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Are you doing one of these don’ts?

posted July 28th, 2014 by
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A light bulb recently clicked for me while reading an article called “11 things humans do that dogs hate.” An interesting read, not all of it will ring true for every dog and owner. But one small graph jumped out at me:

“Tension on the leash isn’t the only way a dog can pick up how you’re feeling. You can tell when a person you’re around is feeling tense, even if you don’t realize it. Dogs have the same ability. The more stressed and wound-up you are, the more stressed and wound-up your dog is. And dogs, just like us, don’t like that feeling. You might roll your eyes, but the next time your dog is acting frustrated and tense, check in with yourself — have you been feeling that way for the last few minutes, for the last few hours, or the last few days? Your dog might just be acting as your mirror. If you need a reason to meditate, helping your dog calm down is a great one.”

Aha! With a two going on thirteen-year-old little girl and a recently crawling little boy in the house, my stress level has increased just a tad. And maybe my patience has been waning just a bit. My two sweet boys and even my kitties have been a little more skittish and less than friendly with me lately.

The concept isn’t new to me, of course, and I’m sure it isn’t news to many of you reading this, either. I learned long ago from my childhood pets just how intuitive and sensitive animals can be.

But sometimes when you are in the middle of a stressful situation, it can be easy to focus on yourself and your feelings, forgetting how  others around you are also impacted, furry ones included.

I will be making an effort in the coming days to bring the stress level down for all of the beings in the house, starting with a little yoga.

-Lauren Cavagnolo, [email protected]