THIS WEEK’S FULL MOON: NURTURE YOURSELF WITH NATURE!

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THIS WEEK’S FULL MOON: NURTURE YOURSELF WITH NATURE!

Lunar events are full of excitement, self awareness and shifting. This full moon is no different! On Wednesday, June 27th, 2018, we will witness the moon wax full in the sign of Capricorn. As with all full moons, the moon opposes the sun in the night sky, casting both a magnifying of the moon and the sun. In this particular case, the moon waxes full in Capricorn with its sun in its opposing sign of Cancer.

The illumination patterns of the sun and moon during a full moon are both witnessed in the physical as well as spiritual realms. Not only do we see the moon at its fullest, but the sun magnifies its energies here on Earth. This means that the Capricorn energy will be at its all time high for the year. This is a prominent configuration for any earth sign such as Capricorn, Taurus and Virgo. For anyone born of these three signs, this full moon will create a comfortable atmosphere. Earth signs are generally quite grounded and feel more at home in nature or rooted in one place. Especially for the above three earth signs, this full moon will underline the need for grounding and rooting one’s body in one place. For the rest of the zodiac population, we will also feel the pull to root ourselves into the Earth. We may find that this is an excellent time to take part in ‘Earthing” or “grounding” rituals. These rituals will entail removing our shoes and planting our feet into Mother Earth, allowing ourselves to interconnect with her nurturing and revitalizing energy.

Capricorns are often empowered leaders. This moon will remind us that we are empowered to choose the life we want for ourselves. This Capricorn influence can stir up self-confidence in order to create the life we desire. We may feel a surge of powerful ‘inner knowing’ and suddenly have clarity on how to navigate our inner compasses to achieve our innermost desires. Let us not allow this clarity to fall by the wayside, as the Capricorn full moon allocates our wants and needs to be rooted in solid ground. This rooting will make for a balanced approach to manifesting the life of our dreams.

Capricorns tend to do well within a family unit as opposed to flying solo. They appreciate their abilities to care for others, both financially and physically. They feel it is their duty to keep the house and home and to provide for those within. This family-oriented nature of the Capricorn is shared by its polar opposite sign; Cancer. Both of these signs thrive within the home and family which makes this full moon period the perfect time to focus on caring for loved ones. We will surely find this task to be very fulfilling.

Where Capricorn and Cancer differ is their approach to problem solving. Whereas Capricorns tend to take a logical, more grounded approach to life, Cancers are quite heart-centered and emotionally driven. As the full moon looms, this difference in approach can become magnified both within our own hearts as well as between ourselves and others. We may find that within the framework of our self-growth, this lunar period may have us at odds with ourselves, torn between logic and feeling; head and heart. Because both Capricorn and Cancer ae highlighted at this time, we may find that we are fighting a losing battle and it may be best to wait until the full moon passes to find out which angle (head or heart) takes precedence over the other. Once the battling energies have left the atmosphere we may find ourselves more clearheaded and able to make a decision.

Conversely, this Capricorn/Cancer combination can be our ally. This alignment has the capacity to shed light on how to work through our emotional imbalances from a practical angle. For those who suffer from a broken heart, disappointment and any other personal struggle, this full moon is a wonderful time to start anew. It is a good time to shake off the heartache and begin a new path from a logical, detached angle.

The opposing forces of sun and moon, Cancer and Capricorn, allow us to distinguish where our lives are out of balance. Are we living our lives in emotional imbalance? Are we too grounded and logical, not permitting ourselves to let go and enjoy life? Maintaining a balance between joy and grounding is a prominent aspect to living a healthy lifestyle. This moon highlights the path to tread in order to find the balance between the two worlds.

With Cancer as the luminous sun sign, nurturing self and family is a must. Be sure to take the time to check in on loved ones, but take the time to nurture self! Whether it’s a walk in the forest or reading a book by the beach, the Capricorn moon combined with the Cancer sun will have us deeply longing to nurture ourselves with nature. Take the time to do so. You’ll be very glad you did!

 

AGING ANIMALS: 5 SIMPLE WAYS TO REDUCE/PREVENT COMPANION ANIMAL ARTHRITIS

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5 EASY STEPS TO ARTHRITIS TREATMENT AND PREVENTION

When it comes to chronic ailments in animals, many are aware that the vast majority of causes are environmental. Many animal guardians assume that chronic illness is a part of the aging process and that it cannot be avoided. What many may not be as aware of is that the greater part of these ailments can be easily preventable. Companion animal arthritis is no different.

As with almost all chronic pain, arthritis is highly correlated to an animal’s diet. Many animals suffer from genetically weakened immune systems and genetic chronic inflammation. In all cases, an animal’s diet is a key component in healing or deteriorating the physical body. Though there are various types of arthritis and chronic inflammation that arise from a range of origins, they all have one universal property; with a few lifestyle changes, each type of arthritis symptoms can be significantly lessened or altogether preventable. The following is a list of five readily available means of reducing and/or preventing companion animal arthritis.

1)      Diet Change- the vast majority of processed foods contain significant numbers of inflammatory ingredients. Just like humans, companion animals’ bodies must be nurtured with whole foods, not preservatives and by-products. What many companion animal care givers fail to realize is that even the expensive ‘prescription’ diet science based foods are among the worst brands for listing preservatives and by-products as first ingredients on their labels. Without getting into the gruesome details, these brands as well as other nutrient-poor foods do not contain ingredients that will nurture an animal’s body to health but rather will weaken the immune system and generate a body that is devoid of nutrient retention. The longer term effects of this type of anti-inflammatory diet include; arthritis, painful inflammation, unnecessary shedding, obesity, severe dehydration, kidney stones, bladder crystals, certain types of cancers ad early stage organ failure. By changing an animal’s diet to a nutrient-rich regimen, we will give them their best shot at a long term life free of the pain and suffering of inflammation. Nutrient rich diets include; raw food, cooked meats and steamed veggies as opposed to store bought processed foods. Excluding these whole food sources, there are also several types of nutrient rich store bought foods that are far higher in quality than science based diets which are categorically full of preservatives and by-products. Ask your local Animal Communicator or holistic vet which types of foods are best suited to your companion animals.

2)      Yucca Root- Yucca plant has healing properties within it that invoke the body’s natural corticosteroids. When the body suffers from painful inflammation, naturally most would be inclined to consume anti-inflammatory medication. Many of these medications do not work with the body but rather against it; breaking down the immune system little by little. As opposed to medical steroids such as prednisone that will break down proper immune function, Yucca Root will work with the body to promote a healthy functioning immune system.

3)      Add anti-inflammatory foods to diet- Returning to the diet once again, any animals who suffer from arthritis and other chronic inflammation may experience a reduction in painful symptoms by adding simple anti-inflammatory foods to the diet. Whether adding these anti-inflammatory foods to processed diets or on their own as a meal, any addition of these foods is likely to reduce symptoms and treat the root cause of the inflammation. Of course, most cats will be far more finicky about their food than will dogs. Whether it is a dog or cat in question, locating appropriate anti-inflammatory foods will encourage a healthier physical state for our animal friends. There is a wide selection of anti-inflammatory food options for our animal friends. Some of these options include; whole salmon (not canned), sardines (fresh), steamed broccoli, steamed celery, cucumber, several types of nuts and seeds. It is also important to note that adding omegas will increase digestive health, thereby encouraging a healthy weight. It is a good idea to consult with your holistic veterinarian to find out which combinations of anti-inflammatory foods are best for your animal friends.

4)      Fish Oil/Omegas 3 & 6 supplement- Adding sources of omegas to an animal’s diet is crucial in terms of reduction of inflammation. There are innumerable sources of omegas that are readily available. Advocating for whole foods once again, feeding natural sources of omegas are often more nutritious than adding a food supplement. For example. Adding fresh fish to the diet will be a healthier option than fish oil alone. Though fish oil is a concentrated form of the omegas found in fish, the actual food will have other healthy components within it to nurture and moisturize the animal’s body. When an animal eats heavily processed and refined foods, these foods strip the body of moisture. Despite the lower grade and science based diets listing omegas as sourced within these foods, it is almost always too minimal of an amount to treat any type of moisture loss or lack of retention of moisture in the joints, skin, coat and organs. By supplementing the diet with wild salmon oil, for example, we are allowing the animal’s body to retain the necessary components of their food in order to have optimally functioning organs and tissues. Be sure to supplement fish oils that have specified fish origins as opposed to labels that just read “fish”. Any labels that read ‘fish’ without specification are likely nutrient poor, polluted fish sources.

5)      Coconut oil- Coconut oil is a highly effective and tasty addition to an animal’s diet. In addition to its nearly miraculous anti-inflammatory properties, coconut oil will keep our animals feeling younger and more playful. For a more complete list of the many benefits of coconut oil for companion animals, view: https://soulsticespirit.com/2017/05/07/the-abcs-of-coconut-oil-for-cats-and-dogs/ Adding coconut oil to an animal’s daily regimen will help to both reduce genetic inflammation as well as prevent much of the hardship of later-onset inflammation. As with all holistic remedies, coconut oil must be given in small doses over a longer period to take effect. This is why beginning our animals on a coconut oil regimen at younger ages is a smart idea. This way, they will have had years to accumulate the added moisture in their joints and organs before aging sets in. If we are only learning about the many benefits of coconut oil as our animals are already aging, this oil can still have an anti-inflammatory effect over a shorter period of time.

 

As our animals age, the more moisture we can induce in our animal friends’ joints, bones and organs, the more notable their quality of life will increase. As animal’s age, their bodies are also lesser able to retain moisture. Without moisture, organs shut down, ranges of motion become decreased and quality of life diminishes. The important thing is that we, as caregivers of animals recognize that we can make a grand difference in the lives of our beloved animal friends by understanding how food and diet impacts an animal’s quality of life. We must acknowledge, too, that moisture is the body’s best friend and do all we can to promote a healthy and well rounded quality of life for those who are unable to do so for themselves.

ARE YOU MISSING YOUR DOG’S CALMING SIGNALS?

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ARE YOU MISSING YOUR CANINE COMPANION’S CALMING SIGNALS?

All species communicate within their own and toward others. As pack animals, dogs have their own unique way of communicating with each other through body language. Their body language communication is unique to their species however dogs will also communicate these signals to their human family members. This is because, as many of us know, dogs view all of the members of their household as their pack.

Dogs use communication signals to let other dogs know that they are friendly. Communication within their species is crucial to the survival of the pack. These signals can be used for hunting, to raise babies and to alert each other to ‘calm down’. In general, dogs will not seek out conflict within their pack. In the pack dog mind, any conflict can cause injury to one of their members, therefore weakening the pack.

These communication signals are effective tools for dogs to communicate with other species, particularly humans. In the dog mind, they believe that all species will inherently understand and receive these signals. It is quite easy for humans to miss these signals from our dogs of we do not make ourselves aware of them. If they go unnoticed for too long, the dog may cease trying.

While many humans tend to get upset with their dogs for certain behaviours, they may be missing their dogs signals that ‘there’s no need to yell’, or ‘calm down, I understand’ and the dog will get punished anyway. This can lead to sadness and overall frustration within the dog. In some cases, this frustration can lead the dog to act out or to become aggressive.

One such example may be when a human calls his dog to come to him.  He has learned in class that he needs to sound strict and dominant so that the dog will understand who is in charge. The dog
finds dad´s voice to be aggressive.  The dog instantly gives dad a calming signal in order to make him aware that he need not be aggressive. Perhaps the dog will lick his own nose, yawn, turn his head away. This will result in the human becoming angry, as he perceives the dog as being pig-headed, stubborn and disobedient. The human then punishes the dog for using his calming signals to calm him.

Outlined below are several of the approximately 30 dog calming signals to pay attention to. The more we understand dog body language and behaviour the more harmonious our lives will be together.

YAWNING- When a dog feels threatened by yelling, loud arguing, aggressive behaviour, he will often yawn. When a person is leaning over him, when another dog or person is hurriedly or excitedly walking towards him, the dog often perceives such actions as threatening. He may yawn to let them know to calm, that their intensity is unnecessary.

TURNING HEAD AWAY- Often, when a dog is being scolded or is in the company of aggressive tones, s/he will turn her/his head away from the source. This is another sign that s/he is communicating calmness. S/he is letting the aggressor(s) know that their message is received and she meant no harm. Therefore she need not be punished. Or, she understands the aggressor’s message loud and clear and wishes to share this.

LICKING- A dog will give a quick lick of the face as a calming signal. This licking behaviour is its own type of unique licking only meant to diffuse a potentially confrontational situation. Interestingly, it is more notable behaviour on dogs whose faces are harder to read such as dogs with small noses or long haired dogs.

SNIFFING THE GROUND- Dogs, as a rule use their noses to obtain a wide variety of information. In almost any situation, a dog’s nose is his most powerful sense. However with respect to calming cues, when a dog lowers his nose toward the ground even slightly, this is a sign of calming behaviour. One example might be if a dog is in a crowded area and feels overwhelmed by all of the activity. If there are people or other dogs walking toward your dog, he may lower his nose slightly to let the others in his vicinity know that he “comes in peace’.

WALKING SLOWLY- In the dog mind, high speed is seen as a threat. Coming from dog or person (or other being), walking toward or beside at high speed can invoke the defense mechanism within the dog. This can trigger a calming signal; for example walking slowly. Particularly because the other being is in motion, the dog will have a reactive defense of movement as well. The slow walking is intended to let the other beings in motion know that he is peaceful.

WALKING IN A CURVE- When you call your dog, does she respond by coming toward you in a curve (or walking slowly as per the statement above)? If she does, this may be a reflection of your tone of voice. If you sound overly stern or authoritative, this curved walk may be a calming signal. Your dog my be letting you know that there is no need to be so commanding.
When a dog is introduced to another dog, she will often approach the other dog in a curve as opposed to straight on. This is because the dog feels that she does not want to pose a threat to the other dog. In fact, when humans force their dogs to meet in a straight line format, this makes the dogs feel very uncomfortable. It is important never to force a dog into a meeting and to let it happen naturally. It may help you, as well, to understand this behaviour when approaching any new dog. You may wish to greet the new dog from a curve instead of a straight line. This may help to assist the dog in being more comfortable and lesser threatened by you.

Calming signals coming from dogs can be subtle. It is of great benefit to pay close attention to how your dog reacts to you and other stimuli in her/his environment. These are but a few of the 30+ calming signals that dogs exhibit to each other and to humans. Once we have a solid understanding about what they are and when dogs use them, we may even be able to send them back to our canine companions. When we see our dogs giving us calming signals, we can take the time to lower our voices or carry a more peaceful demeanor. Additionally, by sending calming signals to our dogs, they will be grateful that we have learned their language. They will feel understood and comfortable in our homes and in our hearts. We will surely be creating a more harmonious environment for all!

DO YOU KNOW THIS LITTLE KNOWN SECRET CAT AND DOG FOOD COMPANIES NEGLECT TO TELL YOU?

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WHAT MARKETING COMPANIES NEGLECT TO TELL YOU

As guardians of our animal companions, we most often do our best to give them the best quality of life that we can.  Despite this common interest of cat and dog caregivers, many lack much information on the contrast between what their store bought food lacks and what the animal’s body actually needs in order to function at its healthiest.

One such prime example is an animal’s digestive health. When we examine the content of store bought foods (as opposed to raw or homemade) we will find that there is a wide variety of brands that claim to have adequate sources of fibre. What they do not tell you is that most of the sourced fibre in these foods is insoluble fibre. Within the spectrum of available processed foods; lowest to highest quality, there is a dire lack of soluble fibre.

The difference between soluble and insoluble fibre is simply that soluble fibre is digested along with the other food components. Once digested, it becomes a gel-like substance that coats the digestive tract to allow for a much easier time digesting food, processing and eliminating through softening the stool as it passes through the body. Insoluble fibre is found mainly in grains. While it does help the elimination process, it is geared toward passing stool more quickly through the body as opposed to allowing the nutrients of the food to be absorbed and stored in the body to optimise health.

Both of these fibres sound fairly effective so far, right? Well what many of these popular food brands neglect to tell you, the consumer, is that their sources of insoluble fibre are not from grains. They are not from wheat bran, vegetables or psyllium. They are from chicken beaks. They are from chicken feet. They are from sawdust. SAWDUST. Sure, chicken beaks are high in protein and fibre. But the protein in chicken beaks is keratin, the same proteins found on our hair, skin and nails. This protein is NOT a soluble form of protein. In fact, it does nothing but pass right through the digestive system unhinged, not allowing for any of it to be absorbed into the body to nurture and heal our animal friends. Further, the concept of adding sawdust to dog and cat food and passing it off as digestible fibre is outlandish and appalling.

With all of this misleading information, what happens to our animals? The simplest way to answer that would be to put ourselves in their position. What would happen to our bodies if daily, we consumed chicken beaks and sawdust in place of whole food fibre sources? To list a few side effects, we would surely be gassy, constipated, have irregular bowels, tummy aches, obesity and overall lethargy. The chronic pain and suffering that stems from obesity would be enough to deter us from this fibre-less lifestyle in a heartbeat. To make matters more severe, some of us could acquire cancers from consuming non food items daily.

How do we remedy this? Of course, as always, researching what we feed our animal friends is crucial. We must research the ingredients, brands and where the foods were sourced. In addition to research, it will do wonders to supplement our animal companions’ diets with whole food sourced fibre. Below are five choices of high quality, effective and nourishing sources of fibre that can be safely added to the dietary regimens of cats and dogs. Be sure to ask your holistic animal care practitioner which choices are best for your animal companion. It is unnecessary to add all five. You may begin with one at a time as well to see which source is most agreeable to your animal friends.

1)      CHIA SEEDS

2)      PAPAYA SEEDS

3)      CANNED PUMPKIN

4)      SLIPPERY ELM

5)      COCONUT OIL

 

Adding healthier sources of fibre to our animal’s diets will improve the balance of intestinal bacteria. Often, with a lack of fibre, there will be an imbalance resulting in inconsistent bowels. Due to inflammatory bowel disease, other gastrointestinal inflammation and an inability to properly flush out the gastrointestinal system, this limiting intestinal behaviour can cause a weakening in the immune system and open the door to chronic and life threatening health problems.

Understanding the benefits of adding fibre to our animal’s diet is the first step in giving them the quality of life that they each deserve. Knowledge is power. The more we know about what our animals’ bodies need, the longer we can keep them in our lives and in our hearts!

TUESDAY’S FULL MOON: REGENERATE, COMMUNICATE, CELEBRATE!

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HAPPY FULL MOON IN SAGITTARIUS

At long last, after several months of intensely critical full moon energies, we finally arrive at one that bestows upon us beautiful, bright and positive energy! Tuesday, May 29th 2018 marks this year’s full moon in Sagittarius. As with all full moons, this component of the lunar cycle represents its culmination. This full moon promises to be a powerful one whose energies are felt several days prior as well as several days after its fullest, at 9:19 am central time on May 29th in North America.

The theme of this full moon in Sagittarius is: Follow your heart’s desire! This moon, named the ‘Flower Moon’ is such because this is the time of year that flowers are becoming abundant. Thus moon is an excellent opportunity to plant seeds; both literally- in the garden and metaphorically- in our lives. We have created the seeds of intention on the new moon two weeks ago and now it is time to sow the seeds and actively begin the growth process. This Flower moon not only symbolizes actual flowers in our gardens but so does it the flowering of ourselves. It is time for us to blossom.

Sagittarius, the planet of the ‘higher mind’ is sure to allow us many insightful opportunities during this lunar hour period. This moon is an excellent time to expand our horizons on all accounts! Whether we wish to travel, plan an adventure or join a new class, the information learned and experiences had will be well worth the effort! Additionally, because Sag is a fire sign, we can expect a more heated desire, a stronger zest for life to awaken us into said new adventures.

If we are not the adventurous type, we may find that spending these few days expanding our minds is our top priority. The ever curious Sagittarius mind takes interest in learning the ‘why’s’ and ‘how’s’ of the universe. It is time to indulge this aspect of the higher mind! We will likely find that we are in the mood to discuss the meaning of life. This moon is a highly social moon with much opportunity to get caught up in intellectual pursuits. As well, this moon’s social nature has the potential to have us commune with likeminded individuals for a common cause.

With the moon waxing full in Sagittarius, the sun’s position in Gemini will add yet another social aspect to the day. Gemini is ruled by the planet Mercury which is the planet of communication. The combination of the placements of sun and moon will create a healthy environment to work on our communication skills. This is an excellent time to seek out any aspects of ourselves that may be out of balance in terms of effective communication and fears of public speaking.

This moon also advises us to take responsibility for our actions. The lunar influence of Sagittarius could great an air of overindulgence this week- for which we must remain accountable. We must remember that there are always consequences to our actions; so to behave and create in a manner that is in alignment with our healthiest good.

This highly social planetary alignment additionally includes Mars in Aquarius. This juncture encourages us to ‘lay down our arms’ and talk out our differences from an angle of understanding instead of to fight about them. The Sun, Mars and the Moon are all in harmonious alignment which allows for balance within our conflicts and confrontations. This is a wonderful day to iron out any outstanding unresolved issues with others in the most peaceful way possible.

In addition to speaking, the planetary alignment suggests that any form of communication is highlighted; whether it is writing, drawing or dancing, this full moon encourages self expression of all kinds! This is a wonderful opportunity to get in touch with old friends whom we have not seen or heard from in years. So pick up the phone or email and let your friends know you’re thinking about them. Who knows? You may find a surprise of your own in your inbox!

 

5 INTEGRAL STEPS TO SELF-HEALING

The important steps every person must know on the path to healing❤

SOULSTICE SPIRIT

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5 INTEGRAL STEPS TO SELF-HEALING

We have all asked ourselves: Why is life so challenging sometimes? And then we are reminded that if life was easy, we would never learn anything. It is the nature of the human experience to live out the peaks and troughs of life. As a result, the human experience can be quite uncomfortable at times. As with all circumstances, we have a choice. We can let them get the best of us, or we can employ our spiritual warrior sides and face them head on. When we choose, we must realize that if we choose to ignore the situations or let them get the best of us, we will continue to be confronted with them time and time again until we have healed. It is fair to say that the old proverb “If not now, when?” is of great import with this.

As a spiritual…

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IS YOUR ANIMAL’S DIET MISSING THIS CRUCIAL STAPLE?

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IS YOUR ANIMAL’S DIET MISSING THIS CRUCIAL STAPLE?

Did you know that a vast overwhelming majority of companion animals are severely dehydrated? As caretakers and caregivers of companion animals most of us aim to do the very best we can for them. We aim to give them the best home environments, play time and of course their precious food. An animal’s food should be a source of joy, love and nourishment. But is your dog or cat receiving the right balance of nutrition?

Many cat and dog caregivers feed their animals dry food. While this was once the norm, any research teams in recent years have realized that dry food is not by any means an adequate diet for a cat or dog. In fact, it is not really food at all. What would happen to our bodies if we ate dehydrated food every day for 12-20 years? If you guessed that our organs would become completely depleted of moisture, you would be correct. In order for the kidneys and GI system to process and pass the dry food through our systems, our digestive organs would have to draw water from all of the organs of our body; to include, skin, hair, bladder, kidneys, liver, gall bladder, spleen, pancreas and intestines to name a few. And after prolonged exposure to moisture depletion, our organs would begin to fail at an unnecessarily early stage of our lives.

In addition to dry food, many consumers are told by animal health professionals to administer their recommended brands of food. Blindly, consumers will believe that their animal care professionals know best and agree to do so. Shortly thereafter, they will notice that their cat or dog as an excessively dry coat and skin, sheds profusely and has digestive trouble. Why? Because they neglected to read the ingredients of what they have been recommended to feed their animal friends. Most of these labels read “pork by-product” and corn gluten” to name the first two of many sickening non-food items. The lesser the whole food ingredients, the further we stray from healthy animals.

When posed with the comment that “most animals are severely dehydrated”, my students and clients will almost always respond with “but my dog/cat drinks so much water! How can they possibly be dehydrated?” There is a very common belief in the animal loving community that water can effectively hydrate a cat or dog. And this would be false. Water alone does not hydrate an animal. Just like people, when an animal is thirsty, she will drink water. But alternative humans, what the water does as it travels through the body changes. Instead of getting absorbed into the inner organs, muscle tissues, joints, skin and coat, it runs right through their kidneys to be eliminated, most often failing to moisturize and nourish the body.

If we look, for example at the genetic lineage of cats, we will note that the origin of species was in the deserts of Africa where there was no water. They subsisted on the meats and blood of other animals. There was no water for them to drink. Therefore water drinking is a learned behaviour and not an innate behaviour. Further, when they do drink water, their bodies have not altogether adapted to absorbing its moisture as a primary source of nourishment.

With all of these moisture-depleting feeding habits, how do we reconcile? While creating new and exciting ways for our animal friends to drink water is extremely helpful, we must ensure that their diets also include food sources that help to keep the moisture in the body, organs, tissues, joints, muscles, skin and coat. The one staple that is crucial to every animal (and person)’s diet is Omegas 3 & 6. Animals do not require Omegas 9 for healthy body function. Omegas 3 & 6 EFA’s (essential fatty acids) allow for the animal’s body to retain adequate moisture derived from water and other wet foods. By adding EFA’s to our cats’ and dogs’ daily diets, we will be vastly improving their health and quality of life. Though most store-bought foods do contain Omegas 3 & 6, it is often nowhere near enough to keep an animal’s body healthy.

The following are five excellent sources of EFA’s that any dog and cat parent can begin to regularly add to their animal companion’s diet:

1)      RAW FOOD- Despite what most Western Veterinarians will suggest, raw food is the most species appropriate diet for dogs and cats. Whereas these professionals will explain several reasons why their food is better for animals than the raw, they have neglected to admit the reality of the situation- just as people animals need whole foods to survive. Of course, humans do not consume raw meats. However we do require whole foods to be the healthiest versions of ourselves. Keep in mind: these veterinary recommended food companies fund the veterinary schools at which the vets are taught. This old-school thinking has been engrained in the minds and curriculums of vets from day 1. There is far more evidence to support species-appropriate diets for a far healthier quality of life for animals. It is paramount that every cat or dog caregiver research for herself.

2)      CBD OIL- In addition to extreme dehydration, store bought and professional recommended foods are sickeningly high in inflammatory substances. Both preservatives and additives found in almost all cat and dog foods will, after prolonged exposure, cause inflammation of the joints and tissues. Long term effects of this inflammation include arthritis, joint pain, organ failure and cancers among other preventable bodily harm. CBD oil will help to reduce inflammation as well as add extra EFA’s to the body to help retain moisture and cognitive function. CBD oil will also help to improve circulation and ranges of motion as the animal ages.

3)      WILD SALMON OIL- By adding fish oils from known fish sources to our animal’s dietary regimen, we will be adding a healthy dose of Omegas 3 & 6, encouraging healthy moisture retention in the organs, tissues, muscles, brain, skin and coat. It is important to note what type of fish oil we are using. Salmon, for example, is a high source of EFA’s. Should a bottle read “fish oil” without any specific fish mentioned, we should note that it is likely a poor fish source that is likely to be quite polluted.

4)      COCONUT OIL- Coconut oil is one of the most beneficial foods to add to any animal’s diet. Coconut has anti-inflammatory properties and is rich in EFA’s. For a complete list of the benefits of coconut oil, see: https://soulsticespirit.com/2017/05/07/the-abcs-of-coconut-oil-for-cats-and-dogs/

5)      SARDINES- Sardines are a highly revered source of EFA’s. Despite their stench, they are rich in many vitamins and minerals. Note that canned sardines are extremely high in salt and may not be the ideal source of nourishment for cats and dogs. Fresh fish is always the highest and best way to proceed when aiming to add nutrient rich whole foods to the diet.

These are just five readily available sources of EFA’s. It is always important to check with your holistic veterinarian before changing your animal friend’s diet. It is even more important to realize that for animal and person alike, food is medicine. Ideally, food should be a way to nourish and nurture our bodies, minds and spirits back to optimal wellness. We must remember that an overwhelmingly substantial number of animal health-related issues are caused by poor nutritional habits. Therefore, these health issues can be healed by healthy nutritional habits. Be sure to research species appropriate diets, healthier choices, EFA’s and whole foods for every animal under your care.

 

ALLERGIC TO ANIMALS? 5 SECRET WAYS TO BEAT ANIMAL ALLGERIES

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ALLERGIC TO ANIMALS? 5 WAYS TO BEAT ANIMAL ALLERGENS:

Every person who has lived with a companion animal is well versed in the benefits of having them around. To express the multitude of reasons why animals bring us so much joy would take days on end. Despite all the joy, laughter and love that companion animals bring to our lives, they can often create allergic reactions to their human family members. While some allergies that humans suffer are with them from birth, other people develop them later in life. Whatever the case, there are several easy methods to practice in order to significantly reduce animal allergens in the home.

1)      Vacuum/dust often- believe it or not, many people neglect to vacuum and dust as often as they need to with animals in the house. Often, once per week isn’t enough. Especially during spring and summer when many animals are prone to shedding their winter coats, taking extra time to clean up excess hair and fur can make a world of difference! Making an effort to clean more often will reduce the volume of dander and other animal related allergens.

2)      Brush animals daily- Another easy way to curb animal allergies is to brush your animal companions daily. This way, lesser hair and fur falls onto the floor. In addition to minimizing shedding, brushing your animal friends will encourage a bond between yourself and them. Often, hair and fur brushing can be a relaxing experience for all. Of course, this is not always the case. However once an animal becomes familiar with the hair brush and technique, brushing will   facilitate trust from the animal to you. Of course, to minimize your own allergic reactions to hair and fur, you may want to do your brushing outdoors as often as possible.

3)      Feed whole foods instead of nutrient poor foods-As always, proper nutrition plays the most crucial role in how an animal’s body behaves. It is imperative to read ingredients. Do not fall victim to marketing schemes, clever advertising or manipulative tactics of money-hungry pet food companies. Instead of blindly trusting authorities on what to feed our animals it is vital to do our research and discover the healthiest option for our breed and species of animal. Just like for people, when animals are not receiving adequate nutrients such as omegas 3 & 6 among other nourishing nutrients found in whole foods, their hair will fall out. Of course, seasonally, animals shed their coats. However a gaping portion of this can be prevented by feeding our animals WHOLE FOODS AND SPECIES APPROPRIATE diets. By feeding raw food diets or high quality wet foods (not to be confused with veterinarian recommended foods which are frighteningly low in omegas and overall nutrition), we can help animals’ coats and skin to remain nourished. This will assist with far lesser shedding. Other side effects of whole food diets include; longer life, higher quality of life, healthy inner organs, healthy brain function, happy tummies, preventing early stage organ failure, major savings on vet bills as they age and the list goes on.

4)      Keep hydrated- Most dog and cat parents are completely unaware of how easily dogs and cats can become dehydrated. For one, most often water alone will not adequately hydrate a companion animal. Humans will constantly argue that “my dog/cat drinks so much water, how can s/he possibly be dehydrated?” Though water can adequately hydrate a human, the same is not necessarily true for an animal. This is particularly true for those animals who consume processed foods. Though the animal is aware that water can quench his thirst, the animal is likely not aware that the water is not being retained in the body. This water will often go right through the body and be outputted in the urine. This means that there is no moisture retention occurring in the body whatsoever. Ideally here, our goal is to have the animal’s body retain some moisture to promote healthy skin and coat, healthy eyeballs ( no red-eye) and in the longer run, urinary bladder and kidney health. On the subject of kibble (dry food) and kidney failure- I always pose the following question to clients- “what would happen to your body if you only consumed dehydrated food every day?” When considered, they often give the correct response: my organs would become dehydrated. Exactly. When a cat or dog eats mostly dry food every day it can be quite taxing on the organs, especially the kidneys. This is because in order for the body’s gastrointestinal system to process the dehydrated food, the GI system must draw moisture from all of the body’s organs. The kidneys take the brunt of this. As you may have guessed, after prolonged periods of time in this state, the kidneys will in fact shut down. And depending on other factors in the animals’ life such as genetics stress, a poor immune system etc, this kidney failure can happen at a very early age. Instead of buying into the “early stage kidney failure prescription diet” garbage, there are several ways to prevent any of this organ failure from happening. a) Add consistent supplementary Omega’s 3 & 6. Akin to the human body, the companion animal body requires a healthy amount of Omega fatty acids to retain moisture in the skin, coat, eyes and other vital organs. Healthy sources of Omega fatty acids for animals include; coconut oil, Wild Salmon oil, other fish oils, flax seed oil with DHA (DHA makes the flax seed into a complete protein. Without the DHA, the flax oil is considered an incomplete protein and will be of lesser value to the animal’s system) among others. It is important that before you add any new supplement to your animal’s dietary regimen, that you consult your holistic veterinarian or other holistic animal care professional. b) Ensure that your animal is consuming whole foods- For those who live with cats, domesticated cats should be living on a mostly wet food diet. This wet food should be of high quality (not high price!), and should be bought at your local cat/dog food store- NOT at a human grocery store. Cats in particular are genetically linked to their desert-dwelling ancestors. These wild cats did not drink water as they lived in the desert. Their digestive systems developed to retain moisture through the meats and blood found in the prey animals they consumed. This is why it is especially important for felines to eat mainly wet food. Their bodies only retain a very limited amount of water. Cats and dogs alike will derive a healthy amount of moisture from wet food. Be sure that this wet food is composed of whole food ingredients such as “deboned chicken or chicken, turkey, salmon, duck, etc.” and NOT “protein source by-product”.

5)      Acupuncture-. Acupuncture is a practice of Chinese medicine where tiny needles are placed at various points along the body. The needles open up pathways to restore vital energy to the body. For those with chronic allergies, often a few short tips to the acupuncturist will alleviate allergies. There is a major connection between allergies and the immune system (in people AND animals).  When the immune system of an animal or person is compromised, allergens will attack the body. Immune systems become compromised through various means; lack of sleep, poor diet, genetics, lack of exercise, improper body temperature regulation, excessive stress and a variety of other means. In addition to taking immune boosting herbs (see an herb specialist), acupuncture can boost the immune system. Acupuncture regulates the energy channels and correlated organs of the body by clearing out toxins that cause imbalances that weaken immune systems.

 

There are many more preventative measures we can take to alleviate allergens from the home. We must remember that approaching household allergen elimination from all possible angles will be our best go at success.

TODAY’S FULL MOON: WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW TO SURVIVE

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TODAY’S FULL MOON: WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW TO SURVIVE

Sunday April 29th marks this year’s full moon in Scorpio. As with each full moon, this one represents the culmination of one or more cycles in our lives.

Scorpio is a water sign. While it is said that its other counterparts of the water element in the zodiac (Cancer and Pisces) run warm, healing waters, Scorpio runs icy cold. Those born with scorpion energy tend to choose their words wisely, often choosing words that cut. Though its counterpart water signs tend to be connected to their emotions on a more obvious level, Scorpio will appear as though detached from her emotions; all the while allowing them to ruminate beneath her surface. At some point, these deep waters of emotion will erupt.

With the moon waxing full in the sign of Scorpio, we must accept that there are likely to be volcanic-like eruptions throughout this 48 hour period. This is to say that because the Scorpion energy runs so deeply and intensely, this 48 hour period leaves us subject to sudden and intense twists and turns. If we are not careful, the combination between the eruptive behavior of today’s energy and the full moon will force us to violently shake off what no longer serves our highest good. And as always, we have a choice: Do we want to make these changes on our own terms? Or do we want to have these changes thrust upon us? Often, as many of us are well aware, the latter can be very uncomfortable and quite painful. Therefore, we must open ourselves up to receive the guidance that is there for us to help us to heal; To accept this guidance instead of to fight it.

Thankfully, if we find that we are getting thrown off balance, we can rely on the grounding, earthy power of the sun’s position in Taurus. Contrary to the tumultuous energy of Scorpio, Taurus allows is to keep rooted in the midst of all of the potential chaos. By aligning ourselves with the Taurean energy, we will be sure to realize that the chaos, too, shall pass.

To further increase the intensity of the Scorpio moon, we can note that it is in beneficial alignment with Neptune, the planet of imaginations and dreams. Therefore, this is an excellent time to release any perceived hold that any external circumstances have on us. This is an excellent time to empower ourselves with independence, to trust our intuitive abilities and to break free of any rules and beliefs that no longer serve our highest good. As a result of Neptune’s ethereal energies, we may feel a calling to ponder what we would like for ourselves in the future. What can we dream, create and take action toward? This alignment is an excellent time to allow the creative ideas flow freely. This free flow of ideas will take shape into solid intentions to write by the light of the next new moon.

“Beware the Scorpion sting”. Let us ensure that we are prepared for drama. This moon is not only known for its stinger but also as “the fighting moon”. We must become aware of these potential energies. This knowledge will empower us to ‘rise above’ if and when we are confronted with combative family, friends and coworkers. Let us remember to avoid taking the actions of others to heart at this time. This 48 hour period has the power to create big, dramatic scenes. Let us not fall prey to actions or reactions that we will wish we hadn’t partaken in at a later date. Let us take deep breaths and count to ten before reacting to any volatility. Let us remember that we are not responsible for the behaviour of others; but only our own behaviour. It is our reactions to these situations that matters most.

In addition to all of the potentially chaotic energy that surrounds this lunar event, we must be mindful that there are three planets in retrograde. Saturn, Jupiter and Pluto are all retrograde which means that this 48 hour period may have us feeling drawn to be alone to contemplate which areas are out of balance in our lives. Saturn is the planet of structure and function, Jupiter is the planet of higher learning, wisdom and good fortune and Pluto the planet of sudden change and renewal. While forward moving, each of these planets promotes balance in each of their respective energies. However in retrograde, Saturn will have us disorganized while attempting to reorganize our lives. Jupiter retrograde can create a tendency to overindulge; be it with food, alcohol or other substance. Pluto’s retrograde can offer the opportunity for sudden eruption, in a highly disordered way. And the combination between Pluto’s retrograde and the Scorpio full moon will undoubtedly be a sobering one.

Despite all of this impending heavy energy, this full moon is a most excellent time to head outdoors and bask in the joy that the spring season brings. As we connect with our beloved Mother Earth, we will be reminded, time and time again, of the impermanence of all experiences negative. We will be reminded of the simple joy in caring for her as she cares for us. We will be reminded to live each moment as it happens, for each moment, as it happens, is all that truly exists.

 

 

CREATE YOUR DREAM LIFE IN FOUR SOLID STEPS:

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CREATING THE LIFE YOU DESERVE

A life beyond your wildest dreams is within your grasp! To most, this seems unlikely, illogical or ridiculous. What if, for a moment, you could transcend “logic”? What if you could go outside of it to see that what you thought to be so concrete was really just something somebody once told you and you adopted it as your own belief? What if you realized that you were the sum and parts of your own limitations?

It stands to reason that most of what we believe is what was put into our heads by external sources such as parents, society and environment throughout the course of our lives. In essence, we are a product of other people’s thoughts and ideas. What if we took a moment to let go of all of this and got in touch with who WE are? Who we are, as individuals, may have gotten lost in the shuffle. Our individual gifts, our individual truths all may have fallen by the wayside in an effort to survive in this society in this day and age.

What if you knew that there is an endless resource that anyone can tap into at any time in order to create anything they desired (as long as it HARMS NONE)? By taking a moment to examine the nature of our lives and the fabric of consciousness, we can truly realize that we are all co-creators in The Creator’s master plan. By taking a moment to acknowledge that every single one of us is created with a beautifully Divine spark, we can begin to realize our ceaseless connection to the Divine Source consciousness. And it is because of this connection that we will soon after be able to witness how beloved each of us is to The Divine.

The Divine Source wishes for us to succeed. The Divine Source wishes for us to live abundant, prosperous lives full of joy and harmony. Believe it or not, all we must do in order to become in alignment with this life is to ask for it.

Here are four tried, tested and true steps to manifesting our heart’s desires. If we stay rooted in these steps, we will be absolutely amazed and how quickly the magic begins to transpire!

 

1)      COMMIT TO YOURSELF AND YOUR DREAM- by taking steps each day to reaffirm our commitment to our dream, we are reinforcing the belief that it will happen. The Creator and our angels respond only to the vibrations we put out. This is why we always want to remain positive and act with love, especially toward ourselves. We want to use positive talk to ourselves, assuring ourselves that “we CAN do it” and that “we ARE succeeding”, etc. Committing to our dream can come in many forms. Some use a vision board, some write letters to their angels, many meditate. Because we are connecting with our higher selves during these activities, these are all forms of commitment to becoming in alignment with our dreams. It helps to write down exactly what we wish for. Because we think so many thoughts in one day, it can be tough for Spirit to decipher which thoughts we wish to focus on. By writing down exactly what we wish for, Spirit will know exactly what we want. Be aware that Spirit has quite a sense of humour! If we neglect to use precisely the words to articulate what we wish for, we may end up laughing, for the phrase “be careful what you wish for” shall loom. It is a good practice to get into writing our intentions on the new moon. This way, as the moon grows, so do our intentions.

 

2)      WRITING YOUR INTENTIONS- As mentioned above, in the process of creating our dreams, we must indicate exactly for what we wish. Because we think so many hundreds of thoughts throughout the day, we will want to make it easier for Spirit, our angels and The Divine Source to bring us what we ask for. This is done by writing down specific intentions for what we wish. Within the framework of writing these intentions, there are three guidelines that allow is to protect ourselves from any miscommunication with Spirit. Here are the three P’s of proper manifestation of intentions:
a) POSITIVE WORDS- you will want to ensure that you use positive words only when creating your list of intentions. This is because Spirit best responds to high vibration. Any negative word will only incur negative results. One popular example is; instead of writing the phrase “I Don’t smoke”, you will want to write “I am smoke free”, or “I quit smoking”.
b) PRESENT TENSE- you will want to be sure and create your intentions as if they are happening NOW. If we create intentions such as “I will quit smoking”, your intention is perpetually going to happen in the future, and it will never be happening now. If you use the phrase “I quit smoking”, this action and behavior is occurring right now. Because essentially, all that exists is right now , you are intending for your smoking to stop right now.
c) PERSONAL– because of the laws of karma (which is a whole other article unto itself), you will want to ensure that you only create intentions for yourself. You may NOT create intentions for anyone else. This is because ethically, you are not permitted to obstruct anyone else’s karma. For example, if a loved one is ill and you create an intention for them to get well, you may be interfering in their karma if they have attracted the karma to be ill. While it is a selfless gesture to use your healing power to help others in this respect, what may happen when we involve ourselves in other people’s karma is that we may end up taking the heat off of them and having to take their karma on ourselves. It is best, when wishing to intend something for another, to ask your angels and the angels of the other person involved , to help them to heal in the highest and best way possible. That way, you are releasing your desire to help them to the Divine, who can take care of it as The Divine Source sees fit.

 

3)      DO THE WORK- anyone who is on a spiritual path is aware of the significance of “doing the work”. It is one thing to become certified as a healer, however without the extensive practice of self-examination, we are not going to get anywhere. By working on ourselves, which can at times be extremely gruelling, we are progressing along our paths. By battling ourselves; our ego and our karma, we are coming one step closer to understanding the why’s and how’s of our existence. We are growing one step closer to fully coming into our Divinity. By coming fully into our Divinity, becoming enlightened, we are able to tap into the endless pool of creativity, manifested by The Creator. (Hence the name!) With this knowledge, we are also faced with responsibility. At the point at which we have done the work, we become aware of, and in alignment with our responsibility to create in the highest and best good of all involved.

 

 

4)      HAVE PATIENCE AND FAITH- Perhaps one of the most difficult lessons that we must learn in order to manifest our dreams is the lesson of patience. We must understand the nature of instant gratification versus Divine timing. Just because we “want something now!” does not mean that we get to decide when we are ready to receive it, or if we are to receive it at all! If it does not serve our greater good, or it impedes the life of another, it may not come into our lives. However, if what we are asking for is being requested out of love for ourselves and others involved, it is sure to come to us when the time is right. Part of manifesting, often the most important part, is having faith. We must BELIEVE that our dreams are coming true, and have faith that everything is happening as it should- even if we have yet to see any results. Divine timing is such that there is a multitude of occurrences going on behind the scenes that we do not see. There are a myriad of twists and turns that are taking place out of our line of vision in order for the details of our dreams to work out perfectly- when the time is right. Staying true to your faith in Spirit- AND yourself- is a sure fire way to help secure your dreams!

By following these four steps, you will soon start to notice subtle changes. Though some of the process can seem to go ever so slowly, if you stay on track and have patience, you will be living the life you dreamed of before you know it!