Skip to main content


A week away in a foreign land. Where the interactions have been abundantly insightful and the lessons for me, once again, enormous. When teaching ethical communication with animals, one cannot help but reflect. Feel clear and ready to ensure my daily reality is refreshed.

So this a blog to thank the Czech Republic animal lovers. And to encourage other animal lovers out there to visit this generous place.

Imagine a place where dogs are allowed in the subways and busses. Where the city funds initiatives to teach school children how to effectively meet dogs on walks. Where every park space is always littered with people sharing moments with their best friends.  Where there are water bowls for dogs wherever you go. Even in the zoo. Where it is common that dogs are allowed to live in apartment buildings. Where I share a train cabin with two people and a dog. Where a family home visit includes a visit with dogs and cats. When in the middle of my seminar in the dog school we are interrupted when horses and dogs enter for a visit.

Imagine that! Where animals are an integral accepted norm in the society.

And it gets better. When you meet and have the good fortune to get to know  the people. And you realise that they are a community that is holistic. They are eager to learn anything that will help their relationships with their dogs. Humbly they share their stories and lessons. They respect each other and family values are paramount. Maternity leave is years long. Children are nurtured alongside the animals. The history is documented in light-hearted art -paintings, architecture and sculpture. Humour is common in these creations. As common as it is in daily conversation. Almost as common as the depictions of their animal friends in the ancient art.

The irony. I leave having learned more than I share. To be invited here is an honour. Everytime I visit I feel more honoured.

Dr Frantisek Susta is a remarkable man. He has introduced positive reinforce  training to Czech. To the zoos as well as domestic animal training. He is brave enough to question the norm.  This bravery means he even questions positive reinforcement.  He has published two books on the lessons he has learned. I look forward to the rest of the world learning from him. He is named after the patron saint of animals. And his commitment to the ethical treatment of animals makes him deserving of the name. He is also a committed family man. And there is no doubt that his children will follow in his  footsteps.  I have learned a great deal from him!!

He is a mirror of the people I have met and worked alongside in my travels to this beautiful place.

I feel grateful for this experience. And a little sad to leave. Czech Republic you have stolen a little of my heart. I take the possibility of a society like this back home with me. I feel inspired to be gentle. And true to what I believe
No compromises. Just joyful truth.

Sent from my Samsung Galaxy smartphone.


Popular posts from this blog

Celebrating miracles - Unicorn magic

 This is a celebration. When I see news like this I figure someone is trying to sell me something! I promise - no strings attached to this story. I simply feel grateful joy that I wish to share❤️ Gandalph arrived as a miraculous event in around 2003. A story for another day. If you look at him in perfect light you can see his magic. My kids grew up knowing he had a unicorn horn. He teaches so many lessons. End of 2020 was a hard lesson.  Two rounds of chemo and the vet visited once more with the news “- a surgical procedure in our surgery is required. We need to remove his eye”. I felt devastated.  I am the daughter of an amazing vet. An intuitive man who taught me about respect for all life forms. He had just left to be a vet in heavenly realms. He had always been my go to at times like this. I called on him for heavenly guidance… I found some interesting alternate therapies through a great rebel. Felt like I had nothing to lose. So dived in and began what I figured would be a hit and

In love with life?

 Best lesson I ever had is summarised as “live what you feel is right rather than fight for it”. I used to be activist about everything. Idealistic to a fault. Setting high standards for myself and focussing on anything threatening. What does this have to do with animals? If I am continually focussing on what I fear I have my defences up. And in this state I cannot see what is good or focus on what works. In so many interactions with people and their animals the script I find that works is to get folk to drop their defences. Help them start to see when things are working. And then celebrate the fact that the more we do this, the more it happens.   Age old wisdom: what we focus on expands♥️ I see a lot of judgment in the worldand notice than when I am in a state of judgement unable to focus on solutions. Judgement keeps me stuck. Becoming present is where I can fall in love with life again. And experience the joy and miracle of the life that surrounds me. 

what is your passion?

Someone asked me what my passion is.  I realised that I had thought I knew, but may have been incorrect.  My passion - I used to say - Animal Behaviour! The lesson - at some point I had identified with the passion rather than be in awe of it. Years back I realised that my life force is driven by the concept of 'wonderment'.  A sense of awe and wonder about the mysteries of animal behaviour is where my labelled passion was identified. On a fabulous run on Durban's ocean promenade, followed by a dip in the amazing Indian Ocean, I realised that 'wonderment' - and experiencing this sensation is in fact my passion.  This is not limited to Animal Behaviour.  Feeling the capacity of what a body can do, and the sensation of the cool ocean after a sweaty run is part of that wonderment.  Noticing a bird on the wing or the glint in a mischievous dolphins eye my experience of wonderment.  Watching fast moving clouds or grass growing through a tar road - that is amazing won