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Private Sessions: Dry and Aquatic PetMassage for Dogs

PetMassage for Dogs, Aquatic and dry, are both offered at PetMassage. Dry outside the pool, Aquatic, in the new heated hydrotherapy pool.

Dry PetMassage for Dogs

The reasons your dog will benefit with PetMassage are the same as for people. Physical and emotional stress reduction, alleviating stiffness, discomfort, poor circulation, and rehabbing after injury and surgery. Dogs, like us, thrive with attention and nurturing! For dogs under 90 pounds sessions are given on a dog massage table. Larger or timid dogs get their PetMassage on the floor.

Dry canine massage has a similar ambiance as people massage with soft lighting, soothing music, minimal distractions, and pure and total presence. You are welcome to observe your dog and video them experiencing their PetMassage. Sessions are approximately 50 minutes.

Aquatic PetMassage for Dogs

Our intention at PetMassage is to be completely available for your dogs with all the skills we have in our therapeutic bodywork arsenal. Each PetMassage session combines swimming and aquatic bodywork.

Dry and Aquatic PetMassage combine massage and resistance-based movement to form a powerful venue for the structural musculoskeletal and myofascia alignment.

The characteristics and dynamics of the water become tools of the process. Buoyancy, warmth, current, texture, aroma, taste, spiritual familiarity, and the pressures of hydrostatic resistance all combine with touch and movement to promote cardiovascular and neural circulation, lymphatic drainage, and enhanced TCM chi flow.

Some dogs may require pre-session walking or a brief dry PetMassage to stretch the muscles before entering the water. There are no add-on fees for these additional enrichment services. It’s all included in your dog’s session.

Form follows Function

Sessions are functional. During in-hand swims, each water movement is safe, intentionally directed, and evaluated. During Aquatic and dry PetMassage, every manipulation is controlled and purposeful. All sessions include initial observation and assessment of gait, continuous observation and evaluation of physical movement. Consultation shares informed observation of your dogs strengths, weakness, balance, and fatigue levels. Progress is documented in clinical notes and available to your veterinary team.

Jonathan is the only person permitted in the pool with your dog. You are welcome to observe, comment, and videotape your dogs session. Sessions are 25-30 minutes. Towels are provided.

When is PetMassage right for your dog?

Massage is indicated if your dog

  • is an athlete to maintain balance and resolve minor injuries
  • is physically compromised
  • has been injured
  • is recovering from surgery
  • has arthritis or mobility difficulties
  • has spinal compression
  • is partially paralyzed
  • is an amputee (tripod)
  • walks in a harness
  • has been vet diagnosed with dysplasia of the hip, elbow, or patella
  • is overweight
  • is underweight due to hormonal or digestive imbalances
  • has seizures
  • is having a hard time emotionally adjusting to his/her or your schedule or changes in family dynamics
  • is a senior
  • is a puppy
  • is stressed
  • is depressed
  • is celebrating a birthday or anniversary

Massage and aquatic activities are contra-indicated if your dog

  • has diarrhea
  • is in shock
  • has open wounds
  • has a recently broken bone that has not yet knitted
  • has contagious skin pathologies
  • is infested with fleas or ticks
  • is a bite risk to his therapist
  • has unclipped claws
  • has been advised by your veterinarian not to get massage

The PetMassage Scope of Practice, per the Ohio State Veterinary Licensing Board: provides massage

  1. for relaxation
  2. rehabilitation massage and aquatic facilitation under the supervision of licensed veterinarians
  3. as palliative care
  4. advice based on 25 years of study and experience
  5. and at dog sporting events.


  • For active dogs, dry and aquatic PetMassage helps overworked and compensating muscles by enhancing strength, flexibility, endurance, conditioning, and wellness maintenance.
  • For older, senior, inactive and/or indoor dogs, dry and aquatic PetMassage helps renew skin, coat, mobilize joints, encourage isotonic and isometric movements, and lymphatic movement. The end result is a stimulated and refreshed dog.
  • For geriatric and hospice dogs, Transitions dry and aquatic PetMassage is movement meditation with touch. Its purpose is to help you and your dog share memories and emotions while bidding each other goodbye. This palliative care helps comfort your dog’s body and gentles their spirit, while offering you emotional support and an encouraging experience. is The T5ransitions PetMassage was created to support both you and your dog.

Session Descriptions, Packages, Fees

For Dogs:

Canine Aquatic Massage 30 minutes

Dry PetMassage Session 50 min

For Cats

In-Hand Swim 20-30 min

Cats love water too. Large cats in the wild hunt, bathe, and swim in ponds. Major zoos have specialized water parks for their lions and tigers. It’s true. Google it!

Now, for the first time, here in Toledo, in the PetMassage indoor heated pool, your cat can get all the health, conditioning, rehabilitation and overall wellness benefits “taking the waters,” their bigger cousins enjoy.

Enrich your cat’s life and times with an in-hand PetMassage Swim session.

Imagine just how bored your house cat must be! Our cats are smart. They’re curious, playful, devious, thoughtful, spiteful, and when they choose to be, affectionate.

Natural athletes with ancient instincts encoded deep within their minds and spirits, cats are proud and mighty.  Solitary hunters and rulers over their domain. Do you really think their majestic lives are fulfilled watching birds through the window from the back of your sofa? It must be so monotonous for such intelligent beings.

A cat recently shared with me that “we crave enrichment activities, something we’ve never done, to stimulate our minds and zest for life.”

It’s like that memory you formed on a vacation, gazing out at a sunset over a mountain range. That moment is a part of you, part of every thought, every action. Your cat will live the rest of their life with the memory of this safe, loving, and back-to-nature aquatic activity.

Cat Swims have proven to help cats resolve the depression and behavioral acting out they have as a way of dealing with grieving and boredom.

It’s also great exercise to help with weight loss, if your guy has gotten a bit thick around the middle.

One in-hand PetMassage Cat Swim session and you will have a new and improved, more complex and worldly, version of your already amazing cat.

Sessions are approximately 30 minutes, which includes gait and temperament assessments,15-20 minutes pool time, and 5 minutes dry time. Soft, clean towels are provided. All sessions are private, one cat at a time, and only by appointment.

Wednesdays only, 11- 3, by appointment only.

Schedule your cat’s spa time for next Wednesday.

For People

Dry People Massage 50 min

Jonathan’s massage is quiet, gentle, and powerfully nurturing.

You will get tremendous benefits from a full body massage/energy balancing as well. Jonathan is an RN, LMT practicing since 1997. His approach to massage has evolved and gentled from studying and practicing Orthobionomy, MFR myofascial release, Swedish massage, Tai Chi, Healing Touch, Reiki, Watsu Water Dance, and MDMA (Multidimensional Movement Arts).

Massage is more than physical manipulation of the body. It is a form of communication, a conversation, that happens in the subconscious, non-verbal realms. Jonathan’s touch and presence provide a safe place to allow thoughts, feelings, and unresolved life episodes to surface, be acknowledged, embraced, and released.

On-site Fees:

Human Massage/bodywork Session

Aquatic massage – People Float 30 min

Aquatic massage, or a People Float is an especially appropriate therapy for someone who is processing loss, change, stress, and/or anxiety.

Aquatic People Float incorporates the structural musculoskeletal alignment of Assistive Range of Motion, MFR, Myo-Fascial Release, Lymphatic Drainage, Trigger Point, and stimulation of TCM acupoints and meridians to enhance energy flow. The clear, clean, 95˚ water is so comfortable, it becomes an extension of your body. As you are moved across the surface, its gentle resistance pulls and pushes your body into a series of novel positions, that immediately return to your normal posture, your habitual way of holding your body. It’s like a guitar string; it plays its note, returns to stillness yet retains the memory of the sound.

Your body is held and moved in patterns that are similar to seaweed drifting with the water’s currents. You experience weightless buoyancy. Muscles and joints soften, releasing tensions and retained muscle memories. The effects are difficult to describe. The experience is non-verbal, often pre-verbal.  While the experiences are different for everyone, some common effects are an initial sense of mild disorientation, followed by happiness, and euphoria.  .    

Monday 11 am to 6 pm Reserved for Dogs
Tuesday 11 am to 6 pm Reserved for Dogs
Wednesday 11 am to 6 pm Reserved for Cats
Thursday 11 am to 6 pm Reserved for Dogs
Friday 11 am to 6 pm Reserved for Dogs
Saturday By Arrangement Reserved for People
Sunday Closed


PetMassage School/Clinic/Natatorium
2950 Douglas Road
Toledo OH 43606