We are familiar with our cat or our dog lying on our lap enjoying our hands and fingers stroking their bodies. We may be massaging our animals not realizing that our hand and finger movements are relief for arthritis.
Our cats love being stroked repeatedly and we love hearing their gentle purring. Our dogs lay snuggly in our laps and give us a gentle love lick or two on our hand as an approval gesture. We in return feel love, peace, and calmness.
For the many times we stroke our cats and dogs we may not realize they may be suffering from arthritis and our warm healing hands is massaging relief for arthritis pain which they may be suffering.
If you do know your pet has arthritis have you considered massage therapy?
Cat and dog massage can work in various ways offering relief:
- Slow repetitive strokes to calm and soothe muscles
- Help assist in moving fluids relieving inflammation
- Assist fluid movement in scars or damaged tissue
- Healing therapy from the stroking action
If your pets could talk, I am sure they would tell us more about how the massage is bringing relief for arthritis pain.
As you stroke your pet these are some rubbing techniques to use:
- Long, light and easy rhythmic strokes
- Strokes with very light pressure
- Stroke along the length of the muscle or in the direction of hair growth
- Use one or both hands
Use the palm of the hands:
- Gently rub large muscle areas with medium pressure. I tend to move my movements in a gentle, definite, and circular fashion.
- Work with an easy consistent rhythm
- On larger dogs gently do a wringing like motion, not just circular motion
- Work the same as the palm in smaller areas. Be careful of the amount of pressure. Be careful not to pinch.
- Lift soft muscle areas with thumb and fingers and gently roll the tissue you feel under the skin.
- If you find massaging is helping your pet tremendously you may want to consider acupressure. Training will be necessary for this technique.
Hand massaging may be all that your pet will need or you may also want to add supplements with their meals. The two most popular natural supplements are Glucosamine and flax. Or you may prefer your pet receiving medications from your veterinarian.
As you massage your pet the therapy will ease any muscle spasms, tension, edema, and toxins in the body. It is these conditions which cause inflammation and pain in addition to the joint pain of arthritis.