For a while we have heard of massage therapy for pets but have never seen it in practice first hand.
Some time ago, a friend invited us to a one day workshop on " Introduction to pet massage for companion animals", conducted by Betty Vong Jansen, founder and trainer at My Animal Sanctuary Pet Massage and Natural Healing. She is also a therapist at My Sanctuary ( Holistic Healing ).
Massage therapy has been practised on people since ancient times and in recent years, on animals as well, as the benefits are evident. It is a touch technique used to maintain and improve physical and mental health and to aid recovery from pain and injuries naturally. It promotes a sense of well-being to prevent future illnesses, lower blood pressures, improves quality of sleep and increases appetite. When our pets are calm and de-stressed, it serves to boost their immunity.
The power of touch with an "intent" as Betty stressed during the session, provides comfort to our pets, giving them re-assurance and helping them to relax, thereby promoting healing. For older pets and those recovering from illnesses, this is particularly beneficial as an on-going health care. The practice is also a means of communicating our love to our pets and strengthens bonding between us.
Betty demonstrating the "master stroke" on Josh.. Look how relaxed he was. Totally immersed in the "power of touch "... :)
The master stroke is a deliberate and focussed technique that uses controlled pressure, direction and intention to improve blood circulation by removing toxins and waste products and delivering oxygen and nutrients to tissues and cells. Massage stimulates the release of endorphins to reduce pain and induces relaxation by reducing muscle tensions.
Massages can benefit all animals from companion pets such as dogs, cats, rabbits, horses, livestock and even animals in the zoo with issues such as skin problem, stress, behavioural problems, arthritis, brain seizures, organ failure and even cancer and other health conditions. Racehorses and agility dogs are known to receive massages to enhance their performance in some countries.
11 year old rabbit with arthritis all relaxed after the healing massage by Betty.
At the workshop, Betty demonstrated the technique of the master stroke and the general massage sequence to end with grounding strokes. It was a fun and interactive session and we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves.
All too soon, it came to an end. This was the introduction to basic massage that we could use on our pets immediately. Betty also conducts more in-depth courses for those keen to pick up advanced skill. She can be reached at email@example.com
Now....to combine the benefits of massages with therapeutic grade essential oils on our pets ! Dilute with a carrier oil and massage into their bodies or perhaps diffuse some while massaging them. That would certainly put the animals on cloud nine.. !