by Kristie Leong M.D., Dec 25, 2007
If your dog is anxious and high strung, he may benefit from a calming dog massage. Here's how to massage your dog to soothe him.
Is your dog nervous and high strung? One of the very best ways to calm an anxious dog is with regular calming dog massage techniques. By learning how to massage your dog in a manner that relieves stress and anxiety, your dog will be less likely to exhibit high stress, fearful behavior when around other dogs or family members. Here's how to massage a dog to calm him:
How to massage your dog: Time and setting for a calming dog massage
Choose an area of your home where you and your dog can be free of distractions for twenty minutes or so. If you have children or other dogs, keep them out of the room to help your dog relax. You can even play some calming, new age music in the background during your dog's calming massage.
How to massage your dog: Get into a comfortable position.
Have a seat on a couch or chair and position your dog in front of you in a sitting position between your open knees. Remove his collar after he's situated and set it aside. Gently pat his head and speak softly to him to encourage him to relax for the massage.
How to massage your dog: Begin your calming dog massage.
Start by moving your hands to gently rub the fur on your dog's neck in a rhythmic motion. Again, speak softly to him to comfort him. Gradually start to move the overlying skin on top of the muscles around with your hands. You should gradually feel your dog relax and further low his head.
As you feel your dog relax and respond to the massage, gently grasp the loose skin around his neck between your fingers and massage it over the muscles using a soothing, rhythmic motion. Gradually extend the massage forward towards his head and then in the direction of his back. If done properly, your dog will hold still and keep his head lowered. Spend time massaging the skin overlying his spine and around his ears using the same consistent movements.
A calming dog massage can be as long as you want it to be but should be at least twenty minutes in length to promote optimal relaxation. Always do you calming dog massage techniques in an area that's free of distraction where your dog feels comfortable and relaxed.
You can give your high strung pet a calming dog massage any time, but make it a practice to do it at least once a week or whenever your dog appears anxious and fearful. This is a great way to reduce your dog's stress level and control anxiety related behavior problems. Why not treat your dog to a calming dog massage?
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