MAGGIE: the dog who changed my life

MAGGIE: the dog who changed my life
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Thursday, May 7, 2015

So Many Dogs, So Little Time

YOU can Recover From the Loss of Your Beloved Canine Companion

Maggie & me days before she died
"'Older dogs that have lived their entire lives with someone are taken to humane societies and rescue groups for reasons as numerous as dog breeds. They have the hardest time being adopted,' Dawn Kairns writes-- in one of the best of all the dog books I've read yet -- in a market full of grieving pet owners immortalizing their pet with a book. This one is filled with insight and wisdom.

'I have this feeling that our special animal friends find their way back to us after they pass on,' Dawn Kairns tells us. Pet owners the world over will believe it, or want to believe it. After losing her beloved canine companion Maggie, Kairns delved into Jung and cited evidence details about Maggie that support this consoling theory: 'The collective unconscious is where we come from, we return to it when we can, and we ultimately return to it when we die.'

"I had just finished reading another dog lover's lament, Mark J. Ascher's "Humphrey Was Here." Interesting contrasts between the two dog owners. Ascher is more of a skeptic. This sounds like me: 'If it was God's will, I wanted to know how he dispersed his tragedies -- an immediate investigation of (God's) distribution system was in order. If I had bad karma, I demanded to know what I had done in another life ... If everything happened for a reason, I wanted to know the reason now, when the pain was intense. I wanted answers; I kept coming up with questions.'

But Kairns offers that spiritual consolation I can only hope-wish-hope for: '...there’s more to this world than what we experience with our limited five senses. Can it be that the spirit world is right here, but most of us lack the extrasensory abilities to perceive it?'

The book opens in a present-tense account of life with Maggie, the dog who is so much more than a pet. Later we get to the "if only I'd known" and "what if" stuff, thoughts we all suffer. One factor contributing to Maggie's untimely demise may have been the thing we believe is best for our pets. My own (former) vet scoffed at me when I pointed out the #1 ingredient in Science Diet is grain. Which one of us got the college degree in veterinary science, he said? Well, call me impudent, but I noticed our dogs fared better when they sneaked out and found fresh venison. No, it never became a staple of their diet, but their droppings clearly showed that fresh venison was easier on their digestive system. Unfortunately, their love of people food and their ability to get it (mastery of the cute, pleading face) also may have led to their pancreative failure at ages 13 and 14. For large Collies, maybe the life expectancy is rarely much better than that. And if you asked Blaise and Bailey, I'm sure they'd have opted for shorter lives than lives without chicken, roast beef, pizza and the occasional cheese puff.

Page after page of this book "speaks" to me as a mother of three and a former companion of two majestic, nearly human Collies. I kept Kindle-sharing lines that had me nodding in agreement or empathy. Rather than retype them here, I'll trust readers to find the page of Kindle Highlights.

I'm skeptical about some of the reincarnation theories but very hopeful that we will indeed meet up again with our lost loved ones, canine, feline, human, equine, or whatever, in a next life. Those who experience the "evidence" are blessed.

This book delivers the happy ending of a new adventure with another dog. So many bereft dog lovers say they'll never get another dog because of the pain of losing one again, or because no dog can replace the one who died. There are so many, many dogs out there, on death row in animal shelters, awaiting adoption. No one with the means to care for a dog has to go dog-less.

My husband is in no hurry to get another dog, but I'm ready for one to turn up, scouring the Rescue sites and local shelter listings, watching and waiting. Meanwhile, I'm one of those strangers who accosts dog owners in public: “I need a dog fix." Mine died. (Or, "We’re here on vacation, and mine is at home.”) Thanks to all of you who indulge me and let me greet your dog.

NOTE: this is one Kindle-Share that bears repeating far and wide --

Maggie loved the switch from dog food to raw
'There are now several brands of high-quality pet foods made with human-grade protein as the first ingredient and without by-products or chemical preservatives. These can be found at smaller holistic pet food stores and include brands such as Canidae, Innova, Natural Balance, and Chicken Soup for the Dog Lovers Soul, among others. Flint River Ranch products can be ordered online.'

Kairns recommends a diet of raw ground turkey, vegetables, grains, and beans, adding vitamin supplements and a nutritional powder of kelp, nutritional yeast, bone meal, and lecithin.

I would add that if your dog has allergies, inform the delivery guys who offer a treat to every dog who greets them. One of our Collies tested allergic to beef, brewer's yeast, and a gazillion other ingredients in dog food and treats."

Posted by Dawn Kairns and taken directly from Carol Kean's Amazon Review. I added the photos. To Carol, my heartfelt thanks. She captures the essence of MAGGIE better than anyone to date in both her above review of MAGGIE and on the Kindle Highlights page:

the ability exists in all of us to intuitively communicate with nature and animals. It’s “the first language, the foundation of spoken and written words, and the common link Read more Kindle Highlights quotes here.