Open Heart, Healing Touch: How Massage can Benefit your Pet
Jan 28, 2012 08:06PM
● By Shirley De la Torre
Dog and cat massage has so many physical and psychological benefits for your pet that you could almost call it an essential of health care.
Massage has been an ancient healing art for millennia, but it’s only been in the last few decades that some veterinarians are acknowledging the benefits of massage for their patients. Thankfully, that number is growing.
There are many different types of canine massage – just as there are different types of massage for humans. Depending on the need, a dog can benefit from the numerous types of healing touch such as deep tissue massage for example. The technique best suited to support traditional veterinary practices is a gentle relaxation massage. This touch is calming, nurturing, and intuitive.
Animals know us by the energy we project. This is especially so in massage. Therapists may utilize reiki energy incorporated with the massage as it helps them to intuit where a patient might be experiencing pain or blocked energy. It also is a gentle way to “introduce one’s self” to the patient. Animals are so open to hear us – the key is quieting our minds and allowing ourselves to hear them.
In The Art of Massage the author, John Kellogg, M.D., states "Massage is the manipulation of muscles and skin to promote increased circulation to all organs and tissues in the body.” In The Healing Touch by Michael Fox, D.V.M., he states “Dog and cat massage has so many physical and psychological benefits for your pet that you could almost call it an essential of health care, like grooming, feeding, and exercise.” And, lastly, in Four Paws, Five Directions, Cheryl Schwartz, D.V.M., says “Massage is the touch of the physical and energetic body with a healing purpose. Therapeutic massage is recognized as one of the primary forms of ‘hands-on-healing’ the world over.”
Massage increases circulation which relieves pain, reduces edema and removes lactic acid build-up in the muscles. Additional physical benefits of massage include: improves lymphatic movement, boosts immune system functions, increases joint flexibility and range of motion. In short, massage compliments veterinary treatments. The emotional and psychological benefits include calming, easing stress, helping with separation anxiety, trust and aggression issues, grief, fear and trauma. The etheric body also benefits, as massage will remove blocked energy, help their chi to flow easily and ground the animal’s energy.
Shirley De la Torre, Canine Therapeutic Massage Practitioner and Level 2 Animal Reiki Practitioner practices at Cocoa Village Animal Wellness Center in Cocoa with Dr. Donna Ragona. For more information and appointments call 321-684-7060.