With a Certification in Veterinary Spinal Manipulation Therapy, Dr. Pasteur offers therapeutic treatments and services to help horses perform at their best levels. Spinal manipulation treatments for animals are similar to services a chiropractor might provide for humans. For example, horses may need an “adjustment” if they are back sore, stiff to one side, or having trouble with changing leads. In addition to serving as a preventive measure for maintaining wellness, spinal manipulation can be used for sports medicine and to treat conditions, including:
- Lack of bend
- Back soreness
- Poor performance
- Difficulty with lateral work
- Trouble changing leads
- Always landing on one lead
- Jumping to one side
Knowing When a Horse Needs Adjusted
Dr. Pasteur offers professional exams, therapeutic treatments, and quality care for her patients. In addition, there are simple things you can easily see pertaining to your horse’s neck and back health. For example, a horse’s neck muscles should be full and smooth. Muscle tension lines in the neck may indicate a problem. Certain problems with the vertebrae can show up in the neck muscles, causing atrophy (muscles getting smaller) and/or tightening to compensate. Atrophied muscles can get small enough that the vertebrae can be seen as bumps in the lower part of the neck.
The muscles of your horse’s back should also be full and round. To check, simply run your hand down the back of your horse. Your hand should be slightly cupped from withers to tail. If your hand becomes flat or the muscles fall away from your hand, your horse likely has a back problem.
Importantly, a good adjustment does not take strength or a big movement. It should be a subtle, small movement in exactly the right spot. An adjustment should never put the horse in a position that it wouldn’t do naturally. There is a minimal amount of exertion, but the adjustment may be hard for you to spot. The positive effect on your horse, however, is obvious. When the horse licks and chews after an adjustment – we say that’s applause from the horse. When we see the horse shake his head or whole body after an adjustment – we say that’s a standing ovation.
Would you like to learn more about the benefits of spinal manipulation therapy for horses? Contact us at 352-362-0074 to schedule an appointment.