Massage for dogs with arthritis

Tui Na: Dog Massage For Arthritis

Tui Na is a massage with therapeutic technique that originated in Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine (TCVM). It is a form of bodywork that involves various manual manipulations, such as kneading, pressing, and stretching, to stimulate the body’s natural healing mechanisms. Tui Na massage is based on the principles of TCVM, which emphasize the balance and flow of Qi (energy) within the body. It is commonly used as a holistic approach to address various health conditions and promote optimal physical and emotional balance.

The significance of Tui Na massage for dogs with arthritis lies in its ability to provide drug-free pain relief, improve joint function, and enhance the dog’s overall quality of life. It complements conventional veterinary treatments and can be used as a standalone therapy or in combination with other modalities to manage arthritis symptoms effectively.

Benefits of Tui Na Massage for Dog With Arthritis

  • Alleviation of pain and inflammation: The massage techniques can help reduce pain and inflammation in the joints affected by arthritis. The massage helps to relax muscles, release tension, and promote the body’s natural healing response, leading to pain relief.

  • Improved joint mobility and flexibility: The massage can help improve joint mobility and increase flexibility in arthritic dogs. The massage techniques target the affected joints and surrounding muscles. Helping to loosen stiffness, improve range of motion, and make movement more comfortable.

  • Enhanced blood circulation and nutrient delivery: The massage stimulates blood flow to the arthritic joints, enhancing circulation. Improved circulation brings more oxygen and nutrients to the affected area, aiding in tissue repair and reducing inflammation.

  • Relaxation and stress reduction: Tui Na massage promotes relaxation in dogs with arthritis. The gentle and rhythmic massage techniques can help reduce stress and anxiety, creating a calming effect on the dog’s overall well-being.

  • Strengthening of the immune system: The massage can support the immune system of arthritic dogs. By promoting relaxation, reducing stress, and improving blood circulation, the massage can help enhance their body’s ability to heal and recover.

It’s important to note that while Tui Na massage can provide these benefits, it should be used as part of a comprehensive treatment plan for managing arthritis in dogs. Consulting with a veterinarian or a certified animal massage therapist is recommended. If it’s not available in your area, certified holistic pet health coach can guide you to support your dogs through online consultation. This is recommended to ensure the appropriate application with tailored techniques for specific conditions and needs.

Guide To Perform Tui Na Massage for Dog

Before you begin performing Tui Na massage, it’s important to understand the techniques and approach. Follow these steps to provide soothing relief and improve your pet’s well-being. Remember to observe your pet’s reactions and adjust accordingly to ensure a comfortable experience for them.

  1. Begin by gently massaging your dog’s spine, starting from the base of the tail and moving upwards. Remember to extend the massage all the way to the base of the tail, as the spine runs through it. Pay attention to your pet’s response, as they may find this part enjoyable.

  2. Employ the rolling technique. Starting at the base of the tail, softly grasp a small section of skin between your fingers and roll it forward toward the neck. If your dog or cat reacts negatively, take it as a sign that you should adjust the pressure or technique to match their comfort level.

  3. Proceed with the palpation technique. This step allows you to identify areas of discomfort. Using your hands, apply gentle pressure on both sides of the spine while feeling for any points of tenderness or sensitivity.

Note: It is recommended to watch the accompanying video multiple times to observe the exact movements involved. If at any point during the massage your dog appears uneasy or uncertain,  reassess the approach with a gentler perspective.

Tui Na Massage with Prescribed Medication and Supplements

Tui Na massage can be combined with medication and supplements prescribed by a veterinarian for arthritis management. Medications such as non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) or joint supplements can help reduce inflammation and provide pain relief. Tui Na massage can complement these treatments by promoting relaxation, and improving circulation. By integrating Tui Na massage with medication, supplements, you can create a holistic and well-rounded care plan for a dog with arthritis.

FAQ

Does massaging a dog with arthritis help?

Yes, massaging a dog with arthritis can be therapeutic for dogs with arthritis, especially osteoarthritis, for it enhances circulation and provides relaxation.

Can Tui Na Massage replace arthritis medication for my dog?

No. Tui Na Massage should be a complement, not to replace prescribed treatments. It’s part of a holistic approach that might include medications, supplements, and lifestyle changes.

How often should I give my arthritic dog Tui Na Massage?

The frequency of massage sessions will depend on your dog’s condition and your veterinarian’s recommendations. Overdoing it could potentially worsen the arthritis, so follow professional advice.

How can I find a qualified Tui Na practitioner for my dog?​

Look for certified animal massage therapists who specialize in Tui Na or other canine massage techniques. Your veterinarian might also provide recommendations.

Can Tui Na Massage be used for cats with arthritis?

Yes, Tui Na Massage can potentially provide benefits for cats with arthritis, similar to its effects on dogs.

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Dr. Ruth Roberts DVM, CVA

Dr. Ruth Roberts Holistiv Vet

Dr. Ruth Roberts is The Original Pet Health Coach, and has supported thousands of dogs and cats to overcome health hurdles like kidney disease, GI Illness, allergies and cancer. Her natural approach to healing creates a gentle yet effective path for your pet to take on their journey to wellbeing. Dr. Ruth created The Original CrockPet Diet, a balanced home cooked diet for pets, as the foundation of health. Dr. Ruth is now training passionate pet parents, and pet professionals to be Certified Holistic Pet Health Coaches so that more pets can be helped holistically.