Agility dogs

Many agility dogs develop neck and back pain as a result of subluxations within the cervical and thoracic spine.

Dogs carry 60 percent of their weight on their front legs, add to this stress the act of an “A Frame” and jumps–and the stress increases.

The shoulder, upper back, and neck take on the stress and if there exists a subluxation (locked up joint irritating a nerve), then performance drops such as knocking down poles and lameness.

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Alternative Medicine for Geriatric Pets

Our pets often give us the best years of their life, so it only make sense that in our pet’s old age, we want them to be as comfortable as possible. A great way to help your pets through their old age is with regular chiropractic visits.

What was once thought of alternative medicine for humans is now pushing into the canine world, and in a big way. Studies show chiropractic work can be a tremendous help for geriatric dogs. Below, we have outlined just a few of the wonderful benefits that come with taking your dog to regular appointments.

Geriatric Care for your Pet

Keep the Spine In Line

Each little vertebra in your dog’s spine contributes to his or her overall health and wellbeing. Having a healthy spine alignment means that your dog has the full range of motion to curl up in a ball to sleep or to run and play, changing directions quickly. Having one vertebra that is out of alignment can compromise the vertebra’s mobility making it hyper-mobile. This in turn can throw other vertebrae out of alignment and can eventually lead to tighter, stiffer vertebrae. This means that your dog could potentially have difficulty moving. In older age, having full range of motion is a key to a long and healthy life.

Healthy Blood Vessels

In between each vertebra there are blood vessels that are responsible for sending nutrition into the spinal column and throughout the nearby joins. If your geriatric pet experiences any swelling in his or her joints, it could be due to decreased blood flow in these vessels. When the swelling is persistent, it can eventually lead to decreased mobility because tendons, ligaments, and other surrounding tissue can become damaged or restricted.

Additionally, decreased blood flow can lead to shrinking cartilage, making areas more prone to damage from trauma. Having a healthy spine can allow for proper blood flow through the vessels helping to ensure that your older dog is maintaining healthy joints and soft tissues.

Organ Health

Having a healthy system means that your dog’s body should be receiving the proper feedback from all of his or her internal organs. When there is a misalignment in the spine, the body might be sending signals to release more adrenaline into the body. This can throw off the natural amount of blood that is supplied to the skin, digestive system, and mucous membranes. Eventually, this could lead to very serious respiratory problems.

Additionally, gastrointestinal problems such as indigestion and bloat can be caused from a digestive system that is not sending the correct signals. When the internal organs are not sending the correct signals, the dog’s body can be more susceptible to a suppressed immune system leading to disease. For your geriatric dog, having optimal internal organ health is essential for a longer, healthier life.

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Many of my clients ask me what type of collar they

should get in order to keep their dog safe and prevent pulling.

The answer is not as simple as it looks. Of course a collar alone will not keep your dog from pulling and there are no substitute for dog training. 

On the other hand it is important to keep your furry friend from harm. That is my main goal in writing this blog.

Here are a few choices:

1. The flat collar.

This type of collar is probably the most commonly used and most readily available. You can also chose the color, design,

material and decorations.

This collar is useful if you plan on tying your dog outside for short periods of time. It is not as likely to cause injury to your dog.

 However if you plan on walking your dog, it may be more difficult to correct her as she tries to pull.

2. The Martingale. 

This collar is a cross between a choker and a flat collar. It can also be found in different colors and materials. The

advantage is that by flicking the leas...

In grade school, we’re all taught to take preventative measures to ensure an adequate amount of fire safety in our homes. We’re all well aware of the classic “stop, drop, and roll” routine but what about our pets?

Fire safety is essential for pets as well! After all, 40,000 pets are killed in house fires every year. While it may not be the very first thing we think about concerning fire safety, there are precautions that we should take specifically for our furry friends. Today, we’ll be going over a few of these fire safety measures so that you can keep your pets safe. 

Never Leave Your Pet Alone with Fire Hazards

Even the most well-behaved pets in the world shouldn’t be left alone for extended periods. This is especially true in the case of open flames. While it may seem harmless to leave your pet alone for a quick trip to the store, even small candles can present dangers.

A rowdy pet, such as a puppy or kitten, could easily run into or knock over a candle. If you aren’t home to see...

You May have been wondering why your cat is  behaving the way she is. Let's look at some of their behaviors:

1. Cat purring:

Most people know that cats purr when they are happy but did you know they can also purr when upset, injured or stressed? The purr comforts them. They first learn that behavior when feeding on the mother. Purring is the only noise they can make while drinking. It lets the mother know they are doing well.

Purring cause vibration of the larynx muscles at a rate of 20-30 per second.  It triggers a release  of hormones that relieves pain, improve bone density and heal wounds; some say they can help heal us as well.

2. Head butting:

Does your cat butt his head or rub against you? That is the way she greets you. Cats do that when they trust you to let you know they feel safe. Rubbing also allows them to share pheromones and leave their scent on you.

3. Kneading:

Cats learn to knead as newborns when they are feeding on the mother to stimu...

Hip dysplasia is a malformation of the hip joint, usually beginning with a subluxation of the femoral head in the acetabular cavity. This leads to premature wear and tear of the joint, and if left unattended, can evolve to progressive degenerative joint disease. This condition can cause hip and leg pain, stiffness, lameness, reluctance to rise, abnormal gait, ‘bunny hopping’, and muscle atrophy.Secondary symptoms may include Sciatic Neuralgia, sacroiliac joint pain, facet syndrome, and spinal subluxations. Though predominantly found in larger breeds, hip dysplasia can be seen in any breed at any age.

The standard diagnostic technique is x-ray, which is critical for visualizing osseous wear and tear. The causes of this condition may include genetic, environmental, and/or nutritional components. Treatment may include weight control and gentle exercise such as long walks to stimulate cartilage growth and help prevent muscle atrophy. Depending on the severity of this condition, medication m...

During the coldest days of winter, it is more difficult to keep your dog thin and active but don’t worry there are a few ways to exercise her. 

Here are a few tips that will keep your dog moving:

1. Walking outside can and should still happen during winter months but you must take a few things in consideration.

Here are some tips that will help:

- If you dog is shivering, looks weak or is lifting a paw this could mean she is cold. This is a good indication it is time to return home.

- Take more frequent but shorter walks.

- Dress your dog appropriately; and bring extra clothing to change her in case she gets wet. Booties are great if your dog tolerates them.

- Avoid going out early mornings or after sundown; during the coldest part of the day. 

2. Buy a treadmill and teach her how to walk on it.

There are many videos on YouTube that can show you how to do this and if that fails, you can bring in a dog trainer once or twice. That usually does the trick. Your dog will love it.

3. Play fe...

September 13, 2018

Once your animal has recovered from joint issues, you will want to keep her well. How often your dog or horse needs a chiropractor is dependent on the age, past health issues and activity level. 

Chiropractic adjustments when there is pain is more frequent, usually 1 per week. Once the pain and issues have resolved your animal has the opportunity to really see the benefits of wellness chiropractic care.Wellness care is not treating lameness or pain issues but rather improving and be proactive in preventing future issues such as degenerative arthritis and a myriad of health and performance problems.

If your horse or dog is involved in showing from dressage, eventing, jumping, hunting, agility, obedience, dock diving, fly-ball, and conformation then it is imperative that a program of wellness chiropractic care is utilized. By keeping the joints freely movable you will prevent nerve irritation, muscle soreness, loss of motion, and even many organ dysfunctions since all muscle input to the n...

Veterinary Chiropractic is the science, art and philosophy concerned with good health through

restoration and maintenance of a properly functioning neuromusculoskeletal system, without the use of drugs or surgery. It focuses on the biomechanical dysfunction of the spine and its effect on the entire nervous system throughout the body.

Veterinary Chiropractic care is a manual therapy, which can be used for many health and performance problems. 

Why? Nerves control everything that happens in your animals. Anything adversely affecting the nervous system will have detrimental effects that will resonate throughout the entire body. The command centers of the nervous system are the brain and spinal cord which are protected by the spine. The spine is a complex framework of bones (vertebra), ligaments, muscles and nerves. If the movement and biomechanics of the vertebra become dysfunctional, they can interfere with the performance of the nerves that are branching off of the spinal cord and going to...

August 9, 2018

Animal chiropractic care is becoming more popular with animal owners. Just like with humans, chiropractic care for animals allows them to get relief from joint and nerve pain without the use of medications. Because this is becoming more and more popular, you may be curious as to what traits a person should posses to be a good animal chiropractor.

Here are a few of the traits your animal chiropractor should have:

Must Love Animals

First and foremost, she must love animals. Most vets love their patients and treat them as if they were there own. Many pet owners consider pets to be their children. As such, they want a professional who will love and care for their pet in a kind and loving manner. 

Must Be Able to Remain Calm

Another key trait that she must have in order to work as an animal chiropractor is the ability to remain calm. Animals can sense if a person is nervous or unsure. And unfortunately, they can already be nervous or on edge when they are in an unfamiliar setting, such...

If you’re a new rabbit owner, you’re currently probably a combination of both elated and nervous. Elated, because your new pet is amazing, cute, and everything you’ve ever wanted in a furry friend. Nervous, because owning a rabbit is a big responsibility and you’re not totally sure about how to take care of your new pet yet. But don’t worry, we’ve got you covered! We’ll go over two of the more important aspects of basic rabbit care in order to help take some of the stress out of your first rabbit-owning experience. We hope you find this information helpful.

1) Housing

It’s important to make sure that your new rabbit has a comfortable home of their own within your household. Whether it’s a rabbit hutch in your backyard or a rabbit condo inside your house, make sure that your rabbit’s cage is large enough for them to hop around inside. Additionally, be aware of whether an indoor or outdoor environment is better for your rabbit. Some breeds do better indoors, and you should also take into c...

June 28, 2018

Every seasonal change brings in a handful allergies. Many people suffer from pollen allergies during the springtime causing sneezing, congestion and a runny nose which is why the month of May is National Asthma and Allergy Awareness Month. Likewise, your pets can be allergic to a lot of things, even without you really knowing about it. It is always important that you pay attention to their symptoms like they might be sneezing way too much or feeling a little lazier than usual.

Here are 10 things your pet could be allergic to, without you knowing about it. One of the most common signs that your pet might have an allergy is lots of scratching. Your pet might scratch themselves or rub against your furniture or wall; so look out for these times to all ensure your pet is healthy!

1. Fleas

Flea bite allergies are the most common allergies in the pet world. A simple flea bite can aggravate a wild reaction from the pet. It is important to make sure that your house is clear from fleas so that your...

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Benefits of animal chiropractic

We thought it was time for a reminder about the benefits of animal chiropractic. Animal chiropractic is a field of animal health care that focuses on the health of the neuro-musculo-skeletal system. Nerves control everything that happens in your animals, and anything affecting the nervous system will resonate throughout the entire body. This can interfere with the performance of the nerves branching off of the spinal cord, which transit to all of the muscles and organs. As this occurs, your animal can lose mobility; resulting in stiffness, tension, pain, and even organ dysfunction. Additionally, when normal movement is affected, it can impact your animal’s well-being and quality of life.

The goal of an animal chiropractor is to restore function and mobility to compromised spinal vertebra in an effort to re-establish neurologic communication. This allows the body to perform at its optimum potential. Animal chiropractors use their hands to identify areas of restriction and apply a precise thrust on the immobile vertebrae in an effort to restore motion and remove nerve interference. When nerves efficiently communicate with all the structures in your animals’ bodies, healing and recovery results.

Animal Chiropractic is not meant to replace traditional veterinary care. It is not an alternative treatment, but rather an integrative method that when used in conjunction with good traditional veterinary care, will provide years of healthy living. This is the beginning of a contemporary, comprehensive approach to your animal’s health care. It is an effective and valuable means of restoring and maintaining strength, vigor, and well-being. By exploring and treating the root causes of your animal’s aches, pains, and illnesses, you will ensure maximum improvement, top performance, and an exceptional quality of life for the animal companions we love.

Benefits of proper diet for horses

Owning a horse can be a very rewarding experience. Whether it’s for riding competitions or personal pleasure, horses can provide endless hours of joy. And although they are strong and magnificent animals, they can also be relatively fragile if not treated well. Diet plays an essential role in the health of the horse. Here are some of the benefits of providing your horse with a proper diet.

Behavioral Changes

Horses are known for their quiet, calm demeanor. When a normally tranquil horse suddenly becomes much more agitated, diet may be to blame.

Should you notice that your horse is acting strangely, see if there have been any large dietary changes of late. Intestinal distress may be causing the horse discomfort, and leading them to behave unusually.

If no dietary changes have taken place, it may be a musculoskeletal issue. A difference in posture or gait may be sure signs that there is a physical issue with your horse. If they resist being ridden or begin to buck, it may be time to consult with a specialist from the Options for Animals College of Animal Chiropractic. They will be able to diagnose and provide treatment that may alleviate the physical symptoms your horse is experiencing.

Prevents Arthritis

All mammals have a physiology that follows a similar blueprint; a skeletal structure that serves to protect vital organs while also acting as scaffolding for muscle tissue. The body of a horse contains a large amount of muscle around the hips, and it is this muscle that provides it with a majority of its strength and speed. However, much of this mass is situated on relatively thin ankle and knee joints, meaning that horses are often prone to bone breaks and diseases of the joints like arthritis.

One way to prevent such maladies is by not overfeeding a horse. A horse’s digestive tract is designed for near constant grazing, and a horse will eat with great frequency if allowed to do so. Therefore, it’s important to monitor how much a horse is fed in addition to any grazing it may do on its own. Frequent exercise will help ward off obesity, but the best defense against arthritis is to prevent overeating from the start. Should you find that your horse is suffering from joint and bone pain, consult with a specialist at the Options for Animals College of Animal Chiropractic.


The image of a paint horse galloping over the open plain or a thoroughbred competing in the Kentucky Derby have been frequently explored in art and literature. Horses are beautiful creatures, and it’s important to provide them with the proper diet in order to help maximize that beauty.

A balanced diet is the first step in making sure that your horse has a shiny, lustrous coat. Many horses with a dull coat have protein and zinc deficiencies. Make sure that when feeding your animal that you are providing them with important amino acids in addition to their normal carbohydrate intake.

Fats intake also play a key role in a horse’s appearance. Supplementing a horse’s diet with additional sources of essential fatty acids can yield positive results with regards to the shine of a horse’s coat. If it seems like your horse has a dull, bland coat, mixing additional sources of essential fatty acids in to their feed may be just what the doctor ordered.

56 Edourard Gagnon,

Gatineau, QC

 J9H 6X7

Riverside South Pet Shop

3771 Spratt Rd Unit 1, Ottawa, ON K1V 2P3

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Tel: 819-682-3285