Promoting understanding
and compassion for animals



Talking to animals

Posted in: Di's diary7 Comments

I know you should never judge a book by the cover but sometimes, I must admit I do.

A few months ago I pulled into a local vet surgery to pick up some worming medicines. A gold Lexus was parked in the car-park and I pulled up alongside. In the waiting room was an immaculately dressed man in his mid to late 60’s with silver hair and a beard. He nodded at me as I entered but that was the extent of our interaction. For the next few minutes he sat, stony faced, with his excitable border collie pup by his side. Suddenly his phone rang and he answered it. The conversation was brief and unemotional, punctuated by numerous uh-ha’s, yes’s and ‘okay’.

Although I wasn’t aware that I was judging him, my subconscious was obviously working overtime because what happened next left me speechless.

He put the phone back into his pocket and patted the dog on the head and said “That was your Mum. She’s caught in some traffic so she won’t be able to make it but she’ll meet us at home. She said to be a brave girl, it’s just a needle and it won’t hurt.”

Suddenly my heart melted for this man who only moments before I had thought of as cold and snobbish. He obviously had a very soft side, even if only reserved for his dog.

I thought I would share this story with you as I was reminded of it after reading one of my friends comments in the ‘Welcome and introduce yourself’ post. Shona wrote “I now find that my regard for people is affected by my perception of their regard for animals, and in some cases, my prejudice against someone has been completely erased after witnessing their affection for an animal!”

My nuggy bear

It also helps me to feel a little less ‘unusual’ when I tell Marlee that he’s my ‘nuggy bear” or that ‘we won’t be long darling’ when we have to go out and leave him behind. I have always spoken to my animals, sometimes I even answer for them because I know them so well I can just imagine what they would say in reply. Does that make me crazy? Does it really matter?

What matters is that my animals trust me and speaking to them is one of the ways I can build trust and show my love. There is a wonderful quote that says “Until one has loved an animal, a part of one’s soul remains unawakened”. I truly believe this.

What about you? Do you speak to your animal friends? What do you say and do you care if people hear you?

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  1. Chris Solomons said on 07/05/2011 at 2:45 pm

    I have always talked to my animals… ex used to say that I would often “channel” them too!!…. Somehow you just know what they are thinking and you know they know what you are saying to them….

  2. Shona said on 08/05/2011 at 12:44 pm

    I always speak for them. Literally. If I get a sideways look from my Mister, I will provide his speech by saying “I don’t want to be too obvious, but I really hope some of that toast is for me!”
    Ha ha.

  3. Shona said on 08/05/2011 at 12:45 pm

    And then I answer him. “Don’t worry Mister, I’ll save you a bit of the crust.”

  4. Margi Thurgood said on 09/05/2011 at 7:42 am

    I always talk to any cats and ducks that I see in my travels as well as my own cats.

  5. Debbie Clare said on 10/05/2011 at 11:09 am

    HI Di, Deb here again. When we talk to our animals, they recognise us as their familiy. Our ferrets respond to us when we speak to them & they have their own ways of communication with us as well. For instance, our youngest group of four ferrets lay near their milk bowl when they need a top up of milk. They are probably the cheekiest of all of our 11 ferrets.
    One of our little sable girls, Possum, suffered some kind of terrible abuse before she ended up in our family & it took us 2 solid weeks of gentle words, hugs & kisses & reassurance that she was safe before she began dancing. She now knows that we would never hurt her & that we will always protect her. Our animals depend on us to know when they are hungry, sad, or even hurting. By watching our ferrets play, I can easily tell if they are feeling unwell & usually I am right. They may not be able to speak as we do but they do need to know that we will look after them 24 hours a day. By watching our animals, we can understand them & they can understand us. I believe that a true animal lover can read their animals as if they were their own children. Our animals depend on us for a healthy & happy life & we depend on them just as much. I would be a very sad & lonely person without my animals to talk to. They do not judge us, only love us as much as we love them.
    On another note, I have seen Duke several times since his little upset & it is really great to see him doing so well.

  6. Diana said on 10/05/2011 at 12:29 pm

    It’s good to see that I’m not the only one talking to my animals-and answering for them (although I had a sneaking suspicion I wouldn’t be). I actually think the people who don’t talk to their animals are the odd ones. You know the type, they ‘own’ a cat or dog and then lock it outdoors. They’re also the type of people who talk about what sort of dog or cat they’re going to get when their present one dies. Oh god I could go on… Maybe another blog topic???
    I think channeling is actually a good word Chris. I was sort of tongue-in-cheek about answering for pets but it wouldn’t surprise me in the slightest if we do actually channel their thoughts. When you have such a close bond with an animal, I’m sure this is exactly what happens over time.
    Deb I think it is great to hear from someone which such an unusual pet and that they respond like all other animals to kind and gentle words. Not only that but they can communicate so clearly to you as well. I would love to meet them. I have never held or patted a ferret but as an animal lover, I love them as I love all animals.

  7. lily said on 28/06/2011 at 8:02 am

    I surprisingly chatted to a possum the other night. As I was walking along, I noticed what looked to be a feral, skinny cat, but discovered it to be a possum. It seemed unfazed by my presence and so a conversation began. He stayed for awhile and so did I. It was very pleasant to be so close to this friendly, little critter.

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