Balance your dog’s energy with seasonal acupressure sessions

Balance your dog’s energy with seasonal acupressure sessions

Your dog’s energy shifts as the seasons change. These acupressure sessions will help him keep his Yang and Yin chi balanced as we move from summer into fall.

In ancient Chinese medicine, a balanced flow of life-promoting energy, called “chi”, is the key to health and longevity for our dogs (and us!). The trick is to sustain balanced chi during all seasons of the year. The simple acupressure sessions covered here can help you achieve this balance in your dog throughout the heat of summer and into the cooler days of autumn.

Midsummer energy

Summer is the most Yang time of the year. Yang is associated with heat, bright sun, long days and activity. Dogs eagerly express their Yang energy during the summer. They love to race along the beach, joyously barking at the waves. They frolic with complete abandon in parks and yards. It’s a time of warmth, high spirits and tremendous Yang chi.

As a result, we need to take steps to prevent our dogs from “burning out” with too much midsummer heat and activity. In order to balance those days filled with strong Yang energy, we have to make sure our dogs have access to Yin energy factors such as cool water, adequate rest at night, nourishing food, and quiet periods. In short, dogs need to drink, eat, sleep and have snuggle-time in order balance their summer day activities with Yin chi.

While relaxing with your dog, you can add a short acupressure session to help support his balance of Yin and Yang energy. By doing so, you will boost his physical and emotional ability to balance his own chi. His health depends on the balance of Yin and Yang because they are the two aspects of chi; and chi cannot flow harmoniously unless Yin and Yang are balanced. When chi is flowing well throughout the dog’s body, his immune system is strong. By using the “Cooling Acupressure Points” chart, you can help increase his Yin chi during midsummer.

How to do acupressure

If you are new to acupressure, or need a refresher on how to do it, read the following:

  • Place the soft tip of your thumb on an acupoint and exert light pressure.
  • Rest your other hand gently on the dog’s body.
  • Stay on each acupoint for a slow count of 20 before moving to the next point.

The acupressure points shown in the charts are on both sides of your dog’s body. Gently and lightly stimulate the points on one side, and repeat on the other.

Late summer and early autumn energy

The Chinese consider late summer and early autumn a fifth season. By the time we get into August and September, the nights are getting longer, and with every passing week, the chill lingers longer into the morning hours. The rich green of summer begins to pale. Grasses start to yellow and produce a smell of soft sweetness. Crops are mature and ready for harvest. In other words, the extreme Yang chi of summer is beginning to yield to Yin chi. Late summer and early autumn days and nights tend to be cooler and wetter, and sunlight is diminishing. We all start to slow down and spend more time inside.

By early evening, your dog might be content to eat his dinner and curl up on his bed rather than race around the garden as he did during high summer. His energy is shifting from Yang chi to Yin chi. To adapt to this seasonal shift, dogs need to retain more internal warmth in order to be balanced and healthy. This involves eating a bit more and having more time to rest. This seasonal transition means your dog has to incrementally store more warming Yang chi to balance the increasing chill in the environment. He can do this by keeping more of his Yang energy inside his body, rather than expending it with lots of activity the way he did earlier in the season.

By stimulating the acupoints in the “Warming Acupressure Points” chart, you can support your dog’s capacity to rebalance his chi and stay happy and healthy during the late summer and early autumn months of August and September. He’ll need more quiet time to help achieve this balance, so offering acupressure sessions is perfect. The acupressure points selected for this season are known to help increase internal warming Yang chi while facilitating the body’s ability to adapt to the cooling environment.

The purpose of giving your dog acupressure sessions is to maintain the harmonious flow of chi throughout his body, especially during seasonal changes. In summer, his body needs to be balanced to cope with heat and increased activity. In the latter part of the summer and the early fall, his body must adapt to the transition toward cooler temperatures and reduced activity. The acupressure sessions in this article can help maintain his balance and flow of chi during the summer and into the fall, while strengthening his immune system.

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Amy Snow is one of the authors of Acu-Cat: A Guide to Feline Acupressure, Acu-Dog: a Guide to Canine Acupressure and The Well-Connected Dog: A Guide to Canine Acupressure. Amy Snow, together with Nancy Zidonis own Tallgrass Publishers, which offers meridian charts for cats and dogs as well as manuals, DVDs and canine acupressure apps for mobile devices. They founded the Tallgrass Animal Acupressure Institute, offering hands-on and online training courses worldwide, including a Practitioner Certification Program ( or