• Yes, they do. Animals and children tend to be more opened to receiving healing energy than most adults. Sometimes, they can be a little nervous at first, so with some animals, I treat them from a few inches away, or even from the other side of the room until they get a sense of what it is and become more comfortable. That is usually all it takes. Some of my animal clients will immediately lay down and close their eyes as soon as I walk in the door to let me know they are ready to start.
How often should my animal receive Reiki?
• It really depends on what is going on with your animal. For animals that have major health issues, weekly treatments can be very beneficial. It helps keep their bodies strong and assists them in dealing with whatever their body is fighting to overcome. With some animals, I might work with them for 3-4 weeks to work through an emotional issue that has manifested itself physically. After that, they may not need another treatment for some time. When animals are relatively healthy, I may only see them once every 3-4 months. I think of these as “tune-ups” to help them maintain their health.
Have you noticed a connection between what animals and their owners are experiencing physically and emotionally?
• Most definitely! Animals pick up on everything we are thinking and feeling. Often times, they hold the stress their owners are experiencing and they can have physical problems as a result. I am not placing any blame on the owners here. Animals believe it is their JOB to take care of us, and they feel it is their responsibility to help shoulder our burdens. Talking through these things with animals is an important part of what I do. I find that owners often experience their own healing in the work I am doing with their animals.
Can Reiki do any harm?
• No, I do not believe it is possible. Reiki is “Life force energy” – simply put, it is love energy. How could love ever hurt an animal? I know, many of you reading this may be thinking, “Hey love DOES hurt and it has before” but we’re talking about pure love energy here, which is not always present in our human relationships.
Is it hard to work with animals when they are about to die?
• No, because animals are not afraid of death at all. They are so peaceful about it. The only worry they have is wondering if their owners are going to be OK. I work with animals and their guardians to make sure they are able to say everything they need to say to one another. It is actually an honor to be a part of such a beautiful process. Do I cry? Yes, of course I do, because I also feel what the owners are feeling, but I feel peaceful as well, knowing that the animal is being honored as they deserve to be.
How do I keep my animal healthy?
• I believe that it starts with a good foundation. Good food (high quality dog food, fresh vegetables, etc), good water (filtered not tap), plenty of exercise (so they don’t become over weight) and lots of love. I believe all of those things combined will help keep their immune system strong and if their immune system stays strong, they will be able to fight off anything that comes along. I had the honor of working closely with one of the best holistic vets around, Dr. Walt McCall, and I learned a tremendous amount from him. One of the things he taught me was that our bodies and our animal’s bodies are meant to heal themselves and they can do that if the immune system is strong.
• Beyond the important foundation pieces (food, water, exercise, love), I believe the other thing we need to pay attention to is energy. If the energy in their bodies gets blocked because of stress or trauma or any other number of things, those blocks in energy can interfere with the immune system and eventually manifest themselves in physical problems if they are never addressed. If energy is moving freely in their bodies and their immune system stays strong, they will be able to deal with just about anything that comes along.
How do I know when something is wrong with my animal?
• I have learned from Dr. McCall that we need to pay attention to the most basic functions. Are they eating? Are they drinking? Are they going to the bathroom? Are they moving around? Are they sleeping well? Animals let us know what’s going on with them through these basic functions. So, if the answer is “No” to any of those questions, it is time to take a closer look. What is normal for your animal may be different than someone else’s animal so you need to know your animal well enough to know what is “normal” for them.
• If something doesn’t feel quite right, if what you are seeing isn’t “normal”, trust it. I’m not suggesting that you rush out and get $1,000 worth of tests done but do take a closer look. Don’t overlook what is going on around your home environment. Animals are very sensitive creatures and they react and respond to things more than most people realize. What changes have occurred? Has a child gone away to college? Has your routine changed? Are you working longer hours? Traveling more? Dating someone new? These things, and many others, can all affect your animal.
• My German Shepherd used to get sick every March. She would be up in the middle of the night throwing up, unable to keep her food down. It took me three years to figure out that this “sickness” of hers correlated with the stress I experienced each March as I attempted to prepare for the meeting with my tax guy. Taxes stressed me out, in part because I was never as organized as I should have been so “getting ready” for my tax appointment usually involved two solid weekends of tearing the house apart looking for receipts. I think I also had resistance on some deep level about giving my hard earned money to the government, which added to the stress. Once I figured out that Lucky’s “March illness” may be a result of my “Tax preparation stress” I decided to make some changes. I put some new systems in place to keep myself better organized throughout the year, so that preparing for my tax appointment look only an afternoon. I also put some effort into making my peace with how much of my income I was going to be sharing with the government. I’m happy to report that since that time, Lucky’s “March illness” never reoccurred.
Most of all, we just need to stay aware. We need to watch our animals and notice if there are changes in their eating or drinking habits, if they are sleeping more, or if they are less interested in exercising. They are trying to communicate with us all the time, to let us know what is going on with them. You don’t need to be an animal communicator to receive those messages from them. They do a pretty good job of communicating, if we’re willing to pay attention.