The lameness exam provides a baseline on your horse's movement and includes several phases.
First, we watch your horse free lunge in our roundpen. This allows us to observe stride length, how the horse takes canter leads and many other things that can indicate soreness.
Second, we move onto the hill that shows how your horse is loading its hind legs.
Third, we trot your horse down the parking lot and do flexion tests on all four legs.
Finally, we do some tight circles and figure eights, backing and lunging in a small circle on a hard surface.
Each of these phases helps Dr. Emery evaluate the soundness of the horse and determine what route of treatment to pursue. It also establishes a baseline for future visits.
A chiropractic treatment is included with the IPE. After the lameness exam, Dr. Emery adjusts the horse as he evaluates. He will do neck bends to help determine the flexibility of the neck and adjust accordingly. He will also maipulate the legs and adjust where needed. Many horses become locked in their knees and shoulders as well as their spine. Most horses like these adjustments and show us by licking and chewing.
Remember... chiropractic is not "putting bones back in place". Chiropractic is moving each joint through its normal range of motion. The spinal column is made up of many joints that should allow motion. Chiropractors diagnose and treat subluxations, which are joints that are not performing efficiently or effectively. For more detailed information on chiropractic care, please visit our chiropractic page.
Acupuncture was developed thousands of years ago by the Chinese. It revolves around using certain points along meridians on the horse's body to detect areas of energy deficiency or excess. Dr. Emery goes over the horse checking the "map" along the horse's neck and back to feel for these areas. The horse normally reacts by flinching in certain spots. This indicates to Dr. Emery where the horse is having problems. For example, certain points on the back and rump point to hock problems.
After Dr. Emery establishes what he needs to treat, he puts needles in the horse and injects B12. B12 helps stimulate the acupuncture point. With the needles in place and prick certain points on the feet, known as ting points. This helps balance the deficient and excessive areas.
The foot evaluation is going on during the whole exam. It starts by looking at the feet statically to check. While the horse is in motion, the way the foot looks in flight and when it hits the ground is noted. The horse is trotted on a small cirlce on a hard surface. This shows pain in feet quite well, usually showing up as a head nod. Digital hoof testers are used to evaluate how much pressure the hoof can withstand. The lower the number the more sensitive (positive) the foot is. If any abnormalities are noted during the exam the KrossCheck leveraging device will be used to help narrow things down. The KrossCheck basically askes the horse where it likes or dislikes areas wedged. This can help determine shoeing possibilities for different issues.
Beadle Lake Large Animal Clinic 7115 Tower Road Battle Creek, MI 49014 Hours: Monday and Friday 8AM to 5PM; Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday 8 AM to 4PM; Saturday 8AM to 12PM 269-441-9233 email@example.com