Animal and Human Teachers

When I was on Karen Hagar’s show Fog City Psychic (you can listen to it here, if you’re interested: ) Karen asked me about the role pets play in our lives. She talked about their capacity to demonstrate unconditional love.

I brought up animals as teachers.

Animals play a key role in human evolution, physical, psychological and spiritual. Physically and psychologically, there’s already a lot of scientific data out there, studies showing that petting a dog can lower blood pressure and release endorphins, anthropologists who notice a link in the timing when wolves (future dogs) and horses came to be domesticated, and how the major changes in the size of the human brain coincide with these events. One theory I’ve heard is that with animal helpers, humans needed less of their brain to process environmental / sensory information, what with dogs and horses assisting with hunting, guarding and working. This facilitated the development of the frontal lobes / cortex.

The same theory suggests the corresponding change in the wolves/dogs brains that occurred at the same time – the reduction in the frontal lobes or “intellectual” part of the brain, and a further development in the parts of the brain which process sensory information – facilitates the dog’s evolution into the multi-talented species they’ve become.

I’m no scientist, and this is my blog, so I relieve myself of the responsibility of researching the exact source of this theory which my brain is dredging up, but I’m pretty sure it’s either Animals in Translation, a book written by an autistic woman (who doesn’t believe in telepathic animal communication, for the record, but whose experience as an autistic woman sheds a lot of light on the animal experience) and Merle’s Door: Lessons from a freethinking dog a book written by a travel writer and nature enthusiast. Both of these books are meticulously sourced, and in any case they’re both excellent reads for animal lovers and ample sources for studies supporting the correlation between animal-human physical and psychological development.

The field that really interests me is the role of animals in human spiritual development, particularly their role as teachers and healers. Why do animals come into life to end up in a lab? Why would they put up with that? Are species of wildlife abandoning our planet? Do animals incarnate to evolve themselves spiritually, just as we’re doing, or is it all about human evolution (as some people seem to conclude?) Do some of us have soul contracts with our pets? (Yes we do!) Has the consciousness in an animal body ever incarnated as a different species? As human? Aliens? Have we, humans, ever been animals on earth in past lives?

The roosters at a friend’s farm believe that it is their job to raise the sun with their crowing each morning, and to set the resonance of their bravery and protection around the flock for the day.

The sea lions near my house bark in loud, eerily harmonious choirs all night in the winter, and they say it’s to set the vibration of the air to a healthy ressonance. (It is also territorial: my spot-My Spot-MY SPOT!!! Sometimes it sounds like a west-side story gang-war, rival groups of sea lions jockying for the best docks at the fish plant. A sea lion’s roar will shake our house to the roof and jolt us out of a dead sleep – they’re fearsome and impressive animals when they want to be.)

Many pets consider their person to be their job – they came into life to help that person (or a child in the family), through the lessons of being present, offering love, or offering behavior (or misbehavior) which requires the person to grow.

A good example of the last scenario is my present dog, Happy. He came into my life three years ago, shortly before we moved out to the coast. I believed I was accepting a year-old dog from a good home who could no longer care for him due to a busy work schedule. I didn’t realize until later that Happy would actually be more work and a greater challenge than my rescue cattle dog Mocha.

Happy wasn’t a bag dog when he came to live with us, he was a very good dog, a very honest dog with an extremely limited perspective of the world and so he responded to almost everything with dominance, fear and aggression.

I’d never had a dog bite me before – and I’d worked at an animal hospital for five years. Happy nailed not only me, but Sweetie several times over several months, drawing blood. The first time I gave him a bath, I was shocked to discover he was skin and bones under his fluffy fur. His first Mom had been ignorantly feeding him kibbles and bits ADULT food since he was 8 weeks old. He had never seen a vet, even though she’d paid almost $1,000 for him, a mixed breed dog bred by an unscrupulous or ignorant breeder feeding the demand for purse dogs. Since he got almost no exercise, he had no muscle tone and no appetite to eat his calorie-nil crap food and consequently he had a very imbalanced mind.

He spent a lot of time in his first year with us snarling at Sweetie, being possessive of me, peeing inappropriately, throwing temper tantrums – and I didn’t believe dogs were capable of throwing fits just like spoiled children, but they are.

Thank heaven for Mocha, or Happy might never have understood how a dog is supposed to behave. Dogs learn from watching each other. Most animals learn by modeling the behavior of their peers (and humans, for that matter, do the same thing!) One of the best ways to teach a rescue dog how to release his issues is to pair him up with a well-balanced, calm dog who will kindly ignore his transgressions while modeling appropriate behavior.

Mocha and Happy, shortly after we adopted Happy. Mocha says, “I put up with him for YOU, Mom!” See the tension in his posture, his closed mouth? See the difference in the tension between Mocha’s relaxed ears and Happy’s tense ears and eyes?

Looking back on the subsequent years of helping Happy recover from his first year of life, Sweetie and I realize that we weren’t so much teaching Happy, he was teaching us. He taught us about patience, tolerance, self-discipline (it takes a lot of self-discipline to insist a cute 10lb dog remain on the floor because he has dominance issues to overcome.)

Happy, several months later. See how his ears and eyes are relaxed? His mouth is relaxed?

Leo, my tabby cat who I’ve had since I was 19, wants to say hello:

He doesn’t contribute to the blog much, since his main role is to be supportive and grounding to me. He’s a wonderful cat, and he doesn’t want to be forgotten, but he doesn’t have a lot to say. My job is to purr and snuggle, especially when Mom goes to sleep. I fix her energy so she sleeps better.

Sunshine, on the other hand, is our extremely talkative and opinionated white cat. She is one of only two animals who have ever talked to me about life on other planets. She came into our life specifically for Sweetie, who she revealed has a specific contract with white cats. Apparently, Sweetie had insisted on the support of white cats throughout her lifetime as a condition of incarnation on earth one last time. When I said this to Sweetie, she realized that she had indeed, always been surrounded by white cats from the time she was an infant. She had actually believed white cats were quite common – they’re not that common. People usually react with surprise and awe when they meet Sunshine.

Sunshine also initiated our first conversation on the coat colour cats choose to wear sometimes to denote their spiritual mission on earth, and in this previous entry, she talks about her past life as Queen Ann of Bohemia’s cat:

Our white cat Sunshine is a special cat. She is quite the talker. She wanted my partner to understand that she had been her cat in a past life.

She then shared with us a slew of other lives she’s had. Sunshine has been a stray cat herself many times. Stray cats have very short lives, but she also saw it as “taking a break”. I guess looking after people is hard work for animals!

She also shared that she is a very wise cat, and we should ask her for business advice. She said she advised queens in the past. Then she said “Queen Anne, younger girl Margaret.”

Sunshine showed me a velvet blue pillow with white silk rope trim, that she had blue eyes and wore a blue sapphire collar. She gave me the impression that she was a cat version of the queen’s ladies-in-waiting.

She showed me mountains, and the vista looked like Switzerland to me, but I also heard England.

My partner did a little research this week and found out that there was a Queen Anne in history. She had a younger sister named Margaret.

Queen Anne lived in Bohemia, which is a country with mountainous vistas like Switzerland. She then married King Richard the second, of England, and moved there. Just look at all of that blue velvet:

And get this: the coat of arms of Bohemia is a white cat:

You can read the whole entry here:

That kind of blew us away, that this random stuff I was hearing from Sunshine suddenly fell into place after Sweetie did a bit of researching.

Well earlier this week, since Sweetie and I seem to be on a bit of a crystal tear, we were floored again by another synchronicity… Sweetie says:

So, I discovered something pretty amazing this morning.

I was looking through the crystal book this morning and happened to check out the entry on Moldavite (a crystal said to have extra-terrestrial origins.)

Anyway, I actually read the entry on it, and this meteor it came in on was HUGE. It is thought to have penetrated straight through the Earth’s crust down to the molten layers underneath. Apparently, scientist think that the impact of this meteor was sufficient to cause the molten magma inside the Earth to slosh around, and to cause a reversal in the earth’s magnetic poles.

So then when the meteor broke through the Earth, all of this volcanic glass started raining down, and that’s the Moldavite. The Moldavite might be part of the Earth, or part of the meteorite, or a mixture of both.

Guess where this meteor landed?


It basically formed the Bohemian Plateau, and the surrounding mountains. The whole area is covered in this stuff, which explains a bit more about what our alien kitty was doing there. 🙂

Also Moldavite has links to the Holy Grail legend, and goddess worship. Moldavite amulets were found alongside the Venus of Willendorf.

Well, this entry could just branch out onto many different digressions, and I’m not sure how to wrap it up – but I need to wrap it up so I can tell you about the energy shifting pendant I now have from Tracey Rae Moore along with the introductory class I attended last night.

Tracey is a wonderful and talented woman who hails from a long legacy of healers. I am truly grateful to have met her, and I know we’re going to stay in touch.

If you’re skeptical about crystal healing / energy shifting, Tracey is a great person to work with. Her talent is honed and powerful enough to facilitate a real and noticeable change, enough for most people with a healthy sense of realism who also have curiosity and an open mind.

Meanwhile, you can visit Tracey’s website and read about her and her work with crystals and pendants, and feel free to ask any questions about her and her work that may occur to you as you read:

That’s all for today folks. Phew!

3 thoughts on “Animal and Human Teachers

  1. I’ve been intrigued by Tracey Rae Moore ever since you first mentioned the pendant you’d ordered so I’m glad to have more information about her. Can you share more about the class or about your pendant? You’ve mentioned the pendant briefly a couple of times, but I’d love it if you could share more. (Hmm, I just visited her site — I’m doing a ten-week color meditation course right now and this week’s color is red; it’s interesting to see how much the color red figures into her healing and her presence as a healer.)

    I’d come across Temple Grandin’s books when I was researching animal communication books a few years ago, but put them aside (to get/read later if I had a chance) for other books — at the rate my “to read” list keeps growing, I may never get to them. LOL I’d never heard of “Merle’s Door” before but it looks pretty interesting. (Oh, hey, another book for that “to read” list. 😉 )


    • Ha! I knew when I mentioned them that your reading list would lengthen. I’m still working through the books acquired from the spring, and Sweetie has given me a few too.

      There’s a whole entry coming on tracey and the pendant – I just write entries over the course of several days sometimes, in spare moments… which is why some of them can seem a bit random.


  2. I love that photo of Sunshine. 🙂 It occurs to me we don’t have that many of her though! I’d like to get one of her outside sunning her belly — that move really says “Sunshine” to me. (Plus, cats laying on their backs = hilarious).


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