Canine Massage Therapy being incorporated into the pool.
Massage therapy is a wonderful way to help dogs. Hydrotherapy and massage therapy aids with circulation, relieves muscle tightness and spasms, reduces anxiety, increased oxygen to the muscles, aids in lymphatic draining, reduces pain and allows for greater range of motion.
The therapist targets affected tissues such as muscles, tendons, scar tissue and lymph nodes in injured, post-surgical and arthritic dogs aiding in the healing process and the wellbeing of the dog. Massage may be applied in the pool to the area of injury and other areas of the dog may also need attention such as the muscles that are compensating for an injury or condition. An example of a compensating area would be to massage the overused pectoral (chest) and cervical and thoracic muscles of the neck and shoulders of a forelimb lame dog.
Regular massage treatments bring about significant improvements particularly with pain relief, increased mobility, reduced tension and help to sedate the nervous system and release endorphins to aid healing.
Canine massage therapy is a field where certification is required as the therapist needs to be educated in knowing when there is a contradiction to massage, understanding of canine anatomy and the use of proper massage stokes and treatment.
Adding massage therapy to the pool therapy is an excellent way to compliment both treatments. Taking breaks during laps and adding in stretching & massage therapy increases the rate of recovery substantially.
Ms. A. McDonald Dip CH, SARMT
- Diploma in Canine Hydrotherapy from Greyfriars UK www.greyfriarsrehab.co.uk
- First Aid for Small Animals from Greyfriars UK.
- Certificate in Small Animal Foundation Massage Therapy (level 1) from North West School of Animal Massage www.nwsam.com
- Certificate in Small Animal Rehabilitation Massage Therapy (level 3) from North West School of Animal Massage www.nwsam.com
- Walked Paws Dog Walking 101 – Business and Equipment Module And Sabrina’s link is www.shakeapaw.dog