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Thank you notes that make us proud of our students

On a semi regular basis, our graduates reach out to us to let us know how we helped them in their personal and professional lives.

You might think their gratitude was more for having a life they love, which often happens. Gratitude is the one method we all can use to make our lives better. When we are grateful, life changes because we change.

When we are publicly grateful to someone or for something, we change how we must act in front of others to prove that gratitude. And that changes others as well. Receiving gratitude from graduates and students affects how we run the Animal Chiropractic 101 program at A.C.E.S.

There is one message Dr. O and I receive at least once a year, sometimes more often, from doctors who graduated often several years before that makes us have a certain amount of pride in our own teaching.

This particular message usually comes from our veterinary graduates. And it is about safety.

Safety is our number one training that counts in many ways. It counts in exams, in the final exam, and for the AVCA exam as well.

But where it counts even more is in real life. Doctors who practice safety during class over and over and over, make it a habit, so that when it is necessary, it is already in place.

When we teach doctors to put their head ON the dog in certain positions, it is essential that they embrace this. Some doctors have a fear of putting their head on the dog. Perhaps they fear getting fleas? Yet this is one of the safest places to be if a dog reacts to an adjustment, or any other treatment.

Hey I just have to thank you. Not only did I learn everything about chiro from you and Dr. O, I also learned how to position myself to not get bit in the face by a patient. No one ever taught me that in vet school. And now twice in my career, you guys teaching me to just turn my head the other way has saved me from being bit in the face. Last week an adult male Akita would have gotten me full on in the face when I listened to his heart if it hadn't been for your teaching. Thank you!! (Dr. Laura Liane)

These letters of gratitude help us to hold firm our dedication to training doctors to be efficient, effective and safe no matter what species they are handling.

Doctors are often more familiar with handling small animals such as dogs and cats. When it comes to larger breed dogs or horses, it seems more obvious that developing safe habits is essential. However, even smaller animals can use all their weapons, teeth and claws, to make adjusting them more dangerous. Yet they are generally responding to discomfort that was present even before the doctor arrived.

Animals with less human contact, or owners who are not good at creating confidence in their animals, can be more dangerous. Animals are observant and when their owners are nervous about a treatment, so too are they.

Sometimes it is best to have the owner step away from the treatment area, to allow the animal to relax and be better behaved.

When doctors attend Lab 1, one of the first things we do is train them in safe handling and the importance of having a competent handler to assist them. In our effort to help animal chiropractors have a safe, successful practice, we encourage them to hire and train an assistant.

Animal Chiropractic Assistants are trained to do many things to help the doctor care for more patients more efficiently. Among those things is handling the animal being treated.

Having someone you trust holding the leash or lead rope can make the difference between a great day at work and a disaster.

If you are an animal chiropractor, hire an Animal Chiropractic Assistant. Consider having them take the Animal Chiropractic Assistant program at A.C.E.S. It could be a game changer for your practice, and may one day save your life.

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