Animal osteopathy (also known as veterinary osteopathy) is the name given to osteopathy when it is applied to animals. Animal osteopaths most commonly treat horses, dogs and cats. They also occasionally treat other household pets and farmyard animals. All animal osteopaths are fully qualified human osteopaths, have undertaken specialist post-graduate training in animal osteopathy and are registered with the general osteopathic council.
Equine and Canine Osteopathy is a branch of animal osteopathy which is concerned with treating horses and dogs. It is an established, recognised system of treatment that uses physical techniques to remove tension and restrictions in the horses and dogs musculo-skeletal systems. By working on the joints and muscles to improve blood flow and regulating nerve supply, osteopathy works on many different levels with the aim of rebalancing the body’s structures. This aids the animals’ function by relieving pain, preventing injury and maximising movement and performance.
Canine specialist osteopaths are commonly known for helping to relieve a wide range of symptoms, For example: age associated stiffness, conformation related problems, canine sports performance issues and minor canine musculoskeletal injuries.
As Osteopaths we take the time to try to understand our canine patients, and their unique combination of symptoms, medical history and lifestyle. This helps to make an accurate diagnosis of the causes of the pain or lack of function (rather than just addressing the site of the condition), and from that, to formulate a treatment plan that will aim to achieve the best outcome.
As a therapeutic discipline, Osteopathy uses the application of joint articulation and gentle soft tissue techniques to your dog to release tight and irritated muscles, tendons and ligaments with the aim of relaxing them and reducing irritation in surrounding tissues. This treatment is intended to then result in a reduction of your dog’s pain symptoms and thereby increase their range of movement.
Any animal’s owner must always consult their veterinary surgeon prior to seeking osteopathic treatment.
Most vets are, however, aware of the benefits of complementary treatment for animals and will readily give their permission for the animal to be treated.