I’m sorry it’s taken me so long to write a new blog. I have been working with a ghost writter in Los Angeles on a book that I think will make up for all my off-line time and I think it will be well worth the wait!
In the mean time, there has been so much to report from the year 2011- so many things that I don’t even know where to begin. For starters, I moved from high up in the Rockies to a horse barn outside of Prescott, Az. Quite literally- I lived in the barn and if I opened up one of the windows, a horse could stick his head inside and eat hay in my living room!
What was so fascinating about this experience was that I was actually able to document a pack of coyotes on the ranch and the resident dogs communicating to one another. It was one of the most amazing things to hear- coyotes that learned to bark like dogs and dogs who learned how to yip!
I worked on the ranch with the horses, dogs and cats and from there, I was able to get a 5 acre property to run the K-9 Ranch Training Center in Prescott. This has given my clients amazing access who live in California and Nevada and I’ve had a lot of customers wanting to make the drive out here.
I have also had the opportunity to live side by side some of the world’s most venomous creatures- scorpions, rattlesnakes and tarantualas which has given me a lot of appreciation for these other species in the high desert.
I have been actively following the Mexican Grey Wolf program, attending meetings and staying in touch with what’s happening on the front lines.
In my spare time, I’ve done more natural hosemanship and have gone riding quite a bit in both Az. & Co.
This past year has certainly brought a lot of opportuniites for my on-going education
as well as taught me more about living in a new environment.
As we enter 2012 I think it’s important for me to talk a little about our relationship with the natural world. I know that times are tough for a lot of people out there and although I’ve seen both sides of the coin, I have also chosen to live a life closer to mother nature- whether in a tent, in a tee-pee or in a house at 9,000 ft.
I often talk a lot about the human species dllema as it relates to people’s pets but I think now it’s time to broaden that message to engulf many of our friends in forest, ocean, etc.
The one disadvantage our species has is our need for self fullfillment, growth and expansion. We seem to have a hard time with simplicity. It’s really hard for us all to slow down, make compassionate choices on a daily basis that really will be affecting the very lives that walk this earth in the future.
Non-human animals have this advatage. For example, the wolf who has done it’s job so well, that it was able to survive the ice age. Other animals are more intellegent than the human species in ways in which we cannot understand. For example, meet the dog who can sniff out a seizure well before it happens, meet the horse who can see the slightest movement in a tree or the shark who can smell 10,000 times more than we can ever comprehend!
If there’s one thing I have learned, is to view various creatures using these different senses at higher levels to actually learn from them. My brain may not be able to process a smell like a dog’s brain can, but I have figured out exactly what they are doing through their nose just by merely spending time watching them. I took this knowledge and used it to smell plants & trees in a way I had never thought of before which helps me understand the way they think to assit them in tracking, scent and search work at a higher level.
I believe that by allowing oneself to step into this role as an equal and sometimes a student, not as a superior, can bring more appreciation for the natural world. Animals do things for a reason- humans do things for a need and that need is no longer survival it’s consumption, growth and expansion. All resources are finite. They will not last forever and if there comes a time when you have to feed your family, step into the backyard and create a vegtable garden, it’s a step towards getting back in touch with the natural world.
Change can be terrifying but also at the same time an opportunity for a new beginning.
It is my hope that through everything that is going on in our economic climate, we can all get back to the simple things in life because that’s what helps species survive in the long haul. I believe we are on the verge of something great that has already started to be more concious of our environment, the choices we make and why having other animals around such as wolves, mountain lions, sharks, coyotes, etc. is so important. I encourage all who wish for adventure to embrace each circumstance, look for the good in everything and take great appreciation for our mammal and non-mamal friends as we can certainly learn a lot from them!
Best to you and your dog (or wolf/wolf-dog!) from Prescott, Az.