Animal chiropractic is the treatment of Vertebral Subluxation Complexes (VSCs) by the use of a practitioners hands and body to deliver a controlled thrust to an area diagnosed as not moving completely through normal range of motion. This controlled movement returns joints to normal biomechanical function allowing for the optimum health and mobility of the animal. (The full body assessment and diagnosis of possible pain, disease or injury during evaluation is a component of veterinary medicine as opposed to traditional chiropractic care.)
A VSC is a joint space that is not properly moving through it's complete range of motion. Some people will hear the practitioner's use the terms "out" or "stuck" when working with their animals. These areas create restriction of movement, and disruption of the flow of information and nutrients that occur via nerves, veins, arteries and lymphatics. This can translate to pain, cramping, nerve irritation, poor nerve conduction, gait changes, conformation changes, and poor nutrient flow to muscles and organs. A chiropractor (DC) or veterinarian (DVM) certified in animal chiropractic can evaluate an animal for VSCs during chiropractic care, as well as correct them if medically safe to do so. When these things are left too long, there can be uneven muscles, pain, lameness, neuropathies, or even organ dysfunction.
Chiropractic treatments are not only used to treat conditions, but are used to prevent or delay problems. Animals that will have or do have an active lifestyle, or have conformation abnormalities, greatly benefit from preventative chiropractic care that reduces and slows onset and progression of arthritis. There are lot's of conditions where chiropractic has been shown to be beneficial including: