Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Before it’s too late...

I have been treating animals, providing chiropractic care for many of the same problems that I treat my human patients.  I often have pet owners calling or emailing me, asking if I can help their beloved pet.  Hearing the stories about a pet who has been progressively experiencing weakness in his legs, inability to engage in the activities that bring him joy, and developing wasting of his muscles, all taking place over a month or more.  I catch myself wishing and wondering how and why I wasn’t able to help this animal until recovery seems daunting. 

In some cases time is often of the essence when someone wants conservative care for their animal, especially in the case of nerve involvement.  Some problems are much more difficult to treat as time goes on.  Sometimes it can even be difficult to tell if your pet is experiencing pain, so we have to look for other indicators.  Some of these are things as simple as behavioral changes, licking a paw continually (indicator for numbness), “skipping” while running, sitting or lying only on one side, unwillingness to participate in a loved game, or not wanting to walk on tile or hardwood floors.

It is crucial to seek help for your pet sooner rather than later.  I believe it takes a lot to slow down an animal that loves to please his master, just like a child who won’t let a little pain stop them from playing! It breaks my heart to have someone carry their dog in on a sling because he is unable to walk any longer, asking me to help.  I entreat pet owners to act at the first sign of trouble.  For this reason, periodic preventative/maintenance care is just as important for our pets as it is for us.  Please don't wait until it is too late...

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