Posts Tagged ‘animal behavior’

Love Transcends Death and Species

The Huffington Post video in their impact session presented this photo  that has stirred a nation regarding a soldier who died in war and his dog by his casket.  The commentary is interesting. Yet, what struck me was how the hawkeye, the dog, knew that his deceased friend was in the casket and what was going on in his mind as he lay down next to the casket while the entire funeral service was taking place.  It is promising that the nation was touched by that scene.  It continues to support the kindred spirit projects theory, that the human animal bond touches the absolute deepest parts of our heart and emotions. These connections go deeper than we can currently understand or appreciate.  Dr. Penny Lloyd shared some her most profound insights regarding the loss of her equine companion of 29 years.  Clients throughout my decades of veterinary practice would occasionally share how they grieved more for the loss of their animal friends than they did for different family members, commenting that they felt more unconditional love and no “baggage” from their kindred spirits.  From the animals perspective, I would often see animals grieving from the loss of a family member or other animals that they shared their lives with.  One 12 year old schnauzer stopped eating almost completely for a couple of months and had dramatic weight loss after the death of the elderly husband in the family.  The wife took her anorexic schnauzer to numerous veterinarians, specialists etc. to see if there was something physically wrong.  Despite numerous blood tests, radiographs, mri’s etc., no one could find anything wrong.  She brought her dog to me as a last option, hearing that I practiced a more holistic approach which also included grief counseling.  Upon reviewing all the thorough veterinary medical records and conducting my own physical examination, I agreed that there was no evidence of any physical illness at this time.  I prescribed a homeopathic remedy for grief and within 24 hours the dog began eating again and continued to recover.  The client was so amazed that she realized that she was still grieving as well and asked if she could take the remedy.  I explained to her that I am a veterinarian and did not prescribe to people.  However, the choice of remedy was based on what was used for humans.  She decided to take the remedy based on her own choice.  She commented afterwards that she had this “funny” feeling of the release of the depth of the grief.  She still missed her husband tremendously, but felt that the deep pain had somehow disappeared.  I imagine that that his how her dog may have felt as well.

There are numerous examples demonstrating how animals grieve for others.  Truly these moments transcend death and species. The insights that I have gleamed from the  story  of the labrador retriever, hawkeye grieving for his deceased companion are: 1. animals grieve similarly to humans and 2. animals sense the death of others and perhaps even sense their continued presence even after death.  In addition, I believe that the deep connections that we feel when we see animals behave similar to human behaviors has its roots somewhere deep in our psyche.  The Harvard entomologist, Dr. E. O. Wilson termed this belief “biophilia”,  an innate connection to be in nature and with all animals.

What are your thoughts regarding this photo and the nations response?

Trans-species Mother’s Day: Continued….

The maternal instinct truly transcends species.  Identity between mother and baby goes beyond labels.  A monkey nurses a kitten, a golden retriever adopts tiger cubs and the video documentation of trans-species maternal love evolves beautifully on Youtube.  This truly is a study of how animals can not only live together in harmony, beyond their labels of predator or prey, or speciesism.  This is an ongoing study documenting maternal behaviors transcending the labels that put on different beings.  I will continue to share these video documentations as I come across them. Please send in video’s that you are aware of as well.  This is a new level of animal behavior research that can teach us many lessons in living together in harmony.  We can document and continue to create a new Garden of Eden!  Watch these video’s and smile at the beauty of mother nature!
Maternal Behavior between Dog and Tiger cubs

Golden Retriever with Tiger cubs

Golden Retriever Dog Adopted Three White Tiger Babies


Monkey adopts kitten – SO CUTE

Dog Adopts a Panther Cub

Cat Adopts Rabbit

Cat Adopts Baby Red Panda

Polar Bears Receive Protection

Kudos to Canada for acknowledging the obvious, that Polar Bears are a greatly endangered species due to the current climate crisis and now will receive deserved protection according to this article in the Huffington Post. As their habitat melts and we continuously hear of polar bear cubs drowning because they cannot reach enough ice to land somewhere, governments need to take action right now to try to curb the climate change that is endangering polar bears. Their fight for survival is heroic as we hear of polar bears heading south and hear other fascinating anecdotes about polar bears breeding with grizzly bears where they are beginning to interact. Actually in British Columbia, there is one area, the Great Bear Rain Forest or the Spirit Bear Rain Forest where a small percentage of the black bears in this region carry a recessive gene to be white. It is believed that this may date back to the last ice age. During Salmon runs in September these white black bears can be seen along the shoreline going for salmon. They are such an amazing site that the first nation tribes in the area called them spirit bears.

The irony of it is that their is a proposal for an oil pipeline from the Alberta Tar Sands to the British Columbia coastline directly through the Spirit Bear Rain Forest, the last great temperate rain forest left in the world. Not only is one of the greatest causes of this climate crisis right there in the Alberta Tar Sands, but the proposed oil pipeline will take it through the Spirit Bear Rainforest where the last vestiges of the last ice age still remain.

I find it amazing that we are apparently seeing polar bears consciously or unconsciously adapting to survival and climate change by interbreeding with grizzly bears that they are beginning to share territory with. I ponder if anything or what is going on in their psyches that they are interbreeding. Are they just in the same territory and then recognize grizzlies as not that different from them, or their something at a trans-species level of consciousness or subconsciousness that is happening, beyond our current understanding.
One can only ponder and speculate. The end result though appears to be a current adaptation for survival as the world changes around them. What are your thoughts? Is there some bigger picture, beyond our comprehension that is creating this attempt for survival?

Animal Companions offer Psychological Benefits: Of Course!

It is wonderful to see the studies  mounting up  that continue to further document the health benefits of our animal friends.  This recent study documenting that pets offer psychological benefits seems like a no brainer to me! Duh! Of course they do! The benefit of these studies are that each one continues to accumulate further documentation that the happiest, healthiest future includes humans sharing their lives with animals. The great Harvard entomologist, E.O. Wilson proposed that their is an innate need for humans to share their lives with other living beings, which he called “biophilia”.
This is why we share our lives with them. This is why there are more multi-species households in the U.S. than not. This is what I wrote about in my “Kindred Spirits”. They offer us psychological benefits in prisons, schools for the emotionally challenged, senior citizen homes, orphanages, and wherever people are yearning for unconditional love at very deep levels.
I remember a statement by a colleague of mine, Dr. Larry Dossey that I paraphrase frequently “If there was a pill that had all the documentation on the health benefits of animals for people, it would be the best documented and most desired medication on the market”.
Perhaps we can now develop non-harmful, ethical, humane studies documenting the health benefits of living in a multi-species world that is based on loving kindness and compassion for all beings. Now that would be a great study that could lead to profound, happy outcomes! Perhaps, that is what we can create through the kindred spirits project. If you have ideas on how to create such a study and would like to co-create a study like this, let me know and let’s create it. Perhaps the study would be actually creating such worlds, little microcosms of loving compassionate multi-species communities. Perhaps some exist already. Do you know of one?
Let’s have fun creating one!

Study Shows Pet Ownership Has Psychological Benefits: Huffington Post

TV Interview with Dr. Karen Becker and Dr. Schoen

Dr. Karen Becker, author of “Dr. Becker’s Real Food for Healthy Dogs and Cats” and one of my absolute outstanding students interviewed me in a two part heartfelt, candid TV interview for her radio show. I thought you might be interested in watching this interview. The second part of this TV Discussion about the Kindred Spirits Project goes into the background and deeper questions that I pose on the kindred spirits project. I share with Dr. Becker, my personal spiritual journey that I based the creation of the kindred spirits project.
Dr. Becker is an excellent interviewer and brought out my deeper vision of what we are co-creating as part of the kindred spirits project. It is a joy to see younger veterinarians enthusiastically embracing the concepts of holistic integrative veterinary medicine and spreading the word to an ever widening audience. It is even more heartening to see how a new generation of veterinarians is acknowledging my theories of animal field theory, trans-species field theory and the healing power of the human animal bond.
I hope you enjoy these two TV interviews! Till next time…..May all you kindred spirits be blessed with inner peace, joy, health and love!

Kindred Whale Joy

Time for another demonstration of co-species healing and shared joy! This heart-wrenching, suspenseful and then inspiring video of whale lovers saving a dying humpback whale entangled in enormous fishnets just before taking its last breaths of life, will put a smile on the face of all animal lovers and immediately fill your hearts with joy and happiness.

One of the great benefits of the internet and Youtube is how they enable us to witness the compassion and caring that we share with other animal lovers. It helps support us in continuing to do what we can do to help animals in need. Sometimes animal lovers can suffer with compassion fatigue, endlessly opening our hearts to save animals and eventually get worn down by the endless suffering that surrounds us. When we see hopeful situations like this, it is literally like a breath of fresh air, acknowledging what one or a few people can do to make a difference in one animals life.

What I also find fascinating is how patient the whale is, as if it knows that these humans are helping him. In addition, how it demonstrates its celebration of freedom afterwards. It clearly demonstrates joy in a whale. It clearly demonstrates an understanding by the whale that it is being helped.
What else does it show you?
Enjoy your weekend! Celebrate the life that you share with your kindred spirits!

Elk Saves Marmot: Celebrating A Compassion Based Holiday: Inter-species Compassion? (VIDEO)



As we celebrate the Fourth of  July Holiday weekend in the U.S. and Canada Day (July 1) in Canada,  perhaps we can rejoice in the creation of a New Society based on compassion and loving kindness for all beings.  Can the heroic elk in this video saving a drowning marmot, represent an example of trans-species compassion? It is quite impressive that the elk does not stop trying to save the marmot till he successfully does save him.  Is this because the elk was in captivity or would it have exhibited such behavior in the wild.  No one can answer this.  The beauty is that this elk chose consciously to save another drowning being, going beyond any label of species, simply another sentient being in need.  Can we go beyond our own labels of self and other and help save other beings in need?  Can we create a society where compassion and loving kindness like this is the foundation? (more…)

Musical Connections with Icelandic Horses

Musical Connections with Icelandic Horses

Musical Connections with Icelandic Horses

Musical Connection with Horses

Musical Connection with Horses

World renowned musician,  animal lover,  and kindred spirit, Bettine Clemen,  shares her musical message of  Trans-species love and  connections throughout the world with so many different species.  This video of  Icelandic horses connecting with Bettine through angelic  flute songs   illustrates how we all connect through music.   Her video documentation of the most heart warming moments in interspecies connections are available on her youtube channel.

Healing music and healing sound frequencies,  are  just one way that we all  deepen our connections and  re-awaken  our transcendent consciousness. Other gateways to awakening to these deeper connections include, nature, meditation, qi gong, yoga, just sharing quiet moments with animals, and other ways to quiet the daily busy mind traffic that tends to distract us from all that is.     Watch these icelandic horses and how they respond to Bettine’s melodious messages.

Have you had any experiences in playing music with animals and seeing how they respond? Please send any video’s or comments on these experiences.  This is one other aspect of the kindred spirits project that we are collecting.

Bettine is a veritable trans-species troubadour connecting to animals in some of the most unexpected places from the slums of Kathmandu and India to the Antarctic.  She is also finding that the music is deepening her communication with all animals and is integrating her animal communication skills with her music.  Bettine is a beautiful example of what this blog is all about.  She exemplifies the continued creation of a new world based on loving kindness and compassion for all beings.  She travels throughout the world sharing her melodious, healing message.  Enjoy her music video’s and may they nourish your inner joy, peace and love and your connections with your kindred spirits!

Garden Safety Awareness for your Dogs and Cats

One of my dear clients brought this to my awareness and I realized that we need to share this information with all dog and cat caretakers. Please inform every dog or cat owner you know. Even if you don’t have a
pet, please pass this to those who do. My client shared this with me today. Over the weekend, the doting owner of two young lab mixes purchased Cocoa Mulch from one of the common box stores to use in their garden. The dogs loved the way it smelled and it was advertised to keep cats away from their garden. Their dog decided the mulch smelled good enough to eat and devoured a large helping. She vomited a few times which was typical when she eats something new but wasn’t acting lethargic in any way. The next day, Mom woke up and took their dog out for her morning walk. Halfway through the walk, she had a seizure and died instantly.

Although the mulch had NO warnings printed on the label, upon further investigation on the company’s web site,
they found the statement “This product is HIGHLY toxic to dogs and cats”. (more…)

Kindred Bee’s: Emotional Lives and Conscious Commons vs. Speciesism

Honey bee on lavender flower
Kudos to my dear friend and Professor Emeritus in Animal Behavior at the University of Colorado, Dr. Marc Bekoff for his blog post on the emotional lives of honeybees and the brains of jellyfish. Apparently, it has been shown that honeybees display increased expectation of bad outcomes in response to stress. In other words, as Dr. Bekoff states “they become pessimists”. Dr. Bekoff states that Melissa Bateson and colleagues have demonstrated that “they also show altered levels of neurochemicals (dopamine, serotonin and octopamine) that are associated with stress. Can I think of how many times I do that? Let me count the ways! Read his entire post for more information on this fascinating discovery.
In addition to Dr. Bekoff’s wise insights into the implications of these discoveries, I also agree with his perspective that it is time to let go of our “speciesism”.
Dr. Bekoff states “How exciting it is to learn more about animals who we typically write off as being “lower” and not especially intelligent or emotional. Fish also are far more complex than previously thought and are now considered to be very intelligent and sentient beings (see also). Indeed, drawing lines between “higher” and “lower” species, a practice called speciesism, is fraught with errors and shouldn’t be done. Animals do what they need to do to be card-carrying members of their species and we need to remember that numerous nonhuman animals outperform us in many different ways”.
In other words, we continue to have this “holier than though” attitude that other species and genus do not have thoughts or emotions or consciousness. The more we discover that other species have similar neurochemicals, the more realize how much of our emotional lives we all share. Perhaps we should shift from a philosophy of speciesism to a philosophy of Conscious Commons or Emotional Commons as I term these concepts. In other words, a recognition that we share a common foundation of consciousness and emotions with most animals, until proven otherwise.
A fascinating film just came out on bee’s titled ” Queen of the Sun’ that brilliantly illustrates our interconnectivity.
How remarkable the world might look to us if we acknowledged the emotional lives of animals.
What are your thoughts on this fascinating subject?