- Pets and Animals
Qi Gong for Animals
When we hear the words Qi Gong we usually think of certain exercises people do. Qi Gong is in fact more than this. The words "Qi Gong" literally mean the study of energy, a study which requires much time, effort and patience. The study of Qi (or Chi) started in China approximately 4000 years ago. The ancient study branched into several different modalities, among which are Qi Gong, Acupuncture, Acupressure and Herb Therapy.
Qi is extremely dynamic. It has multiple dimensions such as vibration, quality, magnitude and velocity. In addition, there are yin and yang components and the balance between them. There are twelve major meridians that are connected causing a continuous flow of Qi like a river.
The river of Qi in the body can become dirty or muddy. If the river is flowing strongly enough the mud is washed away and the river runs clear again. If the flow of the river is too weak, the mud must be removed and the strength of the river restored. Sometimes when the river is not flowing well the mud settles to the bottom. The water looks clear but it is only clear on the top. As you go deeper through the water you find the mud. Cleaning and restoring the river of Qi is the job of the Qi Gong therapist
According to Chinese Medicine, there is a physical body and a Qi body. Chinese Medicine considers the Qi body to be the foundation of health and longevity. A problem in the physical body is necessarily a problem in the Qi body. However, a problem in the Qi body may or may not be manifested in the physical body.
Animals, especially horses, are very sensitive to Qi. I was once called to help a Thoroughbred gelding on Long Island. This gelding had an infection in the withers which healed beautifully. However, he still didn't want a saddle or blanket on his back. He was also bucking when ridden. The vets could find no further physical problem. I assessed his Qi and found stagnation in the withers. I cleared this and balanced his Qi. The following week I called the owner to see how he was doing. She said he was his old self again.
This is an example of a problem in just the Qi body which exhibited itself as a behavioral and/or attitude problem. When the Qi is balanced and clear the mind is harmonious. When the Qi is disturbed and stagnant the mind loses harmony and is scattered.
My Qi Gong work with animals does not involve any direct hands-on contact. Feeling for sensations like vibration, flow, or fullness in the Qi body surrounding the animal I assess its condition. Using concentration and intent, I then work to improve the quality of the Qi. This results in the Qi being more balanced and moving more freely.
Sometimes a single treatment can result in a major breakthrough. Other times, a series of treatments are necessary to make steady progress, much like peeling an onion layer by layer. As one layer is taken away, another layer is revealed underneath that needs work. For some animals Qi Gong alone brings improvement. For others, I combine Qi Gong with hands-on muscle work.
Maintaining an abundant supply of Qi which is circulating properly is important for optimum health, longevity and harmony. Qi Gong can improve the quality of life for many of our animal companions.