One of the main lessons Kathy has learned from dogs over the years is that you can find the truth in your dogs’ reflections of your own behavior.
In this episode of Enlightened by Dogs, she explores how we can become better dog moms through practicing compassion, kindness, empathy, and clarity.
Interspecies cooperation doesn’t come from heavy obedience training, compliance, and transacting. Kathy reveals the true recipe for cooperation and tips on how to build a stronger relationship with our beloved dogs.
In this episode:
- Why ‘together is better’
- How to build strong interspecies cooperation
- Finding a balance of traditional masculine and feminine qualities
“Dogs serve as our noses, our ears, and our courage when we need their assistance. We serve as their advocates in this human-centric life that we share. We are teachers, friends, and companions for one another.”
“This lifetime partnership that we have creates a magical circle of reciprocity like a perfect arrangement that holds the promise of guiding us humans to become ever more enlightened, through the pure reflection that our dogs mirror back to us.”
“Interspecies cooperation does not come from training, obedience, expecting compliance, controlling resources, or transacting. It comes from empathy, compassion, kindness, clarity, and it starts with us through self-awareness, mindfulness, and self-empowerment.”
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I had two beautiful, much loved Westies that came from a breeder that put 100% into her dogs and puppies. My first that I brought into my home had been socialized beautifully, as were all of her puppies. My second was adopted from the breeding group when she retired at 7 years old. They became such a part of me that when they passed, I want to just die with them.
Then a year later, in comes Sebastian. My first rescue. He had been found beside a dumpster with his four litter mates down in Arkansas. The rescue had thought he might be a Shi tzu. He turned out being a Schnauzer. AND. . .He became my first reactive dog . I was in chaos. After my two perfect girls, I was at a loss with him. We took him to obedience class and he was
scared to death. He was scared of the big room, he was afraid of all the dogs. We made it through, but I sure didn’t feel any better about it. He had thrown up one day at home and I tried to pick it up and he turned on me, growled and bit me. . .hard.
And, in came YOU. It made such huge sense to me. I began to look at him with such different eyes. What a difference it has made! We feel so much better about each other and I can see him changing. (And, I had to change my husband too. He thought wrestling was a fun game with him. and other rough-housing was the thing to do). Sebastian wasn’t a dog you could do that with. First we stopped that, We still have days ahead of us to build our relationship (Sebastian, not my husband), but there is a whole new outlook for the days ahead. I never thought this approach would work with him. He seemed impossible. I truly didn’t know what to do. I knew I wouldn’t give up on him though. In the beginning the thought weighed on me heavily.
So, I thank you with all that is in me, and Sebastian thanks you. I found a very smart, loving boy inside of him. Our future with each other seems so much brighter. We still have a little barker though, but we’re working on that. What a difference it made to validate what he was barking at and reassuring everything was okay. I acknowledged and calmed him, instead of yelling “no” at him.
Thank you, thank you.