It’s official. I’m a Certified Animal Chiropractor.

It’s never an easy decision to go back to school and learn something new.  With a full time career, this means a huge time commitment away from family.  Having said that, I had gotten to a point in my career that had been leaving me with the feeling that there was more that I could do to make my patients more comfortable, more than what I had learned in vet school.

Over the years Dr. Woodcock had provided chiropractic care for our patients, when she came in I would ask questions, but never fully understood chiropractic treatment, what it does and why.  I personally have been seeing a chiropractor for several years and certainly enjoy the benefits.  The Canadian Animal Chiropractic Certification Program opened my eyes to a whole new world.  I don’t think I will ever look at pets the same.

Learning animal chiropractic medicine was like learning a different language.  Muscles, nerves and joints that I haven’t thought twice about since my first year anatomy course, now have a whole new significance.  I was now being asked to visualize the joint angles in the spine and to make a connection to what muscles down in the lower leg might be affected if there was an abnormality up in the spinal joints.  With the use of this new found knowledge and skillset I could see how chiropractic adjustments restore proper motion in a joint which in turn allows better nerve health, muscle health, range of motion and decreases pain.

In the course, we needed to do a case study, so I decided to put it to the test on my very own beloved Mackenzie.  For those that haven’t heard me speak of Kenzie, she is an 8 year old lab cross that I rescued at 3 weeks of age.  A few years ago, she had some major medical issues which meant that Kenzie is on A LOT of medications.  One of which, is for urinary incontinence which started about a year and a half ago.  I adjusted Kenzie monthly for 5 months as I learned the different techniques.  By the 5th month (once I was familiar with the lower spine and hip adjustments), she was able to come off the incontinence medication and hasn’t leaked any urine since!!  As an added bonus, her anal glands no longer bug her or require emptying, she is much more agile and better at jumping up on to the couch for her nap and into the car.  Overall Kenzie is much more comfortable in the hind end.

I am so excited to have finished this course, and proud to join the ranks of certified animal chiropractors.  I look forward to making a great difference in many pets lives.

Dr. Ilana Smolkin

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