It was about 8am and time to start my day. I got out of bed slowly to prepare my body for the trek to the bathroom. My dog (Tucker, the beagle) looked up at me and decided his day should start as well. As I began to walk, I could feel mild stiffness in the ankles and hips as I do most days. It always clears up within taking about 10 steps. I noticed, however, that before my dog began his trek, he stretched his shoulders, hips and paws and shook his entire body creating an instant increase in blood flow. Hmmm, stretching before starting the day; now there’s an interesting concept!
It was now time to head down stairs to begin the morning coffee ritual. As the rich flavor permeated the air, I couldn’t wait until the brew was ready. Once again, my dog joined me in the kitchen and walked right over to his water bowl for his morning hydration. Hmmm, I’m about to drink coffee which acts as a diuretic and dehydrates the body and my dog is providing nourishing water to hydrate his. Following his lead, I consumed a 14oz glass of water..
It was now time to sit down and begin reviewing my emails with that lovely cup of java. As I turned to head back upstairs, I noticed Tucker sitting patiently in front of his food bowl ready for breakfast. I haven’t provided my body with any form sustenance to this point, yet I’m preparing to begin my activities of the day. Hmmm, Tucker is about to begin his morning ritual of playtime, but before he is willing to, he wants to eat his grain free high quality dry food mixed with his “raw food” and barks to make certain the message is clear. Maybe Tucker’s right; maybe I should consume that morning meal first providing my body the fuel it needs for maximal performance.
About two hours has gone by and I have accomplished a great deal sitting in front of the computer. Tucker decides at this point that a 1 hour walk/run is needed. As I sit sedentary in my comfortable chair compressing my spine and preventing good healthy lymphatic flow (fluid that needs to move to prevent waste and infections from building up in your body), I realize that Tucker is recommending gentle exercise to increase blood and lymphatic flow as well as improving muscle tone. Hmmm, why didn’t I think of that?
Upon returning from our outing, I head back to the computer for research and ideas for my blog site. I can hear Tucker in the distance lapping up water once again. Hmmm, maybe it’s time for me to drink another glass of water as well. By the time I get downstairs, he has already gone into his crate (which is his “happy place”) and started his afternoon nap. Hmmm, how many hours of sleep did I get last night? Now that I think about it, I only got 5 1/2 hours of sleep. Did my body adequately recover from the activities of the previous day. I don’t feel tired, but symptoms seem to take some time to develop. It seems that Tucker never needs to catch up on sleep. I also notice he doesn’t have a problem falling asleep or staying asleep.
As the day progresses, I begin to notice a recurring pattern. Tucker naps, stretches and shakes his body each time upon awakening, gets a drink of water, and heads to the front door for his walk/run. Hmmm, rather than sitting for prolonged periods of time which recently has been classified as an event that can lead to early death, Tucker gets up periodically to move, exercise, drink water and eat healthy foods. Lesson noted!
As night approaches I once again hear in the distance tags from a collar clinking as I head back down the stairs to see Tucker pacing in front of his food bowl. As I look at my watch and see that 6pm has arrived, I head to the closet to prepare his meal. How did he know it was time to eat? Hmmm, I notice he only asks for food two times a day at nearly the exact times each day. Does he only ask for food when his body tells him he needs it? Maybe eating within a reasonable pattern stabilizes hormones and allows a body to function more efficiently. I also notice his body weight doesn’t fluctuate very much. I never realized how health conscious he was!
I also notice he enjoys life and looks forward to play time after dinner when he pulls each and every toy out of his play chest. He seems to enjoy alternating between chewing on his plush toys and my wife’s arm. Come 9pm, his eyes focus on the wife until she gets up to take him out for his final walk. He enjoys going to bed voluntarily shortly after this final walk. For Tucker his day was filled with fun, food, water, exercise and rest. It is now time to provide his body a well needed recovery for another day of adventures.
As I review this day in its entirety, I have come to realize that my pup’s innate intelligence directs him to enjoy the quality of life he desires. Maybe there is a lesson here we can all learn from this little guy.