Tag Archives: dog owner

Guest Blog: Is Reiki Energy Healing Right for Your Dog?

Dogs are mindful, spiritual beings who generously give of themselves to the lives of their humans. If you appreciate the beauty of nature and animals or share your life with companion animals, you already appreciate this priceless, unconditional love. Many dog lovers believe the relationship with their canines is based on a pure, spiritual connection creating deep, long-lasting bonds. Reiki can help promote those closer bonds.

Unfortunately, just like their humans, dogs can also suffer from physical and emotional issues. This is especially true if an animal has suffered a difficult or traumatic experience; came from not-so-ideal circumstances or is struggling with grief, abuse or fear of humans.K9 stress may also occur due to:

  • A restricted or unnatural lifestyle like overbreeding;
  • Boredom and a lack of regular exercise or mental stimulation; and
  • An improper diet.

Any of these situations can produce an unhappy, unhealthy and stressed dog. Reiki can help promote healing and the ultimate return to health.

What is Reiki?

The word “Reiki” comes from the Japanese terms “higher power” and “life force energy.” Reiki is a non-invasive, respect-based and meditative energy healing practice. It was traditionally used in human circles for spiritual healing, stress relief and self-improvement. For generations, people have benefited from the peace, relaxation and healing shifts that come from a Reiki session.

But energy healing is not just for people. Reiki can also be a simple, yet powerful form of energy healing for enhancing calm and well-being in your canine companion while creating and fostering a closer bond with them.

Originally designed for use in shelters and sanctuaries to calm its stressed and anxious residents, Reiki has evolved into an effective tool to calm an upset dog as well as assist an ill or injured one. Regular sessions of Reiki may also help keep long-term, chronic diseases, disorders or pain in check and even help lessen the severity of the symptoms.

Hands-On or Hands-Off Reiki?

Reiki energy healing can be done in one of two ways: hands-on or hands-off (over distance). The hands-on approach is generally more effective if the dog enjoys being touched. In cases where the dog does not tolerate physical touching (for reasons ranging from medical to psychological), distance – or hands-off – Reiki may be a better option.

Most dogs enjoy the calming, soothing and healing energies employed by a skilled Reiki practitioner. Some dogs cannot get close enough during a session and may actually lean into the practitioner or even end up fast asleep in their lap.

For dogs in high-stress situations (such as shelters or when being transported for adoption or veterinary purposes), distance reiki usually works better. It can also used for K9s who do not live near their Reiki practitioner or who are in hospice.

Reiki works well with most animals because they are naturally open and receptive to energy. They naturally understand and respond to the flow of energy and tend to heal more quickly than people since they are not prone to mental blocks or defense mechanisms that can block the flow of healing energy.

What to Expect

Sessions can run from 20-60 minutes, depending on the dog and their willingness to staying still for an extended period of time. The greatest benefits from Reiki are achieved with regular sessions (weekly, bi-weekly or monthly) determined by each individual dog and the level of healing they require.

Many pet parents report positive effects in their dog’s general health and disposition with the use of Reiki. Feedback from others have offered hope in the reduction of chronic pain and even the possible reversal or remission of severe medical issues.


However, please remember that Reiki is not a replacement for routine veterinary care, or a reason to disregard needed medications or medical procedures.


Reiki offers a non-invasive energy healing suitable for any dog and condition. It will not interfere or contraindicate with any regular veterinary care and serves as a useful tool in helping your dog with physical or psychological issues. Please keep in mind that even in healing sessions for ailing animals, it may only ease an inevitable passing. Reiki is powerful, however, it is not a perfect cure-all. Ultimately, it is always the animal guardian’s decision regarding what level of care to seek including which modalities.

When approached with an open mind and heart, Reiki energy healing for your dog may offer a healthier, calmer and happier life.


Meet our Guest Blogger:

Raven Hannah is a self-described animal whisperer, lifelong pet parent, and owner of HolisticPetsAndPeeps.com. She is certified as a holistic consultant, aromatherapist, Reiki practitioner (for animals and people), and pet nutritionist. She encourages others to celebrate animals as part of the family, as well as keep them happy, healthy, and spoiled! When Raven isn’t busy being a slave to her very demanding senior cats or helping her favorite rescues with fundraising projects, she is most likely working on growing her businesses and raising awareness in an effort to make this world a better place for all creatures.


 

K9 Etiquette in Public: 101


Dog ownership is a popular way of life in the United States. With an estimated 89.7 million dogs owned (as of 2017 according to American Pet Products Association (APPA)), chances are you have seen plenty of dogs out with their owners in public. Some of them are well-behaved and unfortunately, some are not. If you enjoy bringing your pooch to dog-friendly public places and businesses, make sure they earn a good reputation! Below are a few ideas on how to practice good doggie etiquette.

Know Local Regulations 

In many places, keeping your dog on a leash while you’re in public isn’t just good manners – it’s the law. A good leash (including retractable ones) should be long enough to allow your dog some freedom while you walk, but not so much that you lose control. Leashes also help let others know you are in control – many people will become uncomfortable if an unleashed dog is running toward them.

Safety

As you walk your dog, keep safety at the forefront of your mind. Use sidewalks if they are available; if not, always walk on the left side of road, facing traffic. If you are walking around daybreak or dusk, bring a flashlight and/or wear reflective clothing so you stay easily visible. Remember, darkness can fall quickly in the winter months so be prepared. Also make sure your dog is wearing identification tags so you can get him back in case he gets away from you.

Personal Space and Training

Make sure your dog maintains a respectful distance from other people when you are in public. Many people are afraid of dogs and others don’t want to be bothered or licked. It’s also important to realize that not all dogs you meet in public are friendly and letting your dog run up to them can cause negative reactions and possibly even a fight.

A leash is the best way to control your dog’s behavior coupled with training some basic voice commands. The basic commands should include:

  • sit;
  • stay;
  • heel;
  • leave it; and
  • come.

It’s fairly easy to teach these basic commands using your dog’s favorite treats. For example, to train your dog to sit, hold a treat by his nose and slowly raise your hand up, which will cause his head to come up and his bottom to go down. Once he is in a sitting position (and holding it for a few seconds), say “sit” and give him the treat, along with some affection. Repeat until he can do it on command consistently (each dog learns differently, so be patient). You can follow the same basic procedure for other commands as well. If you want some help with training these basic commands, research training methods, attend an obedience class or hire a dog trainer for one-on-one training.

Waste Patrol

This is pretty simple – always scoop your dog’s poop. It’s a good idea to bring extra plastic baggies every time you go out to make sure you have enough. Letting your dog urinate in public is fine, but don’t let them go on anything a human might touch – flower beds, mailboxes, trash cans, etc. Your neighbors will appreciate it if you keep your dog from peeing on their lawns as well.

Be Aware

No matter what happens when you’re out with your dog, be aware of others around you. Know when your dog might do something inappropriate and always be ready to head him off. If you can’t stop him, at least acknowledge the issues and explain that you will take care of the problem. Sometimes, a simple apology or acknowledgement goes a long way toward defusing a potentially difficult situation.

If you are like many dog owners, you want to have your dog out in public with you as much as possible. Remember that good pet etiquette starts with owners (that’s you), so make sure you are committed to keeping your dog’s behavior within the bounds of acceptable social behavior. Follow the tips above and you’ll be able to enjoy years of socialization and fun with your dog.

 


Meet our Guest Blogger:

Jessica Brody is an avid dog lover and passionate advocate for rescue pets. She created OurBestFriends.pet to offer an online place for animal lovers to share their favorite pet photos and stories about their furry pals. Jessica believes dogs are the best creatures on earth and enjoys writing about and sharing photos of dogs (and other pets!) on her website.


 

Be the BEST First-Time Dog Owner!


Are you getting a dog for the first time in your life?

What can you expect? How should you prepare?

Be the best first-time dog owner with the tips below!

 

It’s important to get the right type of dog. Emotions can run wild when you start your search (especially with those huge puppy eyes!), but before you commit yourself to a particular breed, do some research first.

 

Things to Consider before Adopting a Dog

Considering a big or even giant-breed dog? Without proper training, they can be difficult to restrain even on a leash and transport. Active breeds like Shepherds, Labs, Weimaraners, Huskies and any Sporting, Working, Hunting or Herding dogs all need a great deal of exercise, especially in the first five years of their lives. (Be prepared to walk them for at least an hour a day, maybe more.) Without proper exercise and training on a daily basis, large dogs can quickly become unmanageable and exhibit a variety of behavioral problems. With that being said, big dogs may work out really well for runners and frisbee enthusiasts as most have greater endurance than smaller breeds.

Even if you have a fenced-in yard, your dog will still require regular and adequate exercise and socialization.

Do you suffer from allergies? If you do, you may also be allergic to dogs. If you are, you will need to take that into consideration when choosing a dog. If you have your heart set on getting a dog, consider breeds that shed very little, like Poodles and Portuguese water dogs (like the First Dog, Bo).

Another important consideration is the size and nature of your home. If you are renting, for instance, you need to check with your landlord first about what kind of dog, if any, is allowed. Many landlords will allow small dogs, but not the larger breeds. Before adopting a Pitbull or Staffordshire Terrier, check your local ordinances for any breed restrictions in your community. Denver and Miami, for instance, still outlaw Pitbulls and even dogs that look like them.

Also, keep in mind that many landlords today require pet deposits or even monthly “pet rent” if you have a dog in the residence.

Consider rescue first. According to the ASPCA, animal shelters take in 7.6 million dogs and cats each year. Unfortunately, only 2.7 million are adopted each year. When you adopt a rescue or shelter dog, you are saving two lives; the dog you adopt and the dog who will take his now-available place.

Still not sure what breed is right for you? Take this quick quiz at Dogtime.com and find out in just 21 quick questions!

 

Preparing Your Home for Your New Dog

Before bringing Fido into your home, review it relative to the safety of your dog and your belongings. Keep in mind that happy dog tails can be disastrous to fragile knick-knacks, plants and more. Relocate such items to out-of-reach shelves or protected cabinets for your dog’s safety. Also keep food, candy and potential poisonous plants out of reach of inquisitive noses and mouths.

Also buy a comfy (and easy-to-clean) dog bed and/or dog crate that will become your dog’s comfort zone. Dog crates are wonderful training tools for both puppies and older dogs; it gives them a “safe place” to go when they get tired or are overwhelmed.

 

You’ll also need a collar, leash or harness, dog bowls, dog toys to keep your dog busy (and distracted from inappropriate chewing) and a well-formulated dog food. Local experts can help you make the best, well-informed choices.

Bonding with Your Dog

Congratulations! You’ve done your homework and found the best breed for you and your lifestyle and have prepared your home for the new four-legged arrival!

Remember, your dog will need a period of adjustment after you adopt him and bring him home.

Patience will help make the adjustment easier and facilitate a stronger bond.

Dogs may cry, bark or whine a lot their first few days in a new place. They may want to hide in closets or under the bed. Food may be a great motivator when it comes  to helping your K9 adjust more easily (or a toy depending on your dog’s preference). Put the food (or toy) within sight and smell of your new dog; but not in their hiding spot. When he comes out to eat (or play), praise him. If he lets you, give him some reassuring pats. Before long, your dog will begin to trust both you and his surroundings. Daily brushing can also help build trust.

Make sure to walk your new dog around the neighborhood and let him get used to the new sights, smells and sounds. Introduce him to new people and dogs of all sizes. This helps build their confidence. Take your time and never force your dog to do something he seems uncomfortable in doing.

Invest in dog training! Not only will this enhance your bond with your dog, but it will also help head off or address any bad habits or negative behaviors. Dog classes or one-on-one training are both beneficial.

 

Dog ownership is, without a doubt, one of the greatest joys of life. Whether you are bringing home a new puppy or an older dog, you will enjoy many years of unconditional love by following these tips.

 

Photos By Pixabay.


Meet our Guest Blogger:

Jessica Brody is an avid dog lover and passionate advocate for rescue pets. She created OurBestFriends.pet to offer an online place for animal lovers to share their favorite pet photos and stories about their furry pals. Jessica believes dogs are the best creatures on earth and enjoys writing about and sharing photos of dogs (and other pets!) on her website.