Pets Respond to Reiki

“The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.”
Mahatma Gandhi

According to Anatole France, “Until one has loved an animal, a part of one’s soul remains unawakened.” Pets love us unconditionally and usually do not ask for much in return other than love, providing them with food and a comfortable home. Performing regular Reiki treatments on our pets is one way we can show them love and give them a relaxing healing at the same time.

When a new pet comes into the family, it is important to find out as much information as possible about this pet by doing research into their habits, how they act and re-act to certain things, the noises they make to communicate and what is considered a normal behavior or routine. Pets quickly become an important part of the family and make us aware that they have feelings, aches and pains or emotional needs that require nurturing and regular attention. Treating a new pet with Reiki as soon as possible is a wonderful way to help them adjust so that they can be happy in their new environment.

Like humans, pets can experience disruptions in their energy fields. By being mindful of our pets’ different characteristics and moods, we can assist them in maintaining a level of balance, peace and contentment. Reiki not only calms a pet and makes them feel relaxed, but also helps with any emotional healing or unwanted habits they may have developed. Often a pet will let us know that something is not right with them and that they need a little extra attention, tender loving care, and quite possibly a full Reiki treatment.

Many pets sense our feelings and will react according to what is going on within our households. If a change in their routine is going to occur, a pet Reiki session can help them accept the adjustment. Some other reasons to give Reiki to our pets could include:

  • rebalancing the energy system and providing relaxation
  • helping to calm a nervous or an emotional habit
  • aiding with a healing when they are receiving medication for an illness or injury
  • strengthening the connection between the pet and the owner
  • reducing anxiety or stress level
  • maintaining their level of contentment and peace
  • healing physical ailments to ease pain
  • restoring and maintaining good eating and sleeping patterns
  • boosting their immune systems, especially when they are sick
  • calming them before going to the vet’s, or on a trip
  • comforting them after their shots or an operation
  • aiding the pet in accepting a new member in the family, including other pets
  • providing them with the loving and healing of Reiki energy

Erika gives loving Reiki energy to her horse Valentine.Erika gives loving Reiki energy to her horse Valentine.

Books have been written about proper Reiki techniques and animal Reiki etiquette. However, when it is our own pet, we automatically have a very special bond with this member of our family and just seem to know their specific needs. Each pet is different even when they are receiving a healing. It is important to rely on our intuitive guidance and to pay attention to how our pet is reacting to the energy that is being sent. For some pets, either because they cannot be handled, as with fish or frogs, or they do not respond well to touch, beaming the energy works very well. Using the Distant Healing symbol, the Emotional/Mental symbol, and the Power symbol will help in beaming Reiki to our pets. We can also send distant Reiki when we are away from our pets.

With hands-on treatments, often the spine area, head and heart, or joints in the legs are very receptive to Reiki. There is usually a look of complete contentment and relaxation in the pet’s eyes and body when a Reiki treatment is in progress. Often the pets will become so relaxed that they just fall into a deep sleep. Some Reiki sessions will be longer than others and will depend on the convenience of time from their Reiki owner or the inclination of the pet to receive Reiki. However, even the shortest of treatments will provide beneficial effects to the pet. It is very rewarding to see or sense the gratitude that a pet displays after a Reiki treatment.

Our cat Clio receives Reiki from daughter Danielle.Our cat Clio receives Reiki from daughter Danielle.

Some pets are very set in their ways and like a scheduled time, not only for feeding, but also for cuddling with their owners and for receiving Reiki. They may have a special blanket or place in the home where they will receive the treatment. Our cat Clio, has become a “Reiki junkie” the past few years and insists, by meowing loudly or following us around, on receiving Reiki every morning and evening on top of our daughter Danielle’s bed on her own cat blanket. She will let us know where she needs the Reiki by standing and turning her body towards our hands. She loves to receive it on her head and over her eyes and will often push her head into our hands. While receiving the energy she purrs and when she’s had enough, she jumps off the bed and goes on about her business.

Teaching our children to give the gift of a Reiki treatment to their pets affords them the opportunity to experience first hand an incredible bonding with the animal. It allows the children to be present in the moment with their pets. They learn to be more compassionate and about giving and receiving unconditional love. When children provide a Reiki healing to their pets they can calm themselves down from their own daily stresses by focusing on their pet’s needs. Our daughter Stefanie says that it provides her with an emotional therapy time, and Danielle says that she’s learned how to let go and be in a meditative state in her mind when giving Reiki to our cat Clio. In turn, the pets continue to provide more love and companionship to the children and always look forward to the next healing, cuddling, or grooming session. Pets love to receive these acts of kindness and togetherness from their owners.

Neil and pet ferrets.Neil and pet ferrets.

In my Reiki classes, I encourage students, both adults and children, to incorporate their pets into their practice times using the Reiki energy and symbols they’ve learned. It is often very easy to get a pet to co-operate while the novice Reiki practitioner becomes aware of how the energy flows through their hands. Practicing on a pet also helps the student develop confidence in their healing work. Our pets will let us know through their actions what they think of a Reiki session.

The photographs that accompany this article are of my Reiki students giving Reiki to their pets. When Neil’s ferret had a bladder infection, he was able to administer daily Reiki to help ease the pain while the medication took effect. Erika, another Reiki student, gives some loving Reiki energy to her horse Valentine just before setting out on a riding lesson. I have treated Valentine and know how she loves to be visited in the barn for Reiki sessions. She will often lay her head on our shoulders and stand quietly letting the energy fill her body. Other horses in the barn will also come up to their gates and nuzzle up to us or lick our hands. They respond quickly to the Reiki energy and are very open to receiving it.

Graham, Cameron, Mikayla and Zeus.Graham, Cameron, Mikayla and Zeus.

Siblings Mikayla, Graham and Cam can sense more heat in their dog Zeus’s ear when it is infected and provide hands on healing sessions to help reduce the pain and inflammation. Zeus stays on the floor absorbing the energy and looks at the children with big, melting eyes of gratitude. Many of my students tell me that it brings them much joy to provide healing treatments to their pets, and they look forward to it. They become aware of and understand their pet’s needs better and feel fulfilled in being able to help out in this way.

Pets respond very well to a Reiki treatment when they are injured or in pain once they have been accustomed to receiving it. They know how it feels and they allow us to move the energy through their body without fear. As our pets age they require a bit more attention with regular energy healings. Often Reiki eases the pain they are experiencing, whether in their joints or other parts of the body, or when they are experiencing pain of an emotional nature. At the end of their lives, a pet’s transition can be eased with the warmth and calming they receive through Reiki.

Pets fill our lives with joy and our homes with love, companionship, caring and compassion. That’s also what Reiki is all about! Giving our pets regular Reiki treatments allows us to reciprocate this gift of love.

This article appeared in the Spring 2009 issue of the Reiki News Magazine.