Equine Chiropractors! - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 11 Old 06-07-2010, 01:19 AM Thread Starter
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Equine Chiropractors!

Have you ever had a chiropractor come out and adjust your horse? How about acupuncture? Did you notice a difference afterward and would you recommend it to others?

I have an appointment with a chiropractor/acupuncturist who also is licensed vet which makes me feel better about the whole thing but I'm curious if anyone here has much experience with their horses?

He has a still-undiagnosed lameness (x-rays didn't show anything obvious) and although he has been improving with corrective shoeing/rest I'm hoping that this will help recognize any underlying issues he may have and help speed up his recovery process so he starts feeling better.

I can't find many clear videos on Youtube, I'm really curious what on earth this will look like!

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post #2 of 11 Old 06-08-2010, 03:57 AM
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I have had a chiropractor out for my mare a couple of times as she gets a bit of soreness in her hips from time to time, it is a condition she will alsways have caused by lots of hard riding before I got her so I will most likely have to have the chiropractor out every 4-6 months for the rest of her life to keep her sound. He does a fantastic job though!! He stretches all her legs right out and lifts her hind legs right up high until the tight muscles release properly. He then prescribes lots of long, loose trot work (no collection at all) for about a week afterwards to strengthen the muscles and really loosen her up. I know someone who didn't do the trot work afterwards and their horse was lame again within 3 weeks. My horse loves the chiropractor and is always sooooooo relaxed afterwards. Usually they will have a big drink, sleep and wee (to remove the toxins that have been released) afterwards.

Boxer Diligent, loyal, strong
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post #3 of 11 Old 06-08-2010, 06:36 AM
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I have more experience with equine acupuncture; and I am a pretty big fan.

I had a 33 year old very beloved large pony who was stiff and arthritic, particularly in the stifle and hip. He was uncomfortable enough I was considering euthanasia so I gave acupunture a try. (There's a vet in the practice I use who's a licensed acupunture practitioner.) Sweet old pony stood like a rock and didn't move an eyelid while the needles went in. When they came out, he had this really funny look on his face; then picked up the lame leg and gave this enormous, head down, back arched stretch with his stifle snapping, crackling and popping, groaned and then *trotted off sound*.

It was amazing, and if we had thought to video it, acupunture treatment would be booming. I had him treated several more times with good, though less dramatic, results before I did have to put him down at 35. Acupunture gave him two more years of decent quality life.

I will say that I think in most cases it's palliative rather than therapeutic (pain-relieving rather than eliminating the cause.) If you're out of other treatment options, I would give it a try on your horse. The cost is not outrageous, and it's minimally invasive and very low risk.

As far as chiropractic, I am a great believer in it for people, a moderate believer for horses. I have known cases with good results, and some with very poor, where the horses were worse afterwards. I think it depends first off on the practitioner and second of all, on the root cause of the horse's lameness. Since xrays are inconclusive for your guy, if you find a chiropracter with good references and who does a lot of the stretching that boxer talks about above, it may also be worth a try.

Good luck, must be incredibly frustrating.
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post #4 of 11 Old 06-08-2010, 09:46 AM
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I don't have any experience with an equine chiro, but I just had a equine massage therapist come out and the difference is AMAZING so far. I have never, in the two years that I've seen Lacey almost everyday, seen her this relaxed and happy. I didn't think it was going to do much for her since it's just a massage, yknow? But so far I am completely amazed.
Yesterday we sat together in the sun for a while and she just fell right asleep and didn't need to move for upwards of 20 minutes and she's a fidgety horse!
I am totally a believer now! Haha

Fabio - 13 year old Arabian/Lipizzan gelding

Rest peacefully, Lacey.
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post #5 of 11 Old 06-08-2010, 10:04 AM
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I have a chiro/massage therapist who works on my horses when need be. And the difference is awesome. Just my suggestion would be always make sure they are certified in doing so or they may cause damage. A vet may know some but not all. For the same reason... I wont let a vet float my horses teeth. Only an equine dentist. But if they know how.... the outcome can be absolutley AMAZING.
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post #6 of 11 Old 06-08-2010, 11:47 AM
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I had someone come out and Adjust Jester and Rico, and dang! There was a huge differance afterwards. They were happy, healthy, and just a lot more fun! Apparantly their backs ha dknots on top of knots, which obviously made them sore. Haha, sounds like me

Pssh.I didn't pick up the wrong lead
It's called a counter canter...
...A very advanced maneuver.
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post #7 of 11 Old 06-08-2010, 10:22 PM
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I actually have a chiropractor coming to see my horse tomorrow. I have to get him done every so often because he's got weird hips and gets a bad back. I can tell when he needs to be seen because he gets all jiggy and in a bad mood. He really seems to enjoy it, mostly he goes all soft and sleepy and there is a huge difference.

make sure after your horse has been done to turn him out for a while instead of putting him in a stall, so he can walk around and not stiffen up again.
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post #8 of 11 Old 06-08-2010, 10:49 PM
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I am an equine massage therapist. I went to school a few years back looking for help for my EPM mare. It helped her tremendously. Since she passed away about 3 years ago, I've done some work for friends and a few clients and they have all seen a difference. IMO all horses can benefit from a massage. It is relatively easy to learn and for a basic bare bones massage, anyone can do it. A pretty good book to get you started is http://www.amazon.com/Beating-muscle-injuries-horses-correction/dp/B00070QZAC/ref=pd_sim_b_6 Jack Meagher was the founder of massage therapy and his techniques are the ones I was taught.

As far as Chiro goes, ive seen a few in our area work and in my opinion, the ones around here anyways, are bums. No after care given, no real difference in the horses, no real anything. Im sure there are good ones out there...maybe the horses that I saw worked on didn't really need it.

Ive never done accupunture for my horses but I have had it for myself and as maura explained, it is more of a relief and a solution. And while it may make you squeemish to think of all those needles...the only thing I felt was 'ahhhhh'
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post #9 of 11 Old 06-08-2010, 11:52 PM
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Unfortunately, no. The closest chiro I have been able to find is several hours away and does not make trips up here. I have several horses that probably should be checked but I cannot make 3 trips down there. They just have to deal with it I guess. Though if there is one that seems sore, I will saddle and use a different one.
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post #10 of 11 Old 06-09-2010, 02:41 AM
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My friends mare was constantly ouchie with no know explanation and didn't show up on X-rays. Had a Chiro come out and he made some adjustments combined with lots of stretching and showed her how to stretch her so that the problem won't be so bad anymore.

And my post is worded really odd, sorry I'm really tired

June 14, 2012
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