You’re probably a dog…

English: sleeping dog

“Yes, we have these great ideals about how we’ve supposed to be [...] we don’t have to pretend that our irritablity is not there or compare it unfavorably with our ideal version of ourselves. We could simply take a breath and say, “This is how I am — this is anger, this is fear, this is irritation.” [...] In that regard I would like to read to you my new favorite little piece: “If you can sit quietly after difficult news, if in financial downturns you remain perfectly calm, if you can see your neighbors travel to fantastic places without a twinge of jealousy, if you can happily eat whatever is put on your plate and fall asleep after a day of running around without a drink or a pill, if you can always find contentment just where you are, you are probably a dog.”

Don’t believe what you hear about black cats

The most beautiful animal I ever owned [actually, she owned me!] was a black cat named Boo; far from bringing bad luck, they bring love and affection for those that love them. Now that I know the shelter has a hard time finding homes for them, after Halloween I’m going to adopt some more!

Full story at: Don’t believe what you hear about black cats.

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The Healing Power Of Furry Friends

healing power of animals

Anyone who has ever had a pet can vouch for the fact that seeing their loving little eager-to-please faces as you come home can really lift your spirits after a long day.

Even if they do destroy your home, keep you up with their crying all night or leave unwanted presents on your new carpet – you can’t help but love their butter-wouldn’t-melt-in-their-mouth faces!

Therefore, it’s not surprising that studies have confirmed that having a little furry friend does indeed do wonders for your overall happiness. Study researcher Allen McConnell, of Miami University in Ohio, said in a statement.

“We observed evidence that pet owners fared better, both in terms of well-being outcomes and individual differences, than non-owners on several dimensions.

Specifically, pet owners had greater self-esteem, were more physically fit, tended to be less lonely, were more conscientious, were more extroverted, less fearful and less preoccupied than non-owners.”

On a deeper level, having a pet as a companion can also help mend the pain associated with loss, or during periods of loneliness or depression. They force you to care for another life – thus helping to take the focus off your own problems and provide you with unconditional love.

Everyone wants to be loved and needed – pets fulfill this nurturing role. This can be particularly important for middle-aged parents who may be suffering from ‘empty nest syndrome’ after their children have moved out, or for the elderly who are alone and have limited family and friends.

Of course if you’re not an animal person, or you’re having trouble looking after yourself, having an animal will not be for you. However, if you’re in a position to care for a special little friend, getting a pet can be the best remedy for loneliness.

One of our favorite pet stories has to be the story of Faith, a dog born with deformed front legs. However, as a result of her owner’s love and determination, she not only averted the doggy lethal injection, but now also walks on her back legs!

Has your pet helped you get through a difficult time or increased your overall happiness? We’d love to hear your story and how they’ve made a difference in your life, or to someone you know!” via The Healing Power Of Furry Friends.

Blog readers know all about my black cat Boo and how our ‘kitty time’ has changed my life. How about you? Got an animal friend?

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Don’t lunge at the gerbil!

English: Dove gerbils have light grey fur and ...

Image via Wikipedia

In ‘The Language of Letting Go’ Melody Beattie shares a story…

“One day, my son brought a gerbil home to live with us. We put it in a cage. Some time later, the gerbil escaped. For the next six months, the animal ran frightened and wild through the house. So did we—chasing it. “There it is. Get it!” we’d scream, each time someone spotted the gerbil. I, or my son, would throw down whatever we were working on, race across the house, and lunge at the animal hoping to catch it. I worried about it, even when we didn’t see it. “This isn’t right,” I’d think. “I can’t have a gerbil running loose in the house. We’ve got to catch it. We’ve got to do something.” A small animal, the size of a mouse had the entire household in a tizzy. One day, while sitting in the living room, I watched the animal scurry across the hallway. In a frenzy, I started to lunge at it, as I usually did, then I stopped myself. No, I said. I’m all done. If that animal wants to live in the nooks and crannies of this house, I’m going to let it. I’m done worrying about it. I’m done chasing it. It’s an irregular circumstance, but that’s just the way it’s going to have to be. I let the gerbil run past without reacting. I felt slightly uncomfortable with my new reaction—not reacting—but I stuck to it anyway. I got more comfortable with my new reaction—not reacting. Before long, I became downright peaceful with the situation. I had stopped fighting the gerbil. One afternoon, only weeks after I started practicing my new attitude, the gerbil ran by me, as it had so many times, and I barely glanced at it. The animal stopped in its tracks, turned around, and looked at me. I started to lunge at it. It started to run away. I relaxed. I said. “Do what you want.” And I meant it. One hour later, the gerbil came and stood by me, and waited. I gently picked it up and placed it in its cage, where it has lived happily ever since. The moral of the story? Don’t lunge at the gerbil. He’s already frightened, and chasing him just scares him more and makes us crazy. Detachment works. Today, I will be comfortable with my new reaction—not reacting. I will feel at peace.”

‘Don’t lunge at the Gerbil’. That’s quite a motto…

Beattie, Melody (2009-12-15). The Language of Letting Go (Hazelden Meditation Series) (pp. 344-346). Hazelden. Kindle Edition.