Dogs love to be petted, scratched behind the ears and have their bellies rubbed. But they also like to be massaged as well. After all, dogs have muscles just like humans and they respond to massage in a very similar manner. A massage can offer many benefits for a dog that will also increase your bond to them in ways that will improve your pet.
You will need to learn how to properly massage your dog before starting. This is because an improper massage increases the risk of injury or causing painful areas to inflame. Instead, learn the right techniques so that you can give your dog a good massage.
How to Massage the Dog
It may be best to go for a walk with your dog first so that they are a little more relaxed and no so tense. Otherwise, you’ll want to start simply by petting your dog to get them ready.
Rub Them All Over: Remember to speak in calm, even tones to your dog as you gently rub your hands across their back, chest, and stomach. Get them used to feeling your hands first before proceeding.
Massage the Neck: Use gentle, circular motions to help loosen up their neck and help them relax. Keep the pressure soft at this stage so you do not cause any injury.
Shoulders: Dogs tend to like having their shoulders massaged because they cannot reach the muscles themselves. So, use gentle, circular motions to help them relax their shoulder muscles.
Chest and Legs: Move to the chest and then the legs. You may find that your dog does not like their legs massaged, so leave that alone if that is the case.
Spine: Just like the shoulders, use circular motions around the spine of your dog to help relax the muscles. Do not touch the spine itself, just the muscles surrounding it.
Finally, get to the back and tail area to finish the massage and your dog should be feeling great. Be sure to keep aware of what your dog likes and does not like to improve the massage next time.
Advantages of Massaging Your Dog
Promote Well-Being: Your dog will feel much better once they get a proper massage just like humans. There is a feeling of being refreshed and revitalized that they will love and enjoy getting a massage again and again.
Reduce Stress: A massage naturally reduces the amount of stress and anxiety a dog is feeling that may come from a number of sources such as a thunderstorm, fireworks, or other unexpected event. Taking away the stress improves the mood of your dog as well.
Improve Circulation: This is another great benefit as the increased circulation helps promote healing and feelings of wellbeing. A proper massage can help reduce inflammation, strengthen their immune system, help with digestion, and helps lower the amount of scar tissue in their muscles.
Helps with Body Functions: In addition to increasing circulation, a good massage can also decrease the blood pressure, improve digestion, and assist with overall healing. Even the kidneys and liver function will improve as your dog relaxes and breathes easier as a result.