By Jeri Mills, M.D.
Having been a small animal veterinarian, and always living in a house filled with pets, I have had many occasions to offer Reiki to animals. Puppies and kittens, dogs, cats and horses have all benefited from energy healing.
One of my favorite animal healing experiences began on Labor Day, 1997 when I first saw my dog, Katie. I had just put my horse up in her stall and was getting ready to head home from the ranch where she was boarded when my friend Jennifer came into the barn. She seemed a little worried.
“Oh, Jeri, I’m glad you’re still here,” she said. “I was hiking out in the desert this morning and found a puppy wandering around by herself. She’s in pretty rough shape. She’s so weak she can barely walk and I think she may be blind. It may be too late to save her, but I couldn’t just leave her there.”
She looked at me a little sheepishly. “Would you mind taking a look at her for me? My vet’s office is closed for the holiday and I hate to pay to take the pup to the emergency clinic if you think she doesn’t have a chance. Still, I don’t want to drop her off at the pound either. I know they’d just kill her because she’s sick.”
I followed Jennifer to her car and she opened the door. Cringing in the back seat was one of the most pitiful scraps of life I had ever seen. I was looking at what appeared to be little more than a skeleton, loosely draped in an over-large coat of brittle, fawn colored hair. The creature’s eyes were obscured by a thick, purulent discharge.
I lifted the puppy out of the car. Her little body sagged in my arms. When I gently lifted and then released the fold of skin at the back of her neck, it stayed tented in the air. The puppy was too dehydrated for her skin into fall back to its normal position.
“Do you think it has eyes?” Jen asked anxiously.
I wiped the puppy’s eyes with a damp cloth. Once the thick coating had been removed, her eyes looked surprisingly healthy. I decided the discharge had probably formed because she was too dehydrated to make tears.
The little dog tilted her head towards me, and I was struck by the jaunty angle of her ears. They seemed to promise hope for that woebegone little creature.
“Would she drink any water for you, Jen?”
“Oh!” she looked embarrassed, “I never thought to offer her any.”
I set the puppy on the ground in front of the plastic bowl my friend had filled with about a pint of water. The dog perked up immediately. Once she started drinking, she didn’t lift her head until the bowl was empty. When she finished her water, the little creature seemed to wilt in front of me as if the effort of drinking had drained her last reserve of energy.
I picked the puppy up. She lay her head on my shoulder, gave a long sigh, and snuggled tightly against my chest. My heart melted.
“I’m not allowed to have dogs at my apartment,” Jennifer informed me. “Do you think you could keep her till we can find her a home?”
The puppy barely moved when I carried her to my car and drove the ten miles to my house. After we arrived, I lay on the bed and set the sick puppy on my chest. The instant I placed my hands over her bony back, the healing energy began to flow. I dozed off. When I woke two hours later, the pup still slept on my chest and the Reiki was still flowing.
I took the pup outside to relieve herself and then offered her food and water. She was still too sick to eat but had a long drink. When she was through, we returned to my room. I lay down and plopped her back on my chest. As soon as my hands approached the little body, it drew the Reiki from my hands like a vacuum cleaner. The energy was still moving hours later when we woke for our second trip outside. We repeated the process alternating Reiki-filled naps with brief trips outside. At 1 A.M., the Reiki stopped flowing.
The sickly little creature I brought home had been transformed into the most active puppy ever to enter my household. She kept the rest of my pets awake for the rest of the night with her antics.
From that day forward, Katie-dog ruled my household.