Covid-19 additional notes


Our vets are working really hard to support us and our dogs but some are not yet fully business as usual. As a result there may be some delays in them being able to deal with the necessary veterinary consent forms. Please be patient with them.

We would normally undertake gait analysis and completion of the general section of the consultation form at the first appointment. In order to limit exposure, we may complete the form by telephone before the first appointment. I will also ask you to send me videos of your dog walking and trotting if possible.

If you or any of your family have symptoms of Covid-19 or you need to self -isolate due to any possible exposure to the infection, please contact me as soon as possible so we can rearrange the appointment. Appointments rearranged for this reason will not incur a late cancellation charge.

If I have any symptoms or am aware of possible exposure to Covid-19 I will contact you asap to rearrange our appointment.

Knowing what to expect from Canine Massage Therapy before your first appointment can help to make the experience easier for both you and your dog. Also, if you are comfortable your dog will find it easier to relax.


Prior to booking in

Before I can book your dog in for a session we first need to be sure that they are suitable for massage. And also that your vet is happy for me to treat your dog.

Because your vet has a duty of care to your dog,  they may wish to examine them prior to signing the vet consent form. Especially if they haven’t seen them very recently, or not for the current issue that is presenting. As a result you may incur a consultation or other fee.

I will blog regularly about the various conditions massage can help going forward. Whilst my blog library builds up, there is also a lot of information about the conditions that can be helped by Canine Massage Therapy on the Canine Massage Guild website, I am also happy to discuss your dog and their presenting issues with you first. This can help to understand whether they are likely to benefit from massage prior to raising this with your vet.

Download a vet consent form

When you have downloaded the vet consent form, you will need to fill in the top third with your details and your dogs details. You will then need to give the form to your vet to complete the bottom part of the form. I cannot massage your dog without a fully completed form signed by you and your vet.

Booking in

Once you have vet consent and have emailed or Facebook Messenger’ed me a copy, we can book in the sessions for your dog.

Canine Massage Therapy, if suitable for your dog, should normally show tangible results within 1 to 3 sessions. Therefore we will initially book in a series of 3 sessions roughly a week to 10 days apart.

If I cannot continue with the initial course of treatment, the subsequent sessions will be cancelled at no cost to you. This could happen if it is necessary to refer you back to your veterinarian for any reason.

Before your first session

Have a think about your dog’s medical history as I will need to ask you about it when we first meet. So details such as past operations, illnesses and any medications your dog is taking will be relevant. Some, but usually not all, of this information will be on the vet consent form.

I will email you a list of questions prior to the appointment which ask you for some background on your dog. Please include as much information as you can when replying as it helps build up a picture of your dog before me meet.  

If you have time prior to the first session, I would ask you to take a look at the 5 Principles of Pain, This provides a downloadable pdf that may help you to identify activities they may be struggling with. And also changes in behaviour which may be as a result of pain. This information will help us to assess progress across the sessions.

5 principles of pain document image

Day before the appointment

The day prior to the appointment should ideally not contain overly vigorous exercise. So no ‘weekend warrioring’ or extreme sports activity please. Dogs, like humans, can suffer from DOMS, Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness, following vigorous exercise. When DOMS is present it makes massage a very uncomfortable experience, something we definitely want to avoid!

If your dog is unwell at all on the day of the appointment or in the days before your first canine massage appointment and you are concerned whether massage would be appropriate, then please do contact me as soon as possible. Then we can decide whether the appointment should still proceed as planned.


Day of the appointment

On the day of the appointment, please avoid feeding your dog in the hour or ideally two hours prior to the appointment time. Also avoid overly strenuous exercise that day. Their normal walks and small treats etc are absolutely fine.


I hope this information helps you understand what you need to know, do or not do before your first canine massage appointment.

My next blog Canine Massage – What to expect – covers the day of the appointment and beyond.

Contact me for more information

Any questions? Want to book an appointment?

Interested in finding out whether massage can help your dog?

Ginger dog at a canine massage appointment