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Horse Care and Comfort

chiropractic work


Hello! I am a first-time horse owner and recently purchased a 9yr old spotted saddle horse mare. She is a sweetie and is well trained. However, we have had some issues with her hind legs almost immediately after the purchase. From the surface, it looks conformational, but after working with her, I do think it has to do with deconditioning and some issues in her back and sacrum. Basically, she has many lumps and bumps on her spine and a saddle sore scar. She also tucks her pelvis under quite a bit to make an extremely low tail set. She was pretty deconditioned when I bought her too, and she walks a little stiff in her hind end. Has anyone ever used chiropractors to help their horse with issues like this? or any issues at all? My vet is open to alternative treatments, but I just want to hear about some others experiences too!

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I LOVE my chiropractor. He is absolutely awesome and is very thorough in assessment of my horse and all other horses that get adjusted or line up to get adjusted. He adjusts with his hand and the popping noise which all horses seem to just LOVE. There are vets that use devices or finger tips to do their supposed adjustments but I know for a fact that it is not as effective. He has shown me specific stretching for my horse and her needs. He evaluates every joint, saddle position and even the horse with the rider to FULLY find out what is going on. My warning to you is to make sure that the person adjusting your horse is a human chiropractor who is trained for 2 years to adjust animals. This is different from a vet who takes a few hours of training to use a device to adjust or use what they call mobilize. We have both options at our barn and the chiropractor is the one that does the job done and is super busy with satisfied owners. Good luck to you.

Kicki -- Sweden
Hello! 100 lessons completed 150 lessons completed 200 lessons completed 250 lessons completed 300 lessons completed 350 lessons completed 400 lessons completed 450 lessons completed 500 lessons completed 550 lessons completed 600 lessons completed

Your horse do sounds like she needs a chiropractor and I can only second what horselover says!
The chiropractors I've seen with my horses have also been excellent help and done a great job.
It can't be stressed enough, though, that you need to find a well educated chiropractor with real horse expertise and thorough education. Ask for credentials! (And do check what your - as well as the chiropractor's - insurance demands, in case something goes wrong!)
Also, massaging,stretching and correct work under saddle or in long reins are essential complements to the chiropractors work, since he/she can pull things into the right position, but the muscles will pull it back out of sync again if not worked properly.
Another word of caution! Back problems should always be assessed by a vet and possibly checked by x-ray before "tampered" with. There have been examples where chiropractors have misjudged and damaged skeletal parts of the spine. (Using a rubber club - an instrument I personally don't approve of, but I'm sure in the right hands it is of great use.)


Thank you so much for your comments and advice! I really appreciate it! I've taken it and looked into some local chiropractors here and asked for recommendations from others at my barn. I plan on making an appointment soon. I will also ask for advice in massaging, stretching, and correct work.

I never thought about having her back xrayed before. Thanks for that advice. I will consult with my vet about this!


Just an update--I took my horse to a chiropractor/vet that has tons of experience and he worked wonders with her! I learned that because she is a cross between what he thinks is a shetland pony and tennessee walker--that her hind legs are longer and is built somewhat "downhill" which makes her seem a bit off in her hind legs. She also has some stifle issues on her left hind. She was very stiff when she first went there, but he did some work on her including acupuncture and she left with a nice "sway" in her walk. I am very excited about the way she responded! Thanks for the advice again!