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Emotional Freedom Technique for Animals and Their Humans

by | Holistic Living, Print Articles, Spring 2023

Creating a Harmonious Relationship through Tapping

Well known for its effectiveness with humans, Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) also provides an excellent hands-on method for treating behavioural, emotional, and health challenges in animals through simple point-tapping practices and focused intention. Joan Ranquet animal communicator explores how to apply the energetic bodywork method of EFT on animals such as dogs, cats, and horses. In the segment below, Joan explores how fear in the human body also impacts our animal companions.

“As an animal communicator, I have encountered many challenges that involved a person and their animal companion experiencing a traumatic event and the human then living in fear that the situation would repeat itself and communicating that to the animal. Whether it was the person in the saddle or the person holding a leash, I knew that the human nervous system would say all there was to say about the situation. This would be translated through the hand holding the leash, the hand holding horse reins, or the human’s seat in the saddle.

This is why I went full speed ahead into getting certified and learning all I could about EFT in the early 2000s. At that time, I was living in Denver, Colorado and encountered clients whose issues brought up common themes around fear, and I tried tapping to alleviate them.

The first situation goes like this. A middle-aged woman has recently packed up her last kid for college and is experiencing empty nest syndrome. She is looking forward to going back to her life before raising children. The big passion from her past is horses. Because she knows that horses that have experienced many homes can be complicated, she decides to purchase a young horse, reasoning that this young horse will have no challenges. At some point early on, the woman gets bucked off or trampled and breaks a collarbone or a limb. Now she’s afraid of the new love of her life, her horse.

The second situation involves someone stepping outside the home to walk their dog on the leash. The dog is sidelined by an aggressive unleashed dog and is pinned or injured in some horrific way.

I know that I helped clients like these, but those early years became my training ground for this work. The fear thing still rears its head with people. And for an animal lover, there’s nothing worse than feeling fearful of an animal.

My friend Ellie Laks, founder of The Gentle Barn, had a big scare with a horse and was unable to even lead horses after that. This was a challenge because she lives at The Gentle Barn and there are three locations each filled with horses. It was heartbreaking, because it meant she wasn’t as close as she had been with her beloved horse Whisper.

One day, I was at The Gentle Barn doing other healing work on a young cow called Ferdinand when Ellie asked me about tapping. It was then that she revealed her fear of horses to me, and I said, “Let’s tap!”

We tapped on the fear, the sadness, and the disappointment, and ran through many emotions, coming back to the fear. We ended on how much ease and confidence she had with horses. I never thought to ask her anything about it, but about a year later she said to me:

“Joan, I was leading a horse out of the stall at the Tennessee Gentle Barn location, and my husband Jay asked, ‘Hey, Ellie, when did you stop being afraid of horses?’ and it was as if I had never been afraid of horses, and then I remembered our tapping.”

Fear of Strangers

“Stranger danger,” as it is popularly known, falls somewhere between anxiety and straight-up fear or even abject terror. Barnaby was at abject terror level. His person, Claudia, is now one of the teachers at CWALU and an animal communicator/healer in her own right. When she began the CWALU program, I asked her to bring her dog, as she lived locally, and we needed another dog to do the healing work with.

The one problem was that there was a guy in the class. Usually, my classes are primarily women, but during this particular Spring Intensive class, there was a dude named Pete.

Now, there is nobody gentler than Pete. He exudes safety . . . to humans, that is; not to Barnaby, who was terrified of all men. Back then, I would cram about 35–45 people into a relatively small room, so there was really nowhere for Barnaby to retreat. He ended up hiding behind Claudia’s chair.

We tapped on Barnaby’s “stranger danger” fear and then tapped on his terror. Once that started to shift, we turned it around to such an extent that Barnaby is now Claudia’s “knight in shining armour,” her fearless protector.

By the Fall Intensive, Barnaby was way more chilled around people, men, and just in general. He might still bark, but he now runs up, touches the person, and runs off. Sometimes, he even relaxes in the same room as a strange guy. He is curious. Through the tapping, we went from panic to seeking behaviour.

Is he totally fine with strangers? No. But the terror is gone.

Fear of Sounds

Kim graduated from the CWALU program a few years back. During the energy healing portion of her curriculum, she used her own dog, Oski, as the subject not only for me to work on tapping with him in class but also for her homework partners to work with after class.

Oski was terrified of fireworks. Unfortunately for him, they lived near Disneyland in Southern California, and Disneyland has nightly fireworks. Every night, this 80-pound dog would pant, get very nervous, and try to climb into Kim’s lap. Kim doesn’t weigh much more than 80 pounds herself. (Okay, maybe a bit more, but she is tiny.) She does not have a lap that can fit an 80-pound dog. As she described it, “He was not in his body.”

Once Kim learned more about tapping, she started tapping on him about the fireworks, soothing Oski through the experience. Oski started coming to Kim when the fireworks started so that she could soothe him by tapping on him. He loved the tapping and is no longer afraid of fireworks.”

Joan Ranquet is an animal communicator, energy healer, TEDx speaker, author, and founder of Communication with All Life University, a certification program for animal communication and energy healing. She lives with her 3 horses, 3 dogs, and 4 cats in Santa Clarita, California. https://joanranquet.com/