There are dozens of established benefits from massage and physical therapy. There are the physical and mechanical benefits such as :
- For exercise and sport
- To manage pain
- Stimulation of the healing process
- Increase blood, lymph and nutrient flow
- Increase joint movement
- To improve muscle tone and strength
Then there are the psychological benefits including :
- Reducing anxiety, stress and other emotional issues
And then added benefits such as :
- Give the owner peace of mind
- Because it feels nice
Every now and again I get the odd one to add to my list. For example, I was once referred a dog who really struggled to poo. When she came to see me, she hadn’t been for a couple of days. Would massage help? Dunno, but stand clear and let’s try. For the next few days I received multiple texts from the owner detailing quantity and quality of that dog’s movements. It worked. There’s a new benefit then…helps to poo.
And yesterday I added a new benefit. Lovely anxious Whippet Sonny has been suffering from neck issues for some weeks now causing yelps and general depression. He came to see me last month and has now visited a chiropractor who put his pelvis back in alignment while making tweaks to his neck. Yesterday’s massage was much easier with Sonny adopting his usual “I’ll just lie here Dr Les” pose.
When I got home I received a message and photo from his Mum saying “First cuddle we’ve been allowed to have in longer than I can remember! Very rare, he must be feeling better. Thanks again”. So there we have it….massage benefit number 7654321 : Increases and Restores Cuddling Ability. That’s going to be one of my favourites.