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4 Reasons to Start Massaging Your Dog - Petsy

4 Reasons to Start Massaging Your Dog

We all like getting massages and love that relaxed feeling post a good spa session, don’t we? Similarly, your dog loves it when you rub his belly, scratch behind his ears, and massage his neck.

Just like an infant feels relaxed and calm when you gently massage his legs, massaging your dog not only enhances his physical well-being, but also emotional well-being. It also helps you bond with your furry friend and develops a connection with your furry friend. A few more reasons to get started with this routine or make it a regular one are:

  1. Relieves pain 

After a lot of running around, especially if you have a super energetic dog, a gentle massage will help relieve any superficial pain and make it easier for your furry friend to relax and feel comfortable. In the specific case of an injured pet, your vet might be able to instruct you with specific massage techniques to speed up the recovery process.

  1. Strengthen your relationship 

A gentle massage helps build a connection with your dog because once your pup realizes how good he feels, he’ll come back to you and associate you with the one providing him with that comfort. You can expect lots of wet kisses and cuddles!

  1. Improves circulation

Improved circulation helps raise oxygen levels in the body and lowers the risk of heart-related diseases. The act of pressing and releasing muscles causes the blood flow to increase.

  1. Hidden injuries

Since your dog is relaxed and calm during a massage, it helps discover hidden injuries or bruises which aren’t very evident. You can check for abnormal lumps or bruises while moving your hands gently over their body. It’s also a great practice to incorporate on a regular basis to ensure that furry friend is in good health. 

If you still need another reason to get on to a massage routine for your furry friend, the best reason of all is that anyone can do it! No certification is needed, and in fact, you could teach your children to do it too!

Simple ways in which you can massage your dog are:

  1. Start your massage by petting your dog gently all over. While you begin your massage, talk softly to your dog to keep him calm and relaxed.
  2. Rub your hand in long strokes along your dog’s back to help with restlessness or hyperactivity.
  3. Apart from scratching your dog on the head, massage their head and neck in circular motions to help them relax. Remember to keep the pressure gentle so your furry friend is comfortable. 
  4. Continue massaging to your dog’s shoulders. This is an area that your dog can’t reach, so take the extra time here so your furry friend can enjoy it!
  5. Move slowly to the chest and legs. Remember to read the signs your dog is giving you throughout the massage. If your dog doesn't like you massaging a certain area, move on to the next. 
  6. Gently rubbing your palm on the dogs’ belly can also cut down on gas and bloating caused due to digestive issues.
  7. Keep massaging until you get to his/her back legs and the tail area.

Petsy tips and tricks:

  • Let your pet decide what position he’s most comfortable in while getting a massage. They might want to sit, stand or lie down.
  • Don’t massage your dog if he’s unwell i.e. suffering from high fever, infection or others.
  • Don’t force a massage if your pup is fearful.
  • You can incorporate brushing or combing to groom your pet during the massage. 
  • Products aren’t really necessary, but massage oils that are specially designed for pets can be used. 
  • Be careful with if and when massaging your dog’s paw pads. Many dogs have an automatic “kick” reflex to anything touching between the pads on their feet.
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