New Year’s Resolution: To Become More Like My Dogs

I really don’t like New Year’s Resolutions because, I think, once we make them we don’t usually adhere to them.  A poll taken in 2007 showed that 78% of those who set New Year’s Resolutions fail.

This year I thought long and hard about it, who can resist a small New Year’s Resolution?   I am pretty confident with whom I am and what I do, but I wondered what would make me a better person?  And, I came to the conclusion I would be a better person if I was more like my dog(s).  That’s right!  I want to be more like my four legged family members and less like the two legged variety.

Let us review some of the traits I would like to better embody.

Some Days I could Use More of This!

  • Innocence:  Dogs are innocent, like small children.  Even when they make mistakes, they are never made with spite in mind.  I miss the innocence of childhood!
  • Vulnerability:  Dogs are vulnerable; they need us and are happy to rely on us humans for their needs.  We all need help sometimes, even though it is hard to admit.
  • Kindness:  Our dogs are always kind no matter what mood we are in.  How often are we short tempered?
  • Gracious:  My dog never asks me for the new, better dog toy, he is happy with whatever I give him!  We should be thankful for what we have!
  • Forgiving:  It doesn’t matter if you just trimmed a nail a little too close or met your dog with a harsh word; he will always forgive you and meet you with a soft kiss and a happy tail wag.  I definitely need to be more forgiving. 
  • Happiness: No matter what is going on in your life, your dog is probably always happy!  I, some days, wish I was as happy as my dog!

    To be as Happy and Full of Energy and Play as These Guys!

  • Trusting:  No matter what you do to him, he will always trust you.  Wouldn’t it be nice to trust in the goodness most people, instead of opposite?
  • Humility:  My dog never brags, even when he should!  Humility is a great quality.
  • Teachable:  He is always willing to learn, it never matters how late at night, or how early in the morning or if I change my mind, my dogs are always anxious to learn and do something new!  They love change!  I wish I was as anxious and happy to learn and change!

Go to a dog park or just sit and watch a group of dogs; watch how they play.   They live in the present, not in the past or the future.  They know nothing of money or bills, or being “cool”.  Dogs lose themselves in the moment.  They are happy to play with anyone and everyone, looks, abilities or disabilities matter not to your dog.

Play with your dog and watch his eyes light up in happiness as you lose yourself in games, joy and playfulness!

Dogs are curious about everyone and everything; they really do stop and smell the roses (and other things) 😉

A dog sees meaning in everything and does not judge from past experience.  Everyone and everything gets a clean slate!

Join Me, and Find the Joy in Your Dog’s Life!

I want to take the opportunity to see the world with new eyes, to see the miracles and fascination that is around every corner.

I want to be kind to everyone and not judge on looks or the superficial garbage we humans see first.

I want to be trusting, happy, teachable and most of all forgiving.

How wonderful a world would we live in if we could forgive each other like our dogs forgive us for our trespasses?

I want to lose myself in play!  I would like to go outside run around, jump, slide, climb, kick a ball and just find solace in good old fashioned playtime!

But most of all, I would like to be the person my dog thinks I am!  Because if you were to ask him, or her, or him…they would tell you I am the best person on earth!  And, for that adoration, I will try to do my best to become just a smidgeon more like them this year!

I know they will always welcome me with a warm heart, a warm nose and a comforting snuggle whenever and wherever I need it!

What is your dog’s best quality?   What can you learn from your dog?

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  1. Cindy McDowell says:

    I have a Yorkie named Led. After a long hard day a work,he brings a smile to my face. The little kisses he gives are so sweet and makes me realize how lucky i am to have him in my life, Puppy kisses could change the world, if everybody could get one when they got home.


  2. Kristine says:

    What couldn’t I learn from my dog to be a better person. She was hit by a car 11/18/11…got a spine and back leg femur fracture. She was given a less than 5% chance of ever walking and one vet was pretty much promoting euthanasia. I’m sorry but hell to the no…she is a puggle with the heart and spirit like no other and is just stubborn enough to be a miracle. She was only 7months old and there was no way I was giving up on her. Now, nearly 1.5 months later, she is pushing up on her back legs and starting to try to take steps…5% my butt. I can’t wait for the day she walks into vet on her own. Besides the one vet, everyone else fell in love with her and took amazing care while in the ICU. Anyway..lesson learned from my girl? When it comes to life: good and bad, approach with heart, spirit on fire, and show the odds who is boss. Don’t give up. Love and support unconditionally. Fight. Lastly, when feeling down, look at those less fortunate, like my maddie who acts as if there is no problem and is happy anyway, and get a big reality check.
    Madison Jane, my puggle, is a miracle…whether she ever walks again or not, she is My hero!





    Christine Peters Reply:

    Good for you for sticking with your dog. I also have a puggle and she is so loving and loyal. Best of luck with your dog’s progress


  3. I am a Chihuahua Breeder, I would have to say that Tucker man and Little Miss Blue Bell are my life savers. Every night when I get home from work they great me at the door jump up into my arms they follow me into the bath room and give me kisses Blue Bell jumps into the shower with me she is my water baby. and Tucker give’s the best hugs and kisses I have ever received. And I mean ever even better than any man I have hugged or kissed he saved my life when I was ready to give up and die but he showed me I still had a lot of love to receive and to give


  4. stephen Nyam says:

    I am whole heartedly in agreement with the distinguish qualities of a dog listed
    above. I have a 45kg Rottie/4yrs old name “Kaiser” that has it all but sadly I do not have it all. I am shot tempered, impatient, not easily forgiving and full of worries….. Nevetheless my bonding with ‘Kaiser’ is where I find peace
    of mind when I am with him for the daily walk in the park, share an apple with him and talk to him about almost anything. The welcome home ‘Bark’ is loud and
    sweet to my ears the moment I am out of my car.

    He makes my day in the morning waiting for me to hug him before I leave for office and never ask for more and the looks on face tells me, he is always
    waiting for me no matter what time I reached home.


  5. Sue says:

    I have a mastiff even though she drives me crazy getting up at 1a to walk her (she is 14 weeks old) I love her to pieces… and she does bring that smile to my face…..


  6. sandra liu says:

    My one year old Border Collie, will wait for me anxiously. But if I come back with a box of food, he is so fast to swift his attention. Other than this, all the qualities mentioned, he has that.


  7. Mary says:

    This is a lovely article; so many of us can learn from our dogs and really we have still no idea how intelligent they are or what they’re truly capable of. My collie is an ever ready listening ear for my woes.. and endlessly devoted. Would that many of us humans could be so faithful and simple in our approach to each other.


  8. Theress Ammons says:

    I have a Morky by the name of Lily. She was given to me as a combination Christmas/Birthday present from my children in 2010. She has been one of the best presents I could ever receive. She is a little hyper, but I can tolerate that because of the unconditional love she gives me every day. She will usually follow me every where I go in the house, just like my little shadow. My life is so much better now that I have her to enjoy it.


  9. Glyn says:

    my wife and I also have a yorkshire terrier, and he is an absolute champion. He is so friendly to all people. when out for a walk when he see’s another person he has to go to them hoping for a pat or a nice word.
    He actually cries to get to them. loves to be cuddled, spoilt, ruined.
    call it whatyou like but he makes us very happy we are very lucky to have him. His name is Oliver, mostly called Ollie.


  10. Bev Comer says:

    I have a 7 year old Aussie named Slinger who thinks I am the world’s BEST “hunter/gatherer”. When I come home from the grocry store with all those wonderful bags of wonderful smells….he sticks his head in every bag, then looks at me with a face that is soooooo FULL of amazement!!

    To get excited about something as dull as groceries….he’s my sparkle in an ordinary world…..maybe we can get excited about the POSSIBILITIES that come to us in ordinary ways.


  11. Borrowed from a friend;

    I would love to be the person that my dog thinks I am.


    Norma DeAngelis Reply:

    Wow…that is so poignant! What a statement! I,too, would love to be the person my dogs thinksI am! Thank you for that!


  12. Betty Lou Kishler says:

    I have two chihuahuas. One is 17 lbs. and the other 10 lbs. They are 1/2 brothers born 2 months apart. They are now 6 years old. They are runners just like the greyhound I had before them. The only diffeence was Brindi, my geyhound, ran up the mountain and ran down in 15 seconds and then became a couch potato the rest of the day. These two chihuahuas go for walks with us off the leash and just run and run and run. They never seem out of breath.
    When I say, “I’m going to take a nap,” they are right up there with me on the sofa. I love them both.


  13. toni woodhull says:

    I have a 3 month schauner puppy named Nikki. He is a hand full with joy and deturmation. He is all wiggles when I come home from work.but when he gets into my arms and lays down just happy to be with me. The hard days troubles just go away. And its all love. Wouldn’t it be great if everything could be so good.


  14. Susan Dias says:

    I love everything about my dog Zoe…She flies well in a plane…sleeps well in a car…sleeps when I sleep…plays when I play.She is always ready to do nothing or everything.She loves all animals and people…cautious around big dogs but will give them a chance…She visits the sick in the hospital and those in nursing homes. She brings a smile to everyone who meets her. She walks like a show dog with such enthusiasm!I am a lucky girl!


  15. Susan says:

    I just plain love my dog Bear. He is a wonderful loving dog and he is always looking for affection. He’s a 4 month old lab and when he comes to me to snuggle his fur is so soft I love to put my face on his head. and in return I get a sloppy kiss.He just makes my day when we wake in the morning he is right beside of me greeting me with kisses. what a way to start a day with a dog that you love and he loves you.


  16. dawn lane says:

    My three dogs – a bassett, a pugwawa and a very ancient long haired dachshund are ones I couldn’t live without. I can sob into their fur and get slurpy kisses in return. They snuggle up and keep me warm when I have a cold and they never complain if I drag them out in all weathers for walkies. They share my taste in watching certain television programes, but their own taste in dvds run to Top Bone, Hound of Music, Puppy Love, The Beagle has landed and Pup Fiction.

    They enjoy a soothing spell of Poochini once in a while, but in their more head banging moments, they tend to shake a leg to McFlea, Bonio. Muttilica and Bone Jovi.

    They are, without a shadow of doubt, my bestest friends.


    Erika Beckers Reply:

    They are without a doubd my best friends!!

    Dawn you are so right. I too have three dogs, Romeo a German Shepherd Dog, Doobie a Shepherd/Colly Mix and Philip a Maltese.
    I am not as beautiful than a Movy Star – my dogs love me how I am, and we have a lot fun with each other. They are my best companien and friends. They play together so nicely, it is a joy to watch. I am retired but I never feel lonesome.
    One of the nicest things is they love you so, that is real!


  17. Beth Moore says:

    What a wonderfully endearing read! This world would be a much better place if we, like Minette, chose to learn and pattern our lives around the examples our dogs set for us. Forgiving, do not hold grudges [accidentally step on their tail and they will immediately give us a kiss as if saying “I know you didn’t mean it] loving, comforting [particularly if you are under the weather], faithful, always there for you, sensitive to our frame of mind, and yes, providing protection [particularly if one is a widow living alone] and security ~ there is nothing like a big bark to deter anyone with less that good intention**. Who has seen a burglar alarm that will give its all for your safety? It makes me realize how blessed I am with my dog and how I can improve my lifestyle in the coming year. ** I once had an experience while sitting at a stop light when a rather unsavory-in-appearance man came up to my passenger door, opened it and proceeded to get it. My dog, bless her German Shepherd heart got up from the back seat and told him in no uncertain terms he was not welcome. He slammed the door and as I tried to get a better look at him to report the incident, he disappeared in a laneway. NOTE ~ I do not like traveling with my doors locked as I want immediate access to my dog should I ever have the misfortune to be involved in an accident ….. Thank you, Minette, for a thought provoking article.


  18. Karleen says:

    What a great topic and perfect New Year’s resolution. I love it. My lab/pit mix is one of the most intelligent dogs I’ve ever been around. She reads me like a book. She watches my face a lot more than any of my other dogs, past or present and is very obvious in “telling” me what she wants. She will look at something in the direction I point, whereas other dogs will just look at my finger. I swear she understands almost everything I say.

    I guess I would have to say her most enduring quality is her desire to please me and of course her happiness. I, too, would love to be more like the person my dog thinks I am.

    I would also like to live in the moment more, rather than worrying about finances, weight loss, what to wear, etc.

    Thanks for the great post!


  19. Theresa Orchard says:




  20. Debbie Koop says:

    Even people who are not dog lovers could benefit following the personalities of our best friends. This is a great message for a few things some of may not have thought much about and would make us all more enjoyable to be around. No matter what kind of day I’ve had, my dog can put a smile on my face,,, even when he’s bad he’s innocent just searching for a new way to get human attention. If he stole your glove he’ll return it, because, after all…. “I only wanted you to call my name cause then I know you didn’t forget me!”
    He protects me at night, by my side through the day and always has a smile to share.
    Yes, I wish I were the person my dog thinks I am.


  21. ellen says:

    My two year old corgi had a bad start in life, but has managed to turn her mistreatment into my blessings. She has converted her early trials into the patience and gentle manner of a saint, which I am struggling mightily to develop for myself. She is a wonderful role model!


  22. Dixie DeRoshia says:

    The enthusiasm my dog,Missy displays for (every)thing/one that happens to come into her life. She is so eager to share herself with others and cares for dogs who are less fortunate than she. From puppies to adult dogs she is the beacon of light that leads them to enjoyment and security. There is no pre-judgment of anyone and she shows me how much work I have to do on myself to achieve even a smidgen of her happpiness.


  23. Eileen says:

    A yoga teacher remarked that dogs make better humans than do humans; they do for all the reasons Minette listed in her blog post. My New Year’s resolution, assuming I had one is to be more like my dog: unconditional love, live by the moment and get out of my linear brain so I can enjoy all that the world offers, just like my dog does.

    If everybody lived by those principles, events triggered by greed, whether a water war or a subprime mortgage would be things of the past. Don’t get me wrong-we would still have Wall St and huge hedge funds as capitalism can’t function without a stock market. What we wouldn’t have are institutions gambling and taking excessive risks just for the sake of a big bank account.

    Dogs can teach us a lot about enjoying the world because it’s there and going in peace when it’s time to go. Such a life leads to a peaceful contented existence, which is all I want out of the rest of my life.


    Ken Reply:

    Very thought-provoking.
    I did have to wonder, “If everybody lived by those principles” would we have “capitalism?”
    Don’t get me wrong, I don’t agree with communism either.

    Certainly can agree with “unconditional love, live by the moment and GET OUT OF MY LINEAR BRAIN” 🙂 “so I can enjoy all that the world offers, just like my dog does.”


  24. Connie Carr says:

    I too would like to be the person your dog thinks I am. However someone has to take care of the mundane things in life such as paying the bills, etc. It’s a dirty job but someone has to do it.
    I’m wondering if my dog is depressed. She just lays around all the time. She gives affection to new arrivals but not much to me. It almost makes me jealous. It’s like she is punishing me. Is this the personality of a Cairn Terrier? I have never had a dog who is so quiet. When we travel, if she is in the back seat I completely forget she is there. She never barks unless someone is in the yard(be it animal or human). My friends’ dogs are much more active. Do you think I am expecting too much and worrying about nothing? Any advice would be appreciated.


  25. Jayme says:

    I have been priviledged to be owned by some wonderful dogs, but Caraigh was the very best. She was a rescue and had seven owners by the time she was six years old. She was a skinny rottie, shy and scared but when she was outside she ran and laughed. She never knew what a toy was or what it felt like to be clean or to have enough food, and yet she had the biggest heart of anyone or anything. She was almost always quiet in the house and tried not to take up space and yet her heart filled the entire house. I could not be lonely or sad when she was around.
    To be that loving and kind after so much misery is a miracle to me.
    The first trip to the vets took four of us to hold her down just to get her examined. But after a few years she greeted the vet with hugs and kisses on the hand. She blossomed into the most kind, loving, obedient, gentle dog anyone could possibly asked to have. To have that faith and heart is a blessing. The house is empty now, but the example she left me and the love I felt from her will live on inside my heart.


  26. Maxine says:

    My Min Pin is rhe best friend I have; always ready to listen to my problems and joys. He doesn’t judge me or my decisions. His happy nature is catching, and I find myself smiling. He helps fill my day with some light labors: he has never been housebroken, although I’m still working with him (he’s six years olfe). But at night when he tells me it’s bedtime we crawl into bed together and he warms me, he keeps one eye open and to watch for intruders so I feel safe. He adds so much to my life it’s hard to complain too much about his short comings.


  27. Debbie says:

    Sometimes life can hold challenges for all of us….. but the people I meet, the more I like my dogs… Sometimes


  28. Hannora says:

    Our dog is only 7 months old. We got him because we nursed two sick dogs for a long time, and needed a healthy pup to help us get over our grieving. We even named him after our last dog, but as a II.
    He seemed from the beginning to know he was helping us to get over our loss and immediately became the best dog ever!
    He is so good, smart, caring, energetic and loving. Toilet and cage trained as soon as we showed him what we wanted, never cried, always there.
    He is loved to bits, and easy to train as he is so clever. Knows lots of words already. He is walked twice a day, goes with us everywhere, is loved by all he meets.
    He even made friends with our cat, who never got close to our previous dogs.
    Bless him. We wish we were more like him.


  29. Judi Zarecki says:

    I have 4 toypoodles,daddy,mama,her very first born little boy and her last girl.They are very intellegent,loveable and very adorable.They each have their own personalities and really bring them out.When I return home I walk into exciteable and eager to greet me with their kisses.When I lay down in bed they each have a place of their own and know just where to lay.They love to cuddle next to me.And when I play with them they just love it.I groom each one and as a reward they get their favorite treat (pupperoni).They also have different treats throughout the day but certianly know their favorite.I can’t mention it,I have to spell it out when I speak of it to someone around.Not to say I have them so spoiled and will do everything I can for them.They have changed my life so much and for the better.They bring me such joy and happiness and don’t know what I’d do without them.Their my babies and pride and joy.And they love to dance.So to all you dog lovers cherish what time you have with them and they’ll bring you a millionfold.I love my babies and wouldn’t give them up for nothing their Gods little angels.


  30. Hugh says:

    I learned an important social skill from a dog — I was at a gathering of people I didn’t know, and some of them didn’t know each other. Somebody brought a dog, and that dog went all around the room, vigorously greeting every person. I thought “Wow, that’s the way to overcome the awkward situation when you don’t know people, and nobody breaks the ice or introduces you! Greet everybody immediately and vigorously.”


  31. Wanda Mitchell says:

    We have been blessed with the absolute best dog in the world. We adopted Chasworth, (Chaz) a charcoal gray poodle from the Collin County Humane Society here in Dallas. We were told that he lived on the street the first 18 months of his life. He has some separation issues, but he’s getting better. Chaz loves to walk, run (looks like a race horse) play, and snuggle. He’s always glad to see us, and he’s always grateful for every little thing we do. He trusts and loves us unconditionally. Sometimes I’d swear he’s a “People with hair”.:) If I’m testy, or even a little sad, he climbs up on the couch or chair, lays his head in our laps until he feels we’re better. He is absolutely a gift from God and I’m so grateful for him. He ruptured a disc in his back and was paralyzed last May. They said he might not walk for about a month, and if he didn’t they would measure him for a cart! I THINK NOT!! We prayed, and asked everyone we knew to pray, and he walked in 2 days! This is a lesson about the courage and sweet demeanor of Chaz, but even more so about the goodness of God! He is able to do much more than we can ask or think! Everybody be blessed!


    Denise Cleghorn Reply:


    I too agree with prayer. We have a Greater Swiss Mountain, Mikey, who also has a ruptured disc in his back. Mikey is very large, 150 lbs. He couldn’t even get off the floor. We had the vet tech here to help us get him to their office.

    He is now on Predizone and neuropathic medicine along with pain killers. The vet was thinking there was no hope for Mikey.

    After three days Mikey was up and about. We also had everyone we knew praying for his healing. God is so amazing!!

    Now we are going to continue using the neuropathic medicine and see how Mikey does.

    All of our dogs are blessings to us.

    We have 4 other dogs. Part Bull, Boxer, and Mountain Curs. Shep, Sheilla, Bruizer, and Bandit. Bruizer and Bandit are only four months old and have such great personalities! And, they sure have learned the habits of our other dogs.

    We also have a beautiful cat, Zach! He is a joy. Very loveable! And, he gets along well with the dogs. It’s so cute to see Zach tease the other!

    I too agree we should all learn better habits from our dogs!

    May God Bless You,



  32. Ina Ellsworth says:

    Minette, you are a wonderful lady!

    I would add two qualities to your list : loyalty and patience!!! And I don’t think dogs know how to carry a grudge!


  33. Julie says:

    I am the grateful mom to a precious, sweet, joyful, loving little long-haired Chihuahua. She’s my angel, my heart, my cheer leader, my cozy bed bunny, my prancing leash walker and one of the best people I’ve ever known. I am SO lucky and I am SO thankful.


  34. Helen Duberstein says:

    I think my wirehair dachshund is just so funny looking and doesn’t know it because everyone oohs and ahhs over him and says he is so cute and he believes it as he jumps with joy! He is so sweet and gentle as he rests his little paw on my arm or props his heed on a pillow so he can look me right adoringly in the eyes. I adore him right back. He enjoys his life and teaches me to enjoy mine.


  35. Joann says:

    I have a nine year old Jack/Chi.From the day I got him,he has,shown me unconditional love.
    He loves me and everyone he meets.Always stopping to say hello and give kisses.
    His expressions are priceless.People who say they are not dog people like Jackie.
    Over these years he has been there through all of my roughest moments.
    All of my heartaches and moving.Never complaining or showing disgust.
    He prances like he did when he was a puppy and smiles when he is really happy.
    I do all I can for him.I nursed him through two back isssues with his discs.Picking him
    up when he was in too much pain to walk.
    In the winter on our morning walk,we can’t avoid ice melt.When his little feet freeze
    up I will pick him up.Apartment life is not perfect for a dog,even small ones,but
    I know he is earm,fed and not abused.
    Thank God we were introduced.Jackie is my best little man.
    I could go on.


  36. Judi Zarecki says:

    I have 4 toypoodles and they each are loveable ,adorable and very intellegent.They have their own personallities,and really show them.When I come home I greet greeted with over whelming excitement and kisses,kisses, kisses.They love sleeping with me and each one has their own place in the bed.They love to cuddle up to me and know they are loved.When I groom each one their rewarded with their favorite treat (pupperoni).I have to spell it out when I speak to someone about it,cause their so smart and understand what I’m saying.They have other treats throughout the day but certainly know the difference.I spoil them cause they are loved so much and I don’t know what I’d do without them.They are my pride and joy.


  37. Dianne says:

    Dogs are so wonderful it’s hard to put into words. So glad there are so many people that love their dogs to the extent of the people here. My dogs have always been one of the best things in my life. There is very little I wouldn’t do to keep them happy. I would like to be like any of the dogs I have loved except for my little springer spaniel that had a bad jealous streak. That was her only fault, she was great in every other way. I guess they can’t all be perfect. God bless all you dog lovers. Happy New Year!


  38. Carolyn says:

    I have 3 dogs, all Gordon Setters and their enthusiasm for life knows no bounds. They are also very loving and despite their size still think a cuddle on a knee is the best thing.I feel sorry for people who dont like dogs they miss so much that is good. Enjoy their company and continue to appreciate your dogs.


  39. anne says:

    thank you for such a beautiful, uplifting article!


  40. Carolyn says:

    We have a male dachshund named TD. His story of rescue is too long to add,
    but very compelling. He loves all people and cannot understand when they
    are not eager to have him jump up on them or lucky enough to get his sweet
    kisses. We have had him for about six years and every day has been a joy.
    He does not have a mean bone in his squattie little body but loves to
    bark and warn all the varmints to stay away. We know God had a hand in
    sending him to us and we will forever be grateful for this gift. We enjoyed reading all these special messages from so many dog lover.


  41. Mary says:

    My dog Katie, a gorgeous Golden Retriever, was given to me by a relative that I knew very little about. Katie’s gentleness was repeatedly put to the test by another dog with a “bad jealous streak”. Katie came into my life at a time when I found life not worth living. Immediately I fell in love with her! Her deep brown eyes told me that I could trust her and that she would always be by my side to love me “unconditionally”…no matter how bad my days were. She gave me a purpose and a reason to get out of bed everyday.
    The sacrifice my relative made by giving Katie to me has forever changed my life in more ways than I can express. I can’t begin to imagine how difficult that decision was.
    Everyday Katie meets me with that excited tail wagging prance ready for whatever the day has in store. The smallest and most insignificant things she finds pleasure in. She can make a full grown man talk and act like a kid. She is one of the first things I see in the morning, and one of the last things I see at night. Just petting her soft ears calms me. She makes me feel peaceful and loved. Who could ever ask for anything more.


  42. Deborah Todd says:

    Hi Every one,
    Minette for initiating this wonderful discussion. I’m surprised that no one has mentioned this yet…”DoG” is GOD spelled backwards. Only GOD and dogs
    are capable of unconditional or agape love. I have been training dogs since 1986 when I got my first Rotiie, hated the training methods available then and knew that there had to be a “kinder, gentler way.” The rest as they say is history. When I write my book (in conjunction with a Cornell Veterinary
    Chiropractor) it will called “What the Dogs Have Taught Me.” As a trainer I was invested in finding the best way to humanely teach manners and competition obedience but what the dogs have taught me is so much more profound than anything I ever taught them. Most importantly, they brought me to a personal relationship with God which has changed my life. God bless you all.


  43. I have an 18 month old Chihuahua and she is the most beautiful person in my life. I saved her from a puppy mill, they kept puppies in an outside kennel in November in Nebraska. At this particular time it was a wind chill of maybe 18 or so. The little things were just freezing and I could not leave her there. If I would have had the money I would have saved them all, he had 5 of them. I did call animal control, they must have been tipped as they found nothing wrong. Me and my big mouth.
    This little puppy and I spend most of our day together. She is a very nervous dog. She has been through a very serious bought with mange. Nothing is too much for her. She went thru 4 treatments for this, if it would have been more I would have found the money to do that.
    She makes me feel so good inside to see her little face every morning I wake up. We play together and we go with my neighbor to take her dog to a swimming class as this dog is partially paralyzed from a spine injury. Halee,(my dog) wants to play all day long and when she is tired she crawls up in my lap and takes a snooze.
    She is just the love of my life.


  44. sally thurloway says:

    I have 4 super GSD’S & my first grandchild expected. They have not been brought up with children & would like your advise on how best to introduce them.

    many thanks , I have found all your advise useful.


  45. Dave McGoo says:

    Thank you for sharing. We’ve been saying this for years, “think like a dog.”


  46. mitch mcsweenet says:

    dogs are some of the best people I know!


  47. Cynthia Allen says:

    That was just great , thanks for shareing and again making me aware of what my 5 rescure dogs can offer me !!



  48. Janet Redbond says:

    I fully agree with all the comments re dogs. I have a gorgeous white german shepherd and he has taught me so much. Dogs are ALWAYS there for you – no matter how imperfect you are. They will always be there – no matter how late you are – so keen to see you. They do not JUDGE – like so many humans.
    I read somewhere once “The best thing a Mother can do for her child is buy him (or her) a dog”. I am so glad I followed this advice. AGREE AGREE.


  49. Trisha Hehir says:

    I share my home with my darling little schnoodle, Artie he is 2 & a bit years. He is the best thing that has ever happened to me, he is sweet funny has me in stitches all day long. He doesn’t have a mean bone in him. I wish I could give back in a doggie way even a 10th of what he gives me willingly without any expectations.


  50. Gillian Ashbee says:

    Very good article with super humane comments. My 15yr old poodle/bichon mix is my shadow & has been my reason for living ! I doubt I’ll ever really comprehend his incredible patience & acceptance of all and anything. NEVER bitten or even fought with another dog, he walks away without a backward look if another dog is grouchy. This last is the biggest lesson he’s taught (is teaching … ?!) me.


  51. I do not own a dog. For 35 years I had Cairn Terriers. In 2001, my Ginger passed away and my heart went with her. Two weeks later, a friend asked me to take care of his dog while he went on vacation. I did. When he came to pick up his Min French Poodle, he gave me money! Wow, that wasn’t work! I can do this!!!!
    So, that was the beginning of my Doggie Bed and Breakfast. I have had 24 different dogs come stay with me (one at a time) over the years since. Love learning different breeds. I find joy in every dog regardless of their breed, color or shortcomings. I feel like half a person without a dog. A dog is like a ray of sunshine! One thing I find most people who own a dog forget to do is give that dog and yourself at least 15 minutes of one to one play time EVERY single day. Soooo important! It reinforces the bond you have and gives you both time away from the world and work.
    I have met some of the nicest dogs and, oh yes, people in the world!

    All of the advice I read from you is valuable. please keep it coming! thank you!


  52. Brenda says:

    Nicely said. Remember that our lives are one day at a time,so if you have a bad day, try again. Letting go of the past is really for us so forgive. And that can be a process too. Just keep at it. It really works.


  53. Christine says:

    I have learned more about God from my dogs than I have from anyone or anything else. My dog just wants to be around me, even if he’s not begging for a treat, he just settles down near where I am….and then it dawned on me, that’s what God wants of us: to be aware that he is there with us in every aspect of our lives. He loves to be acknowledged by us and he gladly gives us treats/blessings and forgets/forgives our wrongdoings…He just wants to have that companionship with us like we have with our dogs! How eye-opening that realization was for me….I hope some of you can experience the same realization.


    Kirstie Reply:

    I have a 7 month old lab mix named Lucy. I say all of the time that God is teaching me about life through her! It is amazing to me how much I learn from her.


    Marri Reply:

    I have a 4.5 year old German Shepherd who was born on the island of Guam and has gone through a divorce with her first family and then bounced from house to house. She has issues but don’t we all? I have learned so much in the past 2 years of owning her it’s amazing. I can also apply what I’ve learned through Tasi that I can apply to raising children or dealing with people in general. I’ve learned to be patient with her. I’ve learned to take huge tasks and break them down. I’ve learned that i can not let her get too excited or we loose everything. I’ve learned to start from the beginning and go forward. I’ve learned to reinforce (train) her every day. I’ve learned it doesn’t help to get angry with her or try to “muscle” her into obedience. I’ve learned that not all dogs are alike – they all have individual personalities. I’ve learned how blessed I am to have a dog that I can learn from. A dog is truly man’s best friend!!! (I’ve also learned that divorce is hard on all involved!)


  54. Jennifer says:

    Have been training a 5 month old terrier mix puppy.
    He was doing well with potty training.
    Had a relapse last week. He urinated and defacated 2x in the house.
    What happened and how can I correct this behavior?


  55. I’m enjoying your training dvd’s I purchased,I was helping a young couple next door with a lab puppy that was continually getting loose and coming over to my place.As colder weather set in I was feeding her more and due circumstances they couldn’t predict during her pregnancy they were looking for someone possibly take the dog.Well I stepped up and agreed to take care of her. At this point she was an outside pup 7 mons old. I rigged up a heatlamp for warmth, etc. she was fine with it, actually enjoyed being out, she also had shelter overhead. Long story short, someone let her loose and she was gone 3 days. Got her back, 3 days later she is Parvo pos and stays at the vet 6 days in a steel cage. She’s alive! I’ve had her home 4 days now. She cannot be around other dogs for 30 days, Im hesitant to walk her anywhere but my yard. The clicker has worked great for sitting and leave it! She’s got that! I have to crate her while at work till lunch, take her out for 30 mins then back in till after work. Since she stayed in the steel crate at vet I think she was used to “going” in the crate. I realize this is going to be a challenge to potty train. Any thoughts here…. I also have a Macaw! and 2 cats in the home, lol
    my little zoo! They have had to move over and rearrange their habits also. Help!


    Minette Reply:

    Don’t take her anywhere for at least the 30 days or you are exposing other puppies and even non vaccinated adults to parvo! You can use a product called whizie wash to help kill the parvo. Clorox also works, but your yard will need to be sprayed once her quarantine is over so that future puppies you have don’t get parvo.

    As far as the crate goes; get her out every 2 hours, you can put a grate in the bottom of the crate to help keep her cleaner while she learns.


    Beverly Reply:

    Yes, the vet told me about the 30 days. I have been using Clorox on everything, I will look into getting the yard sprayed also when this is over. The 30 days is very tough on her and myself because she has alot of energy, but I know it has to be done. Just looking forward to Feb. 12


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