The Coloradoan Newspaper came out to interview us and watch Luna get adjusted. It was so fun and exciting to share what we do! Here is an excerpt of the article:
Canine Chiropractor: Local doctor looks out for animals’ nerves and joints
By Pat Farrier
How did you become an animal chiropractor? I always have had a great love for animals and have been so grateful for all the joy and laughter they have brought to my life. When I saw all the amazing things that chiropractic care has done for people, I realized this could be a great opportunity to return the favor. It is so exciting to be able to pass the knowledge and training I have received onto our animal companions. Personally, I saw the effects chiropractic care had on my own dog, Luna. As she was aging, she was really having trouble moving around. There came a point when she had a constant limp and could no longer make it up and down the stairs. After I began treating her with chiropractic care, her limp went away and she started moving better and with less pain. She became her old self again, something I was not sure would happen.
What kind of training does one need to become an animal chiropractor? For starters, one must either be a chiropractic doctor or a doctor of veterinary medicine. I have my bachelor’s degree in zoology from CSU and my human chiropractic doctorate from the University of Western States in Portland, Ore. Additional training is then required in the specific area of animal chiropractic. I attended the program at Parker University in Dallas, Texas, through the American Veterinary Chiropractic Association.
How does adjusting an animal’s spine and neck compare to adjusting a human spine? In some ways it is very similar. My area of expertise is chiropractic care, whether it is people or animals. The premise of chiropractic care is establishing healthy joints and proper nervous system function. Essentially, my job is to help the body move and function better. However, there are some differences. Animals have unique anatomies and suffer from unique conditions. Therefore it is crucial to find someone who is trained in animal chiropractic care from an accredited program. Animals also tend to respond faster than people and react positively to care. I have seen many animals have incredible improvements with only one or two treatments.
How do you get dogs and cats to cooperate with you? The whole purpose of the visit is to make the experience as gentle, comfortable, and stress free as possible. I work slowly to earn their trust, and once the animals know what is going on they often love their visits and get very excited to see me.
How can a pet owner tell when it’s time to call in a chiropractor? The great thing about chiropractic care is that it is beneficial for multiple conditions. If your pet has trouble getting up and down the stairs, trouble rising, getting in the car, trouble eating, no longer likes being picked up, or simply doesn’t seem like themselves, chiropractic care can help. Chiropractic care can also help with performance in agility, flyball, or working dogs.
What species and breed have the most trouble with their spines? There are certainly breed dispositions or size concerns that will show up with similar conditions. I have seen a lot of rib issues with small dogs who are picked up quite a bit. I have seen low back and pelvis issues with the larger breeds (German Shepherds, labs, and Great Danes). Neck pain can also be a problem for dogs who tend to pull on the leash or have been chained sometime in their lives. I also have seen great results based on age. Working on elderly dogs can greatly improve mobility and incontinence issues.