What is a Power Animal Retrieval?

What is a Power Animal Retrieval? Learn more about what this age-old practice is and how you could benefit from it.

by Sarah Petruno, Shamana

In shamanic healing, there’s a term called, “Power Animal Retrieval.”

Not sure what that is or how it could help you? You aren’t alone.

This is a term referencing a practice that’s exclusive to those in shamanic circles. It’s used within the field of shamanism, taught to shamans by other shamans, but the meaning of what it is, is rarely shared with the general public, who could actually benefit from the practice.

So, what is a Power Animal Retrieval?

The term “Power Animal” refers to your Animal Spirit Helpers on the Other Side. These guys are also known as Animal Totems, Spirit Animals or Animal Guides.

We all have a team of Spirit Guides and Helpers on the Other Side that help us to navigate this life. We choose our team before our birth into this life, and we identify this group of individuals as those who could help us in specific ways at specific times in our lives, or throughout our lives.

We each have a set of 3-7 Guides working with us at any one time, and as we move through different stages in our lives, as we need different types of help, these Guides can change.

A Power Animal is a specific type of Animal Spirit Guide.

At times when we are feeling weak, needing courage, feeling powerless, and in need of a boost of bravery to make or move through really difficult life transitions, a Power Animal is your Animal Guide who can provide this support. A Power Animal is someone in Spirit who can give you the power and strength you need to move forward.

A Power Animal Retrieval is a healing act performed by a Shaman, typically in a shamanic journey (a meditative state for healing and guidance, read more about that here).

When a Shaman* performs a Power Animal Retrieval, they are connecting with your Power Animal and bringing them forth to connect them with you. They are asking the Animal Spirit who is going to provide you with the strength, courage, and support you need to step forward to help you now.

They connect you to your Power Animal.

In these sessions, a Shaman can tell you who your Power Animal is, a name if they give one, what specifically they are going to help you with, and most importantly, how you can work with them and call upon them to help you in your day to day life. The amount of detail that is given depends on how the Shaman works and the Spirit who is choosing to speak.

When a Shaman retrieves your Power Animal from the Spirit World, they are calling upon someone to assist you with having the courage, strength and skills that you need, to move forward.

What is a Power Animal Retrieval? Learn more about what this age-old practice is and how you could benefit from it.

How do you know if you need the help of your Power Animal?

Here are a few examples in which a Power Animal Retrieval could be beneficial:

  • If you are facing difficult challenges that seem insurmountable

  • If you are having trouble moving past painful relationships or traumatic experiences

  • In situations of past or present domestic or sexual abuse

  • If you are experiencing feelings of chronic fatigue and weakness

  • In relieving physical illness related to immune deficiencies or weaknesses

A Power Animal is your Animal Spirit Guide who can specifically help you gain strength and reclaim personal power. You can think of the retrieval as the meet and greet, and the Shaman is the facilitator that brings both parties to the table - you and your Power Animal. From there, resources of strength and courage can be handed to you and a relationship can be built between you and your Power Animal to help you overcome the challenges you are currently facing.

With love,


*Not sure what a shaman does? Check out this article for an explanation.

psst ~ want to learn more about basic shamanic practices? check out the ebook shamanic basics - click here to learn more and get your copy!

LAST UPDATED: March 10, 2015

Disclaimer: By law, we are required to state that we are not a medical doctors, the information presented here is for education purposes only, and our advice is not meant to be replaced for medical diagnosis and/or treatment by your doctor. This website is run by a shaman and an herbalist. The statements made on this blog and website represent our view of the world given our unique set of life experiences. These are truths as we see and understand the world at the time the words were written. Statements here have not been evaluated by the FDA and are meant for educational purposes only. We cannot guarantee successful outcomes. Your health is your responsibility. Please view our full terms & conditions and site disclaimers, located in the webpage footer.

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