Life is short. Play with your dog.

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“A dog is a man’s best friend” – a very famous line, right? And definitely, so true!

And then I thought to myself… “A woman’s too!”

But then I realized, my sense of humor has reached a different level all over. Well. But this is not my point, my point is that a dog is the only thing on earth that loves you more than he loves himself.

Such short little lives our pets have to spend with us, and they spend most of it waiting for us to come home each day. It is amazing how much love and laughter they bring into our lives and how close we become with each other because of them.

“If I have any beliefs about immortality, it is that certain dogs I have known will go to heaven, and very, very few persons.” 

Honestly, being a crazy dog lover, everything about them, everything, the way they walk, the way they run, bark, eat, whine, the way they tilt their head, the way they wag their tail, the way they sleep, the way they come to you and put their head on your lap and tell you you’re not alone, the way they look at you with those big twinkling eyes when they want what you’re eating, the way they jump around and play with you when they’re too happy, the way they curl up around your feet when they are scared, the way they grab your leg when you’re leaving them at home and going somewhere, the way they growl out of jealousy when their owner pets some other dog, the way they greet you when you’re back home from school or work, the way they lick away your tears when you’re hiding in your room and crying, the way they clean their paws, they way they run away when it’s bathing time, the way they react when you show the leash to them, because they know it’s time for a walk… and so much more, everything about them is so pure, that even the thought of them makes you feel so good, so loved and so happy! Looking at their pictures, thinking about them, and obviously, being with them automatically brings a smile on your face!

No matter how close we are to another person, few human relationships are as free from strife, disagreement, and frustration as is the relationship you have with a dog. I also suspect that we cherish dogs because their unblemished souls make us wish – consciously or unconsciously – that we were as innocent as they are, and make us yearn for a place where innocence is universal and where the meanness, the betrayals, and the cruelties of this world are unknown. Agree?

Somehow, dogs teach you all that you couldn’t have possibly learned from books or your elders or preachers. Their love is so pure, that whatever they do for you, it’s done without any reconsiderations, unlike humans. Humans think, they think so much, that the relevance of their intentions is somewhere lost.

It’s just the most amazing thing to love a dog, isn’t it? It makes our relationships with people seem as boring as a bowl of porridge! No?

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Here are 7 things dogs can teach us about what matters most in life:

  1. Live in the moment.
    Although dogs remember things like where the treats are kept, what street takes them home and who they’ve met before, they only access that information when they need it — in the moment. Whether they’re eating a bowl of pedigree or chasing a ball, dogs live for the present moment. The past is gone; you can’t do anything about it. The future is unknown. The only thing you can really enjoy and affect is the present moment.
  1. Overcome fear with love.
    There are plenty of stories about aggressive dogs who transformed into kind, gentle dogs after they were placed in a loving environment. Dogs can overcome their fear and insecurities through love, and so can humans. Love truly does conquer all, and the first step for us is to love ourselves. If you can replace fear and self-criticism with self-love, no matter what situation you’re in, life gets easier.
  1. Don’t hold grudges
    A grudge is a feeling of resentment toward someone. It originates in our mind. Humans are the only species who have a tendency to hold a grudge for the longest time ever. A dog will never be angry with you because you didn’t give him a chicken bone or his favorite cookie after he was ordered to jump through a tyre hanging from a tree branch! Holding a grudge weighs you down emotionally and keeps you from moving forward in life. Let grudges go and you will create your own personal freedom J
  1. Play every day.
    Dogs love to play, which usually involves lots of movement, whether it’s running, chasing or jumping. This is a good reminder for us to play and move our bodies every day as well. Playing opens up your mind and spirit to all kinds of new ideas and creativity, I believe! It’s a needed break from the constant 24/7 work environment. And if you can exercise while you play, even better. Dogs actually give you a reason to get out and go walking, running and biking! And it’s a fact that when you take your dog out for a walk, you actually burn calories!
  2. Jump for joy when you’re happy.
    Have you ever seen a dog circling around or jumping up and down at the thought of getting a treat or chasing a ball? Wouldn’t it be fun if we could all jump around when we’re excited about something? We live life so fast that we often forget to get excited and celebrate the good times because we’re already on to the next thing. We live in a miraculous world where the sun comes up every day, flowers bloom and seasons change. Then why do we put up a sad face when things don’t fall in place? There is so much out there to be happy about.
  1. Enjoy the journey.
    When dogs go for a car ride, they stick their head out the window, smell the air and feel the wind against their fur. They don’t care where they’re going. They’re just enjoying the journey. Although goals are great to set, we often forget that it’s the journey that matters most. When we get too attached to the outcome, we set ourselves up for frustration, depression or even anger if our exact expectations are not met. Next time you set a goal, be open to other possibilities and enjoy every moment of excitement, creativity, fun and lessons in the journey.
  1. Love unconditionally.
    No matter what, dogs love you unconditionally. They wag their tails when they see you, no matter what mood you’re in. They still want to give you big wet kisses, even if you’ve just yelled at them. And they instantly forgive you no matter how you behave. Loving others unconditionally is tough, but it’s the one that would surely make the world a better place if we all just tried.

So, we can learn a lot from our dogs. Their companionship, loyalty and unconditional love is unmatched by any human standards.

The dog has no ambition, no self-interest, no desire for vengeance, no fear other than that of displeasing. They only care about you, they only want to be there with you and for you, and the fact that a hand gesture as simple as a pat on their head, can make their rest of the day so amazing, you can imagine what’d happen if you give them a hug! It’s an unconditional love, from both sides. Petting, scratching, and cuddling a dog could be as soothing to the mind and heart as deep meditation and almost as good for the soul as prayer.

Owners of dogs will have noticed that, if you provide them with food and water and shelter and affection, they will think you are god. Whereas owners of cats are compelled to realize that, if you provide them with food and water and shelter and affection, they draw the conclusion that they are gods.

Dogs have given us their absolute all. We are the center of their universe. We are the focus of their love and faith and trust. They serve us in return for scraps. It is without a doubt the best deal man has ever made.

“Dogs don’t know about beginnings, and they don’t speculate on matters that occurred before their time. Dogs also don’t know—or at least don’t accept—the concept of death. With no concept of beginnings or endings dogs probably don’t know that for people having a dog as a life companion provides a streak of light between two eternities of darkness.”

So, I’d like to end my write-up by pleading to all those who love dogs, to give the same amount of love to stray dogs too! Some of them might be abandoned, some of them might be hungry, ill, in desperate need of some love and care, so why can’t we take out a few minutes and go feed them and take care of them… give them the love they really deserve? It’s winter time here in India, let’s provide some warm blankets that we probably don’t need to them so that they can have a sound sleep! If you see a dog moaning in pain, he might be injured, how about taking him to the vet’s? I know it’s asking for too much, but I’m doing my bit whenever I can, the fact that dogs can’t speak, lets understand them, because understanding humans is as it is difficult. Let’s do our bit, wherever you are, whichever country you belong to! Let’s spread some love!

-TanyaSinghKochar

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