TTouch Therapy

By Tammy Hunter, DVM; Steve Marsden, DVM ND MSOM LAc DiplCH AHG, Shawn Messonnier, DVM and Cheryl Yuill, DVM, MSc, CVH

What is it TTouch?

TTouch is a form of touch therapy devised and popularized in 1978 by Linda Tellington Jones, an equestrian with a long-standing interest in massage, training, and rehabilitation therapy techniques. TTouch is a simple, light massage technique in which the practitioner uses a clockwise circular motion of the fingers on the skin of the patient.

TTouch is marketed as a means of counteracting reflexive adverse behaviors in animals and was initially developed to facilitate the training of horses. For a fee, one can obtain certification in TTouch animal training approaches through books and specialized TTEAM courses offered by Linda Tellington Jones' organization.

The specific hand movement described above is considered by Tellington Jones to be a non-habitual stimulus to animals that raises the animal's awareness of their immediate environment enough that they will cease to respond reflexively to the handler and be more amenable to learning new behaviors and tasks. Developers of TTouch assert that this change of consciousness corresponds with a change in brain wave activity, although this claim has not been independently verified in the scientific literature.

On which species of animals is TTouch practiced regularly?

TTouch was originally developed to address equine behavior and training problems, but has been applied to many other species, including dogs, cats, and humans.

Who practices TTouch and do I need a referral?

VTTouch practitioners are certified through a specialized course offered only through Tellington Jones.

What conditions are most often treated with TTouch?

TTouch practitioners believe that many behavior problems such as anxieties, phobias and fear aggression ccan be helped with TTouch therapy, but there is no clear evidence to support this.

How successful is TTouch?

Effectiveness of TTouch varies, depending on the training of the practitioner, the animal receiving treatment, the condition being treated, and the regularity and consistency with which TTouch is applied. When the circumstances of training are ideal, practitioners claim that TTouch is very successful in relieving anxiety in most pets.

How safe is TTouch?

There are no known side effects of TTouch.

Can TTouch be combined with other alternative veterinary therapies?

TTouch can be combined with any other alternative veterinary therapy used to help manage anxiety-related disorders in animals.

Related Articles