Fed up with the inundations of political battles and growing international panic over the coronavirus pandemic, I decided to end the week with something uplifting. I think a dose of frivolity is exactly what we need to help us stay balanced amid the realities that we are facing.
When I think of things that help me to stay balanced, I focus on the benefits and fun of owning and loving a pet. A dear colleague sent me a link to a video of Kratu The Apathetic Dog for stealing the show (and the equipment) at a rescue dog competition.
Kratu first became a viral sensation during last year’s Kennel Club-organized Crufts competition, earning over a million YouTube views for his charming display during the agility competition. Kratu showcased not only his agility but also his inclination to ignore the obstacles, hiding in the tubes and running around the perimeter of the course rather than through it.
During the 2020 competition on March 6 at the National Exhibition Centre (NEC) in Birmingham, Kratu returned with a vengeance, darting in unorthodox directions, playing what appears to be a canine version of hide-and-seek, and claiming his own prize: a pole from a hurdle in the course.
“Kratu’s back at it again,” Crufts said on Twitter (along with two crying-laughing emojis, obviously). The accompanying video of his tremendous display has 1.5 million views as of Monday afternoon. To me, these astounding numbers say two things: it pays to veer from the beaten path in the name of seeking joy, and the zeal and happiness of dogs resonates with humans far and wide.
Watching these videos of Kratu, I can’t help but think of my own special fur babies. Today more than ever, I am so grateful for my dog, Yogi. When I found Yogi (or, when he found me), three years had passed since my wonderful dog Bella crossed over the Rainbow Bridge. She was truly a dear companion to me and will always live on in my heart. I missed having that companionship in my life, but knew I would not settle for just any dog just for the sake of filling a void. One day, I came across an ad that spoke directly to my heart:
“Single white male currently living on a Texas ranch. I’m told I have soulful eyes and have been complimented on the fact that I have all my hair and teeth. I’m always ready for a fun-filled time, going for a walk or playing catch with a Frisbee or a tennis ball. I’m in love the beauty of the west-Texas countryside but also enjoy relaxing around the house. I’m frisky, neutered and I’m a sweet heart. I’m a lover, not a fighter and my favorite thing to do is cuddle in my doggie bed watching Lassie reruns. If my profile fit’s yours, please swipe right for a date.”
After reading that, I concluded that I would invite Yogi to my home for a trial visit. Once I met him, there was no question I wanted to adopt him; Yogi was so sweet, smart and fun that I was swept right off my feet! Yogi moved from the ranch to come home with me permanently, and I couldn’t be happier with my decision. While he’s certainly got some tough paws to fill, we make a good team and have a special bond.
Kratu followed his heart and found boundless happiness beyond the confines of rules and expectations, delighting millions of people in the process. I followed my heart and trusted my gut, which led me to a life of new joy with Yogi.
How has a special dog (or other animal) guided you on the path to joy?
© 2020 Tyra Manning