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  • Writer's pictureDr. Hailey Arnold

Top Reasons to Consider a Dog Chiropractor for Your Pet's Health

Beagle gets zoomies after chiropractic

As the focus on comprehensive health and wellness extends beyond humans to our four-legged companions, the role of a dog chiropractor emerges as an increasingly popular and vital service. This specialized approach to animal health care, rooted in the principles of chiropractic adjustments, offers a non-invasive and holistic remedy for various ailments that afflict canines. With an emphasis on the neuromusculoskeletal system, dog chiropractors deploy techniques to enhance mobility, alleviate pain, and improve overall quality of life for pets.

The importance of finding a qualified animal chiropractor cannot be underestimated, as it ensures that your pet receives the best possible care tailored to their specific needs.

This article delves into the advantages of seeking a dog or animal chiropractor, highlighting the benefits of animal chiropractic care, common conditions treated through this method, and what pet owners can expect during a chiropractic session.

As the demand for complementary therapies for animals continues to grow, understanding how chiropractic care can contribute to your pet’s health and happiness is more important than ever. This guide aims to equip pet owners with the knowledge needed to make informed decisions about integrating chiropractic solutions into their pets' wellness routines.

Benefits of Animal Chiropractic

Pain Relief

Chiropractic adjustments provide significant pain relief for dogs suffering from musculoskeletal issues such as joint stiffness and spinal misalignments, enhancing their comfort and quality of life .

Improved Mobility

Regular chiropractic care improves a dog's mobility and range of motion, allowing them to move more freely and enjoy activities without discomfort. This is particularly beneficial for senior dogs and those recovering from injuries.

Holistic Health Benefits

Animal chiropractic care supports overall health by improving neuromusculoskeletal health, which is crucial for maintaining optimal bodily functions. It offers a non-invasive approach that complements traditional veterinary care, promoting faster healing and preventing future ailments.

Common Conditions Treated with Animal Chiropractic

Spinal Misalignments

Spinal misalignments in dogs can lead to abnormal nerve function, which manifests as decreased athletic performance, behavioral changes, and gait issues. These misalignments often result from repetitive movements or accidents.

Joint Issues

Chiropractic care addresses joint restrictions that cause biomechanical and neurological alterations, commonly referred to as subluxations. This care is crucial for resolving inflammation, improving joint range of motion, and alleviating pain, which enhances overall joint function and health.

Post-Injury Recovery

After injuries, chiropractic adjustments are vital for recovery, focusing on realigning the spine and affected joints to reduce pain and restore mobility. Regular chiropractic sessions can slow degenerative changes and maintain spinal health, crucial for dogs with chronic conditions like osteoarthritis.

What to Expect During an Animal Chiropractic Session

Initial Consultation

The initial consultation involves gathering a detailed case history, primarily consisting of owner observations and the pet's medical background, including prior diagnostics and treatment. A comprehensive chiropractic evaluation follows, assessing posture, gait, and joint mobility through static and motion palpation.

Chiropractic Evaluation

Diagnostic procedures integrate findings from the initial consultation with a thorough physical examination. This includes checking the range of motion, vertebral alignment, and potential areas of discomfort, which helps in pinpointing specific areas requiring adjustment.

Typical Treatment Techniques

Treatment typically involves high-force, low-amplitude thrusts to correct joint motion, aiming to restore normal movement and alleviate pain. Adjustments are tailored to the animal's anatomy and may include techniques like the Activator for precise adjustments.

Follow-up and Aftercare

Follow-up visits are crucial for maintaining the benefits of chiropractic adjustments. The frequency of these visits can vary based on the initial response and the specific needs of your pet. Your dog will need to be re-evaluated within a week of their first adjustment if possible. Post-visit, adhere to any recommendations given by the chiropractor, such as restricted activity or specific exercises, to aid in your pet’s recovery and well-being.


1. How can I tell if my dog might benefit from chiropractic care? Your dog may need chiropractic care if you notice any of the following signs: pain or unusual facial expressions, changes in behavior, energy levels, or sleep patterns. Additionally, look for reluctance to be touched or picked up, alterations in how they stand or shift weight, inability to bear weight, changes in sitting posture, gait alterations such as limping or a shortened stride, or a decreased willingness to walk as far as usual. Show and agility dogs often use chiropractic care to enhance performance, too.

2. Are chiropractic treatments beneficial for dogs? Yes, chiropractic care can be beneficial for dogs, especially those recovering from injuries or surgeries. It can also help improve gait and range of motion in senior dogs and address issues related to jaw problems or difficulties with chewing.

3. What is the purpose of chiropractic care for animals? Animal chiropractic care involves a certified professional who specializes in the musculoskeletal and neurological systems of animals. The primary goal is to perform adjustments on the joints and vertebrae to alleviate pain and restore normal functioning in the animal.

4. What should I expect after my dog receives a chiropractic adjustment? After a chiropractic adjustment, it is common for pets to either feel very relaxed and sleepy for the rest of the day or experience bursts of energy due to feeling better (zoomies). It's also normal for some pets to feel sore for a couple of days, especially after their first adjustment session.

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