Celebrate National Dog Day at Kitsap Humane

August 25, 2011

Tomorrow, August 26, 2011 is National Dog Day. It also happens to be my birthday. I thought this was so fitting since most of my adult life has been spent learning about, advocating for and training dogs. Our dear furry, four-footed companions have taught me so much about how to live a good life that I cannot imagine a better way to spend my birthday than here at KHS having a party for them.

The most important lesson that I have learned from knowing dogs is that in this life, joy is all that matters. Anything that does not bring levity to your heart is simply not worth your effort. Canines also taught me that we all need meaningful work to do in order to feel fulfilled and connected to the world we live in. Work is play if you enjoy what you are doing.

Another great dog insight is if you want cooperation and teamwork, ask nicely and reward the efforts of your partners when they are successful. This makes you a respected leader and motivates others to want to work with you. Dogs know that if you feel sad, the best thing to do is go for a walk and spend some time with a dear friend who does not expect you to talk, or will listen attentively if you need to. We can all benefit from this type of empathy for others.

Knowing dogs can be quite humbling as well, if you are paying attention to what they are showing you. I was a little embarrassed when I realized that dogs only do what works, and humans will do what is not working louder, longer and with greater conviction. Go figure. Though my list of valuable lessons learned from dogs is long, I will end this blog with one of my favorites. Forgiveness. When someone you love has hurt your heart, forgive them and show them that they still mean everything to you. They will be better for your experiencing your grace.

Please come join me tomorrow and let’s celebrate the wonder of the dogs in our lives! You may even find a new life coach, spiritual advisor and best friend to take home with you! See ya there!
                                            – KHS Behavior and Training Coordinator Deana Case

                                                        Photo by Kelly Coultas