Therapy for dogs using Trigger point and massage techniques

Heights Hospital for Animals

333 W. 20th St
Houston, TX 77008


Kat's promo pix  Kathleen Gallagher, BS

Hospital for Animals on 20th street now offers advanced techniques for management of pain in dogs.  Trigger point therapy is a method long used in humans for pain management . It is rapidly becoming popular within the dog community. 

What is a trigger point? 

In the most basic of definitions; it is a hypersensitive palpable nodule in the muscle tissue that is formed when muscle or connective tissue is damaged or compromised in some way.  Trigger points have been well documented to be a primary cause of pain.  The constant tension that trigger points cause can restrict circulation of the blood in the immediate area, as well as deprivation of oxygen and nutrients needed.     

Why or how do trigger points form?

Anything that compromises the muscle or connective tissue can cause a trigger point. 

  • Direct injury such as falling off of a couch or playing too rough with a playmate. 
  • Repetitive motion which can cause overused muscles; agility, flyball, sports dogs in general. 
  • Injury such as surgery on one of the limbs, severe arthritis or a leg amputation. Dogs carry 60% of their weight on the front limbs. If there is a leg that can no longer carry it's portion of the weight then the body has to shift the weight to the other 3 legs to compensate.  When that happens those muscles then go into the category of injury due to overuse.  In the case of leg amputation, it is extreme overuse since there is never relief for those muscles carrying the extra weight they are not intended to carry. 

How do we get rid of trigger points?

This is the good part.  Trigger points can be treated.  Kathleen has successfully completed Canine Trigger Point therapy, Advanced Trigger Point therapy for athletic dogs and Therapeutic Canine Massage, as well as, an advanced degree in Biomedical Science from Texas A&M University.

We are so excited to add this new service and to have an additional means of helping to manage discomfort in your pet.