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Contraindications of Canine Massage Therapy
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  • For any acute injury resulting in severe pain, heat and inflammation, it should be examined by a veterinarian before massage is commenced. Massage is not to be performed until pain, heat, and inflammation are resolved.

  • After meals, you should wait 90 minutes before a massage is performed on your canine because it will impair the body’s ability to digest food.

  • With the conditions of cancer, circulatory problems, diabetes, heart conditions, or post-surgery, massage can also be performed but using certain techniques for each condition.

    • In the conditions of cancer, because a massage will increase the flow of lymph fluid and may also increase the rate of cancer cell propagation, only light massage such as acupressure can be used.

    • Circulatory conditions such as edema and hematoma will benefit from a gentle light massage done in short frequent sessions.

    • For diabetes, deep massage can damage tissues as well as significantly fluctuate blood sugar levels by increasing the rate of circulation and also the rate of insulin and glucose exchanged within the cells, so it is recommended to have only gentle, light massages in short frequent sessions.

    • For heart conditions, sessions are to be kept light and short because increasing blood circulation will cause the heart to work too hard for that condition.

    • Post-surgery massage may only be commenced two weeks after surgery, or when the sutures have been removed, and no massaging near the surgery site for an additional two to six weeks. Massaging post surgery sites will aggravate the incision site and potentially weaken it.


  • For dermatological conditions such as mange, hot spot, septic foci, or ringworm, massage must never be performed over or near those areas because they can become severely agitated by massage.

  • A deep massage can trigger an epileptic seizure in the condition of Epilepsy, so only light massages are recommended.

  • When a canine has a fever and the body exceeds roughly 38.5 degrees Celsius, it indicates their body is fighting an infection and they are not to have a massage or it will counter the body's attempts to fight off their infection.

  • Conditions where there is an infectious or contagious disease such as Kennel Cough, Distemper, Enteritis, or any viral or bacterial related illness, a massage should not be performed.

  • Massage can cause in-season canines significant increase in blood flow, resulting in hemorrhaging for a female. Massage must also not be performed over the abdomen and lower back when a canine is pregnant because the fetuses could be disturbed and labour triggered prematurely.


*If your pup has any of the above conditions, please consult your Vet in regards to seeking Massage as treatment, and then contact your Canine Massage Therapist in order to come up with an appropriate plan of action to fit your pup's needs*

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