The Compassionate Dog Trainer

 In past articles we have shared the importance of patience and open-mindedness while training dogs.  If you would like to read those articles, visit https://wordpress.com/view/iscdtfordogtrainersblog.school.blog

Today, we reveal the next trait:

EMPATHY 

Empathy is one of the most important skills we possess as humans. The ability to understand and relate to another person’s feelings from their point of view rather than our own. This provides healthy relationships in both our personal and professional lives.  Empathy allows us to show compassion. Compassion is necessary when training dogs.

Each day we meet dog owners who struggle with behavior.  Behavioral issues range from housebreaking to jumping or lack of impulse control to aggression.  

Dog trainers know that most problems are the result of learned behavior, as well as, a lack of structure, rules and consistency.  It is easy to mislay an empathetic understanding with blame when clients fail to follow training practices and advice you teach them.   Blame is not an effective approach in helping your client and it could cost the dog their home.  

We need to remain sympathetic toward owners and their situation, while transforming them into successful trainers for their dog.   No one wants a dog who lunges at animals or people they pass on a walk, nor does anyone want the inside of their house used as a giant canine bathroom.  Owners don’t intentionally do the wrong thing. They simply don’t understand how to fix the behavior. 

People love their dogs and inadvertently allow human emotion to hinder training success.  Here are some possible reasons clients struggle with dog training success:

1. They feel bad imposing rules on the dog.  

2. They don’t like change and therefore, struggle to enforce change on their pets.  

3. They lack understanding as to how dogs with structure thrive compared to dogs without structure.

4. They believe they don’t have the time needed to train their dog.

It is our job to help them understand that:

1. Dogs are happy and well-adjusted when they have routine and rules in place. 

2. The absence of a leader confuses and even frightens dogs.  Dogs hate to lead the pack.

3. Human-Canine bond strengthens through dog training. 

4. Training increases dogs’ confidence. 

5. Training encourages the dog to respect you. Not in a  fearful way, rather similar to the way a child respects their parents.

6. Most importantly, training is the key to achieving training goals and stopping negative behavior.

When dog owners hire us, we want to form a team and work together to accomplish the client’s goals.  You help more dogs when you are empathetic to their owner’s situation and help them overcome obstacles (even if they placed those obstacles in the way of success).  Regardless of the situation, show empathy toward your clients and work hard to change their train of thought. Only then can you help the most important subject of your job:  the dog! 

Our 18 week online program is a hands-on program where students are required to work with dogs. Skill and ability is determined through a series of videos submitted to the school. We also offer a 2-week and 4-month in-person internship. To learn more about the courses we offer, visit ISCDT.com

Written by Katie McKnight

Traveling with Your Dog Shouldn’t be Stressful

We want our dogs to travel with us, yet their presence can cause us to stress.

What if they soil inside?

What if they break something?

What if they get loose and run away?

Stress can cause us to fall back into bad habits of yelling at, or punishing, our dogs. In turn, the dog is stressed and more likely to mess up.

When you travel with your dog, limit the dog’s freedom to ensure they don’t destroy anything or climb on furniture (remember, not everyone wants dogs on their furniture).

It is not foreign for a fully housebroken dog to mark or have an accident inside a hotel or visiting home. Our first rescue dog never went on furniture and was fully housebroken, yet the first time we brought her on vacation, she jumped on the bed and urinated on it. Anxiety caused this behavior.

The same dog had the habit of licking dirty dishes in my dishwasher. While I did not condone it, it was a behavior I had not yet conquered. When we visited my in-law’s house, I was careful not to allow her access to the kitchen while we cleaned up after meals to ensure her tongue was not in the dishwasher. My father-in-law would have thrown all his dishes away if he’d ever witnessed the behavior.

Another error dog owners make, especially when stressed, is failing to issue commands to their dogs. Instead, they scream the dog’s name repeatedly and wonder why the dog isn’t listening. Be mindful of your words when communicating with your dog.

If your dog is not following commands, don’t get frustrated or angry. Dogs do not generalize. Assume your dog does not understand the commands in this strange location or with the added distractions. Use this opportunity to advance training by calmly working commands. Be sure to provide plenty of rewards when they comply.

Finally, make sure your dog has ID tags that include your cell phone number rather than just your home number and home address. This way if your dog were to escape through an open door or gate, you will be alerted the moment someone finds them.

Here are a few items to bring with you on vacation:

  • crate or play yard
  • leash your dog can drag indoors to ensure they stay close by
  • harness
  • gates to limit access to other rooms
  • toys/bones to keep them entertained
  • walking leash
  • training treats
  • ID Tag that includes your cell phone numbers
  • A dog seat belt to keep them safe during car rides

A little hard work now will make future trips more enjoyable for you, your hosts and your dog.

Our 18 week online program is a hands-on program where students are required to work with dogs. Skill and ability is determined through a series of videos submitted to the school. We also offer a 2-week and 4-month in-person internship. To learn more about the courses we offer, visit ISCDT.com

Written by
Katie McKnight

Eight Proven Ways to Get your Dog to Sleep Later

Does your dog wake you up early on your days off from work?  Do they struggle settling down at night when you want to sleep?  Here are tips to get your adult dog to settle at night and/or sleep later in the morning. 

  1.  Refrain from feeding and interacting with your dog the moment he wakes up.  Delaying meals and attention will deter pushy behavior.
  2. You can delay your dog’s feeding schedule up to one hour by gradually pushing it back.  Each day, feed your dog fifteen minutes later. Within four days, your dog’s meal times will be one hour later than normal. 
  3. Dogs are easily awoken by the sun and sounds.If they sleep in a crate, cover it. For dogs who sleep outside crates, keep the room dark.  Use of a sound machine will drown out sounds inside and outside the home, especially on garbage pick up days.
  4. Make sure you dog has a warm, comfortable bed to sleep on.
  5. Give your dog plenty of exercise each day.  Scheduling evening exercise helps empty the bladder and may help a dog sleep better.
  6. Make sure you bring your dog outside to eliminate right before bed.  
  7. If you and your dog rise with your alarm, set it 15 minutes earlier for several days. When the alarm goes off, hit snooze and roll back over, avoiding eye contact and interaction with your dog.  Every few days deduct five minutes, until you can set your alarm for the correct wake-up call. By that time, your dog will not be triggered by the alarm. When you get up, start your morning routine without interacting with your dog for 15 minutes. This teaches the dog that the alarm is not a feeding bell. 
  8. Do not permit your dog to drink water late in the evening. This may cause your dog to rise early for a bathroom break.  

Note: Due to bladders that are not fully developed, puppies who awaken during the night should be taken to the bathroom.  It is unfair to expect puppies to sleep late in the morning or throughout the night. If you struggle with housebreaking issues, check out our online housebreaking course, which includes help from a certified dog trainer. Visit https://iscdt.com/product/iscdt-housebreaking-lesson/ .

If your adult dog begins to show signs of incontinence, take your dog to the vet to rule out urinary tract infections and digestive issues, rather than assuming it is behavioral or making any of these changes in their sleep habits.

Our 18 week online program is a hands-on program where students are required to work with dogs. Skill and ability is determined through a series of videos submitted to the school. We also offer a 2-week and 4-month in-person internship. To learn more about the courses we offer, visit ISCDT.com

Changing A Dog’s Name

Two questions we receive often are:

1. Is it possible to change a dog’s name after you adopt them?

Answer: You can absolutely change your dog’s name. Many people change the dog’s name to represent a fresh start for the dog, especially if the dog’s past was negative.

2. How do you teach dogs their name?

1. Go to a room that is quiet and low distraction
2. Say the name ONCE in a happy voice
3. When the dog looks at you, say “yes” to mark the behavior *
4. provide a treat and affection
5. Repeat steps

Advance your training:

1. Practice Steps 1 – 4 in different rooms of your home
2. Slowly add distraction levels and locations for practice.

*can use a clicker in place of the word “yes” to mark the behavior.

Follow us on Facebook and Instagram for dog tips and information. Have a question? Leave it below in the comments.

Watch our non-fancy, video to see the training steps in action.

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Our 18 week online program is a hands-on program where students are required to work with dogs. Skill and ability is determined through a series of videos submitted to the school. We also offer a 2-week and 4-month in-person internship. To learn more about the courses we offer, visit ISCDT.com

Learn How Patience Will Improve Your Dog Training Prowess

Last Wednesday we kicked off our ten-week series on the “Traits of a Professional
Dog Trainer”, with an article entitled, How Open-Mindedness and Flexibility Improves Your Dog Training SkillIf you missed it, please click this link to read it: https://wordpress.com/view/iscdtfordogtrainersblog.school.blog

In addition to educating yourself in the craft of dog training and working with numerous dogs to increase your skill, there are ten traits that will make you stand above other dog trainers.  This article covers the second trait:

Patience

Dog training is not only about the dog and it goes far beyond teaching commands.  Teaching the dog is the easy part. Our job is more about the ones who pay for our services — People. 

In this world of Amazon and Grub Hub delivery, it is easy to fall into the belief that everything happens with the click of a button and the blink of an eye. When it comes to shopping and food delivery, that is often true. These companies make our lives incredibly easy with their door-to-door service.   

When it comes to learning and mastering a new skill, patience and time are the key to success.  Here are areas patience plays a vital role in your career as a dog trainer.

New Trainers. It is important that new dog trainers have patience with themselves.  It takes time to learn a new craft and it takes even longer to master your skill. The ability to train your own dog isn’t enough. Your dog will improve your skill, however, it takes at least one hundred dogs to drastically improve your dog-handling practices.  You must work with different breeds of dogs, temperaments and levels of knowledge. Each dog you work with, provides different scenarios for you to learn.  

Don’t compare yourself to a trainer who has worked in the field for years.  Doing so will only frustrate and prevent you from moving forward. Stop believing you will never reach the level of success as the trainer on television or the one with the hundred Youtube videos.  Instead of wallowing in self-doubt, spend your free time working as a dog trainer’s apprentice. There are plenty of volunteer opportunities with rescues and dog shelters. You can also gain skills by working with your family and friends’ dogs.   Focus on the dogs you work with and enjoy your path to a new career.

Clients. Clients often require several reminders when it comes to proper leash handling and issuing commands.   They put off implementing a tool, such as having the dog drag a leash or practicing with the dog on a daily basis.  Often times, as the dog behavior improves, the humans become complacent in their training, which leads to old problems resurfacing.

In order to successfully train a dog, we need to train the owners too.  It is important to remember that the owners are also learning a new skill set.  They need to adjust their body language and learn to keep their emotions in check. They learn a new vocabulary, hand signals and leash handling skills.  Often times, they must change bad habits they’ve practiced for years, because these habits likely contributed to their dog issues. Sometimes trainers forget what it feels like to train a dog for the first time. This leads to frustration with their human clients.

We certainly cannot place blame on them.  We are hired to help them fix the problems, not point fingers.  Dog trainers need to help their human clients overcome obstacles by providing gentle reminders and willingly revisiting  old lessons. We need to help them move forward in their training by guiding them through a difficult lessons rather than grabbing the leash and doing the work for them.  

We teach humans to train their own dogs. In doing so, we provide them with an entirely new skill set.  Practice, time and repetition is how we help them succeed. None of us are born dog trainers. Practice patience with your human clients while they learn. 

Dogs. In our last blog we discussed how dogs learn differently. In this post, we are going to discuss other ways patience plays a role in dog training.  

Recently we had a client with a five-month old dog.  We taught the dog sit-implied stay during the first lesson. At home, the owner could cross the entire room and back without the dog moving.  Three days after the lesson, he decided to show off the new skill during a party in a friend’s backyard. Naturally the dog failed and the owner expressed frustration at our second lesson.  

The client didn’t know that dogs simply cannot generalize when it comes to commands and behavior.  We explained to him that there are four stages of learning for dogs.   He learned that dog training does not happen overnight and agreed to follow our training module. A couple of weeks later, his dog achieve their goal of a sit-implied stay in different environments.

No one learns to perfect a command overnight.  Pushing too fast or too hard leads to frustration and failure.  Dogs are no different. We need to help our clients understand that dogs’ brains are wired differently than ours.  Repetition, consistency and slowly adding distraction will help them achieve their goals.

Patience is an important skill for life and when training dogs. Remember to include patience in your dog training program.  Also keep it in mind when it comes to your own education and growth.

Until next time…keep up the great work in discovering your passion,

Katie and Jessica

Our 18 week online program is a hands-on program where students are required to work with dogs. Skill and ability is determined through a series of videos submitted to the school. We also offer a 2-week and 4-month in-person internship. To learn more about the courses we offer, visit ISCDT.com

Written by: Katie McKnight

How Open-Mindedness and Flexibility Improves Your Dog Training Skill

Knowledge through education, skill obtained from hands-on experience and growth acquired through continued education are three excellent attributes to look for when hiring a dog trainer.

There are actually ten additional traits that professional dog trainers should possess in order to provide exemplary service to their clients. Over the next ten weeks, we will discuss each of those traits and why you should apply them to your training practice. We are going to begin this ten-week journey with Trait One:

 Open-mindedness and Flexibility.

I greatly enjoy listening to podcasts on dog training while driving from one lesson to the next. I recommend that everyone reading this blog explore different podcasts, blogs, books and articles on the subject of dog training. If you can, I suggest attending seminars too. Each of these outlets will help you gain continued knowledge in this field.  

Last week, I picked a podcast on puppy nipping.  I have techniques in place to stop puppy nipping, but am always on the hunt for alternate ideas.  The more knowledge I gain, the better equipped I am at helping my clients overcome problems, especially if  my current techniques don’t work for a particular dog.

I settled into the program, eager to learn something new.  Instead, I listened to ten minutes of the speaker bash other trainers by name and every single method each trainer offered. Aside from feeling a strong distaste toward her mean-girl behavior, I couldn’t help but think she was stunting her growth as a dog trainer by isolating herself from other trainers and their techniques.  Refusing to be as closed-minded as she, I pushed past my anger and forced myself to listen to the entire program in order to hear the tips she promised to provide. Then I unsubscribed, deciding I am better off following positive influences.

I use the example of the podcast to open a discussion on flexibility and training a dog with an open mind.  Closing our minds to ideas and suggestions is an easy road to stumble upon in this field. No one expects you to agree with or follow techniques that do not sit well with you. There are plenty that make me cringe. Just be careful not to burn bridges.  A trainer who uses a technique that you do not like, could one day provide a source of information that helps your client dog. Below are a few tips to help you avoid this common pitfall.

When it comes to clients:

When a client asks your thoughts on a technique that differs from your methods, refrain from eye rolling, snickering or insisting the technique they proposed is foolish. Instead, start a conversation.   

Ask them how their dog responds to the technique and then listen to their feedback.  Considering they hired a dog trainer, the method likely isn’t working for them or they simply struggle with the execution of the command.  Instead of blurting, “I knew it wouldn’t work,” help them solve the problem in a constructive and positive manner.

An open dialogue demonstrates to your client that you possess knowledge, professionalism and are approachable. 

When Working with Dogs:

Not all dogs learn the same.  They have their own personalities, temperaments, ability to focus, and they learn differently.  If a dog struggles, rather than assume he is incapable of learning, we need to realize we have yet to figure out how to teach that dog. Although your method works for most dogs, this one may require an entirely different approach.  You will have to utilize different techniques to help this dog understand and learn. Do not hesitate to dig into your trainer’s toolbox and examine the different techniques you have picked up over the years. This is where respect and tolerance of other trainers comes in handy.

When It Comes to Other Dog Trainers:   

Should you struggle while training a client dog, you need to turn to someone for guidance. That is only possible, if you interact with other trainers in a positive and professional manner. Most skilled trainers will happily provide insight, suggestions and referrals to one another.  Those who don’t, should not be on your “go-to” list.

It is in our best interest to listen to other trainers discuss techniques they’ve used, even if the techniques are different and uncomfortable for you. Ask questions and gather as much information as possible on the topic, then file it away in your trainer’s toolbox  for future reference. One day, a technique you despise, may be the only thing that works for a particular client or their dog (I am not referring to training tools. It can be any technique). That one crazy idea may be what that saves a dog from being surrendered to a kill shelter.  Trust us, it happens. It is the dog trainer’s responsibility to offer their clients every opportunity to succeed with their dog. Be sure to approach everything in life with an open mind and willingness to learn.

Dinosaurs are extinct.

One final thought.   Try your best not to become prehistoric in your thought process. If you refuse to open your mind to new ideas when it comes to dog training, someone else will come along and woo your clients away with their flexibility. Like dinosaurs, your prehistoric business will become extinct. 

Katie McKnight

Our 18 week online program is a hands-on program where students are required to work with dogs. Skill and ability is determined through a series of videos submitted to the school. We also offer a 2-week and 4-month in-person internship. To learn more about the courses we offer, visit ISCDT.com

 


Four Tips to Improve Training Success

Do frustrated dog owners mention that their dog follows commands better when they know a training session is about to begin?

Have them skip their normal routine of training. Here are some tips to help:

🐶 Ditch the treat pouch. Instead keep treats in your pocket

🐶 keep treat stations hidden around your home. You can keep bowls with treats high up and out of sight. This prevents a walk to the treat drawer before practicing. When the dog follows a command, mark the behavior and then reach into the secret stash to reward.

🐶 have your dog drag a short leash around every time you are home, this way you don’t leash him up before a training session. It also helps in redirecting dogs in real-life situations. Remember, to remove the leash when the dog is unattended.

🐶 practice at different times throughout the day. We all know they can tell time 🤨. Shake up your schedule a bit.

ISCDT – Teaching you to train them

Our 18 week online program is a hands-on program where students are required to work with dogs. Skill and ability is determined through a series of videos submitted to the school. We also offer a 2-week and 4-month in-person internship. To learn more about the courses we offer, visit ISCDT.com

Why Puppies Bark at their Reflection

What do puppies see when they look in the mirror?

Most will see a playmate, while some others view the reflection as a canine intruder. One thing dogs will never understand is that they are looking at THEIR OWN reflection. Their brains are not wired the same way human brains are, meaning unlike us, dogs lack a sense of self.

This behavior is cute at first, but grows old fast. The good news is that your puppy will eventually lose interest in his reflection once he realizes the interaction doesn’t lead to play.

At that point, he will no longer waste energy on the reflection and it will simply become part of the background that he ignores. This is known as habituation.

What is habituation? It is a simple form of learning where after a period of time that an animal is exposed to a stimulus, the animal stops responding. “Sensory systems may stop sending signals to the brain in response to a continuously present or often-repeated stimulus (Cohen et al. 1997).

Until your puppy loses interest, the leave-it command will teach him to stop reacting. Check out the our puppy client in this video. He wants the other dog to chase him.

Want to learn more about dog behavior and how to train a dog professionally? Visit ISCDT.com to enroll in our 18-week interactive dog training program.

Why The Word “No” Rarely Works in Dog Training (and What DOES Work) 

Do you find yourself saying “NO” to your dog, rather than giving commands to stop a behavior?

We are not opposed to using the word no, as long as it is used properly. Here is our philosophy on the word “no”.

Imagine you are at work and make a mistake. Your boss screams “no”, glares at you and walks away. Not only will you never learn the job properly, your nervous anxiety will likely get the best of you. This is true for your dog too.

Help your dogs understand the behavior you want by teaching them commands that get the desired behavior. The word “No” should only be used when the dog doesn’t comply. Even then, it is simply a marker word that signals that they did not complete the command correctly and should try again. Example: Sit….no….sit

ISCDT teaches students how to understand the canine mind before training the dog. You’ll find us at ISCDT.com

How to Console a Grieving Pet Parent without Trivializing Their Loss

Hint: Our pets are much more than animals!

My dog Duke was one of the greatest dogs I’d ever met.  We enjoyed three years together before he succumbed to lung cancer at the age of six.  His first anniversary was this past Monday. I miss him and from time-to-time still feel angry that he was taken so young.  If you have lost a fur baby, you understand my pain.

The emotional roller coaster we ride on after losing a pet careens us  through grief, anger, guilt and sadness. Then we encounter well-meaning comments that are intended to console us, but actually spiral us further into despair.

Below we discuss a few of the most popular condolence messages grieving pet owners receive.

Note: We respect and understand the pain associated with the loss of every species. While this blog article includes all pet owners, our business revolves around canines, so in each example, we use dogs.

Comment:  Be happy it’s just an animal you lost and your family is healthy.  

We have an emotional bond with our animals. They feel our emotions and often respond by cuddling up to us.  In turn, we learn their language and can tell the difference between a bark that alerts us to a stranger and a bark signalling that they want to play, are hungry or hurt. We know when they are frightened, happy or put off. When we plan our daily routine, or a vacation, we factor in the needs of our animals.  We are their nurturer, their caregiver and in return they are our best friend.  Tell me how this relationship differs from relationships with other human beings?  It doesn’t. We simply created a family consisting of members from different species.
Dogs enthusiastically greet us whether we run outside to put the garbage out or return from an eight-hour shift of work.  It is a great feeling to be loved so much. When we are at the lowest point of our lives, we often receive messages from people that read: I wish I could be with you — thinking of you during this time — hugs sent your way — praying for you.  Animals don’t send messages of comfort, because they are always by our side providing comfort.  Animals are the epitome of family. They are not simply a dog, cat, turtle, snake, hedgehog, chicken or  fish. Animals are entwined in our daily life. They are members of our family. It is not fair for another person to rank your loved ones in order of importance. Nor should they assume the pain you feel over the passing of your pet is less painful than Uncle Frankie, who you only see once every year.  Don’t feel bad if you sobbed over your pet, then barely shed a tear for a distant family member. Many times grief over the loss of a pet is more intense than grief over a distant family member or friend.

A better response to your loss:  I am so sorry for the loss of your furry family member.   

“The quality of love, despair and sadness are the same regardless of the object our feelings are directed toward.”  EB, Moonlight Dog Cafe

Ozzy

Comment:  You’re lucky you have other animals. You’ll be fine. It was worse for me because I only had the one.

Each person in your life brings something special to the relationship.  If you’ve formed a bond with this person, they are important to you. This also rings true with our animals. We form a bond with each animal in our home and we love each of them. They are not interchangeable or replaceable.  Each loss hurts, regardless of the number in your furry circle.

A better response:  I hope you and your other pets are able to provide a source of comfort to one another during this tough time.

“The bond with a dog is as lasting as the ties of this earth can ever be.” – Konrad Lorenz

Coconut

Comment:  There are tons of homeless dogs who need homes, go get another one. or

Comment:  Are you going to get another dog?

Imagine losing your partner.  Almost immediately, someone hands you pictures of the reported 7.7 billion people on earth and suggests you pick out your next mate? That’s insane!  Yet people suggest you replace your lost pet in an instant.

Relationships take time to form.  Just ask new puppy owners. Many find the transition  from sharing your life with a loyal, well-behaved dog to a puppy, challenging.  Not only do people handle the grieving process differently, every situation is different.  I found Elsa two weeks after losing my boxer Madison. The moment I saw Elsa’s picture, I knew she belonged with me.  Four months later we adopted her. Yet, it’s been a year since Duke died and we have yet to welcome another dog. While I have thought about adopting a few, it never felt right.  Not because Duke meant more to us than Madison did. Our situation is different and this time, we just aren’t ready.  

A better response:  You gave your furry friend a fabulous life.  He was one lucky dog.

“Until one has loved an animal, a part of one’s soul remains unawakened.” – Anatole France

Sage

Comment:  He was old and sick.  He’s better off. 
I am actually afraid to celebrate birthdays or admit illness around these people, for fear they will dig my grave without thinking twice.  It doesn’t matter if your pet dies unexpectedly or you’ve had six months to prepare. Nor does it matter if he is six months or sixteen years.  It hurts to lose a loved one. We understand animals feel pain and their bodies become too tired to continue. That is why we often face tough choices at the end.  While our fur baby may finally be at peace, we are hurting without our beloved pet.

A better response: I am so sorry for your loss and here if you need someone to speak to.

“Death leaves a heartache no one can heal, love leaves a memory no one can steal.” – From an Irish Headstone

Question:  You’re still grieving over your pet?

Grief may change and lessen as time goes on, however, there is no switch that shuts grief down after a predetermined amount of time, despite what some outdated medical books may indicate.  You may be fine for months and then something triggers sadness. When someone questions your grief, understand you are not wrong in feeling blue, rather they are likely struggling to handle sadness and don’t know how to help you. [Tom Golden – Quora]  There are support groups, grieving counselors and therapists if you need to talk. There is absolutely nothing wrong with seeking help from a professional following the death of a pet.

People grieve differently.   Some adopt a new pet quickly, while others take months or years to even look at another dog. Some are grateful for the time with their pet, while others find it difficult to function without them.  Grieving is a personal and private process. No one has the right to set a time limit for you to adhere to.

Better response:  None. Don’t talk. Just listen.

“Grief is like the ocean; it comes in waves, ebbing and flowing. Sometimes the water is calm, and sometimes it is overwhelming. All we can do is learn to swim.” – Vicki Harrison

Coty and Precious

On a final note, animals do not fear death. Dogs will hold on to life if they fear you need them to remain by your side.  [dogsnaturally] No matter how hard it is, allowing our beloved animals to leave their sick and broken bodies is the ultimate gift of love. Never regret your decision to let them go.  Don’t second guess yourself or replay the past wishing you’d made different choices concerning your pet. You loved your dog and he/she loved you more.  Now they thank you for letting them go.  Hold on to their memories and revel in the times you shared together. You are not alone in your grief.  You are among other loving pet parents, you just need to seek us out.

Check back for our continued feature on losing your best friend.  We’ll discuss ways to overcome your grief* and how to help your other animals overcome grief.

*Seek help from a medical professional if you cannot overcome grief or have suicidal thoughts.  
Quotes:  Puppyleaks.com