Shelter Animal Reiki Association

Shelter Animal Reiki Association

Reiki with Butterscotch the Parakeet

One beautiful spring day, I was contemplating how much I’d like to be bringing Reiki more into my daily life (besides my own self-practice). I was having a hard time concentrating on my work and had Spring Fever.

I went out for some fresh air at lunch and on my return home, I bumped into a neighbor whom I hardly ever saw let alone spoke to. This time though, she invited me in to meet her new Parakeet. She’d never had a bird before and was so excited to talk and share stories about him. The bird was lovely – all Easter egg pastel coloring – but Marge was concerned because every time she put her hand into the cage and tried to lure him out, he’d nip at and bite her fingers.

I told her about Reiki and my involvement with animal Reiki and SARA, and offered to give Butterscotch (so named by her grandchildren) a Reiki treatment. Marge was very open to trying this so we made an appointment for that night. I went back to work a very happy camper and was able to concentrate on my work, knowing that I had an interesting evening ahead, especially since I’d never offered Reiki to a bird!

When I first arrived at Marge’s, Butterscotch was very active in his cage, hopping from branch to branch, ringing his bell, and pecking at the mirror he loved to look into. Marge’s home was already very peaceful and with the Reiki music in the background, I was able to enter into that deep Reiki meditative state where I connected to Butterscotch and held the energetic space open for healing to occur.

I sat on the couch across from Butterscotch’s cage, and he quieted down almost immediately. I observed his chest moving up and down slowly and rhythmically, indicating he had gone into a relaxed state. The treatment lasted about an hour and when I turned around to talk to Marge, she was napping in her chair… seems she had benefited from the energy as well!

The next day, I checked in with Marge and she was thrilled (and surprised) that Butterscotch had come out of his cage without nipping at her fingers! He had spent about an hour just hopping up and down the length of her floor to ceiling mirror, admiring his reflection. I was leaving town the next day, but offered to follow up with another Reiki treatment when I returned. Unfortunately, Marge and I kept missing each other over the next couple weeks, and when I finally saw her, she told me that he had been nipping at her fingers again. Butterscotch had gone to live with her grandchildren, where he would have another parakeet to interact with.

I was surprised how attached I felt to that bird in just the one hour I spent with him. (I consider myself a ‘cat person’ after all!) I was sad to know I wouldn’t get to visit him again, but knowing he was going to a good home helped. One of the lessons of Reiki is to let go and let whatever needs to happen happen. This was a good reminder for me to not become attached to the outcome for any animals, whether they’re domestic animals in caring homes or in a shelter situation, awaiting their forever home.

Corrine Kuhl

Kathleen Prasad

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