Reiki and Animal Aromatics
The term Reiki (pronounced ray-key) comes from the Japanese words ‘rei’ meaning spirit and ‘key’ meaning energy. It is usually translated as Universal Life Force Energy. Anybody can be attuned to Reiki and learn how to transmit healing energy.
Reiki is a holistic healing system that treats the whole being, addressing problems at all levels: physical, mental, emotional and spiritual. It is gentle, painless, non-invasive and stress free. Reiki can cause no harm to any living thing. It goes to those issues most in need of healing, even those unknown to the cat’s caretaker.
Reiki is a powerful tool for emotional healing following trauma, abuse, neglect, fear and trust issues. For highly strung or nervous animals Reiki induces deep relaxation and reduces stress. This is why I wanted to learn Reiki. There were many cats at the Rescue Cattery where I used to work who were ‘emotionally traumatised’ and I desperately wanted to find a way to help them.
Cats are much more sensitive to energy than humans and sense the presence of Reiki energy immediately. The cat may look startled or stop in his tracks when he first feels the energy. He will usually stare at you intensely and may come and investigate your hands. If the cat is facing away from you when you first offer Reiki his ears will turn towards the direction of the energy and you will notice an increase in his breathing. This is an indication that the cat is willing to receive the Reiki healing.
When treating cats you really must remember to ask permission first. Anything less will be taken as an affront! Cats prefer Reiki on their own terms and like many animals if they sense that you are trying to coerce their participation in the treatment they will refuse to have anything to do with it. This is why we all love cats so much!
Each cat will have a different response during treatment. Some will curl up in their beds and fall into a deep sleep, even twitching as though dreaming. Other cats will climb on your lap and begin purring very loudly. Some will yawn and may start grooming themselves. The cat will usually let you know if he wants a hands-on treatment. Others may prefer to move around during treatment. If there is more than one cat then it is possible to do a group treatment and the cats will decide who goes first and they will take turns receiving their treatments.
If a cat has a specific health issue he may place the affected part of his body into your hands and stay in that position for the duration of the treatment. The cat will decide how long the treatment will last and will let you know when he has had enough.
The very first cat I treated at the Rescue Cattery was Kitty, she was an adorable 9 year old tabby and white female who shared a pen with her equally adorable brother Chucky. I loved both of these cats although not many of the staff could see the attraction where Chucky was concerned because he had drawn blood on many occasions (not mine I’m pleased to say!) I could see the potential in Chucky.
Kitty seemed to have a problem on her lower back where her tail started. She was always licking the area and the hair was very sparse and stubbly. She sat on my lap and I offered Reiki which was gratefully accepted. I held one hand over the area and immediately started to feel intense tingling and heat. I actually touched the area and the skin felt very hot. This was exciting stuff! After about 10 minutes the area cooled and the tingling stopped. I can only assume that Kitty had some sort of energy blockage there and the Reiki helped to release that blockage. After that treatment Kitty never excessively licked the area again and her fur grew back. Chucky also loved Reiki and turned into a real lap cat.
Another favourite of mine was Missy a beautiful but temperamental 1 year old tortoiseshell cat. She was a very heavily pregnant stray with no desire to be touched at all. I went in the pen and sat on the floor some distance away. I offered Reiki and Missy’s ears immediately pricked up, she looked at me strangely and then started to purr very loudly. Then to my amazement she came and sat on my lap, started to nuzzle my sleeve and paddy paw. I straightened up thinking ‘this cat is very close to my face’ but she just purred away and kneaded. I relaxed, slightly. Missy was due to ‘pop’ soon and her belly was huge. I think that the kittens were also receiving Reiki because they were really doing somersaults in there. I gave Missy and her kittens regular treatments and each time Missy came and sat on my lap. She started to permit gentle stroking but only for short periods of time. Missy’s kittens were homed and Missy went into the Main Cattery for re-homing. I used to have morning coffee with Missy in her pen and it was there that a lady spotted Missy sitting on my lap. She decided that Missy was the cat for her.
My own cat Hobbes is an ‘energy vampire’ and loves his Reiki. He will position himself between my hands and give a huge sigh. Hobbes has a touch of arthritis in his front legs and Reiki really helps. He is very insistent when he wants a treatment.
All animals can benefit from Reiki healing and for those who love animals and want to improve their well-being I can think of no better way than to learn Reiki.
At Gyrn Cottage Cattery in I am very pleased to offer free Reiki treatments to the cats that stay with me. I know that holiday times can be stressful for some cats and Reiki will be of great benefit to them and I will enjoy helping them to settle.