The Incredible Story of Spirit the black leopard

This week we are sharing a story about a black leopard named Spirit. Spirit was previously named Diablo (meaning Devil) when he lived in a European zoo, in which he had been abused. The trauma turned him into an extremely aggressive cat, with no trust in humans. He growled and snarled at anyone who approached his cage. 

Eventually he was moved to Jukani Wildlife Sanctuary in South Africa, run by conservationist Jurg Olsen and his wife, Karen. Sadly, Diablo remained in his cage, refusing to come out. After 6 months of no progress,  Anna Breytenbach — an animal communicator — visited the sanctuary.

Anna had no knowledge of his past or present condition. She was able to communicate with him telepathically, as you will see in the video clip. When Anna first approached the leopard’s cage he didn’t snarl and growl like always, but instead a wave of peace and calm washed over him. She kneeled outside his cage and look in at him. The two connected and spoke to one another telepathically.

He felt overwhelmed by his new surroundings, disliked humans for what they’d done to him and hated his name. He felt completely under-appreciated, even though he was actually very powerful. He also asked to be known by the name Spirit instead.

He was also very concerned about 2 young cubs that used live next to his cage at the zoo. In fact, it was this information that convinced everyone at Jukani that Anna was truly communicating with the leopard. There was no other way Anna could have known about the cubs — even Jurg had forgotten.

So much more was revealed because of Anna’s extraordinary ability and gift for speaking with, and understanding, animals. In less than 24 hours, this beautiful leopard’s entire world, demeanor, and life changed for the better. He is a now a very happy cat and lives at an amazing location in Plettenberg Bay, along with the two cubs who are now now fully grown leopards named Tess and Kito. They all roam happily in their own enclosure, enjoying the sunshine and their fellow Jukani neighbors.

spiritAnna has co-written a children’s book with Andrew Newman, “How Diablo became Spirit,” which is beautifully illustrated by Alexis Aronson:  Anna’s website recommends the book as a “sure-fire winner for parents seeking conscious parenting tools. It will help children recognize and appreciate all life forms, including animals, as the sentient beings that they are. How Diablo Became Spirit ends with Spirit’s Secret Steps for communicating with animals.”

Anna and Spirit’s experience was part of a full length documentary: “The Animal Communicator,” which was directed and filmed by the Foster Brothers ( and produced by NHU Africa. The latter and its parent company are sole owners of worldwide rights. If you’re interested in buying a copy of “The Animal Communicator” DVD (the full documentary), it is intermittently available here.

Featured Image credit by Jukani Wildlife Sanctuary.


Spread the word. Share this post!