When I tell people that I’ve talked to animals such as hermit crabs, snakes, fish or lizards their first question is generally, “But what could they possibly have to say?”
The answer is — a LOT! Animals of all kinds have opinions about their world, even if their world is as small as a terrarium.
One such opinionated being is Martin — a Leopard Gecko. Martin came to live with my client, Doreen, when Martin was given to Doreen’s husband by a client. As with all animals who come into her house, Doreen took Martin under her wing.
I had been talking to Doreen’s animals for many years, so Doreen knew that communicating with Martin to find out what he wanted and how he felt would be very helpful.
Doreen wanted to know how Martin liked his food. Martin said that he really liked the meal worms they’d been giving him. But his FAVORITE food was the crickets! It was so much fun to hunt them down and eat them Martin said. He loved the chase and would start stalking them as soon as crickets were put into his cage. Martin thought is was great that he could eat a few and still have others hopping around for hunting later. Doreen said that everyone in the family had noticed how much fun Martin had stalking the crickets and they loved watching him and cheering him on!
Doreen wanted to know how many crickets Martin wanted at a time, since they’d tried different numbers of them. Martin indicated to me that 6-10 crickets at a time was OK . . . but if Doreen gave them to him on a regular basis, 5 or 6 was enough. Doreen said she’d be sure to give Martin the crickets regularly, since he enjoyed them so much.
When I asked if there was anything else Martin liked to eat, he showed me something soft and squishy feeling that was whitish in color. Martin said it popped or smashed in his mouth, which he found enjoyable. It really didn’t seem to be fruit, but I couldn’t figure out what else it might be . . . Doreen said she’d do some research to see if she could figure it out. When I talked to Doreen the next time, she said that she figured out that Martin was talking about the moisture beads that come with the crickets. She’d checked to be sure they wouldn’t be toxic for Martin (they aren’t) and she had observed Martin chewing on them and seeking them out, so she figured that was what he was referring to.
We asked Martin how he liked his terrarium. He liked the plants and he really liked the heat lamp — it kept him nice and warm, which is important for a reptile. However, Martin said that when he was chasing down the crickets, he got warm on his own —so they could turn down the heat lamp a little when the chase was on. Doreen said she’d keep an eye on that.
We asked if Martin liked the location of his terrarium. Martin said he did — he said he felt like everyone paid attention to him, that they were always watching him, which he liked. I asked Doreen where his terrarium was (my feeling was that it was in a busy room, at the center of “the action”) — Doreen said Martin’s terrarium was in the family room next to the TV! Martin said he liked it when the family would come over and talk to him, but didn’t like it when someone tapped the glass. Doreen said she talked to Martin all the time. She said she would remind her children not to tap on the glass.
A few months later, Doreen and her family moved to a new home and Doreen wanted to check to see how Martin liked his new location. Martin asked if he could be moved to a “busier” spot in the new house. Martin felt like he was no longer at the center of the action and wanted more attention. Doreen admitted that he was no longer in the family room, but hoped that she’d be able to get him resettled there soon, after they finished getting settled in their new home.
Martin also said that he felt cooler in the new location than the old — it didn’t feel drafty when he showed it to me, but somehow not as warm. My feeling was that Martin’s terrarium was against an outside (rather than interior) wall — Doreen said this was correct and that would account for the decreased warmth. I suggested that she get a warmer bulb for his terrarium, which Doreen said she would do and she would get Martin moved to a better spot as soon as possible.
Doreen’s family is settled now in their new home and Martin’s terrarium has been relocated to a “busier” part of the house. He has a warmer bulb in his heat lamp and is continuing to enjoy the hunt for his favorite food, the crickets. Doreen and her family are giving Martin lots of attention. Martin is, again, a happy gecko!
“My biggest concern was that all of my animals have been mammals and I had no idea about reptiles! So, talking to Martin seemed like the best way to learn about Martin. I really did learn a lot from him. Martin knows my voice when I am in the room talking and he will come to the side of the terrarium and visit with me. Talking to Martin has been the best bonding for us!” — Doreen L., PA
I met Dualin Gun, a handsome Quarter Horse, only a few days after he was born. In reality, I knew him even before that — I’d been giving equine massage to his Mom through out her pregnancy.
Dualin’s person, a long time western horse-person named Gwen, couldn’t wait for Dualin to be born. His sire was a very successful western working cowhorse and his mother was Gwen’s own beautiful Quarter Horse mare, Charm. Gwen was confident that Dualin would would become the reining horse she had always wanted.
One of my favorite memories of Dualin occurred when he was about 2 years old. I was in Gwen’s barn massaging one of her other horses and we noticed Dualin standing in the field behind the barn. Gwen yelled “ Hello Dualin ” and waved to him . . . he must have thought she was calling him because he headed for the barn at a dead run! There was a moment of suspended motion before he hit the thin wire stretched across the open gait (he was thinking, “ Should I? ”) then he broke through the wire and kept coming toward the barn at a gallup! It was clear he wasn’t going to stop before he got to the barn, so I dragged the horse I was working on into a stall. But Gwen stood calmly in the middle of the aisle and waited for Dualin. He stopped on a dime, right in front of Gwen and she never flinched — just patted him on the nose when he stopped. Gwen trusted Dualin totally that day — and still does.
Gwen started Dualin’s training at home and followed up with a local trainer. We talked to Dualin when needed — to explain training issues so he could understand better what he needed to do. Dualin tried hard to do as he was asked. When the time was right, Gwen asked me to talk to Dualin about going to a professional trainer to learn reining. Dualin said he would try very hard — he knew how important this was to Gwen and wanted to be a good partner for her.
Dualin had been away at the trainers for a couple months when Gwen showed me a video of Dualin that the trainer had sent her. The trainer was trying to get Dualin to do a simple exercise to prepare him for fast reining spins. But Dualin kept trying to do the spins, not the simple exercise! When the trainer corrected him, Dualin cooperated . . . but Dualin seemed very unhappy the whole time.
We talked to Dualin that day . . . he said that reining was boring. He felt sad and unhappy doing the reining work. He said he could do everything they were trying to teach him already. Dualin said he knew how to do spins, sliding stops — everything. He didn’t understand why they wouldn’t just let him do it! Gwen confirmed that the trainer agreed that Dualin could do everything but he didn’t seem happy. I asked Dualin if he would be happy doing reining if he he was allowed to just do it . . . he said no, because it was SO boring — but he said he would do it if Gwen wanted him to. I asked Dualin what he wanted to do . . . he said, “ I need a cow. ” Gwen didn’t know how he could know about cows, since he had never met one — but Dualin was very clear with me that what he wanted was to work with cows.
When I told Gwen this, she knew she couldn’t force Dualin to just do reining. The last thing Gwen wanted to do was to break Dualin’s spirit. We asked Dualin if he’d be willing to do reining if she also did some cow work with him — Dualin said that would be OK, but he would only do reining if he could work with cows too.
Shortly after this Gwen and her horses moved to FL. Gwen watched Dualin the first day he was turned out in his new field. As he wandered around exploring, he suddenly focused on the fence area that was shared by the neighbor’s field, where a small herd of cows was standing by the fence. What Gwen observed amazed her . . . she saw Dualin go to the fence and start trying to work the cows through the fence! He had not had any training with cows — Dualin was working on pure instinct! Clearly, Dualin was a cowhorse through and through — working cows was the job he was hard wired to do. Gwen knew in her heart that she had to let Dualin do what his heart wanted to do.
Dualin received training in working cows and spent a summer on a working ranch in Montana with his trainer. We talked to Dualin while he was away — he was SO happy working the cows! He loved the long days, the independence and the trust that his rider had in him. Dualin loved every minute of his work that summer, but missed Gwen and was glad to be home with her when the summer ended.
Gwen and Dualin went on to train and compete in working cowhorse competitions. Gwen said they didn’t always win, but they always had fun. Gwen says that Dualin always knew what he needed to do to get the cow — she just has to “ get out of his way ” so he can do it.
Gwen tells the story of one time at a lesson when Dualin was so determined to get the cow, that when the cow ran and through the arena fence – then plowed into the seating area, Dualin kept right on the cow and went right through the rubble of the fence and seating, right behind the cow! That might sound scary, but Gwen said she had complete faith in Dualin and knew he’d keep her safe — and he always does.
Dualin is retired from showing but he and Gwen still take trail rides and Dualin insists on trailering to every horse show with the horse Gwen is showing — he will NOT be left out of the action! As Dualin’s Mom did before him, Dualin watches out for Gwen — and continues to bring joy and laughter to her life.
“ I feel very blessed to have Sky in my life and in my horses’ lives. She provides that missing link which enables me to be sure I am doing the best I can for each of them. I feel more in tune with their well being and am confident that I am not taking them in a direction that they are not equipped for mentally or physically. Sky’s ‘conversations’ with several of my horses have truly warmed my heart and made me feel so much closer to them. ” — Gwen A., FL
All animals, just as all people, like to have a purpose. But some dogs have a very special purpose — to search and find people buried in piles of rubble. These dogs are remarkable in every way and it has been my privilege to talk to a number of them.
One such dog is Aedan, an Australian Shepard, whose person is Jane. In October, Jane talked to me about Aedan, who was in training to be a search dog. Jane was very concerned. Aedan wasn’t progressing with his training. Jane said Aedan seemed confused and didn’t seem to understand what he was supposed to do. In fact, he was actually regressing in his training.
Aedan showed me that he would constantly stop and look to Jane for guidance during training. Jane confirmed that this was exactly what he did. Aedan was not at all confident and kept feeling like he was “ doing it wrong. ” My feeling was that Aedan was a very sensitive dog, which made him sensitive to his person’s energies and to the energies of the practice “ victims ”. Jane said that the ” victim ” was crucial to the training, since the reward for the “ find ” was the “ victim’s ” interaction/play with the dog. I suggested that she try being more of a cheerleader for Aedan. He needed and wanted Jane’s approval. I suggested that Jane correct Aedan if he went wrong, but then let it go — support him and encourage him, not be tough on him. Jane really wanted Aedan to succeed, so she agreed to try this.
Next we focused on making sure Aedan understood what he needed to do — that when Jane said, “ Go find ” he needed to search the whole rubble pile until he found the buried person’s scent, then stop and “ alert ” (bark continuously) until he was released. Aedan showed me that he was only barking once, very weakly, because he wasn’t sure that was what he was supposed to do. I assured him that the bark alert was correct — but that he needed to keep barking until he was released and got to play with a toy for a reward. I also suggested that he use his “ big boy ” bark — he said he understood now and would be able to do what he needed to do.
Jane thought it might help Aedan if he understood what his job was about. I asked Aedan what he thought the training was all about — he said he thought it was a game and about playing with the toy at the end — it didn’t seem important to him. I told Aedan that it wasn’t really about the toy — that he was training for a very important job that only very special dogs like him could do. I told him that he could help keep people from crossing to Spirit too soon by finding them in the rubble. I told him that if he could learn his job well, he would get to travel to new places and find people he’d never met before. I told Aedan that Jane couldn’t do the work (the scenting and searching) that only he could do it. I reminded him what his job was — to search the rubble pile, find the scent, follow it to source and bark continuously to alert where the scent was coming from. I told him that not many dogs could do this work — but he had the skills, the nose and the smarts to do it! I could feel him puff up with pride in himself for the first time in the conversation!
The next practice, Jane said she was a cheerleader for Aedan — and he was a star! He worked independently, was able to deal with shifting rubble — even a board that flipped up and hit him. When Aedan found the “ victim ”, he gave his “ big boy ” bark! In Jane’s words, “ The cheerleader in me told Aedan he was awesome and physically rubbed and petted him — could a dog hold his head higher? ”
We checked in with Aedan in November. He’d been doing very well. He said he was having fun finding new people (practice “ victims ” he didn’t know). It felt to me that with each new experience, Aedan was becoming more confident — he knew what he needed to do, he knew his work was important and he was having fun doing it. Aedan had found his purpose!
In January, Jane asked me to talk to Aedan again. Jane had taken Aedan to FL to practice at a search dog training area there. I asked Aedan how he liked searching in a new place and finding new people. His energy was very confident. He said he knew his job is important. He said he was “ thorough and careful ” on the rubble piles and that he liked the puzzle of figuring out how to be safe and find the person.
Jane asked if it would be possible for Aedan to search faster — not less careful, just quicker. I asked Aedan if he had to “ think ” about being safe — he said he didn’t. He said, “ I feel the rubble with the pads of my feet ” and could jump off to a safe spot without needing to think about it. I suggested that he try leaving being safe on the rubble piles to his intuition (which he was already doing) so he could focus on scenting and searching — that if he could do this, he’d be able to search faster. He said he’d never thought of that, but he felt he could do it.
We asked Aedan if he thought the fun part of searching was playing with the toy after he found the person or searching and finding the person — he said it was searching and finding that was the most fun — that the real reward was finding the person. Jane asked if Aedan understood that he was special — he said, “ Yes — I’m not like other dogs. I get to go on the part of the plane where the people go! ”
Aedan is still in training, but Jane hopes that soon he will be ready to test his skills so he can join the elite group of dogs who help people in desperate need — people whose lives depend on the dog’s skills, courage and determination to find those who need to be found.
“ I was ready to wash Aedan from the training and came to Sky as a last resort. Sky, thanks for finding out the issues/roadblocks Aedan was having. I really like seeing his focus and determination. Aedan had several agility/rubble issues in training this week that shook him, but he sucked it up and continued! He did not freeze! He pushed ahead — I’m so proud of him! ” — Jane S., MD
One of the most common issues animals have is anxiety when their person leaves them. For some animals, even having their person leave for 5 minutes can cause anxiety and for others, being gone for work is a major issue.
Inevitably, there will be times when you need to be away for longer periods — a week, two weeks, even a month or more. It’s always a good idea to let your animals know you’ll be away and for how long, where they’ll be staying while you’re gone and who will be taking care of them and also to answer any other concerns they might have. This can be done through a communication session or by connecting with your animals yourself. Most animals will do just fine when their person is away for longer periods, whether they stay at home with a live in pet sitter, have a pet sitter visit every day or if they spend the time in a kennel or cattery.
Others . . . not so much!
For the worriers, one of the things that I’ve found that can be really helpful is what I call a “check-in”. These are short communication sessions that I do telepathically, while the person is away — without the animal’s person on the phone with me — to make sure the animal are doing OK, to find out if they are having any problems and to remind the animal when their person will be back. After the session, I email the animal’s person to let them know how their animal is doing.
Recently I had a client, Donetta, who was going to Europe for twelve days. She has two older dogs — Jazzy, who is very relaxed and goes with the flow and Charlie, who was a rescue and came with issues. Through previous communications, we’d found out Charlie was claustrophobic, especially when confined to a crate or confined in the house during the day alone. Donetta worked out a solution that worked well for Charlie. Before Donetta’s two week trip, she hired a pet sitter to be at the house at night and care for the dogs — but she was concerned that Charlie would worry, due to the change in his routine. We scheduled a communication session before her trip, so both dogs would know what the plan would be. Charlie was concerned, but was reassured that I’d check in with them while Donetta was away. I checked in with Charlie and Jazzy twice while Donetta was away. Jazzy was fine, but she was concerned about Charlie! The first time I checked in with Charlie, he was trying to be brave, but was concerned about when Donetta would be home. Although the dogs were cared for, the pet sitter was not following through completely, which concerned Charlie. I reassured him and confirmed that he was OK, being fed and was warm enough. Charlie’s energy felt much better (less worried) at the end of the talk. During the second check in, Charlie told me he knew Donetta would be home soon and couldn’t wait to greet her!
Sometimes the worrier is the person, not the animal. One of my clients, Kristin, had the opportunity to travel over seas for a month with her husband. Kristin scheduled a pet sitter who she had total confidence in . . . but Kristin was still concerned about her beloved kitties — especially Jasmine, who was older and was having some health issues. Kristin asked if I could check in with her cats twice a week, which I did. The cats couldn’t wait for Kristin to come home and they were grateful for the check ins . . . like having a friend call to make sure you’re OK. One day I received an email from Kristin between check ins. The pet sitter had emailed and said that Jasmine wouldn’t eat her wet food. Jasmine tended to be thin, so not eating was a big problem. The pet sitter tried several cans of food from the open case of canned food, but no luck — Jasmine wouldn’t eat any of it! Kristin asked me to find out what was going on. When I asked Jasmine, she said the canned food smelled “bad” to her. I asked if she was hungry and she said yes — she wanted to eat, but not if it smelled “bad”. I emailed this information to Kristin — she instructed the pet sitter to open a tin of wet food from a different case of cat food. Jasmine immediately ate the food from the new case without a problem! Perhaps the food had gone “off” or been contaminated somehow . . . but finding out from the cat what the problem was prevented an unnecessary vet visit and worry for Kristin!
Vacation should be an enjoyable experience for you and as stress free as possible for your animals. Letting your animals know what your trip plans are, how they’ll be cared for while you gone and, if needed, having “check ins” planned for the time you’re away, can go a long way toward decreasing worry for you and for them.
“ I want to tell you, Sky, how very helpful it was to have you talk to our dogs during our recent twelve day vacation. Before we left, you explained to the dogs that we would be gone and when we would return. You explained to them who would be caring for them and how it was going to work. I believe the most important part however was that you talked to the dogs twice while we were abroad and emailed us after you talked to them to let us know how they were doing. This was such a help for the dogs — and for us! Having you checking on them during our vacation was helpful to all involved and eased our worry immensely. Thank you for your wonderful help with the 4 legged ones in our family and the 2 legged ones too! ” — Donetta Z., CO
I talked to Abigail and Elliot the first time at a metaphysical fair in Denver, CO. Elliot is a very handsome Siamese cat and Abigail is a lovely Siamese cross cat. Their person is a kind and caring woman named Cindy.
Since that first conversation, we’ve talked many times. Cindy is so happy to be able to find out what her kitties are thinking! Cindy has an excellent intuition and often tells me that I confirm what she felt was happening with her cats – but it’s good to hear it direct from them, she says.
It was clear from the beginning that these two cats couldn’t be more different! Abigail is very self assured and relaxed about everything. Elliot is a worrier and needs lots of reassurance. When we ask Abigail how she is, generally she’ll say, “I’m fine – but you should talk to Elliot.” When I ask Elliot how he’s doing – he tells me everything!
Elliot has some health issues we’ve had to address – pancreatitis and hypothyroidism. The pancreatitis makes Elliot nauseous – which can lead to vomiting at times, but this improves if he eats regularly. But it always came down to Elliot being afraid that if he ate he’d throw up. Cindy never got upset when Elliot threw up – she always told him it was OK, so he didn’t have pressure from her. But Elliot hated the indignity and the loss of control he felt when he would vomit. We talked to Elliot about this a number of times . . . still, he just couldn’t stop being upset about throwing up.
One day Cindy gave Abigail some treats, which she wolfed down – eating is never a problem for Abigail! Abigail ate the treats very quickly – and immediately vomited. It didn’t phase Abigail a bit – she just went right back to eating treats! But Cindy reported that Elliot had observed this and looked stunned.
Soon thereafter Elliot had an episode of nausea/not eating. When I spoke to Elliot, the first thing he told me about was not how he was feeling – it was that Abigail had thrown up! He couldn’t believe she’d done it (he seems to think she’s perfect) and he was stunned because, “she didn’t even care that she’d thrown up!” I suggested to him that if Abigail wasn’t worried about throwing up, he didn’t need to worry either. This was a revolutionary concept to Elliot – not caring about throwing up – but he said he’d try to remember. He’s gotten much better about not worrying if he gets nauseous/throws up and he gets back to eating much more quickly now. We asked Elliot what kind of food would taste good when he’s nauseous. He showed me something thin and not solid — Cindy said that she sometimes had given Elliot baby food. Since then, whenever Elliot has tummy troubles, baby food still goes down well.
Another issue Elliot has had was with his medication for the hypothyroidism. Elliot will not take a pill and won’t eat food with medicine in it, so the vet prescribed a cream that Cindy can rub into his ears twice a day. Elliot always ran away from Cindy when it was time to apply the cream – Cindy finally got fed up with the chase game and asked me to talk to Elliot about it. It took a few conversations but it gradually got better. Elliot had to understand that if he didn’t let Cindy apply the cream, he’d have to take a pill (Elliot admitted the cream was better than a pill), he had to understand that if he didn’t get the cream that he would go to Spirit sooner than needed (he was definitely NOT ready to go to Spirit yet) and he needed to understand that the chase game before Cindy applied the cream was NOT fun for Cindy and had to stop. I showed him a picture of what Cindy wanted – Elliot coming to her willingly when it was time for her to apply the cream, letting her apply it and getting lots of loving after – and he agreed to cooperate. He’s been quite cooperative since then – he needs a reminder now and then, but over all, he let’s Cindy apply the cream without any chasing before hand!
Elliot is always very appreciative when we talk to him and always asks me to tell Cindy that he loves her. Abigail says it’s good for Elliot to talk to me – that he really needs to talk – but it’s “nice” that I talk to her too. Elliot says that Abigail really likes it when we talk to her – but we all know she’d never say it . . . just like she doesn’t usually say directly that she loves Cindy – but we all know she does! I told Elliot that it’s always nice to talk to him and Abigail — he said, ”You’re our friend and we like to talk to you too!”
“I am so thankful to you for everything you do for Elliott and Abigail. I believe next to me your are Elliott’s favorite person!” – Cindy T., TX
Liria, a long time client of mine, received a phone call from a young woman that attends church in Liria’s community. The caller needed to find a home for her late grandmother’s nine year old cat, Mittens.
Liria knew right away that she needed to adopt Mittens and made arrangements to meet Mittens and bring her home.
We talked to Mittens before Liria picked her up, so Mittens would be prepared for the move. Mittens was wary, but said she was looking forward to going to a new home – she was not happy where she was. We told her that she’d be living with Liria’s five other cats but they were used to having new cats come into the house. I told Mittens that she’d be in a room by herself until she and the other cats were ready to meet. Mittens was nervous about meeting Liria’s cats, but felt better knowing she’d have her own space for a while.
We talked to Mittens about 10 days later. Liria was spending a lot of time with her. Mittens was still cautious, but adjusting. Liria had taken Mittens out of “her” room for a few supervised walks through the house. Mittens said she really liked Liria and “her” room — but she was just waiting for one of the cats to attack her, so she would warn them off before they got close by hissing and growling at them. When Mittens showed me this, I felt that Liria’s cats were confused by Mitten’s behavior and would just walk away or ignore her. Liria said this was exactly what happened.
Mittens showed me that in her previous home, the other cat she lived with had bullied her and attacked her. Mittens had to slink along the walls of the rooms or hide to be safe. Mittens admitted that Liria’s cats just ignored her.
I asked Mittens if she felt good when she was hissing and growling at the cats and worrying about what might happen. She said no – the tension level she felt inside her when she walked around the house felt almost painful to me. I assured Mittens that if she would stop hissing, she would feel a lot better and so would the other cats. I told Mittens that the other cats got along with each other and they would get along with her. I could feel her relax and she said she would try not to hiss.
We talked to Mittens a few days later – Liria said the change in Mittens was remarkable! Mittens was coming and asking for pets – and no longer hissing at the other cats. She was still growling at them, though – but I reminded Liria that we hadn’t asked her not to growl, only not to hiss! Liria said that she’d been leaving the door to Mitten’s room open and that she’d occasionally come out on her own and sit outside the room for a little while – a HUGE improvement!
Mittens said that she was no longer afraid of the other cats. Her energy was much more relaxed and she felt much happier. I told Mittens that if she could try not growling at the cats, she would feel even better. Liria asked me to let Mittens know that she could go anywhere she wanted in the house and lay on any surface – that there were pet stairs and chairs to the tables so she could get up there easily. Mittens wasn’t allowed on the furniture in her old home, so she wasn’t sure about this. I assured her no one would be upset, that everyone in the house – cats and people – knew how to share. I encouraged her to keep exploring the house and the screened in patio.
Another issue was that Mittens didn’t seem to know how to interact with people. She clearly had trust issues. She would accept petting, then turn and bite hard. Mittens showed me that she didn’t get much attention in her former home and didn’t like the way they picked her up so she would bite. Mittens showed me that she really enjoyed being petted – but because of the level of tension she was carrying, she could only take in so much energy from petting.
I suggested that Liria try to only pet Mittens for a few seconds at a time. She could do this over and over – pet for a few seconds, take a break, then pet again. This would help Mittens get used to petting without over loading her energetically. I told Mittens the plan and she thought that would work – she definitely didn’t want Liria to stop petting her! I asked Mittens about the biting – she said no one listened to her in her previous home and that biting was the only way to tell them to stop. I assured Mittens that Liria was a good “cat listener” and would stop if Mittens asked her to.
We talked to Mittens about a month after Liria adopted her. Liria couldn’t get over the change in Mittens! “Everything you’ve asked her to do, she’s doing – it’s amazing,” Liria stated. Mittens had been spending most of her time outside of “her” room – even getting up and stretching out on the table! The growling had stopped and she would only give a reminder hiss if one of the cats was trying to play with her – her way to say “no”. Mittens energy felt very relaxed and happy to me. I asked her how she was feeling about the other cats – she said she still wasn’t ready to be buddies with any of them, but she felt like this was her house too now.
Liria reported that the biting was better – now Mittens didn’t bite hard, only gently. We talked about the biting again and Mittens admitted that Liria was really good about listening to her. I suggested that since Liria was listening, that Mittens didn’t need to bite any more. I told her that if she wanted a break from petting, she could just get up and move away – then come back when she wanted more.
Mittens said she was grateful to Liria for taking her in – she finally had a loving person and felt like she belonged somewhere. She said in Liria’s house, the house really belongs to the cats – and the people live there too. Liria laughed when she heard that and said, “So true!”
“I have to tell you – our chats with Mittens are amazing and her behavior afterwards is amazing!!! She totally has been listening when you chat with her and she puts the suggestions to work. It’s as though she took notes during the chat and is checking things off as she does something new.” – Liria B., FL
When I was first contacted by Annie, she was quite distraught. She told me her vet suggested she contact me because the vet couldn’t figure out what was wrong with Annie’s cat Lola. Annie told me that Lola – a lovely long haired black cat – had been attacking her own tail. The vet told Annie that Lola had an emotional problem and wanted to put Lola on Prozac. Annie was not convinced that Lola had emotional issues and asked me to talk to Lola.
When I asked Lola to tell me about her tail, I was really shocked. What she showed me was that she would be sitting quietly and suddenly would viscously attack a particular spot on her tail – biting it with her teeth. Then after a few seconds, would leave the spot alone and would act normal again. Annie reported that this was exactly what happened – over and over through out the day, to the point that a serious wound had developed at the spot.
However, I did not feel that this was an O.C.D.-type behavior or an emotional issue – my feeling was that there was a physical cause. I asked Lola how her tail felt when she would attack that particular spot – she showed me that it felt like an almost electric shock – the feeling of a suddenly pinched nerve. In an attempt to make it stop, Lola would attack and bite her tail at the spot where she felt the nerve pain.
Because I am a medical intuitive, I can “look” inside an animal’s body to see how they are feeling. This can be really helpful – as it was in Lola’s case. When I “looked” at Lola’s tail, what I saw was a misalignment of two vertebrae in her tail – and one of the two vertebra also had a crack in it. This made sense to me, based on what Lola showed me about the nerve pain. I suggested that Annie have the vet take an x-ray of Lola’s tail. Annie said she would follow up with the vet.
Soon there after, Lola had her x-ray. The results showed exactly what I had seen – two misaligned vertebrae and a crack in one of them. Unfortunately, the wound over the site of the vertebrae had become dangerously infected and part of Lola’s tail had to be amputated immediately to prevent the infection from spreading further.
We talked to Lola again after the amputation and we assured her that she was still very beautiful and would now be pain free. While Lola wasn’t happy about loosing part of her tail, she was VERY happy about not having the nerve pain any more. Annie reported that Lola had not attacked her tail once since the surgery either!
Not long after Lola’s surgery, Annie was preparing to move to Florida. We talked to Lola and Annie’s other cat, about the upcoming move. The move went smoothly and they all got settled in Florida.
I didn’t hear from Annie for several months, but when I did hear from her, she was really concerned – Lola had started attacking the stub end of her tail. When I asked Lola why she was attacking her tail again, she showed me clearly that the problem was nerve related . . . she was having classic phantom limb syndrome pain – but of course in her case, it was phantom tail pain!
I suggested that Annie contact her local vet to get some pain medication for Lola. I felt that if she could get pain relief and gradually decrease the dose of the pain medication, that the nerve irritation would subside and Lola would be able to leave her tail alone.
Annie was able to get the pain medication from the vet and after a month or so of gradually decreasing the dosage, Lola was again pain free and was leaving her tail alone!
Several years have passed and Lola remains pain free – and her tail, although a bit shorter than it once was, it is still beautiful and – best of all – has been safe from attack!
“Poor Lola would have been on Prozac for no reason at all, but Sky found out what was really wrong with Lola’s tail and we were able to resolve it. I was blown away by the accuracy of Sky’s reading and am so grateful I listened to her suggestions. Thanks again, Sky, I can’t thank you enough!” – Annie E., FL
Imagine . . . being tortured in your first year of life – having cigarette burns all over your body, being terrified about what would happen to you next, even though you’ve done nothing wrong and finally . . . having your legs wired together and being thrown from a car. Well, that’s what happened to Smiley, an adorable terrier cross dog, in the first year of his life.
But then a miracle happened – a woman who rescues dogs found Smiley injured at the side of the road. In addition to everything else, he had a large gash in his shoulder from the damage done when he was flung from the car.
The woman immediately took Smiley to a vet, but he wanted to amputate the badly gashed leg – she refused and after intensive care, not only did Smiley survive, but he now has full use of all four legs.
Smiley’s rescuer invited a friend, Marie, over to see Smiley – it was love at first sight!
Marie took Smiley home as soon as she could. That was four years ago and Smiley hasn’t looked back since!
I asked Smiley if he liked living with Marie and her husband. Smiley made it clear to me that his life, before he was saved, was a life of terror. In contrast, he felt his new life with Marie was more wonderful than he could ever have imagined. He said Marie was his angel – he adores her! He said he loved Marie’s husband too – he loved to play with him and that they were buddies.
Marie wanted to know why Smiley got so nervous when he heard loud noises. Smiley began to show me scenes from his life, before he was found on the road. He showed me a man screaming at him and chasing him, throwing things at him, holding him down and burning him with cigarettes – the person felt psychotic or drugged to me.
It was clear that there was more that Smiley could have showed us, but both Marie and I felt that that was enough.
I didn’t want Smiley to dwell on the past, so I thanked him for telling us and we moved on.
Marie’s other family dog, Izzie, had crossed to Spirit a few months before this reading and Marie wanted to be sure that Smiley was OK being at home alone, while she was working. Smiley said he waited at the front door of their house for a few minutes after Marie left, then relaxed for the day – but he was always waiting at the door when it was time for Marie to come home! Smiley said he missed Izzie, but that she visited the house now that she was in Spirit – he showed me Izzie laying on the floor at Marie’s husband’s feet – the image had a beautiful, loving feeling. Marie asked if Smiley wanted them to get another dog so he wouldn’t be alone – he said he liked having Marie and her husband all to himself and didn’t really want to share. Marie laughed and said, “OK – no new dog!”
Another issue Marie asked about was that Smiley was terrified of being in the family car – he trembled and almost always threw up when he was in the car. I asked Smiley to tell me about this – he said it was because of what had happened before he came to Marie. It had nothing to do with Marie or her husband – it was a PTSD-type reaction.
I asked Smiley if anything bad had happened in the family car since he’d been with Marie – he admitted nothing had. I assured Smiley that Marie and her husband would never knowingly put him in danger, that he was safe with them in their car. I asked if there was anything they could do to help him feel safer – he showed me that he preferred riding in the front seat, so Marie could hold him or touch him. Marie said they usually put him in the back seat, but had recently been putting him in the front seat – so they would continue to do that and remind Smiley that he was safe with them.
Marie then told me they were planning to drive about thirty minutes to Colorado Springs the next day and wanted to take Smiley on the trip with them. I was concerned that it might be too soon for such a big step, but asked Smiley and he said he wanted to go! His energy regarding being in the car was much more positive – but he said they should have a towel in the car, just in case he threw up. Marie said they definitely would have a towel – and she said that ” Smiley stood up and started wagging his tail when you asked him if he wanted to go with us!”.
At the end of the session Marie told me, “You don’t always know what’s going on in their little heads – well, YOU do, but I don’t – and it really helps to know! “.
P.S.: Marie emailed me after their car trip the next day with Smiley and had this to report:
“When we went down to Colorado Springs, we were there just about the rest of the day. Smiley did great! He did not shake like he usually would. I think he rather enjoyed himself! Thank you so much again.” — Marie L., CO.
Magnum’s Little Lady Bear (Maggie), was a beautiful chocolate labrador retriever, who came to live with her person, Nina, in September of 1999. Maggie was a hard headed puppy, but she loved to hunt! She placed 2nd in the National Field Trials when she was only 9 months old.
In the summer of 2001 Maggie started having issues with thunderstorms. She would claw, chew, or bite her way out of a fully enclosed chain link dog run. She would try to run away from the storms, but they just kept chasing her. She had to have root canals in both canine teeth by the time she was five because she chewed through her chain link kennel many times.
Nina moved into a house with a basement, which protected Maggie from the noise of the thunder. For about 6 years she had a few calm summers. Then Nina moved to a house with no basement. Nina would leave Maggie in the house, but she tore the house apart a few times during storms.
In 2009 Nina moved again. She tried leaving Maggie in the bathroom in the summer so that she wouldn’t panic and run away. She also tried leaving Maggie with the other 2 dogs in the basement during thunderstorm season. But Maggie was having none of it. She went through 3 doors, 2 privacy fences, and almost a window. Nina bailed Maggie out of doggy jail (Animal Control) more times than she could count.
Maggie’s daughter Kodi, who would not leave her mother’s side no matter where her mother took her, lived with Nina too. The two of them ran off one day during a thunderstorm — when Nina was away for the day and wasn’t expecting storms — and they were missing for 2 days. Nina worried herself sick.
Nina could never enjoy summer because of Maggie’s fear and the unpredictability of thunderstorms in CO. In March of 2012 Nina was at her wits end with Maggie. People told her she should put Maggie down because it was getting so bad, but Nina couldn’t do it — Maggie was an awesome dog.
Nina found me through the Denver Metaphysical Fair and we talked to Maggie. Maggie told Nina exactly how she was feeling, and that nothing I did was going to help her to not be afraid of thunderstorms. Maggie told me that she would go through ANYTHING to escape the thunder, she was so afraid of it. I told Nina that I’d never felt the level of terror that thunderstorms created in Maggie in any other dog — it was completely overwhelming for Maggie . . . all Maggie could think of was that she had to get away from the thunder and it didn’t matter what she had to do to try to escape it.
I gave Nina some helpful hints that I thought would work to help Maggie. Nina realized she had to block every door very well, and take the dog door out before she went to work in the morning — basically leaving 4 dogs in her house for 12 hours each day. But…knowing how Maggie felt, Nina thought that would work. With some symphonic radio music and the doors being blocked… at least she knew Maggie wouldn’t escape. I also suggested Nina try the Thundershirt for Maggie — but Nina said she’d already tried it and it didn’t work for Maggie.
Nina didn’t ask me to talk to Maggie again until March 2013.. Maggie seemed to be getting worse physically. She had fallen off of Nina’s bed the previous summer and had some disc issues in her back. Maggie told me that her leg was getting worse, and that Maggie was afraid Nina would be mad at her if she crossed over and left her. Nina assured her she would not be mad — that Nina didn’t want her to suffer and that she could cross to Spirit when she was ready. I told Nina that Maggie said she would not be able to cross on her own and that Nina would have to help her cross over. I felt that Maggie’s Spirit was very strong, but that her body was failing — that her leg would give out — “not work” — but that Maggie would tell Nina when she was ready to cross to Spirit. It felt to me that Maggie would be needing to cross to Spirit in the next couple of weeks.
Nina worried, cried, and worried some more… But Maggie did exactly what she told me she would do. Maggie’s back leg would not work, and she gave Nina the “Sign” that she was ready to cross to Spirit. Nina made the decision on April 10th to have Maggie euthanized on April 11th.
April 10th was a very bad day for Nina, because she did not want to make the decision to put Maggie down. But on the 11th when Nina woke up, Maggie greeted her with a wagging tail, ate all of the other dog’s food, and calmly got in the car. Maggie’s daughter, Kodi, got in the car with Maggie. Nina tried to get her out, but Kodi was having none of it. She was going with her Mom and that was that.
They drove to the vet’s office. Maggie walked in, laid down, and looked at Nina — Nina felt Maggie was saying, “Hey Mom…I’m going to go be with my buddy Hannah, and it’s okay.” Three years ago Nina had to put down one of her other dogs (Hannah) — it was the hardest thing she’d ever done.
Maggie’s crossing was very peaceful and easy.
“If it weren’t for Sky I don’t know that I could have gone through with it. With Sky’s help Maggie was able to tell me what was going on, and what she would do to let me know when she was ready.
I know that I’ll see Maggie again someday, and maybe I’ll feel her Spirit by my side before that day.
I’m just so thankful to Sky for helping ease my pain and Maggie’s also.
Thank you from the bottom of my heart, Sky. I’m sure I’ll be talking to my other dogs with you soon.” — Nina S., CO
Rover was a beautiful white cat with the pointiest ears I’ve ever seen! His person was a kind woman named Kathy. Rover didn’t start out as her cat, though — he originally lived with Kathy’s neighbors. But Rover LOVED bacon and was happy to visit Kathy to get his share when she cooked it. Kathy loved Rover from the start.
When the neighbors had to move, Kathy volunteered to taker Rover in. It took Rover a couple of weeks to settle in his new home, but as Kathy says, “It was the beginning of a bond that I’ll never forget!”
I first spoke to Rover in January of 2012. He had been diagnosed and treated for mast cell tumors the year before, but appeared to be doing well with treatment. Rover told me that he wasn’t yet ready to cross to Spirit, but he wouldn’t be afraid when the time came.
I talked to Rover again a year later. Rover said he was really sick and wouldn’t be able to hang on much longer. Rover said he didn’t want to get any sicker than he was — if he got sicker, he wanted to cross to Spirit.
Rover agreed to let Kathy know when he was ready to cross over. Kathy agreed to hold Rover and send love to him while his Spirit left his body. As we talked, both Kathy and I shed tears knowing that Rover wouldn’t be with us much longer.
Sadly Rover had a brutal end. Kathy’s vet recommended another vet, who would come to Kathy’s house to euthanize Rover. But the vet, without telling Kathy what she was going to do, grabbed Rover by the scruff of the neck and plunged the euthanising needle into his back. Shocked, Rover screeched and struggled until the medicine took effect and his Spirit was released. Kathy was devastated that her beloved Rover was treated in this way. Sadly she said it was the darkest day of her life.
We talked to Rover, now in Spirit, a couple of weeks later. Rover assured Kathy that what had happened was not her fault. He said that he had felt her love, despite what had happened to him and that her love had helped him cross to Spirit. He said that she needed to let the vet know about how upset she was with the way Rover was treated . . . Rover told us that this was not the first time the vet had done this and that the vet needed to understand what she had done, so she could learn the lesson to not do it again.
Rover said he felt well and healthy again in Spirit. I could see Rover clearly — he looked more beautiful than ever on earth, with a white glow around him that felt like Angelic energy.
Kathy asked Rover if he could give her a sign that he was OK. He showed me a dream catcher with a white, a black and a yellow feather on one side. Kathy said that she had a dream catcher, but that it only had a white and a black feather on it. Rover said he would send her a yellow feather and that she should attach it to the dream catcher in memory of him.
Kathy looked and looked but the feather was no where to be found. Then two weeks later, on Easter Sunday, Kathy came home from church thinking about her beloved Rover and wondering when she’d find the yellow feather. Suddenly, she felt compelled to go outside and check the yard. As she left the house, there, right in front of her, was a beautiful pale yellow feather! There were no other feathers of any kind in her yard. And there was no doubt in Kathy’s mind or heart that this was Rover’s feather!
“This feather represents a wondrous act of love and the bond between me and Rover won’t be broken by death.
I truly believe that this was the connection with Rover that Sky told me to look for!” — Kathy H., CA.