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Animal Reiki

There are two ways of spreading the light; to be the candle or the mirror that reflects it —Edith Wharton

The name Reiki (pronounced “ray-key”) comes from the Japanese words “rei” meaning spirit and “ki” meaning energy. It is written with 2 Japanese kanji  or characters. These kanji mean “spiritual energy.”

  • reiki-symbol-1Rei—(lit. Japanese) spiritual or sacred.
  • reiki-symbol-2Ki—(lit. Japanese) energy, the energy of everything, which is usually translated as “universal life energy.” Animal Reiki Source.

Mollie Receiving Reiki
Mollie Receiving Reiki


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 practices of Reiki help 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 practitioners hands.

Easy for anyone to learn and use, Reiki can do no harm, even when used by the most novice practitioner. It always goes to the deepest source of the problem and always supports a path towards balance and harmony. –Kathleen Prasad, Animal Reiki Source

How can Reiki heal animals?

  • Addresses any issue at any level: physical, mental, emotional and spiritual.
  • Gentle and non-invasive, but powerful.
  • Finds the source of the problem and brings healing, whether we know the problem or not.
  • Speeds up healing after surgery or illness, and relieves pain.
  • Reduces side-effects of drugs and other treatments.
  • Improves behavior problems and heals anxiety-related problems.
  • When physical healing isn’t possible, it eases the transition to death.

The Animal Reiki Experience

Reiki is not about healing as much as it is a journey to the center of the universe—ourselves! It is about recognizing oneness and being a true part of all there is. Reiki practice is a place of peace where we can share in the deep and true love that IS oneness.

When healing occurs so does the innate understanding which many humans already know: the power of love in true and deep healing. Universal or divine energy IS Reiki and we are truly lucky to be able to take this journey of learning of ourselves in Reiki practice. Why are so many animal lovers drawn to learn Reiki? It is because animals resonate at a higher vibration than humans, and they attract us into their lives so that we may learn and heal as they offer us their unconditional love.

Reiki as a Part of Daily Life at BrightHaven

Harley Receiving Reiki from Animal Reiki Teacher Kathleen Prasad, Animal Reiki Source

Animal Reiki practice has become an integral part of life at BrightHaven.  Each of the  staff has received animal Reiki training and attunement from Kathleen Prasad, expanding and enriching our relationships with our animal family.

During times of transition and emotional or incarnate obstacles, Reiki becomes a valuable part of our work in health and healing. BrightHaven animals were already known for their longevity and astonishing returns to health. Our formula for balance, healing and classical veterinary homeopathy is the chosen modality of healthcare. Also infused into daily life at BrightHaven was the application of flower essences, Feng Shui, and a natural raw meat-based diet with nutritional supplements.

Our journey into the world of Reiki finally began in 2005. We had become so inspired by what natural medicine can do for animals that we decided we would offer seminars at the sanctuary to help spread the word about natural healing. Soon after that, Kathleen appeared, as if by magic, to request a meeting to discuss holding her seminars at BrightHaven. That day heralded a new beginning as we started on our journey with animal Reiki.

During animal Reiki sessions by Kathleen and her students, BrightHaven animals experienced a deep state of peace as the Reiki clears imbalances and compliments all other forms of treatment. BrightHaven has become all the more peaceful and harmonious thanks to Reiki. We have also found Reiki especially valuable during an end of life transition. On a daily basis, Animal Reiki brings even more depth to our relationships with our animal family and the healing work we do.

Fundamental Questions About Animal Reiki

What does Reiki Do?

  • Heals at physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual levels
  • Complements both conventional and alternative healing methods
  • Heals the origin of health issues
  • Promotes energetic harmony and well-being
  • Can relieve symptoms and reduce pain
  • Accelerates healing of illnesses and injuries
  • Promotes relaxation and stress relief

How is Reiki practiced?

Animal Reiki by Kathleen Prasad
Kathleen Prasad

Reiki can be practiced directly with the animal present or at a distance, even many miles or countries away. Because Reiki can flow in this fashion, it is ideal for some animals that do not wish for direct contact or hands-on treatment, but still want to benefit from the healing energy. The average length of a Reiki treatment is 30-60 minutes.

How Is Animal Reiki Learned?

Reiki is learned by an attunement of energetic flow during an initiation by the teacher, who received their own initiation through a lineage of Reiki practitioners. Animal Reiki is a practice of Reiki specific to animals. Many people have unique experiences in connecting with and learning from the animals themselves. To be a clear channel for Reiki, students practice meditation and the principles of Reiki as a lifestyle, as well as the five original Reiki precepts.

The Five Original Reiki Precepts

They are all promises—that for today only:

Do Not Anger

Do Not Worry

Be Humble

Be Honest in Your Work

Be Compassionate to Yourself and Others

Thoughts from the President and Founder of BrightHaven:

Gail Pope & Woody
BrightHaven Founder,
Gail Pope & Woody

As so many before me, I had always been conscious of the heat in my hands and accepted it as energy. I had experienced, too, some astonishing healing of animals as I laid my hands on or close to them.

I did not question these miracles too closely and had learned to accept them as a wonderful part of life. When Reiki first came to BrightHaven, I was avidly reading as much as I could about life, and various philosophies such as Buddhism and Hinduism, and had thoroughly enjoyed my education into the world of Paramahansa Yogananda, a spiritual leader, who opened my mind further with his books entitled Autobiography of a Yogi and Divine Will Healing.

I knew already that this was “not about me,” but did not quite see where and how this energy could fit into the grand scheme of things. Kathleen’s first seminar was to be the first of many, as I stepped gladly along this new path that opened suddenly and so very clearly before me.

Over the years I have taken all of Kathleen’s classes here and learned more than I can say. I have learned more about life and love and joy and the wisdom of Mother Nature, but above all I have learned that to be able to offer 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 receive. As I continued on the journey of animal Reiki and developed a relationship with Kathleen, whilst following in the footsteps of her own mentor, Frans Steine of The International House of Reiki, I came to believe that Kathleen has begun to resonate at a level of love and kindness that allows her to attract and share universal wisdom with other beings while progressing on her own journey.

As I have become more used to the energy of Reiki, I have found I can utilize it in an instant as it is always available. I consciously invite Reiki to join me at the beginning of my day and offer it to my family, friends and out to the universe at bedtime. During my day I offer Reiki to those not feeling well or out of sorts—and don’t forget Reiki can be offered to human beings just as easily and effectively as animal beings! For me, though, the single most important benefit of this gentle healing method comes towards the end of life, at a time when there is nothing left to do but await transition. It is at that time when humans often feel completely ineffective and wish they could do more, or be a part of the journey in some better fashion.

Now we can. To offer Reiki during transition, and sometimes the days or weeks previously, is to feel something miraculous taking place, as Reiki offers healing, peace and bliss to all involved. Here at BrightHaven we have long held the belief that healing is needed for wellness and also for transition to the next life, and we see just that as we offer Reiki. Reiki can be offered to the poor wet fly just rescued from the sink, the bird inadvertently caught by the cat (!), the bugs on our wall, more terrified of us than we of them, the animal or human injured on the road, the sad situation seen on TV or heard about on the radio, and on and on. In fact Reiki can be offered for the highest good of all beings at any time. In fact it seems to me that the healing goodness of Reiki may be an essential part in the healing of our planet. The animal Reiki practitioner is taught an exacting code of standards and ethics by which to live and practice his or her art, and I would like to present here for you the animal Reiki practitioner’s code of ethics as developed by Kathleen, the Founder of ARS, in order you may see and better understand the level of commitment given to their work by Animal Reiki practitioners or teachers. Thank you, Reiki. Gail Pope

Animal Reiki Practitioner Code of Ethics

Developed by Kathleen Prasad, Founder of Animal Reiki Source

Animal Reiki Source by Kathleen Prasad

Guiding Principles:

I believe the animals are equal partners in the healing process. I honor the animals as being not only my clients, but also my teachers in the journey of healing. I understand that all animals have physical, mental, emotional and spiritual aspects, to which Reiki can bring profound healing responses. I believe that bringing Reiki to the human/animal relationship is transformational to the human view of the animal kingdom. I dedicate myself to the virtues of humility, integrity, compassion and gratitude in my Reiki practice.

In working on myself, I follow these practices:

  • I incorporate the Five Reiki Precepts into my daily life and Reiki practice.
  • I commit myself to a daily practice of self-healing and spiritual development so that I can be a clear and strong channel for healing energy.
  • I nurture a belief in the sacred nature of all beings, and in the value and depth of animal kind as our partners on this planet.
  • I listen to the wisdom of my heart, remembering that we are all One.

In working in the community, I hold the following goals:

  • I model the values of partnership, compassion, humility, gentleness and gratitude in my life and with the animals, teaching by example.
  • I work to create professional alliances and cooperative relationships with other Reiki practitioners/teachers, animal health-care providers and animal welfare organizations in my community.
  • I strive to educate my community in its understanding of the benefits of Reiki for animals.
  • I continually educate myself to maintain and enhance my professional competence so that I uphold the integrity of the profession.
  • I consider myself an ally to the veterinary and animal health community. I work to support their efforts in achieving animal wellness and balance. I honor other disciplines and their practitioners.

In working with the human companions of the animals, I will:

  • Share information before the treatment about my healing philosophy, the Reiki healing system and what to expect in a typical treatment, as well as possible outcomes, including the possibility of healing reactions.
  • Provide a clear policy ahead of time regarding fees, length of treatment and cancellation policy, as well as “postponement” policy, should the animal not want the treatment that day.
  • Never diagnose. I will always refer clients to a licensed veterinarian when appropriate.
  • Honor the privacy of the animals and their human companions.
  • Share intuition received during Reiki treatments with compassion and humility, for the purpose of supporting their understanding of the healing process.
  • Respect the human companion‘s right to choose the animal‘s healing journey, selecting the methods, both holistic and/or conventional that he or she deems most appropriate, with the support and advice of a trusted veterinarian.

In working with the animals, I follow these guidelines:

  • I work in partnership with the animal.
  • I always ask permission of the animal before beginning, and respect his or her decision to accept or refuse any treatment. I listen intuitively and observe the animal‘s body language in determining the response.
  • I allow each animal to choose how to receive his or her treatment; thus each treatment could be a combination of hands-on, short distance and/or distant healing, depending on the animal‘s preference.
  • I let go of my expectations about how the treatment should progress and/or how the animal should behave during the treatment, and simply trust Reiki.
  • I accept the results of the treatment without judgment and with gratitude toward Reiki and the animal‘s openness and participation in the process.

Copyright © 2011, Animal Reiki Source For anyone interested in learning more about Animal Reiki and taking a class at BrightHaven Kathleen Prasad’s website at

BrightHaven & Animal Reiki

BrightHaven Animal Retreat on Working with Animals and the System of Reiki Kathleen Prasad interviews Gail Pope from BrightHaven Animal Retreat ( for the International House of Reiki. Gail talks about the benefits of working with Reiki and animals.

Kathleen Prasad ( is a graduate of the International House of Reiki and is a renowned animal Reiki practitioner and teacher.

Other sources: The International House of Reiki:  For a list of recommended reading please see the BrightHaven Resource Guide or visit or