Simple Happiness: Warm Your Belly in the Sun

We both love laying outside on a warm day, basking in the sunshine. If it’s too cold to go outside, we’ll find a sun spot inside for our nap. Many years ago our Mom found a doggie door that we could use to go out on the deck by ourselves. It is in the big screen door, so it has to be a pretty nice day for us to be able to use it. If the door is closed because it’s too cold or too hot, we’ll ask Mom or Dad over and over again to go outside. We’ll lie in the sun until we get too hot, then go back inside to cool off before wanting to go out again (Mom says this is why she got us our own door, so we didn’t always have to ask). It’s a time for us to nap, smell the air around us, and listen to the birds and sounds of our neighborhood. In summer, I love going out and stalking and snapping at those big wood-boring bees, but Bimmer doesn’t like them because they make a loud buzzing sound and when he sees or hears me snap at one, he runs back inside to find a different sun spot to lay in. It’s almost like the bee and I are playing a game of chase, sometimes for an hour at a time. Unfortunately for the bee, at least a few times a year I actually catch one, but another one always shows up to continue the game. (You’ll learn about the bee another time.) When it’s cold outside, we’ll find a sun spot...

Notice something new and exciting in the routine of your life.

As part of our normal routine, twice a day, we go for a walk around our neighborhood. Mom likes to mix it up for us and take different routes (she often lets us decide when to turn or cross the street), but we’re still staying in our neighborhood. For us, though, every walk is exciting. We get to go out and see and smell what’s been happening since the last time we were there. We look for the birds, bunnies, chipmunks, and if we’re lucky, a groundhog or a flock of geese or turkeys (or even a deer!). We sniff around to learn which of our dog friends have been out and about. We run through the long grasses because it tickles our bellies. We’ll try and bring home an acorn or pinecone or some other fantastic treasure. We’re excited every time we get to go out because we know we’ll find something new. The Dog to Human Translation: All people have routines, whether you go to work every day or are home taking care of your kids (both 2-legged and 4-legged). Even if your daily schedule doesn’t vary much, it’s important to discover something new in each day. It goes back to that appreciation of the little things in life we talk about so often in Dogs Know Best. Each new day brings a new environment. If you really do think things never change in your day, we challenge you to look very closely and pay attention tomorrow and find what is different. Make it a game and stretch your frame of reference to observe and recognize the...