Before her second birthday, Cholula’s had the secrets to simple happiness figured out already.
A dog’s life is pretty fabulous, at least in this household.
toy box is overflowing with squeaky, furry things and ragged tennis
balls. She prefers to sit shotgun on road trips, or in my lap (she
weighs 50 pounds). She freely hogs the best part of the bed. She offers
her skills as taste-tester when I’m cooking, under my feet with one ear
She fully expects to be a part of any adventure we embark upon— and 90% of the time, she is.
Cholula’s part of the family, one of us. We are a pack, and she knows it.
Spoiled? Maybe. Loved? No question.
German Shepherd and half Chocolate Lab, Cholula’s the perfect
combination of sweet and smart. Sure, she’s just a dog— but I’m
convinced that the lessons I’ve learned from her could benefit just
1. Every day is a new beginning.
Dogs don’t hold grudges from last year—or even yesterday. Cholula happily forgets when
I run out of time for a trip to the dog pond with her. She wakes up
ready for adventure, with a wagging tail and boundless energy, even
2. Stretching is good for you.
very first thing Cholula does when she gets out of (our) bed is stretch
into a good and deep downward dog move with a little “Wow, that feels good” groan.
If she’s been down for a while, she follows that up with a hip flexor
thing, sometimes kicking one leg out for the extra stretch. Then, she’s
ready for the day and any activity it might hold.
3. Be yourself.
when she’s done something wrong, Cholula might slink toward us shyly
trying to look adorable. But dogs don’t know how to be anything but real. They
don’t struggle with self-acceptance. If they are happy, they show it.
If they’re annoyed, you know it. Cholula’s many quirks are endearing and
make us love her more.
4. Don’t underestimate the power of a nap.
Cholula is tired, she stops. Instead of trudging through the day
groggily, she’ll just lie down and recharge with a power nap. When she
wakes up, she’spresent and cheerful.
5. Patience pays off.
will sit still while watching me scurry around the kitchen, wistfully
and intently watching as I transfer bacon from the pan to a plate.
She’s willing me
to drop a piece for her. Or, she’ll perch herself next to my desk chair
as I type away with her squeaky fox in her mouth watching me work but,
hoping for attention. She knows that if she just sits there long enough,
I’ll cave. I always do. Good things come to those who wait.
6. Exercise should be fun.
matter how many times I throw that tennis ball into the water, Cholula
always musters the energy to dive in after it— and comes back to me,
panting, wagging,begging for more. Exercise for her isn’t an obligation, it’s a pleasure.
7. Always sneak in one more snuzzle.
We call them sniper kisses and Cholula is a pro. I’m amazed at how importantphysical attention is to her— she’ll always go in for just one more blissful
belly rub, one more sigh-inducing ear massage. She greedily enjoys as
much affection as we’ll give and returns the favor.
8. When you love someone, make sure they know it.
hates when we’re gone and cries with joy when we return. She wags when
we enter a room. She follows us around the house, parking herself near
us when we land. She lays her ears back sweetly and scoots in for a good
morning cuddle the moment we open our eyes. We never question Cholula’s
feelings for us.
Love should be obvious and complete.
every dog gets the royal treatment like our little princess. But behind
those sweet brown eyes there’s a wisdom we can all learn from. Life is
about simple joys, healthy activities, occasional treats, and unabashed