If you, or your animal, have never been to a chiropractor before you will find that the chiropractic approach to your health is much different from what you have been exposed to all of your life. No chiropractor can perform miracles. Realignment of the skeletal framework of the body can be a difficult process. Ligaments and muscles must shift and realign themselves. This is a natural rearrangement and cannot be hurried.


Animal chiropractic is a drug-free approach to your animal’s health care. It is the Science, Art and Philosophy that utilizes the inborn recuperative powers of all living creatures. It restores the important relationship between the animal’s spine and nervous system. This helps them regain and maintain their health. The goal of the animal chiropractor is to correct subluxations, restoring normal nerve function and improving the animal’s well being.


Due to a number of factors that are unique to your animal, spinal and joint segments can either get out of alignment or begin to function irregularly. Chiropractors call these subluxations. As a result, symptoms occur due to nerve irritation or pinching, tissue inflammation or muscle spasm. Later, the joints will prematurely degenerate causing even more problems. The nerves are usually the key factor because they can affects so many things. When they are pinched or irritated, they will not only cause specific symptoms, but affect the strength of the area and can even cause dysfunction in a corresponding organ system. Because the nerves are such a vital part of the body’s healing system, subluxations will also slow down the body’s ability to heal or adapt properly.

Correcting subluxations not only relieves symptoms, but it turns up the power. This can help make your animal more powerful in many ways.


Chiropractors use a technique called an adjustment to correct the subluxations and help the joints function more normally.


A number of factors must be considered:
Number of subluxations
How long it has been there
Severity of the subluxations
Age and ability to heal    Regular activities or stresses
Willingness to co-operate

The rate of recovery is unique and cannot be compared to others.


The following will explain some of the stages of care to expect. Please discuss your individual needs with Dr. Heick. As always, YOU decide what quality of care you want.


Our first goal is to relieve any immediate symptoms and get your animal feeling better and functioning better quickly. If the subluxations have been there for a while, the animal has learned to adapt, probably in many different ways. In other words, it becomes normal to be out of place and time is usually required to make lasting changes. Visits are usually frequent, each treatment building on the one before. For best results keep your appointments.


More important than pain relief is correcting all underlying mechanical faults. Your animal should be feeling much better but subluxations are still present and must be corrected. To allow full healing of the soft tissues, we must maintain those corrections. This gives the body a chance to adapt to the new, improved, situation. If treatment ends before the soft tissues and muscles are healed, a relapse is likely. Frequency of treatment is usually decreased considerably at this stage.


Your animal’s health affects everything they do. Spinal checkups will ensure that your animal’s spine continues to function well and that there is no interference with its nervous system. Fewer problems, minimal degeneration and better overall health result.


The canine or equine athlete will need near-perfect spinal and joint mechanics to give optimum performance. The more efficient your animal functions, the better the performance. To ensure optimum function, some owners choose to have them adjusted a day or two before the event. A few even have their animals adjusted just before every run. While for most this might be overdoing it, it has proven to be most beneficial in some cases. Its certainly not a problem to adjust and animal on the day of an event.


As always, should and injury occur that might be affecting your dog’s spinal or joint structures, see your animal chiropractor. Serious injury must ALWAYS be checked first by a veterinarian.


The physical demands of the animal athlete can cause spinal segments to get out of alignment. Peripheral joints (those in the front and hind limbs) can also become fixated. The body is constantly trying to avoid pain and does so by compensating in various ways. Specifically, other spinal segments move more or differently than they’re designed. The animal temporarily becomes pain free but their function becomes altered. From a performance perspective it may not be critical for the family pet, although family pets deserve proper spinal and joints mechanics too, but for the canine athlete, performance becomes noticeably affected.

Subluxations will also have an effect on the animal’s nervous system. Nerves can become pinched or irritated, not only causing symptoms, but affecting the strength of the area and even causing dysfunction in a corresponding organ system. Because the nervous system is the main power behind the healing system in the body, subluxations will also slow down the body’s ability to heal or adapt properly. Correcting subluxations will not only relieve symptoms but will have a positive affect on their energy. This usually results in an increase in the performance level of the animal.


Dr. Heick would be happy to talk to your group, club, school, etc., on matters concerning health, chiropractic or animal chiropractic.


While we are required to set aside specific hours for animals, emergency appointments can often be arranged. Please call our office and we will try to accommodate your animal.


The College of Chiropractors of Ontario (CCO) has specific regulations regarding the chiropractic treatment of animals. Animals must have SEPARATE TREATMENT ROOMS at all times and animal treatment HOURS MUST BE SEPARATE from regular patients. Please respect these times. On occasion, due to extenuating circumstances, human patients might be seen during animal hours. When possible, arrangements can be made for a regular patients and their animals to be seen during the same treatment periods, but only during animal hours. Please discuss your individual needs with our staff.


Dr. Heick is a Doctor of Chiropractic, licensed in Ontario, to diagnose and treat neuro-musculoskeletal disorders in humans with a specialty training in Animal Chiropractic. She is NOT a Veterinarian and will not take responsibility for the primary health care of your animal. Chiropractic care is NOT  intended to replace traditional veterinary care. It is considered a specialized complementary therapy for animals and should always be used in conjunction with Veterinary care.