Wednesday, September 22, 2010


I’ve been interested in this subject for awhile. I know how important therapeutic touch can be for us humans. It would only stand to reason that it would be important to our companion animals as well. Just look how good our dog feels when we pet and stroke them. Some of them live for the time that we give them affection and attention. It’s what they thrive on.

Having been trained as an esthetician I know the importance of massage to make a client feel relaxed and comforted. It helps reduce their blood pressure and for the hour or so that they are receiving this relaxing massage, they can literally tune the world out of their thoughts. I personally feel if people got massages, the world would be a better place to live. No I’m serious. We run around with tight muscles in our neck and shoulders where all the tensions and stress of the day accumulates. Every worry that you have will eventually present its ticket to your body in the form of tight muscles, headaches, stomach problems and gastro-intestinal illnesses. I strongly believe along with other environmental health triggers that the mind/body connection helps determine how we feel. Well the same thing can be said for our dogs. Of course they’re not carrying the world upon their shoulders, but they do get stressed just the same.

I remember the first time I ever received a professional massage was when I was in Las Vegas at the MGM Grand Hotel. I had planned on getting the massage and then going to the swimming pool. When I was finished receiving the massage, I was so weak and relaxed that all I could think of doing was going back to my room and sleeping. The swimming pool was the last thing on my mind. Just see how wonderful our world would be if everyone got a massage!

The Tellington T Touch system was developed by Linda Tellington Jones, PhD who is an internationally recognized animal expert. The Tellintong T Touch system is a method based on circular movements of the fingers and hands all over the body. The intent of the TTouch is to activate the function of the cells and awaken cellular intelligence - a little like "turning on the electric lights of the body."

The TTouch is done on the entire body, and each circular TTouch is complete within itself. Therefore it is not necessary to understand anatomy to be successful in speeding up the healing of injuries or ailments, or changing undesirable habits or behavior.

This method based on cooperation and respect offers a positive approach to training, can improve performance and health and presents solutions to common behavioral and physical problems. It also helps establish a deeper rapport between humans and animals through increased understanding and more effective communication.

Using a combination of specific touches lifts, and movement exercises, TTouch helps to release tension and increase body awareness. This allows the animal to be handled without provoking typical fear responses. The animal can then more easily learn new and more appropriate behaviors. By using the TTouch and a variety of other tools, like the Confidence Course, you can assist the animal in experiencing self-confidence in previously frightening situations. Even the most difficult problems are often eliminated. You can also learn how to apply the Tellington TTouch to assist with recovery from illness or injury, or just enhance the quality of your animal's life.

The Tellington TTouch can help in cases of:
• Excessive Barking & Chewing
• Leash Pulling
• Jumping Up
• Aggressive Behavior
• Extreme Fear & Shyness
• Resistance to Grooming
• Excitability & Nervousness
• Car Sickness
• Problems Associated With Aging

I confess I’m not familiar with the techniques of the Tellington T Touch, but with the massages that I give my dogs, they’re not complaining. Some dogs even love it when you massage their toes. After all the feet carries the weight of the body. With one of my dogs, all I have to do is touch her and she collapses at my feet ready for me to work my “magic” on her. Sometimes I feel like telling her she’s a lot younger and healthier than me and I should be the one laying down getting the massage. But somehow I don’t think she understands me and if she did, she wouldn’t want to relinquish her position of receiving the massage anyway!

From the book: GETTING IN T TOUCH WITH YOUR DOG - Animal bodywork expert Linda Tellington-Jones's latest offering is Getting in Touch with Your Dog: A Gentle Approach to Influencing Behavior, Health, and Performance. Tellington developed the Tellington Touch Method (TTouch) throughout her 40-year career working with animals. Here, she offers a way to effectively influence dogs' behavior and character, as well as their ability to learn. The guide enforces mutual respect between dog and owner, stressing a relationship based on appreciation and friendship rather than dominance and submission. By using a specific combination of Touches (there are 22 altogether) and performing exercises, Tellington insists dogs' performance, health and behavior can improve.

My rating: dog massage: (4)

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