Professional, trained and committed to your dog's care

My academic qualifications include:

  • Diploma of Executive Management, NZ Institute of Management, 2004
  • Canine Therapeutic Massage Therapist (CTMT), 2009
  • Canine Sports Massage Therapist (CSMT), 2010
  • Senior Canine Massage Therapist (SCMT), 2014
  • Certified Canine Fitness Trainer (CCFT), University of Tennessee, 2023

How did I get here, a second career managing an independent dog massage, fitness and rehab practice in Christchurch, NZ?  (My first career, spanning 20 years, was in environmental science where I held roles in consultancy, research and local government).

This is a brief history:

In 2003, I adopted an English Pointer named Daisy who was my ‘heart dog’ and became my muse.  She had a myriad of health problems starting with dietary intolerances, then a poisoning from landscape work on our property, followed by arthritis diagnosed shortly after the 2011 Christchurch earthquake and, in the final year of her life, inflammatory bowel disease.

We needed more than traditional veterinary care and I began my path to becoming a professional canine massage therapist, fitness trainer and rehab professional.  Along the way, I studied dog behaviour and training with the Best Friends Animal Society in Utah and became NZ’s first Fear Free certified rehab professional in 2018.  In 2023, I completed my Certified Canine Fitness Trainer (CCFT) qualification with the University of Tennessee.

Professional development is a cornerstone of my practice and a commitment I make to both myself and my customers.

I am particularly passionate and concerned about the proliferation of online-only qualifications (where the student is never properly and personally supervised by a qualified tutor).  Many of these courses claim to be certification courses that are recognised in NZ; they are often marketed through sponsored posts on social media.   Because the student does not have to travel, these courses appeal to prospective students.  I encourage you to read my blog post We have to talk about qualifications to assist you in understanding the importance of in-person learning.

Here is my CV and list of professional development.  When you read it, please look for this symbol   It designates all of the in-person education and volunteering I have completed.

In January 2023, I was interviewed by Gina McKenzie of Plains FM for her Thrive – Inspiring Women podcast. This was one of the most thorough interviews I have had during my career, covering my practice and qualifications, Fear Free, anxiety and pain in dogs, diet types and other topics. Click the arrow below to listen to the show.

In December 2019, I was interviewed for the Dogs of New Brighton podcast.  In Part I,  I answer questions about my qualifications and practice and explain what occurred during Jess the Dog’s massage.  In Part 2, I discuss Fear Free techniques, why I use a massage table, and the legal status of physiotherapy on animals in New Zealand.  We also talk about responsible dog ownership and our Birthday Club.

You can listen to the 2010 Radio New Zealand Spectrum documentary about my practice here.

Ready to book an appointment?

In-home consults are booked from 1 pm to 7 pm Monday to Friday and 9 am to 3 pm on selected Saturdays

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Greyhound Massage and Stretching Online

There are many greyhounds around the world and most of them can't come to Christchurch to attend our greyhound massage and stretching half-day workshop. So, we filmed a class and designed an online course for you. There are downloads, videos to watch for practice and even a relaxation exercise for owners. We've fast-tracked this course for those around the world in quarantine for Covid-19. Treat your greyhound and yourself by learning new skills. There is also an optional add-on for review of your technique by submitting videos, or through a Skype or Zoom consultation.