International Dog Day: Another Way to Celebrate Love

International Dog Day: Another Way to Celebrate Love

By Jimena Suarez Ibarrola

The bond that exists with our companion animals (for this entry we will be referring specifically to dogs) feels like a haven that protects us from the difficulties and fatigue of daily life. So often do we regard dogs as subordinate to humans and our needs, but at every turn, there is an opportunity to learn from their individuality. Any relationship really is deeper and more meaningful when it is not born out of domination, and as many have mentioned in the past, animals enrich a part of our soul that is inherently free from the possibility of being captivated by human interactions. In other words, there is a part of our soul that is meant to be discovered through the bond held with a non-human animal.

Society has so often understood dogs as another product, one that must be chosen carefully through how its cover looks. Observing this day, International Dog Day, means to understand that we must rethink our perception of their worth based on love and commitment. If we take a closer look at a dog’s behavior towards a family member, a dog’s main spiritual objective and motivation is to love and be loved thereby expressing infinite innocence.

A dog’s contribution to human beings was first defined by our ancestors, and now it is time to deconstruct the power dynamics that have been pervasive in our practices and understand their worth through their capacity to feel love. In Nahuatl and Mayan thought, as in that of many other peoples of the world, the dog has been the guide of the spirits of the dead to the underworld. The dog has long been venerated as the inseparable companion of mankind not only in life, but also in sickness and death. Even ancient cultures believed in the astral bond that exists between a person and a dog, provided we allow for this bond to flourish on kindness.

Hopefully, soon enough, mankind will rebuild the tarnishing view built in relation with a dog’s life and it's worth. To be receptors of their innocence and love can change the way we view the world for the better, planting seeds for peace and kindness even among humans. If we are patient enough to learn their language, and understand them as individuals, we will be bound by the soul with the dog we allow to become part of our family.

In observance to this day, SENTIENT wants to share one of the most beautiful quotes by an admired author, so that we remember to adopt a dog, that eventually becomes a family member, rather than shop for a dog as we would for a product:

“The animals of the world exist for their own reasons. They were not made for humans any more than black people were made for white, or women created for men.”
― Alice Walker