Canine Connections


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Dogs and Humans and the connections between them

How does this connection work, how do offspring of apes and offspring of wolves connect?

There is a level of involvement – a bond that develops and which is (to the uninitiated) unexplainable.  We share our homes, our food, our lives with these four legged fur folk and when they are gone there is a hole in our hearts, and an empty spot in our lives.

I look at his mat, his food dish or even the door to the house and all I can see is that he is not there and won’t be there and I cry.

I know some people don’t understand the attraction at all and others are inexplicably drawn to cats instead of dogs, but I have always been a dog person.  For me a dog is a companion, a friend, a supporter.  A dog loves his person with nothing held back.  They are always happy to see you, even if you have been there all day already.  They believe the best about you at all times.  Walks are good, pets are good, snuggles are great.  They are sorry for doing wrong, happy to please you and loving beyond belief.

At the toughest times in my life – through my teenager years, through financial trials and my dissolving marriage through to concerns about my own teenagers – I had a dog to sit with, a dog who leaned against me and listened as I muttered, grumbled, cried and at times wailed.  Salt tears were licked away warmth was given, sympathy given with no conditions or impatience.

It has been a hard week – I had two dogs – now I have none.

Brave Tammy who should have been with us for years and years to comIMG_1272e was defeated by diabetes.  Comfort seeking Cleetus, who should have simply been slowing down and taking it easy was gone within a week of being diagnosed.  And my heart hurts.



What do I do with the collars and leashes and blankets and toys?  The food and treats I can give away, but their stuff holds their memories and mine.  Tammy grew up on a farm and had never had a collar or leash on before she came to us.   She had never been in a city before she came to us and traffic and big noises scared her.  She came to see her leash as a symbol of going outside and yet of being safe with us.

Cleetus had been a stray on the street before coming to us, he was fearful of men and especially men with hats, but he took one look at my son Nolan and tried to climb up and sit in his lap and when he couldn’t just leaned against him. Connections.

Those connections run deep and run both ways. No one will ever get me to believe they bond with us only for food and shelter.

Mothers Lament

Why don’t they do what I know, they CAN do?

It is so clear to me:

  • how to they can avoid pitfalls
  • how to they can reach their goals
  • how to accomplish their tasks

Why don’t they do what they say they want to do?pitfalls.jpg

Why does it seem easier to them to disappoint than to work? to try? to challenge? to investigate?

  • where did their curiosity go?
  • where did their sense of duty, of commitment, of honour go?

Is it really easier to not try, than to try?  How do they reconcile their potential greatness with their poor existence?

Why don’t they do what I know they can do?

Pride leads to pride

Is there any truth to the idea that ones surroundings affects ones piece of mind?  I think so.  A warm comfortable room leads to warm comfortable thoughts.  A clean organized work space feels good to be in and work flows and time passes.

Does personal chaos lead to disorder or does disorder lead to personal chaos?  In my experience they are so closely related it might not even matter which comes first.  Once someone is on a downward spiral of disorder and disaster the slide continues.

It takes heroic action to change.  However I believe that change can begin with something as simple as cleaning a room, doing the dishes, ironing a shirt…. basically in taking pride in ones space, possessions and home.  In fact maybe that is the key to the quandary, PRIDE.  If you have pride in yourself, you take the time for pride in your home, your work and your family.  Without pride how can you car for your space, your home or yourself.

Pride must be built, and it must be built on solid reality.  Build it up one accomplishment at a time.  Do something quantifiable and then take time to congratulate yourself.  Make a list of those things you want to achieve, make a SMART list (Specific, Measurable, achievable, Realistic and Time based) and cross items off as you get them done…. this gives you tangible proof of your achievements.

fight against change

Is it a truism that we will always fight against what is good for us?  Why is it so difficult to learn from the advice of others?  Is this strictly a teenage issue of does this human trait also limit the adoption of new processes and methodologies in the business world?  Does the truism explain the low rate of acceptance and compliance for any new system?

I have observed that even when the best reasons can be trotted out and paraded about, people will always complain about the change and sing the praises of the old system.  Even when and perhaps especially when up to that very moment they complained about how difficult the old system was.

There are two tactics to take in introducing a new system or process.

  1. Do it the new way or else!
  2. Involve the people in the design of the new system.

I believe that the second way is best, however it does take the patient hand of someone with a guiding vision.


Some choices come to us in a flash and in that same flash we can see which option to choose, the right choice is obvious.  Other choices slide up on us slowly like a shadow moving across the lawn.

Which comes to us first, the opportunity or the choice?  Conventional wisdom holds that things happen and we cope, we deal and we make our choice of what to do – which path to take.  I believe that much of the time it works the other way.  We decide we want a change and then it happens.  Long long before you pick your new house, the colour for the wall or that new pair of shoes…you decided you needed something and whether you knew it or not you thought about what that might be.

If Only…

If only they could see themselves as we see them.  With faults yes, but also with possibilities and with seeds of a bright future, limited only by their desire and their ability to work.

Then I wonder what others see when they look at me.  Am I missing not only my faults, but my possibilities?  Am I missing chances and opportunities?  Are there obvious choices that others see but that I do not make?  Are there chores I neglect?  Things that I should do that I don’t even see?

What am I missing?

Who or what suffers because I don’t know?

AND ——> who can tell me?