Canine Bowen Therapy

What is it ?


Canine Bowen Therapy is a hands-on remedial treatment which works over joints, ligaments, soft tissue, tendons and fascia to stimulate the body's own natural healing process. These gentle yet powerful moves  involve light, but firm pressure on the body, in order to balance the Autonomic Nervous System. 

The moves are interspersed with short breaks to allow the dog's body to assimilate the work and start the process of healing and rebalancing.


There is no cracking of joints, hard manipulation and no massaging.

It is based on the principles of 'The Bowen Technique', which originated from Australia during the 1950's and was brought to the U.K in the 1990's. It's a sucessful Human therapy, for which I am also fully qualified to practice.


It was adapted for use on Canines by Behaviourists & Trainers (also Bowen Human Therapists) Ron & Sally Askew in 2001, who integrated their findings into the Canine behaviour & Rehabilitation work with great success.




How does it work?


Research is ongoingbut in brief, Canine Bowen moves and procedures aid to reset the body to heal itself by activating, through the nervous and endocrine systems amongst others, the following mechanisms:


  • Stretch reflex: Most moves are done either at the origin, insertion or belly of muscles where receptors are located, informing the nervous system on the state of tension in the musculotendinous tissue. These receptors are stimulated during the Canine Bowen moves which changes the stimulus received by the nervous system. This can change a pain/muscle spasm loop.
  • Joint proprioceptors: All moves done around a joint directly affect the joint capsule and ligaments that are richly innervated with proprioceptors. Here again, stimulus will be received by the nervous system, inviting normalization of the joint function without the need for forceful manipulation. 
  • Fascia: Each Canine Bowen move is done at the level of the superficial fascia and affects the relationship between the fascia and the nerve, muscle, tendon or ligament being mobilized. Fascia plays a major role in muscle co-ordination, postural alignment and overall structure and function. All of these are negatively affected when the fascia stiffens, contracts, torques or dehydrates. Following a Canine Bowen treatment it is not uncommon to see adhesions loosen up and posture and mobility improve without harsh mobilization or stretching.
  • Segmental viscerosomatic spinal reflexes: Some Canine Bowen moves engage these reflexes. They produce referred reactions to the internal organs through stimulation of the skin, muscles and nerves.
  • Harmonic vibration or resonance model: Canine Bowen moves set up vibrational patterns which bring the body back into balance and harmony.
  • Lymphatics: Some Canine Bowen procedures activate draining of the lymphatic system which in turn stimulates the immune system.
  • Detoxification is often initiated during a Canine Bowen session, thereby improving the body's ability to function at a cellular level.



What does it treat ......



Conditions often presented at Canine Bowen Therapy sessions include....



  • Allergies and Skin conditions


  • Arthritis and Muscular Sprains & Strains


  • Back Problems.


  • Lameness and other Gait problems


  • Hip and Elbow dysplacia.




Canine Bowen Therapy may also help....




  • Working or Competition Dogs.
  • Dogs that pull on the lead
  • Aggression and other Behavioural problems.
  • Stress & Anxiety disorders.
  • Cystitis & Urinary disorders.
  • Recurrent Ear problems.
  • Sciatica.
  • Acute injury.


and also.....




  • Chronic conditions and degenerative disease - helping to improve the dog’s quality of life.
  • Rescue/re-homed dogs - relaxation of tension caused by earlier stress and trauma.
  • Pre– and post-operative surgery - assisting recovery times.
  • Fear-based anxiety - such as fireworks and thunderstorms.







However, we do not claim to 'cure' conditions, our aim is to facilitate healing & rebalancing.


What to expect...



During your Dog's first Canine Bowen Therapy session I will take a full case history of their past and present health problems, including any accidents and injuries, and discuss any concerns you have. A typical session will last up to about an hour, this is to allow the Dog to relax, although the actual treatment time is around 20-30mins. You will need to stay with your Dog during treatment, it's usually best I come to treat your Dog in your home, where they will be more comfortable in their own surroundings.


I work 'with' your Dog, the therapy is never forced on them, they are free to walk away if they so wish – forcing the therapy upon the Dog will only serve to make them less receptive and will be counter-productive to the outcome. It is important to recognise and respect when the dog indicates it has received what they need.


It is possible that your Dog may not accept much therapy during their first treatment, as they may need time to trust and accept, this is fine, it is all a step in the right direction and you will likely find once the trust barrrier has been lowered they will want Canine Bowen Therapy, and will actually help guide me to the places they'd like me to work on.



Often, only one to three treatments at weekly intervals may be all that's required to achieve a notable change.


Periodic top ups are beneficial to those Dogs who are elderly, or have chronic conditions, or dogs used for working or competition.


Afterwards, you will be given 'Aftercare' advice on how to get the most benefit from Canine Bowen Therapy, particulary with regard to exercise and handling. Carring out this advice is an important part of the treatment and can have a enormous affect on the outcome.



This is Boswell & Tye from the RSPCA, they really enjoyed their treatments. 
Boswell, an American Bulldog, was recovering from a Cruciate Ligament injury. Looking at him you wouldn't think 15mins earlier he was bouncing around the room! Also Tye, a Staffy, was given some Canine Bowen due to the stress of his rehoming situation. 


Both beautiful gentle boys eased into the therapy very quickly, Dogs really do know what they need, and where they need it!

Just like us, Dogs sometimes need a little 'tweak' here and there, think of how you feel after some form of bodywork...usually relaxed, more mobile, more happy!

If you'd like your Dog to try Canine Bowen Therapy just get in touch and download a Vet referal form at the very bottom of this page. You'll find my leaflets at local Vets for more info.






What does Canine Bowen Therapy entail?

A session consists of small moves performed over key points of the body. You will see a rolling action of my fingers over soft tissue, muscle, tendons, ligaments and fascia. It is a gentle process, yet incredibly effective. Short breaks will be given throughout the session. The dog will also decide when to put a break in, allowing them time to process the changes within their body before returning for more, or letting me know that they've had enough.

Do I stay with my dog?

Always. This provides comfort for your dog and also allows you to be a part of the process. Your observations are also helpful. I do have a pen and notepad handy so the owner can write down questions or observations as I work, as it's best to keep distraction to a minimum whilst the Dog is being treated, this 'quiet time' speaks volumes in many respects! 

Do I need to fill in any forms?

Yes, first you will need to print off a Vet referal form at the bottom of this page and ask your vet to sign & stamp it. The stamp is very important as this proves what practice refered the Dog.
Then there is a Canine Consultation form that we will go through together which will include your Dog's current & past health conditions, their lifestyle, diet, amount of excercise, likes & dislikes etc. It is indepth, but this helps me build a picture of your Dog which will enable me to tailor their sessions accordingly.

Will my dog be on a table? Do they have their joints manipulated?

No.... Each Canine Bowen Therapy session is completed on the floor. We don't manipulate the Dog's body, or asks the dog to stand/sit/lay if they are not comfortable doing so.

How many sessions will it take?

Canine Bowen Therapy often works best with 3 sessions approx 1 week apart. This gives the body time to form a 'new pattern' especially if the symptoms have been in situ for some period of time. 
I will assess your dog at each visit, discuss your observations and create a next step plan. You are also given aftercare advice to help your Dog get the most out their treatment. It is very important that this is adhered to as the aftercare advice is just as important as the actual treatment.
The aim of Canine Bowen Therapy is to help bring your dog back to a healthy state of mobility, vitality and health, and possibly create a maintenance plan to help keep your Dog in peak condition

Will Canine Bowen Therapy diagnose my dogs mobility or any health conditions?

No. Medical diagnoses are always given by your Dog's vet. We work with your dogs veterinarian care to create a full circle health regime, feedback is sent to your vet so that this can be noted on their health file and keep up to date with their progress.

Canine Bowen Therapy fees within a 5 mile radius of Hexham:


£30 per treatment 


I also offer Clinics at Dog Training/Activity Centres for reduced rates if a minimum of 6 Dogs are in attendance. Bowen is great for keeping things supple for Agility Dogs, it's also a great stress reliever for Dogs with behavioural issues.
One common behavioural problem is stress, be it pysical or emotional. Reducing their stress helps them cope better.


Extra costs to cover travel outside of Hexham as follows:

1-5 miles outside of Hexham:      £5 on top of treatment

6-10 miles outside of Hexham:    £10 on top of treatment
11-15 miles outside of Hexham:    £15 on top of treatment
16-20 miles outside of Hexham:   £20 on top of treatment


***Some Pet insurance companies may cover Complementary Therapies, if you decide to claim on your insurance for this then payment is required first then you will be given a reciept in order to claim back your expenses.


Your form message has been successfully sent.
You have entered the following data:

Drop me a line or you can call me on 01434 674354 or 07939435827

Please correct your input in the following fields:
Error while sending the form. Please try again later.

Note: Fields marked with * are required




 Canine Bowen Technique is not a substitute for proper veterinary care, and should be used in conjunction with orthodox veterinary treatment. It is only available on veterinary referral. Please click the link below to download your referal form to be stamped & signed by your Vet.


Please download your Vet Referal Form here:
Canine Bowen Therapy Vet Referal Form.pd[...]
Adobe Acrobat document [263.2 KB]
Print | Sitemap
© Paws To Doors 2011-2021 - Any Part Of The Materials Available Through May Not Be Copied Or Reproduced In Whole Or In Part Or In Any Manner Without The Permission Of Michelle Hillier .Protected Under UK Copyright Law. Web Theft Content Scans Are Made Freqently.