Category Archives: Pets in Transition

Dogs are always rolling with the changes we go through in our lives. It can be very stressful for a dog that has a wonderful home, but for dogs who are homeless it can be a transition that can make or break a dog’s life. A dog in transition can be misunderstood and sometimes it’s a matter of life and death.

Finding the Dog of Your Dreams, part 1

Please enjoy part 1 of this 3 part article to help you find the dog of your dreams!

Finding the Dog of Your Dreams

Part One-

I recently had a client ask my opinion on her adopting a new dog. When I finished telling her an extensive list of my concerns she said I left out the plague. Her feelings were a little hurt, but I always spell it out purposely so that people can get the dogs of their dreams. I want to save some poor dog at no fault of their own, from ending up in a rescue. Re-homing a rescue dog is also very hard on the adoptive family. I don’t want anyone to suffer a broken heart. It is better to know what your needs are and adopt the dog of your dreams, whether it is from a breeder, shelter or rescue.

When you decide that the time has come to add a dog to your family, there are so many things to consider.  What are your needs? Do you live in a building that allows dogs?  Is there a breed restriction in your building, or neighborhood or state? Is there a size restriction? Some apartments and condos dictate that all dogs have to be less than thirty pounds. Some apartments say that you can only have two pets. Is it written in your lease that you can have a dog? If you get a dog can you afford it?  Will you need to pay an extra deposit for each dog?  Will it increase your rent? I have seen so many animals surrendered to rescue because of a misunderstanding between landlords and their tenants. If you are getting a dog and your landlord agrees that it is okay, you need to get this agreement written into your lease. You also need to decide if you are staying in that rental for an extended period of time. Finding another apartment that allows dogs in your price range may be tougher than you think.

There are many other important considerations when adopting a puppy or a dog. Is anyone in your family allergic to dogs? If you are in a relationship and you own a dog together, what happens to the dog if you break up? Can you afford the dog on your own? Will you be able to afford to rent an apartment that does allow dogs on your own?

Are you adopting the right dog for your family? Have you researched a breed that fits into your lifestyle? If you live in an apartment and you’re not a walker, are you willing to hire a dog walker for the sake of your dog’s happiness? All dogs need exercise and leash walking is a great way to train a new dog.

I recently worked with an older woman who adopted two min pin puppies, a female and a male. She loved the puppies but couldn’t keep up with them. Her yard was not fenced in and she was having a hard time walking. After a year she gave up the female because the two puppies were fighting. A few months later she brought the male to me because he was biting not only people that came to her door, but he was biting her as well. He had taken over the house. I gave her lots of help and he was much better, but in the end she couldn’t give him the life he needed and deserved. She had to find him a more suitable home for him. She was heartbroken. The new family was much more suited to his needs. They will be able to give him the exercise and socialization that he deserves.

If you work long hours will there be someone that can walk your dog while you’re gone?  A puppy needs to go out all the time. If they don’t get out enough they will be harder to house train. An adult shelter dog may need to be house trained all over again. If you live in the city and you adopt a dog from the country or from down south it may refuse to poop and pee in the street. I have taught many dogs how to pee on the street and a few others that had never peed in the grass.

One of the dogs, Tess, had spent the first eighteen months of her life in a crate as a breeding prospect.  The breeders decided not to breed Tess and put her up for adoption. When Marilyn brought her to me for help we went for a walk. Tess had never peed in the grass. She would hold her urine and only pee once a day until she became desperate to go.

When she was outside her sensors went into over load. She would look all over and not concentrate on all the wonderful smells. She was nervous and afraid of everything and everyone. Every time she even looked at the ground I would stop and say, “Go pee.” She would the get distracted and I would lead her to a well-marked tree and repeat, “Go pee.” while imagining her doing just that and voila she peed.

I will never forget her face the day she learned to pee in the grass. You could see the relief in her eyes. Ahhhhh!!!!  We praised her and the look on her face was one of confusion and then it shifted to pride. She had to learn to poop in the grass as well. She knew nothing of sniffing the ground like a regular dog. It took some time but Tess learned to be a regular dog with the love and help of her human mom. She learned to love people despite her rough isolated beginning. Tess went on to become a certified therapy dog at her own request. She inspired me right up until her dying day. Tess was an incredible dog that grew emotionally in ways that seemed impossible.

She came to me as one of the most fearful dogs I have ever met and with the love of her mom Marilyn, who became my student, she lived a great trusting life using CinergE, communication, Reiki, positive based training and lots of love.

If you have roommates or family members that live with you is everyone on the same page when it comes to adoption of a dog. Is this dog going to be a shared responsibility? Is everyone going to be involved in choosing the right dog? A dog needs a supportive family.

I recently worked with John who adopted a high energy shelter dog, Bill. He shared his house with a roommate that liked the dog, but played really rough with it while John was at work. When John would come home from work the dog was often so riled up that it concerned him.

One day Bill was overly excited when John came home. Bill was jumping all over him. When he reached down to push his overly excited dog off of him, Bill fell to the ground and peed himself. This was a new developing behavior. His roommate was way too rough and when the dog would get over stimulated. The roommate would harshly discipline the Bill causing him to exhibit submissive behavior.

John quickly found a new roommate. If your adoption is going to be a success everyone in the house should be on the same page when it comes to your new dog.

Can you provide the exercise it requires to have a high energy companion?  Or would a quieter breed be a better choice?  Perhaps an adult dog would be better? Do you have a fenced in yard? Do you travel a lot?  Will you have someone to care for your dog when you’re away?  Can you afford boarding your dog while you’re away?

Can you afford the veterinarian costs? Yearly exams can be quite expensive but are important for your dog’s long term health. Keeping a dog healthy can be expensive. Can you afford health insurance for your dog?

Feeding a high quality food is very important for your dog’s health. Grain free foods are much healthier for your new best friend, but they can be more expensive. Raw diets are great but require keeping the food frozen. Can you provide a good diet? I have found that dog’s that eat junk food have more behavior issues and suffer from health issues and obesity just like people.

If you have never trained a dog you may need help. Can you afford a trainer?  Dogs that are in rescues sometimes need lots of love and boundaries. It’s so sad when a client comes to me with a dog that has no manners and they are at the end of their rope and don’t have the money for a trainer. It takes a village to raise a healthy dog!

If your dog turns out to be a barker will it bother your neighbors? Sheila and her family had lost old Jake to cancer and they were ready for another dog. Lucy, a beautiful mixed breed caught their eye and it was love at first sight. Once Lucy was home the family was a bit surprised by how much work she was to train, but it didn’t matter because they loved her so much. With the help of a trainer things were getting easier, except for one thing -Lucy is a barker.

Sheila has a beautiful fenced in yard and Lucy loves it. Unfortunately she loves to run the fence line and barks at everything. Her neighbors are very upset and they have called the police. Sheila is now working with their trainer on barking. Her family is committed to helping Lucy however they can but, it has been a real journey. They love Lucy and feel she is worth every dime they have spent on her. Even though it has meant cutting back on other discretionary things, she is worth it to them.

If you’re not sure what kind of a dog you want, why not volunteer at a local shelter before making the pet plunge.  You can volunteer to walk the dogs, play with them or simply sit with them and just love them.  Spending time with shelter dogs is a win-win for both you and the dogs. The dog of your dreams may be there just waiting for you.

If you fall in love with a shelter dog keep visiting the dog and get to know her before you take her home. Ask if you can take her for walks as this will help you get to know her before the next big transition of taking her home. Bring the whole family and your other dogs to meet the dog. Know what you are committing to and don’t make an impulsive choice. There are too many lives that will be affected. If you have cats, make sure your new prospect is a cat lover. Dogs can learn to love cats, but it can take a lot of time and energy.

Adopting a dog from a rescue is a major transition for all involved and is one of the most rewarding experiences you can ever have with the right dog for your family.  These dogs so deserve a happy life and can make the best family dogs. It is up to us to make the transition easier so everyone involved will be happy. So often we are so excited by the prospect of adopting a dog we may overlook some of the important details to help make the transition easier. We are filled with the thoughts of how great it’s going to be and can sometimes forget that we can run into difficulties.

If you choose to buy from a breeder you will need to research carefully. There are great breeders out there, but you will need to find the one who is honest and stands behind their dogs.  Ask your veterinarian for a referral.  If you know someone who has a breed of dog that you love and their dog is a great example of the breeding program, ask who the breeder is.

Finding a local breeder is the best choice for you and the puppy.  Shipping a puppy on a plane and picking it up at the airport is incredibly stressful for a young dog. Flying can be very stressful for people, so can you imagine what it can be like for a puppy that’s just lost his/her mother?  I have worked with many fearful dogs from great out of state breeders and the one thing they all have shared was being shipped by plane from out of state. If you choose a dog from out of state why not consider a driving vacation to pick it up? Remember that just like children, puppies get car sick and not all hotels will give you a room with a dog in tow.

I transported a pit bull rescue from Florida to New York. It was her last chance for a good life. She was sick and her time was running out. I was exhausted by 10:30 driving through at night in Georgia. I was in the middle of nowhere and I couldn’t find a hotel off the interstate that would let me sleep with my rescue.

I was so tired, but determined to get this dog to a safe haven. I finally found a trucker hotel. They let me bring in my dog, but it was scary. The safety lock on my hotel door had been ripped off, the room was dirty. I propped a chair under the door knob and slept in my clothes with the sweet pitty girl tucked into my side. The second night was no easier. I found a Best Western in a very bad neighborhood that took us in.

I never for a second questioned my choice of saving this dog. She was taken to a rescue where she was nursed back to health and adopted out to a wonderful home. She deserved a second chance.

When you buy from a local breeder you can visit the puppy while he/she is still with the mother. Ask them for personal references from other people who have purchased puppies from them. Also ask to meet the father, or other siblings from different litters. Remember like father, like son.  If you feel people are being evasive of your questions about the parents then trust your intuition and keep looking.  When you use your intuition it can save you and your family from heart break later.

In the beginning, your new family member will require lots of TLC, time, and devotion. Some dogs who have been in rescue bounce back and forth from one home to the next making the transition that much more difficult.  They may have separation anxiety. “He was so cute we didn’t think he was capable of that kind of destruction.”  It is our responsibility to make the relationship work by setting it up for success.  Can you plan a to be home for the weekend so you can be there to ease the transition and be there for your new dog? Trainers are suggesting to not take extended time off from work when you adopt a new dog. The transition is much tougher after your new buddy has had a week of your undivided attention. It is a setup for separation anxiety.

Joe the boxer mix came from Georgia to New York on a tractor trailer transport filled with thirty dogs and cats. His new guardians saw his picture online and fell in love. When they picked him up they were given no information about him. They didn’t know he had severe separation anxiety. The first time they left him, he went on a rampage and tore up their recliner and couch beyond repair. They are working hard to make it work but they are unsure they can help him. He may need more help than they can give him.

-Stay tuned for Part Two!-

To find about classes with Cindy Brody, click here.

To book an appointment in person or long distance with Cindy, contact us here.

Share Button

When Death Comes as a Surprise

As an Animal Communicator, I often work with animals that are sick and sometimes dying. It is an aspect of my work that I love. Through CinergE I can teach people how to help ease their beloved pet’s pain and suffering.

Often times a dog that is getting ready to die will have so much to say to his people. He will give last minute advice on what their beloved two legged mom and dad need to work on. Mom needs to start painting again, dad needs to make more time for exercise. Don’t worry so much about the kids are things I hear so often from dogs that are leaving us.

Other times it seems like death comes without a warning and these are the passings that are so hard for us to except. Last spring I had a dog come to my office with his family. He was suffering from severe back pain and was under the care of a wonderful veterinarian. His mom brought him to me to see if I could help. He was a funny little guy, even though he was in pain.

He spoke about his family and it was clear how much he cared for them and how much they loved him. He was a part of the heartbeat of their family. He was very attached to mom as she was to him.

I worked very gently with him and taught his family what they could do to help him. They were great students and I could see they would bring comfort to their boy. It was a lovely session. I asked them to bring him back in a week for a follow up.

The next week came and when they brought their sweet little guy to me he was feeling so much better. He walked around with a bright eye and was even a little fresh. I loved his little man, big man attitude. He spoke of his family and was as always very much in tune with them. I breathed a sigh of relief that it looked like he had a good life ahead of him.

I gave his mom more instruction on how to help him with his back and hoped someday she would come and study with me. It was clear she had done her homework as the little man was feeling fine. He never once said to me he felt like he was dying, but he was to leave us shortly.

I just found out about his passing and I wonder how I could have missed it. I replay the sessions in my mind and I see a little dog feeling better on his second visit. I sat back and meditated on this story and I think I have some peace of mind about it now.

Dogs live in the moment and when they are feeling good they don’t worry about tomorrow, like us humans. Maybe he didn’t want to burden his family. As I reflect back, he really did have messages for everyone in his family, just like other dogs do in their final days. He just didn’t appear to be as sick or in as much pain as most dogs who are getting ready to pass over the Rainbow Bridge.

My job is to help ease suffering and I think we were successful with easing this dog’s pain and making his last days a little better. As I send energy through a client’s body it is always for the greater good. Sometimes the greater good is the ending of suffering and the great release into the heavens.

His family knew how he felt about them and what he wanted them to know about how they could help themselves, through his little angel eyes.

I do believe our animals are angels sent to help us navigate through this beautiful but sometimes brutal world. I give thanks every day for the love that they bring to their families and to me.  I do have the best job. Sometimes, not very often, I’ll lose a client and it is a surprise, but it’s best to trust in the law of nature and God’s will. When it is our time to go, it may come without warning.

I recently spoke with an animal that crossed over and she said it was brilliant! She said she was twirling through the air with her sister who had left a couple of months earlier. The vision was so beautiful it was so much like my own near death experience. It was like wisps of fog swirling together, or snow whirling with the wind through an open field.

We fear death more than anything, for ourselves and for our loved ones. I have to believe that thought forms never die, because I’m very good at talking with those who have crossed over, thoughts are energy and energy never dies. I have always said that death is a great release for a soul, but painful for those of us left behind. I feel very certain that we will all be joined again in energy and thought forms with our loved ones, whether you call it heaven or another realm, I do believe our energy lives on and that our angels watch over us as we walk this earth and if we are lucky enough our heart dogs will be returned to us. I now really believe in dog reincarnation.

I give thanks for the happy little dog that came to my office with such joy and friskiness. I send his family healing energy for the loss of their loved one.  I will continue to bring love and healing to all my friends four legged and two legged.

To find about classes with Cindy Brody, click here.

To book an appointment in person or long distance with Cindy, contact us here.

Share Button

Petal aka Bee or The Beetle “We Will Always Be Together”

The first time I met Petal, a tri-colored Pit Bull was when she was first diagnosed with lymphoma. Her soul mate Jane had heard about my work and wanted to see if I could help her best friend feel better. Her heart was breaking; Petal had changed her life in the eight years they had been together. She couldn’t imagine her life without her. Jane wanted to do whatever she could to make her sweet dog more comfortable.

petalAs I walked up to Jane’s front door I could hear dogs excitedly barking. Through the glass door I could see Jane’s two dogs, Joshua and Petal. They both had floppy toys in their mouths and their hips and tails were wagging wildly, doing the happy dance. They were so excited to have company. Even though we had never met they greeted me like a long lost friend. Jane came to the door and let me in and the dogs were all wiggles and giggles. I looked at Petal and saw the twinkle in her eye and she proceeded to draw me into her sweet soul and into her heart. I could see she was one cool dog and I could feel from that instant that she would also have things to teach me. It was clear to see that she was wise by the expression on her face. She also had a look on her face that was very game and ready to play.  I didn’t know then what she would teach me about life and in the end she taught me so much and it changed my life.

We all walked into the kitchen and Petal ran straight to her bed where she promptly dropped her toy. She was smiling at me from ear to ear. Had I not known that she was a very sick dog, I would have never believed it.  She shined for me and I shined for her.

Petal knew I was there for her and as I sat on the floor her tail thumped the bed. Joshua her best friend, also a Pit Bull sat closely with a watchful soft eye. He was so handsome and sweet. I believe in love at first sight and these dogs were so generous with their love they had me at the first woof and waggle.

I treated sweet Petal in her round, faux leopard skin bed. She curled up on her side, closed her eyes and waited for me to help her, as I gently placed my hands on her body I felt the Reiki begin to flow. My hands instantly became very hot. This was the first sign that she was a sick dog. When my hands heat up quickly I know there is an illness or an injury. Even though she was very happy in her life, I knew she really wasn’t feeling so good. She was a tough dog and I know she didn’t want Jane to worry.

She lay back and with her eyes closed sweetly as she took in the energy. Petal would slowly take in a deep breath and then give a long lovely sigh. She wore a peaceful smile on her face. As I worked on her she would occasionally raise an eyelid to keep an eye on Jane. She loved her beyond words.

Over the next four years that we worked together Petal had a lot of advice for Jane. Petal worried that Jane worked too much and that she needed help with her businesses. One of Jane’s missions was to make the world a different place for Pit Bulls and all dogs. Petal wanted Jane to “get a life” outside of work. With Petal’s suggestions Jane made many changes in her business. As a result she has been able to help dogs all over the world. Petal would always tattle on Jane when she would work too hard or get stressed out.

Petal’s sense of humor was never affected by her illness. Once while I was working with Jane she decided to sort through my appointment book. She spread all of the business cards out like a deck of cards and only chewed the ones I didn’t need. How did she know? She knew so much.

Jane had a guest one time that Petal avoided, she asked me to ask her why. Her answer was simple, “She doesn’t shine for me.” It was true this person wasn’t a dog person. Petal loved people to shine for her and her family and friends always did, she was a special girl, her love knew no limits.

Petal out lived her prognosis over and over again. She had an oncologist who watched her carefully. She was treated like a celebrity whenever she would visit his office. No matter how much she was poked and prodded she was always the perfect patient. Whenever she needed another round of chemo I would be there to treat her and she’d feel better immediately.

She had our treatments down to a science, I would treat one side of her body, and then, without my asking, she would flip over onto the other side, and then onto her back for her favorite part of the treatment, Reiki on her sweet, pink tummy.

During that time she would rally over and over again. She taught me so much about strength of character. No matter how sick she felt she was always happy.  Petal loved me and trusted me to help her. She was such a good friend. As I write this article I know she is cheering me on from the other side of the rainbow bridge.

She never stopped trying to get better all the way to the very end of her life. She wanted to stay with Jane forever. Petal in the end succumbed to a different invasive cancer. Before she left us we had one final session where she spoke to us and gave us her best advice.

“Jane, we are two halves of a circle. Where you end, I begin. Where I begin, you end. Love has no limits, we will always be together. I will return to you and when I do you will recognize me. Promise you will continue to get the help you need with your work so that you can experience the joyful life you have given me.”

She then turned to me and said, “Take care of the dogs, and they will take care of you. You need to write and have our voices heard.”

Petal passed away a few days later in the bed wrapped in the arms she loved so dearly, Jane’s.

Petal I know you are still with us and I thank you for your continued love and encouragement. Jane and I have both taken your advice. Jane has hired people to help her help all dogs and because of your wise advice I am reaching out to dogs, cats and all animals all over the country. I am sharing their thoughts and wisdom for they love us and watch us and want to help us. By listening to their stories I am helping to make the world a better place. I thank you with all my heart.


Share Button


When I first met Faith, a beautiful blue grey, Pit Bull puppy, she had just arrived from New Orleans, Louisiana post Hurricane Katrina. Faith and hundreds of other stressed out homeless dogs who had lived through the violent storm were sent to rescues all over the country. Faith was shipped to a Pit Bull rescue in upstate New York in hopes that she would find a new life. She had survived the Hurricane and by the grace of God and many good people, was now in a safe haven.shutterstock_77702386

When I first met Faith at the rescue I found her in a warm and cozy adoption room. She was curled up into a tight ball on a brown coach. Her rescuers were very concerned for her, between surviving the hurricane, losing her family, and being shipped north, she was very stressed out. They could see she was a beautiful young dog with a long life in front of her and they wanted to help her any way they could. It was clear that this puppy was very depressed and frightened. She was not thriving.

I walked over and sat next to her on the coach. She didn’t look up at me she burrowed a little deeper. I placed my hand lightly on her back; she then shifted and tucked her nose into a crack between the cushions. She didn’t look at me; it was as if she wanted to hide away from all people. I could feel her sadness. I sat with her and as I touched her the Reiki gently flowed from my hands. I kept sending her peace and love from my heart. It is amazing how this practice can help to shift a client in crisis.

Within a few minutes she got up and curled her body to fit snuggly against mine. I could feel her warmth as she cuddled up next to me. I continued to send her a soothing flow of Reiki. I could feel her sweet body relax. It wasn’t long before she opened up and began to talk to me. Her voice was sad and frightened. “I couldn’t save them. I was their baby and they loved me with all of their hearts. We were always together. I slept with them every night snuggled safely against them. We were in the water. I tried to stay close to them, but I couldn’t save them.”

She then got up and moaned a mournful sound from deep in her belly. I felt it in the pit of my stomach. She climbed onto my lap and cuddled closely. I rocked her like a baby. I held her close to my heart and promised her she would be okay, that we would find her a new home, a new safe life.

Her rescuers all stood quietly as they watched me talk with Faith. There were tears in their eyes. She had been found chained to her owners. She could swim and they could not. They had drowned.

I told her she couldn’t save her people. It wasn’t her fault. We continued to rock and I could feel the quiet in her body.After our session Faith began to come back to life. She was playful, sweet and was healing inside and out. It wasn’t long before Faith found her forever home and a new job. She was adopted by a minister and his wife. She now goes into prisons and helps to bring comfort to people. She is helping to save people and to bring them love and hope.


Share Button

Shadow Slips Into the Light

Shadow has been one of the most courageous dogs I have ever met. She was a black German Shepard who had been battling lupus for the past three years. She lived her life with dignity and grace, always challenging her illness for just one more walk to the Comeau, one more swim in the Big Deep or one more trip to the Continue reading

Share Button

Jesse’s Challenges

I gave an interview for a magazine last week and the writer asked me what my success rate is, I told her it depended on the care givers commitment. This story illustrates what can happen when you give your heart and soul to a troubled dog. Jesse’s story would have had a very sad ending had it not been for Tammy and Amanda. This story shows that love can conquer all!

Share Button

Update on Jolie

There would be no more crying or worrying around Jolie. They were to tell her that she was a good dog, so beautiful, and that she was going to have a great life. I reassured her that the shelter was going to help her and that she was going to find a great home, the perfect home. As I talked to her we could see the depression lifting. She sat up and was looking at her friends. Everyone was smiling and feeling her relief. I suggested that the shelter workers play with her and make her feel like a regular dog—no more worrying about her. She was such a sensitive dog that she was sponging their worries. By shifting the energy around Jolie, she found happiness.

Continue reading

Share Button

Jolie’s Story

JolieJolie was a new resident at the pit bull rescue. They thought she was around six-years -old. It was clear to see by looking at her that she had been used as a breeding machine. Her nipples sagged inches away from her body and her sweet face reflected much sadness and stress. Her breeding days had left many scars, both physical and mental.

Continue reading

Share Button