This presentation discusses the state of animal chiropractic care. It is also designed to illustrate the variety of disorders and the response of quadrupeds to chiropractic spinal adjustments and management. Further, it serves to portray the range of animals that have been served by chiropractic spinal care. The diversity of conditions and their neurological implications provides some insight into the current models of the vertebral subluxation complex.
Method : A call for cases was made through an informal electronic newsletter. This proved to be most successful. In addition, the authors’ own experiences also brought examples of animal patients. Finally, an internet search of The Index to Chiropractic Literature, PubMed and Google, revealed informative detail on the emerging profession of veterinary chiropractic.
Review: There is remarkably little in the way of high-level research on spinal adjustments of animals as the patients. There are however, extensive papers on animals as research subjects on this topic. It became apparent that pet owners’ demands have driven the advancement of this relatively new profession.
Discussion: A general discussion on the emergence and background of veterinary chiropractic is presented. The cases cited are not intended to be in classic case history format. The manner in which patients bring pets to chiropractors can often be casual and even impromptu. However, with some practitioners specialising their practice in animals, a greater volume of formal evidence is bound to emerge. Indeed it is surprising that the profession has been accepted and evolved thus far in the absence of greater research.
Conclusion: Examples of somatic and somatovisceral neurovertebral disorders afflicting vertebrates are presented. However, these anecdotal histories are not at a level approaching formal research. They are examples of the types of cases seen regularly and noted at this stage in the development of the veterinarian chiropractic profession. The terminology (‘chiropractic’ and ‘subluxation’), and concepts appear to have been embraced by veterinarian chiropractors, associations and practitioners. Further, chiropractic techniques seem also to have been adopted. Despite the dearth of research, veterinary science appears to have implemented and merged with a chiropractic model of health care - seemingly more readily than medicine.
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