Basic Doggie Massage Techniques

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Do you think your pooch appears edgy and taut lately? Maybe even kind of cranky? If so, why don’t you give him a relaxing massage? This way, you can help your dog release the negative energy and pent up stress that’s been making him uptight and agitated.

What Massage Can Do

With the help of a qualified massage therapist, your pooch can gain various body benefits such as enhanced flexibility, reduced pain, increased circulation, calmness, and an overall sense of wellness.

Massage needs to be a relaxing and gentle activity for Fido. Before you start, ensure that your pooch is in a comfortable and serene place. Avoid forcing your dog to be massaged. To receive the most benefit from the kneading experience he’ll need to be cooperative and relaxed.

Never try to massage a lump in your pet or when he has fever or infection.

Home Massage Techniques

1. Effleurage.

This kind of massage makes use of gentle, long relaxing strokes that helps in warming your dog’s body tissues. The extent of pressure applied is normally just about five grams to one pound. This is an extremely light touch where one of your hands is on the animal at all times, and the other slowly slides down over his head, face, body, outside part of the legs, and tail. Just see to it that you go according to the direction of your dog’s hair growth.

After this, you stroke up your dog’s inside legs slowly against the direction of his hair growth. While the hand-over-hand effleurage starts a stroke with one hand as the other ends, centripetal effleurage uses a circular motion toward the animal’s heart.

2. Passive touch.

This type of massage is done without applying any pressure. Here, your hand is held on a single muscle group only. One hand is placed on the head, shoulder, alongside, or on the thigh and hip parts of the animal. This is performed for a few moments, and eventually the activity will result in making your pet feel calmer and relieving him from some pain. Fido will surely feel better by this soothing weightless touch.

Each of these techniques should only be used three times every massage session. Parts with infection, bony areas, lumps and open wounds should never be manipulated.

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When I adopted my shepherd mix, Molly, from a local shelter 12 years ago, I had no idea the impact she would have on my life. Through Molly, I've learned to be more patient, experienced unconditional love, been alerted to the mailman and every squirrel within a block radius of the house, and ingested enough fur to build 3 or 4 more dogs! When I lost Molly to cancer just a few months ago, I adopted Olive, a 13 week old Golden Retriever. Together, we smile at least a hundred times a day!


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  3. My Roxy loves her massage! She looks SO much like the doggie in the picture. What kind of dog is it? We adopted Roxy and would love to know more about the breed(s) that make up our awesome pooch!

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