Hi, Frens! It's me—Chauncey.
If you’ve ever felt like your dog is the only one who understands what’s going on with you, well…it’s because they do.
Dogs are empathetic and intuitive creatures who feel your pain and can bring you joy.
In case you’re new here, I’m Chauncey, a Dog Life Coach for hoomans. You guys experience all sorts of issues: stress, self-doubt, burnout —you name it. And I use my Dogness to offer ideas for relaxation techniques and feeling better from the Dog perspective.
I mean, if you think about it, who knows more about living your best life than doggos? Exactly.
Maybe you didn’t know that Dog Life Coaches existed, let alone that we had unique techniques for dealing with everyday stressors.
Thank Dog you know now.
Dog Life Coach Tips for Coping with Stress when life is growling at you
You’re down in the dumps.
AND, it feels like you’ve been there for eternity – in dog years. Bleh.
As a Dog Life Coach, I’m here to help ya’ll by sharing five Dog tips for coping with stress. M’kay, ready? Here we go!
1. Stop and sniff the flowers
Flowers or fire hydrants maybe. Or other stuff.
If you have ever been for a walk with a pupper, then you know how important it is that they make time to savor what they find interesting. They sniff and they love sniffing.
At first, you might be concerned that sniffing everything in sight will make you seem like a compulsive weirdo. That’s pretty normal and can be overcome with practice. If anyone gives you grief for doing something so important for your self-care, just ignore them. M’kay? They’re probably just jealous of your impeccable dogness anyway.
The more you take advantage of sensory savoring abilities like sniffing, it will start to feel natural and easy. Sniffing things is also a great way to interrupt negative thinking spirals, too.
Savoring with your senses can help bring you back into the present moment if your mind has begun racing with worry or feelings of anxiety. It’s also excellent for grounding yourself if stressful situations have caused your energy to scatter.
2. Sit on the porch and watch birbs
Taking a moment of pause throughout your day to just be present and connect with the world around you can give you clarity. And,who knows? This might be one of the best dog gone tips for getting out of fight or flight mode. Get it? Cause birbs? And, birbs fly? As in flight? It’s supposed to be punny.
One of the most relaxing things I know is to sit on the porch and watch birbs. This can be especially good in summer when there’s more daylight. It’s not just about watching birbs —it’s about being present with what is right in front of you.
If it sounds simple, that’s because it is! Just take a moment to stop what you were doing, unplug from social media, sit down, and look outside.
Take notice of how the evening light falls across your yard and reflects off the leaves on the trees. Feel how warm the sun is on your bose or ears aor something. Listen carefully and you might hear a bird you can’t even see chirping from a tree somewhere. You could hear cars driving past, or kids playing across the street.
Just take a mental note of whatever you experience. Your goal here isn’t to judge things as good or bad; just accept them for what they are at this moment in time (no matter how annoying they might seem, like kids screaming or lawn mowers).
The more you do this, the more accepting and patient you can be with yourself, with others, and with whatever comes your way.
3. Go for a walk
Explore your neighborhood. Find new things, other dogs, and weird smells.
The third thing you can do to feel better is to go for a walk. Dogs love exploring new places—and who wouldn’t? Getting outside regularly is one of the best ways people can keep themselves happy because nature is beautiful ! When you’re walking around, take the time to appreciate your surroundings. Notice what’s going on around you.
Going for a walk on your own or with your dog is great exercise, and it gives you time to clear your head. Taking walks around town or hiking trails are also great ways to build confidence and reduce stress levels because getting fresh air gives people energy boosts that can last throughout their whole day.
Try taking a new route or exploring parts of your neighborhood that are unfamiliar when you go walking today! You might meet new people and other dogs, and pause to enjoy all of the weird smells along the way. Walking will give you time to reflect, but it will also help you feel more connected with others in your community.
4. Use your outside woof
Have you ever thought to yourself, “I just need to have a good cry,” but it went on and on? And on?
Don’t get me wrong, it’s perfectly ok to let yourself feel sad and angry. But, it sucks to be stuck there. After all that crying, one can feel like a Dog in a housecoat – -all flopped over and barely able to get back up.
While Dogs sometimes feel like a dog in a housecoat, we are mostly known for silly antics. Plus, for looking super cute in housecoats. Am I wrong?
We Dogs definitely don’t let things get too serious most of the time. My secret? I woof. Sometimes it’s an inside woof, others it’s an outside woof. No matter what, it’s a real, good and proper woof. I try to never miss a single day.
You’ve got an even better option, and it’s something you already know how to do: Laugh. Laugh every day. When life gets overwhelming, remember that laughing can be as therapeutic as, say, taking CBD gummies or getting a foot massage— and it doesn’t cost anything!
So why is laughing so important? Well, for one thing, it’s scientifically proven to:
- Lower stress hormones
- Boost the immune system and infection-fighting antibodies
- Trigger the release of endorphins (a natural pain reliever)
- Improve memory
I know what you’re thinking: “How could something so simple as a laugh do all this?” And, sure enough, scientists are still looking for an answer to that exact question.
Anyhoo, lots of studies have shown laughter’s important benefits. So yuck it up.
5. Know what's wag worthy
Remember all of the things that make you wag your tail – the things you’re grateful for in life – despite what circumstances are at hand. This could be your pack, frens, sunny days, your favorite stuffy, or even that you have a nice bed to sleep in tonight.
Since you have thumbs, I suggest you write these things down and keep them somewhere where you can see them each day. Feeling stressed out or anxious about something? Try going over your list and seeing if it helps put things into perspective.
Pawsome Tip: If you don’t have and/or want to use thumbs, a voice memo on your phone or using voice-to-text dictation work, too. Or, you could call and leave yourself a voice mail. That’s an ancient practice used from the 1900s.
If putting together a “gratitude list” isn’t really your thing, try focusing on one person or thing you’re grateful for each day before bedtime. Reflect on how they make your life better and how they’ve helped shape who you are today. This can be a fab way to wind down from a long day and get some rest before tomorrow’s challenges.
Wiener dog tips to cope with stress and feel freakin' awesome
These were some of my most wag-worthy strategies for stress management- they are dog-inspired and dog-tested. I think that any good dog has tried at least some of them at one time or another. Hope you’ll try these out next time you need to cope with stress yourself, too.
Normally you’ll know if it’s working for you by how you feel afterward. Do you feel happier, less anxious, or just relaxed? Does it feel like your fight or flight response has turned off? Feeling less stressed? If so, then that’s a good sign!
Everyone is different. Some dogs are wiener dogs, some are spaniels, some are poodles. Good but not the same, right?. So if you still feel overwhelmed or that your mood is just bleh, don’t freak out. Just try something else. Try another one of these activities or even something different like texting a friend or eating your lunch outside. (or you could call someone if you prefer a retro 20th Century vibe.)
I hope you”ll find my tips helpful for breaking out of a funk. Dog Life Coaches don’t want you to be just any hooman, but the best hooman you can be! So give one of these tips a try, then let me know how it went.
PS: Absolutely love to hear success stories from frens and fans!
PPS: Have go-to methods for when you feel stressed? We’d love to highlight your best ideas, too.
Chauncey Withers is a Dachshund with a degree in um, everything. He received his degree in dog school, and has gone on to become a dog life coach. He is also co-CEO of Keep Digging, LLC. Chauncy feels like a big dog on the inside, but acts like a dachshund on the outside.
He is happily married to his wife Dulcinea Withers, a cat with a PhD. She’s occupied much of her time disproving the idea that cats and dogs can’t get along.
The Withers love to spend a lot of time napping and looking out the window together. They also like hanging out with their hoomans.
April is Stress Awareness Month
While April is Stress Awareness Month, it is not the only month when we need to be aware of stress. It can happen at any hour in any month of the year.
Stress impacts most people at one time or another. For some, it becomes overwhelming and has effects on physical and mental health.
The American Institute of Stress offers easy to understand information to help people identify and cope with stress. Check their website to assess your stress level or learn more about your feelings.
Another excellent resource for knowledge about stress is the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) . Their website covers stress management and prevention, as well as information about support and treatments.