Jean-Pierre Hourdebaigt (LMT) says there are 4 T’s we need to be aware of when we massage: Temperature, Texture, Tenderness and Tension and these we need to do all by feeling with our hands/fingers.
Changes in the temperature of the dog’s skin suggests that certain problems exist in that area. For example, an area that is abnormally cool to touch compared to the rest of the body, due to lack of blood circulation in that area, may indicate problems such as muscle contraction etc
Texture of the tissues refers to the density and elasticity of the skin and muscle fibres. With practice you will develop a sense of touch for what feels normal and or too soft or puffy.
Tenderness of the structures such as muscles, tendons, ligaments, joints, will relate to the sensitivity response of the animal to your touch.
Tension refers to the tonicity of the muscle fibres. Muscle tension can be a result of too much exercise or overuse of certain muscles due to pain like arthritis in other areas of the body.
Therefore please remember that when you start to massage that you use your fingers as sensors to get feedback through the 4 T’s on the condition of your animal.
Common Stress areas in dogs are:
If you would like a consultation with me or to find out when my next class is, please contact me on email@example.com or +27 76 941 079
We all love a good massage, right? But imagine if you are giving your dog a massage and she is not enjoying it? In this article I will give a few pointers on the benefits of massage and how to keep in tune with your dog’s comfort.
First and foremost, YOU need to make sure you are in the mood to massage your dog. They are so sensitive to our moods and it is no good trying to get them to relax and enjoy it when you are impatient, irritable, and not fully present.
The first thing you need to do is create the ambience. I use soft music, dim lights, and relaxing essential oils in the diffuser like Lavender. I make sure the diffuser is on the 5 min on and 5 min off function and I use only 1 drop of Lavender as they cannot leave the room while you are massaging like I recommend in the safety guidelines with diffusers. (for more info on this contact me for my next essential oils and animals’ class)
Your first approach of touch must be gentle with no massaging yet. Speak softly to her while you are busy as she may feel her space is being invaded. Because of this she needs to know you are there to part love and healing to her and this will develop trust between you with regards to massaging. Watch her body language as she will tell you if she is uncomfortable by lip licking, panting and generally looking tense. This process of developing trust for massaging must not be rushed and if you need to do only 5 minutes a day of just touch for a while, then do it. Remember the goal is that you are wanting to develop trust and a deeper relationship with your dog so that she will relax and enjoy a massage and this will only benefit both of you in the long run.
When you place your hands on her, your hands must be warm, as it is no good tensing her up with a freezing hand. Always keep one hand on her if you need to do something with the other hand, e.g. add oil to the massage (this is later). This constant touch keeps her relaxed because if you take your hands off her and then place them back on, it is like starting from the beginning again.
Part of your ‘dog sense’ is to learn to read her body language so that you can learn if you have pressed to hard, or she has sensitive area of pain etc. Take your lead in your massaging from your dogs’ cues as you keep speaking softly to her and learn to be sensitive to her body’s cues under your hands and fingers.
Sensitivity of the hands is important, and you need to learn to trust your hands and your fingertips to give your accurate feedback of the physiological state of the parts you are working on. A good way to develop your perception is to do the work with your eyes closed as this will help you focus on your fingertips and developing your tactility.
All of this is started straight away when you are just touching your dog in the beginning without even massaging yet.
If you wouId like a consultation with me or to find out when my next class is, please contact me on firstname.lastname@example.org or +27 76 941 4079
In today’s day an age with so much information out there about essential oils for animals, how does one know what is true? I use the following guidelines:
The difference for me now that I have studied Animal Aromatherapy to when I just knew oils, is remarkable. I approach it in a totally different way and much more in depth. There is so much to learn about the oils and the help one can get from someone who is not qualified does not even scratch the surface.
Using essential oils is like using medicine and not everything is safe for animals or can be used on certain animals and more. And with being a Veterinary Assistant for 10 years, I totally get this. Before I would have thought “what do you know?” I understand now that I am a qualified Animal Aromatherapy Specialist.
Enjoy your essential oils safely and ask help from the right people. You would not go the pool specialist to ask about essential oils would you?
To book a consult with me contact +27 76 941 4079
It is important that the Essential Oils you use for your animals and your family are 100% pure and this is why I have chose doTERRA. They are CPTG - Certified Pure Therapeutic Grade oils and each bottle has a batch number on the bottom so you can check that batch for yourself. Synthetics that are in other oils are toxic to yourself and your animals so I don't recommend any other brand because of this.
I have been in love with animals since I was a child and yet, because I didn't want to do veterinary, I never even thought of how else I could work with them. Fast forward to 2000, when Terrence and I were missionaries in India, and all I was worried about were the animals that came across my path, yet it was only in 2007 that I began working with animals as a Vet Assistant at a Vet Practice in Muzienberg.
It was during this time that I started Australian Shepherd SA Rescue Org in 2012 and subsequently moved the rescue to Gauteng in 2016. I have been full time in the rescue since 2016 and in 2019, due to many aussies with cardio issues I started investigating a more holistic approach to compliment the meds they were already on and this led me to discover dōTERRA Essential Oils.
I have been learning from 3 different vets in the USA, 2 of which are on the veterinary board of dōTERRA. I am loving this new journey that the rescue and myself is on and learn new things every day.
The reason I chose these oils is because:
1. In my experience, most dogs and cats don't eat the herbal powders;
2. dōTERRA oils are 100% pure and therefore no harmful synthetics for you and your pet;
3. They are easily accesible world wide;
4. It not only benefits you and your own household, but you can help others with them;
5. You have support as you continue to learn
6. I can trust this brand;
7. I can earn from these oils and get oils free too;
8. These oils treat the whole: emotions, soul, spiritual and physical!
To find out more about these oils or Australian Shepherd SA Rescue Org, contact me, Ingrid on 0769414079