What is Galen Canine Myotherapy?


Galen Myotherapy treats lameness and stiffness in dogs, often relating from other conditions, old injuries or commonly, repetitive strain issues.  It treats chronic muscular pain that can result in physical and a multitude of behavioural changes.  Chronic muscular pain is widespread and often misdiagnosed and therefore often not offered the correct treatment.  So many dogs are often suffering in silence.

What is the treatment?

Galen Myotherapy is a unique and highly specialised manual therapy and exercise management. It uses appropriate, effective and targeted specialised massage techniques and exercise management to manage the chronic muscular pain and inflammation that is caused from many different conditions that are so common in a dogs life.

What is it for?

Galen Myotherapy can be highly effective in many conditions and situations, including:

How can I be sure my dog needs help?

Practically every lameness in a dog will be from a muscle problem.

Most of the conditions we see are as a result of underlying conditions, old injuries or repetitive strains.

It could stem from an accident or injury a dog has suffered that’s been treated solely with rest and not any muscular therapy. Alternatively, an injury or trauma could have treated, but serious and undiscovered muscular harm was left untreated. This is incredibly common.

Repetitive strains are also typical, and can result from inappropriate exercising or activities or environmental problems such as slippery floors or jumping in and out of a car.

To assess if your dog might be in need of some treatment,  Does your dog need Galen Myotherapy?

Why is muscle pain so important to understand?

When the body suffers muscle pain the affected muscle starts to physically ‘wind up’ and actually shortens in length. This becomes apparent when observing changes in a dog’s posture.

The ‘winding up’ is due to the pain from the injured or inflamed muscles.  The body is trying to avoid using these painful regions where possible, further inhibiting it.

This inhibition or lack of good function through pain or restriction creates a compensatory process or adaptive change.

A dog suffering muscle inhibition from any cause or condition (such as osteoarthritis or an injury) will present with a lameness – either intermittent or ongoing – or a stiffness.

These can be inconsistent symptoms but, unfortunately, will not be cured by rest alone.

The affected muscles will adapt to their new physical environment by becoming overworked and inflexible. This in turn creates insidious, ongoing, detrimental changes in the dog both physically and psychologically.

It’s therefore important to remember that dogs often suffer in silence!

We can’t see or might not notice their growing levels of pain. When we do, it’s often rationalised that the dog is simply ‘getting old’.

Mobility is essential for total health of all the body’s systems; not just the muscular, but the digestive, circulatory, neural, immune, skeletal, digestive, urinary, excretory, nervous, endocrine and reproductive systems.

After therapy, we’ll occasionally find that dogs seemingly unrelated symptoms are alleviated after the Myotherapy treatment!

Galen Myotherapy primarily treats the effects of the condition.

Galen Myotherapists always work legally and ethically.  They are all registered and licensed through CAAM that is externally regulated.


Our Guiding Principles:

1. Choice-led treatment
2. Owner empowerment
3. High level of specialist knowledge and training
4. Behavioural understanding
5. The sharing of knowledge
6. Continual development

1. Choice led treatment
It’s vital for the dog being treated that they feel they have a ‘choice’ in the treatment. We
never use forced restraint, and treatment will always take place on the floor or on a low
level, which is where a dog is most comfortable. The practice of ‘choice’ is one that has now
become main-stream with many top trainers and behaviourists using the term.
2. Owner empowerment
We recognise that when you dog is struggling owners want to help, and often it is difficult to
become involved in their treatment. However, we always include the owners in their dog’s
treatment plan, imparting techniques that are safe to use, along with exercise planning and
‘environment’ management.
3. High level of specialist knowledge and training
All Galen Canine Myotherapists®*are qualified to an exceptional level, and this
anatomy and physiology learning is directed at functional application. They
understand the dog’s anatomy in terms of movement, how the dog’s body works
and how stress can be reflected through behaviour. This knowledge is then directed
into a ‘dog centric’ application of choice-led treatment.
*Only someone that has trained with Galen and is a member of C.A.A.M. can call themselves a Galen
4. Behavioural Understanding
We were the first therapy organisation to discuss the direct connection between muscle
pain and specific behaviour patterns. We guide owners and handlers in understanding how
muscle pain can be reflected in their dog’s behaviour. This information and knowledge is
also invaluable when assessing and detecting changes.
5. Sharing of knowledge
The welfare of dogs is our primary concern, and this takes priority over all other
considerations. Therefore we believe in sharing knowledge through training, workshops,
symposiums and events all over the world. We truly believe that what we do improves the
health and wellbeing of dogs, and encourage our associates to share this in the most
appropriate and far reaching ways.
6. Continual Development
Much of our course content has changed radically over the years due to new developments
in understanding the behaviour and physical changes of dogs with muscular issues. We
ensure we keep up to date with the latest evidence and findings, and modify our treatment
and teaching to incorporate this. Like any science, there are new discoveries constantly, and
it’s vital for animal welfare that we’re at the forefront of current understanding.

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