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Meet Gene Rukavina of Dancing Dog Massage

Today we’d like to introduce you to Gene Rukavina.

Thanks for sharing your story with us Gene. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
My earliest childhood memory is being in the company of a dog, and they have been my spirit guides ever since. When I was a veterinary technician student, I learned early on that dogs respond in a very positive way to my touch. I also started seeing ads for animal massage in various veterinary trade magazines. The seed was planted, but it wasn’t until many years later that I felt like I was ready to build my own business around my love for all things dog. In August of 2015, I launched Dancing Dog Massage and it has been steadily growing ever since.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc. – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
Canine Massage Therapy is still a novel concept to many dog owners. Plus, there aren’t that many people out there offering such a service for dogs. On the one hand, it’s great being a trail blazer, on the other hand, it can be frustrating at times trying to break through to skeptical dog owners. It all comes down to education and awareness. Thankfully, many people in the greater LA area have experienced the benefits of massage for themselves, so it’s just a matter of showing how those same benefits also apply to our beloved canine companions. it all comes down to word of mouth, exposure, and networking within the greater LA dog community.

So, as you know, we’re impressed with Dancing Dog Massage – tell our readers more, for example what you’re most proud of as a company and what sets you apart from others.
Dancing Dog Massage specializes in providing professional canine massage therapy, as well as a wide range of home care services for dogs. Each canine massage therapy session is a combination of aromatherapy, stretching, touch, myofascial, deep tissue, sports and Swedish massage that is tailored to the individual needs of the dog. Clinically tested music is also played to calm the dog during the massage session. What I am most proud of is the increased awareness on the myriad benefits of canine massage therapy that Dancing Dog Massage has brought to the greater LA dog community and beyond. I believe what sets me apart is threefold: I have been in the company of dogs my entire life, I am a Registered Veterinary Technician (RVT) in CA, and I am a Certified Canine Massage Therapist (CCMT).

So, what’s next? Any big plans?
My plans for the future are to continue growing Dancing Dog Massage, through increased awareness, networking, and word of mouth. One exciting expansion that is in the works is called Pup and Parent Pampering. I have partnered with an amazing human massage therapist. The concept is to have human and dog bond through the shared experience of massage therapy. It will be a 30-minute session, where the human remains fully clothed on a massage table, while their dog is massaged using a cushioned mat on the floor by their side. So many people have expressed their desire for a massage after watching me massage their dog. With Pup and Parent Pampering, that wish will become a reality!


  • Puppy Dog Massage (dogs less than 1 year old) Up to 30 minutes – $30 ($10 discount on minimum rate)
  • Small Dog Massage (dogs weighing less than 25 lbs) 30 minutes – $40
  • Medium Dog Massage (dogs weighing 25 – 50 lbs) 40 minutes – $50
  • Large Dog Massage (dogs weighing 51 – 100 lbs) 50 minutes – $60
  • Extra Large Dog Massage (dogs weighing over 100 lbs) 60 minutes – $70

Contact Info:

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