From a very young age I knew that I wanted to work with animals, I was just never exactly sure what kind of job that would be. After I graduated high school, I went on to become a Certified Medical Assistant. I found the medical field fascinating and even though I really enjoyed it, I never could ignore my love for animals. So, I decided to go back to school and study Veterinary Medicine.
After years of being in school I, unfortunately, came to find that my dream of becoming a Veterinarian would never be. This happened with the loss of a very special part of my life, my Rottweiler Memphis, when he suddenly became very ill one evening. After two nights at the emergency vet, being rushed to Auburn for emergency surgery, then spending four days in CCU, he went into cardiac arrest. Despite all their efforts, the Vets were unable to save him. Going through such turmoil & heartache and seeing how those who tried so hard to save him were affected, made me see that my heart could never handle that on a regular basis. I didn't know what I was going to do if I wasn't going to be a Vet. Little did I know, Memphis had already given me the answer.
One of the things I missed most when Memphis was gone was our nightly routine that he created. His favorite place to sit was in my lap. One night as he sat in my lap, I began to massage him. Big Mistake, because next thing I knew it had become a nightly routine. It was just a short massage at first, but soon he started demanding they last longer and longer until it grew into a full body massage. By the end of each one he would be asleep and snoring. After thinking about how much he enjoyed his massages, I did some research and found I could do this as a career! I was amazed to learn how much massage helped animals and all the benefits there were to animal massage. I knew right then this was what I was meant to do.
That’s when I found Equissage. I enrolled in the program & traveled to the school in Virginia where I studied with its founder Mary Schreiber and became certified in Equine and Canine Sport Massage Therapy. Since being certified, I have been able to witness firsthand the wonders of animal massage therapy. Every time I give a massage and I see the difference I make, it makes my heart happy to know I'm helping them and it makes my soul glow because I always have a piece of Memphis with me... he was my first massage, he guided me down the proper path and he showed me this is what I was ALWAYS meant to do.
When I needed help with my own dog, I found Lisa at Lucky Dog Training Academy. Not only did she help me teach my dog how to be a good-mannered dog, but I also learned I was pretty good at dog training. I enjoyed it so much, I started helping Lisa train at Lucky Dog.
Learning how to; train a dog, help others train their dogs, the different ways to train, and dog behavior & body language, have all made a difference when it comes to massaging animals.
It's helped me understand the subtle ways they communicate through body language letting me know;
Training dogs has also helped me to better understand how to work with an animal that's unsure, nervous, in pain, or overly excited. It's taught me that there will be times I might not be able to work with an animal and that I have to be willing to start with whatever they're willing to give me and work from there.
I have learned so much about; how their thought process works, how they look at the world, and how they see things compared to how we see them, that has truly helped me become better at what I do.