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Monday, April 10,2017

The Tail Never Lies

By Tina Valant-Siebelts  
The Tail Never Lies

I trust dogs more often than I trust most people. By attuning to a dog’s body language, I have never been led astray or endangered. Dogs have no hidden agenda. Their ability to relish the present moment is something “we who walk upright” should aspire to. Dogs don’t worry about how they messed up yesterday, things they have no control over, or what tomorrow may bring. There is just now.

Right now. This moment. Nothing else matters (except the treat jar).

Another formidable trait in dogs is the ability to forgive. With victims of abuse and/or neglect, there is no logical reason they should trust a human…ever. Consider twenty two dogs from Vick’s Bad Newz kennels who were relocated to Best Friends’ Sanctuary. The group was renamed the Vicktory dogs. Having endured unspeakable physical and emotional abuses, most of these former fighters earned their Canine Good Citizen certificates, and integrated themselves into loving homes. Several heard the call to become service and therapy dogs. Only two were courtordered to remain at Best Friends.

Formerly fierce grand champion, Lucas welcomed a totally different life, up to his peaceful passing four years ago. Meryl is reveling in the antithesis of her beginnings, among the red canyons. All twenty two pit bulls overcame extreme adversity and will be remembered as ambassadors of their - often greatly misunderstood - breed.

I like to think that every good day in a rescued dog’s life erases a week of bad memories. Once the person gains trust, a dog bonds at an accelerated pace, and rewards humankind with loyalty, unconditional love and so much more. Dogs love us for simply providing their basic needs: shelter, food and water. They serve as police/military K9s, and offer support of every type imaginable. Every day, there’s a case of a rescued dog saving its family from fire, wild animals, or unsavory characters.

A working farm dog doesn’t dream of a posh city life, he doesn’t know any different. A yorkie doesn’t wish she was a Bernese mountain dog. Dogs are just happy to be themselves, whether they are outdoor deterrent dogs or pampered pooches. Some endure luxurious lifestyles and fine fare served in crystal bowls. They are coiffed, adorned, bejeweled; shuttled to play dates, socials, and treatments. Yet, dogs don’t compare themselves. They are content with what they have, even when all they have is just a warm bed, clean water, some kibble... and a kind human for them to watch over and protect.

Dogs really enjoy the journey.

Whether they’re sticking their head out a window, capturing scents and sounds, rolling in something delicious, or joyously wiggling their entire bodies at the sight of their favorite humans ~ dogs employ all their senses to rejoice in being alive. Follow their cue. Heighten your awareness. Close your eyes when you eat, really taste the flavors. Really listen for messages being given. When you touch or hug someone, feel their heartbeat. When you gaze at anything, find its beauty. Sniff out the best aspect in all your daily adventures, from the paltry to the profound. And know, the tail never lies - try to live up to that.

Brandon and his furry brother, Henry enjoyed a great day at Boxer Friends’ Dog Bowl. Henry is a rescued mixed breed.


Tina Valant-Siebelts is a confirmed dog-o-holic, mom to many rescued pets, who volunteers with numerous organizations. To "fill all those dog bowls," Tina is an award-winning photographer, writer & event coordinator. www.HaveDog.com

 

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