Many of us who are caretakers of companion animals are well versed in understanding the behaviours of our animal family members. We are cognizant of when they are hungry, when they need to go out and even when they want cuddles. Some of us are conscious of the acute sensitivities of our animal companions such as loud noise, potent smell and how our home environments affect our animal friends’ well-being. Even fewer of us are aware that every action, thought, feeling and belief affects our animal friends on very subtle levels. As these fewer of us are aware, if left untreated, these external factors can create blockages within an animal’s energy field and eventually become manifest as illness in an animal’s physical body. Aside from environmental factors that can affect an animal’s health, there are often physical symptoms which animals exhibit that go unnoticed until it’s too late.

Within the ideology of Traditional Chinese Medicine, there is a concept called observation. The concept, in a nutshell, suggests that we observe our animals while they are healthy so that we are able to spot the first sign of a downward shift. This is to say that when we first adopt an animal, after the animal has been given a clean bill of health, it is crucial to take note of how the animal appears and behaves. This way, when there is even a minute shift in the animal’s appearance or behaviour, we will be made aware of it immediately. Suffice it to say that upon this immediate awareness, we will take the animal to our holistic veterinarian. By doing so early enough, more often than not, we can prevent many traumatic experiences for our animal friends and ourselves. We may even be able to save their lives.

Among many, there are 7 common signs to watch for in our cats, dogs and other companion animals. It is paramount to observe these 7 aspects of our animals’ bodies regularly. This observation is best begun after the animal has received a clean bill of health and should be carried out weekly for the duration of the animal’s time with us. Listed below are 8 of the signs to keep watch for:

  1. EYES- An animal’s eyes are a prominent feature when it comes to gauging an animal’s health. The eyes speak volumes about the health of the inner organs. For example, if an animal who normally has the whites of her eyes as solid white, the first sign of bloodshot eye-whites is a sign that one or more inner organs is off balance. Or, if an animal’s normal state is to have slightly bloodshot eyes, very red eyes or purple eye-whites may be a symptom of an inner organ issue. It is our job as caretakers of the animal to understand her normal state and what is off balance. Eye white-colour correlates to several internal organs. Thus, if the eyes are off, it is more than likely that so is an inner organ. By recognizing this at an early stage, we are likely to be able to salvage the balance of the organ through holistic or homeopathic care.
  2. EARS- Just as the eyes represent inner organ health, so do the ears. When the ears of our animals are healthy, they will contain just enough moisture to regulate the inner workings of the ear. However, when we find ear infections, dark gunk in the ears, hair loss in the ear area, excessive moisture or excessive dryness in the ears, we can be sure that these symptoms are a reflection of an inner organ imbalance. We must note what our animal’s ears look and smell like in a healthy state so that we are able to note the very first sign of imbalance.
  3. TONGUE- In their natural state, different animals are born with different tongue colours. Different breeds of dog or cat also differ in tongue colour. It is important to take note of what colour and texture our animal friends’ tongues are so that at the first sign of imbalance we will be made aware. Within the scope of Traditional Chinese Medicine, there are several areas on the tongue that correspond to different inner organs. If one area of the tongue is swollen, discoloured or in pain, there is a good possibility that the corresponding inner organ is off balance. In addition to the tongue-organ map, we must also document our animal companion’s natural saliva colour, texture and tongue coating. While this may be challenging to gauge, their saliva is a crucial sign of inner organ health. To exemplify, let’s say our dog or cat usually has clear saliva and a clear tongue coating. One day we wake up to find that their saliva is slightly yellow and the coating on their tongue has a purplish tinge. This, according to Traditional Chinese Medicine, is a clear indication that the live needs immediate attention from an animal care professional. While this may seem to be straightforward, it is not so much. Some breeds of dog have naturally purple tongues. This is where observation can become tricky. If we did not know that our dog has a naturally purple tongue and we read the above statement ‘purple tongue is likely a reflection of a damaged liver’, we may become frightened and worried without reason. This and many other reasons are why it’s important to get to know our animal friends’ natural, healthy states.
  4. COAT/SKIN- As many of us are aware, the coat and skin of an animal is a direct reflection of an animal’s digestive health. If an animal is not receiving adequate nutrition from her/his food, the skin and coat will suffer. Unfortunately, many cat and dog food brands that are recommended by medical professionals are completely devoid of nutrients and cause severe malnourishment in animals. It is imperative that we all read every ingredient list of every food we are considering to feed our animals. It is imperative that we do not blindly trust medical professionals just because they tell us to. If we are the caretakers of animals with dry skin and coat, the very first thing we must to do is to look at what our animals are eating. If they have been eating a nutrient-poor food for a substantial length of time, we may only notice symptoms of malnourishment once it’s too late and the organs have begun to fail. By taking note of what our animals’ skin and coat look like when they are in their healthiest state, we will be able to ascertain the first signs of poor digestive health should their coats and skin become coarse and dry. Or, in certain cases of organ imbalance or early stage failure, an animal’s coat and skin can become oily or greasy. If an animal has accidentally ingested poison, the coat will appear greasy as well. Noting a healthy skin and coat can make all of the difference in the world in terms of keeping their inner organs balanced and toxicity free.
  5. GAIT- An animal’s gait (posture and way they walk) is a tell tale sign of bodily health. A with humans, through the central nervous system, the spine is connected to all major inner organs. Should we notice our animals suddenly walking ‘funny’ or straining to stand up or sit down, we may want to consider that their spinal health may be influencing the stability of an inner organ. Additionally, if we find that an animal is favouring a certain side when she walks or runs, we can be sure that this is a reflection of her spinal health as all aspects of an animal’s skeletal system are interconnected. Perhaps more commonly, should we notice early enough that our cat or dog is limping, we will likely be able to treat the issue long before it becomes a matter of surgery.
    By noticing how our animals walk while they are healthy, we will be able to notice the first sign of a skeletal imbalance. Should we find the imbalance when it first occurs, we will most assuredly prevent traumatic surgery for our animal companions.
  6. ELIMINATION PATTERNS- By far and away the most significant indication of an animal’s health is his elimination patterns. The elimination of an animal is directly connected to his digestive system. If an animal is not ingesting adequate nutrients, he will have poor elimination habits such as constipation, diarrhea or a combination of both. Consistent bowel movements are a sign of proper inner organ health. Nutrient poor food often also leads to bladder crystals, UTI’s and early organ failure. It is critical to research species appropriate diets for every animal in our care. Animals should not be consuming corn gluten, pork by-product, tri-glycerides, hydrogenated vegetable oils, chicken flavouring or any other non-food ingredients that are commonly listed in ‘prescription diets’. ANIMALS NEED WHOLE FOODS to encourage longevity and a healthy quality of life.
    By noting what an animal’s elimination habits are while they are healthy, we will be able to discern if what we are feeding them agrees with their bodies. Should we choose to feed processed foods, we will be able to recognize how our animals’ bodies process these foods by how they eliminate their waste. Dogs and cats should never have prolonged diarrhea or constipation. If they do, their bodies are clearly unable to process what they are eating. If they do, it’s time to change their diet to a whole-food based diet. To learn more about species appropriate diets, see your local holistic veterinarian.
  7. UNUSUAL HIDING BEHAVIOUR- Unlike humans who are most often very vocal if they are feeling unwell, animals will hide. This is because in nature, if an animal’s wellness is compromised, so are his defenses. This is to say that if an animal’s body is injured or compromised in any way, the animal believes that he is more vulnerable to predators. The animal believes that he is lesser able to defend himself against predators and is likely to be killed. Therefore, in the animal’s mind he has a better chance of survival if predators are unable to find him. Of course there are not likely predators in the companion animal’s home, however the ‘hiding’ behaviour is genetically linked to his wild ancestors. If an animal who is not usually timid has begun to remove himself from social situations or is found hiding for an unusual length of time, this is more than likely because he is feeling unwell or is injured in some way. This is generally a symptom of a deeper issue that should be examined by a professional holistic veterinarian.

The above six aspects of health are just a few of the many notable signs that we can find to observe the health of our animal friends. These six aspects are six symptoms of inner organ health. This means that alone, each symptom is not its own health concern but it is correlated to deeper issue of imbalance within the body. Should we seek care from a medical doctor, she will likely solely address the symptoms of the issue and not the root cause. Should we seek care from a holistic doctor, she is trained to address the root of the issue and not the symptoms. Should we choose to treat the symptoms alone without treating the root cause, the symptoms are likely to return. However, should successfully treat the root itself, neither the root nor the symptoms will recur. For more information on how seeking holistic care can save your animal’s life:   https://soulsticespirit.com/2017/03/19/thinking-of-going-holistic-how-to-prolong-and-improve-your-animals-quality-of-life/.

Making ourselves aware of how our animals look and behave while they are healthy can allow our animals to stay healthy. To reiterate, understanding our animals while they are healthy allows us to spot the very first shift in health. Treating the beginning stages of this shift, more often than not, can mean the difference between life and death for our animal family members. Just as it is their role to take care of us as best they can, it is ours to do the same for them. Let us honour their bodies by regularly ensuring that they are balanced; inside and out.






Our animal friends are part of our families. As such, they should be used to how we conduct our lives and everything we do in our homes right? Wrong! Here are seven of many ways that human behaviour annoys companion animals. Do you do any of these?

1)      Yelling- Animals are incredibly noise sensitive. Animals often cower and become extremely uncomfortable to the sound and energy of yelling. Animals are highly sensitive to energy. Often, yelling is accompanied by angry or other negative energies. This alone can make any animal feel irritated and unwelcome. Because of their audio sensory survival mechanism, the shape of their ear flaps and a heightened sense of full spectrum hearing, cats and dogs hear sounds at a magnified volume. Ask any animal, and they will tell you that silence is golden!

2)      Letting children climb on and pull ears/tail or teasing in any way- Parents often think that animals don’t mind and don’t take offense to small children dressing up animals, climbing on them and tugging their extremities (ears and tail). And what’s perhaps the most offensive about all of this is when the animal finally works up the courage to stand up for himself by lashing out, his people get scared and kick him out. ALWAYS put yourself in your animal’s position. Would you want children pulling your ears and tail, dragging you around and climbing all over you? As the companions of companion animals, it is our responsibility to understand our animals’ perspective and role in the home. Animals are not toys, dolls or novelties. They are gentle beings who should always be respected through a good understanding of boundaries from all household members.

3)      Barking or meowing at a dog or cat- Humans think they can get dogs and cats to communicate with them by barking and/or meowing at them. However, this is the work of the human ego. Dogs and cats think that this is ridiculous behaviour.

4)      Aggressive cuddles/greetings- Animals are very gentle beings by nature. It is important to recognize that they do not consider roughhousing to be endearing. Some dogs definitely like to play that way at the right time and place, however introverted dogs and almost ALL cats are not appreciative of aggressive petting or cuddling. They find it quite offensive and do not understand it. This is one main reason why they may hiss, scratch of bite. It is important to be mindful that cats are gentle beings and should be treated in a gentle way. After all, after being hissed at, bitten or scratched by a cat, many humans take offense. What most fail to realize is that they, themselves brought on this undesired feline reaction. 

5)      Staring- Just like humans, if you stare at an animal, it makes them very uncomfortable. If most could hear them, the animal would as “what are you staring at??” Not only do they become uncomfortable with human staring, but animals ESPECIALLY get annoyed when you stare at them while they are doing their bathroom business. Keep in mind how you might feel if someone was staring at you while you were on the toilet!

6)      Ignoring attempts to communicate- animals are fully conscious, sentient beings. They are always communicating with us through body language, behaviour and telepathy. If they feel like we are unable to understand their gentle cues, they may get frustrated and act out in a way that will definitely get out attention! Be mindful that our animal friends have endless messages to share. The more receptive and compassionate we become to this end, the better the communication will flow and the lesser our animals will be annoyed!

7)        Taking their pictures or video- Animals do not understand the concept of photography. They may understand that you are shoving your cellular phone in their face or personal space, however they do not understand why. In many cases, animals become annoyed and frightened by cell phone cameras. Some animals may not mind having their pictures taken but most do. They will often be uncomfortable with having you record their adorable behavior. It is important to stop and consider if your animal friend would appreciate having a phone shoved in their face during certain moments. As with all interactions with animals, it is IMPORTANT TO PUT YOURSELF IN THEIR POSITION before acting or reacting to them, That said, who can resist a photo shoot with the most adorable faces on the planet?

All of this can be avoided through the understanding and practice of empathy! By practicing kindness and getting to know what makes your animal companion comfortable or uncomfortable, you will be promoting a healthy home for your whole family. Your animals will feel calmer and more secure. They will be grateful that you have respected their personal space. They will be grateful that you have found a healthy understanding of their consciousness and sensitivity.  Most importantly, your animal companions will love you that much more!

To schedule your animal communication reading, email: jmorgan.soulstice@gmail.com.





Have you ever been in a romantic relationship where you felt like you’ve known your partner for a lot longer than you have? According to spiritualist philosophy, you may very well have! Souls travel in families. This is to say that souls that are energetically and karmically interconnected with each other will continue to incarnate together life after life. Sometimes the souls incarnate together for emotional, spiritual and mental support. Conversely, sometimes the incarnate together to resolve issues that have been created in lifetimes past.

Many of us have been in relationships where we question the very core of why we are attracted to someone who drives us to our limits. Why do we continue to feed into relationships that create for us such pain and suffering? Why do we attempt to leave our partner or an unrequited love relationship just to find ourselves forgiving our partners for the hurt that we feel as a result of their behaviour and actions? Why do we often feel trapped in relationships that seem to bring us nothing but heartache and despair?

Within the framework of spiritualist beliefs lies the concept of reincarnation. Reincarnation is the belief that living beings live many lives, one after another in order to fulfill their spiritual evolution. The evolution of the soul begins and ends with interconnection with the Source Consciousness (The Creator, God consciousness- any label indicating a higher power). Reincarnation exists so that each soul has the opportunity to work through its karma in order to reconnect fully with its Divine source. The goal of this work is to stop creating karma altogether. Once the soul ceases to create any further karma (Ceasing all negative thoughts, beliefs, actions and feelings thereby solely thinking, feeling and acting from the perspective of love and kindness), the cycle of reincarnation ends. Reincarnation occurs when the physical body dies and the soul lives on, living life after life, taking on whichever Earthly bodily form it needs to in order to fulfill its Divine purpose.

The origin of the soul contract is relative to the belief of reincarnation. In addition to the soul’s solo journey through lifetimes, healing its karma from past lives, it also must heal the karma it has created with other souls along the way. Karma is created through any thought, belief, feeling or action which the soul in the human body creates. This is to say that any behaviour in which the soul in the human body engages creates the fabric of its future. Whereas it can be difficult to avoid creating negative karma on our own, it can be increasingly difficult to avoid creating karma within romantic relationships.

In the afterlife (or, “between life”), in tandem with The Creator and other benevolent Light beings, souls will create and enter into contracts with each other to reincarnate together to heal their karma and live out their Divine purpose. These contracts include the subject matter that created the karma from previous lives. Until it’s resolved, the karma is carried forward from life to life. The contents of each contract are is contingent upon the degree of karmic debt (beliefs, actions, thoughts and feelings) that we and the other parties have created. The contracts contain information about where and when the souls are destined meet in the next life and carry out their contractual obligation in the hopes that it is resolved. When the souls meet in the following life, they are subject to the rules of the contract. And if left unresolved, will reincarnated time and time again until resolution occurs. Whereas many soul contracts are created to heal past life karma, some are created for the purpose of a support system. Not all soul contracts are created for the purpose of resolving past life issues, some are generated in order to align us with our soul mate. Whether for the healing of karma or to meet our soul mates, all of these contracts are destined to happen. But how do we know if we are in a relationship with our soul mate or if we are working through a soul contract?

Soul contracts for the purpose of karmic debt are often wrought with fear. They are filled with haunting dreams, anxiety and apprehension that make us question our own self worth. Many a time, one of the partners in a soul contract has narcissistic tendencies. Thsi means that they tend to twist words and situations into opportunities for self gain. They tend to belittle their partner’s feelings and blame them for all that is wrong with their lives  Soul contract partners constantly create disharmony and stress within the relationship. Often soul contracts feel as if its partners are perpectually fighting an uphill battle in order to find the peace within their partnership. Frequently, while in a soul contract, we feel “off”, as if there is something, a force larger than we are keeping us in a relationship that may not be the healthiest choice for us. This can often feel like we are being energetically ‘punched in the gut’ so to speak. Whereas this may feel as if we are being punished, we have committed to these relationships so that we can heal them and move forward. This is a contract whose terms our soul has agreed to before incarnation. This is for the sole purpose of healing past life issues and learning lessons associated with the making peace with the human experience.

Entering into a soul contract relationship often feels, at the beginning, as if we are falling in love. We often feel as though we have known our partner for much longer than we have. Initially, there is a level of comfort that seems unmistakably as though t he partnership was meant to be. Often these relationships involve marriages and other long term commitments. However, throughout the course of the relationship, we may begin to see ‘red flags’ about our partner. We may question how it is that somebody who claims to care so much for us can treat us so poorly. One partner is often completely self-involved and give little to no care for the other person’s well being. Many times these partners are selfish and self centered. Sadly, these subtle signs can take time for us to recognize. In some cases we will train ourselves to go against our gut, to ignore the signs and to carry on because we feel that this love is a love that’s worth fighting for. Even though our partners place all of the blame on us for all that’s wrong with their lives, we often try to see their perspective and forgive their narcissism only to cast our own hurt aside and join them in belittling our feelings. We will be made to question ourselves right down to our core beliefs. Most often, because we are peacekeepers, we will continue to make excuses for these people to convince ourselves that their offenses were “not that bad”, or that our emotional pain is a result of our being too sensitive. We will often avoid placing blame on our partner because we have learned to accept responsibility for our circumstances and behaviours. However as we are brushing our hurt aside, we are neglecting to pay attention to our feelings. Our feelings are valid and must be felt in order to heal. 

Whereas the soul contract relationship often involves a cycle of fights, break ups, and getting back together (repeat), the soul mate contract is peaceful and supportive. Though all romantic relationships have their challenges, the soul mate relationship will not make us question our self-worth, it will not bring about repeated bouts of anxiety, depression, nightmares and other ailments. The soul contract relationship often feels as though one partner is constantly putting more effort into the other person and it is not reciprocated. It feels as though one partner feels as though s/he has to tear her/himself into pieces in order to keep the other person whole. There is a significant imbalance of power and energy in the soul contract. Whereas the soul contract relationship shakes us to our very core, bringing up negativity, mental and physical illness, the soul mate contract is healing and nurturing. The soul mate contract heals all prior soul contract relationships.

The soul mate relationship is a rare one. Whereas some believe that there is one soul mate for every person, some believe that there are many soul mate relationship possibilities. There is something to be said for the evolution of the soul within even a single lifetime. This is to say that should the possibility exist that we each have more than one soul mate relationship possibility, this renders us free to spiritually grow at our own pace. As the saying goes, ‘like attracts like’. With respect to romantic partnerships, whichever stage of growth we are at will attract the right partner for us. Should we only choose to grow a little bit, we will attract the soul mate for us at that stage. Should we choose to spend our entire lives learning and growing, we will attract various soul mates for the various stages of growth that we achieve. That said, for those who believe that there is only one soul mate for only one soul mate, this soul mate must be available to grow and learn at the same pace we do. If one partner grows at a further accelerated rate, the two may grow apart.

Soul mates bring each other peace and harmony. Soul mates support each other and lift each other up. They have a beautiful understanding of each other and what each of them needs within the relationship and in life to feel content. Though every romantic partnership as its fair share of disagreements, the methods by which soul mates work out their differences is through a loving understanding of each other. 

A soul mate relationship is rooted in respect and equality of partners. Though in all relationships, at times it seems that one partner gives more than the other, the soul mate relationship has equal or near to equal effort and care about each other and the relationship from both partners. There is a balance of power and energy that occurs when two souls are living within their soul mate relationship.

Soul contracts most often consistently bring out the worst, fearful sides of us. Soul mates most often consistently bring out the best, loving sides of us. Whatever that path we have contractually committed to, its important to remember the underlying theme of our role in our relationship, in this lifetime and as spiritual beings. It is our soul’s journey to resolve and absolve all karma we have previously created.

For more information on how to heal your soul contracts, please see:



Or email: jmorgan.soulstice@gmail.com fo set up your individual soul contract reading.




On Wednesday, March 20th, 2019 we are blessed with both this month’s full moon and the Vernal (spring) Equinox. This occasion promises to be one full of new beginnings and lighthearted fun! With the equinox’s peak at 5:58pm EDT (2:58pm PST) and the moon waxing full at 9:43 pm EDT (6:48pm PST), the late afternoon/evening hours declare a time of limitless potential.

The Vernal Equinox is one of two days of the calendar year (the second one being the Autumnal Equinox) wherein day and night are balanced. It is the moment at which the centre of the visible sun is directly above the equator. This placement of the sun and Earth cause daytime hours to be equal to the hours of night darkness. The Vernal Equinox also marks the first day of spring as well as the first day in the sun sign of Aries.
Spiritually, both the full moon and the Vernal Equinox are a significant time of releasing of old energies. Because spring is a time of new beginning, the moments before the precise time of the equinox hold a great opportunity to let go of that which no longer serves us. For those who are yet unaware, the full moon is traditionally the time during each lunar cycle that we bid farewell to energies that no longer serve us. Thus, this full moon/equinox day is a blessing; immersed with opportunity to grow.

With the full moon waxing full in the sign of Libra, we can expect to feel somewhat balanced in the midst of the shuffling seasons and zodiac signs. We will likely be able to remove ourselves emotionally from all the seeming chaos that may surround us during this shift and flux. As Libra is a air sign, for those who are most often set in our ways, we will feel delighted in our ability to go with the flow. Further to the positive note, as the traditional symbol for Libra is a judge holding scales (reminiscent of the ‘Justice’ card in the Tarot), we may draw upon this lunar energy to aid us in seeking balance within ourselves as well as externally. Interestingly, the numerical value placed on the Justice card in the major Arcana of the Tarot is the number ‘8’, defining the symbol for ‘always and forever’, ‘infinite’ or ‘eternal’. This is to say that choosing how we spend our time and energy during this full moon is a wise move. Because of the resonation of the number 8 and its eternal energy, this lunar influence has the capacity to project our intentions and energy into our infinite future. If we are so inclined, it is wise to spend our time and energy on that which we wish for ourselves. What do we mist desire to accomplish? What are our dreams? Our goals? By focusing on these types of positive aspects of our futures, we are literally creating them as we think. Remember: Thoughts become things. Think and act with love.

Contrary to the moon’s placement in Libra, the sun will resume its yearly placement in Aries. As Aries is a fire sign, the sun will feel comfortable here. The Aries nature is a very passionate one. We may feel, during this illuminated time that we can accomplish anything we set our minds to. And we are right! However, we must be mindful that as strong willed and hard working as the Aries may be, they also become bored quite easily. Too often, they begin a very exciting venture only to find that they lose interest and feel called toward another project. Whether in work or romance, Aries people have been known to have relatively short attention spans. Knowing this ahead of time can make all of the difference in the world. Should we become excited about a new project during this time of wonderful creative opportunity, let us continue to remind ourselves that we can do it! We can remind ourselves that we are indeed capable of accomplishing anything our hearts desire. All that must be done is the work involved to see it through. Utilizing the diligent nature of the Aries sun, we are sure to succeed!

Noteworthy on the subject of Aries is that in the Tarot there is a ram situated on the Emperor’s chair. As the symbol for Aries is the ram, this is or particular interest while Aries is astrologically prevalent. This is because the ‘Emperor’ card in the Tarot is card number 4 in the major Arcana. The meaning of the number four is often connoted in reference to building a foundation. This symbol of building of foundation is consistent with this Vernal Equinox/Full Moon’s theme of new beginnings. And, as both Aries and the Emperor card yield a ram in their symbolism, we can expect to want to charge head first into our intentions, plans and projects. Full speed ahead!

The 48 hours surrounding the full moon and equinox will unquestionably be a period of excitement, new freedoms and new beginnings. This opportunity before us has the capacity to lift us up and shift our vibrations and our lives in a very meaningful and powerful way. These energies do exist! It’s our choice- what will we create with them?




In the first part of this article, we discussed various types and formulas of food. We discussed proper feeding instructions and how to switch to healthier types of foods. https://soulsticespirit.com/2018/03/18/what-every-person-must-know-animals-digestive-health/

In the second part of this article, we discussed the importance of doing our own research instead of blindly following instructions of professionals with ulterior motives. We learned that very often, health concerns get swept under the rug so that marketing techniques become the most efficient way for major cat and dog food companies to manipulate consumers into buying harmful ‘food’ products for their animal companions. https://soulsticespirit.com/2018/03/25/animals-digestive-health-pt2-what-you-need-to-know/

As important as all of the above information is, there is yet one vital ‘tell-tail’ sign of whether an animal is healthy. There is one main way to denote if an animal is adequately processing her-his food. This sign is one that most leave out of nutrition discussion as to some it is unpleasant. Many overlook this sign and characteristic of optimal wellness. And that sign is poop. An animal’s elimination habits are the key component to understanding what is occurring within his digestive system.

The frequency, consistency, colour and odour (lovely, I know) are all integral information as to how our animal’s inner bodies are functioning. Depending on each animal’s individual nutritional requirements, her body will react to food in a variety of ways. Of course, it is of primary import to research a species appropriate diet for your animal companion. Not all dogs require the same diet. Not all cats require the same diet. In addition to each species, each different animal has different genetics and environmental dietary considerations. It is too often that consumers believe manipulative marketing techniques in terms of painting every large breed dog, small dog or cat with the same dietary requirement brush. Some brands of food have even recognized this and started to market emotionally-based labeling that suggests different formulas for different breeds. While the idea is on point, the ingredients are not. In fact, when consumers do fall for these tactics, they will find that the results are not what they bargained for.

When we feed our animal companions inappropriate species diets such as over-processed foods, nutrient poor foods or foods high in preservatives and carcinogens, we will notice first and foremost, poor elimination habits. Before we discuss what are considered “poor” elimination habits, we may want to examine what healthy habits are. Healthy dogs and cats should eliminate at least once per day. The stool should be a healthy size. If an animal’s stool is frequently large in size, this is a clear indication that s/he is not retaining much in the way of nutrients. This is an indication that the food is passing right through her without being absorbed into the body at all. And this is a clear indication that she is eating nutrient-poor food. Stool should be average in colour (not too light and not too dark) and fairly odourless. Of course there will be some odour. However if the odour is overly repulsive, there is foul play in the animal’s digestive system.  The animal should rarely have diarrhea or be constipated.

If your animal friend’s elimination occurs lesser frequently than once per day, has a repulsive odour, is frequently runny, frequently hard, too light, too dark, too soft, too hard or the animal eliminates more frequently than he or she should, it is time to take  step back and examine. All of the animal’s elimination habits are DIRECTLY related to her/his food.

There are several methods to approach the healing of elimination habits. The first of which of course is to research a healthier food for our animals. There is more information on this in the second part of this article. In addition to finding healthier choices, we want to examine what else may be contributing to the poor gastrointestinal function of our cats and dogs. In many cases, kittens and puppies who have been ‘found’ at very young ages without their mothers take issue with digestion. This is because they have not received sufficient nourishment from their mother’s milk as youngsters for their digestive systems to properly develop. When the gastro systems of animals develop improperly, this leaves a lot of room for insufficient amounts of enzymes, gut flora and other vital aspects of healthy digestion. In cases where despite the healthiest food choices, the animal continues to endure chronic diarrhea, constipation or both, we will want to consider the addition of probiotics or enzymes to the diet. Do you know the difference? For a detailed description of the difference between probiotics and enzymes and their benefits, read https://soulsticespirit.com/2017/08/13/enzymes-or-probiotics-which-one-is-best-for-my-animal/ .

In terms of constipation specifically, many would be appalled by the lack of nutrition in processed foods. For instance, did you know that in many well known cat and dog food brands the “fibre” is made of sawdust? Sawdust.  And we wonder why our animals take issue processing food through their gastrointestinal system. To boot, not only is the quality of the fibre in processed foods compromised by not even being food but the quantity of fibre in many is severely lacking. Without fibre, the animal becomes bloated, gassy and constipated. How do we remedy this? By adding fibre to their diet, we will be allowing their bodies to function more healthily. Of course we will want to add real, whole foods. Not sawdust. We will also be sure not to listen to professionals who claim that animals need laxatives, prescription diets and other garbage that will cause more harm than good in the long run. There are several easy household ways to help our animals “go”. Here are four tried, tested and true methods of relieving constipation in cats and dogs.

1)      WATER– Nearly all companion dogs and cats suffer from severe dehydration. Few of their human families recognize this. When the body is depleted of moisture, it can easily become constipated. Diets that are higher in grains, kibble (dry food) based or are highly processed easily diminish the body’s moisture. Believe it or not in most cases, water alone cannot even fully hydrate the animal’s body; most of the water goes right through the animal’s system. However water can be fully effective in relieving constipation. Most animals do not drink enough water on their own. It is up to us as caregivers to monitor this and make drinking water a fun experience for our animal friends. From drinking fountains to water streams, there are a myriad of ways to entice our furry friends to hydrate effectively.

2)      ADD MORE OMEGAS 3 & 6 TO DIET– As mentioned above, water alone, in most cases, is insufficient in terms of hydration. By adding extra omegas to the diets of our animal friends, we will be encouraging moisture retention within their skin, coat and internal organs. Highly recommended sources of Omegas 3 & 6 are: Wild salmon oil, coconut oil, hemp oil, and flax seed oil. (Please note that flax seed oil is NOT a complete protein, however it contains the nutrients to retain substantial moisture within the body).

3)      ADD MORE FIBRE– If we look closely at the nutritional breakdown of ingredients in processed (canned or dry) food for cats and dogs, we may notice that the majority are lacking in the fibre department. As stated earlier in this article, many well known companies add sawdust to their foods and call it fibre. Obviously, this type of ‘fibre’ is insoluble (does not break down in the GI system). Therefore, adding our own sources of fibre can be handy. There are several household items that can be used to enhance the fibre content of their food. We may use: ground flax seeds, ground almonds, ground cooked lentils, ground cooked beans. These are excellent sources of fibre, Be sure to avoid canned beans and lentils as the cans often contain heavy metals and BPA’s. Buy your own lentils and beans in bulk and cook them on your own.

4)      CANNED PUMPKIN OR PAPAYA SEEDS– Canned pumpkin and papaya seeds are very high in fibre. They are sweet tasting which makes it easy for an animal to eat.

5)      CHIROPRACTOR– When all else fails, take the animal to the chiropractor! Because the digestive organs are all intimately connected with the spine, often a simple spinal adjustment can cure the body of unhealthy elimination habits. Because the muscles and tendons surrounding the internal organs are also connected with the spine, many times the treatment process is synonymous. Again, examining the skeletal & organ development of a malnourished or abused animal, very often physical trauma to the skeletal system can affect inner organ function.

On the other side of the poop spectrum we have those animals who have chronic diarrhea. In many emotionally sensitive animals, diarrhea can be caused by stress. It is also caused by improperly developed GI system as a youngster. Most of the time, the latter can effectively be treated with enzymes or probiotics. In cases where the digestive system is too underdeveloped, there are several options to rebalance.

1)      MORE WHOLE FOODS- Often, processed foods can cause digestive upsets in animals (and people!). By learning about appropriate raw food or whole food diets, even the most sensitive of tummies will have a better chance at functioning well.

2)      CANNED PUMPKIN– Though high in fibre, canned pumpkin has also been shown to balance food absorption and digestive function. Canned pumpkin is an overall win-win to add to any diet. Be sure to check with your holistic veterinarian to ensure there are no contraindications.

3)      LOWER PROTEIN CONTENT– Especially in aging animals and nervous animals, excess amounts of protein can cause runny stool. In most cases we are taught that higher protein means better overall health. In many cases this is correct however as each animal’s dietary needs differs from the next, there are numerous tummies that do not agree with this blanket statement. Be sure to note that in foods with lower proteins, food companies often replace proteins with fillers such as grains or starches. When seeking a lower protein, high quality diet be sure to read labels and purchase foods with vegetables instead of starches!

4)      CHIROPRACTOR (yes, again.) – When all else fails, take the animal to the chiropractor! Because the digestive organs are all intimately connected with the spine, often a simple spinal adjustment can cure the body of unhealthy elimination habits. Because the muscles and tendons surrounding the internal organs are also connected with the spine, many times the treatment process is synonymous. Again, examining the skeletal & organ development of a malnourished or abused animal, very often physical trauma to the skeletal system can affect inner organ function.


As I teach in all of my animal-related classes, it is of utmost importance to observe you animal when she is healthy so that you will notice the very first sign of a shift in her heath. By far, noting elimination habits (in detail!) is the most effective way to gauge what goes on inside the body. By keeping an eye on this tell’tail’ sign and acting accordingly, we are sure to keep our animals healthy and feeling great!




Many human companions of animals often wonder if their animals can actually understand the words they speak to their animals. Almost all of us have realized that our companions respond to us when we communicate to them with spoken word.
But how much do they understand spoken word when we are speaking to other humans within the vicinity of the animals?

Studies have shown that each species of animal has a relative capacity for understanding human language. Some breeds of species have the capacity to understand more than others as well. There are numerous benefits to practicing exercises with our cats, dogs, parrots and horses whereby we teach them the meanings of pertinent words. One obvious benefit is to aid in their learning what is acceptable behaviour. By using command words we are able to express fairly clearly how we wish for the animal to behave. Conversely we are able to express what s undesirable behaviour.
A second, perhaps lesser considered benefit to teaching animals to understand spoken word is for mental stimulation. What few people realize is that to promote longevity and healthy quality of life, in addition to adequate physical, animals require adequate mental stimulation. Without mental stimulation animals easily become bored and lose their mental sharpness. Some even choose to act out when they are not being challenged to utilize their mental capacity. There are several ways to maintain a healthy learning environment for our animal friends. By allowing them the opportunity to socialize and play outside they are subject to a wide array of smells and energies that is sure to stimulate them. Perhaps more to the point, encouraging our animal companions to engage in games with spoken word can be an excellent tool to help them learn and grow.

One such way is to lay out several items and teach an animal the name of each item. Using memory game techniques, the animal may quickly learn (depending on species and breed) the names of the items involved. Keeping our animal friends’ minds active will promote a much healthier quality of life.

                                                     A LANGUAGE MORE THAN WORDS

Almost more important to realize is that animals are acutely tuned into the element of spoken word that lies between the lines, so to speak. Beyond the language of letters strewn together to create precise words, animals understand a deeper aspect of spoken word. And that is intonation. Though companion animals may not be cognizant of all of our chosen words, they can certainly read our messages through intonation, or the tone of our voice. Animal are keenly sensitive to sound. Their audio-sensory perception is one of their most prominent survival mechanisms. Their ability to relate to pitch and volume is magnificent. Therefore, when we raise our voices, lower our voices, anger, soften, speak loudly and whisper, the tones of our voice carry far more information than do words themselves. Though animals ill not always understand each word we speak, we will notice that they do respond to the tones of our voices.

Conceivably, there is a third, deeper understanding that companion animals have through our spoken word. And that is their fundamental language: energy. Spoken word or non spoken word, our animal friends resolutely understand every thought, feeling and belief we have; whether we move a muscle or not. Because our animal friends feel that it is their familial duty to keep our balance and the balance of the household energy, they have adapted to a deeply sensitive understanding of human consciousness. Relative to their energetic interconnection with human consciousness, companion animals have become acutely empathic to their people. For those who are new to the study of spirituality and animal consciousness, empaths are those who unconsciously take on other people (or animals’) thoughts, feelings and beliefs and believe that they are their own. This means that when their human companions feel blue, they need not speak the words or even move a muscle to express their sadness; animals ascertain their person’s blues through empathic wisdom. In other words, animals feel what their people are emoting.

Further to their empathic nature, animals understand a vast array of their people’s thoughts. They may not recognize separate words that create the sentences we may think. However, they do understand both pictures and feelings. If we are visual thinkers, animals will likely have an easier time understanding our thoughts. This talent renders them telepathic. Telepathy accounts for the ability to obtain information from another conscious entity without using spoken word. Animals are highly telepathic as this is how they communicate with each other. Animals generally understand human thought however there is a substantial gap between animal and human consciousness as humans have a wider range of experience than do animals (i.e. driving a car, buying groceries). To an animal these examples would feel like sitting inside an object that moves or being hungry. Animals understand concepts without the added spoken word.

Do animals understand spoken word? Yes. Not only do they understand spoken word but they understand beyond the third dimension and feel the words we speak. Animal consciousness is far more complex than most humans give credit for. This is an excellent opportunity for us to connect with animal kind in new and beautiful ways. With great certitude, we will learn just how similar the animal mind is to the human!






February 19th, 2019 births a full moon in the sign of Virgo. This full moon is a supermoon, which means that it is one of four moons that are closer in proximity to the Earth than the other nine during the calendar year. Because this full moon’s distance to our planet is closer than most, it appears larger than usual in the night sky.
As with all full moons, this one is a time for release. When the moon appears at its fullest, it astrologically signifies the highest and best time to let go of that which no longer serves our highest good.

As this moon waxes full in the sign of Virgo, it illuminates our need for order and structure in our lives; both physically and emotionally. While being organized and regimented are a valuable part of a healthy life, this particular lunar influence may have us dwelling on our imperfections. We may feel compelled to dwell on every detail of our lives that is chaotic. Any lack of clarity in emotional relationships may feel excessively overwhelming. In fact any aspect of our lives over which we feel a lack of control may have us in a panic. We feel an accentuated desire to “fix” everyone and everything surrounding. However despite all of the opportunity to feel we are unable to manage and organize, there is a lesson. And the lesson is acceptance. This is our opportunity to accept our imperfections, both in or physical world as well as our mental, emotional and spiritual. By working towards self-acceptance, we are working toward inner peace.

With emphasis on our need to control every detail of our lives, we may also utilize this opportunity to practice the discipline of letting go. When we relinquish control of our lives, we are allowing circumstances to naturally unfold. And, as they always will, they will do so in our highest good- in ways that work best for all involved. In the human body and mind, we are unable to understand the full picture of the greatest good. By releasing our need to control; by letting go of our ego, we are allowing divine miracles to shine through. We are opening ourselves up to possibilities that we hadn’t even dreamt of.

While the moon shines brightly in Virgo, our sun is in the watery, sensitive sign of Pisces. We may feel a desire to withdraw- to go within and search our souls. We may find that if we do so, we will daydream the day away. Pisces energy can be quiet ethereal. We may utilize this energy to create! Though we may get lost in other dimensions during this lunar period, we may find that when we return, we are filled with love and inspiration to create. Whether we are creative individuals or strictly wish to create a better life for ourselves, the full moon in the sun sign of Pisces is a wonderful time to get lost in creative potential. However should we feel that we are getting “too lost”, we can rely on the grounded earth sign Virgo to bring us back to Earth.

Both Pisces and Virgo have strong empathic tendencies. Both are acutely sensitive to the thoughts and feelings of others. This, during this full moon period, is not to be taken lightly. During this time, empaths may feel extra sensitive. The Piscean energy could have empaths engulfed in their emotions- or the emotions of others. It is crucial to all to engage in grounding techniques- with the aid of the Virgo moon. By rooting ourselves into the Earth, we will find balance and compassion.

Throughout this 48 hour lunar period, it is crucial that we are mindful of the motivations behind our actions. Do we have ulterior motives? Or are we behaving out of the goodness of our hearts free of attachment? Thankfully, both the Piscean and Virgo energies carry a “think before I act” mentality. This mentality enables us to discern the motivations behind our actions. We may also draw on the “think before I act” mentality before we find ourselves succumbing to the ego’s need for perfectionism. Before we get swept up into dwelling on each individual detail of that which is out of our control, we may take comfort in our ability to practice the pause, take a deep breath and find compassion for others; and most importantly ourselves.





As many of us are experiencing, most of North America is in a winter that is far colder than normal. For anyone who is sensitive to cold (animal or person), these colder climes can have us feeling blue. For some of us, feeling cold is so uncomfortable that we go to extreme measures to avoid it. However try as we might, sometimes there is just no escaping the cold.
The cold weather not only affects our moods, it also affects our physical bodies. When we are cold, there is more risk of pulling a muscle, imbalanced walking, muscle atrophy, respiratory system and circulation. The combination of mental and physical discomfort often leads to a deep depression. In some cases, we are well aware of our seasonal depression. In others, it goes unexamined, leaving us feeling unquestionably miserable.
Of course, going to see our doctor is an important part of mental wellness. However, it is often avoidable by making a few small changes to our routine. Some of the time, shifting several small aspects of our routine can make all of the difference to beating the winter blues. Here are five easy shifts that we can make to our winter routines that can help us combat seasonal depression:

1) EXERCISE- Exercise is a well known method of mood regulation. Particularly cardiovascular exercise which raises endorphins which raises the spirit. Endorphins cause a feeling of euphoria after exercise. Though most are familiar with the term “runner’s high” when considering the boost of endorphins after exercise, cardiovascular exercise does not have to mean running or any other high impact body movements. An effective cardiovascular workout is one that moderately, intermediately or greatly elevates the heart rate. Fast walking, swimming, cycling (even stationary or spinning) are all effective means of raising the heart rate. Circuit training or other fast-paced weight training with light weights is also a beneficial endorphin- causing exercise. It is not necessary to lift heavy weights for an endorphin release. Lifting lighter weights in many repetitions (20 or more per set) helps with muscular endurance which will in turn raise the endorphin levels of the brain. Not only do endorphins help us to feel happy, they also minimize physical pain.

2) ADAPTOGENS- Adaptogens are used in herbal medicine for various health benefits. One such benefit is that they promote stabilization of moods, hormones and physiological processes. Adaptogens have been used in Ayurvedic medicine to elevate moods and regulate hormones. Adaptogens moderate stress responses which is to say that when we become stressed, anxious or depressed, our reaction to those feelings is calmer and more regulated. Adaptogen herbs treat the hypothalamic-pituitary-endocrine axis. This is to say that they keep the brain and hormones in check and balance. Additionally, increasing adaptogens in the diet promotes homeostasis. This means that they keep body cells healthy and unchanged so that they are unimpaired by external conditions. Adaptogens boost the immune system so that fewer pathogens can infiltrate the body. This means that fewer allergies, flu-like symptoms, chronic fatigue or terminal illness attack the body, leaving the body in a healthier state for longer. Several examples of adaptogen herbs are: Holy Basil, Ashwagandha, Rhodiola Rosea, Ginseng, Astralagus, St John’s Wort to name a few. Be sure to consult your local holistic doctor or local herb consultant to be sure which option is the best for you.

3) INCREASE SUNLIGHT- Studies have shown that those with seasonal depression show some improvement when they increase their sunlight exposure. This may mean direct sunlight, indirect sunlight such as through a window or using an indoor tanning bed for no more than 7 minutes at a time. Though there is much discrepancy about whether or not indoor tanning is healthy, for those who have seasonal depression, indoor tanning is often highly effective in elevating moods. If indoor tanning is not an option, sitting inside your home by a sunny window for a half hour or more can also help to treat those seasonal blues. Sunlight is a powerful healer.

4) INCREASE OMEGA FATTY ACIDS- Studies have shown that ingesting an appropriate amount of EFA’s (essential fatty acids) in the diet can help to regulate brain hormones. The brain requires an adequate amount of Omega 3’s to properly function. It has been discovered through research that many people who have depression are deficient in Omega 3 fatty acids. Several case studies were performed on various types of depression with various sources of omega fatty acids. Though research is fairly recent, the studies showed a significant decrease in seasonal, chronic, postpartum and severe depression through the intake of omega fatty acids. There are two types of Omega’s; EPA and DHA. The above studies showed that food sources that contained both of the types of Omegas were the most effective in the treatment of depression. Common sources of omega fatty acids are: salmon, salmon oil, almonds, avocados, eggs, CBD oil, algae oil, coconut oil, flax seed oil with DHA, hemp seed oil, sardines. It is unnecessary to eat all of these food sources. It is important to do your research in order to discern which options are right for you.

5) LAUGHTER- It is commonly stated that “laughter is the best medicine”. This is the truth! When we laugh, we immediately shift our vibration to a higher state. This is because our brain and body react to the joyful feeling that comes along with laughter. Our body reflects the joyful feeling, raising our vibration out of the depths. Too, when we smile, the brain releases dopamine which is a neurotransmitter that produces feelings of happiness. Laughing also produces endorphins which, as we learned above, create a natural high. Laughter decreases cortisol levels which is the hormone responsible for stress and worry. Laughter also increases serotonin which is the hormone responsible for regulation of moods. Laughter, both experientially and scientifically truly is the best medicine!

Thankfully, this winter shall pass. In the mean time, the above mood elevating techniques will help us to stay positive!




There’s no doubt about it. Animals love food. And for some of us, feeding our animal companions brings us almost as much joy as it brings them. It is a bonding experience. However, because animals find food so exciting, there is a danger in allowing ourselves to fall into poor feeding habits. Often, caregivers feel compelled to express our love toward animals through food because we know how much they love it. But are our feeding habits unintentionally harming our beloved furry family? Here are eight common feeding habits that almost always create more harm than good. Are you guilty of any of these?

  1. FREE FEEDING- Allowing our animal companions to eat whenever and however much they want are detrimental to their health and metabolism. When animals eat all day and night they will, more often than not, gain weight. Obesity is an alarmingly common cause of early death in cats and dogs. Animals’ metabolisms are no different than humans in that they will gain weight if they are unable to burn off the calories that they are consuming. Further, many of the foods that are left out on which the animals free-feed are full of unnecessary grains and starches and preservatives that cause inflammation of the joints, yeast overgrowth and obesity. Of course obesity has its own set of sub category ailments such as poor respiratory and cardiovascular health, early stage arthritis and organ failure among a vast array of others. By feeding our animal friends set meals (ideally 3-4 smaller meals per day), we are allowing their metabolisms to function optimally while disallowing them to gain excess weight. Should caregivers of animals be unable to feed 3-4 meals per day due to work schedules, feeding twice per day while leaving a snack for the animal to find during the way such as a kong toy filled with peanut butter or a portion of food hidden for the animal to find throughout the day is an excellent replacement for free feeding. This even food distribution will also help to regulate the animal’s metabolism and avoid obesity and other symptoms of poor metabolic health.
  2. NOT READING INGREDIENTS- Many consumers blindly purchase food for their cats and dogs. Some consumers blindly accept what their veterinarian recommends without doing their own research. This is dangerous. If you have ever read the first several ingredients of “prescription” diets, you will note that they are composed of “pork by-product”, “corn gluten” and various other non-food items. Animals, akin to humans, thrive on whole, nutritious foods. Though seeking advice of a veterinary professional is often important, it is even more important to research the advice they give us instead of blindly accepting their claims at face value.
    Further, there is often an over-saturation of vitamins and minerals in many store bought foods. While a healthy dose of vitamins and minerals is crucial to an animal’s health, the oversaturation of them has been repeatedly linked to hypo and hyperthyroidism. BE SURE to research (or ask your holistic vet) for information on appropriate levels of vitamins and minerals for your particular breed of companion animal.
    In addition to prescription diet foods, there are also low quality nutrient poor foods that are often purchased by consumers to avoid breaking the bank. While saving money is definitely important, at what expense are we doing so? Many of the nutrient poor foods on the market leave our animal friends malnourished and suffering from inflammation. Every companion animal deserves to be properly nourished so that she or he has the best possible quality of life. There are many healthier choices available for middle of the road prices. By purchasing foods whose first ingredients read “chicken, turkey, salmon etc” we are providing our animal family members with nourishment that will prolong their lives and give them a better quality of life while they are with us.
  3. FEEDING DRY FOOD/KIBBLE- KIBBLE IS NOT FOOD. Dry food is not an appropriate diet for any animal. Should any animal regularly feed on dehydrated food, they will easily become dehydrated. This is because when an animal eats kibble, the digestive process requires all of the water in the digestive organs to process the dry food through the digestive tract. After repeated offense of this water draining digestive process, the inner and outer organs of the animal become completely devoid of moisture. In the short term this results in skin rashes, dry eyes, bladder crystals, painful urination, inflammation of the joints and organs, arthritis and excessive thirst. In the longer term this results in early stage kidney failure. In order to avoid all of these severe ailments, feeding our animals a moisture-rich diet will save the day. By adding more foods with omegas 3 & 6, we will be allowing our animals to stay hydrated.
  4. TOO MUCH GRAIN/STARCH- Primarily, cats cannot digest grains. They lack the digestive enzyme that is responsible for the breakdown of grains. This means that if they eat a high grain diet, they metabolize the grains as sugars. If the sugars do not get burned off (through exercise), their sugar levels become deregulated which affects their insulin levels in the pancreas. This is where feline diabetes comes from. In order to avoid giving your cat diabetes, it is crucial to feed a grain free cat food.
    Secondly, in cats and dogs who are sensitive to yeast, feeding a high grain-starch diet is detrimental. This is because grains and starches such as rice, barley, oats, potatoes, sweet potatoes, wheat, etc breed yeast in dogs and cats. Many dogs develop yeast overgrowth as a result of a nutrient-poor diet that is wealthy in grains and starches. If your dog or cat has candida (yeast) overgrowth, research grain-free foods and species appropriate diets.
  5. TOO MANY TREATS- Most of us likely realise that feeding our animals too many treats can be detrimental to their health. Fatty, sugary foods cause obesity, inflammatory diseases such as arthritis, inflammatory bowel disease, diabetes and more. Many cat and dog caregivers often use treats to train their animals to exhibit desired behaviours. While this is proven to be an effective mode of training, the health issues that arise could be costly. To substitute treat training, try training with a piece of dry food or a small piece of ground beef (without seasoning or sauce!) The goal with any training is to entice the animal with a reward that is more enticing than anything s/he receives on a regular basis. If your cat is eating mostly wet food (which she ABSOLUTELY should be), a piece of kibble may be exciting enough to entice her to learn desired behaviour. If your dog east mostly canned and dry food, instead of using a sugary or fatty treat, try enticing him with lean cooked ground beef. This way, he will reap the rewards of a highly delicious and nutritious snack!
  6. FEEDING HUMAN FOOD- While we all enjoy seeing the expressions of joy and excitement upon feeding our companion animals table food, we must be very conscious of how these food affect their health. This is not to be confused with feeding whole foods such as animal proteins and veggies which have many health benefits for cats and dogs. Contrary to the health benefits of whole foods, many people believe that feeding “a small amount” of fatty, salty and sugary human foods “can’t hurt them”. They would be wrong. For some animals, even a small amount of fatty, salty or sugary foods means many adverse, chronic health reactions such as IBS, Inflammatory bowel disease, yeast overgrowth or even fatal, painful pancreatitis. It is always best to read labels and research species appropriate homemade diets thoroughly in order to keep our animals fully nourished!
  7. BUYING “WHATEVER’S ON SALE”- Cheaping out on dog and cat food will come back to haunt both your animal and you. Any animal who is malnourished inevitably ends up at the vet clinic too early with a mountain of vet bills. By feeding cheap food to our animals we are causing their bodies to easily break down from malnourishment. This most often results in trips back and forth to the vet which is quite costly, not to mention traumatic for our beloved animal friends. Buying “whatever’s on sale” is hazardous to your animal’s health in many ways. The cheap cat and dog foods brands are full of inflammatory substances, non-food items such as chicken beaks, plastics, carcinogens, food dyes, saw dust, heavy metals, pollutants and dozens of other harmful toxins. These types of harmful ingredients cause may chronic, painful diseases in cats and dogs and are easily avoided by taking the time to research high quality foods that do not break the bank.
  8. BELIEVING THAT WATER ALONE IS ADEQUATE HYDRATION- Contrary to popular belief, water alone does not hydrate companion cats and dogs. It flushes out the organs well which is beneficial to the animal’s well being, however it often fails to be retained in the animal’s body. In extreme temperatures such as the harshness of winter or the heat of summer, companion animals require a lot more than plain water to stay hydrated. Sometimes, no matter how much water our animal friends consume, they are still dehydrated. It is important to understand why this is and how it can be remedied. Without adequate omega fatty acids, water runs right through the body. Omega fatty acids (EFA’s) are the ‘good’ fats that the body needs in order to optimally function. Hair, skin, nails and fur are composed of EFA’s. In a diet that is absent of them, the animal’s hair, skin, nails and coat become dry. Additionally, Omegas (EFA’s) significantly reduce inflammation of the joints, organs and muscle tissues. Water alone cannot rehydrate hair, skin nails and fur, nor can it reduce bodily inflammation.
    Often low-fat store bought foods (and prescription diet foods) contain too little EFA content and contribute to inflammatory diseases and chronic dehydration. The lower fat foods often remove the good fats as well as the bad fats, leaving little room for the moisturizing of major organs.
    Additionally, in a dry food-based diet, water is insufficient hydration for animals as the water merely helps the dry food to pass through the gastrointestinal system with very little left over to moisturize the inner organs.
    Solution? Add more essential fatty acids to the diet. Common and safe sources of the above are: wild salmon oil, coconut oil, hemp seed oil, CBD oil, whole cooked salmon (without sauces and spices), ground beef, sardines, pumpkin seeds and chia seeds. It is unnecessary to add more than one of these sources to the diet at the same time as oversaturation of EFA’s can cause loose stool and weight gain. To find out which source of EFA’s is best for your animal(s), consult your local animal communicator or holistic veterinarian.

These are just eight of many potentially harmful feeding habits many of us make. As always, when making any alterations to our companion animals’ diets, it is important to consult your local animal professional. And, as stated above, be sure to do your research in addition to listening to the advice of your local professional to understand the best options for you and your animal family members.






Self care in itself is spiritual practice. As healers and empaths we often neglect to take the time to properly care for ourselves. All too easily we become overwhelmed by the many aspects of our lives that call to us. Before we know it the day has passed us by and we have forgotten to take time out for ourselves for self care. With all that is occurring in the world and almost nowhere to escape from it, we are likely to feel easily drained and overtired. Though many of us have very limited amounts of “free” time, there are several daily time-friendly practices in which we can engage in order to promote self care and overall well-being.

1)    STOP MAKING EXCUSES FOR PEOPLE- As sensitive souls, we are often known to be peacekeepers in interpersonal relationships. Whether romantic or plutonic in nature, we are likely to find ourselves rationalizing the hurtful or offensive behaviour of loved ones in order to avoid conflict.  We often rationalize and excuse their behaviour because we feel that we can accept everyone for who they are and that we are immune to their negativity. It is our nature as healers and empaths to make excuses for the behaviour of others, even when it offends or hurts us deeply. In order to nurture and care for ourselves, we must remember that it is acceptable to put our own need first. If we are repeatedly hurt or offended by the actions and behaviours of others, it is safe to remove ourselves from the situation. It is safe to accept that these types of people are not contributing to our well being in a positive way. It is safe to accept that after repeated, hurtful behaviour, these people may not be the right fit for us in our lives at this time. Should these excuses we make be for family members or those whom we are unable to remove from our lives, it is important for us to take the time to ground ourselves before and after any interactions with these people. This grounding may take the form of writing, drawing, connecting with nature or any other healthy outlet to which we are drawn. While it is our goal to be non judgmental toward all humans, it is not our job to accept their repeatedly offensive and hurtful behaviour on the grounds that “they have had it rough”, “we deserved it” or any other excuse we can come up with. Though it is important to respect where others have come from, their hurtful behaviour wears on us. After prolonged exposure it even has the capacity to wear on our self respect, self confidence and self love. There is a fine line between accepting someone for who they are and allowing ourselves to shove our hurt feelings down inside to our own detriment. It is never ok to continuously put our own hurt feelings aside to make somebody else feel good.  Be honest with yourself and others. If someone is being hurtful towards you, it is acceptable to walk away.

2)    SET REALISTIC BOUNDARIES FOR YOURSELF AND STICK TO THEM- As empaths and healers we are prone to being energetically drained by other people and circumstances. It is crucial to our well being that we create boundaries for ourselves. This most often means learning to say “NO”. As healers and empaths, it is our second nature, our duty, to help anyone and everyone we can. While this is quite a noble feat, we often tend to go overboard. We often tend to ignore our body’s warning signs that it needs to rest because we are so caught up in caring for others. But what we must remind ourselves that the very best way to care for others is to care for ourselves. And this means setting boundaries with others so that we allow ourselves the time to rest and recharge. This means taking the time to listen to our bodies and hearts to hear them speak of what they need to be balanced. And once we have heard their needs, follow their advices. It is one thing to tell ourselves that we are going to stop doing something, yet it is entirely more effective to stick to the resolution! Be firm with yourself in knowing what you need to keep yourself physically, emotionally, mentally and spiritually healthy- and stick to it! After all, we cannot pour from an empty cup!

3)    RESPECT YOURSELF- Self respect is an integral part of self-care. Under the umbrella of self respect are many ideals. Eating healthy food, resting well and exercising to the best of our ability are all adequate ways of respecting ourselves and our bodies. Aside from the physical aspects of self respect, there are various mental and spiritual. To be patient with yourself is to respect yourself. Understand where your beliefs and feelings end and others’ begin; avoid confusing the two. Subscribing to the beliefs and thoughts of others- if out of alignment with ours- can be exhausting. Any beliefs and actions that we take that are out of alignment with or authentic selves are not genuine. The lesser genuine we become, the more exhausting life becomes. Be firm in your convictions however do so without trying to prove to anyone who you are and what you believe. Part of self respect is being confident with who you are and what you believe without allowing ego to interfere. Whether going along with the beliefs of others or forcing your beliefs on others, you may find that you become easily depleted. The preceding behaviours are out of alignment with your highest good. To realign with your highest good is to stay firm in your convictions and to have compassion for those who do not.

4)    LEARN TO SAY “YES”- LET GO OF LIMITING BELIEFS, THOUGHTS AND FEELINGS- Part of caring for ourselves is to acknowledge that we often engage in limiting thoughts, beliefs and actions. When we tell ourselves “no” or “I can’t” or “I shouldn’t”, we are limiting our potential. Often we object to taking breaks or vacations because we feel we “can’t afford” or “can’t leave”. While not everyone can necessarily go on a month long cruise of the Caribbean, everyone has the ability to take a “time out” once in a while. Everyone has the ability to take a few hours away from their stressors to go into nature or to turn off their phones and listen to relaxing music in their favourite room of their house. By telling ourselves “I can” take a break, we are allowing our bodies to recharge.
By telling yourself “Yes, I can take healthy steps to change my life” instead of being afraid of new and potentially exciting new experiences, you will be changing the very fabric of your life. You will be tailoring your life to a higher and better version of itself. You will be creating a far more optimistic life path for yourself.
The energy that comes along with saying “Yes!” to new opportunity is far more positive for the body and mind than telling yourself “No”. The “yes” vibration allows you to be open to receive all of the wonderful blessings and gifts that the universe has for you!

5)    LET GO OF UNHEALTHY ATTACHMENTS- Buddha rightfully claimed that “Attachment is the root of all suffering”. When we become attached to material items, people or circumstances, we are creating the potential for suffering. By practicing detachment from all of the above, we are lesser likely to be disappointed when these things leave us or fail to go the way we’d hoped. Nothing is permanent. To understand the impermanence of all that comes in and out of our lives is to be free of attachment to them.
That said, it is often difficult to release attachment to loved ones. This is because in the human body we form emotional bonds with others. It is even often difficult to release attachment to workplaces and sentimental items for the same reasons. However, often we outgrow these relationships, circumstances and items. Though we have outgrown them, letting them go can prove to be quite challenging. But the more we hold on, the more they can breed suffering. This suffering naturally takes its toll on our well being. This is because these people or situations that we have outgrown are often out of alignment with our current vibration. As many of us know, the further long our spiritual path we venture, the more we gravitate away from that which no longer serves our highest good. When we invest our energy into those situations that no longer serve our highest good, we will invariably find that our energy becomes quickly drained. This is because we are constantly descending our energy to meet those old vibrations which we outgrew.  It is of great import to learn to recognize when an unhealthy attachment is forming and to release it immediately. By aiming to release attachment to all unhealthy situations, we are saving our energy from certain depletion.

Particularly in today’s world where we are often surrounded by misery on the news, at work or on social media self care is a must. Self care is self love. By engaging in positive action toward self care, we will become stronger and more empowered versions of ourselves. We will feel more energized and far better equipped to be the best versions of ourselves we can be!