Who loves getting their bellies rubbed? Put your paws up? Spending time petting your pup is not only one of the best ways to build a loving relationship with them, it also makes them extremely happy and brings a ton of benefits such as easing stress and tension, soothing digestive issues, and improving flexibility. In this Pup Training article, we will be teaching you guys about how to massage your pup, where to massage your pup, and how it can benefit him/her.
How to Massage Your Pup
Depending on the size and age of your dog, you can massage them in three ways: by rubbing, by kneading with the tips of your fingers, and scratching. Typically, you can do a mixture of all three types while massaging your pup, and over time you can determine which is the best motion to use. Please make sure that before you come in contact with your pet, your hands are clean and free of any toxins, cleaning products, foods, or anything else that you wouldn’t put on your own skin. Like our skin, dogs skin can be sensitive and may react negatively towards certain substances. Also, when kneading or scratching your pup, make sure you are not doing it to hard as this will bring discomfort to your dog. Your dog will typically shift uneasily if they aren’t comfortable.
Where to Massage Your Pup & How it Benefits Them
- Head and Neck Area
Massaging the head and neck area is a very relaxing process for your pup, and can even sooth stress and anxiety. Best situations would be if your dog is upset about someone knocking on the door, or if they are scared. Rub your buddy’s head and scratch him behind the ear, and he will start to calm down. This area can be rubbed, kneaded, or scratched, but make sure to avoid scratching inside the area or near the eye area.
- Back Area
The back is the most common area to rub your dog. Massaging this area can reduce restlessness, and relief to your pup. If you go out in public, and your dog isn’t comfortable, massage his back by gently applying pressure around his neck and spine area with your thumb and index finger.
- Side Underbelly Area
Is your dog having digestive or stomach issues? Lie him down on your lap and gently rub the side of his underbelly with your palm any gently apply pressure with your fingers in open palm position. This, of course, won’t solve whatever is causing your pup’s upset stomach, but it will provide him with relief. Also, make sure to not rub their underbelly in quick motions, as this may upset their stomach more.
- Chest Area
Just like humans, unfortunately dogs also get heart problems, and can often feel pains or tension in their chest area. If your dog does have heart conditions, then you should regularly rub their chest area with an open palm, or massage their chest with your fingers.
- Paws and Leg Area
Dogs walk around all day, an although they have pads on their paws to add protection, their feet still do get tired. After a long day of walking, or just to show them you love them, lie them on your lap and massage all around their feet with your fingers. Not only will this bring comfort and relief to their little paws, it will also help build up trust between you and your pup. Also make sure to not squeeze too hard, or your pup will feel like your trying to bother them.
- Hind Thigh Area
The hind thigh area is one of your dogs favorite places to be pet, and often times this is where your pup’s “magic spot” is! You can rub, scratch, or knead this area, and your pup will love it. Rubbing this area is especially beneficial for older dogs who have joint issues, as this will bring much needed relief and improve flexibility and range of motion.
Now that you’ve finished this article, you are now a certified Professional Dog Petter! Now go out and use these skills to show your pup how much you love him (or her!)! With great petting skills comes great responsibility!
The Indoor Pup Team