Yesterday, I pulled into the service station to fill the tank. I also asked for help because I was filling a gas canister for the first time and didn’t want the nasty stuff splashing all over me.
I have advertising on my car. In fact, it’s one of the best investments I’ve ever made. Because of the advertising, I find myself in some odd circumstances explaining what I do.
This time, it was the station attendant. “I suppose they do that a lot in America,” he said as an opening statement.
I then replied with something of a stock-standard explanation, “for the same reasons people get massage, dogs benefit, too. I work on dogs of all ages – those who have arthritis, some are recovering from surgery and injuries and I even help with dogs that are suffering from anxiety and stress. Some of my clients are only young puppies to help them become calmer and used to handling.”
“Oh, I met a dog at my in-law’s holiday home who is afraid of men. I only had to say something and the dog ran away.”
Me: “That’s definitely a stress response. I use massage combined with behavioral training techniques to work with dogs who have stress problems. Last week, I started work with a puppy who gets so stressed at the thought of going in the car that she vomits.”
I consider every conversation an opportunity to educate people about the wellness impacts and multiple benefits of dog massage. It isn’t just about ‘rehabbing’ from injuries – it’s a lot more!
Kathleen Crisley, specialist in dog massage, rehabilitation and nutrition/food therapy, The Balanced Dog, Christchurch, New Zealand