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Your dogs body is like your car - let me explain.

I am a keen environmentalist. There, I have said it! So right now I am noticing a lot more oil stains on the roads. I am also seeing more breakdowns on the hard-shoulders (where they exist). Have you noticed too?

I think this is a combination of the cars on our roads getting older and not being serviced as often as they should be.

But, as cars age they should be serviced regularly to ensure they run as efficiently as possible. Regular maintenance keeps cars running longer, lowers running costs and reduces the risk of them breaking down.

I am sure you have already seen the similarity with our dogs! As our dogs age those small niggles; the impacts of youth, the mad zoomies and the inevitable scars acquired over time, build up.

Over time the soft tissue (muscles, ligaments, tendons and fascia) as well as the skeleton suffer from the general wear and tear of life. Unlike a car though, the dogs body can repair itself - to a point.

Also, unlike a car, the body will adapt and adjust to work around an area that isn't working right. This is called compensation.

In addition to compensating for a problem area the body will try to protect it by 'splinting' the affected injury. This means the soft tissue around the area tightens to hold the injured area still.

DID YOU KNOW! Compensation and splinting can cause more pain and ongoing problems than the original injury?
Or that the body has a memory, so compensating and splinting for any length of time causes the body to think this is normal. I call this a 'pattern of holding tension'. This adds unnecessary pain and tissue damage.
Or that all of this is completely subconscious. Think about your own body - are you holding any patterns of tension? I am willing to bet that you are!

This is where regular maintenance comes in! A dog that receives regular massage has the opportunity to correct the tissue that is trying to splint an old injury and helps unwind areas of compensation. This allows the body to correct itself and function efficiently once more.

In this way massage helps maintain a higher quality of life, reduces pain, improves movement and mood. Massage, simply put supports your dog to be the best dog in the world.

Has any of the above resonated with you?

I would love to hear your thoughts and if you have a dog please consider regular maintenance massage. It could reduce the chance of them having a life changing injury or needing pain medications as they age.

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