Shelter Animal Reiki Association

Shelter Animal Reiki Association

But That’s Not Reiki! Oh Yes, It Is!

But that’s not Reiki!  A colleague recently mentioned someone said this about the Let Animals Lead® method of Animal Reiki by Kathleen Prasad that we practice. I didn’t think much of it at the time, but the conversation has nagged me since.

Sure, we aren’t drawing symbols everywhere and placing our hands on an animal’s body as we do in Reiki with humans. However, it is still Reiki.  It is Reiki adapted to honor and respect animals as different species with unique sensibilities and preferences. Reiki is spiritual energy and we are sharing this energy with animals, just differently than with humans.

Reiki is a meditative practice. With the Let Animals Lead® method, we meditate with animals to create a space of compassion and love where healing can occur.  Our daily meditation practices allow us to easily create the “Reiki space” of oneness, compassion and love in our sessions with animals.  Animals can show us the way to this space, if we are willing to listen.

Even though we don’t place our hands on an animal unless the animal initiates it; our intention is that the animal receive whatever healing he or she needs.  We don’t need to know the animal’s issues or problems. Animals, unlike humans, do not always need touch.  We are essentially sharing Reiki with animals from a distance that is comfortable for them.  If the animal initiates contact, we place our hands where the animal guides us, instead of using a prescribed set of hand positions or placing our hands on an area of concern.

We use the symbols to deepen our connection to Reiki energy, thereby strengthening our ability to create a space of oneness and share Reiki with animals.  Animals do respond positively to chanting the symbols; often coming closer, visibly relaxing or falling asleep. We may intuitively draw or visualize the symbols in an animal treatment, but it more for us than the animals.  Animals are already connected to the energy and in a space of oneness, so they don’t need the symbols.

Animals lead us to where we need to be in our own healing journeys and in theirs.  If our hearts are open, we receive as much healing and love as the animals during a Reiki session. Animals show us how to be peaceful, mindful and live harmoniously from the heart.

We are practicing Reiki – Reiki adapted to honor animals as equal partners in the healing process.  The practices are different than those for humans because humans and animals differ on many levels.  We are simply meditating to create a space of oneness, compassion, love and peace where healing can occur. What could be more Reiki than that?

Laura Thomas
SARA Teacher



  1. July 23, 2019

    Wonderful article Laura! You explained so clearly how to honor and respect the animals choice by using the “Let Animals Lead” (R) method of Reiki…

  2. July 23, 2019

    Love this article Laura! I couldn’t agree more <3

  3. Marjorie Marsh
    July 23, 2019

    I read up on Reiki some time ago. I chose to work with animals. I read about the no touch method and gave it a try. Was I ever amazed. We adopted a Border Collie from the ASPCA several years ago. He could only walk on three of his legs. The cost to repair this was much more than I could afford. And ASPCA could help more animals with the money than doing surgery on one. He got along pretty good on three legs. So with my animals around me I started to practice this method. Shortly after this practice a cat who was getting ready to pass jumped down off the couch and I could hear her drinking water, the next morning the some food was eaten and the litter box used. It had been just about a week since she had done any of this. Two days later the collie was running on all 4. What a thrill to see.

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