Pet of the Month: June 2013 Winner: Marlene

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Marlene, a very sweet, beautiful but insecure and hyper Bordeaux.  Nothing is known about Marlene’s past history as she was adopted recently by Julie.  We can tell that she is very attached to her new family, that she loves people and other dogs. 

I was asked to give Marlene a massage.  However, as I began, she was so anxious and hyperactive, it was impossible for me to touch her to give her a massage.  So, I decided to offer Marlene Reiki first.  (I do this many times when the animal is anxious and I’m unable to touch them.) 

I always sit on the floor when working with small animals to be at their level (so to speak).  After 15 minutes, Marlene turned around and put her paw in my hand.  (I interpreted that to mean that she wanted my hands on her.)  I placed one hand on her heart and another on her shoulder.  After another 5 minutes, Marlene let out this large, long sigh.  I could visibly see the tension leave Marlene’s body. 

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 After that, I started my massage for Marlene …. and she was very responsive to my touch.  As I mention in other articles, dogs are very expressive and definitely not shy about letting me know what they like and do not like …. If an animal likes what I’m doing, their eyes drifted shut, they can moan, sigh, and in general, relax. 

 If an animal is uncomfortable with what I’m doing, I will get all different kinds of reactions:  their lips curled up and bare their teeth, they roll away from the area I’m working on, can get up from my massage mat and shake, stretch, move and/or sit across the room from me. 

In Marlene’s case, sometimes she would pick her head up and look at me (telling me “don’t touch me there”) and when I was working on her right hind leg,  she got up off the mat, walked across the room and sat leaning against the wall.  I let her sit there for a few minutes, then called her back to me/the massage mat, she immediately came back over to me, laid down on the massage mat, and I continued her massage. 

Please note:  I went back the next week to give Marlene another massage.  When Marlene saw me, her reaction was completely different than our first meeting:  Marlene was happy to see me.  Even before I finished putting the massage mat on the floor, she was already laying on it. 

Reiki is ideal for use with animals because it is gentle, noninvasive and doesn't require physical contact.  It doesn't cause stress, discomfort, or pain, and yet yields powerful results.  Animals respond intuitively to Reiki's power to support the healing of emotional, behavioral, and physical illnesses and injuries.  Reiki is now being recognized by many hospitals as an alternative form of pain management for their chemotherapy patients and many hospitals have Reiki Practitioners on staff. 

For further information about Reiki, please go here.