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Reiki and Your Pet: An Overview


Animal Reiki

Alternative healing for animals is relatively new in a clinical sense, but the art of Reiki has been around for nearly a century. The therapy itself is also known as palm healing, or hands-on healing and focuses on the transference of energy (Reiki) through the palms, which allows for the body to self-heal as well as retain a balanced state of equilibrium.

What is Reiki?

Originally Reiki was a spiritual practice developed by Japanese Buddhist Mikao Usui in 1922. It has since been adapted and thus evolved from its original forms by practitioners who recognized the healing benefits and the soothing qualities of touch.

The two main branches of Reiki are often classified as “western Reiki” and traditional Japanese Reiki. These classifications can be vastly different but the primary difference is through the westernized versions use systemized movement of the hands as opposed to a primarily feel-based touch system relied on by the traditional Japanese practitioners.

The therapy itself relies on the power of touch in coordinated areas and sometimes with coordinated movements in order to relieve afflictions of a specific area or over the entire body. Although touching is the most common form of transferring energy through Reiki, there are instances where the therapy can be performed from afar, and without the need for actual physical touch. This form of therapy is commonly used on pets that aren’t necessarily used to being touched, such as fish or wild animals.

How does it help?

Reiki brings a peace and calm to animals that may struggle with certain ailments or fears. It is commonly used in hospice care to relax your pet or bring him comfort and peace during their final days. When your pet is nearing its final days, their energy and essence starts a shift out of the physical world and into the spiritual realm. Reiki helps bring a connection between owner and pet during these final times as well as easing the animal into their final days. The therapy brings a calm over your pet that eases them into the transition of their end of life and allows them to resist the struggles to stay a part of our lives.

Reiki in animals helps with a wide array of ailments. It’s commonly used to treat animals affected by stress or PTSD (post traumatic stress disorder – common in rescues), fear, anxiety, stress, hyperactivity, or suffering from mood disorders or problematic behavioral issues.

In some instances, it’s used to help animals recover from serious surgery, injuries, or genetic conditions although this is often considered a complimentary therapy and shouldn’t take the place of medication or veterinary care.

Benefits of Reiki As Opposed to Traditional Medicine

Most animal Reiki practitioners refer to Reiki as a non-invasive complimentary therapy. In most cases, it isn’t used to treat or cure major medical issues, but as a compliment to the prescription drugs that your vet provides.

That said, there are benefits to any pet that struggles with mental or emotional issues that are often very difficult to treat at your local vet’s office. These animals make prime candidates for Reiki therapy and are often the most dramatic transformations.

Since Reiki relies on the art of touch, it’s non-invasive, and non-harmful for your pet. This treatment is safe and effective for a wide variety of species, as well as animals young and old.

The Science of Reiki

The science behind Reiki is hard to quantify through study, but it’s quickly gaining support within the medical community for both pet and human use. Since Reiki relies on touch, it releases endorphins, which act as natural opiates and give our pets an overall sense of well being. These endorphins are commonly released both in the human when they pet an animal, and the animal itself, assuming they’re used to and enjoy being touched.

Endorphin release is also scientifically proven to:

  • Strengthen the immune system
  • Activate emotional triggers that are vital to mental well being
  • Increase the benefits of natural stress relieving hormones
  • Reduce instances of attitude-based behavior such as chronic hostility
  • Decrease the intensity and/or awareness of acute and chronic physical pain

Will Reiki Work for My Pet?

Most likely, yes. The only way to truly know is to give it a try with a professional and your pet. In general, Reiki can be used to treat numerous conditions both physical and mental. If you have tried other therapies to treat problem behavior or ailments with no success, it could never hurt to give Reiki a try. The procedure is painless, non-invasive, and affordable for nearly any pet.


Make sure to give us a call to learn more about animal Reiki and its benefits.

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