Great Books About Animal Spirit & Healing

I always find it amusing when people try to differentiate ourselves far and away from the other animals as if we are not in any way similar or on the same playing field.  My husband will talk about ‘our animals’ and I will occasionally remind him that we are animals too.  In my lifetime of being around animals, predominately cats and a few dogs, birds and fish, I have come to the knowledge that they each have reasoning capabilities, a great capacity for love, forgiveness and joy, their own proclivities and desires, social decorums, ways of training others and being part of the family.  No cat you will ever have will be exactly like another.  Their personality differences are infinite snowflakes of uniqueness.  I will never have the capacity to know all animals but am amply blessed to know a few while I am here.  I have come to believe they are here to help us grow in the knowledge of right and wrong, of compassion and grace as well as aiding us in the retention of awe.  Each creature really is awe-inspiring and fearfully made.  It is a humbling responsibility to have a fur child in our family who trusts us on such a deep level to be their advocate through thick and thin, to always look after their best interest.  It is equally humbling to see that they give the very same dedication, if not even more so, to us, their human-animal companions.  I am currently studying CMT, Canine Massage Therapy, and on a progressive training there as I continue to learn more about them and myself.

I recently picked up The above book This is one of those really great books that’s hard to put down once you crack the cover.  Regardless of your religious beliefs, there is something beyond hunks of meat shaped like a cat or a person. That something is the breath of life, the spirit that motivates us behind the mind and body, that same light that fades from our eyes once we are gone.  I have been surrounded by quite a bit of death the last few years and witness how one foot is here on this plane while the other foot is in the netherworld.  People not on any drugs will awake here on this plane and tell you plainly that they were just speaking to deceased friends, relatives, their dog was there to greet them etc.  This morning, a friend of mine passed away.  Prior to Bobby’s death, he saw my best friends dead daughter Jennifer amongst others.  He would awaken here and be disappointed he had not already crossed over the rainbow bridge.    Bobby was ready to go and left us early this morning.  I believe we are all here with plans, with things to do.  But it wasn’t until reading The Spritual Nature Of Animals by Karlene Stange, that I came away with an awareness that they also have plans.  This struck a deep chord in me (see my other canine posts) as Rhett, our resident Doberman and I, have been through some heavy stuff lately which has all helped me to share new information with others to help them as well as set me upon a new career path.

Temple Grandin, upon the death of an animal,  asked in her book Animals Make Us Human, ‘Where do they go?’
She is speaking of the spirit, the light in the eyes, the thing most of us don’t really discuss that we all share, the breath of life that contains the spirit in the temporal body.

I do not advocate the killing of any of our fellow animals but I also realize that not everybody will go vegan.  I would much rather see a return (and saving) of our local farms who make efforts to raise animals humanely, who are in the meat or dairy business as ethically as possible than I ever would want to see what is happening, corporate farms with zero compassion taking over, wiping out our local farmers with their power and might who create substandard fare while creating a living hell on earth for our brethren animals.  Even if you don’t like pigs, perhaps you don’t like their ways or just don’t care, you have to understand they are loyal, fun loving and smarter than most dogs.  Dogs are as smart as that of a 4 or 5-year-old child.  That isn’t what you would call dumb.  The thing with dogs is that their emotional intelligence remains that of a 4 or 5-year-old too, regardless of how old they actually are.  Some humans remain at an infant state too but we’ll move off that topic.  ♥  While we may lose patience with an adult human acting a fool, it is very important to absorb at your core that no matter how smart your fur kid is, his emotional intelligence is that of a 4-year-old kid.  It is never going to mature beyond this so extend the necessary grace when that 4-year-old chews something up stressing out when you work late.  You’re the adult in this relationship, always.  Put things away, provide toys and other healthy distractions or own the consequences with grace.  It is true that as an animal ages, coupled with consistent,  firm but kind training or mentoring as I like to call it, good socialization as you would your human kids, they settle in and are far better behaved as they age which can give off the illusion that they are mature.  Yes but no…there will always be that child within and God bless this because we need reminding of awe and humility and innocence every day.

 Dr. Goldsteins The Nature Of Animal Healing is one of my reference books.  I learned about alternative heartworm treatments here as well as how bad all these annual shots are for our fur babies.  I haven’t had any shots since I was a child and I feel fine.  Why on earth do we ply our creatures with annual insults?  Also, I did not realize until last year that most of these shots, for us and them, contain mercury and other toxins in their mix.  Unless it is necessary, such as an area where Parvo is common or what have you, why put them deliberately in harm’s way?  Be judicious.  This book will help guide you there.


The book above is also a great book on Holistic approaches to wellness.  Many people argue this is silly woo woo stuff that doesn’t work, however, I have experienced first hand the healing of various homeopathic medicines and can attest that they are indeed effective.

Another fabulous reference book is Dr. Pitcairn’s Complete Guide to Natural Health For Dogs & Cats.  This book teaches natural herbs and techniques, as well as recipes for home cooked meals.  Also, you can look up symptoms and diseases to help guide you through many situations.

What animal lovers library would be completed without James Herriot All Creatures Great & Small? Or perhaps the whole set, below.

Please post your own stories and comments, I love feedback and thanks for reading. ♥

Detoxing The Lungs – Breath Better

The body was magnificently designed to detox every day.  The problem is that no body was ever built to withstand the onslaught we all face today.  Consequently, there is a rise in asthma and other chronic lung fatigue issues as our body burden of toxins increase.  People tell me ‘I’ll die anyway, let me eat what I want and do what I want’ but the point is in truly living and breathing and embracing life to its fullest while we are here.  Quality of life over quantity…but if you are mindful of doing daily detoxing and eating a healthy mostly raw organic plant-based lifestyle, then you will end up with both quantity and quality!  ♥

There are both active (exercises) and passive (pill popping) ways to detox and assists the lungs to do their job better and longer.  We are not merely bystanders, our health is not genetically writ but something we own by at least 90-95%.  Only 5-10% of your chances of getting cancer are genetic.  While your family tree and how your forefathers ate does affect the gene pool and make it stronger or weaker, you still have an amazing amount of control here.  I just want to drive this point home because so many folks say well, our family has asthma, or cancer, or high blood pressure, triple bypasses, diabetes or we are prone to be fat and just stop for a second and take a real hard look at how your beloved lived prior to getting their disease issues.  Don’t pass the buck here, eat better, stop smoking, detox your daily lifestyle.

Sorry I tend to get on a rant.  So the lungs… unless you are very careful to use only organic and natural cleaning agents, and environmentally friendly and toxin free furnishings, the average home contains about 10 gallons of synthetic chemical products.

From cigarette smoke, to pesticides,  from paints to household cleaners, to candles and incense or other air fresheners –  all can distribute toxins throughout the home.  One of the first lines of defense is purifying your air.  I recommend Rabbit room air purifiers. They are not cheap but they are the sleekest I’ve seen on the market with a 5 stage filtration, plus the customization is great!   I have owned some ugly air filtration systems in my day and am thankful now that I no longer feel the need to sacrifice style for health. Rabbit offers the Artists Series featuring images by Gustav Klimt, Katsushika Hokusai and original designs by Rabbit Air’s creative team, to offer you a sophisticated answer to stale air.

I leave mine on auto so that they automatically adjust the fan speed high or low as needed to filter the air in the entire room as much as twice an hour.

The Minus A2 – SPA 780 filters as much as 815 square feet while the Minus A2 -SPA 700A, filters as much as 700 square feet.  The unit stands on its own base or you can opt to wall mount it.

I totally dig the mood light, the LED lighting may be turned on so that it provides a soft mellow glow of soothing colours.  It automatically senses when it is dark or ‘nap time’ so I like to read in bed, then turn the light out for bed, watch the colours for a bit while I get myself organized and poof, it goes out a few moments later.  Perfect!

There are six stages of air purification and you can customize, as noted earlier, for Toxin absorbing, Pet allergy, odor, germs.  Many people who keep birds choose this filtration system since birds are very sensitive to bad air.

In our home, we really don’t have any place to ‘hide’ things like air purifiers or litter boxes.  It’s a modern home and not large.  These units are gorgeous!  We have people over and they comment on the filters because they present themselves as art.  As it is something that needs to blend in and look great and something I will see each time I enter the room, I am happy to fork over the cash for it.  We have our filters on auto ship as well.

Driving can be very dirty business, as can sitting in a dusty cubicle.  Working from home is such blessing but I recently found myself driving into the office far more than I planned and coughing due to the detritus level. I wanted something for the car and the office that was easily transportable, nice looking and with Hepa filtration.  The Tecool air purifier USB plugs into your car or laptop for easy peasy transition and comes in a soft white or black.   A coworker was chronically coughing one morning so I unplugged my purifier and plugged it into her laptop so she could breathe some fresh air.  Within minutes her coughing grew quieter and then stopped all together.  For $32.99 it’s a great deal.

If you are saddled with some lung congestion, such as from construction or just general pollution, while you work on clearing the air, I recommend Hyland Phosphorus as a natural homeopathic aid for cough or chest congestion. It works fast too!  I am never without this or Fenu-Thyme capsules which have two fabulous lung healing herbs to boost your lung’s ability to clear itself out.

Folks, as we age, the lungs take a real beating.  Support your lungs by cleaning your air, minimizing dirty environments and taking natural supplements to support them.

I originally purchased my Himalayan Salt Inhaler at Whole Foods.  It was over $50.00 when I left the store.  This is a steal.  The salt lasts at least 3 years and is a great detox as you sit back and watch a movie.  Do for 30 minutes at a time.  Feel the difference in your lungs.  This is great for preventing infections or when you have an infection.

Yoga is magical.  Its one of the rare modalities of exercise that join the body, the mind and the spirit, stacking the bones, aligning the body and mind, creating calm and ability to live in the present. To ease allergies and asthma, try Shining Skull Breathing.  Yogic breathwork significantly improves lung function as it works to calm the nervous system. For Shining Skull Breathing, inhale deeply through the nose and on the exhale, breathe out short powerful bursts, one every second for ten seconds.  That is your first set.  Do 3 and gradually work yourself up to more sets.  FYI, this breathwork will temporarily increase your heart rate.  Another yogic breath is to simply breath in deeply, counting to ten (or 4 or whatever you can personally do as you slowly and deeply inhale) hold for the same amount of seconds, then exhale for the same amount of seconds to even out the breath.

Canine Acupuncture For Neurological Issues

Look closely, I call this ‘DobieTenna’ as Rhett has a needle in his head that appears to be receiving signals.

 

 

 

 

Hieronymus Rhett Thomas O’Brien Puppy (Big dog, big name) just had his 8th birthday in April.  His short name is Rhett.  He has always been a powerful dog and is so muscular that we have called him the Arnold Schwarzenegger of Dobermans as he is beautifully and massively built while at the same time, very agile.  We have downsized significantly but in our old place, we joked that he learned agility just navigating the rooms of the house without bumping into anything.  Agile.  Strong.  Rhett is also very personable, stubborn and demanding.  Fortunately he is equally as sweet and patient as he is demanding and stubborn or there’d be trouble.

 

 

 

 

 

Here’s a photo of the full scope and Rhett is being a very good boy.  At this point he has had several treatments but I want to take you back to June 4th.  I had lost my job just a few days prior.  We were in the throes (and holy bejeebus we still are) of a master bathroom remodel.  Funds are exceedingly tight.  I am a bit depressed but rah rah trying to stay upbeat when that Monday, after a good walk with my husband, Rhett begins acting all weird.  He’s weak, especially in the back and particularly his back right leg which he cannot put any weight on.  He’s panting, shivering and falling down.  After the trip to the emergency room where they take a wait and see approach, I figure we should try acupressure massage therapy on him.  I call someone to the house I know well and this does help but he is not at all right and needs a lot more.  I search out an acupuncturist and locate Spot On Wellness, for those in the Dallas area, he rocks.  Dr. Hartai does an initial treatment but it’s clear there are neurological issues that could be anything from Wobblers, some degenerative disease, a tumor or acute injury only now manifesting visibly.  He referred us to a neurologist for an MRI.  I actually started a gofundme to help out but beyond the first $600 which I am so thankful for,  nobody has contributed more recently so we are out of pocket about 2k and completely on our own on this because while there were discussions about chiropractic and acupuncture etc when I signed up with the insurance, apparently I am missing a rider I needed to have that would have covered all of this, less a $500.00 deductible.   I immediately got an appointment but also noted significant improvement from the first treatment.  The acupressure had helped a bit but the needles more.  It was recommended he have twice-weekly treatments and as he could not get in or out of the car well, that meant paying someone for house calls too.
Thinking logically through all this, I want to validate how the non- invasive treatments would work for my boy.  I already do not have funds for this anyway.  But I cannot allow my boy to suffer.

Should I spend the $500.00 deductible now to put Rhett through the MRI drama that will eat up at least 3k just for the test and more thousands for surgery yet  have a majority of that covered ($500.00 deductible and then insurance pays 80%) and KNOW what the issue is and treat it in a Western Medicine way which would mean I definitely wouldn’t have any cash for acupuncture treatments,  or be patient through the process of watching how acupuncture does for him?  Not easy decisions when your loved one is suffering, scared and weak and has no idea why or what happened.

IF you want my opinion right now, I find it utterly silly that dosing our boy with narcotics and putting him through an MRI scan and surgery to resolve is covered by my insurance but far less invasive and easier on everybody acupuncture isn’t…without paying more for a rider I didn’t know I needed until this happened and I called to begin filing the claim.

I am familiar with acupuncture, having work done to alleviate heartburn, hip flexor issues, hand issues, and swallowing issues with acalaysia, this weird disorder brought on by stress.  There is magic in this ancient practice.  Rhett went on twice weekly vet treatments plus at home massage therapy.  His improvement weekly was marked and uplifting.  Joyful.  From June 4th to today, 7/12, Rhett has gone from barely being able to stand up without falling down, to being able again to get up into his favorite chair, the tall bed, feel motivated enough and well enough to go see who is at the door. And bark.  He had even lost his bark.  Rhett can tell us who is at the door by how he barks. We know instantly if it’s someone we know, someone he likes or doesn’t.  And he has this amazingly resonant bass bark that rumbles inside your chest cavity that will floor you if you are not prepared for it.   When asking him to ‘speak’ for treats, he begins in a whisper.  You have to tell him louder and then he complies, gradually amping it up as asked to do so.  We did not train him to do this, it’s all his personality and peculiarity as a unique soul inhabiting our home and intertwining into our lives.  Rhett was able to again walk, then hike a leg to pee then trot, then canter and then gallop all without falling down.  His hind legs are still weak and his gallop is not full on but he can chase a squirrel in the backyard and look like he means it.  In truth he just wants to play with the squirrels, having played catch and release with them and rabbits as a puppy.  He loves and is fascinated by all life, all cats, all squirrels, all living creatures.  He doesn’t, as some dogs do, lump one cat into another or one squirrel as good as another, no…he literally wants to have a relationship with each being he meets.  He will nuzzle injured birds, and try his level best to appear small and non-threatening to meet another potential friend while on walks.  At parties, he knows how to mix and mingle with guests but also understands who is allowed in.  I have seen his full-on wicked Doberman side exactly once and guarding warning exactly twice and yes it is quite the frightening and magnificent spectacle to behold.  I understand how a Doberman or other powerful animal can be scarier than a gun.  Primarily because he knows exactly when to turn it on, he has fooled 99% of the people who know him into thinking he is a wussy lapdog.  A dear friend and neighbor, Keith once witnessed all 115lbs of Rhett engaging in play with our 7lb rooster and allowing the rooster to chase him away from the hens.  We joked that this was embarrassing and must never be spoken of.  Rhett bobbed and weaved and had fun with the rooster who I think really was trying to protect his harem of hens but Rhett meant no harm at all.   I have watched Rhett gracefully escort people he considers lost, off our property as well as look like he is hungry to tuck into the man who opened our front door unannounced. He has never needed to bite anyone as his warning has always sufficed.  Like my Boxer boy before him, I stand amazed at their brain and how they work things out all on their own, given the proper loving care, socialization and raising, really mostly all things we do with our human kids. I have had folks say…so he’s 8, right?  And Dobermans live, what to be 10?  Rhett has some 12, 14 & 16-year-olds in his line and sure, while he does have an expiration date like we all do, I love him and want to keep him around on this earthly plane just as long as possible.  He, like all spirits, will not be replaceable once he is gone.  Yes, oh you bet we will get another dog and love again, but it will not ever be the same.  It never is. That is the point, one of our lessons to learn here.

Life is precious.  Rhett depends upon us as any child would.  So he is getting therapy, it’s helping so much and I wanted to share this out for anyone in a similar boat not to throw in the towel too quickly or perhaps succumb to surgery too soon either because I feel as if I just watched a miracle unfold before my eyes as I watch my boy get back to his old strong and stubborn and exceedingly sweet self.

To speed healing, in addition to the vet work, I have him on some anti-inflammatory supplements.  We are using Infinite Hip and Joint, which is organic with Turmeric, glucosamine and .chondroitin and MSM, all great for us to take to keep us limber.

For his omega 3s and because all fish is toxic (there is plastics and pharma drugs in all fish plus mercury and other poisons thank you humans and factory farming for ruining fish) I give him seaweed, such as  Spirulina, Chinese Chlorella and Klamath Lake Blue-Green Algae and for his B12, Braggs Nutritional Yeast, which is a great way as a vegan (I am, he’s not) to get your B12 and is so delicious on popcorn.

Assisi Loop Option, the ActiPatch.

Your vet can prescribe an Assisi Loop, which is an electromagnetic field which pulses but you don’t feel it.  When near a conductor (such as tissue) the device will induce current flow, bringing oxygen into the area to speed healing while calming the pain signals.  The currents work in tissue from outside the body, no need to shave the fur, the magnetic fields penetrate through fur, hair, casts and bandages. You MUST have a prescription and the device will set you back $300.00 and for that, you will receive a minimum of 150 15-minute treatments.  Very simple to use, you push the button and it auto shuts off after 15 minutes.  (They do have one that is constantly on.)  After the battery is spent, the device is trash and you must buy a new one.  I have one now, but while I was waiting, and in a hurry to try this on myself and my dog, I located this device, the ActiPatch,  on Amazon.  There is a cheaper version but it doesn’t shut itself off.

Unless your pup requires acute care, such as post-surgery, you want the model that you can turn on and off for treatment so that you are not wasting the battery life.  For less than $30.00 you get 720 total hours of therapy (with ON/OFF switch) which yields 4 cents per hour of therapy.  This is a mini-me version of the Assisi loop which is more powerful.  The Actipatch is the ‘human’ marketed version, there is also the identical one marketed for pets that costs more and you don’t get the wrap.  Ha!  So order this one and save money plus get tape and a wrap and try it on yourself as well!

See my other post on dog food recommendations, but it is very important to feed properly a clean diet.  I really like Dr. Harveys and the man will actually get on the phone with you too.

Rhett’s go fund me for any interested Animal loving parties ♥

https://www.gofundme.com/treatment-for-heironymus-rhett