Usually I'm a proponent of individuality. I embrace uniqueness. But right now, as I look at the dogs lying at my feet I am thrilled to be one of many. It makes me happy to know that there are thousands of people just like me, looking down at their dogs and feeling the same way that I do.
We are a nation of dog lovers. We may not always agree on the best way to train them...or what to feed them...or whether adopting a dog or purchasing a puppy is the way to go...but we all feel a similar thrill when our eyes meet the eyes of the dogs in our lives.
Yes, there are people out there who view dogs as property, yard ornaments or as subordinate beings, but I choose not to allow those people into my world. I cannot change the mind of a person with that type of belief system. As a dog trainer I concentrate instead on the folks who love their dogs, but lack the tools and knowledge to fully develop a healthy and cooperative relationship. In my personal life I surround myself with people who cannot help but smile when they see a puppy...people who understand the peace of watching a gray faced companion asleep by your side.
We love our dogs. I am content to be common place, one of many... just like you.
- my dogs, my world
- My name is Lesli Hyland. In my forty seven years on this earth, my home and my heart have been graced with the company of twenty dogs. Many came to me as seniors. All of them taught me something and helped determine the course of my life. I am a dog trainer because of them. I met my friends because of them. My husband and I are are forever bonded by our mutual connection to them. As a dog trainer I have access to other people's dogs and I am allowed to share in their unique relationships. The dogs make me a better person by forcing me to closely examine my motivation, my actions and my choices. Everything I do affects their behavior, safety and happiness. It is an awesome responsibility. The dogs keep me honest.