Massages can be just as helpful to animals as they are to humans! Dog massage is an exciting prospect. After learning a few simple techniques, you can easily improve your dog’s health, well-being, and overall quality of life.
Benefits of Dog Massage
Massages have many potential benefits for your pup’s health. It can soothe your dog’s nerves and may be especially helpful after a stressful event- like a long car ride. Massages can also help you bond with your dog. When you think he needs extra attention, or when he’s recovering from an injury, massages work wonders.
In addition to these general benefits, massages have potential medical benefits. Here are a few massage benefits:
- Helps strained muscles heal faster
- Reduces pain and swelling
- Relieves muscle tension and stiffness
- Decreases blood pressure
- Improves blood circulation and movement of lymphatic fluid
- Strengthens the immune system
- Stimulates liver and kidney function
- Improves joint flexibility
- Improves balance
- Reduces fatigue and stiffness after exercise
Even if your dog seems totally healthy, a massage will make him feel better!
How to Give Your Dog a Massage
To get your dog accustomed to being massaged, you should use very gentle motions. You’ll also want to choose a time when he is relaxed, and in a calm environment.
To help your dog relax, there are a few places to focus on. If you rub his chest and where his head and neck join, then you’ll be stimulating important spots in his nervous system.
A Daily Dog Massage
There are a few different kinds of massage. If you are planning on daily massages, a gentle all-over type might do the trick. With a flat palm, rub in circles all over your dog’s body. Keep this up for 10 minutes for a relaxing, soothing session.
A Calming and Soothing Massage
Lightly rest your hand on the top of his head, and use long strokes down his spine ending at his tail. You can gradually increase the pressure as you go. When you’re ready to stop, rest one hand at the base of his head and the other on his pelvis. This move is good for calming and soothing your dog when he’s nervous.
A Dog Massage for Stiff or Sore Joints
To help your dog feel better when he has stiff or sore joints, try this: pet the area around the problematic joint to warm it up. Then, press and release the area rhythmically. This helps to allow more fluid to circulate in the area and to relieve pressure on the joint. Finish with more calming pets.
The benefits of massage are seemingly endless. By massaging your dog, you’ll not only be helping him feel better, but you’ll also be more tuned into his physical state. Being more aware of what’s normal to him, you will be quick to find problems like swollen muscles, tight skin, or coat changes.