Dog massage can come with many benefits for your dog’s physical and mental health. However, there are situations and conditions when massage is not recommended and can even be harmful to your dog. It’s important to know these contraindications and warnings to safely handle and support your pet. Here are some instances when it’s advisable to avoid dog massage.

Dogs enjoy massage, but it’s sometimes best to avoid it

If you’re used to massaging your pet at home, it’s a good thing, but in such cases, it’s especially important to be aware of situations when you should refrain from dog massage. Even if your dog pleads with sad eyes for the usual massage from you. Now, let’s see when you need to be strict on this issue!

Feverish or ill dog 

If your dog is feverish, ill, or suffering from an active infection, refrain from massaging them as it can cause additional stress and discomfort, potentially worsening their condition. Your dog’s body is focusing on the functioning of the immune system during such times, and massage can disrupt this process.

Severe injury or pain 

If your dog has suffered a severe injury, such as a fracture or spinal injury, or is experiencing severe pain, massaging them can cause further injury or discomfort. In such cases, consult a veterinarian first to determine the severity of the injury or pain, and only apply massage if approved by the veterinarian.

Recently operated or injured dog 

If your dog has recently undergone surgery or is injured, massage can interfere with wound healing or rehabilitation. Recently operated or injured areas should be treated with caution, avoiding direct pressure or manipulation on these areas.

Operated or injured dog

Skin conditions or irritations

In the case of a dog with skin conditions, such as eczema or fungal infections, or skin irritations or wounds, massage can cause further irritation or infection. In this case, address the underlying condition or irritation first before massaging your dog.

Immediately after eating or overly active exercise 

Avoid massaging your dog immediately after eating or engaging in overly active exercise. Massage right after eating can cause bloating or vomiting, while after overly active exercise, the dog needs rest and recovery, not massage.

Do dogs like to be massaged?

The answer is clearly yes! Dogs enjoy being massaged and they won’t even reject it when they’re not feeling well, for example, when they’re sick or feverish. That’s why you need to recognize those situations when it’s better to simply let your four-legged friend rest. It can be hard to resist the urge to do something, like pet or massage them, but remember that by doing nothing, you’re actually doing the best for them!

If your dog rejects the usual recreational Swedish massage, don’t insist! Dogs who previously enjoyed dog massage surely have a reason for saying no. In such cases, find out what is behind it. If necessary, consult a veterinarian! Once your dog has recovered or rested, they will once again appreciate massage treatment!

These are just a few examples of situations when it’s advisable to avoid dog massage. Always pay attention to your dog’s signals and reactions, and if you have doubts, consult with your veterinarian or dog masseur in the given situation. With the right caution and attention, dog massage can help support the dog’s health and well-being. 

If you choose me as your dog masseur, I will assess your dog’s condition every time, and if I find that your pet needs rest instead, I will communicate that.

For dog massage treatments, feel free to contact me in the Saint Augustine area! Give me a call, and let’s schedule the first appointment! (904) 377 6291

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