Animals and the Afterlife:
True Stories of Our Best Friends’ Journey Beyond Death
REVIEW by Patricia A. Leslie, MS, Metaphysics
Kim Sheridan, a trained Naturopath and health researcher, has spent six years researching and writing a remarkable book. I think it likely that this book will in some way permanently change the consciousness of every animal lover – whether believer, skeptic or agnostic. The writing style is lucid and accessible, and the contents are so compelling that I devoured it in record time.
The genesis of the book (recounted in the early chapters) was the author’s own journey from scientific-minded skeptic to believer, and from animal lover to animal rescuer. Along the way she experienced her share of “unexplainable” phenomena, and also made a very systematic examination of the growing field of intuitive (or telepathic) animal communication.
Central to the book are scores of first-person accounts of contacts with beloved animal companions from the “other side.” The informants’ demographics cut broadly across regional, cultural, educational and career lines. Ms. Sheridan adds her own commentaries, placing each anecdote in a more general context (ranging from humane issues to metaphysical wisdom). Her own profound connection to animals (particularly tame rats) provides a through-line of touching personal experiences and incisive observations as well.
Types of “other-side” contact can take many forms, and Ms. Sheridan devotes a chapter to each. Interestingly, much spiritual contact is sensory: still hearing a kitty’s purring or the click of doggy toenails, suddenly smelling the distinctive fragrance of the beloved’s fur, or feeling a small body jump onto the foot of the bed. Some people receive messages through mediums or animal communicators. Some have seen their loved one in vivid dreams, others in waking visions. There is even a chapter dealing with animal reincarnation.
While these are inescapably stories involving loss, tragedy and grief, I found them uplifting rather than depressing. Each is a moving testament to the kind of love which can bind together individuals of different species, even beyond death. Each account attains closure with spiritual comfort, consolation and hope. The chapter “Letting Go: Handling Grief” provides such wise counsel and compassionate insights, that it should be required reading for all veterinary personnel as well as clergy and psychologists.
I wholeheartedly recommend this book to anyone who is dealing with grief over the passing of a beloved animal companion, or who is facing such a loss. It will also be of great interest to anyone who is curious about the spiritual aspects of animals.