Hypnotherapy for Your Pet
Hypnotherapy and hypnosis for animals is a curious phenomenon likely to be consigned to the annals of folklore or quackery, unless one delves deeper.
It seems that the basic mechanism underpinning the human brain also underpins the animal brain. In fact, arguably, animals broadly share the unconscious part of the human brain which a hypnotist appeals to whilst the conscious logical outer cortex is only a feature of the human brain.
Forms of animal hypnotism, though not undertaken by a hypnotist, have been used to calm and control animal for centuries, particularly for agricultural purposes. This type of animal hypnosis, far from being the kind of illogical pre-scientific ritual you might imagine were actually effective means of persuading animals to stay in one place, to sleep, and so on. For example, chickens were trained by having small objects, such as wood shavings tied to their beak, thus inducing the kind of hypnotic stare characterised in films as the hypnotist dangles a watch in front of a hapless patient!
Of course, animal hypnosis had other applications and was used to entertain people in zoos and travelling circuses. It also had scientific value as evidenced by ‘Pavlov’s dog’.Pavlov was an early 20th Century Physician who stumbled upon hypnosis as field of enquiry when he discovered that you could induce a dog to salivate just by making hand gestures. If an edible treat is given to a dog, he discovered, they will salivate before even eating it, accompany that with a hand gesture and they will soon salivate upon seeing the hand gesture, even when there is no food present. The implication for the pet owner is that certain gestures can influence the subconscious animal mind and body in ways that can be invaluable when controlling animal behaviour.
Hypnosis and Your PetBefore getting the watch and chain out and dangling it in front of your dog or hamster, it is worth considering that many hypnotists believe that animals (and children, incidentally) experience what would, for an adult, pass as a hypnotic trance at many points in a day. This makes animals very impressionable to hypnosis and hypnotherapy, as can be seen if you try and train your pet or play games with it. You will find, for instance, that your animal is very susceptible to key words (such as ‘Dinner’ or ‘Garden’ or ‘Walkies’, if it is a dog). You may also have noticed that you pet is most susceptible to suggestion and influence when distracted or sleepy, or when very relaxed.
Hypnosis can be used to gently coerce your pet, but should never be used just for your own entertainment. With some ingenuity and a basic grasp on hypnotism it should not be difficult to get your pet exhibiting bizarre and comical behavioural traits, but wouldn’t it be better using Pavlov’s discoveries to get your dog to cross the road safely, than to make it do back-flips at the site of a doggy treat?
Hypnotherapy For Your PetThough it is not possible to speak of medical hypnosis for your pet as such, the benefits of hypnosis and similar treatments on animals, including pets, can be seen by owners and farmers alike. Hypnotherapist Robert McGowan argues that alternative treatments such as hypnosis can be used effectively to treat pets.
Being as medical hypnosis had only been recently recognised by the medical community as effective for humans it may be some time before hypnosis is recommended by veterinary surgeons for pets. However, methods not dissimilar to hypnosis are routinely used to calm animals (such as when a trout farmer tickles a trout to send it to sleep)
Of course, one has to beckon caution when seeking treatment for your animal, and it is worth consulting a veterinary surgeon before approaching an alternative healer, the latter being, in any case, relatively hard to come by. If you do seek the help of an alternative animal healer, ask yourself first if it is the animal that you are seeking help for or yourself (that is to say, are you choosing as a result of you own bias)? Of course, there is no risk in choosing hypnotherapy for your pet, but do remember that in the case of severe illness it is worth doing this in tandem with the application of more traditional methods.