You don't need to be Dr. Doolittle to talk to the animals
It's not unusual to talk TO your dog but have you ever wondered what it would be like to talk WITH your dog? What sort of conversation would you have with them? Be honest. Is the communication you have with your dog one sided? You do all the talking. Most dogs are only too happy for a chance to be heard, according to Julia Meads, an accomplished dog trainer and behaviour advisor. In this article she explains what Animal Communication is and how it can improve your relationship with your dog and your agility results.
Agility is a partnership. We put lots of time, effort, energy and money into building that special relationship with our dogs. Whether they be dogs we've rescued or dogs we've had since they were puppies, they often come with in-built issues, either physical or behavioural - as do people. For whatever reason, sometimes the team just doesn't seem to work. The balance is not right. This can alternate with periods of sheer brilliance - and we just donít know why!
My name is Julia Meads and I run a company called Intuitive Natural Communication with Animals (INCA). I take a very grounded and practical view to understanding and working with dogs. My belief is that everyone has the potential to 'talk' with animals and, in many cases, already do so. This is called Animal Communication.
hold the key
Animal Communication is a way of being able to share feelings with any type of animal. These all hold an essence/energy behind them. These feelings are then interpreted in to a human language Ė words. At its most basic, this is called intuition, gut feeling, common sense, companionship or simply the relationship of living with a pet. In advanced cases, behavioural, nervous conditions, health, relationships and understandings can be reached, often resolving issues felt impossible.
If you could ask your dog some questions, what would they be?
Most of our dogs are listening intently to us all of the time and are delighted to be heard. We experience the unspoken communication of our dogs - the way they read our body language and clues - when we are about to feed them, go out for a walk together or race towards for a clear round!
True Animal communication is a two-way street. It requires giving them our full attention, with a true sense of purpose and working with total integrity, to bring you closer together.
How does it
Before speaking with you, I communicate with your dog. I may pick up these messages as images, feelings, sensations in my body, words or essences. This gives me brief idea of its personality, character, and in some cases physical or emotional issues. I ask them for some 'earth connections.' These may be something you would relate to though they might not make any sense to me. This information enables me to confirm with you that I have a connection with your dog. I also ask you, in advance, to think of any questions you wish to ask and the true purpose of setting up the communication.
In my work, individual communications can be carried out with your dog past or present. This can often allow closure and peace to be brought to a past team relationship and to enable a new team to develop. It can alleviate feelings of guilt or disloyalty or maybe allowing a loving message to be passed on. In the present, the unexplained can be come clear and a new level of understanding reached. Many of use feel very differently about a situation or an individual if we understand all the facts and feelings. The aim is to improve your relationship and bring you closer together.
Assisting the professionals
My work alongside vets has mainly been with health rehabilitation and deep rooted behavioural issues. I have worked as a consultant in various welfare organisations dealing with abused, neglected, abandonment issues etc. Working as a trainer myself, I have also teamed up with other trainers to resolve issues in many working dogs, many of whom come from a rescue, re-homed or a traumatic past history. However not all relationships and team work problems have deep and complicated reasons behind them and many issues can be solved by a simple conversation. Sometimes is just fun to hear the view point of the other half of your team - almost like having a chat with a mate!
In this work, it is important that a structure is followed and boundaries set so that a space is opened up for communication and closed again when complete. If this is not followed, then animals would be jumping in and communicating when not invited. This would be a real problem at a show for example!
Here are two examples of agility handler/dog partnerships I've helped recently.
Study 1 - Mike Douglas and Dee Dee
His Border Collie X Saluki Dee Dee is a very clever dog, fast and focused. She is wise and in tune with Mike. During our communication, she showed me the telepathic method she uses for running a course. All Mike had to do was visualise the course to give them clarity, focus and direction for the run ahead.
Dee Dee was very excited about the whole event. She felt it was so great to be ' Queen for the day.' Mike went through much clearance and balance to create the concentration and motivation required for the day. IT paid off in the end as they achieved fourth place in the Final - and it was only their first appearance at Olympia! Well done to you both.
In this case, the key word is 'unity.' With the help of reiki healing, we have been able to remove blocks, bring fears to the surface, so that past issues being projected in to the present can be removed and replaced with positive, balanced clear views. Mike is a natural animal communicator, and he plans to start his practitioners course this year. I wish him well in his future ventures.
Study 2 - Ellen Rocco and Bob
The key here was to find the root of the problem. I found it lay deep in Bob's past and required a deeper level of understanding to help resolve the issues and create positive pathways forward for their future.
I asked Ellen to write down some questions to ask Bob. I had no idea what these were, but Bob did! He was only too keen to give the answers ahead of Ellen asking me, proving how much he was in tune with her. He was giving his total attention and truly listening to the essence behind the words, in order to hear the messages being conveyed.
He explained that he had 'taught' resistance from an early age after having been harshly treated and tied up as a puppy. It was the way he survived. This behaviour presented itself every time he was asked to conform such as wait on the contacts.
Having explained the reasons for his deep day-to-day resistance, Ellen now see Bob in a different light. She is very proud of the 'new' Bob and his ongoing process and states '...he has changed so much. He is a different dog, so much more affectionate, easier to handle... and faster.' Often the use of words can cause separation and to share the essence behind words creates unity and understanding.
We are delighted to report that Bob has now completed his first two clear rounds and had two places at an interclub match. He is heading now in the right direction!
Julia has also run her own pet dog club for the last ten years including competition obedience and basic agility. With her own dogs. she has competed in both disciplines.
She does consulting work for TV Pet Rescue, dog rescue homes as well as 1-2-1 home visits in addition to instructing at her dog club and teaching instructors. She also tours nationwide, giving talks to animal communities. Talk 1 deals with calming signals, body language, dog interaction and behaviour, while talk 2 covers animal communication and reiki healing. Julia also hold seminars, workshops and gave talks.
Julia lives in Selsey, West Sussex. She shares her home with four dogs - two WSDs (father and son), a working Bearded Collie and a mini x as well as two ponies and ten fish! Most of all Julia holds a deep love and understand of dogs.