Monday, January 3, 2011

Lend a helping paw...

This concept is not foreign to very many people. Most of us have heard of it, but how many of us have tried it? Now, I am not suggesting that you scoop your goldfish out of his bowl and start petting him or anything like that. However, if you have a cat or a dog I do suggest you give this a try. This is something more than just petting or grooming your animal. This is something you will once again, do mindfully.

How do you pet your animal mindfully? Well, take a quiet moment and groom your pet and be specific about what you feel. How does his/her fur feel? Soft or coarse? Is its fur long or short? Cats are special for this form of therapy because if they are happy, they will purr. If you can get your cat to purr, I suggest you put their body on yours. Then let the purring be felt straight through your whole body. Ask each body member to feel the vibration of the purr. It is amazing.

Some people like to allow their animal to lick them, personally I cannot stand this, but for some they like to feel a cats tongue on their skin. No matter your preference, allow every one of your senses to take in the animal and the experience. Then talk yourself through breathing and releasing tension while you groom or pet your animal. Feel the tension drain away from you. When you are finished, or your animal has forced you to finish, ask yourself, "What did I notice?" Make a mental note of what you noticed about your experience.

I would love to hear from everyone about this exercise. What success have you had? What is your pet's name? How long has this friend been a useful therapeutic tool for you? The one above is Onyx, she's 6 months old and as much as I love her, she is my kids' cat. Mine is camera shy and he wouldn't let me photograph him being loved on. Onyx purrs so loud, you can hear her from across the room; whereas Caramel (my cat) does it really quietly and it takes a lot of coaxing. He's a beautiful creature though.

Either cat, they really make an impact when I need some animal therapy. Caramel however, I assume this is because he is older, but he becomes quickly aware of when I need some animal therapy. He has a sixth sense about it. Researchers believe there is a connection here with the animal and its owner, but I don't need to be a specialist to tell you that my Caramel loves me! 


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1 comment:

  1. What beautiful kitties you have! This is a fantastic site, by the way. I'm so proud of your hard work. It makes my heart smile.
    your friend JB :)


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