If You Had To Choose Between Your Dog And Your Phone, Would You?
To really understand our dogs we must first observe them, which is the dog guardian’s version of listening extremely carefully - and is something you can start right now. Stop reading for a moment and look up. What is your dog doing, how is their body language looking, did they look back at you? How are their eyes, do they look comfortable? How often do you just stop and look at your dog in this way?
Observation is so powerful, and listening is so effective but most of us are not great at either. It’s generally not our fault though, it’s the monkey mind. The human mind is a master distractor. The world we live in is a massive advertisement and we are vulnerable to all that – the advertisers speak straight to our monkey minds and often we subconsciously respond. We have become mindless and if we don’t address it, we can end up going through life with a three second attention span. Instead of watching our dogs we can end up looking at our dog on a walk, having an intrusive thought about something online, pulling out our phone, staring at it and completely missing how our dog is feeling or responding to something that has just appeared in the environment. Does that ring any bells for you? It’s a common behaviour in this world of distractions, the distractions are created to make us look at our phones regularly. And if it is you, now that you know, you can stay aware and stop before your hand reaches your phone. You can watch your dog instead.
If asked whether you would choose your dog or your phone, it’s highly likely you wouldn’t choose your phone, so why let the monkey mind do it for you?
To hear much more about the monkey mind, consider my book The Dog Professional's Survival Guide.