National Puppy Day

Today is national puppy day so I wanted to share a bit about my little buddy. Cash came into my life 11 years ago when he was one year old. He had never been in a house before and at that time he lived in an outdoor kennel in northern Cape Breton. He was pretty scrawny and a little beat up. His ears were chewed on by other dogs and he wasn’t getting enough food. There were about 30 dogs in the kennel with him and he’s quite small. I was told that he was named Cash because the folks that had him were planning to use him as a stud and make money off him. They decided against him because he doesn’t have the typical colouring of a Boston terrier, which when “perfect” have a white collar. 

Cashie has been a difficult dog in that he has never been able to be around other dogs. I’ve tried working with him over the years and hired three different trainers st various times trying to get him over his dog issues. It never happened. As much as I tried it never happened. I finally gave up when he was about 10 and made a deal with him. He doesn’t have to be around dogs anymore and we can just enjoy each other. And we do. 

Cashie has a heart murmur and heart disease. He takes medication for those. He’s got one ear that flops over from having broken blood vessels that never repaired. He has one eye that looks off to the side. He also has a salivary gland in his throat that is swelled and makes him look like he has a goiter. And I love every bit of it. He’s a fun loving little guy still. He’s getting a little blind and doesn’t hear me so well anymore. And the other day he was standing in front of a wall instead of the door to go out. He can’t always tell where his toy went when I throw it. He’s pretty adorable. And he couldn’t care less about all his issues. 

God bless dogs. They have a lot to teach us!

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It’s Spring and that means it’s kapha season!

dosha elementsA dosha, put very simply, is a makeup of elements that are found in nature (ether, air, water, fire and earth). These elements are found in everyone as well as our food, the air around us, the exercise we do and more. The three doshas are:

  • Vata: made up of air and ether
  • Pitta: made up of fire and water
  • Kapha: made up of earth and water

Each season of the year is governed by an ayurvedic dosha. Winter is a time of vata – it tends to be dry, cold and dark. These are all aspects of vata. As we move into spring, we move into a time that is more wet and warmer. These are aspects of kapha. Ayurveda seeks to bring balance and that means when one element is at its high point, we offset with the opposite. Foods that are known to be kaphic are warm, heavier foods – think comfort foods. Stews, cooked vegetables, mashes etc. Because we now want to start balancing the kapha dosha we need to start eating the opposite of this – uncooked foods like salads, lighter foods – fruits, vegetables, grains, sweets like honey, spicy foods are good too. This is also a time of year that activities should become more vigorous. If you are a yogini, vinyasa or power yoga can be great in spring to get your energy moving. Think in terms of coming out if the hibernation of winter and getting yourself moving again.

Now, if you’re like me and live in a place where the spring equinox doesn’t necessarily line up with spring-like weather, you may need a couple more weeks of vata pacifying time. Keep eating your comfort foods, doing your restorative practices and keep yourself grounded. You’ll know when it’s time to give yourself a kick in the butt.

Do you know your dosha? You can take a quiz to find out here: The Chopra Center. Knowing your own dosha can help you to know when you need to be extra careful about balancing your elements based on the season or time of day.

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