Have you ever considered giving your cat a massage? The physiological benefits of massage for cats are just the same as for humans, and include relaxation, lowered blood pressure, better circulation, improved joint mobility and more. Not only is cat massage a great way of pampering your furry prince or princess, it’s also a way of de-stressing for both of you. From a preventative health perspective, cat massage can help you get to know your cat’s body better, which means you’ll quickly notice any sore spots or unusual lumps that develop over time.
How to Give Your Cat a Massage
- Ensure your fingernails are nicely trimmed (no jagged edges please), and if you have long nails, make sure you only use your finger pads to massage your cat.
- The first step is to make sure your cat is relaxed, which means you’ll need to be relaxed as well – cat’s are extremely perceptive and will notice if you’re even the slightest bit tense.
- Start by talking to your cat in a soothing and gentle voice to get him in the mood. If your cat likes to have his head or chin scratched, start in these areas. You’ll know when your cat is ready for the full-body massage treatment when he starts to purr loudly, close his eyes and tilt his head backwards in anticipation.
Now to start the full body massage! Repeat each of these steps a number of times, unless your cat shows you that he doesn’t like it – I’m sure you’ll recognise his signals if he doesn’t!
- Slowly stroke your cats back, from his neck to the base of his tail. You should do this as slooooowly as possible to make sure that he really feels the benefit.
- From here, move back to his shoulders and use your hands to make delicate circular motions around his shoulder blades.
- Most cats like to be massaged around their head, cheeks and chin, so unless your cat is the exception to the rule, spend a decent amount of time gently massaging these areas.
- Gently but firmly cup his chest in your hand, if he’s comfortable with this you can start to massage this area. If your cat likes having his belly stroked then go for it, although a lot of cats don’t like being touched on the belly, and you should use the gentlest touch here as it’s such a delicate area.
- Finish the massage with some pawflexology – working one paw at a time; use your thumb in the centre of each pad and slowly rub in a circular motion.
By this time, your cat should be purring in ecstasy and totally relaxed.
Important Things to Remember
- Don’t massage too hard and don’t pull your cats fur during massage – you don’t want to accidentally hurt your cat during a pampering treatment.
- Never use any massage oils and creams on your cat, your gentle and loving hands are all that’s required to give him a massage to remember!
So now you know how to give your cat a massage, check out some other ways to pamper your cat in the comfort of your own home, in our Moggy Day Spa article.
Do you give your cat a massage on a regular basis? What tips do you have?
Image: Ivva via Flickr