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Canine massage is a branch of massage therapy that promotes health in dogs. Specifically, canine massage therapy is a form of alternative therapy whose benefits can include helping to relieve pain, helping to make joints more flexible, improving the range of motion, and benefiting the immune system of dogs. It uses touch to maintain or improve both physical and emotional well-being.

Canine massage can be offered for relaxation, rehabilitation, or competition - “sports massage” - purposes. The benefit of massage to dogs is equivalent to the benefit experienced by humans.

Massage therapy has many physiological effects for the subject. Animal experiments were conducted as early as the 19th century to document these effects. The physiological effects of canine massage include the following: 



  • Improved circulation

  • Endorphin release

  • Increased toxin excretion

  • Relaxation and tension relief

  • Reduced stiffness helping to restore mobility to injured areas

  • Injury prevention by increasing range of motion and enhancing muscle tone

  • Improved athletic performance and endurance

  • Posture maintenance and balance

  • Improving mental focus and attitude

  • Healthy skin and coat promotion by distributing natural oils.

Canine massage therapy should not be used as a substitute for veterinary medical care. However, when used in combination with medical care, it can help enhance the recovery process in many medical cases. In particular, canine massage used for rehabilitation purposes can include the following benefits:


  • Help to relieve age related problems

  • Reverse muscle atrophy from inactivity or disuse

  • Provide relief from muscle tension, soreness, spasms, and weaknesses

  • Provide relief from chronic pain and discomfort from arthritis, hip dysplasia, etc. through the release of endorphins.

In addition, canine massage can provide emotional well-being for the animal. Massage therapist often work with animals to calm hyperactivity, anxiousness, and nervousness.

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