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Friday, September 30, 2011

The Healing Power of Purr Therapy

By Julia Williams

I have nothing against medical doctors. They’ve certainly played a role in my care since birth, and have even helped me a time or two. But there are times when I opt for a more unconventional mode of healing, one I’ve taken to calling “Purr Therapy” for lack of a better term. Sometimes, Purr Therapy is all I need to cure whatever ails me. Whether I suffer from a physical, mental or emotional malady, Purr Therapy can miraculously take me through the illness and into perfect health.

What is this strange healing power I call Purr Therapy? Well, it’s not some mumbo-jumbo snake-oil tactic, I assure you. Purr Therapy is simply believing in and allowing the natural healing power that my cats have. Though some might dismiss this notion as fallacy, the miraculous healing powers of pets have been well documented by doctors, veterinarians and animal lovers alike. And truly, just about everyone who has a close bond with their pet has experienced this natural healing ability firsthand. Purr Therapy – and its companion Wag Therapy – can be holistic complements to your wellbeing regime.

Purr Therapy allows my body’s own natural healing ability to shine, thereby creating health and wellness in every cell. Purr Therapy centers me, lifts my spirits and makes me feel glad to be alive. Who can feel sad or sick with a cat lying on their chest so close to their heart, purring like mad? Certainly not I. Who could allow pain to diminish their happiness when there is a pet nearby, so willing to give and receive love? Oh…not I, that is for sure. Purr Therapy has the miraculous ability to make everything seem all right, even when it isn’t. In fact, I think Purr Therapy can be a thousand – no, a million! – times more effective than any anti-depressant medication.

When I combine Purr Therapy with a long petting session, the healing power is magnified tremendously. Stroking the soft fur of a beloved pet is therapeutic for body and soul. It’s been proven to lower blood pressure and reduce stress, and can help us feel more connected to life and love. But cats and dogs are not just vacant recipients of our attention. These angels with fur are sentient beings who have an uncanny ability to know when we suffer and even, where it hurts. Further, they use their natural healing powers to try to make the pain go away. If they are unsuccessful at times, I think it’s only because our rational mind gets in the way. We disallow their healing because we think they can’t. And when we think they can’t, it’s like placing your hand over a spinning top – it stops cold.

I’m learning to allow Purr Therapy to work its magic on my body and my mind, because I truly believe it’s possible. No, I certainly won’t forsake my doctor or conventional medicine, because I know they have a place in my care. But I’ve come to see how important Purr Therapy (and Wag Therapy) can be for creating a healthy body, mind and soul. My cats are not “just pets” to me. They are loving, sentient beings whose very presence can turn a crappy day into one that seems sunny even when clouds cover the sky. I would not want to live in a world without the healing power of Purr Therapy. Thankfully, I don’t have to. 

Photo by Mike Lawson

Read more articles by Julia Williams

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