A Reiki Share with the Horses

Reiki Share at Ivelolharele Retirement SantuarySharing will enrich everyone with more knowledge.  ~Ana Monnar

This quote highlights the purpose of a Reiki Share.  It is a time to get together with like-minded people to share our experiences, to learn from each other and to practice and share Reiki with each other and with the animals.  We support each other and grow together in Reiki.

I host a regular Reiki Share for my Animal Reiki students.  We get together every six weeks or so; sometimes we offer Reiki to each other, and other times we take a field trip to offer Reiki to the animals.  On June 9, 2013, we met at Ivelolharele Retirement Sanctuary in Chilton, Wisconsin, to share an afternoon of Reiki with the horses and donkeys.  Everyone had many wonderful Reiki experiences; and I have two that I would like to share.

Smokey and Buddy

Offering Reiki to BuddyTwo of my newer students asked for some guidance as we began the afternoon.  So, we went together to offer Reiki to Smokey and Buddy who were sharing a small pasture near the house.  These two sweet horses along with some other sweet spirits taught my students about just “Being Reiki” and letting go of what might happen.  We sat outside the fence overlooking the countryside.  After I guided us in creating a Reiki space and inviting Smokey and Buddy to join us, we sat in the beautiful healing energy.  Smokey and Buddy moved around a bit as they grazed, but stayed a few feet away sharing the energy with us.

I think my students were hoping the horses would move closer and stand more directly in front of us, but Smokey and Buddy wanted us to have a different experience.  As we sat there in this quiet space, some birds in the evergreen tree next to us moved closer and began chirping very loudly; they were making sure that we knew they had joined us in the energy.  Some insects also joined us, flying in and crawling on our notepads.

Ann and SadieAnd at one point, I happened to look over to my right where Sadie, a very sweet donkey, had been grazing nearby; she was looking at us very intently and quietly connecting with us.  After we finished, the owner of the sanctuary, Jody, shared that as she was taking pictures, she noticed that the cats in the house had all congregated at the window just behind us; they too were connecting with us.  Wow, what a great learning experience for all of us.  If we create a Reiki space and invite all of the animals to connect with us, we are able to assist not only those that we intend to work with, but also any others who may choose to join us.


Ann and CzielloFor our second practice session, I was inspired to spend time with the horses in the barn.  Yoda and Mikey were in their stalls next to each other, and Cziello was across the aisle.  I had worked with Yoda in the past, so I stood in the middle of the aisle facing Yoda and invited all three horses to join me in the Reiki space.  Yoda knew why I was there and stayed at the front of his stall often reaching his head out toward me; he was very sweet and open to the energy.  Just as I was about to move closer to Yoda, he moved back in his stall, and I immediately felt something warm over my left shoulder.  I looked back, and there was Cziello extending his head as far as he could toward me, almost brushing his muzzle against me.  I turned around to face Cziello and moved right in front of him placing my hands under his muzzle. He continued looking directly at me; he would push his muzzle into my hands; he would lift his head and smile; and he would cock his head to one side.  I just stood there mirroring his movements and sharing the moment with him.  Thank you to Cziello for this wonderful experience and for sharing such a beautiful and peaceful connection with me.

I am grateful for all of the wonderful people I have met who share my passion for supporting the well-being of animals through Reiki.  I look forward to our Reiki Shares when we have the opportunity to get together, to experience Reiki and to share and learn and grow together.  And I thank the animals for connecting with us, teaching us and guiding us on our Reiki journeys.

Thank you everyone who joined us at Ivelolharele Retirement Sanctuary – it was an amazing afternoon sharing Reiki with the horses!

Ann Noyce

A Plea to Help Our Wild Horses

I am writing this on what, according to the ASPCA, is National Horse Protection Day. Which is somewhat ironic, because I woke up this morning to read yet another story about more of wild horses being rounded up and removed from their homes. The pictures were heartbreaking. The eyewitness accounts even more so.

Wild Mustang RoundupIt seems like almost every day I am getting these emails from people I know who are working tirelessly to stop the massive removal of these magnificent animals from their homelands. Wild horses have roamed our countryside for hundreds of year. Yet now, under the direction of the government, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) is staging nationwide roundups of wild horses so they can turn over the land to cattle ranchers. While I have never witnessed a roundup live, friends of mine have. I have seen harrowing pictures and video and heard tragic stories. Once they are captured, the lucky horses are saved by rescue groups and sent to sanctuaries. They will never again roam free, but they are safe. The unlucky ones are sent to feedlots where they are held in small pens indefinitely or possibly shipped to slaughter.

In my opinion, this is unacceptable and must be stopped. And as Reiki practitioners, I believe we can do something about it.

After I read the most recent roundup story this morning, I sat down to do my morning Reiki session and decided to send Reiki to the horses who had been captured and their family members who were left behind. As I started to connect to them, I felt their pain. I felt their terror and fear. It broke my heart. I started to cry and tears continued to run down my face as I continued to send them love and what comfort I could. I could not tell them “You are loved, you are safe…” because I don’t know if they are safe. I could only tell them that I sent them love, I saw them, I recognized them, I wanted to help them, and I appreciated them for the magnificent beings that they are. As I did this, I felt their energy shift. I felt the love being returned to me. After all they had been through, THEY were sending love and comfort to me. It was wonderful and beautiful and heartbreaking all at the same time.

And it made me more determined than ever to do all I can to help them.

I have been thinking for some time about starting healing circles, where Reiki practitioners and other energy workers can get together to work as a group on particular animal issues – one issue at a time. I’m putting this in motion now, and I intend to start with the wild horses.

I know many SARA members volunteer at horse sanctuaries. I know whenever I do Reiki with any horse, it is a healing experience for me. They heal me as well as teach me. They help open and heal my heart. They are incredibly loving, healing and giving. And they need our help.

Kathleen and Leah always tell us that when you work on one animal, you can have an impact on all animals and how they are treated. Imagine the impact we could have if we all focused a little bit of our time and energy to help the horses.

I think it would be wonderful if SARA members could include the wild horses in our Reiki sessions. I am going to do this as often as I can. We can include those horses who have been captured, those who were left behind, and those who remain at risk of being captured. We can send Reiki to the entire situation and hold the vision of a day when our horses are left alone and allowed to run free, as they should be.

(A friend of mine, another SARA member, is working on getting a list of dates of future scheduled roundups. We could send Reiki at that particular time and place also. If anyone is interested in that information, or any other information about what is happening with the wild horses, please feel free to contact me directly at info@heartsandpawsanimalhealing.com.)

I hope we can all consider joining forces and sending some of our Reiki love and energy to the wild horses. I know it will help. I know we can make a difference. And I know, regardless of what happens, the horses will feel it and it will help them. And, as never fails when working with animals, we ourselves will get healing in the process.

Cathy O’Brien

A Gift from Pete: Experiencing the Circle of Healing

In 2012, I twice had the honor of sharing Reiki with a sweet 10 year old Shetland pony named Pete. Through a beautiful two-way connection each time, Pete gave me a gift; he taught me the power of the “circle of healing” through Reiki.

PetePete lives at a barn near Green Bay, WI, with a wonderful family, about 10 horses and a couple of mini horses, a place where he receives a lot of love and attention. Pete’s life has not always been so idyllic. Pete came to live with Diane from a place where he was most likely abused and not well-cared for. It seems that Pete received little attention; he was kept in his stall most of the time; and his stall was rarely cleaned. These people really did not want Pete, and luckily for him, Diane was willing to give him a loving home. As a result of his past, Pete had lost trust in humans and responded very cautiously and fearfully when people came near him or tried to ride or interact with him.

I offered Reiki to Pete in the pasture he shares with the two mini horses. At first, Pete was very shy and guarded around me. As I created the Reiki space and invited him to join me, he moved away from me towards the edge of the bubble, his tail swishing. But, Pete stayed; as we shared this beautiful space of Reiki energy, I could feel Pete become more and more relaxed and mellow. At one point he did move away for a minute, but he soon came back and stood next to me. His head dropped, he began chewing and his eyes closed. Then, he gently leaned his body against mine. Pete was totally relaxed and part of the energy; he was no longer concerned about what was happening around him. There was just a beautiful energetic connection between us, which we shared for a few minutes.

As I was talking with Diane after the treatment, Pete came over to stand by me and to nuzzle his face against me. Diane commented, “He really likes you!” A couple days later, Diane reported that she was playing with Pete in the arena with all of the horse toys. For the first time, Pete was not scared and thoroughly enjoyed himself. I was honored to have this opportunity to connect with Pete and assist him on his journey to overcome the fears of his past.

But the story does not end here……

About six months later, Alan and I were asked by a friend to come to the same barn to offer her horse a Raindrop treatment. On that particular day, I was not in a good state of mind; I was stressed and overwhelmed; I was definitely not following the five precepts. I even forgot to bring my barn boots and didn’t have shoes appropriate for the barn. I told myself that I should have stayed home. Our friend suggested that she would bring her horse outside for the treatment since it was a nice day; I asked Alan to apply the Raindrop treatment since I was not prepared. We happened to be right next to the pasture that Pete shares with the mini horses.

When Pete saw me, he quickly came over to the fence, looking very intently at me. I didn’t go over to him right away, but he stayed there grazing. After a few minutes, I realized that Pete was calling me to come over to him, so I approached the fence to say “hi”. As I stood there with him rubbing his nose and muzzle, I felt this warm energy surrounding me; I felt my demeanor shift; I felt the stress melt away; I felt calmer; and I felt this strong connection with Pete. We stood there sharing the Reiki space for about 10-15 minutes. It was so peaceful!

Pete gave me a beautiful gift that sunny fall day, a gift that definitely was not expected. Pete created a Reiki connection with me, he offered me that space of balance and harmony that I so needed. He helped me to feel better and happy that I did not stay at home (and happy that I forgot my boots!).

Reiki really is a gift, a two-way gift. When we truly connect with animals and open our hearts, we have the opportunity to experience the “circle of healing”, either in the same treatment or over multiple treatments. We not only help the animals through Reiki, but they in turn help us. I want to thank Pete for trusting me, for connecting with me and for giving me this beautiful gift.

Ann Noyce, Animal Reiki Teacher

Text Book Animal Reiki

Apollo receiving Reiki

Apollo receiving Reiki

Last week I taught Animal Reiki Level 1 and used the techniques and meditations I had learnt from Kathleen’s Reiki Workshops here in the UK. I cannot emphasize highly enough how Kathleen’s teaching helped me grow as both a teacher and in my reiki practice. The biggest thing and most profound thing I learnt, from Kathleen was ‘patience’ this may sound easy but actually, it is hard and takes much practice and discipline. Why do I say profound?  Kathleen made me think about all  of the animals, that  I had missed over the years by not giving them the extra reiki time to come forward into the reiki space. When I thought nothing was happening, it was exactly when everything is happening. By letting go of my ‘ego’ and not judging the animals that I knew better and just ‘being in the reik space’ allowed for amazing things to happen.

Teaching my students last Saturday, we walked out into the big open field at Remus. The field had around 15 horses, grazing quietly. My students found an area  in the middle of the field and meditated in their own reiki space. What happened next was truly amazing. Apollo, who is the head of the herd, the matriarch, approached each of us for reiki and stood for about 20 minutes. She then walked off into the field, Dolly, her pair bond then came up to me for reiki and placed her head in my hands. Two by two, Stanley and Casper, Sally and Casey, Thomas and Daisy, formed a que and waited patiently to receive reiki and to wait their turn. They formed their que in order of their herd status, they were tolerant of each other, the energy was serene and beautiful. This in it’self was truly magical but what happened next was amazing, Trojan who is a white pony and has always stayed away during reiki sessions came over to one of my students and stood in front of her to take his reiki. By meditating in our own reiki space we allowed Trojan the confidence to come forward. Being patient and having a basic understanding of horse behaviour and how a herd works makes for a truly miraculous reiki afternoon.

Being able to share Kathleen’s teaching’s with my students and being able to improve my own reiki practice showed me that you have to be able to teach from your own experiences and not to teach from what you think the experience will be like.


Kathleen hit’s the UK in good old Reiki style.

Reiki has taken centre stage at Remus this month, as Kathleen teaches her first ever UK Animal Reiki Class. She has taught over 30 students, over 5 days, with people travelling from literally all over the world; Portugal, USA and a vet from Japan. Kathleen has transformed people’s lives and left us all with a true feeling of optimism and hope.Leah, Vicky, Me, Kathleen, Sue

Kathleen’s visit to Remus had firstly been a dream, a thought, a vision and then finally it became a reality. I had spent the last two years, talking to Sue and my students about how brilliant Kathleen was.  At each of my Reiki SARA group meetings at Remus, I would day dream about actually meeting her and drift off into my dreamy world. Now that the day had truly arrived, I could hardly contain my excitement and was so nervous. Meeting Kathleen, I was also blessed to meet Leah too and yes! they looked exactly like their photo and how I expected them to be. ‘Just lovely’. We shared some precious girlie moments and had a good giggle. Below, I have  shared some of my highlights from Kathleen’s visit although there were,  many, many more.

Arriving at Remus, they too could see what I have always seen. This beautiful Animal Sanctuary, at that very moment I was so proud of Remus and felt a deep wave of emotion pass over me. Sue showed us around Remus, where we were able to meet all of the animals. The sun was shining and the animals opened up their hearts to Kathleen. It was almost as if they too had been waiting for her to come, so they could help her to teach.

Kathleen taught Level 1 Animal Reiki on the first day, she took the lesson in the big Remus field. I have worked with the horses there often offering Reiki to them and I watched intently as Kathleen taught her students. One of the Remus horses Sally made straight for one of the students and started to push her around in circles. This is something she has never done before and it was not aggressive, it was just a definite push. Kathleen, spoke to the student and said “It is OK to have boundaries and to say no” with that Sally trotted off, as her message had been understood and the effect on the student was life changing as this was an issue she had been dealing with all her life.

The next day on the Equine class, again we were standing in the field and there were 18 students standing in a line. It was so funny to watch, as Stanley, one of the horses came to stand with the students to listen to what Kathleen was going to say. Then Thomas another horse walked up to Kathleen, placed himself next to her and allowed her to show us Reiki Hand positions, if an animal so chooses. I have to say, watching Kathleen with the animals, was so special. She lived up to everything I thought she would be and much more. She was able to put up with my ‘ditsyness’ as on one day I actually managed to lose all of the Shinpiden students, yes! that is true.

Kathleen finished with her 3 day Animal Reiki Teacher workshop and it was here that Apollo the head of the herd came to teach the students. As they meditated in the middle of the field, she came over to be part of the Reiki energy and to show that she was definitely the Matriarch . She taught many of the students about what Animal Reiki truly is,  it is not about placing hands on the animals but it is about the animal having the choice. For me this class was by far, the most life changing for me, as a student and a SARA teacher. I have still, so much to practice on a daily basis and cannot wait for her return next year. The Remus animals will be ready and waiting to help Kathleen to teach, they so enjoyed teaching us so many lessons, if we would just listen.

For anyone wishing to do Animal Shinpiden Level 3 Reiki, my advice would be to start saving now, as Kathleen is light years ahead of truly understanding how to offer Reiki to animals. I myself, have been so inspired to take my SARA group to the next level and have lots  of wonderful ideas for for supporting SARA/Kathleen’s students here in the UK.



BrightHaven: Home for Special Animals, Invaluable Resource for the Rest of Us

Brighthaven HorsesI recently had the pleasure of spending a weekend doing Reiki with rescued horses at BrightHaven Animal Rescue.  Located in the Northern California town of Santa Rosa, BrightHaven is an amazing place, and I find myself wanting to tell everyone about it.  First and foremost, it is a home for senior, disabled and terminally ill animals.  All the animals there are at least 16 years old; the horses are all over the age of 26.  Founded by Gail and Richard Pope in 1990, BrightHaven is their home also.  Indoors you will see many senior cats and dogs – some partially paralyzed.  Some of the dogs can be seen tearing around the back yard on their “wheels,” almost as fast as any dog you’ve ever seen.

There are over 25 horses at BrightHaven.  Some are direct BrightHaven rescues.  Others were rescued by Sadie’s Haven, a nonprofit horse rescue and sanctuary.  All would have ended up sold for slaughter if it weren’t for Sadie’s Haven and BrightHaven.  Instead, they will live out their natural lives in this wonderful haven, surrounded with peace and love.

Brighthaven GoatA goat also makes her home at BrightHaven, as well as some ducks, geese, and I just don’t even know who else.  It is truly a safe haven for all.

All animals at BrightHaven are provided with a natural diet and holistic health care…including Reiki!  As a result, animals tend to have unusually long life spans – up to 30 years for cats and 23 years for dogs.

In addition to a home for the animals, BrightHaven is also a healing arts center and is an amazing resource for those of us interested in holistic and natural animal care.  They offer seminars, consulting services and educational events on the subject of holistic and natural care for animals.  Their website includes an extensive library of articles on an amazing variety of subjects around holistic healthcare, alternative healing therapies, and hospice care for animals.  They even have holistic healthcare products for sale.

Brighthaven CatAs someone who has been struggling with health issues of my aging cats for the last several years, I am amazed and humbled by the efforts of Gail and Richard.  I know first hand how difficult it is when your animals get older and have special needs.  I’m sure many of you do, too.  How they care for so many “special needs” animals through the end of life transition is beyond my capacity to imagine. And the care and love that the animals at BrightHaven receive is beyond description.

I encourage you all to visit the BrightHaven website for more information on their sanctuary, their educational programs, and the vast array of information available there.  (Website information given below.)  If you are interested in visiting, they are having an Open House on Sunday, September 23 from 1-4 p.m.  I also encourage you, if you are so inclined, to make a donation to BrightHaven and/or Sadie’s Haven.  They are doing amazing work that is only possible through the generosity of people like you and me.

By the way, if you are interested in learning Reiki for Animals, my teacher, Kathleen Prasad, teaches classes at BrightHaven.  I guarantee you this will be an experience you will not forget.

For more information:

BrightHaven:   www.brighthaven.org
Sadie’s Haven:   www.sadieshaven.com

Cathy O’Brien
SARA Reiki Practitioner

Offering Reiki to Jimmy



Dresssed in  my pyjamas and ready for a lazy day, I received a text from Sue, to say that Jimmy was going to be put to sleep and that she was waiting for the vet to come. I immediately threw on some clothes and raced over to Remus Horse Sanctuary. As I entered the Sanctuary, hair un-brushed and very bedraggled, I tried to compose and ground myself.

Lying in the stable was Jimmy; a small Shetland pony who I had offered reiki to many times before and had followed his chequered love life. He was a small pony with a big heart and fell in love very quickly and un-conditionally. Unfortunately, many of his loves were not so impressed with him, yet he had such tenacity and would never give up in trying to find his true love. He was tiny, yet loved the big horses. Even though to see, rejection could be hard, as the girls often made it very clear to him, they just were not interested. He was 40 years of age and in the last few months his liver had started to break down. This was managed daily on palliative care, so he had a full life with his friends and loves. Only the week before, I had been offering reiki to him and he had seemed very down.  There are over 70 horses at Remus and I work with the horses on the’ red’ list, those, who need the most intensive care. It can be hard at times, as I have to say so many goodbyes, after relationships have been built on respect and trust over long periods of time. I decided to lay on the wood shavings next to him, speaking very gently and lovingly. Horses are prey animals, wired with the ‘flight and fight’ response. A horse lying down would be very vulnerable in the wild to carnivores, so a natural response would be to get up and to run. If we understand animals at an evolutionary level, it makes it easier for us to understand how they ‘tick’. His eyes reflected this panic but he was unable to stand, so as I lay there and closed my eyes and offered reiki to him. I did not stand over him, we both just lay flat in the stable in a very quiet reiki space. I still felt a resistance to the reiki, so spoke gently to him about how handsome he was and how he would be able to meet friends who had passed and played him some classical music to help him relax. The vet was running late due to so many cases of colic, Sue and Vicky came into the stable and wrapped him in a pale green blanket. Vicky showed me how to support his head, as it would offer him more comfort. This was the turning point, as I knelt into him and let his head rest on my stomach, we stayed like this for about half an hour. I felt a deep breath of acceptance. Wrapped in the green blanket, he took in lots of reiki and I know prepared to cross over to the rainbow bridge. I kept myself grounded and did not show my sadness, as I did not want him to sense any sorrow. The vet arrived and more Remus staff, who had cared for him for most of his life, entered the stable. There was a real feeling of serenity and love. When Jimmy passed with dignity to the other side, I felt his soul leave his body and was shaken to the core by a massive wave of emotion.

I cried my many tears and have since reflected on that day. For me, reiki, is most powerful when offered to an animal who is being put to sleep. It offers a space of dignity and peacefulness and most of all LOVE. I feel it is important; to put aside your grief until the animal has passed, as they are so sensitive to our energy, especially our sadness.

If you want to be the best reiki animal practitioner you can be then come along to Remus Horse Sanctuary. They are a ‘Shelter Animal Reiki Association’ Sanctuary and will be hosting Kathleen Prasad’s first visit to the UK this September 19th -23rd. For more information, please contact http://www.animalreikisource.com/reiki-classes/international-courses

Offering Reiki to the oldest horse in the world!


Shayne is a horse at Remus Horse Sanctuary and he happens to be the oldest horse  in the world. He is 52 years of age and still looks amazing for his many years here on this earth. Shayne became a bit of a celebrity a few months ago, as all of the tabloid papers in the UK wanted to write about him, they descended on Remus in droves and happily photographed him as he trotted proudly around the field. This did put Remus on the map and was a huge sensation but unfortunately it did not mean more donations for the Sanctuary, instead more people phoning up to re-home their elderly horses.

Remus through diet, dental care, blacksmiths, veterinary and holistic care are able to care for many of their horses expertly, who are in their 30′s, 40′s and of course Shayne who is in his 50′s. They strive to give their animals the best possible environment to thrive in. Age is just a number and not a death sentence, each animal is looked after on their own merits and not tossed aside because they have become too expensive to keep.

I would like to say that Shayne was on my weekly reiki healing list and that I had been working with him for the last 4 years, unfortunately for me this was not the case as he has had such good health. For all of the time I have been at Remus he has not needed any Reiki. The first time, I offered reiki to Shayne he was in his stable, he was very dismissive and made it clear that he was not going to be part of this connection.  At 52 this was his first experience of reiki and I can only suspect that he needed to check it out, have a think about it and to process it. The next time I offered him Reik, he was in a small field on his own.  As I entered the field I could see that he was was very suspicious of me,  seeing his uncertainty I stood at the edge and offered the Reiki into the field. I stood quietly and watched him move slowly towards me, he was still unsure but with more confidence he entered into the reiki space. I kept my head low and did not make eye contact with him as he found this threatening. He edged his way up to me and slowly moved his head into my hands. Gently and with much stillness I held his head as he drifted into the reiki zone. After a while he realised his vulnerability and quickly moved away to the end of the field. With each reiki session I have had with him he has become more trusting of me. He now watches me with much interest and picks up on the reiki connection straight away.

Shayne has seen many things during his long life and as far as we are aware has always had good owners. He is a lovely old boy, who still has his good looks. Reiki I feel has given him the space and time to totally relax and and let go. He definitely seems more chilled and I am sure he looks forward to our weekly reiki sessions. I always respect his wishes and give him his space, we acknowledge each other from a distance which I know he wants. I say “hi” and “bye” and in between this, is a shared love of reiki.


Being Reiki

From my first visit to Horse Rescue Australia I really got to understand what it means to just ‘be’ Reiki rather than ‘do’ or ‘send’ Reiki, thanks to some expert guidance from my four legged teachers.

A lot of the horses at HRA have been rescued from years of abandonment, others from abusive situations, while others are young and perfectly healthy but there because of unfortunate circumstances and waiting on a new forever home.

But no matter what their reason is for being there, all the horses provide instant feedback when it comes to Reiki and each has their own way of letting me know what they want – or don’t want, as well as where, when, how and if, and for how long! With so many variables it’s been a very effective way of learning to ‘just be’ and ‘to allow’ and ‘not to expect’.

Its been several weeks since my first visit and I have come to know that each visit will be completely different from the last with no guarantee that whoever was open to receiving Reiki last week will want it this week. Except Sandy…

SandySandy is a pretty little buckskin mare approximately 24 years old who came to Horse Rescue in 2000 when she was rescued with some of her friends from a herd of 22 ponies running wild in a 10-acre paddock. At the time Sandy had a very young foal at foot and another still suckling from her. She had probably spent her life before HRA having babies. Sandy was so scared of people HRA carers couldn’t go near her without her trembling like a mouse. She is very smart, and very good at not being caught!

Sandy is still very scared of people, so much so that her first encounter with Reiki was experienced from behind the safety of the herd while I sat on a tree stump at a respectable distance, during which time the rest of the herd relaxed and went through the usual range of peaceful activities horses go through when they’re enjoying Reiki. Every now and then I’d open my eyes and take a peek at the resting horses, a yawn here, a stretch there, the occasional position change somewhere else – and there would be Honey and Sandy; on full alert positioned safely behind the others, their necks stretched tall like a pair of giraffes and keeping a close eye on me, just waiting for me to move an eyelid, which of course would have been their cue to high tail it to the other end of the property!

But I didn’t, and they didn’t, and when the rest of the herd gently broke off and started to graze some 40 minutes later, Honey and Sandy simply moved off with the herd without the calamity I’m sure they expected.

Over the weeks I’ve been visiting the horses I‘m getting to know all their little quirks and personality traits, and how they like or don’t like to receive Reiki, how sometimes they’ll stand for 30 minutes, other times not at all, sometimes they like hands on and sometimes they prefer Reiki from a distance. But the one who has been the biggest surprise has been Sandy. Of all the horses, she will always accept some Reiki during my visits, preferring to receive her treatments from a distance when we are out in the main paddock.

There is a large flat rock under a shady gumtree, which is perfect for me to sit on while I offer Reiki so that has become my regular spot in the main paddock. Usually when I begin, the Shetlands immediately make their way over for some hands on treatments, or to rest their noses on me while I offer Reiki, sometimes they lay down close by and move off when they are done. Mostly the horses will take turns to receive the energy, some from a distance, some hands on, and other times I’ll have a flock of pigeons resting in the grass all around me, but no matter who else may or may not come for treatments, Sandy never misses. She has her favourite spot where she stands a little way off in her own space to enjoy anywhere from 30 – 60 minutes of energy at a time and when she is finished, she will give me a little look of thanks and break off to graze.

Last week I went into the main paddock and found the herd a little distance away from my rock, but before I could make my way over the Shetlands had spotted me and mobbed me for some hands on treatments, which appeared to annoy Sandy. I could tell she was really keen for some energy but the close proximity of the other horses really seemed to have her rattled that day. However, after the ponies had received their treatments and moseyed off and the others had also received varying amounts of Reiki, I caught Sandy’s attention and moved away from the herd so she could follow me if she chose. She did so I sat cross-legged in the grass about 10 feet away from her with my eyes closed, hands resting on my knees with palms upturned, and began to offer some Reiki. I knew that she really wanted to connect, and that if I gave her a chance she just might.

After several minutes I opened my eyes just a tiny bit and could see her creeping over to me as quiet as a church mouse. A few minutes later I opened my eyes again just a tiny bit and could see that she’d crept a little bit closer, her neck was stretched as far as she could possibly stretch it in my direction, and her eyes were as wide as saucers. I could see she was terrified so I closed my eyes again and just allowed the Reiki to flow. Then ever so lightly I felt her soft warm muzzle gently touch my right palm, then a few moments later the same warm sensation on my left palm as she investigated my other hand. It was an emotional moment. I remained still and allowed her to retreat at her own pace, as I knew she would. After a few moments I peeked again to see her standing several feet away, just enjoying the energy. We stayed like this for perhaps 30 minutes without the interference from the rest of the herd, and when she was finished, Sandy gave me that little look of gratitude, and moved off to graze and I left the herd in peace.

Julie Abrahams

Who Helped Whom?

Imagine standing next to a horse, and immediately being led to place your body into a Mountain Pose. Meeting Joe Black for the first time, this is what I did with my right hand placed on my heart and my left hand placed above his shoulder. During this Mountain Pose, the word “Yogi” came to mind.

Joe Black is a beautiful nine year old black Percheron who was rescued by Changing Leads Equine Rescue, just days before I came to offer him Animal Reiki. His presence commands respect, even though he’s 600 pounds underweight.

After I had introduced myself, I sat a short distance from him because he was still eating his alfalfa cubes; I wanted to give him space. After thirty minutes of offering Animal Reiki, my heart did a little leap when this gentle giant walked over to sniff my hands. Afterwards he slowly pivoted and walked a couple of slow laps around his hard turnout.

Soon I heard telepathically “Do yoga” from him. Aside from being surprised, I thought to myself that would be really weird to be doing yoga in a horse’s turnout, as well as there were several people around the place that could possibly be watching. I telepathically told him, “uh…no….not going there.” He replied gently, “Ok. That’s fine.”

I caught myself thinking curiously ….what does this being know about yoga? Forgetting about my surroundings, I jumped up asking telepathically “Ok, I’m game! What pose?”. He flashed me pictures of one doing the Sun Salutation. I telepathically said, “uh…we’re on gravel…can we compromise?” He then flashed the beginning sequence of a Sun Salutation: Mountain Pose, Upward Salute, Standing Forward Bend, Standing Half Forward Bend, and back to Mountain Pose. I happily replied “I can do that!”

As I was doing the poses, he came and stood near me, breathing in the Reiki. I literally felt his breath on me throughout the first round.

Upward Salute

(During this Upward Salute, Joe was licking his lips which is a sign of him accepting Reiki.)

After the first round, he wanted Reiki focused on his heart space with my left hand for several minutes. Again, I followed his request.

Joe Black

When he had enough, he slowly walked off into a corner and went into a “Reiki nap”. His body completely relaxed by lowering his head, closing his eyes, licking his lips, and snoring from time to time.

Yoga Pose

Standing Forward Bend

Anytime that I took a rest, he would wake up, turn his head to me while licking his lips all the while saying “Continue.”

(Look at all of the amazing orbs!)

After about thirty minutes from doing these poses, I heard him say “Now twist”. Again, he flashed me a picture of what the pose was and I obliged.

He continued to lick his lips as he stood with his eyes closed. After two minutes of twisting, he said “Warrior”. When I stepped into the Warrior pose, he opened his eyes and turned his head to look at me. As we stood looking into each other’s eyes for several minutes, time stood still as we experienced a transcendent release from our lives. He thanked me and told me he was finished. After I had thanked him and Reiki, I wondered to myself….who helped whom?

On further note, I discussed with my yoga teacher later that evening to find the deeper meanings behind the poses. Mountain Pose is bringing awareness of one’s aliveness. The beginning of a Sun Salutation which leads to the Upward Salute is opening oneself to the divine energy to flow within. Standing Forward Bend is bowing down to Mother Earth’s energy, and then Standing Half Forward Bend is to open one’s heart space to receive this energy. The twisting pose further opens up the heart space (heart chakra). Warrior represents strength, which leads back to my question….who helped whom?

Camille Pukay
Animal Reiki Divine, LLC
SARA Teacher