I am a firm believer in adopting rescue dogs and for those who know me; know my house has always been a dog haven or heaven.
Recently I adopted a new dog to add to our pack and I think there are some valuable life lessons that I wanted to share.
- You know it is right when it’s right. I’ve been looking for a new dog for several years. I’ve been to visit the rescue groups, the humane society, and even considered buying a puppy. None of these dogs were right. They would have made perfect pets for the right person but it never was the right fit for me. Somehow when you look into their eyes you know. There’s a connection or not and it’s important to understand that about yourself. Life decisions are like that too. You have to know about what you want and what fits you. Sure, you can make things work but it’s better to know if this is really what you want.
- Find your place. I enjoy walking my dogs as a group. It was recommended that I walk the new dog alone without my other two dogs but I decided to give it a try and walk all three. New dog knew exactly where his place was with the other dogs. He didn’t try to lead; he wanted to fit in. I think there is a life lesson there too. It’s good to tread softly at first and find your place. People who come in like gangbusters tend to alienate others. It’s good to get your boundaries and test the water.
- Watch others for guidance. I was told new dog needed to be walked off my property to potty. All he did was watch my other two dogs for what was acceptable and that was all it took. Role modeling is very effective and applies to many business situations. Want to get ahead? Watch leaders within your company. You will quickly see that they aren’t the first to leave in the evening. That time between 5 and 6:30 may be when you’d like to be heading out but there are important office dynamics that take place later in the day. Where people sit at the conference table is important to study too.
- Confidence builds slowly. Not that new dog is shy; he’s confident but I think he wants to feel secure before letting all of his personality show through. Considering the upheaval in his young life; it’s understandable. I think many people are like that too. It takes getting to know someone to have their personality show. Sometimes making snap judgments about people can steer you off course. Invest some time and it probably will be worthwhile.
- Savor fresh air. I realize that dogs live in the moment and it’s a great lesson. They appreciate the smells and fresh air. New dog seems to be grateful to have plenty of new smells and excited to be in this very moment. Whether it is on a walk or on the yard he’s just enjoying the very experience.
- Things don’t matter. My dogs have lots of toys and bones and are happy to share. There’s plenty for everyone and no one is possessive. New dog as well as my other dogs are just as happy chewing on an old ratty tennis ball as something new. It teaches me that you can find pleasure in small things. Obsession with material objects is so unnecessary.
- Unconditional love. New dog is happy to have a home and quickly shows me his love. What an important life lesson… to love unconditionally. Love yourself, your friends, children and family. Love your job, your community and mother earth. Be grateful for the little things and know that you make a difference.