About 2 years ago I stumbled across a woman giving a massage to a large dog at Woofstock, a huge canine/human social and shopping event in downtown Toronto (read our post here). The snoozing dog receiving a massage was oblivious to the fact 100’s of dogs and people were zooming past. I knew massage could benefit conditions like arthritis, tissue damage, and circulation. But knocking a dog out in a crowded noisy environment like this? Just mind boggling!
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I learned the technique she was using was called Tellington Touch. Fascinated by it, I did “the google” and found their website and watched a basic video that got me started. The video demonstrated one technique utilizing circular motions. For the last 8 months this is what I have practiced on Kodee.
At first she acted like I was invading her privacy – dirty looks of “hands off woman” were thrown my way. Eventually I could feel her muscles relax under my finger tips as I started to master the massage technique to her satisfaction. Massage helped end the vicious cycle of pain, tension, more pain. It helps Kodee cope much better on symptomatic days and relax more.
The trick to managing chronic pain (in humans or animals) is to offer some relief before it gets too far along. Accessing pain in a non-speaking dog, it’s a little tricky. A great resource to help me evaluate Kodee’s pain level is this pamphlet written by the American Animal Hospital Association “How To Tell If Your Dog Is In Pain” It helps me look at Kodee’s behavior more objectively so I will know when a massage will maximize the situation best to keep her symptoms at bay.
“Reconnecting With TTouch”
A 3 part series on massage techniques
Last month I had a visitor to my blog who left a comment. I was very excited to learn she had a blog on wellness and holistic health, specifically canine massage. “Your Holistic Dog” took me from just understanding the basics of massage to a whole new level of learning!
Kathy Garland shares on her website step-by-step videos illustrating different massage techniques; If I thought Kodee enjoyed a massage before, it hardly compares to the deep sighs, relaxed muscles and content she feels at the end of a massage now.
Not that it really matters, but I am tickled to learn Kathy is a fellow Canadian from Vancouver and she also owns a ruby Cavalier. Get ready to see cute Teko in many of her videos!
Kodee has been doing really well the last few months with medication and the help of massage. She is back to having more energy, being playful and demanding full attention. In fact this weekend when I threw her and Becky both a ball, cheeky Kodee decided the game was all hers and picked up both balls. Not to worry about Becky though. She was busy in the garden eating plants... wait... BECKY!!!
Ramblings by Debbie