Why Massage For Agility Dog
There are a lot of health benefits you can gain from treating your dog to gentle massage from bonding to calming to clearing the lymph system. Deep massage or therapeutic massage should be left to the professionals but there is no limit to gentle massage.
There are as many ways to go about massage as there are teams out there doing it. Let your dog guide you in what it is they like and go from there. It is most common to start with the head and face, move on to the torso and finish with the legs and feet.
When you take the time to massage your dog, not only are you treating your athlete to a special time all about them, you are also getting to know your dog more thoroughly. You will spot injuries, swelling, heat and discomfort that you may have missed with just a quick glance over. It is especially good for dogs with long or thick coats. And all competitors should make it a habit to check their dog’s feet before and after a competition to discover injuries before they become infected or worse with strain.
Dogs with muscle strains or arthritis can benefit from gentle massage as well, but you really need to keep an eye on your dog’s reactions. Let them guide you on pressure and duration. Never put yourself at risk of being bit and if an area is notably more tender than normal be sure to check into it further or have a vet examine your dog.
During your first sessions you also want to be very vigilant of your dog as he may have a ticklish spot that could elicit a nip from your dog. On the flip side, if your dog pushes or leans into your fingers/hand he is trying to tell you he is enjoying it and would like more pressure. Increase it slowly and be sure to lighten up again when you move to a new area.