Connecting with Your Animal Companions

The following principles are critical in building a relationship with any animal, but in particular animals who are first experiencing contact with human beings or who have been traumatized. You will be astounded at the improvement in your interactions by taking a few simple steps!
  1. Check your emotional state- Animals are highly sensitized and will react even to subtle feelings. If you’re aware of feeling stressed or frustrated, best to connect at another time.  If coming back later is not an option, do what you can to get into a better space. 
  2. Get grounded- The more centered and peaceful you are feeling, the more positive the interaction will be.  Imagine yourself as a big strong tree with roots going five miles down into the center of the earth and five miles out.  Send any negative thoughts or feelings down your roots and bring up peace.
  3. Approach calmly, with love and reverence-Focus on feelings of respect and appreciation.  Connect with your heart and the energy of love.  You can mentally communicate-"I love you. You are safe with me".  I once had a Bobcat come up on my deck when I did this!
  4. Be aware of distance-Be prepared to keep more at a distance initially, until the animal is comfortable with your presence.  Turning your back may be helpful since this behavior is uncharacteristic of a predator.  Check into body language for signals and come closer as the animal feels more relaxed and receptive.
  5. Spend time together with no expectations-Spend significant time just sitting or standing quietly in his/her presence. Horses in particular have concerns about meeting expectations and to connect without any will provide the space for them to open up and bond at a deeper level.
Animals love the quiet space that is created with mediation.  These meditations should not be directed out at your animal companion. The focus should be on creating a space for your animal to come into-if he or she wishes.  Giving your animal that choice will build connection and increase the probability of a shared space.
  1.  Ideally, after practicing steps one through four above, sit quietly and breathe love and light into the space two finger widths below your navel, the first "hara" or energy center.  As you breathe out, imagine love and peace radiating through your body out into the space all around you and several feet out.  Continue for five or six breaths and continue to breathe normally, imagining your animal companion moving into the loving space that was created.
*As taught by Kathleen Prasad, Animal Reiki Source.