A chiropractor's role in helping your animal
What is scope?
Scope is an overarching term that encompasses what is within a provider's ability to understand, perform, and give advice about.
A chiropractor's scope (when working on animals) is to assess and address dysfunction in the musculoskeletal system. Through the adjustment, we can remove interference and allow the body to function better as a whole.
In many states across the US, a human chiropractor may seek additional training to work on animals. By the way, look into the AVCA or the IVCA for well qualified docs in the United States!
Depending on your area's laws, a human chiropractor may also require veterinary referral or supervision to work on your animal. (This is not required provided your animal chiropractor is a veterinarian first.)
These laws were put into place in many regions because it is outside of a chiropractor's scope to rule in/out certain veterinary diseases.
I heard this analogy the other day that really struck me.
When it comes to your animal's musculoskeletal system, think of tuning an instrument. VS listening to a symphony
A veterinarian's job is to rule out disease. Like tuning a guitar, a vet will find something "out of tune" in the instrument and will treat the problem with broad strokes in order to make the instrument "sound normal" again.
An animal chiropractor's job is to listen to the orchestra and find where something is out of tune, on the wrong tempo, or playing incorrectly. Globally, we can identify where there is dysfunction and make delicate adjustments to try and restore function before an in-depth tune up needs to happen.
There is a place for both of these types of intervention. One focuses on function whereas the other focuses on pathology.
That is why having BOTH types of professionals can be a benefit to your animal's health care.
Where do you get your crack? From a dealer or a doctor?
Certain professionals knows when to properly apply a certain substance or service... whereas laypeople do not. Not to mention, professionals comes with insurance!
When it comes to chiropractic, a pair of untrained hands can be just as dangerous as an illicit drug.
Be sure to choose someone that fully understands where, when, how, and WHEN NOT to administer an adjustment.
--> In many regions a professional other than a veterinarian performing an adjustment will need a referral from a vet prior to service. This is a benefit to your animal as it can rule out certain conditions that could be made worse by an adjustment!
You can find a well qualified animal chiropractic professional by going online to the AVCA or IVCA website.
Always ask about a provider's education and do your research before allowing them to work on your animal.
When you go to your veterinarian, it is a vet's job to determine XYZ pathology and treat your pet.
As an animal chiropractor, it is my job to find what XYZ pathology is interfering with from a functional perspective and comanage the complaint with your vet so improvements can be made.
This is a very subtle difference.
For example, not every pet with luxating patella (dogs) or kissing spine (horses) is the same.
The pain is not exactly alike. The quality of life is different. One pet may struggle with certain tasks that another pet with the same condition does not.
For a vet, it's the same textbook diagnosis.
For a chiropractor, it's two different patients with different needs.
I challenge you to reconsider how you look at chiropractic care.
When it comes to animals, we are the square peg trying to be stuffed in a proverbial round hole.
What we do is distinct, different, and still very important when it comes to your animal's care.
*This blog post is based on my opinion and should not constitute, nor should it replace, veterinary advice. Please ask your vet about chiropractic care and make an informed decision based upon what is right for you and your animal.*
I want to let you know you came to the right place for integrative and holistic health for your pet!
We are certified by the AVCA which is a top notch and rigorous certification program of 200+ hours class time followed by a written and practical board exam. We take 10 yearly hours of continuing education because we value knowing the most in order to provide the best.
When choosing adjustments for your pet, choose someone licensed, trained, and certified.