The DVD, Tellington TTouch® for Happier, Healthier Cats promises to show viewers how to develop a closer bond with their favorite felines using Tellington TTouch. Does it deliver? You bet!
Using her study with Moshe Feldenkrais as the foundation upon which Tellington TTouch was built, Linda Tellington-Jones reveals the many ways in which simple loving touch can enhance essential nonverbal communication between you and your cat.
We often ask difficult things of our cats without realizing it–we ask them to submit to touch that can be threatening and at times painful. For example, pet cats visit the veterinarian for examinations and vaccinations, the groomer, and undergo nail clipping and de-clawing, among other often traumatic experiences. These events often include rides in the car, which can induce carsickness and fear of containment.
We understand the need for confinement and these kinds of touch, but our cats may not. Tellington-Jones shows viewers that, with a few minutes a day of mindful touch, we can prepare our cats for virtually all the handling they will receive by using the form of nonverbal communication known as Tellington TTouch.
Using a variety of cats who live in a single home, Tellington-Jones demonstrates TTouch at work on a number of different feline issues. From behavioral to physical health and trauma related problems, this video shows Tellington-Jones using TTouch for a broad range of issues common to cats and other house pets. You can help your cat find greater comfort, sociability, and a better quality of life. It is essential that you consult your veterinarian before undertaking any form of home care for your cat. However, armed with these skills, owners are no longer dependent solely on wellness practitioners.
• Stiffness and arthritis in older cats
• Post surgery
• Fear of the veterinarian and groomer (including immunizations, vet procedures, and nail clipping)
• Fear of containment and restraint
• Dislike or fear of being handled
• Introduction of a new cat into household
• Transition to dying
Other interesting and useful tools include using a towel wrap and the Tellington TTouch wand for engaging a shy cat in play as an introduction to touch. These techniques increase both the cats’ sense of play and range of safety. The sessions are fascinating to watch.
Throughout the demonstrations, Tellington-Jones stresses the importance of the aspect of preparation in the care of our pets. Loving owners spend a great deal of time caring for their cats but often fail to prepare them adequately for experiences that need not be unpleasant. With the TTouches and techniques demonstrated in this video, viewers can do their homework during daily petting sessions.
In addition to basic instruction on how to do the TTouch*, Tellington-Jones introduces:
• Noah’s March, the respectful, comforting stroke many pet owners use instinctively to greet and comfort their animals. This stroke is used as an introduction to a TTouch session, to comfort a cat when s/he becomes agitated, and at the end of a TTouch session.
• Raccoon Touch, the small circles with the tips of the fingers
• The value of toning or crooning to cats as your work with them
• Lying Leopard TTouch, very soft circles with the supple hand
• Clouded Leopard TTouch, very soft circles with the cupped hand in the shape of a paw
The video follows each cat through a series of short (a few minutes each) TTouch sessions. Descriptions and feedback from their owner helps viewers understand the possible roots of the cats’ problems, as well as to gauge their progress. One of the advantages of viewing sequential sessions is the ability to see the cats’ reactions and changes in their behavior from session to session. Within the framework of a single, five-minute, introductory session, several of the cats show obvious improvement in their willingness to be handled or TTouched in areas where they previously showed pain or refused contact. Tellington-Jones uses this opportunity to reiterate an important message: feline behaviors and attitudes are often influenced by hidden discomfort.
Each subsequent TTouch session, in which Tellington-Jones patiently works closer to any problem area, shows clearly not only improvement in specific pain and behavioral issues but also in relaxation and willingness to be handled.
There are benefits to practicing gentle restraint and comforting, soothing touch with your cat at times when it’s not necessarily their idea. As preparation for the times in their lives as pets when others will have to hold them and touch them, Tellington TTouch can provide a toolbox full of techniques for practice. I highly recommend this DVD, especially in conjunction with the book, Getting in TTouch with Your Cat: A Gentle Approach to Influencing Behavior and Health.
Warning: the side effects of using Tellington TTouch include improved nonverbal communication between human and feline, increased time spent together, and a sense of appreciation and wonder at the opportunity to share our lives with cats.
© 2009 enlightened horsemanship through touch
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