2020 was the year I started to volunteer with the RSPCA! I am passionate about animal welfare (and a big softie), and so I decided to foster a cat in need of a safe, loving home! Shortly after Tiggs (pictured with me on the right) came home with me, I started to notice a remarkable change in his behaviour when I gave him Reiki! He would become physically relaxed lie down and get a very blissed out look - there would also be purring and some kitten-like rolling around on the floor!
Not only that, but Tiggs' overall emotional state and wellbeing levels started to change too. He went from being a highly stressed, hyper-vigilant boy (who would jump at the slightest noise, and cower if he accidentally knocked something over or caught me with a claw in play) to a chilled-out elegant lounge-lizard, stretching out on his favourite radiator or window-sill! Don't get me wrong - Tiggs still gets stressed at times, but his general demeanour and emotional resilience have improved so much - he's like a different boy!
So of course I offered the RSPCA my services as a volunteer, to come in and give Reiki to some more of the RSPCA's residents! It had helped my Tiggs so much, and I wanted to help as many animals in need as I possibly could.
Fast forward to today: I'm now a qualified Animal Reiki therapist, and still volunteer at the RSPCA each week (I even have my own locker there now!). My time there teaches me so much, allows me to connect with and help empower and heal beautiful, gentle souls who have often been through trauma, abuse and physical issues. It can be heart-breaking at times, but their amazing resilience and ability to trust again is so strong - they're my heroes! I love them all, and want to help them as much as I can.
(In case anyone was wondering, Tiggs is a foster fail! )
Ema has been volunteering with her services for the RSPCA Warrington, Halton & St Helens branch for a while now and the change's she has made are remarkable! Ema is always so calm, understanding and patient with the animals. She is always asking about different ways each animal prefers to receive Reiki and is extremely adaptable to suit each animal's needs. Most of the animals which come into our care have suffered abuse or neglect which Ema show's true compassion towards. Ema's knowledge and skill set is such a fantastic asset to have at our branch. We are all immensely grateful for the time and commitment Ema give's and would 100% recommend her service to anyone and any animal which needs additional help/support.
Animal Welfare Team Leader
I'm also incredibly fortunate to be a participating in an Animal Reiki study with the University of Chester and Warrington Halton and St Helens' RSPCA! Surprisingly enough, there's not a great deal of data out there about the effects of Animal Reiki, so what better way to help open up this amazing therapy to more animals in need, than by doing something to address that!
I approached the University of Chester's animal studies department, via their amazing Business Hub, and pitched the idea of a study to look into the behavioural effects of Reiki on rescue dogs. So data gathering is now under way, and you can see Dennis on the left, enjoying the side-effects of my sending distance Reiki to one of his kennel-mates, during a data collection day in July 2021. I should mention that when I first met him, Dennis was an incredibly skittish, fearful boy who shied away from my hands and kept trying to hide behind me. From one extreme to the other! Don't you just love that moment of "must.....keep....eyes..... zzzzzz".
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