The shift is the term generically employed to qualify the transformation of man into a wolf and vice-versa. This gives ground to a lot of different states.
The transformation may be temporary or permanent; the were-animal may be the man himself metamorphosed; may be his double whose activity leaves the real man to all appearance unchanged; may be his soul, which goes forth seeking whom it may devour, leaving its body in a state of trance; or it may be no more than the messenger of the human being, a real animal or a familiar spirit, whose intimate connection with its owner is shown by the fact that any injury to it is believed, by a phenomenon known as repercussion, to cause a corresponding injury to the human being.
Even if the denotation of lycanthropy is limited to the wolf-metamorphosis of living human beings, the beliefs classed together under this head are far from uniform, and the term is somewhat capriciously applied.
Many people claim they are were-animals but are not clear on the chapter.