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Are you an animal empath? Many people feel a unique, unspoken connection with animals, understanding their emotions and needs without words.

If cats and dogs seem naturally drawn to you, seeking your comfort, or if you’re deeply moved by animal suffering, feeling their pain as your own, you might be an animal empath.

In this article, I’ll explore the various traits of an animal empath and how you can develop empathy for animals. But first, let’s understand what animal empaths are and how they differ from most empaths.

What is an Animal Empath?

An animal empath (or fauna empath), has the profound ability to tune into animals’ emotional and, sometimes, physical states. Much like a radio catching a specific frequency, these individuals can understand and feel what animals experience without relying on spoken language. Their empathy for animals extends beyond mere compassion. It involves a deep, intuitive connection that allows them to connect deeply with animals.

Most empaths love animals, but animal empaths have a unique, almost magical bond with them. They can easily read the body language of animals such as their postures and tail movements, which helps them understand their needs and feelings. They also have an innate ability to sense when an animal is in danger or distress.

7 Signs of an Animal Empath

If you resonate with the concept of being an animal empath, here are seven signs that might confirm your unique connection with the animal kingdom:

1. Intuitive Communication

You understand animals’ needs and emotions without them having to make a sound. It is as though you speak a silent language that bridges the gap between species.

For example, you know when your pet is hungry or needs to go outside without them barking, meowing, or making any other sound.

2. Animal Magnetism

Animals are naturally drawn to you and feel comfortable in your presence. Stray animals may approach you on the street, and wild animals might come closer than they usually would. This could be because they sense your empathetic nature.

3. Heightened Sensitivity to Animals in Distress

Whether it is a scene in a movie or an animal by the roadside, your heart aches for animals that are suffering, and you are often moved to take action to help them.

You feel the animals’ pain as your own and you may cry when you see them hurting or suffering.

4. You Prefer Animals to People

While you might enjoy human company, there is a simplicity and purity in your relationships with animals that you find more comforting and straightforward.

Unlike humans who can be deceptive and dishonest, you find animals authentic and easy to get along with. It is like you share a deeper, unspoken connection with them.

5. You Can Calm Animals Down

Your presence seems to have a soothing effect on animals. Pets that are usually anxious or aggressive tend to become more tranquil around you. Animals can sense that you have a calming and loving energy toward them, and they respond well to it.

6. You Are a Vegan or Vegetarian

Many animal empaths view animals as friends or family members, leading them to adopt vegan or vegetarian lifestyles. Unable to bear the thought of harming or consuming animals, they make compassionate dietary choices.

Their empathy isn’t limited to pets. It encompasses a deep respect for all living beings, from wild animals to insects.

7. You Have a Strong Urge to Protect Animals

Feeling a profound responsibility towards animals, you may often find yourself acting as their protector. This can manifest in various forms, from participating in animal rights protests to rescuing animals in need.

You have an innate drive to ensure the safety and well-being of animals. So some of you may advocate for endangered species, oppose animal testing, or foster homeless pets.

Developing Empathy for Animals and Communicating With Them

I am an emotional and intuitive empath. While I don’t specifically identify as an animal empath, sometimes I feel especially drawn to a certain animal. For example, recently, I locked eyes with a Corgi and felt a deep, loving connection with the dog.

So even if you don’t see yourself as an animal empath, here are a few ways to develop animal empathy and communicate effectively with them.

1. Spend time with animals

You can’t develop empathy for animals if you don’t spend time with them. Seek out opportunities to be around animals, whether it is volunteering at a local animal sanctuary or spending time with a friend’s pet.

Engaging directly with animals in need can significantly enhance your empathy. You get firsthand experience in caring for animals when volunteering at local shelters or wildlife rescues. This active participation not only benefits the animals but also enriches your own emotional and empathetic growth.

2. Observe their behavior

Observe animals closely in both domestic and natural settings. By watching how animals interact with their environment and each other, you begin to understand their communication methods, emotional states, and needs.

Animals communicate in subtle ways. For example, a change in posture, eye movement, or even the direction they point their ears can convey their feelings and intentions. By practicing active listening and observation, you allow yourself to understand and connect with animals on a more profound level.

3. Cultivate empathy through mindfulness

Mindfulness and meditation can significantly enhance your empathic abilities towards animals. Animals live in the present moment, and by practicing mindfulness, you can better understand their behaviors and emotions in real time. The more attuned you become to the present moment, the easier it is to pick up on subtle cues from animals.

Mindfulness not only deepens our understanding of animals but also fosters patience by teaching us to slow down and be more present in their world.

4. Educate yourself about animals

Take the time to learn about different animal species, their behaviors, and their needs. This helps you to make informed decisions when it comes to caring for them and clear up any misconceptions you may have.

For instance, one might assume a dog’s bark signifies aggression, yet it can also express their excitement upon seeing you. By educating yourself on animal behavior, you can better understand their actions and respond appropriately.

5. Engage in Play

Play is a type of interaction that transcends the boundaries of language. When you engage in play with an animal, you create a space for connection and mutual understanding without words. Playing also helps to build trust and strengthen your bond with animals. So let loose, have fun, and let yourself be fully present in the moment while playing with animals.

Final Thoughts

Empaths frequently possess a spectrum of empathic skills, meaning you might not align perfectly with just one category. It is common to resonate with one or multiple empath types.

To deepen your understanding of the nuances between the different types of empaths, explore my list of blog posts on empaths.