What dogs teach us about joy and compassion?

Published: 30-03-2021

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For a very long time, dogs have been considered one of the friendliest pets human beings can have. These lovely creatures not only show their owners a high level of feelings, but also make every effort to please them. Various videos and photos have also surfaced online showing how compassionate, empathetic and caring dogs can be. Although dogs don’t have higher thinking capacity, like humans do, they still have a lot of intriguing lessons that humans can learn from their behaviour.

So how can dogs teach us compassion? How can a dog with relatively less developed thinking capacity have noble character traits such as joy and kindness that human beings can learn from? Let’s take a closer look and discuss these possibilities.


Dogs and humans. What is the real relationship?

A neuroscientist Gregory Berns once studied how the dog’s brain works. He wanted to find out what the real trigger of tail wagging is when dogs see their owners. He looked for a response to the description of the stimuli behind the compassionate actions of the dog. His work resulted in a book entitled What It’s Like to Be a Dog. And he described in detail the dogs’ attitude towards humans.

It has always been argued that dogs show love to those who give them food, not just pure love. However, Berns discovered that dogs naturally love anyone who cares for them, whether they are fed or not. They start wagging their tails not because they are hungry but because they are happy that their owners have returned to them safely. If that doesn’t teach you joy and compassion, maybe nothing can.


What dogs teach us about joy

Dogs are joyful lads, and they often influence their owners to be optimistic. According to the research published by the Centre for Mindful Self-Compassion, dog owners can cultivate more warmth. This research found that veterans who trained adopted dogs began to show less traumatic stress symptoms than those who didn’t.

Equally, dogs show humans what it is like when someone receives unconditional love. The warm greeting of a dog when we get home or even at the front door is overwhelming. It creates a spirit of joy and happiness in dog owners. Regardless of what happened the day before, or even a few hours ago, dogs forget it. They meet their owners with renewed eyes, happy hearts and an unconditional level of joy.

Anyone that constantly experiences this level of joy and happiness from their dog will begin to understand the importance of being joyful no matter the moment. It teaches us to be joyful and loving with our families, friends and colleagues at work without thinking about what happened earlier that day or the day before.


What dogs teach us about compassion

Cathy Taughinbaugh explained in her blog post how her dog was the only reason she could save her daughter from drug addiction. She learned from this little creature how important it is to always look out for each other. She revealed that there was a need for connections in everyday dog activities.

It teaches us that people need our time, love and attention, that there is a need to stay connected and spread love between one another. Cathy also mentioned that dogs live for today, and we can also learn from them by living with appreciation the moment we spend on our way, and always remain grateful.

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