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    We are all elements of nature

    I believe that we are all elements of ‘nature’...always changing, and always affected by that which ripples in our own environments.

    Like everything in the environment, our food can be classified as something that is nourishing or something that is toxic.  Nourishing food leads to healthy bodies.  Healthy bodies are more vibrant and energetic... and they’re far more efficient at fighting off disease....Caution...a healthy lifestyle could lead to lower vet bills and a longer life!

    Please share some of the fun things that you make a part of your dog's lifestyle that may lead to improved health and wellness.  To be fair, here's something my little girl gets for dinner.

    I love this game

    Here's a new game that I've been playing the last few mornings with my dad.

    It usually starts by him letting me chew on one of my favourite chew treats.  Sometimes he makes me lay on the couch to chew it, other times he just lets me chew it wherever I want.  Then he takes it from me and makes me lie 'down' and 'stay' while he hides it in another room.

    When he says 'find it' that's when all the fun starts.  It's my job to look all over for it.  Sometimes I can find it with my eyes but I usually need to use my nose to find it.  It's not as hard to find as you might think because it smells really strong.

    When I find it I get to chew it for a few more minutes... then the game begins all over again.


    Be mindful where you look (and how you look) when walking your dog.

    A pack leader chooses his direction and leads by pointing with his nose... It's that simple.  He doesn't wait to make sure his pack is following.  They just follow.

    Think about a mother duck swimming at the front of a line of baby ducklings.  Is she looking back at them, or are they looking at her?  Is she negotiating with them:  "ok ducklings... I know the water is warm here and that you're having fun but let's go already"?  Or do her babies simply follow her?

    I see many dog owners staring at their dogs when they're walking.... it's like they're beaming love out of their eyes straight into their dogs.  These are also the same owners who have trouble walking their dogs.  Their dogs pull... they sniff forever and never come... they lie down on the walk... etc.

    From a dog's perspective, I imagine it could be a little confusing when your human stares at you while walking.  For starters, humans are the natural leaders of the pack so your dog is likely wondering why you look at him instead of scanning the environment to ensure safety or to set the direction.   Instead our dogs think we're deferring to them for leadership because we're looking in their direction...

    Getting your dog to follow you is simpler than you think... but you need to lead with actions, not with words... Firmly grab the leash, turn your nose and shoulders in the direction you want to head in, and wait for some eye contact (or just say 'let's go')... and make sure you go.  Your dog will follow.

    Remember... when you're holding the leash you and your dog are a team.  Be compassionate... there's no need to yank the leash or get frustrated.   Be calm and direct.