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How can I tell if my animal needs treatment?

Often a mechanical problem has some repercussions on the animal’s health and/or performance by its action on the animal’s breathing, fluid mechanic (blood, and lymph) and digestive system, and this in turn can affect the animal’s mood and sensitivity. Although not lame the animal ‘isn’t quite right’, or it shows some level of discomfort and aggression. (Since 1998 I haven’t yet met a horse that is nasty, it has always been due to some discomfort somewhere and a miscommunication with us).

Below is a list of reasons why osteopathic treatment may be the way forward with your horse and the sooner appropriate treatment is given, the sooner the problem may be resolved:

Injuries: Articulation or soft tissue injury, in conjunction with your veterinary surgeon, post operative/treatment (shock wave, ultra-sounds, nerves’ block, cortison injections), after a competition stiffness,...

Behaviours on the ground: Sensitive when girthed, unable to stand still, not liking to be boxed , hypersensitivity to brushing, being difficult to shoe, bucking/ rearing/ rolling(or not), not putting weight according to feeding...

Behaviours when riden: Not developing muscles in correlation with the work done, ‘cold back’ at first, resists work, reluctance to stride out, poor impulsion, can’t collect, rushes into jumps or work, only one speed, not tracking up, resisting on one rein or just a on one rein, refusing to jump, resisting/ faltering at transitions...

Other signs: Lameness, tail swishing, tail to one side, head turn to one side, not bending smoothly or evenly, friction rubs, temporary swellings ...


  • Acute soft tissue injury
  • Post operative
  • Chronic articulation condition post operative or traumatic
  • Reduction of comfort, reduction of quality at work (greyhounds, working dogs, agility dogs)

Sometimes a course of several treatments is needed; other times simply an 'MOT' to check that the musculo-skeletal system is working optimally for the dog to do the work required.  Dogs respond readily to osteopathic care and it often looks like we are not doing much at all as being very supple they require often the most subtle technique (cranial & functional osteopathy).
If you would like me to treat your animal, please ask your veterinary surgeon for a referral.  Most vets are happy to refer. 

© Copyright Christophe Becquereau 2010