Pet Sounds

Animal psychic Sonya Fitzpatrick hears voices - the dog and cat kind.

Along with brushing off traditional animal medicine, most pet psychics also don't believe in higher-power lessons based in organized religion. Instead, many came to the field after some sort of personal spiritual experience, and apply similar concepts to animal communication. "The work that I do is not a religion for me, but I do call for all of the divine help that I can get," says Dallas pet psychic Larson. "I call for the archangels and the guardian angels to give me permission to talk with [animals]."

Unlike Dr. Crist's clients, none of Teller's clients have consulted with a pet psychic, though several have asked her opinion about animal communicators. Her thoughts on the matter can be best summarized when she says, "There are certainly better ways to spend the several hundred dollars to ensure the health and well-being of a pet...but I understand that sometimes people need to do something that makes them feel better, even if it's a crock."

Because it's impossible to prove if animals can indeed send their thoughts into a magnetically aided telepathic field — and a human being can actually get in there to decode the messages — pet psychics are often called out as wannabes, even by people who speak to animal communicators on a regular basis.

Fitzpatrick claims to have become so good at animal communication that she doesn't require a photograph of a pet during her $300-per-half-hour sessions.
Chris Curry
Fitzpatrick claims to have become so good at animal communication that she doesn't require a photograph of a pet during her $300-per-half-hour sessions.
In order to avoid life-threatening disease in her pets, the British-born former fashion model feeds her dogs and cats sweet potatoes, vegetables and English tea.
Chris Curry
In order to avoid life-threatening disease in her pets, the British-born former fashion model feeds her dogs and cats sweet potatoes, vegetables and English tea.

Helen Stroud has been a client and friend of Fitzpatrick's for 19 years. According to her, Fitzpatrick is "just psychic, period." However, other animal communicators that she's spoken with are not, period.

Two years ago, Stroud talked to Myra Logan, a Houston-based pet psychic who conducts all-day animal communication workshops for $180 a person. Logan, who quit her corporate job in 2002 to become a full-time, albeit financially strapped, pet psychic, is known in the community as the animal communicator to go to if money is tight. (She charges just $70 per half hour.)

Stroud apparently got what she paid for because she wasn't impressed with Logan's "horrible, fear-based bullshit" consultation. When Stroud reported the results to Fitzpatrick while visiting her home, Fitzpatrick became angry and said, "That's what gives us a bad name!"

Logan, during a phone interview, was rendered speechless by the allegation that she preys on people's insecurities during her pet psychic readings. "I don't know how to respond to that," says Logan after a long pause. "I can give you the numbers of hundreds of [former] skeptics that have referred other clients to me."

Even Fitzpatrick admits that there are limitations on what she can do. Unlike with dogs and cats, which boast a "single consciousness," she's unable to communicate with nonhumans that have "mass consciousness." This includes spiders as well as flies, which she kills every chance she gets. (In fact, during a closed-door pet psychic session witnessed by the Press in Fitzpatrick's bedroom, a lone fly wouldn't leave her alone. She tried over and over to kill the pest, but was unsuccessful.)

Fitzpatrick has also given up locating runaway animals through telepathy, a trend that many pet psychics have adopted because, according to Logan, the owners who don't find their lost pets are always disappointed. "This is not a science. You can't get an animal to do anything," says Logan.

To trained professionals like Dr. Teller, these are just some of the obvious shortcomings of pet psychiatry, a field she won't be shelving her day job for anytime soon.

"My only intrigue with seeing a pet psychic would be like going to a party and they have a palm reader because you're always a little bit curious as to what they're going to say," says Teller. "Other than that, I don't see it as much more than an interesting party trick."
_____________________

Fitzpatrick, in between sips of afternoon tea, composes some words on a yellow notepad for her forthcoming animal afterlife book. Across from the white couch where she sits is a four-legged table that holds her psychic grandmother's ashes.

"Oh, that's Wanda Sykes, darling," says Fitzpatrick, who takes a break from writing to point to another table that's lined with photos of Fitzpatrick posing with celebrity clients such as Sykes and Denise Richards. Aside from trips to Los Angeles and New York City for television interviews, Fitzpatrick rarely leaves this room or her bedroom. That's because she's found a way to conduct her profitable affairs — ranging from telephone pet psychic sessions to writing books by longhand that have been translated into Chinese and Japanese — without vacating her home.

Even if non-clients are hanging about her home, it's not unusual for Fitzpatrick — who perpetually dresses like she's going to a function, a habit that she picked up during her modeling days — to perform impromptu readings for free. For example, during one of the Press's visits, Fitzpatrick unexpectedly starting talking to this writer's dogs. "Which one has troubles with his ears? You see, I'm picking that up as I'm talking to you. I've got discomfort in my ears. He says he has ear trouble every so often. Let me [telepathically] tell your dad how to get rid of the allergies."

In all of the years she's been doing pet psychiatry, Fitzpatrick claims that only two people have asked for their money back. One person desperately needed the cash to pay some other bills, while the other became upset because Fitzpatrick didn't inform the owner that her pet was going to die (which it did) a few days after the session. In both cases, Fitzpatrick refunded the money.

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2 comments
Doggy Lama
Doggy Lama

Yes, I do become quite amused when some people are taken for a ride by Television Pastards. Basically, if people are willing to believe in television miracles, they deserve the consequences. Of course, I don't appreciate the elderly being a target of this recalcitrant behavior, but most others are fair game.

Psychics are no different. But, psychics for dogs? Come on.

I have been known to hand out business cards to pretentious psychological fucks at various mental health conferences to break the monotony of name tag examination. "Canine Hypnotherapy and Psychodrama" It is amusing to watch the contorted faces that follow.

If I were to open such a clinic, I could easily milk the patient owners. I could ask the owner to assist in obtaining an informed consent paw print. Then, I could ask them to leave the room. Confidentiality is very important. If the patient were to show no progress or regression, I could blame this on "resistance." I might do this. I could call myself a Specialist in Canine Psychotherapy.

Richard Doll
Richard Doll

Just proves again "There's a sucker born every minute", or "a fool and his (or her) money are soon parted". And to think she didn't even have to go to law school to swindle this amount of money!

 
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