Massage techniques to use on your dog

Good Evening Everyone,

I love a great massage, and it’s no surprise that our doggies also can enjoy and benefit from massage. Our vet, Dr. Maria, who treats Roxie with chiropractic adjustments recommended massage as a supplemental form of therapy for Roxie’s back. So, both Roxie and Gypsy get a weekly massage. They know it is massage time when a certain blanket gets pulled out to the middle of the living room floor. Gypsy always goes first, and she has been known to ask for a second session after Roxie is done, by plopping herself down on the blanket again and giving me that sad, puppy-dog look.

Dr. Andrew Jones, a holistic vet from Canada I’ve mentioned in other posts, published some massage techniques to use on dogs.
Dr. Jones massage regimen:

HEALING TOUCH. Massage can be a great way to relieve some of the discomfort of arthritis. Using your fingertips, rub firm circles into the muscle. Then progress to using the palm of your hand. Doing this daily will increase blood flow and help ease your pet’s pain.

Daily Head to Toe Massage:

1.Use oil – sesame or baby oil.

2.Start at the tail. Firmly squeeze from base of the tail to the tip.

3.Rub the back of the neck, behind the ears with your forefingers.

4.With your pet facing you, hold your pets head in your hands, holding them by the cheeks under the ears and rock their head from side to side.

5.Move to an ear massage, starting at the base, finish by using your thumb and forefinger to massage the tip.

6.Massage the tissue around your pet’s eyes with your thumb, and stroke your forefinger down the nose.

7.Gently pinch your dog’s cheeks and lips several times and finally stroke the throat and chin.

8.Straddle your pet facing forward (standing over him): move your hands under the armpits and rub gently. Allow your hands to slide from the armpits to the forelegs.

9.Slide your hands down the forelegs (like you did for the tail) with a soft but firm grip all the way down to the paws.

10.Gently hold the paws (one at a time) and squeeze gently for a few seconds. Repeat this procedure, starting with the chest, 2 – 3 times.

11.Still standing over your pet (facing forward), massage the length of your pet’s back from the his neck all along his spine to his tail.

12.Turn the opposite direction and massage your pet’s rear, sliding your hands down the hind legs and massaging down to the paws. (Just as you did for the forelegs.)

Here is a link to a series of youtube videos demonstrating dog massage.

If you want more info regarding dog massage, this is a reference that I use: The Healing Touch for Dogs by Dr. Michael W. Fox.

If you decide to try massage on your dog, I’d love to hear about it.


Aug 05, 2009 | 0 | Holistic, Home Health Care for Dogs

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