Working with canines

Dogs with any chiropractic based problems can present with a variety of symptoms, most commonly presenting with pain. The dog will attempt to compensate for the pain by changing its posture and gait (style of walking) and this can show as other secondary problems. There are numerous common stressful or traumatic situations that can affect our dogs such as boisterous play, car accidents, age, and handling methods. These can cause abnormal or restricted movements to occur in the spine. This change in proper movement in the spine, refered to as ‘subluxations’, creates a loss of normal flexibility within the spine. This results in stiffness, which further leads to resistance and decreased performance. These changes can then cause stress in other joints and muscles, and a deterioration pattern ensues.

This process and the role of the chiropractor is similar to that of an orthodontist. The orthodontist applies braces to the teeth and over a period of time makes regular adjustments and corrections to realign teeth, so that in time they will maintain their correct position. A chiropractor adjusts the spine to restore normal motion in the joint. This may need to be done a number of times, until the body accepts this as normal position and the muscles and ligaments support and maintain that motion.


The following are some of the symptoms that can indicate pain caused by a subluxations that may require care:

  • Abnormal posture
  • Unexplained deterioration in performance
  • ‘Puppy’ sitting
  • Sensitivity to touch
  • Reluctance to being groomed
  • Changes in behaviour
  • Lying on one side only
  • Even in the absence of pain, subluxations can affect muscle co-ordination and spinal mobility and therefore the performance of a dog, such as:

  • Uneven muscle tone
  • Abnormal or irregular gait (style of moving)
  • Lick granuloma on leg or paws
  • Acute neck or back pain, and pain upon lifting
  • Lameness, when vet has ruled out alternative causes
  • Reluctance to move, climb stairs or jump
  • Tail carried to one side
  • Have you encountered any of these problems with your dog?
    Call 01386 443 999 for an appointment asap if you have.