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I want to get a "tune-up" done on Wolfie's back-end, for lack of a better term. Having never done either of these modalities on dogs, I have no idea which one would be better for hip related issues. There is no pain, Wolfie runs like the wind BUT his back-end movement doesn't look 100% to me. Bit wobbly, I suppose?? I know that's an inept description... Anyway, which one should I go with? What worked for you?
 

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My vet provides a service called VOM or veterinary orthopedic manipulation. It did wonders for my shepherd's (who has since passed) mobility! Do some research on it!
 

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My vet provides a service called VOM or veterinary orthopedic manipulation. It did wonders for my shepherd's (who has since passed) mobility! Do some research on it!
I would agree that VOM would be the best choice in this case. Between 1997 and 1999 Dr. Bill Inman, DVM and I did about 35 animal chiropractic seminars together around the country. In fact I got him started doing these types of seminars.
VOM means Veterinary Orthopedic Manipulation. The practitioners use an Activator or similar instruments to adjust the dog's spine. It is safe and easy to do and most dog owners do it themselves--and they should. It is not only a treatment but also used to prevent musculo-skeletal problems and genetic disorders such as hip dysplasia. Once you see it done once, you'll be able to do it yourself. It's not something that is done once or twice. In fact many dog owners do this procedure once a week at home for their dog's entire life.
Daniel Kamen, D.C.
 

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Thank you, CHawkins & CanineChiro!! I will see if we have any chiropractors in our area who do VOM. I like the fact that it can be done at home by us, once we learn the right techniques. CanineChiro, I wonder if there is any DVD of this process available to train us??
 

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I have an activator here, and most likely do much of what VOM practitioners do (in general, VOM practitioners are not chiropractors). I find that it can help with muscle tightness and holding patterns, but that it is in no way a replacement for chiropractor care. My dogs, even after I use the unit on them, still need an adjustment by a "real" chiropractor.

I would be very concerned about most folks doing this stuff when they aren't under the supervision of someone that knows what they are doing - and to me, that means a certified chiropractor, not someone that took a weekend course in VOM. There have been times when I have done my protocol at home, and it has made things worse. The *only* reason I attempt these things is because I know that I have someone that can fix any problems that I might create. Btw, my understanding is that most VOM practitioners don't know how to undo the damage that they might do otherwise also. Had a VOM practitioner gotten a hold of my girl when I first had her treated, it would have been an utter and complete disaster.

Most folks that know me know that you aren't going to find a more pro-chiro person around. I think it's not just about not moving well because the spine might be "kinked", but the nervous system feeds so much in the body, the muscles, the organs, vision, etc., that I think keeping the spine in alingment and mobile is one of the healthiest things you can do for any animal, including us humans.

However, generally, I don't think that adjustments are a "do at home" process. I think general dog owners can do a heck of a lot of damage. And trying a lot of this stuff when you don't have a someone qualified to assist you, I think is foolish and dangerous. There's a reason why chiropractors are trained - it's because there is something to this "bone thing". I don't consider myself novice in this area, but I know that I could do a lot of damage.

That being said, I think a lot of the soft tissue stuff is great - I just think the do-it-yourself adjustment stuff is scary and cause for concern.
 

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......It is not only a treatment but also used to prevent musculo-skeletal problems and genetic disorders such as hip dysplasia...... .
Dr. Kamen, I keep seeing this written and am unclear on the process...how do these techniques actually prevent hip dysplasia? I understand preventing arthritis, but not the HD part?
 

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They big problem I see with acupuncture and chiropractics is that the patient needs to believe strongly in that kind of therapy. That may be just a bit beyond the mental capacity of a dog... even a GSD. How do you instill power-of-suggestion in a dog? I'm not saying that voodoo doesn't work at all.
 

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They big problem I see with acupuncture and chiropractics is that the patient needs to believe strongly in that kind of therapy. That may be just a bit beyond the mental capacity of a dog... even a GSD. How do you instill power-of-suggestion in a dog? I'm not saying that voodoo doesn't work at all.
I find that this isn't true at all. The biggest skeptics of all can find relief!

I think there is no question any more whether acupuncture, chiropractic, and muscle release techniques (like VOM) help dogs tremendously.
 

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I find that this isn't true at all. The biggest skeptics of all can find relief!

I think there is no question any more whether acupuncture, chiropractic, and muscle release techniques (like VOM) help dogs tremendously.
Sorry... I've been deeply involved in medicine and surgical care for nearly 30 years and while I do think that some of those therapies can provide temporary relief... as in, feeling a little better for a short period of time, structural orthopedic problems cannot be repaired with manipulation or needles in certain neuro-pathways. It's like saying that you can fix a bridge with cracks in it by having a shaman dance around it and offer beads with special properties. Offering the temporary relief is fine and admirable, but it is almost never a cure. Wish it was.
 

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Sorry... I've been deeply involved in medicine and surgical care for nearly 30 years.....
I supposed that I would expect someone with your background to have a very specific bias ;)

You're couple of posts are kinda all over the place, since your other posts commented on how they aren't useful unless the belief is there, which of course is not the case.

This posts now is commenting on how they cannot cure orthopedic problems that are present, I would say that it depends on what you are treating and why. No, it won't cure a bad hip, or a cracked bone, etc. That's pretty obvious. But in many cases, it can help the body's own healing response, it can cure some things, from some digestive and urinary problems, to sometimes a fast heartrate, to some vision and hearing problems, etc. Other times it can only help manage, very often when there are no other ways to manage. These modalities certainly can help **prevent** many things.

There are so many conditions that are not surgical in nature which they can treat, and other conditions which they can prevent.
 

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I supposed that I would expect someone with your background to have a very specific bias ;)

You're couple of posts are kinda all over the place, since your other posts commented on how they aren't useful unless the belief is there, which of course is not the case.

This posts now is commenting on how they cannot cure orthopedic problems that are present, I would say that it depends on what you are treating and why. No, it won't cure a bad hip, or a cracked bone, etc. That's pretty obvious. But in many cases, it can help the body's own healing response, it can cure some things, from some digestive and urinary problems, to sometimes a fast heartrate, to some vision and hearing problems, etc. Other times it can only help manage, very often when there are no other ways to manage. These modalities certainly can help **prevent** many things.

There are so many conditions that are not surgical in nature which they can treat, and other conditions which they can prevent.
Well, "the belief" can indeed be a powerful medicine, at least in humans. I also DO believe that many muscular and tendon issues can be be improved with PT type solutions. We probably won't agree on much else re the subject, so I'll just stay out of this one from now on. Peace.
 

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Dr. Kamen, I keep seeing this written and am unclear on the process...how do these techniques actually prevent hip dysplasia? I understand preventing arthritis, but not the HD part?

About at the 4:30 point, the VOM practitioner is talking about how the tightness near the thoracic/lumbar area (I may have that off a bit) pulls on the psoas muscle , which affets the hip. Dr. Kamen, are these your thoughts too?

Also, since you're here asking questions, I found this picture:

On this VOM site: http://www.lbah.com/images/canine/disk_disease/rad.jpg

They mention that the arrow is pointing at changes that are occurring due to nerve dysfunction. Can you explain that further? These are the changes that I see on my GSD's xrays, at roughly the same spot. (If you're curious, his xrays are in this thread:
http://www.germanshepherds.com/forum/health-issues/126862-maxs-knee-bonus-hip-back-xrays.html#post1716838 )
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Lisa, thanks for sharing the video! That bit around the 1:43 mark about detecting the subluxations was great! I was putting very very gentle pressure with the tips of my fingers along Wolfie's spine yesterday and parts of his mid-spine was showing spasms like that. I had no idea what it meant until now!
 

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I want to get a "tune-up" done on Wolfie's back-end, for lack of a better term. Having never done either of these modalities on dogs, I have no idea which one would be better for hip related issues. There is no pain, Wolfie runs like the wind BUT his back-end movement doesn't look 100% to me. Bit wobbly, I suppose?? I know that's an inept description... Anyway, which one should I go with? What worked for you?
Acupuncture is mostly used for pain relief and is very effective. Chiropractic is used to restore normal joint function where ever possible. For a tune up you might consider both, but if I had to choose one for your dog's wobbly gait I would go with chiropractic, particularly using an Activator type instrument (Chiropractic Adjusting Tool). It's safe and effective and you can do it yourself! And on a regular basis, meaning twice a week.
I would say for most chiropractic procedures, you should consult with a licensed veterinarian or a human chiropractor trained in animal chiropractic. But the Activator as used on animals is a different matter. That's one thing dog owners can safely do themselves after a short training session.
 

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Animal Chiropractic - Find an AVCA certified doctor to adjust your horse, dog, cat or exotic.

Here is the list as well.

We use the certified one in the Nashville area - Mark. For dogs that have been jammed during training (does happen) and trialing, etc, it is great to supplement with the rest and swimming.

Scary thing is that anyone will hang out there shingle for this. The working dog people in the area go to Mark. Proven results.

Had to take one of our young males last month - he was jammed pretty badly by a helper during training (and knee slammed into shoulder). Chiro was one of the things that we did, in addition to rest, etc.
 

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