Massage is being used to alleviate the physical and emotional stress of exotic animals in captivity, from elephants to dolphins and penguins.
Lord knows I could use a massage. Work finds me chained to a computer, where my best efforts at ergonomics make little dent in the insidious strain that is all too common in the electronic age. My lower back constantly taunts that I have neither the proper posture nor the abdominal strength to prevent its aches.
Even though he’s received thousands of massages over the past decade, Nicholas is still a bit stiff. Albeit the horse’s body is clearly marked with locations of pressure points to help students learn equine massage, he’s the only one of 16 horses at Equissage they haven’t been able to loosen up. “We can’t get him to relax,” said owner and director Mary Schreiber. Of course, that’s probably because Nicholas is a life-size fiberglass horse used as a teaching aid.