Based on Vancouver Island, BC, Canada, Sparkles and Dirt is a blog by Louise Brunet. Her posts explore the beauty and the struggles we all encounter and how we can, just maybe, show up for all of it with compassion and grace.

You want me to what?

You want me to what?

Some animal communications make me laugh out loud. The difference in perspective that animals have compared to humans can lead to misunderstandings and unexpected situations. The animals wouldn’t describe it as funny; they might be mildly amused. They are often curious.

When I communicate with an animal, the nature of the exchange is usually quite straightforward and concise. No extra small talk, no formalities or human ways conversation. 

One cat comes to mind in particular. Teddy. I was doing a follow up communication with a cat that visits a woman’s home here in Victoria (Josie), but is not her cat. As far as we can tell from what he shared with me, he roams free in the neighborhood, fends for himself, and likes it that way. He seemed to be developing a liking for hanging out with Josie though. He began spending more time in her home. She loved this but found that Teddy was rough and often scratched her or clawed at her.

I asked him about this.

He was surprised that this was an issue.

I explained that humans have delicate skin, not fur like cats, and that we scratch easily. I acknowledged that he was used to being outside and fending for himself, being ‘rough and ready and quick.’ He didn’t see why scratching was any problem at all. The feeling he sent me was that this topic was of no interest to him, he didn’t see why it I was bringing it up.

I asked him if Josie was gentle with him. He immediately sent me a feeling of love and caring. So I decided to suggest that whenever he was with Josie, he notice how sweet and loving she is and then remember to try being gentle back. He said ok, he would try it. And sure enough, she reported to me that he was much more gentle and had even begun sitting on her lap sometimes for snuggles. No scratches!

Another issue with Teddy was on occasional cold nights when he stayed at Josie’s house to sleep. At some point during the night he would decide to go back outside. In order to get Josie’s attention, he would knock something over causing a loud crash or make a racket with the window blinds. For Josie, it was a harsh way to wake up in the middle of the night. I asked Teddy if he would meow instead. His response was to send me a feeling of “What the heck would I do that for?” He just couldn’t see this point of view at all.

Teddy.png

I explained that humans are used to verbal communication and assured him that she would respond to a few meows. Again his response was akin to “what I’m doing now works just fine, I don’t need to meow.”

I thought I would try one more time, I suggested that he TRY meowing to see what would happen next. Just to test it out. He seemed to agree with this so I left it at that. Josie reported that the next time he stayed overnight, he walked over beside her bed and meowed! Of course she quickly let him out.

A couple of days later, he was with her again. She said,

“… he rested for a bit by my feet as I sat on the couch. Then he sat up, looked at me, and with a sort-of surprised expression on his face said, "Meow" (he never talks otherwise!). I stood up and he walked to the patio door and I let him out :-)”

I love a happy ending!

Animals don’t know all of our human ways and idiosyncrasies, just like we don’t know all of theirs. Our perspectives are often very different. This is why communication is so important and has such beautiful outcomes. 

Note: In animal communication I dan't "tell an animal what to do", they have free will just like we do, but I can make a suggestion or ask the animal to try something and then leave it up to them. Often just explaining a situation and understadnign both the human and the animal perspective bring about a good outcome.

To Lose Our Minds

To Lose Our Minds

Mirror Mirror

Mirror Mirror