Dog massage school owner and massage therapist Laura Smith was excited when she heard about the popularity of dog massages in the US.
The 29-year-old from Sydney was working as a massage therapist in Australia, and had recently started working in the United States.
“I thought, ‘wow, this is a real thing, and people are using it,'” Smith told NBC News.
“It’s really a beautiful thing, I’m really happy to be involved in it.”
The company, which sells dog massage classes, is based in San Francisco and has more than a dozen locations in the Bay Area, from San Francisco to Santa Clara, and is currently looking to expand to the other states in the country.
Smith said she has found a few local massage schools that cater specifically to dogs.
“They are a little bit different,” she said.
“I would be hesitant to recommend them, but I think they are very well-respected in the pet community.”
The San Francisco Bay Area has a large population of pet dogs, and it’s easy to find a dog massage school with an area with a large number of pet owners.
“There are a lot of good dog massage schools in the area, so I think that would definitely be an option for us,” Smith said.
The owners of the San Francisco dog massage center told NBC Bay Area that they have been very impressed with the positive response from the customers.
“The majority of the people who have gotten the dog massagers have been happy with their experiences and have recommended us to others,” San Francisco-based pet massage therapist Ashley Pfeffer said.
Smith has a dog named Bella, and says she knows that Bella will get a massage when she arrives at the massage school, but she’s also looking forward to learning more about how to use her body.
“Bella has been very responsive, and has responded well to the massage, so we’re hoping she will learn some of the basics about massage from our instructor,” Pfefer said.
For Smith, who said she’s never had a massage experience before, it’s a great opportunity to learn how to get better at it.
“This is something that I’ve always wanted to try, so it’s exciting to be able to be a part of this,” Smith told ABC News.