Massage – When You Should and Shouldn’t Massage Your Pet

Have you ever thought about giving your pet a massage? Just as with humans, pets can enjoy a number of great benefits from receiving a massage. At the same time, there are certain situations when a massage is not the appropriate course of action. Therefore, it is important for you to understand the benefits of massage as well as when massage is not appropriate.

Massage - When You Should and Shouldn't Massage Your Pet

Exploring the Benefits of Massage

Even if your pet is not sick or injured in some way, giving it a good massage now and again can provide it with a number of benefits. One of these is the bond it helps you form with your bellowed pet, as giving your pet a massage helps to promote socialization while giving you special one-on-one time together.

Massage is also beneficial to animals that suffer from joint problems, over-extended muscles, arthritis, and torn ligaments. Or, if you are traveling or if your pet has to remain cooped up in a small place for a period of time, giving it a massage is a good way to help alleviate stiffness and to improve flexibility.

When giving your pet a massage, it is important to keep in mind that each muscle on its body has an effect on other muscles. Therefore, by helping muscles in one area become more flexible and relaxed, you also help other muscles in the area. At the same time, if your pet becomes injured in one area, this will also affect other muscles in the body. As such, if you are giving your pet a massage in an effort to alleviate stiffness or soreness, you shouldn’t concentrate all of your efforts on the affected area. Rather, give some attention to other areas of your pet’s body as well.

When Massage is Not the Answer

Although massage provides a number of benefits, there are also times when it is not appropriate. For example, if your pet is suffering from any of the following conditions, a massage should not be conducted:

  • Fever
  • Immune Disease
  • Infection
  • Lumps
  • Open Wounds
  • Rashes
  • Shock

In general, massage therapy does not help with any of these conditions and, in some cases, may actually make the problem worse.

Of course, before you begin to implement massage therapy on your own, you should first work with a certified practitioner in order to learn the proper techniques. The certified practitioner will observe your pet’s movement and anatomy in order to determine the best method of massage for achieving the desired results. After making this determination, the certified practitioner can show you how to continue with the therapy at home. In most cases, massage sessions last about 30 minutes long. If you are implementing a massage in order to help your pet’s muscles relax after being in a confined area, however, just 5 or 10 minutes may be enough to get your pet feeling happy and energetic once more. Regardless, it is best to consult with a certified practitioner before beginning a massage program so you can be certain to obtain the best results possible.