@MountainMutts TY 4 Following! Woof!
02 July 2011
What might surprise some people in Western Culture is alternative medicine treatments used to heal people in ancient times were also used for their animals, and very effectively too.
Animals were a life line in many communities, they had to be kept as healthy as possible for survival of the people.
Now, although we do not rely on animals as a survival tool, most of us consider our pets family members, wanting the best for them, keeping them healthy and out of the vets office($$$).
Massage started out in ancient Asia...ancient Hindus, Persians and Egyptians used it for ailments, China has recorded use of massage 3,000 years ago, Hippocrates wrote papers on the benefits of rubbing and friction for joint and circulatory problems.
Egyptian Hieroglyphics show massage being used on animals for healing, horse massage was practiced in ancient China and Rome.
Massage made it to the West from around the 1600's to 1800's as changes were taking place in medicine. In the the early 20th century massage was used to treat World War I patients who suffered from nerve injury or shell shock.
Gradually massage has become popular in it's own right because of its proven benefits to humans, but whatever it does for a human it can do for an animal, and their bodies are under a lot of stress today too.
Benefits of massage for animals include:
- Easing aching muscles
- Increases immune system response
- Relieves stress
- Increases blood & lymph circulation
- Reduces pain
- Increases mobility
- Increases fluid around joints
- Aids in healing injuries
- Enables you to check physical condition of animal
- Promotes healing on a cellular basis
- Improves alertness
- Promotes a longer, healthier life
There are certain instances where massage is not recommended: Make sure you contact your vet for advice before starting a new treatment.
- Some skin conditions
Older dog in particular benefit from massage, loosening the muscles around the joints, promoting circulation of body fluids...especially important since pooch may not move around as much, not stretch as much because of stiffness, and many dogs sleep more as they age...besides that, it helps depression and just feels good!
Animal Massage Booklet - From Buddhadog.com downloadable PDF
American Holistic Veterinary Medical Association - Search for practitioner
The Tellington TTouch - a method based on circular movements of the fingers and hands all over the body. This is a therapeutic massage easy to do and effective...I've used it on my dogs. Very informative site with instructions and more.
A Note On Alternative Therapies
Mixing herb, aromatherapy, homeopathy, and/or any medication on your own may cause problems for your pet. Always tell your vet what your pet is taking and/or what alternative therapies you are using to avoid unpleasant interactions.
Keep in mind when using alternative products and services, the treatments are gentle to the dog's body and can take up to several months to see results.
Please be aware of what you give your pet; the herbal, aromatherapy, homeopathy products I carry have been around for awhile and are safe... but there are herbs, aromatherapy oils, and homeopathic products that can be toxic to your pet if not given properly(and in some cases, at all).