Ohio Interpretation of Laws Re: Massage 

Ohio Interpretation of Laws Re: Massage 

Animal Alternative Therapies

Revised May, 2010

The Ohio Veterinary Medical Licensing Board has had multiple inquiries regarding the ability of animal massage therapists and other allied health professionals to perform therapies on animals and not violate the veterinary practice act. The Board appreciates these individual’s willingness to understand and work within the law and rules of the veterinary practice act. Basically, the use of massage therapy to treat a medical condition of an animal is the practice of veterinary medicine and should be monitored by a veterinarian.

It is not the intent of the Ohio Veterinary Medical Licensing Board to restrict the practice of alternative therapy practitioners as long as they are not straying into the field of diagnosing and medical treatment of animals. The Board reiterates that if the animal practitioner is performing therapy for the purpose of relaxation or other non-medical purposes, then it is not considered the practice of veterinary medicine and is permissible. For instance, an animal that has inhibitions regarding travel may require massage therapy to relax it. In the event of a medical situation a veterinarian can certainly prescribe such services as a therapist can provide or the therapist can work under the supervision of the veterinarian as long as the veterinarian maintains the medical supervision for the animal.

Legal Interpretation:  http://www.ovmlb.ohio.gov/news.stm

Call to Action: 

PetMassage took the initiative to give the Ohio State Veterinary Licensing Board a demonstration and presentation of canine massage. That’s the reason for this interpretation of the veterinary practice law in the state of Ohio.  Prior to that, the Board had no idea of the value and compatibility of canine massage with their traditionally defined veterinary practice.

If you would like to learn to practice canine massage, take your professional level training workshops at the PetMassage Training and Research Institute in Toledo Ohio.


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