Vet Basics

About Equine Chiropractic, or Manual Therapy


Equine (horse) chiropractic care is a way of using the hands to support the health and proper function the nervous system and how it interacts with the muscles and other tissues of the body. “Performance horses often get sore from their shows, and with chiropractic, I can help them recover faster and perform better.” according to Dr. Jessica Thornton of Hagyard Equine Medical Institute.

“Performance horses often get sore from their shows, and with chiropractic, I can help them recover faster and perform better.”

The nerves in a horse’s body control almost every movement and process, and most of these nerves originate in the brain and spinal cord. Because any abnormality in the spine can have an impact at other places in the body, causing pain, stiffness, muscle tension and more, chiropractic techniques generally focus on the spine, and to some degree, the head, pelvis (around the hips) and legs. 

In this video, you’ll see how Dr. Thornton applies force to specific joints and other areas, to make adjustments that bring the spine back into alignment. “Even though horses are such large animals, and it looks like it would take a lot of strength to actually do chiropractic on them, it’s more about technique and actually getting the correct adjustment on them.”

Chiropractic techniques are generally used to help reduce pain and stiffness, restore mobility and function as well as to help the horse perform at its best.

Did you like this video? Then learn more about equine veterinarians. Or watch an actual lameness exam. You can also check out a video on equine acupuncture.

Written by: Dr. Chris Carpenter
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