Animal-Speak: Remembering Ted Andrews

“Hurry up! Look outside!” shouted my husband. There in our backyard stood a large buck. He was as tall as a pony, with bright white spots and tail. His antlers were magnificent. (The numerologist in me now wishes I had counted the points, but I was too surprised at what I was seeing to think of it.)

I quickly closed the blinds on our picture window — I was visualizing the news stories about deer jumping through storefront windows. I didn’t care about the chaos that would ensue in our house, as much as the harm to the deer. I realize now that I was having a typical human reaction to this deer, and there was never any danger of shattered glass and a wounded animal. This deer came to us at a very special time.

As I peeked from behind the blinds, he caught a glimpse of me – or so it felt. We stared at each other for a split second. He was as calm and cool as could be. I stood and watched as this magnificent being slowly turned and disappeared into the trees behind our house.

Many of you may be thinking, big deal – she saw a deer. Well it was a big deal, because my husband and I don’t live in a rural area. We’re in a neighborhood that has lots of birds, squirrels, dogs, cats and Rocky the raccoon – no deer.

Animal Spirituality tells us that when an animal comes to us under unusual circumstances, there is a message to be gained. I pulled out my Animal Speak book by Ted Andrews (Llewellyn Publications, 2005), who is one of the foremost experts in animal energy and wisdom. The book said, “deer take us into the wilderness for new adventures.” Ted mentioned that in the tales of King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table, Sir Gawain’s deer hunt took him to wondrous and exciting encounters.

The next day I heard the sad news that Ted Andrews had died. Ted grew up in Dayton, and I have always admired this fellow Buckeye and his work. He has taught us about the wisdom of animals, and has given of himself for animal welfare. I had the good fortune of hearing him speak, and he kindly and humbly autographed one of my books.

When it comes to Ted Andrews, perhaps the deer that came to us expressed it best – magnificent and graceful, with a knowing in his eyes. Ted also says that deer represent gentleness and innocence, and a visitation signals a “gentle luring to new adventure.” I’d say the deer was right.

Thank you, Ted Andrews, for all you have done in physical form, and for all you will be showing us in spirit.

Please honor Ted’s memory by sharing your unusual animal encounters, and what they meant to you.

66 comments

Elisa F.
Elisa F.2 years ago

Thank you, Ted Andrews, for your Love of Animals.

Debbie Crowe
Debbie Crowe3 years ago

We live right in the middle of the city. I was watering one evening and I saw a big possum in our yard. I think I was more afraid of him than he was of me!! Still don't know where he came from!!

Bon L.
Bon L.5 years ago

Thanks for the info.

PatrĂ­cia G.

What a marvellous story!... Thank you so much for it!

Wendy L.
W L.6 years ago

Since moving to a canyon in a small mountain range in Los Angeles, California, on three occasions, I've spotted bobcats on the other side of our backyard's wrought iron fence. The canyon shoots straight up on the other side of the fence, while our inner yard is flat. Twice it was a single bobcat. Once it was two bobcats together. Oh, the shock and joy to look up and see majestic animals meandering the curve of our upper backyard property. For the bobcat(s), sudden happiness was replaced by an intense feeling of seeing the last man on planet Earth. Imagining what a struggle it is for the bobcat to simply survive in mountains surrounding Los Angeles. The feeling that extinction was close, actually, an odd sensation, along with feeling blessed to have the chance to see a bobcat without its seeing me. We've seen plenty of coyotes, rattlesnakes, and deer -- which all inspire awe -- or anxiety, if the coyote(s) are looking at our dog as if he were "lunch."

Bb La Desh
.6 years ago

Wonderful article, thanks for sharing!

I'm sure Ted Andrews wisdom will be sorely missed.

I'm always excited to see Deer, such beautiful amazing creatures, I hope I never lose the wonder lust.

I too live in an urban setting but the city is situated on a river which is a life source for many animals.

Cathy H.
Past Member 6 years ago

In a shamanic journeying workshop, I discoverd Hawk is my power animal. Three yrs. ago while trying to decide to change careers, I was lying down on a bench in the park. The second I opened my eyes, a hawk flew right over me, no more then 2-3 feet above, and landed on the ground at the end of the bench and stayed there for a long time. The message was to trust myself. Shorlty after while really struggling with the decision to move to So Cal from N. CA, I rounded a corner on the American River bike trail on my bike, when we saw a huge hawk sitting on a tree stump right along side the bike trail, and it looked me straight in the eye. Very unusual. The message? Again to trust myself and my decision. Shortly after moving, I had another unusual hawk encounter which I believe was my confirmation.

Sue L.
michelle t.6 years ago

A very nice tribute to an animal lover.

Jeramie D.
Jeramie D.6 years ago

What a beautiful tribute.

gail d.
gail dair6 years ago

Thanks for post