Thinking of You

Connect to an Animal Spirit

by Dana da Ponte ~

When I sat down to receive this week’s Spirit message, I heard: “Connect with the spirit of an animal.”

As a child, I was emotionally connected to animals but not necessarily spiritually connected to them. I lived on a farm and it broke my heart to watch them die or suffer. I could feel the pain animals endure. I could love them and be loved by them but I wasn’t really open to connecting to them in a spiritual way.

Yes, there are a couple significant moments sprinkled in my past where I felt the magic of animals but mostly, the closest I felt to them spiritually was in my twenties when I used my animal themed oracle cards and this, for me, is a pretty shallow connection.

A couple years ago, I was visited by the spirit of an animal in such a way that my brain could not deny the fact that, yes, indeed, animals do have spirits and yes, these spirits want to help.

The visit happened one day as I was working on my computer. I had just finished giving a client an online Intuitive Therapy session. I was about to turn my camera off when I caught a glimpse of my eyes. They spooked me because I couldn’t see my eyes. Instead, I saw big cat eyes. I looked deeper into the eyes and everything else in my field of vision started to look as if it was being covered by a heavy fog. I could no longer see the room in my peripheral vision. I was locked onto those fierce cat eyes when all of a sudden my face disappeared and I saw the face of a spotted jaguar.

The jaguar’s spirit face disappeared as quickly as it had appeared and I was left feeling like one does when they realize they just experienced magic… grateful but a little unsettled.

Thinking of You by Shelby Willis
Thinking of You ©

I knew there was a message I was supposed to receive with the visit but I didn’t know what it was.

I live in southern Alberta, Canada. I have obviously never had a personal experience with a jaguar, nor do I have any real knowledge about the animal. In order to understand the message Jaguar Spirit wanted to share with me, I did some research. I learned the Mayan word balam means both jaguar and priest or sorcerer. I also learned that jaguars are seen as the protector of the forests but because of man’s deforestation practices, they obviously cannot protect them anymore.

I realized my message from Jaguar was, we must become like the Jaguar Spirit and fiercely protect the forests and waters.

Receiving this message inspired me to learn about the forest I live in and the challenges the trees face here. It also inspired me to learn about watershed maps and how to protect the water that flows from the mountains to my home. The message invited me to develop a deeper relationship with the nature that surrounds me and for this I will be forever grateful.

Part of what allowed the visit from Jaguar Spirit to happen is my commitment to clear past conditioning and subconscious beliefs I held around nature and humanity’s relationship to it.

If you want to connect with the spirit of an animal this week, some of the beliefs and/or conditioning you may want to shift or work on include:

  • Humans are superior to animals.
  • Animals are here to serve humans.
  • Animals are without souls or spirits.
  • Humans are at the top of some evolution pyramid.
  • The natural world is disconnected from me.
  • The natural world is inferior to the spiritual world.

To strengthen your ability to connect with the spirit of an animal, beliefs you may want to adopt instead include:

  • Animals can communicate with humans.
  • Animals have spirits and/or souls.
  • Animal spirits are as important and precious as human spirits.
  • Animal spirits want to support, teach and guide me.
  • I have the ability to connect with animal spirits.
  • Learning more about their physical attributes and behaviors and acquiring knowledge about them helps me to understand the guidance, messages or support their spirits want to share with me.
  • Approaching nature with reverence, gratitude and respect helps me connect with the spiritual wisdom of animals.
  • An emotional and spiritual connection with nature is possible (and critical to our well-being as a species, in my opinion).

Spirit Art Exercise:

Think of an animal whose spirit you’d like to feel more connected to or whose spiritual qualities you could benefit from at this time in your life.

Art - May 17, 2021 - Jaguar - low res

Draw an outline of that animal in its natural habit on a piece of cardboard or cardstock paper. Keep the lines simple.

Follow the lines with your hot glue gun then let the glue dry.

Carefully place a piece of foil over the picture and gently push and smooth the foil around the lines you made with glue. This is delicate work as the foil will tear if you are too rough with it.

Wrap the remaining foil around the edges of the paper and tape them in place.

Draw designs and lines on the foil by pressing lightly with a pencil or a pointed object like a knitting needle.

To make your lines really pop, brush acrylic paint onto the image then take a cloth and wipe it away. The paint will sink into the lines you drew while the foil will shine where the paint rubs off easily.

When you are done, place your image somewhere you can admire it until you receive a message from the spirit of the animal you are hoping to establish a deeper connection to.

I placed my jaguar image on my altar. It rests there as a reminder that I still have a lot of work to do to become the nature protector I hope to be.



Dana da Ponte is a professional intuitive, artist and certified MAP Practitioner. She helps empaths and highly sensitive people manage anxiety, overwhelm and negative thinking so they can break free of self-sabotaging patterns and claim the intuitive and creative powers that come with their sensitivities. You can visit her online at and sign up to get her free moon pages delivered to your inbox every full and new moon or join her free community Art Journaling with the Moon for Intuitive Healing


Shelby Willis’ artwork is inspired by her love for nature and her background in Ecology. She has always been drawn to animals and through a combination of color, mark making and energetic brush strokes, she aims to capture and showcase their spiritual qualities. Contact her at, Instagram: @shelbzwillisart, Facebook: Shelby Willis Art or shelbywillisart@gmail