury.
To keep a performance animal performing at an optimal level, it is of utmost importance to keep biomechanical balance of all joints. This allows for maximum coordination, balance, speed, and performance. To achieve this, the animal should be adjusted on a regular basis by an animal chiropractor
Dogs and horses have the ability to alter their gait to adapt to pain and injury. This helps them minimize the pain and allows continued movement. This slight alteration (compensation) is sometimes difficult to detect without expertise.
Evaluating an animals gait will detect these small changes in movement. When your animal has regular visits to the Chiropractor, the animal’s movement will be evaluated, and changes will be recognized.
The gait should be analyzed from front, back, left and right sides, and in circles going both clockwise and counter clockwise. The animal should be symmetrical in both position and movement. The movement should be fluid and equally balanced. Gait analysis is best done in a symmetrical gait-walk or trot.
By watching your animal move, your animal Chiropractor will determine which areas need to adjusted.
Vet Advisory: Animal chiropractic is in no way a substitute for regular veterinary care. Your animal Chiropractor works only by referral from your Vet to ensure the best possible care for your animal. For more information on animal Chiropractic contact the Animal Veterinary Chiropractic Association, www.animalchiropractic.org