Pet Loss Grief Support Animals in our Hearts  Animal Communication Teresa Wagner
  • The best way to learn the language of another species is as a social partner.

    ~Conrad Lorenz

Workshops & Events

Essential Counseling Skills
for Animal Communicators, Healing Practitioners
& Those Who Provide Grief Support

A client-centered, empathy-based, ethically founded approach to counseling

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6 two hour sessions, 12 hours total


March 11, 18, 25, April 8, 15, 22




If you are interested in pre-registration, please This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Full registration will open in December 2016.


Teresa Wagner, M.S. and Ruah Bull, Ph.D


This workshop is appropriate for both professionals and students of animal communication, grief support and any healing arts fields. The ideas, issues and skills covered in the workshops are applicable to counseling with both humans and animals.

The class is a requirement in the Animal Loss and Grief Support Professional Program of Study for those seeking certification.



I've always known in my heart that the necessary roots of all healing are compassion and love. What I've learned, however, is that for us as healing practitioners to merely feel compassion and love is not enough. Communicating these qualities to our clients effectively is not automatic, however deeply we feel them in our hearts. If we intend to offer a true healing presence for others, we need to use specific skills and ethics and with conscious intention.

The workshop is a reflection of my own efforts to integrate the skills of counseling and therapy—the roots of my education and professional work since 1976—into my private practice of grief support and animal communication.

The workshop is about the conscious overlay of basic yet powerful and essential counseling skills into our work as in the healing arts and in grief support. When strategically applied, these skills allow us to bring the best of what our souls have to offer to serve others. It's not about becoming a therapist. It's about borrowing some time tested, skills from the field of counseling psychology which research has shown to have an extremely positive impact on the growth of clients and applying them to our healing arts and grief support work.

Receiving the energy of empathy allows a person or animal who is in pain or in struggle to feel acknowledged, understood and capable of a greater openness to healing. Offered without skillfully expressed empathy, the best expertise and healing techniques in the world can be perceived as cold, uncaring, ego based, or even useless. Next to love, empathy is the most powerful force in the universe to facilitate healing. This workshop provides an opportunity to learn very specific empathic skills to bring the power of our love, compassion and expertise alive to serve the clients we care about so much.

For more information on this client-centered, empathy based approach, read Teresa's article, A Client-Centered. Empathy Based Approach to Animal Communication and Healing

In this intensive and intimate workshop, we tell our stories of how we came to be in the roles we are in as grief support practitioners, healers, animal communicators or other helping roles, what has worked for us and what has not, where we feel strong and where we have doubts, and how we would like to integrate essential counseling skills into our practices. For those in the Animal Loss and Grief Support Certification Program and have taken most of the classes in the program, some of the content of this class will serve as an important reinforcement of key concepts and skills, along with a great deal of new information and a much deeper plunge into what effective and ethical counseling requires.

During informational presentations, discussions and practice sessions participants have an opportunity to:

  • Our stories: How we got here and why we do what we do
  • Understanging and defining healing and healing presence
  • The research: Core facilitative characteristics of helpers
  • Learn how to frame consultations to be Client-Centered: what that means, what it looks like, how it's structured, what is involved; how this approach is different from other consultation styles; research indicating the positive impact of the client-centered approach on clients
  • The power and purpose of empathic inquiry and empathic response
  • Self-Awareness: How personality type impacts helper effectiveness
  • Self-Disclosure in the helping relationship: Purpose and limits
  • The helper's inner experience: The parts of this work that are hard—facing and dealing with them
  • Understand soul empathy and its power to heal
  • Healthy boundaries: physical, emotional and psychic
  • Protect yourself from depletion and unnecessary absorption of others' pain
  • Increase your comfort level in being present with others' pain
  • Understanding the healer’s role in trauma, abuse and healing post trauma stress
  • Explore effective and ineffective references to spiritual beliefs when helping others
  • Our stories: What we want to continue and why and how we may want to shift and grow


Required texts for this class:

The Helper's Journey, Working with People Facing Grief, Loss and Life-Threatening illness
by Dale G. Larson,  Ph.D.  Champaign, ILL: Research Press, 1993

The Heart of Being Helpful, Empathy and the Creation of a Healing Presenceby Peter R. Breggin, M.D.   New York: Springer Publishing 1997


Guest speaker Dr. Ruah Bull, who has been counseling clients and involved in teaching counseling for over 35 years, with much of it in the healing arts and in a spritual context. She will be sharing aspects of her own career development—where she learned from successes and how she learned from mistakes. She will also discuss and hold a question and answer period to cover issues such as: career satisfaction and factors we might consider as we may consider changing jobs, shifting roles, or adding new skill sets or competencies or deciding to no longer practice in a certain area; the importance of mentoring; what she has found to be the most important, effective, must-use counseling skills that have transcended specific roles and contexts of working with clients.


Teresa Wagner has an undergraduate degree in psychology and a masters degree in counseling from Villanova University, and has completed post graduate work at Columbia University and the University of Nottingham, England where she studied with Carl Rogers, the creator of Client Centered Therapy. She has also completed the Clinical Training Program in Post Traumatic Stress Disorder at the National Center for PTSD, Dept. of Veterans Affairs, and has studied at the Grief Recovery Institute. Her healing arts education includes animal communication with Jeri Ryan, flower essence training with the founders of FES, Desert Alchemy and Perelandra, energy healing training in Reiki, and Therapeutic Touch and psychic studies with Evelyn Isadore. She has used the counseling skills taught in her workshop in her early career of counseling delinquent adolescents, during her fifteen year career in corporate organization development, in her pet loss counseling work since 1986, and in her animal communication and flower essence practice since 1991. Read more about Teresa.








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