February 2016

Well-Adusted Pets

Author: Courtney Van Acker

I had a play date a couple days ago with my favorite girlfriend, the one with the long blonde hair and the pink collar. I guess I chased her around too much, because boy am I sore! I might be getting too old to play like that, but I feel like a kid again when Mom takes me to the beach. She says if I don’t start moving better soon, she is going to take me to the vet. I guess if I could get rid of these aches and pains it wouldn’t be such a terrible thing.

Here we are four days after the beach and I just got back from the veterinary office. I feel a little better because they gave me some medicine, but I’m limping a bit; going up stairs really hurts, and I can’t even sleep in the bed or on the couch right now, because it hurts to jump up there. The vet said hopefully it’s nothing too serious, maybe I strained a muscle running and playing; but I could have an injury to my back…well that doesn’t sound good!

I overheard Mom ask the vet about a chiropractor for me. An animal chiropractor? I didn’t even know there was such a thing! The vet said it was okay to have the animal chiropractor check me out; it is a safe and effective way to help treat spinal issues and the surrounding soft tissue. The vet knows Dr. Courtney (the animal chiropractor) is properly trained and will send me back in to get checked out if things aren’t going the way they should.

I just heard Mom get off the phone with the chiropractor. She will be here (I don’t have to go anywhere!) tomorrow at 10 a.m. I’m not sure what to expect, but I’m excited.

Here we go. My first visit with the doggy chiropractor. Dr. Courtney is carrying a big block for me to stand on while she works on me. She had me walk back and forth a few times so she could see how I move, then Mom gave her details of my life history and what happened on the beach at my playdate.

Dr. Courtney explained that chiropractors feel all the joints in the spine and find ones that aren’t working properly. If the joint isn’t moving, it will cause inflammation, muscle tightness, and pressure on the nerves exiting the spine. The nerves control everything in the body, i.e. pain, movement, and everything on the inside as well. Any abnormal pressure on the nerves causes interference with the signals the nerves are trying to send back and forth. No wonder I’m having all these problems….

The best thing is the chiropractic adjustment didn’t hurt. It was a little tender over the area where my back was inflamed, but nothing I couldn’t handle, and I knew it would feel better afterward, so I let her fix me. I even got lots of hugs and a treat for being a good boy. She said I may be a little tender afterwards, but it won’t last too long. She wants to see me again next week to see how I responded to the treatment, but after a few visits to get everything calmed down, I should get back to my old self.

I will say, I feel a whole lot better since Dr. Courtney was here. I’m not limping as much, and I just may be able to get back up on that couch tomorrow. 

Courtney VanAcker, D.C., ART is a certified animal chiropractor.

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