Canine massage is very important to relieve the pain of the animal and allow it to relax. This alternative medicine promotes the well-being of the dog, but for it to be effective, it is essential to perform massages in the rules of the art. It is therefore recommended to contact a veterinarian specializing in canine physiotherapy. Let’s discover the benefits of massages for the dog, and see what are the points to respect if you want to massage your dog effectively when you are not a professional.
The many benefits of canine massage
This alternative medicine gives excellent results if it is practiced by a professional and the massage sessions are regularly scheduled. It is therefore better to entrust the canine massages to a physiotherapist for dogs so that the animal derives the greatest benefits, namely for example:
- Provide animal welfare,
- Relax your whole body,
- Calm your anxieties,
- Channel their behavior, especially if they are agitated, nervous, hyperactive or aggressive,
- Soften your skin,
- Relieve migraines, muscle, joint or digestive pain,
- Reduce bloating,
- Improve intestinal transit,
- Improve the mobility of a dog whose joints are stiff and / or painful,,
- Promote blood circulation and lymphatic circulation,
- Support your cardiovascular system,
- Strengthen the immune system …
During a massage, the animal physiotherapist may also discover a lump on palpation for example. This makes it possible to alert the treating veterinarian and consequently, to treat the animal as quickly as possible. However, we know that early treatment increases the chances of recovery.
Do not hesitate to have your dog massaged by a veterinarian, especially since it is an act reimbursed by pet health insurance. To benefit from this support, all you have to do is take out a contract with a dog mutual. Going through a online comparator, you can find in a few clicks the services included in the different formulas, the reimbursement rates and ceilings as well as the rates applied by the many specialized insurance companies.
Self-massage your dog, the principles to respect
Be careful not to triturate your dog despite common sense on the grounds of giving him a muscular massage to get him back on his feet. It is the opposite that must be done, because improper handling can amplify the pain already present in animals. here are the ground rules must be applied.
- Install the animal in a quiet place.
- Pat him on the head, neck, and then on his back so that he relaxes and feels confident.
- Encourage him to adopt the most suitable position, but also the most comfortable for him, depending on the part of his body that needs to be massaged. He can therefore be seated, lying on his stomach, on his back or on one side for example.
- Massage each part of the animal’s body using a very specific technique, namely:
- The back : make circular movements by placing the hands flat on each side of the spine, always starting from the neck and going down slowly to the tail.
- The head : gently massage your dog’s skull with your fingertips, making small circles down to the base of the neck without forgetting the back of the ears.
- The belly : this part of the body requires great attention because it is particularly sensitive. It is necessary to make circular movements more or less ample according to the size of the animal, with the palms of the hands and the thumbs but without pressing too hard.
- The paws : we must massage each leg one after the other, starting from the toes and going up towards the scapula for the front legs and towards the hip for the hind legs. Ideally, the dog is lying on its back. The teacher must adopt extremely gentle gestures so as not to create pain or discomfort.
- Always observe your dog in order to detect the slightest sign of nervousness, weariness, or even pain. The master must remain very focused throughout the massage session in order to be perfectly listening to his animal.
It is strongly recommended to take care, at the beginning, to give only short massages so that the dog gets used to it. This makes it possible to analyze their behavior, their level of satisfaction, their tolerance’s threshold and whether he really enjoys being massaged. Gradually, if the animal reacts well and seems to like it, the owner can significantly increase the duration of the sessions. But each time, it is important to be observant in order to detect the slightest reaction of pain, nervousness or weariness.
Always associate canine massage with talking
The master who wishes to perform some massages himself in order to relieve his faithful companion must have very specific objectives: the relief and well-being of his animal. So that the dog can take full advantage of his session and that it is profitable to him, he must be perfectly relaxed.
However, some dogs are less receptive, even more stressed or anxious than others, either by nature or because they are in physical pain and in the latter case, the anxiety of being touched leads to apprehension during contact because ‘they are afraid of being in pain. It is therefore fundamental to adopt a gentle gestures of course, but also of talk to your dog during the massage in order to reassure him. It is important for him to have confidence.
No matter the choice of words, it’s all about tone. We always address the animal with respect, and the intonation chosen must be calm, calm. We also adopt a moderate to slow speech rate so that the appeasement of the dog is total.
Finally, the benevolence is required, because let’s not forget that these animals have the strange faculty of perceiving it through the words of their master or their masseur. Likewise, the dog feels when his master is angry, which is common after a tiring day. If you want to give your ailing dog a massage, you should always take the time to relax beforehand in order to be perfectly prepared but also to relax your faithful companion. The ideal is to make a small walk with his dog and massage him on his return.