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Dog Massage Workshop


26 Mar 2018

By: Sarah McFarlane CCRA, CMT

Category: Workshops

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At a recent Dog Massage Workshop, which was a sold-out event held by Chews Australia and presented by Canine Balance on Sunday 18th March, 20 participants learned the importance of assessing and treating with dog massage.  We had 9 dogs, of a good mix of breeds, to work with and learn from during the workshop.

The Dog Massage Workshop Covered:

• The benefits of Massage
• Canine Anatomy
• Why muscles injure
• Working safely with Dog Massage
• Assessment of the canine prior to treatment
• Elements of Dog Massage
• Dog Massage techniques
• Treatment Goals and the importance of working with Vets

We began with Evaluation of their Dog

The importance of anatomy, structure, and confirmation is often overlooked before we treat
our dogs. Being able to acknowledge their dog’s structure enables owners to recognise subtle
abnormalities in the dog’s movement, earlier, to provide therapeutic benefit or treat injuries
before they worsen. We cannot properly treat our dogs until we understand the dog’s
anatomy and how it moves. Owners found this particularly worthwhile, giving them a better
understanding of why correct dog massage technique is so important, and when to use it.

Assessment

We broke the assessment into three areas, with the dog standing, sitting, and walking, to
observe, recognise, understand, and assess musculature aspects and movements. We then
moved on to feeling for lumps, bumps, heat, excessive tightening, and swelling.
Following a demonstration on how to assess their dog, participants broke off into groups to
practice on their dogs, working together to provide an assessment for discussion with the
whole group. This was particularly helpful to everyone, as the hands-on prac enabled them to
better understand the canine structure and anatomy, reinforcing the earlier segment. It was
emphasised that owners must always consider seeking professional treatment from a vet or
qualified canine therapist.

Treatment – What, When, Why, Where, and How to Massage a Dog

The workshop provided six most-used techniques for participants to take home and use safely and effectively on their dogs.  We covered:

  1. What type of technique to use;
  2. When the technique is most useful;
  3. Why the technique will have the best effect on your canine;
  4. Where on the body the technique should be performed; and lastly
  5. How to perform the technique.

A demonstration with slides was conducted, showing massage techniques, effects, methods, and finally practise.
This segment was extremely popular and enjoyed by all … especially the dogs!
There were plenty of practical exercises included throughout the workshop, enabling participants to practice skills learned.  It was a fun, educational day for everyone.

Chews Australia will be running another Dog Massage Workshop later this year.  Follow this link for more details: www.chewsaustralia.com.au/events/

Canine Balance will be organising more Dog Massage Workshops over the coming months.  Click here for more details:  caninebalance.com.au/canine-workshops/ or fill in the form to be updated when the next date is confirmed.