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Chiropractic Journal of Australia : CJA March 2012
19 Chiropractic Journal of Australia Volume 42 Number 1 March 2012 Dr Alex Hauler graduated as a veterinarian from the University of Melbourne in 1970. He then started into private practice which developed into an extensive involvement with the performance of racing greyhounds, particularly through adjusting their spines. He was a prime mover in establishing a post-graduate course in veterinary chiropractic at RMIT University in Melbourne, Australia in 1999. The 2 year Graduate Diploma, and 3 year Masters Degree were only available to qualifed, registered chiropractors, osteopaths and veterinarians.28 A 6-month post-graduate course of 210 hours in animal chiropractic was established at the Parker University College of Chiropractic in 2001. It is now a 6-month post-graduate program conducted in conjunction with Seneca College Faculty of Continuing Education and Training.29 It is beyond the scope of this paper to outline the range of conditions treated by spinal adjustments. Suffce to mention they range from behavioural problems, to musculoskeletal, neurological, dermal and some internal conditions. They are however listed in published papers30, and appear on various websites.31-37 Apart from the more usual musculoskeletal conditions one would expect to be addressed, the veterinarian chiropractor Willoughby lists in her textbook examples of conditions treated “following unsuccessful conventional procedures.” 38 Malaise and decline Alopecia Behavioural problems such as aggression Delayed healing Granulomas30,38 Pruritis39 [Interestingly, a recent neurological discovery found that in rats, there is a specifc spinal cord tract for the sensation of ‘itching’ in a similar structure as there is for pressure, proprioception, pain and temperature for example.] In his series of texts Kamen40-42 outlined a range of conditions of domestic animals that he found over the years which had responded to spinal adjustments. In 1980, Medford listed a wide variety of conditions that he had apparently successfully resolved with spinal adjustments.20 These include: Cataracts Chorea Eczema Lumpy jaw Malabsorption/malnutrition Polyuria Rot hoof Sterility Swollen fetlock Some critics of chiropractic claim that its benefts are primarily derived from the placebo effect.43 Ernst suggests that non- ANIMAL CHIROPRACTIC -- HISTORICAL PERSPECTIVE ROME medical health practitioners are able to harness this better than medical doctors.44 One wonders if this claim applies to those medical doctors who employ spinal manipulation. However, with such a demand for chiropractic spinal care for animals and case record foundation - albeit anecdotal at this stage, such a claim can be emphatically dismissed. CONCLUSION The interest in animal chiropractic appears to have been slow in developing in the early years, but after that slow start, it seems to have burgeoned in recent years. It is reasonable to conclude that the spinal adjustments of vertebrates appear to produce quite extraordinary outcomes in some cases. It is unfortunate that more detailed case reports have not been recorded, and that more in depth formal studies have not been published. The nature of the reports with vertebrates as patients over so many decades would indicate a defnite absence of any placebo effect. The long history of chiropractic involvement with animal health through spinal care, and the more recent collaboration and cooperation with veterinarians, has lead to this natural and logical evolution of veterinary chiropractic. "In horse racing, chiropractic care has become a staple for many of the stables and tracks around the country." -- Browning 45 ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS The author would like to thank Dr Rolf Peters for his guidance in the preparation of, and in obtaining valuable reference material for this paper. His co-operation and input is sincerely appreciated. REFERENCES 1. Homewood AE. Some history of chiropractic veterinary medicine/ Dig Chiropr Econ 1980;23(1):120-1. 2. Palmer DD. Chiropractic good for horses. The Chiropr. 1899;26:3. (Also cited by Browning D. Animal chiropractic: the new family practice. ICA Rev 2007;63(3):29-35.14). 3. Anon. D.D. the vet? Chiropr Hist. 1991;11(1):7. 4. Palmer DD. The chiropractor’s adjuster. Portland Oregon. Portland Printing House Co. 1910;830. 5. Palmer BJ. CD Rom. (Thought to be a Palmer Lyceum, Davenport, Iowa.) Circa 1949. 6. Palmer BJ. Chiropractic for animals. Fountain Head News. 1918;7(31):1. 7. Kinney CD. More info on adjusting other animals than humans. Fountain Head News. 1921;10(50):12. 8. Firth JN. A textbook on symptomatology or the manifestation of incoordination considered from a chiropractic standpoint. 2nd ed. Davenport. Self published. Vol VII;6. 9. Dean CL. More info on adjusting other animals than humans. Fountain Head News. 1921;10(50):12. 10. Anon. Veterinary chiropractic. J Am Med Assoc. 1921;77(12):944. 11. Old Shoes. (sic) A veterinary chiropractor. Fountain Head News. 1921;11(10):7-8. (Citing a news clipping – no details stated). 12. Anon. Chiropractors hereby warned to quit adjusting mules, cows and dogs. Positively it won’t do, says the Journal of the AMA. Fountain Head News 1921;11(10). (Citing JAMA 1921;77(12):944.)
CJA June 2012