Alternative treatments for dogs with certain forms of illness and chronic conditions will always be somewhat controversial, but they also have literally thousands of years of proven results.
There are pundits that suggest that if they actually did work that they would be much more accepted.
Those on the side of these alternative treatments will suggest that they are a much more natural way of treating certain conditions in your dog.
The two most common alternative treatments for dogs include massage therapy and acupuncture.
Although these treatments are not meant to be replacements for proven medical remedies, they both have several wonderful benefits.
In fact when used in conjunction with established medical treatments they can become very powerful.
Alternative treatments for dogs start with massage therapy which has been used for thousands of years on both humans, and yes, dogs.
It has several potentially powerful benefits for any dog that is having trouble with their muscles, painful joints, as well as circulatory problems.
There are also several circles that will swear that if done correctly, can even help to keep toxins out of the body and as a result, helps your dog’s internal organs remain healthy.
However, it must also be noted that there are some conditions where massage therapy will not benefit your dog at all.
Those conditions include fever, shock, infections that have already occurred, as well as rashes or immune mediated diseases.
Despite some of the obvious conditions, there are several ways that massage therapy can benefit your dog.
The soothing sensation of touch and the manipulation that it can induce on muscles has been documented throughout history in both humans and dogs.
If done correctly, it can immediately increase your dog’s overall wellness as well as bring a sense of calm in your dog.
If your dog is the least bit prone to stress, this may be the most powerful medical treatment you can apply.
It can also help to increase both the flexibility as well as the movements of tender muscle mass, as well as helping with providing instant pain relief.
There is also mounting evidence that this form of alternative treatments for dogs can also reduce or decrease the time it takes to recover from surgery or some type of trauma.
A properly preformed massage also helps to increase circulation in your dog which helps both their lymphatic and nervous systems.
But doing this, it helps to remove dangerous toxins from their body.
This form of alternative treatments for dogs immediately attacks their worst enemy; the aging process.
As your dog ages, arthritis, joint problems, or ligament damages from years of overextended muscles starts to take its toll on your pet.
The act of massaging your dog immediately helps return flexibility as well as reducing both physical and mental stress.
Each of your dog’s muscles affects other muscles which creates a domino effect.
Once the muscles are relaxed and then stimulated by massage, it has the same domino effect, but this time for the good.
Today’s medications can do wonders at controlling inflammation and trauma to your dog’s muscles, but massage therapy helps to heal the trauma.
This manipulation to your dog’s muscles strengthens them and allows them to use this new found strength slowly as it builds back up.
Massage techniques as alternative treatments for dogs comes in several forms, with the first form referred to as Efflurage massage.
This form of massage therapy will help increase your dogs circulation as well as flushing and warming their tissues.
This is a hand over hand technique that is used from the head to the tail of your dog.
It is done over their entire body and then down their outside limbs and up their inside limbs.
The next form is called passive touch massage.
This will involve no pressure or hand movements, but instead, the hand is held in place for 60 to 90 seconds to warm your dog’s tissue and calm them down.
This can be done separately, or in conjunction with the Efflurage massage. The next form is called Kneading, and it can be either a superficial or deep massage.
The superficial form is done by rolling and pinching the skin lightly, which stimulates your dog’s hair coat as well as their skin by increasing blood circulation.
Deep kneading affects the fibers of the muscles in your dog, as is applied directly to the muscles. You must be well trained at this form as it must avoid the bones.
This form of massage helps to release toxins in the muscles of your dog and reduces spasms.
It does this by bringing both blood and nutrients to the heart of the muscles and is best left to the professionals.
The final form is called Tapotement and is very powerful as it stimulates and enlivens your dog immediately.
However, it will never be used on any dog that has any type of abuse in their history.
It is done by cupping the hands over your dog’s chest area which loosens the mucus in the lungs and then hacking the large muscle areas, but avoiding the spine.
Tapping is also used on their head and then their entire body. Very quick brushing strokes are also utilized.
For all of these reasons, if a dog has ever been abused, it will again not be used and should only be done by a trained professional.
Simple stroking will complete this form of massage
This form of alternative treatments for dogs is even older than massage therapy, and is utilized to control the chi, or your dog’s vital life force.
Chi flows through your dog’s body through a series of pathways that are referred to as the meridians.
By simulating various points along these paths by the insertions of tiny needles, it is believed to release natural pain chemicals called endorphins.
It also releases anti-inflammatory substances that increase your dog’s circulation, and in doing so, decreases inflammation.
It has been a belief for centuries that unbalanced chi is the cause of most diseases in humans as well as dogs.
The average treatment with acupuncture will take between 30 minutes to one hour for your dog and is totally painless.
In some dogs, results may be seen immediately after the first treatment, in others, it may take 3 to 4 treatments.
However, just like humans, not all dogs benefit with this treatment.
Alternative treatments for dogs utilizing massage as well as acupuncture have been used as long as history has been recorded.
They can both be extremely effective and can certainly compliment modern medicine.
However, both are best left to professionals that really understand what and how to perform these techniques.
If there is any real doubt, however, gently massage your dog for several minutes and ask yourself if they do not seem more relaxed and happy afterwards.
You would be hard pressed to say no.
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