First of all I want to congratulate you, the reader, for taking an interest in this line of “work”; helping others and trying somehow to be responsible in the making of this planet a better place to live. The worst epidemic that the human race is facing today is not Cancer, AIDS, or even the raising crime rates. The worst epidemic we face is apathy.
I am not suggesting that everybody out there take matters into their own hands, nor saying that we are all doomed, that the system has failed us, is keeping us all down, and humanity sucks. What I am trying to convey here is something very simple yet powerful. As long as there are people who care, somebody that is willing to put even a moment of their time to interact with the environment and change it for the better, we are moving onto a greater place.
I am a firm believer of the notion that what you resist, persists, and that the emotions and expectations you put out there end up becoming your reality. So in general, while I do not recommend ignoring the bad things out there, I recommend to prepare for them while emphasizing in the positive side of it. You get more done this way, and live a happier life with less burn outs.
I am not going to lie to you, this way of thinking takes time to develop. I’m constantly working on keeping myself in the sunny side of things. As most things, it takes discipline and training, but the pay off is incredible! It doesn’t take a happy childhood, a cushy life, or a drama free life to think this way. I can tell you by experience: I’m originally from a small Island in Spain, grew up in a third world country watching my dad work so much that he lost himself in it, looking over my shoulder every time I walked out of the house, getting away alive after a few close calls, living behind bars in your own home to wake up one night with a gun to your head anyways. Home invasion, car jacking and more grim situations were part of my childhood, and a big influence in why I ended up working with personal protection dogs. I also left my family back in Spain and came by myself to this country with $50 to my name. It is because what I have experienced, and the fact that I did not let that get me down, that I was able to put myself trough college, and today, I am the young female owner of a successful top class K9 facility in an industry dominated by man. There is little that scares me now!
Before I wrote this article very few people had a clue about my rough experiences growing up, and a handful know the details. This is not because I work hard on suppressing it, but because simply put, it is in the past, and I prefer to remember the good things instead. Growing up having a jungle as your back yard was the best! My love for animals was present since a very early age, I would get lost in the garden for hours and got scolded many times for feeding sugar to the ants. I had all kinds of pets, including a Capuchin monkey. I had the privilege of helping many wild animals that manage somehow to cross my path while injured, and the luck of having some kind of internal guidance on what to do because I swear, I have no idea how I knew at such an early age to do the things I did to get them better (nope, I did not have Google back then).
My hope by writing in S.T.A.N.D is to give you some tools for empowerment. My connection is strong with nature, and animals are my forte, my passion, so this is the area from where I will bring my expertise. I will be talking about personal protection dogs, their roles as defenders and their use in patrols, training, management, the bond between humans and animals, service and therapy dogs, rescue, capture and transportation of an animal in danger, pet first aid and emergency protocols, animal shelters, what you can do to help, and more. If you can think of anything that might be of interest for our community I welcome suggestions! Send me a message!
“The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated”-Mohandas Gandhi