1.) Why does my horse need massage if he is not lame?
Equine massage is most beneficial as preventative maintenance
since it is often easier to prevent a problem before it comes up than to fix it after the fact.
2.) Why do you need consent to massage from my vet?
All horses can benefit from massage
in some way, but some horses have conditions that could be exacerbated by massage. The horse itself or the specific area is
said to be "contraindicated" and shouldn't be treated with massage until the condition is resolved.
3.) Is there anything I can do to enhance the effects of the massage?
YES! Often your therapist will
recommend homecare for your horse consisting of hydrotherapy or some basic stretches. PLEASE be diligent about performing
this homecare since it is only for your horse's benefit and will help reduce the frequency with which your horse needs massaging.
4.) Aren't equine therapist's basically all the same?
NO, the education, background and experience of each therapist
can be very different. There are no regulations & no licensing process for equine massage therapists. Training courses
may range from a weekend seminar up to a two year degree program, leaving a wide margin in the quality of massage education.
5.) So how do I know if my horse is really enjoying & benefiting from massage?
All horses are different, but many will doze off, yawn, lick &
chew, stand hipshot, or even try to reciprocate by "grooming" their therapist. Some other things you may observe
are a softening of tense muscles, a reduction of trigger point signs or a lengthening of soft tissues.