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cruciateligament

Lottie and her Cruciate Ligament Tear

cruciateligamentMeet Lottie! This little lady had a total cruciate tear in her back leg that was causing her some serious trouble. She wasn’t able to put weight down on her injured leg and she hobbled around as if nothing was wrong. She was quickly diagnosed with a cruciate tear and was told she would need surgery to fix the issue. Having experience with alternate therapies herself, her fur mom decided she’d rather give chiropractic a try to see if that might be the answer.

After just three visits Lottie was already putting her leg down and using it to motor around the house. Though she continued to toe-tap, she was clearly on the mend. As she grew stronger and her muscle tone improved, Lottie was able to use her leg more confidently. By the end of 6 visits Lottie was nearly 100%.

Lottie loves to walk and play, and when surgery was first suggested she was told these things would not be options for several months. Knowing her pup would not be able to sit still for that extended period of time lead her mom to research alternative options. Lottie was able to live a fairly normal life during her healing period, and within two months she was good as new. Yay Lottie!

 

Check out her before and after videos here!

Lottie Before and After Chiropractic

cruciatetear

Holden with Arthritis and a Cruciate Tear

It’s about time we introduced everyone to Holden. Don’t let his handsome face and boyish charm fool you, this senior dog was seriously on the struggle bus earlier this year. We received a phone call in the early spring regarding Holden. He was not weight-bearing on the right hind leg due to a cruciate tear and because of his fourteen years, was not a candidate for cruciate ligament surgery. He also did not travel well because he was horribly arthritic and it was uncomfortable for him to be in the car. Basically, Holden was a mess, and his parents were besides themselves trying to figure out what they could do to help him along his journey.

 

Holden had lost a significant amount of muscle by the time we met him. His strong leg was already weakened and unstable because of how much he had to favor it, and his injured leg had hardly any strength at all. He was only putting the tip of his toes down and that was on every seven or eight steps. Holden didn’t want to sit, lay down, or play. The simplest tasks were becoming hard for him. We explained how chiropractic can often help facilitate healing of the knee and cruciate ligament and stabilize the injury in situations such as Holden’s. Not only would an adjustment regimen help the injured leg improve, but it would also help with his arthritis and the rest of his ailments.

 

Because of the severity of Holden’s injury, we saw him three weeks in a row and then every other week for an additional month. At the end of those seven weeks this pup was fully weight bearing, walking, running, and sitting without trouble. His lameness was no longer present and his strength had returned. This fourteen year old was acting more like a six year old and you’d never have known that a few months earlier it seemed like he may be on his last leg. Between chiropractic and good parenting, Holden has been able to live a much better quality of life and he’s made 2017 a great year. Hoping 2018 turns out even better as he continues to maintain his strength and excitement!

Arthritis in dogs

Geriatric Dogs and Animal Chiropractic

I find myself writing this blog today because our practice has seen an uptick in geriatric dogs recently.  What is their biggest complaint?  Typically, the issue is rear end shaking and an inability to support their weight.  The good news is that we are getting great results with this population.  In fact, our patients frequently claim to see significant improvement within 24 hours.  Why is this and what are some other strategies we can use to help them through their twilight years?  Read on to find out.

What is a geriatric dog?Geriatric Dogs

According to the American Veterinary Medical Association, a geriatric dog is any small breed 7 years and older or any large breed 6 years and older.  There are many issues that affect this population, but one big one is a decrease in mobility.  The body naturally breaks down over time.  However, if the joints of the spine or limbs are in poor alignment they will wear down faster.  Think of it like a car forced out of alignment.  The tires and other parts will wear unevenly and quickly.  A similar thing happens in the body.

Why do geriatric dogs benefit from animal chiropractic care?

Geriatric pets benefit from animal chiropractic because chiropractic restores normal function and alignment to a joint.  When a joint is out of alignment, it places uneven stress along it.  In addition, it initiates an inflammatory response.  Inflammation is known for contributing to joint degeneration.  Therefore, animal chiropractic is an important intervention because it keeps the joints of the body in normal alignment which helps prevent premature wear and inflammation.

What else can we do to help geriatric dogs?

In addition to animal chiropractic care, there are a number of things we can do to help our pets.  These include:

  • Controlling your pets weight – Overweight pets are subject to extra forces on their joints.
  • Keep exercising – You may need to modify their routine, but movement is important for joint health.
  • Supplementation – There are quite a few joint supplements on the market.  The goal is to give a high quality supplement that includes glucosamine and chondroitin.

These tips combined with chiropractic care will benefit your pet’s quality of life.

Unfortunately, arthritis and decreased mobility area conditions that will affect many geriatric pets.  However, there are ways to slow the progression.  This includes adding animal chiropractic care, weight control, exercise, and supplementation.  With these additions your pet will enjoy an improved quality of life during their twilight years.

 

Want to learn more?  Visit us here.  Have any questions?  Visit our contact page.

Casey and her floating kneecap

This little lovebug is Casey. Casey is a rockstar on top of being beautiful. She has a bad case of luxating patella AKA floating kneecaps in her back legs and it was really crimping her style. For instance, when Casey wanted to run and chase other dogs she had to do so using three legs, since that pesky leg got in the way! Luckily Casey’s mom was referred to us to see if we could help her darling little lady.

 

When Casey first started seeing us her floating kneecap was popping in and out of socket with nearly every step. It was constant and she had lost a great deal of muscle tone because she didn’t want to use this leg. We knew this wouldn’t be a quick fix, but her mom was willing to give us a shot because she didn’t want to do surgery.

 

Within three weeks our little Casey was already putting weight on that back leg. Within another three weeks Casey was using her leg more than she wasn’t, and by the end of two months this little girl was almost always using her back leg. Her kneecap would pop out but she was able to correct it, and this was only happening once every few weeks as opposed to daily. Casey hardly ever limps anymore and she’s faster and more energetic than ever. What may have been bleak chances turned into the best decision that could’ve been made for this love monkey. We are so proud of her progress!

Household Poisons

Soreness Post-Adjustment, Normal or Not?

sorenessWill My Dog Be Sore After an Adjustment?

 

Do dogs get sore after an adjustment? This is a question we get frequently in our practice, and it is a good one. After all, many people associate chiropractic with violent twisting and loud pops. This aggressive adjustment style may be the norm when it comes to humans, but it is not for animals. In fact, in animals popping sounds are extremely rare and the adjustment is so gentle you may miss it if you blink. However, an animal may experience a few down days after an adjustment. Why is this?

Can an adjustment lead to soreness?

While adjustments don’t typically cause pain, they can lead to soreness in a pet. This is similar in nature to what you experience the first few times you visit a gym. If you haven’t worked out in four years then bench press and squat for 45 minutes, you are going to be sore for a number of days afterwards. In fact, you may find yourself struggling to sit in your chair at work or lift your arms to put the dishes away at home. Is this a sign of a problem though? It typically is not. Rather, it is a sign of healing. Unfortunately, it takes your body time to repair the work you did in the gym and you will be sore in the meantime.

How long might soreness last?

In many animals, they won’t experience any soreness whatsoever. In other pets, they may look worse for a day or two immediately after an adjustment. Every animal behaves differently. However, our experience has shown that typically it does not last beyond 2-3 days. What are the results after this period of discomfort? We are often told that pets look better than they have in years once the body has had time to heal. This is because animal chiropractic is a natural treatment that depends on the body’s ability to heal itself. The faster the pet’s body can recover, the quicker they will improve.

Are there any remedies that may help?

To begin with, you can always ice the tender area on your pet. It is no different than the protocol you might use for your knee or ankle. Icing for 10-20 minutes (if your pet allows for it) can definitely help. In addition, you can utilize a homeopathic called arnica to help with any painful spots. Arnica can be found in an ointment form that can be spread directly onto the skin, or in supplement form that can be taken internally. It helps bruising, swelling, arthritis, and provides pain relief while your pet is on the mend.

In the end, pet owners want what is best for their pet. A couple days of discomfort after an adjustment can be worrisome. However, this is just part of the body’s natural healing process – much like recovering from a workout in the gym. Additionally, it typically doesn’t last long and is followed by a very happy pet!

Scooter and his Constant Constipation!

Scooter is not only handsome but also sassy. You may not notice him at first glance but he’s the dark shadow snuggled up to his brother Rocket. This 22-year-old boy has been around the majority of our lifetime and he doesn’t look a day over 18! It’s hard to believe he could legally drink in human years…and makes us happy to see what good nutrition and lots of love can do for our pets.

 

Our buddy Scooter was dealing with a serious problem…one that needed to resolve or he could be in serious trouble. Scooter couldn’t go potty. He would strain and strain and yet nothing would come of it. He was beginning to show signs of pain from being constipated, and no matter how many supplements he was given, this boy just couldn’t get the job done on a regular basis. Since his nutrition and everything else checked out, we figured trying chiropractic couldn’t hurt as well.

 

Well we couldn’t be happier that we did. Within a couple of hours of Scooter’s first adjustment he was able to have a solid poop without straining. This pattern has continued since the first adjustment, and he’s been able to hold them for much longer than before. Scooter gets adjusted once each month and that seems to be about as long as he can go before his sacral nerves start slowing down in their response time. With each adjustment, we get the happiest reports of good poops for weeks to come. So happy we can help make this seniors day a little easier!

Sweet Cyda and her Constipation

Meet Cyda- this sweet Siamese cat is one we can’t help but adore. She’s dealt with a great deal of issues recently but one of them is no longer a problem…her constipation! Cyda has dealt with limping in both her back and front end, and several months ago it was due to her being “backed up”. This is a more common problem than most of us realize, and getting her to go made all the difference!

 

Cyda came to us because she was limping in both her back and front end. Last time this occurred it was because she hadn’t been able to poop. Her nerves controlling her ability to contract her bowels weren’t working properly and in turn this also affected the nerves controlling her back legs. Within an hour of her first adjustment Cyda was able to have a proper movement without straining.

 

Since then, we’ve know moved focus to the greater issue at hand which is really her front end, however that is a tale for another time. Right now, we want to say how happy we are that this baby girl hasn’t had any more bathroom issues. The straining is gone and she goes regularly without trouble! Her hind end is strong and she shows no weakness. This just goes to show how all the nerves work together, and when something is impacted (whether that be literally or figuratively) everything can be altered!

To go or not to go: Constipation in Pets

Constipation and Chiropractic – What’s the Connection?

 

constipated                Have you ever noticed your pet straining to do their business, and yet nothing comes out? Constipation isn’t a condition that only affects humans, unfortunately. It can hinder our fur family as well. The good news? Chiropractic care helps many animals afflicted with this condition – especially those that don’t have success with traditional treatments. Why is this you ask? First, we must understand the causes of constipation. Then, we can discuss what animal chiropractic is and how it can help our pets.

What are the causes of constipation?

                  There are numerous causes of constipation. These include:

  • Dehydration
  • Swallowing a foreign object like a rock, etc.
  • Intestinal obstruction
  • Infected anal glands
  • Stress
  • Neuromuscular disorders involving injury to the nerves that supply the muscles of the colon

The last reason listed is of particular interest to animal chiropractors. To understand why, we must first understand what animal chiropractic care is.

What is animal chiropractic?

Animal chiropractors are vets or chiropractors who pursue post-graduate education in animal care and are board certified. They are trained to evaluate the spine and look for biomechanical abnormalities, often referred to as structural shifts. When they find these, they use very gentle corrections to return them to their normal position. Why is this a big deal? Structural shifts cause an inflammatory response that can affect the spinal cord and nerves throughout the spine.

How can animal chiropractic help our constipated friends?

Unfortunately, these spinal abnormalities can disturb the nerves that run to and from the intestine. This can impair the message between the control centers that initiate defecation and the muscles responsible for pushing. It’s like trying to watch satellite TV on a day when there’s a massive thunderstorm. The image is fuzzy because the message from the satellite cannot get through the obstruction of the storm.

The main nerves responsible for using the restroom come from the rear end area around the hips.   This area is also under a lot of stress as a result of the crazy things our pets do. Even something as simple as jumping onto a couch may affect the spine in the rear end. If this occurs, it can cause inflammation of the nerves running to the colon. Animal chiropractors are trained to detect these minor misalignments and gently correct them. This will result in a normal alignment that reduces the inflammation in the area affecting all the nerves. If there is a neurological component to your pet’s constipation, chiropractic can help them out!

To sum everything up, constipation is a condition that affects all species. There are many different reasons it may occur. However, subtle problems with the nerves as a result of biomechanical issues in the spine are hard to detect and may result in constipation. This is where animal chiropractors can help, and make your pet regular again!

Laser Therapy and Chiropractic Care: A Perfect Match!

Chiropractic and Laser – A Perfect Match for Animals?

 

Structure determines function. This statement is the foundation upon which the body and chiropractic works. Optimum structure is important for your spine – just as it is for your house. After all, if the foundation of your house sinks in by a few inches I imagine you will see problems in your walls, floors, roof, and more. Animal chiropractors are like engineers for the spine that help restore the foundation. However, how do we repair the damage done secondary to structural shifts of your pet’s spine? Low laser therapy may be the solution.

What is low laser therapy?

 

lasertherapy

Laser therapy utilizes the power of lasers to therapeutically treat ailments. Essentially, the concentrated energy penetrates the body and stimulates mitochondria in the cells of muscles, ligaments, organs and more. As you may recall from biology 101, the mitochondria produce energy for the body in the form of ATP. This stimulation helps promote cellular regeneration and healing by providing the cells with more energy to work.

What can laser help?

                  Laser therapy can help many problems in the body. After all, injured areas can always use more energy for healing. However, it is better known for treating the following conditions in animals:

  • Muscle, ligament, and tendon injuries
  • Post-surgical soft tissue trauma
  • Back pain
  • Ear infections
  • Arthritis
  • Degenerative disc disease

Many of these issues overlap with conditions that may benefit from chiropractic. Is this a coincidence?

Why does laser pair well with chiropractic?

                  Animal chiropractic focuses on normalizing structure in the body. The results of abnormal structure include inflammation, tendon and ligament injuries, arthritis, degenerative disease, and more. As we described previously, structural misalignments in the spine are like shifts in the foundation of your house. It can cause numerous problems throughout the body.

Once we fix the foundation, we still need to address the secondary conditions that are a result of the structural defects. This is where laser therapy is key. It will help flush out inflammation, repair soft tissue damage, help stimulate cells to heal themselves, and assist in treating more problems secondary to structural shifts of the spine. In a nutshell, chiropractic helps stabilize the underlying structure while laser enhances the repair of secondary problems.

As you now know, structure is important for function. To address the structural aspect, chiropractic is a great treatment. However, we still need to deal with all the issues secondary to problems with the abnormal alignment of the spine. That is where laser is the key to a well-rounded plan of care.

Moya and her Cruciate Ligament Tear

cruciate ligament tearOh miss Moya, could you be any cuter? Moya came to see us with a torn cruciate ligament. She was not wanting to weight bear hardly at all, though she didn’t seem like she was in any pain. The thought of surgery did not appeal to her parents as she was still quite young and active, and keeping Moya on crate rest for an extended period of time was likely not going to work. Luckily Moya’s uncle told them to come pay us a visit!

 

With any knee injury, there’s bound to be a few weeks where the healing is slow and it doesn’t look like much is changing. There will be good days and bad days, but as time goes on and the healing progresses, the good days will start to far outweigh the bad. In fact the bad days often only show up after a stellar day when they push themselves a little too hard!

 

Moya was no different. Within her first few adjustments she was utilizing that back leg more and more. Her inflammation went down and she wasn’t taking any medication. She was playing and walking, and sooner than not her lameness was hardly present at all. Her knee healed up without ever needing surgery and she was able to be active throughout her recovery. For dogs such as Moya this is key! See her before and after below!

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