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  • Pet Massage!!

    2 posts, 2 voices, 1254 views, started Sep 17, 2008

    Posted on Wednesday, September 17, 2008 by Petstylist007

    •  



    • Amethyst
      Offline

      Pet Massage, rub rover the right way!!

      Dog Massage, the gentle art of taming the wild beast.  

      Lets face it massage just feels good to everyone, including dogs. As a licensed human massage therapist and a certified pet massage therapist I have learned that touch therapy goes a long way with keeping pets calm during the actual hair cut phase of grooming.
      When done properly, massage relaxes hypertonic (tight) muscles, provides a feeling of emotional comfort, and improves blood circulation. Having adequate blood circulation is essential, because it is the blood stream that provides a fresh supply of oxygen and nutrients to the surrounding tissues of the body. Massage can break down adhesions (knots) and promote healing after muscle exertion and fatigue. It can reduce anxiety and increase mobility. These benefits apply to not only humans, but also extend to our four-footed friends. Pet massage is now recognized as not only being calming for a cat or dog, but it is excellent relaxation therapy for the human providing the massage as well.
      Dogs are very touch oriented creatures. How you handle them determines how they associate you with a positive experience.

      Always start out with a compassionate intention. The energy you put out will relay directly to the dog when you place your hands on it. Be in a good mood, calm and quiet and intend to touch the animal to make it feel good. Slow and steady strokes, gentle pressure and allowing the dog to relax will make your session go much more smoothly.
      Gentle massaging touch can be done when you are bathing your dog. The dog is wet and their coat is slick, promoting an easy environment for you to give them a little extra attention.
      Don't massage the dog when it still has shampoo on it's coat. This can cause irritation to the skin by working the shampoo too deeply into their coat. Massage when you have conditioner on the coat. Aromatherapy conditioners work great during this time, as the gentle scent of calming herbs works the dogs olfactory nerves (in the dogs nose) into a relaxed and calm state. Thus sending calming signals to the muscles in the body and the brain. This works two fold. It allows some extra conditioning time and it also will push the conditioner through the coat and nourish the skin and hair follicles deep under the dogs coat.  You can also just massage while your pet is in a calm submissive state (not hyper or excited, but resting with you and being even tempered) while sitting on the floor with them. Get a nice big cozy blanket and spread it out, have your pooch lay down or sit on it with you and then gently begin to massage their face.

      Start with gentle soothing strokes using the palms of your hands. Run your hands over the dogs entire body slowly using gentle pressure around the joint areas to release any tension. Work your way down each leg to the foot and get your fingers between their toes and pads and give a soft pinch to the webbing. There are pressure points there that will release endorphins (relaxing euphoric brain neurotransmitters) to help calm the pet.
      Dogs faces have many muscles, so massaging them will also create
      feelings of well being and relaxation. Start with the ears and gently massage them between your fingertips. Using a circular motion roll the ear leather between your fingers starting at the base of the ear and work your way out to the tips. Come around to the dogs face and with your thumbs work in small circles massaging around the eyes, over the brow bone and down the nose to the mouth. Gentle pressure on the brow bone and down the nose can alleviate breathing issues and also greatly reduce stress by massaging these pressure points.
      Working with downward strokes to the neck and chest area, apply the palms of your hands with your thumbs stroking the muscles down toward the breast bone. Gentle is the key, so keep your pressure to a minimum. Never squeeze or press hard. Slowly work your way to the underbelly with soft kneading motions (like rolling dough) until you get to the back of the dog. The dogs tail muscles get a mighty work out and a little attention to their tail will make a pooch smile. Grasp the base of the tail gently with the palm of your hand wrapping your fingers up over the top section of the tail. Slowly give a soft wringing motion. Don't twist hard, just a gentle little pull as you move your hand around the tail. Work your fingers over the tail flexing and rotating it gently. If the dog has a docked tail, just use a few fingers instead of your whole hand to achieve the same effect.
      Now give the dog a few soothing strokes from the palms of your hands from head to toe. Just like you are petting it but with a little more pressure.

      When massaging keep your voice soft and soothing. Don't speak to the dog in an excited tone, since you are working on calming the animal. If at any time to dog doesn't let you touch a part of it's body, just respect that and move on, everyone has issues with some body parts and dogs are no different. If you feel anything abnormal, like lumps, bumps, scabs or sores, make a mental note to check it after the massage and notify your vet of any findings.  If the dog yelps or indicates pain in any area, don't continue with that area. Just make a notation that there is soreness in that spot and again notify  the Vet. This is an excellent way for you to get a good hands on look and feel of  your dogs overall condition, and it enables you to point out any potential problems that you may not have been aware of.
      That's it. Massage has many benefits for the pet, which by performing this wonderful bonding experience, you can pass along the calming benefits to your self as well. Did you know that massaging your dog, will release the essential oils in their skin and coat, making it shine and have that healthy glow.
      As in the case of human massage, there are contraindications for pet massage, which include, but are not limited to: infection, open cuts, burns, inflammation, brittle bones, pregnancy, recent surgery, and serious health conditions. If you doubt the safety of a particular movement, do not perform it. It is often best if you consult with your Vet before beginning a massage on your pet.
      ~Malissa Diener LMT, CPMT, Poochini Pet Salon
      Interested in learning pet massage? Check out these books at your local library or book seller.
      Canine Massage: A Complete Reference Manual by Jean-Pierre Hourdebaigt
      The Well-Connected Dog: A Guide to Canine Acupressure by Amy Snow
      Canine Massage : The Workbook by Patricia Whalen-Shaw and Mickey Young

      (C)Pet Massage, rub rover the right way!!

      Dog Massage, the gentle art of taming the wild beast.  

      Lets face it massage just feels good to everyone, including dogs. As a licensed human massage therapist and a certified pet massage therapist I have learned that touch therapy goes a long way with keeping pets calm during the actual hair cut phase of grooming.
      When done properly, massage relaxes hypertonic (tight) muscles, provides a feeling of emotional comfort, and improves blood circulation. Having adequate blood circulation is essential, because it is the blood stream that provides a fresh supply of oxygen and nutrients to the surrounding tissues of the body. Massage can break down adhesions (knots) and promote healing after muscle exertion and fatigue. It can reduce anxiety and increase mobility. These benefits apply to not only humans, but also extend to our four-footed friends. Pet massage is now recognized as not only being calming for a cat or dog, but it is excellent relaxation therapy for the human providing the massage as well.
      Dogs are very touch oriented creatures. How you handle them determines how they associate you with a positive experience.

      Always start out with a compassionate intention. The energy you put out will relay directly to the dog when you place your hands on it. Be in a good mood, calm and quiet and intend to touch the animal to make it feel good. Slow and steady strokes, gentle pressure and allowing the dog to relax will make your session go much more smoothly.
      Gentle massaging touch can be done when you are bathing your dog. The dog is wet and their coat is slick, promoting an easy environment for you to give them a little extra attention.
      Don't massage the dog when it still has shampoo on it's coat. This can cause irritation to the skin by working the shampoo too deeply into their coat. Massage when you have conditioner on the coat. Aromatherapy conditioners work great during this time, as the gentle scent of calming herbs works the dogs olfactory nerves (in the dogs nose) into a relaxed and calm state. Thus sending calming signals to the muscles in the body and the brain. This works two fold. It allows some extra conditioning time and it also will push the conditioner through the coat and nourish the skin and hair follicles deep under the dogs coat.  You can also just massage while your pet is in a calm submissive state (not hyper or excited, but resting with you and being even tempered) while sitting on the floor with them. Get a nice big cozy blanket and spread it out, have your pooch lay down or sit on it with you and then gently begin to massage their face.

      Start with gentle soothing strokes using the palms of your hands. Run your hands over the dogs entire body slowly using gentle pressure around the joint areas to release any tension. Work your way down each leg to the foot and get your fingers between their toes and pads and give a soft pinch to the webbing. There are pressure points there that will release endorphins (relaxing euphoric brain neurotransmitters) to help calm the pet.
      Dogs faces have many muscles, so massaging them will also create
      feelings of well being and relaxation. Start with the ears and gently massage them between your fingertips. Using a circular motion roll the ear leather between your fingers starting at the base of the ear and work your way out to the tips. Come around to the dogs face and with your thumbs work in small circles massaging around the eyes, over the brow bone and down the nose to the mouth. Gentle pressure on the brow bone and down the nose can alleviate breathing issues and also greatly reduce stress by massaging these pressure points.
      Working with downward strokes to the neck and chest area, apply the palms of your hands with your thumbs stroking the muscles down toward the breast bone. Gentle is the key, so keep your pressure to a minimum. Never squeeze or press hard. Slowly work your way to the underbelly with soft kneading motions (like rolling dough) until you get to the back of the dog. The dogs tail muscles get a mighty work out and a little attention to their tail will make a pooch smile. Grasp the base of the tail gently with the palm of your hand wrapping your fingers up over the top section of the tail. Slowly give a soft wringing motion. Don't twist hard, just a gentle little pull as you move your hand around the tail. Work your fingers over the tail flexing and rotating it gently. If the dog has a docked tail, just use a few fingers instead of your whole hand to achieve the same effect.
      Now give the dog a few soothing strokes from the palms of your hands from head to toe. Just like you are petting it but with a little more pressure.

      When massaging keep your voice soft and soothing. Don't speak to the dog in an excited tone, since you are working on calming the animal. If at any time to dog doesn't let you touch a part of it's body, just respect that and move on, everyone has issues with some body parts and dogs are no different. If you feel anything abnormal, like lumps, bumps, scabs or sores, make a mental note to check it after the massage and notify your vet of any findings.  If the dog yelps or indicates pain in any area, don't continue with that area. Just make a notation that there is soreness in that spot and again notify  the Vet. This is an excellent way for you to get a good hands on look and feel of  your dogs overall condition, and it enables you to point out any potential problems that you may not have been aware of.
      That's it. Massage has many benefits for the pet, which by performing this wonderful bonding experience, you can pass along the calming benefits to your self as well. Did you know that massaging your dog, will release the essential oils in their skin and coat, making it shine and have that healthy glow.
      As in the case of human massage, there are contraindications for pet massage, which include, but are not limited to: infection, open cuts, burns, inflammation, brittle bones, pregnancy, recent surgery, and serious health conditions. If you doubt the safety of a particular movement, do not perform it. It is often best if you consult with your Vet before beginning a massage on your pet.
      ~Malissa Diener LMT, CPMT, Poochini Pet Salon
      Interested in learning pet massage? Check out these books at your local library or book seller.
      Canine Massage: A Complete Reference Manual by Jean-Pierre Hourdebaigt
      The Well-Connected Dog: A Guide to Canine Acupressure by Amy Snow
      Canine Massage : The Workbook by Patricia Whalen-Shaw and Mickey Young



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