Name: Suzanne O'Brien
Practice Location: Dallas, Texas
What certification did you earn through Angel's Animals? CMFT, REIKI, Craniosacral, ANMR and Kinesiology Taping
When did you decide that you wanted to work with animals? I have always been inspired by interspecies communication but my old life was as an Implementation Project Manager in telecommunications. Within a week of being laid off my 115lb European Doberman, who was so healthy and powerful, suddenly couldn’t walk without stumbling and falling down. He lost his bark, his motivation, shook and whined, unable to get up into his favourite chair unassisted. The E Vet suggested a wait and see approach and if not better in a few days, MRI, surgery or Put to sleep over life quality. During my corporate time I was also very holistic in my wellness approach and I believed acupuncture was the route to take for my boy. I have always loved animals and had them in my life as part of the family since childhood. Rhett was my son. It was during an acupuncture session that the veterinarian, Dr. Lisa Molidor, advised Rhett needed weekly massage therapy which would allow for the acupuncture work to be more powerfully received too. A light went off. After gaining skills and being able to not only help him heal further but keep him balanced, while other pets were being put down because folks couldn’t afford an MRI and surgery and realizing in so many cases all of that is completely unnecessary, I knew I had to help other pet parents. I watched a miracle of healing that has to be shared.
What animal influenced you the most growing up? Cashes Clay Muhamad Alley Cat ; my black cat soul mate. I picked him out when allowed to have a kitten, he fell asleep in my lap. We went everywhere together, building forts, running around in the yard. We shared ice-cream cones, sandwiches and cashews. He waited for me at the window to get off the school bus. He walked on and off leash in a heel, would sit on command, came when I blew a whistle or called, slept either curled up in my hair or like a human with his head on a pillow right next to me. And, of course, he stood up on his hind legs and boxed!
What animals do you currently own? We have a Doberman puppy, Artemis Lilith, and 4 groovy kittehs, two orange and two gray tabbies all about 3-4 years old. Rhett regained full power and as I like to say it, he went out with his boots on after skiing me across a neighbor’s yard last September to play with his friend Stella. He was playing and suddenly expired. I rendered CPR training from the class, brought him back 3 times but each time he crashed. It was his time to leave this plane but we all meet up again across that rainbow bridge. His job was done, he got me on this path of healing and helping the fur kids.
What makes your animal bodywork practice stand out? A few things: I take all the training of the various modalities and craft that into sessions tailored to the individual dog. I work with a few fearful dogs who need to learn to trust so many of those sessions begin with distance reiki until I can get my hands on them, work some acupoints and soothe their muscles and joints. I send some patients home with exercises to help them recover in-between appointments, and run a BioScan on each patient which helps identify what they are looking for emotionally to get them into emotional balance and physically as it runs a body system scan from the immune system to structure to digestion etc. Aromatherapy is included with each session and I love how the scan essentially confirms what I have already intuitively chosen as the oil blend for the session♥.
What message would you like to share with potential clients? Understanding that massage therapy is a vital part of ongoing maintenance just as getting regular vet checkups are and patience is their pup has a chronic condition, that will probably mean a few weekly or bi-weekly sessions to get them balanced before reverting to an ongoing maintenance plan for the life of that animal. This means patience to know that more than likely, several sessions will be needed and also, patience to wait, observe and allow space in-between these sessions for the body to respond and the healing to take shape ourwardly. Folks get very used to pharma and taking a pill and *boom* pain goes away or some other symptom to an underlying condition is masked. What I do is open a space for the animal to heal himself by clearing blocked energy and providing a quiet place to balance. Using my Doberman, Rhett, as an example, it took us 3 months of bi-weekly and weekly sessions to get his bones stacked properly. He had cervical and thoracic pain, tight spasming muscles, severe mobility issues, a lot of imbalance in the beginning. Each dog is going to heal differently and at a different speed. I am currently working with a paraplegic who is just beginning to regain his proprioception. In these cases, it takes loving kindness and patience on both sides. Healers also can get in a hurry to see results!
What message would you like to share with others who are thinking about pursuing a career in animal bodywork? I get energized working with the animals, they typically don’t have the mental emotional road blocks to healing that we humans many times do have. This makes it very exciting because we often times see great results after just a session or two that would take a human a very much longer time typically to see. They want to heal and feed off our energy, our intention. Prior to each session, I ask to be the conduit of patience, love and divine healing; to provide the healing that they wish for. I have been lucky so far, every creature I have worked on has shown progress and while this is great, I also realize that we each have plans and that the plan is not always to heal. So I meditate on this truth prior to my sessions and accept my role as a conduit of love, light and abundant healing on all levels, mind, body and spirit. This work is so rewarding. ♥
Every month Dr. Barbara acknowledges and showcases one of her certified practitioners! You could be next!