Therapeutic Canine Massage

What is Therapeutic Canine Massage?

Therapeutic or Clinical Canine Massage is a non-invasive, drug free, powerful yet gentle hands on holistic therapy that works with the natural soft tissue structures of your dog’s body to help maintain optimum health and support muscular function.

This  remedial style massage  reduces pain and discomfort by  easing tight and sore muscles, tendons, ligaments and fascia. It  helps remove “knots” and adhesions that can be hindering your dog’s movement as well as releasing trigger points that cause referred pain. Therapeutic Canine Massage  can also  help rehabilitate soft tissue injuries  by breaking down and remodelling restricting scar tissue in the fibres that has been caused through surgery, trauma and/or repetitive strain resulting from daily activities, and which could be contributing to your dog’s discomfort.

Various techniques including Myofascial release, trigger point therapy, deep tissue massage and Swedish massage are used to gently work the soft tissue structures bringing relief and re-balance to your dog’s muscular system.

When would you use Therapeutic Canine Massage?

Your dog has around 700 muscles which attach via tendinous units to, on average, 320 bones. When contracted these muscles pull on the bones producing movement enabling your dog to run, jump and play. Muscle accounts for around 45% of your dog’s body weight so it is not surprising that with such a large muscular structure injury can easily occur and as a result movement is adversely affected.

Many injuries do not show up on x-ray or scans meaning they are difficult to diagnose and can go untreated for a long time.  Dogs have evolved from the wolf and in the wild they cannot show weakness as this literally could mean death. As such dogs have a fantastic ability to hide symptoms of injury such as pain or restriction by using compensating techniques. These mostly involve other muscles taking over or sharing the load of a joint movement which in turn can become compromised as they are over worked. It is often only after these compensating structures get weakened or damaged that an original injury becomes more apparent. Therapeutic massage can play a  significant role in resolving these soft tissue injuries and enabling a speedier recovery.

So things to watch out for in your dog are:

  • Limping or lameness
  • Avoiding use of a limb or favouring a limb
  • Stiffness after activity or rest
  • Performance issues – e.g. knocking poles in agility or coming out of the weaves
  • Unable to jump up onto the sofa or in and out of the car
  • Reluctance to go on walks
  • Slowing down
  • Difficulty going up and down stairs
  • Twitching down their backs
  • Nervousness, anxiety or touch shyness
  • Crying or yelping in pain
  • Difficulty in stretching
  • Mobility issues

In addition massage is excellent in supporting muscular rehabilitation after surgery or where orthopaedic conditions such as Hip Dysplasia, Luxating Patella or Spondylosis compromise the skeletal structure putting more demand on the muscular system.

As we already know in humans massage works on many levels so as well as supporting your dog’s physical body it has beneficial effects on the emotional and neurological aspects of your dog’s life, especially helping with stress and anxiety.

It’s always distressing seeing your pet uncomfortable, therefore, through the power of Therapeutic Canine Massage my aim is to improve the mobility and general health of your dog, whatever the breed, size or age.