Reiki is a hands-on healing method that originated in Japan. The practitioner channels healing energy through her hands to a person or a pet through a light touch either directly on the body or from a distance. The word Reiki (pronounced “ray-key”) is a Japanese composite word usually translated as “universal life energy”. It is based on the idea that all living beings have life energy flowing through them. When life energy is high, you and your pets are healthy and balanced, more relaxed and less likely to get sick. When it is low, pets and humans alike will be more easily affected by stress and less resistant to illness.
Animals, especially cats, are naturally receptive to the Reiki energy and tend to gravitate toward it readily. Although it may be a little far-fetched, some people even say cats invented Reiki. Cats are sensitive to energy, and because of this, they are ideal recipients for any kind of energy therapy, including Reiki. A relaxed cat is the embodiment of balanced energy, harmony, and contentment. Cats also seem to have the ability to transmute negative energy into something peaceful and calming – another reason why they’re such a good match for energy healing.
As a Reiki Master Practitioner, I work with both animals and humans, and more than half of my current clients are feline. I work with cats both in person and via distance treatments. The concept of distance healing can be a bit of a leap for some people (although never for the cats!), but keep in mind that Reiki is energy, and energy works regardless of physical proximity. For more details on distance, or remote healing, read Distance Healing for You and Your Pet.
I work with cats for various issues. I treat feline clients with diseases ranging from asthma to kidney disease to diabetes to cancer. Reiki can be beneficial for behavior challenges such as integrating a new cat into the household. Reiki is particularly helpful for older cats with arthritis. Cats are masters at hiding pain, and their caretakers often don’t recognize the signs of arthritis until it is fairly advanced and causes the cat great discomfort. Reiki is a gentle modality that can greatly enhance comfort and help with pain control.
Many cats prefer Reiki at a slight distance, even during an in-person session. Due to their great sensitivity to energy, hands-on treatments can be too intense. Reiki still works. I’ve done Reiki for a cat that never came out from under the bed for her entire session, but she pulled the energy with amazing intensity, and her human noticed improvements after just one session.
My most dramatic experience with how cats utilize Reiki happened when a woman who fosters cats for a local rescue group asked me to come work on one of her cats for a specific problem. I was vaguely aware that there were quite a few cats in the house, and I saw some out of the corner of my eye in the next room, but once I began the session, I focused on the cat I was asked to work on, and had my back turned to the rest of the room. When I finished the session, and turned around, there were six or seven cats zonked out in various states of relaxation behind me. They had gotten an energy “hit” just from being in the same room during the session. One cat got up, walked up to me, and rubbed her face against my hand. The woman was amazed – this was a feral cat that she had barely been able to touch herself. That’s how powerful Reiki can be, and how receptive cats are to it – even though I directed the energy at one specific cat, the other cats still knew what to do with the residual energy.
Photo is of Amber receiving Reiki.
You may also enjoy listening to a recent teleseminar Simple Energy Techniques for Happy, Healthy Cats.
Reiki and other energy therapies are not a substitute for veterinary care.