What is Chiropractic:

Chiropractic is a drug-free approach to pet health care. It deals with the nervous system housed inside the spinal column and the goal is to keep the nervous system healthy for the benefit of all body systems.

Chiropractic adjustments for animals involves the adjustment of a subluxation of the spinal column, extremity joints and skull bone junctions called the cranial sutures. A subluxation is a misalignment of a vertebrae or joint from its normal position, causing the joint to not function or move properly. This misalignment can alter the nerve function and signals between the body and the brain. A chiropractic adjustment is defined as a short lever, high velocity controlled thrust by hand or instrument that is directed at the specific joint articulations to correct the vertebral subluxation.

What to expect:

An animal chiropractic evaluation includes obtaining a case history consisting of information from the owner, information from the prior veterinary radiographs or laboratory analysis, information involving previous diagnoses and therapies. A physical exam will be conducted before the adjustment, as well as observation in gate, mental state and posture, motion and static palpation, neurological and orthopedic observations and examinations.

Should I consider Animal Chiropractic for my animal?

Yes if you notice these symptoms in your animal:

  • Neck, back, leg and tail pain
  • Muscle spasms or nerve problems
  • Disc problems, joint problems, limping
  • Injuries from slips, falls, accidents
  • Jaw/ TMJ problems, difficulty eating/chewing
  • Event or sport injuries
  • Post surgical care
  • Bowel, bladder or internal disorders
  • Maintenance of joint and spinal health
  • Changes in appetite or eating
  • Trouble getting up and down
  • Seizures/ neurological problems
  • Behavioral or mood changes
  • Diagnosed arthritis
  • Changes in gate
  • Changes in posture
  • Weakness in hind limbs
  • Trouble getting up or down from sitting or laying
  • Trouble jumping up or down
  • Shaking or body tremors

Frequently Asked Questions about Animal Chiropractic

Is adjusting animals just like adjusting people?

Adjusting animals is similar to adjusting people in the sense that we detect and adjust subluxations. Animals are treated while sitting on the floor or standing versus being on a table. You will not hear a pop or a crack associated with the adjustment.

What type of animals can be adjusted?

All animals can be adjusted!!! At Healing Hands Family Chiropractic, we adjust large and small animals. We will treat dogs, cats, guinea pigs, rabbits or any other small animal in the office. We have a special room designated just for this. Large animals that reside in barns are adjusted at their homes. These include horses, cows/steers, sheep, pigs, goats, and chickens!

How long are adjustments and how many should I expect?

Each adjustment takes about 20 minutes. At Healing Hands Family Chiropractic we recommend the rule of 3. If after 3 visits, (at 1 week interval) we do not see any changes in the initial complaint, more times than not, chiropractic is not the most beneficial treatment choice. After the third visit the doctors have a better idea of the next best steps for you and your companion to make and any other follow up appointments are up to the owner. Follow up appointments to establish wellness care are recommended based on the individual animal and goals of treatment.

Do you take x-rays, prescribe drugs or recommend supplements?

According to Colorado State Law, no licensed animal chiropractor can take x-rays, prescribe medications or supplements. They can not administer acupuncture or any other type of physiotherapy. We are only able to detect and address musculoskeletal conditions. If you would like any of the above mentioned therapies, please contact your veterinarian.

Can adjustments hurt my animal?

We can not guarantee that your animal will leave an adjustment completely pain free, however the adjustment itself is gentle and should not cause additional pain or discomfort to your animal. However, some areas that need to be adjusted can be tender and inflamed and working on this area may cause visible discomfort to your animal. The doctors are aware of this and will do their best to minimize this discomfort. Occasionally there can be some stiffness or soreness in the animal after the adjustment for a short period of time. This can also be seen with human patients following an adjustment, so please be aware this can be normal.

Do I need a referral from my veterinarian?

No! Colorado law states that as long as the Animal Chiropractor has completed an accredited course approved by the state and is licensed through the state, you do not need a referral from your veterinarian. However, it is always a good idea to let your veterinarian know of any other treatments you are seeking for your animal. This will help facilitate communication and encourage a team approach to the care of your animal.