5 traits i’ve learned from my dogs

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They’re said to be man’s best friend, instinctual and amiable. They’re considered to be a member of the family with their own bed, place to eat and the safety of our home. We teach them to sit, fetch and shake but what do we learn from them?

Dogs are incredible creatures with powerful characteristics. As I was going through my busy week, I decided to observe my always-happy pups and they had a lot of tricks up their sleeves. I allowed my dogs to train me; and oh my, what wonderful teachers.

Wag your tail
Dogs love to be happy. They don’t force their tail to wag and they don’t fake the kisses. They are genuinely THAT happy. You wake up in the morning and they’re waiting there with a wagging tail. You fill their food bowl; they’re wagging that tail. You say “good puppy”, pet them and simply smile in their direction and guess what? They’re tails a waggin’.

What if it was that easy for you and me to be that happy? It is. It’s more than happiness; it’s showing your gratitude, it’s leading with your heart and it’s clearing your head of that muck and sludge that brings you down. Make the choice, everyday, to be happy with the little things. Because at the end of the day, it’s the little things that bring us joy.

Show excitement for your loved ones
We endure long days of work, errands or traffic and we can’t wait to step foot into the safety of our homes. And who’s the first one to greet us at the door? Our overly excited, full of adrenaline and “oh my gosh she’s really home” pups. They stop what they’re doing and make sure they’re the first to hug, kiss and love on us… how hospitable of them.

Too often I’m wrapped up in dinner, the baby or cleaning to give my husband a proper homecoming every night. How hard would it be to step away from dinner, set the baby down or turn the vacuum cleaner off to shower my hubby with warmth and affection?

Soak up the sun
My dogs could spend every waking moment in the warmth of the sun. And if it’s too cold outside, they seek out the stream of sunshine gleaming in the house. To them, sunshine is a necessity. Little do they know that their immune systems are thanking them.

Our health could benefit in great ways from spending just 20 minutes in the sun. Have you ever noticed the spike in mood you experience when indulging in the sunlight? So the next time your dogs ask to be let outside, go with them. Follow their lead and nourish yourself.

Sleep when you’re tired
When my pups feel the weight of their eyes and the day’s journey on their paws, they lay down. They don’t hesitate or consider their options; they follow the direction of their bodies.

As humans with great responsibilities, our days are slated to our children, spouses, jobs, errands, exercise (and, well, you get the point). Quite frankly, we don’t have the time a dog has to sleep when we’re tired or lay down at a moments notice, but we do have the will power. When your body is feeling the drag of the day, when your mind is over worked, make some time to sit down. Whether you sleep, meditate or sit in a dark closet; that moment is yours. That’s your ability to give yourself a break. Pay attention to your needs and let them become a priority.

Stretch
Why do you think the most popular yoga pose was named after our 4-legged furry friends? Dogs have an accepting relationship with their anatomy, it’s a give and take kind of thing and boy is it beautiful. They stretch after lying down, post exercise and following a good belly rub.

Everyone pause and reach your hands high to the sky, higher than high, let out a moan and tell me how good that felt. Our muscles become stale; we sit behind desks, walk from one meeting to the next and carry loads of laundry up and down those treacherous stairs. But when do we stop to show our muscles some love? It’s almost euphoric to let out a good stretch, and our bodies LOVE a good state of euphoria.

In conclusion, I believe we all owe our dogs a great big thank you for the daily lessons! I encourage you to stop what you’re doing and let your inner animal shine.

Published by Jacqueline Leigh Boeheim

Jacqueline Leigh is a children's author based in Georgia. She spent many years working alongside advertising executives, producing inspirational and ground break print, web and television ads. Jacqueline later put her focus on journalism, doing what she loves, writing stories for the general public. She has been published in multiple print and digital publications. She’s interviewed big-name bands and small-town businesses, both contributing to her understanding and joy of writing. Jacqueline has now taken her experiences and focused on becoming a children’s author, a lifetime dream.

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