Calm and Clear: Exploring Animal Reiki

by Michele Leach

When you first meet Kaye Smith, her energy instantly calms you and your pet. She greeted Lilo and me, her owner, with a warm and loving welcome as we entered the Animal Wellness room at The Reiki Center for Healing Arts.   

Lilo, a six-year old Great Dane/Pit Bull mix, was adopted by the Leach family about 5 years ago. She came from the Capital Area Humane Society where she had lived for a couple of months after her original owners decided to give her away due to issues with their cats. Lilo was adopted into a loving family, one that already had two dogs in the home, Buddy and Gracie. While Lilo seemed happy to be a part of a new and happy home, she had some self-esteem issues from the beginning. She had severe separation anxiety and would often cry when her owner left the house.

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During her first Animal Reiki session, Lilo instantly formed a trusting bond with Kaye and calmed down as she began to talk to her. Kaye applied light, calming touch as Lilo and her owner began to express their feelings about how she fits in with other dogs, her relationship with Gracie, in particular, and not having the confidence to “speak” about what has happened in her life.

Kaye began to work on Lilo’s sacral and solar plexus chakras, which are the energy centers in the body for emotions and confidence. As Kaye spent more time touching Lilo’s body, she began to relax further, falling into a meditative state.

At the end of the session, Lilo was very calm and relaxed and was very affectionate with Kaye. Overall the experience for Lilo was a positive one, and she will be returning for more Animal Reiki sessions with Kaye in the future.

What is Animal Reiki?

It’s essentially meditating with your animals. But in a broader sense, Reiki is a spiritual system cultivating compassionate intention, which in turn may bring about healing transformation. The practice of Reiki helps us navigate life’s challenges with grace and surrender while we to learn to listen to and be present for others in a compassionate space. Offering one’s self as a conduit through which energy can flow for the good of another is the single most powerful gift that one can give and receive.

During a Reiki session, animals often experience a deep state of peace as the Reiki clears imbalances, allowing for new and harmonious patterns of health and wellness to emerge. Physical contact is not a requirement for Reiki and traditionally the practitioner offers Reiki to the animal hands off. This way, the animal controls the treatment, either accepting Reiki from a distance or settling themselves against the practitioner’s hands. Many people have unique experiences in connecting with and learning from the animals themselves. 

For more information about Animal Reiki, please contact The Reiki Center for Healing Arts at or call 614-486-8323.