Dogs and their people are happier and healthier with PetMassage

“General discussion of acupressure points around the ear easily accessed during canine massage and their gainable benefits”

By PetMassage | May 25, 2018 | 0 Comments

Full Title: “General discussion of acupressure points around the ear easily accessed during canine massage and their gainable benefits”

Author: Kim Crowe

Date of Publication: March 12, 2018


Research Paper Text:

“General discussion of acupressure points around the ear easily
accessed during canine massage and their gainable benefits”
Kim Crowe
May 21, 2018

Canine massage practitioners can bring multiple benefits with intentional touch to relax the pet, work with fascia, stretch, move and open areas of the skin and body. Among these general benefits are the stimulation of acupressure and acupuncture points. Knowing that stimulation of these places along the body can potentially cause great benefit, can help remind us to focus and breathe with more intention here, thereby affecting much more than just where our hands lay.

According to Merriam-Webster Dictionary, acupuncture is “an originally Chinese practice of inserting fine needles through the skin at specific points especially to cure disease or relieve pain” and acupressure is “the application of pressure (as with the thumbs or fingertips) to the same discrete points on the body stimulated in acupuncture that is used for its therapeutic effects”. Though the same treatment sites are used, the technique is different. Both stimulate specific points on the body linked by meridians and organs described in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). Although acupressure has been around for more than five thousand years, modern scientific research is just now trying to figure out how it all works. “Bi-directional connection[s]” of the internal organs and their corresponding skin areas or “peripheral somatic projection zones”, create bio-dynamic reflexes when stimulated by acupuncture treatments in actual clinical studies (Schoen, 1194. p. 318). A pressure-sensitive point, or Active point, can relate to and indicate a physical abnormality.

With these body mechanics, research has attributed physical benefit even with the “individual variation” of “innervation distribution patterns”. Auricular nerves, for instance, have overlapping “cutaneous innervation zones” and the “main receptor structure seems to be bundles of nerve fibers and their microenvironment” that “when activated by pressure or needling these cells contribute to local inflammatory reactions, perpetuating stimulation of the sensitive nerve fibers [even] after discontinuation of the mechanical stimulation.” (Schoen, 1994. p. 317). Essentially continuing to work even after the treatment. Methods like massage and low-level-light laser therapy are recommended as alternatives to needles. Cautions such as using fewer points and less vigorous stimulation when using ear acupuncture is recommended with debilitated and cardiac patients. Massage allows for accessing these points more safely.

TCM works with these physical structures of the body but also energetic ones, such as the meridians, elemental and yin/yang aspects. The ears are notable here as well. Meridians cross the entire body but “those surrounding the ear are the three yang meridians of the gall bladder (GB), small intestine (SI), and triple heater or triple burner (TH).” (Schwartz, 1996. p. 184). The ear points are a common intersection for many channels and though there are numerous TCM meridians and acupressure points across the body, the ears are noted as “connecting all the [meridian] channels of the body” (Schwartz, 1996. p. 185). TCM also relates the ear with yin energy and the kidney elements of water and blood movement. Furthermore, “the two fire elements of the SI and TH are connected to hearing” (Schwartz, 1996. p. 186). There is even an acupuncture methodology that works strictly on detailed ear points to affect the entire body, used in both humans and animals, called therapeutic ear acupuncture or Auriculotherapy.

The acupuncture points are mapped and named according to the meridians and translated from Chinese to English as possible. Several texts describe at least nineteen notable points found by the ears alone which can be easily accessed during canine massage. These include Gall Bladder points 2, 3,5,7,8,9,10,11,12, and 20; the Triple Heater points 17,18,19,20,21,22; and the Small Intestine points 17 and 19. There are also three significant ear points not named for these meridian locations. These are M-H-10 (or tip of the ear point), An Shen (or Peaceful Spirit) and Kai Zhin Jui. (Matern, 341). These points can be manually located at each ear tip or as indentations almost circling the ear base.

Lining the anterior ear base along the opening in an upright eared dog the most common points documented are the TH-21 or Ears Door or Gate, below that SI-19 or Palace of Hearing or Auditory Palace, and below that GB-2 or Auditory Convergence, Confluence (or Reunion) of Hearing. These are suggested to be massaged together (4). Centered at the posterior base of the ear is GB-20 (Wind Pond or Pool) and following a straight line ventrally across the ear opening to a “well-defined impression” (LuckyDogHealth) is TH-17 (Shielding Wind), directly in between these two points lies the An Shen point.

Benefits can range and owners and caregivers should look for subtle changes. Regular stimulation of certain acupressure points are recorded to assist with ear issues such as hearing imbalances, red, dry, inflamed ears, chronic ear wax buildup, chronic moist ear problems and ear pain. GB-12 and GB-19 points are said to calm the spirit. Other points located near the ear aide in clearing internal or external wind and heat, general support of the ear and head, or resolving obstructions in body channels. Some are seen to benefit the temporomandibular joint or conditions such as gingivitis, nerve paresis, continuous viscous discharge, eye problems, or even moving stagnant Qi. The TB-22 point is noted to aide disturbed hearing and equilibrium, the GB-8 harmonizes the diaphragm and stomach, and the SI-19 stimulates all yang channels. (Matern, 2012. p. 256).

It is also notable that TB-18 (or Tugging Vessel), which calms wind and relieves fear, is located caudal to ear base “in a depression between external acoustic opening and jugular process” close to the external artery and should be massaged with knowledge and caution (Matern, 2012. p. 251). Likewise, SI-17 (or Celestial Countenance) is located in the “depression between corner of jaw and cranial edge of sternocleidomastoid muscle above carotid artery, jugular vein, and cranial cervical ganglion” which are important blood and nerve tissues (Matern, 2012. p. 159). This point offers support of the neck, throat, ears and lowers rebellious Qi.

According to Dr. Schwartz, in our canine companions, “the most common type of ear problems seen in veterinary practice are hearing imbalance, red, dry, inflamed ear with and without waxy discharge and soupy, smelly, moist ears.”(Schwartz, 1996. p. 184) Interestingly, the acupressure points around the ear seem to address these such issues. There are many benefits to be gained with intentional touch and utilizing the knowledge that the ear points are connected to benefitting locally as well as other areas of the body. As a canine massage practitioner, it is not knowing the names and which exact point treats which specific health concerns, but that incorporating this into your canine massage practice can bring support to the entire body with your touch. Some canine clients may be too sensitive for acupuncture, making them ideal candidates for gentle acupressure accessed during canine massage sessions.

Delightfully such things as focusing energy and calming the spirit and mind may be provoked while massaging the ear area, making this part of the body something not to miss or dismiss in any canine massage. With information at our fingertips, more acupressure points all over the body can be added to your skill set during your canine massage sessions.


“Acupressure.” Merriam-Webster. 2018. Web. January 2018.

“Acupuncture.” Merriam-Webster. 2018. Web. January 2018.

“Dog Acupressure.” Lucky Dog Health. <> Web. January 2018.

“Dog Acupressure Chart and Pressure points.” Lucky Dog Health. <> Web. January 2018.

Jager, Mariah. The Natural Way A to Z guide to alternative healing. New York, New York: Black Dog and Leventhal Publishing, 2005.

Matern, Christina DVM. Acupuncture For Dogs and Cats A Pocket Atlas. New York, New York: George Thieme Verlag, 2012.

Schwartz, Cheryl DVM. Four Paws Five Directions: A Guide to Chinese Medicine for Cats and Dogs. New York, New York: Crown Publishing, 1996.

Schoen, Allen M. DVM, MS. Veterinary Acupucture: Ancient Art to Modern Medicine. New York, New York: Mosby, 1994.

How Animal Massage Can Help With Your Diabetic Dog

By PetMassage | May 25, 2018 | 0 Comments

Full Title: How Animal Massage Can Help With Your Diabetic Dog

Author: Kirsteni Leung

Date of Publication: March 12, 2018


Research Paper Text:

How Animal Massage Can Help With Your Diabetic Dog
Kirsteni Leung
May 21, 2018

Diabetes is a disease that causes either the dog’s body to not produce enough insulin, type-1, or to make the cells insensitive to insulin, type-2. The most common type of diabetes is type-1. The onset of diabetes in canines are unknown, but is suspected to be involved with genetics. The symptoms of diabetes are as follows: change in appetite, increased water consumption, weight loss, decrease in coat quality, frequent urination, cataracts, and/or lethargy. Dogs with diabetes can live a normal life, but they will be on insulin for the rest of their life. Pet massage with special emphasize on acupressure points can help the dog live a better-quality life.

The Acupressure points of concentration for diabetes are the spleen, urinary
bladder, conception vessel, and stomach. The spleen point is on the inside of the hind leg and it moistens and tonifies blood. The two points in the urinary bladder are called “Lung’s Hollow” and “Kidney’s Hollow.” These points are found on both sides of the spine. The conception vessel is located on the midline of the abdomen and aids in digestion. The stomach strengthens the qi and hind legs and can be found on the outside of the hind leg.

My 13year old Shi Tzu and Bichon mix, Bugsinator (aka Buggy), was diagnosed with diabetes a year ago. I ran an experiment on him where he got a massage twice a week, with no change in diet or amount of insulin. Throughout the experiment his blood glucose levels lowered slightly each week and his happy and calm personality became more evident.

Week 1
Before the experiment, Buggy had the following condition: Coat was thin and dull, black fur turned light grey, eyes were almost pure white due to the cataracts, drank almost 8 cups of water a day, had to urinate every hour, and loss a lot of muscle tone due to lethargy. During his massage, he was confused at first but he enjoyed the touching and relaxed towards the end. At the end of the massage he was happier and almost puppy-like. It was the most hyper and happy we’ve seen him in a while.

Week 2
Buggy’s coat is still thin, his fur is still light grey, and his eyes are still white. The part that’s telling me, my massage worked is that he is drinking less water, about 6 cups a day, and urinating less. He still is acting like a puppy and is more active, so he gained back some muscle tone. As I was setting up the table for the massage, he wasn’t confused. He anticipated getting a massage but wasn’t happy with being picked up onto the table. During the massage he relaxed right away and lied down. I think Buggy views this as a time for him to get all my attention. At the end of the massage, he was still really happy and had a calm feeling about him.

Week 3
Currently Buggy’s coat quality and eyes are the only things that have not changed. The color of his fur darkened and he is still drinking more water than he should be drinking but not as much as when I started the experiment. His muscle tone has gotten a bit firmer and he got stronger. Buggy happily stood next to me as I was setting up the table for his massage. At the beginning of the massage, I did some high energy scratching because he was too excited. During the massage, he fell asleep but woke up when I was holding the pressure points on his nose. He seemed the same at the end of the massage, but happy is good.

Week 4
Buggy looks amazing. Even his veterinarian is surprised at the big changes in him. His coat thickened and his fur is almost back to black. He’s drinking around 3 cups of water each day and only goes bathroom 2-3 times a day, which is a huge improvement. The only thing that has not had a significant improvement in is his cataracts. They are still solid white but there must have been some improvement because he isn’t walking into things anymore. Buggy knew right away that he was getting his massage and was waiting for me at the table for me to set up. During the massage he lied down once I started and fell asleep. At the end of the massage, he was really calm and just happily trotted around for the rest of the day.

By the end of the experiment, Buggy was doing much better. His blood glucose level was low enough for an adjustment in his insulin medication and he looked like a different dog. The massages lowered his insulin levels, improved his mood, calmed him down and at the end I felt that we had a closer bond.

Massage Reversed Camille’s Bad Breath. Really.

By Jonathan Rudinger | May 24, 2018 | 0 Comments

Massage Reversed Camille’s Bad Breath. Really.

Unexpected and Unsolicited Testimonial

Last evening Anastasia and I are walking the dogs around our neighborhood. We paused to chat with some neighbors sitting out on their front steps. Camille jumps up on the fellow’s lap to lick his face. He looks up at us, surprised. He asks “Her breath is so sweet. Do you give her mints?”‬ And, leaning in several times to sniff her mouth, he went on and on about how unusually fresh her breath was.

‪She’d had her dinner. She’d had her 5 minutes of chew time with a raw bone. ‬

The only thing that was out of the ordinary-extraordinary-was shoot a YouTube video with her the previous night. The topic was Halitosis: PetMassage to Correct Your Dogs Bad Breath!

Wow!‬ This was a totally unexpected and unsolicited testimonial! Sometimes I forget how amazing PetMassage is.

Notes for the “Bad Breath” YouTube Video

Here are the highlights; the notes I wrote before filming:

Halitosis or breath with scent of sweet daisies-
Demonstrate with Camille
Causes: ingesting something nasty or physical imbalance coming up from the digestive tract
1 Massaging gums freshens breath.
2 Fractioning: increases circulation,
3 While finger brushing-gentle pumping-enhances capillary circulation, stimulates saliva production and
assesses teeth and gums
3 ways to assess: visual, tactile, smell
Describe each and demonstrate
4 Endorphin Release. Rubbing upper cranial gum, frenulum, is relaxing and enjoyable. We learned about this point in the video about the flew, dog lips (to be released in June). It is a very powerful endorphin release location. Endorphins are the body’s natural opiates, designed to relieve stress and enhance pleasure. Universally positive response with dogs and especially horses.

Energy flow TCM, Chakras

While using our fingers to brush their teeth and gums, we stimulate TCM energy points on the Stomach Meridian, increasing saliva production, balancing bile, gastric juice -body water pH.
Stimulates the Conception Vessel for digestive balance, emotional balance, and grounding. The CV flows through the 4th, Heart Chakra, 3rd, Solar Plexus chakra, 2nd, Sexual, Chakra and 1st, Root Chakra.


If your dog’s breath makes you gag, here’s something you can do about it. Fresher breath means a happier, healthier dog. And, a happier healthier you.

Hope you found value in this little video. If you did, please subscribe to our YouTube channel.

And please, share this content with your network of friends. Everyone with a dog, at some time, will appreciate a way to freshen their dog’s breath.

Video Schedule

This video will be released on our new YouTube channel in June. It’ll join the other little 3-6 minute videos that we are making for our new “PetMassage Training and Research Institute” YouTube channel. Our plan is to release a new one every Tuesday at 2 pm for the next year.

My breath expresses who I am. It has the scent of health, vitality, happiness, and contentment.

By Anastasia Rudinger | May 24, 2018 | 0 Comments

Patellar Ligaments in Dogs: Can Massage Help?

By PetMassage | May 21, 2018 | 0 Comments

Full Title: Patellar Ligaments in Dogs: Can Massage Help?

Author: Anastasia Chisiu

Date of Publication: March 12, 2018


Research Paper Text:

Patellar Ligaments in Dogs: Can Massage Help?
Anastasia Chisiu
April 6, 2018

The canine stifle is a particularly delicate and fragile area of a dog’s body. The stifle contains the confluence of three bones- the patella, the femur, and the tibia; it also contains two ligaments- the cranial and caudal cruciate ligaments. The ligaments link and support the femur and tibia, working together with the patella to guide and limit the movement between the two bones. The cranial cruciate ligament (CCL) is especially fragile because of the steepness of the angle between the tibia and femur; therefore, partial to full tears and ruptures of the CCL are one of the most common injuries to the stifle, causing pain, lameness, and exacerbation of the degenerative effects of osteoarthritis. Though there are surgical options for repair of a torn or ruptured CCL, there can be no argument that prevention is greatly to be preferred over any cure.

Injuries to the stifle most commonly occur when there is a twisting motion applied to the joint. The stifle is a type of hinge joint meant to move only in a backward and forward motion, and not nearly as freely mobile as a ball and socket joint. This is where muscular support comes in; in order to prevent dangerous and damaging motion to the delicate structure of the stifle’s ligaments, muscular training can help to steady the joint without placing undue stress on the ligaments themselves. Appropriate exercise before or rehabilitative exercise following an injury can help to train the muscles to take some of the burden from the ligaments.

Exercise is the key, and the key to appropriate exercise is balance; therefore, the benefits of massage are deeply important in that it helps to return a body to, or encourages a body to maintain, proper balance in its structures. The Mayo Clinic approves massage therapy for human anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injuries (analogous to canine CCL injuries) because it helps to reduce joint swelling and improves circulation; the same holds true for canine CCL injuries. Improved circulation promotes complementary muscle growth and can thus be seen to help prevent some amount of ligament stress before an actual injury or tear takes place. Specifically, joint mobilization and rocking in canine massage can bring real benefits to canines with the potential for CCL injuries (certain breeds seem to be at higher risk for CCL injuries such as Labradors, Rottweilers, and giant breeds such as Newfoundlands), canines that have already had one CCL injury and are at risk for another on the uninjured pelvic limb due to an altered gait on the previously injured limb, and canines that are in recovery from one or more CCL injuries in their pelvic limbs.

My focus is on preventing patellar ligament injuries in canines by using the practice of Pet Massage to improve muscular strength, circulation, balance, joint mobility and lubrication, and the dog’s own awareness of her or his own body and limbs. By focusing on prevention, I hope to defray much of the pain experienced by our beloved companions and the costly and difficult decisions that we as dog guardians must make following a CCL injury. Prevention is the best, but I also choose to focus on the rehabilitation of canines that have already experienced a painful injury and possibly have even undergone surgical repair. Even those canines who have had a ligament surgically repaired may undergo a long, painful rehabilitation and Pet Massage can and does ease and speed the process. For dogs who are either poor candidates for surgery due to separate medical issues or age, or dogs with partial tears or ruptures in which conservative management of the injury can prevent it from worsening without having to resort to invasive treatments, Pet Massage can promote muscular strengthening, joint stabilization, and pain relief without dangerous medications and without high-impact exercise that would be considered inadvisable for certain canines.

In conclusion, Pet Massage can help patellar ligaments in dogs by focusing on all of the complementary processes in the joint itself and in the adjoining structures of the stifle. Frequently, other types of therapeutic treatments for stifle injuries focus only on the ligament itself, or only on the interaction of the ligament and the tibial plateau. The holistic approach of Pet Massage focuses on all the body processes of the dog and by doing this can not only help post-injury, but also holds promise for preventing some injuries before they actually occur.


Barthel, J. (July 18, 2017). Massage Techniques for a Damaged ACL. Retrieved from
McGorry, A. (Archived). ACL Injuries. Retrieved from
Facts 707. (May 7, 2012). Stifle Joint. Retrieved from
Torn Knee Ligament in Dogs. Retrieved from
Healthy Dogs Need Healthy Joints. Retrieved from
CCL Injuries in Dogs. Retrieved from

Effects of Dog Massage on Post-op Patients

By PetMassage | May 21, 2018 | 0 Comments

Full Title: Effects of Dog Massage on Post-op Patients

Author: Jerrod Williams

Date of Publication: March 12, 2018


Research Paper Text:

Effects of Dog Massage on Post-op Patients
Jerrod Williams
March 12, 2018

The art of massage has been around for thousands of years. The art has knowingly benefited humans, but animals have also been cared through massage, especially dogs. Inside all life is an energy called chi. Chi is the fundamental life force that flows through all.  Given specific areas of a dog’s body, the chi force can be adjusted through specific massage techniques by a practitioner. These benefits may include increased oxygenation, improved joint flexibility, relaxation, and pain relief. Moreover, the Institute for Integrative Healthcare finds that massage therapy for animals has been shown to:

  1. Relieve muscular tension, spasms and pain
  2. Reduce trigger point formation
  3. Reduce scar tissue
  4. Increase range of motion
  5. Improve tone in weak muscles
  6. Relieve intestinal gas and aid in digestion
  7. Interrupt the pain cycle by activating sensory receptors
  8. Increase circulation
  9. Increase lymphatic circulation and immunity
  10. Decrease blood pressure and reduce heart rate
  11. Calm animals – massage increases dopamine and serotonin levels   and is linked to decreased stress levels

According to “Canine Massage Techniques and Clinical Applications”,  The goals for massaging such patients are to provide comfort and relaxation. After the postoperative period, massage can be continued as the patient transitions from inpatient to outpatient status (1). The more comfortable and relaxed a patient is, the more effective the recovery. During a postoperative period, the surgical site should be avoided if massage treatment proceeds. In addition, according to the Institute for Integrative Healthcare, “massage on animals can benefit them at any time, but massage can also be utilized pre- and post-event to improve performance in those animals.”

In this case study containing 10 test subjects, the purpose is to observe the effects of direct massaging with post op cadavers. The study is to observe the recovery of patient’s post-op when massage treatments are applied. Five subjects were treated with massaging before spay/neuter surgeries and five subjects were not. Prior to surgery, the subject would be observed for stress and anxiety. Most patients are automatically nervous and scared when they enter a hospital environment. In general, subjects were chosen based on how fearful or calm they were. Calm and fearful behaviors are best for more accurate findings. Out of the five patients chosen to be massaged before surgery, three presented fearful behaviors and two presented calm behaviors. Of the five non-massaged patients, three presented calm behaviors and two presented fearful and vocal responses. Both groups had a well-balanced set of patients to compare massage study. Patients ages ranged from six to seven months and their weights ranged from 25 to 50 pounds. Lastly this study I believe, should show the effects massage can have on post-op patients and reveal the changing results rather than non-massaged patients.

The study is designed to massage patients until the tenth patient is concluded. The first patient was a non-treated 7month black lab named Pepper. Before initial treatment, Pepper showed nervousness and was consistently barking in the treatment area. This first patient showed the usual response of a canine within a hospital before a procedure starts. After the procedure, Pepper was quiet and calm, and she recovered within three hours. The first patient to be massaged before the procedure was a six-month, 20-pound terrier named Rio. Rio begun by displaying fearful characteristics, although as time went on, he appeared to be just looking for attention, which meant he would be more likely open to receiving a comfort massage. I performed some assessment strokes mostly rubbing the areas I knew were simulating to him. In response, Rio appeared to recover quickly than Pepper.

The third patient was a seven-month French bulldog named Winnieford. Winnieford displayed calm characteristics for a young dog. By being the third patient, Winnieford was to be just observed and not massage treated. After the procedure, Winnieford was very lethargic with a recovery of about three hours. The fourth patient was a seven-month hound mix named Austin. he was very fearful and had to be muzzled for pre-op preparations. In order to make Austin more relaxed, I applied slow and then quick, long strokes to produce simulation. Austin showed some calmness with being massaged. He did not give any resistance during pre-op preparations. After the procedure, Austin was calm but lethargic, and recovery was normal in duration, though he seemed to be more alert during recovery than non-massaged patients.

The fifth patient was Luna, a six-month English bulldog. Luna showed normal anxiety behavior before pre-op procedures begun. Luna was not massaged before surgery. After surgery, Luna was still very sedated. She had very low energy, and her recovery still was normal. The sixth patient was an energetic, six-month lab named Murphy. I assessed Murphy with fast strokes over his body. He displayed more calm behavior after. The massaging really helped Murphy and he did not resist to anything prior to after being massaged. He also recovered greatly. The seventh and ninth patients were Busy, a seven-month puppy, and Einstein, a seven-month beagle. Both patients were very energetic prior to entering the hospital. They were a challenge to keep still for pre-op checks, and both were very vocal. After surgery, both patients were very lethargic, and Einstein displayed vocal discomfort while recovering.

The eighth and tenth patients were Winston, a six-month King Cavalier and Spooky a

Portuguese water dog. Spooky was nervous before I massaged her. Winston was calm and very eager to be touched and comforted. Both patients received the basic massage motions before pre-op procedures. After treatment, both patients were calm but recovered quicker as predicted before previous patients.

In conclusion of the study, close to all patients that were massaged recovered more quickly then patients that weren’t massaged. This clearly shows that massage on animals can benefit them, especially for pre and post-op care. There are also many other clinical applications that can be applied into the canine medical field. Techniques would be slightly different between chronic pain patients and sick patients. Overall, using the techniques of compression, friction and direct pressure, post-op massage patients have shown quicker recovery than non-massaged patients.


  1. Robinson, Narda G., DVM, Shelly Sheets, CMT. Canine Medical Message Techniques and Clinical Applications. Lakewood: AAHA, 2015.
  2. Dematteo, Leslie LMT, MS. ’11 Wonderful Benefits of Animal Massage.” Integrative Healthcare. 30 September 2015. Integrative Healthcare. 20 April 2018 <>.



Video Tour of PetMassage Classroom

By Jonathan Rudinger | May 18, 2018 | 0 Comments

Video Tour of PetMassage Classroom

We just posted a new video on our new YouTube channel. It’s the Tour of the PetMassage classroom.

I invite you to view the video. Here is its transcript:


Hi. I’m Jonathan and I’m here with Camille and Ilaria. We’re going to give you a tour of the PetMassage classroom.

Lecture table

We just finished a Foundation level workshop. This is the manual that we use during the workshops. This is the table where we have our lectures and our discussions. That’s about 40% of the class – maybe 35%. The rest of the time is spent working with dogs, hands-on, at the tables. We are going to show you the tables in just a minute.

Credenza with dog models

During our class we talk a lot about the skeleton. Where bones are attached muscles, are attached, to bones, the ligaments, the fascia. And how the skeleton is hanging within a bag of fascia. This is Bones. Bones, would you like to say hello? Hello. That’s Bones.

We also talked about the bony landmarks of the dog: ie, the point of the shoulder, the tip of the ear, the placement of the scapula, the width of the first cervical vertebra. We use this model for that. There are also acupressure points that we refer to during the class. It’s all part of the lecture.

Library case

We make a lot of references to other textbooks in our class. This (12 inch) group is books and videos that we have created here at PetMassage. We are happy to note that they are being used in other animal massage schools all over the world. We also have medical textbooks, rehabilitation books, books on acupressure and all sorts of things related to canine massage.


These are the charts that we use and publish. These are charts used in vet tech schools, and veterinary schools. We have the Contours and Bony Landmarks of the Dog, Dog Joints and Ligaments, The Skeleton of the Dog: Dog Bones, Superficial Muscles of the Dog, and Chakra and Energy Levels of the Dog. The chart on Canine Acupressure Points is one that we refer to but don’t publish.


When students come to us, they often bring their dogs with them. These are the crates for the dogs where they can lounge between their spa treatments.

Business cards

This is one of several bulletin boards that we have. It displays brochures and business cards from students who have come to PetMassage from all over the world and returned to their homes to create businesses massaging dogs. That’s very exciting. I love that one. It’s so clean…a simple paw print.

Framed Magazine articles

I’m excited to share this with you. This was our first national exposure. Dog Fancy magazine from the year 2000. PetMassage has been teaching Canine Massage for over 20 years. It talks about methods of massage, different pressure points; it’s a sweet little article. The editor chose to use a photograph of a person sitting on the floor. It wasn’t me. I do almost all my massages with dogs on tables. I don’t think the body mechanics are great when a person is sitting in the floor. And that’s what I teach.

Here are some other framed pieces. Here’s one from Dog Fancy Magazine. One day someone called us and asked us if we saw the article in Cosmopolitan magazine. I hadn’t heard about the story. Evidently, Cosmopolitan figured out that Canine Massage is a “Cool New Career” for young women! I love it.

Breathe sign

Breath is so important in canine massage. We use awareness of breath in every aspect of massage. Did you know that if you lock your knees you stop breathing? When you lock your knees, it cuts off your connection to the ground. So it’s important to keep breathing and keeping soft knees.

Tongue diagnostic chart

We use this tongue diagnostic chart in our class as well. It’s important to notice the shape, color, texture and hydration of the tongue. It’s a good indicator for the amount of stress our dogs are experiencing.


This is one of the favorite parts of the tour and we hope it’s one of the favorite parts of your tour of our classroom well. It’s the Maps. We have two maps here. One is the World map and the second is the map of North America. All these little pins show you where people have come from, traveling to Toledo, to take their PetMassage for dogs hands-on training. These are people from Canada, United States, South America, South Africa, France, England, and Italy. We have people from the Asia area; from Taipei, from Singapore, from Japan and Korea. We just recently had someone visit us to study for a week from Australia.

Speaking of United States we’ve attracted students from every state. It’s very exciting. Each one of these little pins represents someone who has traveled here following their dreams. Each one of these pins represents a dream. Each one of the students who comes here loves dogs. And with a one-week workshop, we give them the skills to massage dogs and start a business. Our Foundation Level workshop includes the massage skills, of course, and dog handling skills. There’s also a short (easy to follow guide to starting a canine massage) business course. So, students can get started with their canine massage business.

Water dispenser

It’s important to stay hydrated. We always have filtered water available for students and the dogs. And especially for thirsty people who are giving YouTube interviews. Sip. Oh, that’s much better.

Certificates credentials, and accreditation

Here are some certificates and credentialing for us and for our school. This one is important. This is the PetMassage Scope of Practice. If we are going to have credibility as a vocation we need to have a set of posted limitations about what we can and cannot do. Here, you see that the first thing we do is: no harm. That’s really important. Also, you can see that we are very careful not to make any kind of diagnoses or treat specific conditions/concerns. It’s important to have a Scope of Practice. Here we have a Mission Statement. It defines what it is that we do. So, we can remember why we are in business.

And, the most important of all of the certificates are these two certificates for our two teaching assistants: these are for Camille and Ilaria, our two boxer teaching assistants. They earned these certificates.

So this is the school. This is the classroom where you will be coming when you take the hands-on modules of your Foundation level and your Advanced level training. In a recent Foundation level workshop, out of five students, four people signed up immediately for the next available Advanced level training. It’s the part two of the series of two parts of training. It fills in all the gaps. It gives you a more complete education.


Thanks for taking the tour of our PetMassage facility. I hope you liked what you saw. If you like this YouTube video, please subscribe to our channel. We will be releasing a new video each Tuesday at 2pm. The channel is PetMassage Training and Research Institute.

Additional commentary

PetMassage is one of the pioneers and leaders in the field of canine massage as vocational training to create dog massage businesses. Jonathan has taught over 300 workshops in classrooms that look like this. This classroom, at the PetMassage Training and Research Institute in Toledo, OH, is a template for the workshop space in new PetMassage Franchises. If you are interested in joining Jonathan as a franchisee-instructor, visit PetMassage™ Franchise Schools.

I train for my new career with compassionate instructors in a supportive, loving, space.

By Anastasia Rudinger | May 18, 2018 | 0 Comments

Muscle testing 

By Jonathan Rudinger | May 9, 2018 | 0 Comments

Muscle testing 

Muscle testing is a technique used in PetMassage. It’s a visual way of asking your higher consciousness for advice when your regular consciousness isn’t sure. The theory is: that there is another level of communication, of understanding, of recognition that some things are right, some wrong; some things are better for us than others.

Muscle testing is included in our PetMassage™ Advanced Level Workshop curriculum because when working with dogs’ energy patterns, we need to learn to trust our intuition. We cannot see and often have a very difficult time locating chakras, meridians, and identifying and palpating myofascial release plains and trigger points. Who ya gonna trust? Ghostb-? No. Yourself.

Baseline and Variations

All forms of muscle testing require that a baseline of neutrality be established. Then, testing with strength or flexibility, we can identify variations and interpret them as being positive or negative.

Linked Fingers Technique

The form that we employ is the linked fingers technique. A chain is only as strong as its weakest link. So, a weak link implies weakness and a strong link suggests strength. Tarzan say, “Strong, good.”

With each hand, touch the tip of your thumb to the tip of your first (pointer) finger. You’ve made two “okay” signs. Link them together and pull them apart through the points where fingers and thumbs meet.

How can you use this to test anything?

Think about something you are sure about, like the phrase “My name is —-.” The link ought to stay strong when you attempt to pull your links apart. Now, think about something you are sure is incorrect, like the phrase “My name is Pablo Picasso.” The link ought to open and separate at your slightest attempt to pull your finger through.

Practice this with several variations of questions. Soon you’ll notice a pattern. You discover that you can rely on your intuitive responses as demonstrated by your strength and weakness.

Advice on Supplements and Kibble

You can ask yourself for advice on lots of topics. For example, I get overwhelmed by the chemical names on containers of supplements at our local health food store. There are differences in claims, ingredients, potencies, and manufacturers. My expertise is not nutritional supplements. It’s canine massage. So I muscle test. I’ll walk down the aisle tugging at my chain. (Could have been worded a little more PC.) Loose, loose, loose, loose, solid. There. I don’t even look at the labels anymore. I know that whatever is in that plastic container is what is best for me…even if it happens to be Evening Primrose. Evidently, my higher consciousness thinks that somewhere deep inside my inner femme must be having some issues.

Or, I’m in the dog food aisle trying to figure out which brand of kibble to buy to supplement our dogs cooked diet. None of them are great. I know that. But, one of these is the best option of this group for the health of my dogs? Loose, loose, loose, loose, loose, loose, kind of solid. There. I don’t even look at the labels anymore. I know that whatever is in that shiny bag is what is best for the ladies…even if it is kibble.

Ask and It Shall Be Given

You can ask about anything. Ask about your relationship. Ask about your job. Ask yourself if the June PetMassage™ Foundation Level workshop is the one you want to take to begin your new career massaging dogs as a Certified PetMassage™ Practitioner.

Is your chain link absolutely strong? Almost?
Discount incentives

We recognize that the fee for our workshops may be a stretch for some. And, we recognize that we want more students registering for our June 7-11 PetMassage™ Foundation Level Workshop in Toledo Ohio. So we are offering a 20% discount for this one workshop. Want an even better price? If you attend with a friend, you both get 30% off!

Now muscle test. Thought so! Register today. I’ll see you in June.

New PetMassage YouTube Video Releases

By Jonathan Rudinger | May 9, 2018 | 0 Comments

New PetMassage YouTube Video Releases

‪Please watch our first two New Happy PetMassage YouTube Videos:

“How Massaging Your Dog Helps You”


“How to Quiet Your Dog With Meditation” @YouTube.

A new one will be released each Tuesday at 2pm. Watch for them. They’re pretty funny. Also, Please subscribe to our new YouTube channel: PetMassage Training and Research Institute. ‬

If you enjoy what you see, please Share the love and Subscribe to our new YouTube channel: PetMassage Training and Research Institute.