Monday, February 27, 2012

More TTouch for Sandy

On the day Sandy met her new Dad, she was scheduled to go to her second TTouch session as well. Since the meeting went so well, I thought it would be great for him to come along and watch. When he agreed to indulge us Takoma Park hippies with our wacky New Age ideas, I knew this guy was a keeper. 

This time Pam had us work in the bathroom so Sandy would have a smaller space to feel compelled to explore. Though there was a lot of sniffing about at first, she settled down a lot more quickly this time! Pam was also happy to find that her little prunie nose was less squished up and tense. 

She worked all over her face again, then moved down to her tail and butt. A firm hand on the sacrum to allow Sandy to feel that part of her body. 

Pam said there was a lot of heat coming from her sacrum. A sign of all the tension being released.

Pam said that in addition to the nose and face, unsettled dogs often hold tension in their tails as well. So she devoted some time to rotating the tail, and waving it up and down like a little sine wave. 

Then Pam lifted each paw and rotated it. She noted that in a balanced dog, the remaining three paws would adjust when the fourth one was lifted. But Sandy lost her balance!  


A few of you have asked if there are good books out there on TTouch so you can explore it yourselves. There are several, which you can find on the website of the founder of TTouch, Linda Tellngton-Jones. My favorite is called Unlock Your Dog's Potential: How to Achieve a Calm and Happy Canine, by Sarah Fisher. It is full of great pictures and clear explanations on how to use this fantastic therapeutic technique. I found so much in this book that is directly applicable to my little canine projects. Consider this, apropos of both Sandy and Fozzie:
...many animals improve in their behavior and in their ability to operate in a calm and focused mode once tension in the mouth is reduced....Dogs with tension around the muzzle may also bark, drink, pant and mouth excessively, and may show a particular obsession with food, toys, and other articles. They may be quick to arouse and prone to hyperactive behavior. They can be slow to mature mentally and emotionally. They may be boisterous, pushy and over the top and may alternate between being totally full on and fast asleep. If forced beyond their comfort zone...they may mouth hard and/or grab the handler's clothing or the lead. 
There are so many things in this book that had me in wonderment that the things I experience with my dogs are relatively common problems, and problems with solutions--or at least practices that may help. 

So great to learn new ways to help a little ungrounded bundle of dogness like Sandy, as she is not the first... I have had, and will unlikely be the last! 

As Sandy's new Dad has said he may be trying out some fostering once Sandy settles in, I'm sure he'll be putting the info to good use too. 

That's what we like to hear!


  1. I've recently started reading Control Unleashed by Leslie McDevitt and it often mentioned TTouch. I'll be keep an eye out for that book as I really think my puppy Kobi could benefit from it.

    1. I love this book too! These two together compile a reading list for a lovely, nontraditional, holistic approach to managing and helping reactive and uneasy dogs, methinks...

  2. Thank you for posting this information! I just bought the Sarah Fisher book :)

  3. Thanks for the info, I'm thinking there is a chocolate lab that might just benefit from this type of therapy!

  4. Yay Sandy and her new dad. You did good Kirsten.

  5. So interesting. So many rescue dogs have built up tension just from the transition they've gone through. I think this is true for Ruby. I'll have to check this out further. Thanks!

  6. We have just got this book. Hoping that this will help my little Dexter too.

  7. we are definitely going to check out the book. We need to calm my Lily
    Benny & Lily

  8. You described Morgan pretty closely, except for the fact that she doesn't mouth us or bite our clothes. She's definitely our "problem child" but we've been working a lot with her. T-Touch is something I've never had experience with, but I may have to look and see if any of those books are available at the bookstore or for my e-reader!

  9. Thanks for explaining Sandys is so interesting. Sarah Fishers book added to my reading list.
    Big nose pokes
    The Thuglets


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