What is Animal Reiki?

Reiki is an ancient Japanese healing practise and was rediscovered by a Japanese doctor called Mikao Usui.

The word Reiki is Japanese that translates to Rei – Universal and Ki – life force: the “Universal life force”. This energy is essential for life flowing through everything and such determines the state of our health. It can also translate to our vital essence in Western culture or mauri in Maori.

Reiki involves the channelling of natural healing energy from its divine source (whatever that may be for you), through the practitioner and to our clients; both human and animal. This energy flows through the practitioner's crown chakra (on top of the head), down through our palms and flows into their body via the chakra’s.

Much the same as humans, our pets have chakras too:

  • Crown
  • Third eye
  • Throat
  • Heart
  • Solar plexus
  • Sacral
  • Root

Our chakras are the main energy centres of our body. They are thought to be disks of energy that “should” stay open, balanced and aligned. If our chakras are opened then energy can run through them freely, and harmony exists between the physical body, mind, and spirit. Each chakra corresponds to major organs, systems, bones, muscles, nerves and emotions. When a chakra is blocked then the corresponding organ or system (etc) will have illness or problems. The word Chakra is a Sanskrit word that means wheel.

Reiki is an intelligent energy that has a mind of its own and goes to where it is needed. Reiki practitioners do not cause or make the energy, they instead act as a vessel where Reiki can flow to the areas that need it.

There is no way that a client can overdose on too much Reiki when the client has had enough, they choose to stop the flow of energy. It is up to them at the end of the day if they choose to accept Reiki or not. However, permission should always be sort. 

Some of the benefits of Reiki for our animals are:

  • Removes emotional blocks or trauma that are affecting your pet’s ability to live their best life
  • Reduces stress and anxiety
  • Promotes and sense of peace and relaxation
  • Enhances well-being
  • Boosts their immune system
  • Promotes a quicker recovery after surgery or injury
  • Can help to ease pain both physically, mentally and emotionally

Our animals are unable to communicate with us the same way we communicate with other humans. They can find it hard to be understood and may also find it hard to understand our communication and actions which can lead to problems. However, our pets are very in tune with energy and feel it more intently than what we do. You may have noticed it when your pet may take a particular dislike to someone; it all comes down to the energy that your pet is getting off them. That is why animals are so receptive to Reiki because they can feel that the energy is healing, loving and positive.

A Reiki session for an animal is a bit different than for a human. Some animals may not want to jump onto a massage table, others may not want to be touched. Like with humans, every animal is different and should be treated as an individual.

Reiki for animals can be hands-on or from a distance; either way works the same as the energy will go where it is needed. The way that I do it is by sitting on the floor or if it's a farm animal, then at a distance where they are comfortable. I always allow them to approach me if they choose and always have room for them to move away if they want. I ask if the animal would like to join me in having some Reiki and make it known to them that they can take as much Reiki as they wish. This lets them know that they have a choice on how much Reiki they want. And sometimes that may only be 5 minutes which is absolutely fine; Reiki cannot be forced on to an animal that either does not want it or only requires a small amount. Once the session starts, the animal may choose to approach me and may also give me an indication that it is okay for me to touch them. They may go into a deep sense of relaxation and fall asleep. Others may stay awake through the whole session and some may present you with a certain area that THEY would like you to focus on; this is very common with horses. I never time the sessions as the animal is very good at letting you know that the session is over; they may wake up and want to play or they may walk right out of the room once they have taken the energy they need. Once this happens the session is closed and anything that came up during the session is relayed back to the caregiver of the animal. Future sessions are arranged and the animal is left to utilise the energy as they wish.

Reiki can be a bit hard for some people to get as they cannot see anything happening as you do with a massage treatment. The caregiver needs to trust that the healing energy has gone where it is needed and they may not notice anything till an hour or even a few days after – the energy works in the way that it needs to and sometimes this may not be in the way that a caregiver wants. This is when you must always remember that it's up to your pet to decide what they need and what for.

Animals respond very well to Reiki as they are more in touch with that side of sensing and feeling energy than what we are. Animal Reiki is a great therapy stand-alone or as a complementary treatment alongside conventional medicine. However, it is not a cure on its own and veterinary advice must always be sort first.

I hope that has sparked your interest in this amazing therapy and given you some insight on how Reiki could benefit your pet. I am a trained level 3 practitioner and have been offering Reiki to the many animals I have worked with over the years. If this is something you are wanting to find out more on, then please do not hesitate to contact us here at Paw Face. There will be future workshops on Animal Reiki, being offered soon – Keep an eye out!

Ngā Mihi Nui

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