Kurt, an adorable ginger and black guinea pig, was one of the earliest of my smaller furry clients, to show me that our little pets can remember and hold on to emotional and physical experiences. Kurt’s owners were keen for him to try Reiki healing, as a means of supporting his general wellbeing and happiness and to give him a little boost if he needed it. Kurt had lived with the same loving family since being chosen as a pup, with his companion Elvis.

Kurt was a little reserved at first about receiving Reiki and he sat a little way away from me, observing the lounge and his family watching him. Reiki is channelled through the palms of my hands and it started to flow as I tuned into the Reiki energy. Kurt was aware that something strange was happening with my hands as he came forward to sniff at them and to sit looking at them. I sat quietly with him, mentally communicating with him, offering him healing and waiting to see what he thought about the idea. After a few minutes, he came closer to me and sat between the palms of my hands, almost touching them. This for me, was a ‘yes, please’ to receiving Reiki.

Kurt’s reaction was not unusual, as I have found that many animals need time and patience to relax into receiving healing. I offer healing and then listen to the response from the animal. I have learned that animals know which type of healing they would like to receive as well! I am very open to a ‘no thank you’ and fortunately have other healing options that your pet can choose from, such as Animal Communication,  Transformational Bodywork Healing for Animals and Applied Zoopharmacognosy. I believe that it is extremely important to find the right combination for each individual animal. I have also found that it is important not to rush this process of choosing and acceptance, as there is usually an underlying reason for the initial reluctance and this soon became clear with Kurt.

As Reiki healing began to flow to Kurt, I immediately became aware of a tightness and pressure in my own chest. I felt as if I couldn’t breathe properly. My breathing felt very restricted, similar to when I have had a chest infection in the past. I felt that I was unable to take deep breaths to fully fill my lungs. This physical feeling came with a sense of panic and also of sadness. This probably sounds very strange, but I was pretty sure that this was not my own sudden manifestation of illness or allergy. As an animal intuitive, I often experience similar physical and emotional sensations, that are not my own, when I am offering healing to an animal.  I tuned in to these sensations and received confirmation that these feelings and sensations belonged to Kurt.

I asked Kurt’s owners if he had experienced any respiratory issues in the past. They were very surprised and related that Kurt had nearly died two years previously, of a respiratory illness. He had started to hibernate early, as a result of unexpected cold weather and had become very cold and unresponsive, needing emergency veterinary care.

As we talked, Kurt shuffled back towards my hands, seeking closer contact with the Reiki energy, although my hands were still not touching him. After about 5 minutes he took a huge breath and the sensation of restricted breathing lifted from me and from him, together with the feelings of sadness and panic. It seemed, to all of us witnessing it, that with the support of Reiki healing, Kurt had been able to let go of the negative emotions and memory associated with his past illness. He became extremely relaxed and his breathing became noticeably more regular. As Kurt accepted the Reiki healing he lay to one side, splaying out his legs, a sure sign of a relaxed guinea pig! He squeaked and then shuddered with every other breath that he took. His owner commented that he normally only squeaks when he is being stroked and we found it interesting that he was responding in this way, when my hands were away from his body, sending Reiki from a distance. He then yawned, reversed firmly into my hands, making full contact and fell asleep for about 20 minutes. When Kurt woke up he allowed me to place my hands on his tummy to send Reiki to this area, which again, showed great acceptance on his part. He quietly ‘chuttered’ all the while, which his owners said was one of Kurt’s ways of communicating contentment and enjoyment.

After his healing session, Kurt became very affectionate and had long cuddles with his owners. When he was put out in his outdoor enclosure, Kurt became frisky and playful and his owners commented that he hadn’t looked so lively for quite a while. He remained brighter and more communicative and his owners felt that he had really benefitted from his Reiki healing session.