The Power of Unconditional Love – The Wiggle

Happy New Year!!! You made it through another year. What do you think 2013 is going to bring?? Prosperity, good health, weight loss, etc–the usual desires and wishes. How about simply: love? Love—so simple, but easily overlooked.

I’m here to tell you that your pets can help with your health and fitness with their unconditional love! This is a subject very near and dear to my heart. People tend to focus so much on New Years’ Resolutions and goal planning that they get stressed about their goals and fall off the wagon. I’m here to help you change that a bit. Take a step back. Sit up straight (yeah yeah back to the good posture!) Shoulders back—stop hunching over that computer screen. Deep breath. Clear your mind. One more breath—in your nose, out your mouth. Even if you aren’t an animal lover, this article can be applied to you; perhaps with your kids? Or family? Just NOT food……

I used to be a bit of a stress freak. I’ve gotten much better. In fact, Reshape with Ape has helped me to grow substantially and this is the best I’ve felt. Yay for turning 30!! Breathe a little more, love a little more. Values that I live for each day. One of my biggest stress relievers was my beloved dog, Clubber Lang. I was told on two different occasions (by two different health care professionals) something along the lines of “April, think what Clubber would do? How would he react in a situation where something unplanned occurred?” Well, basically Clubber’s dopey butt would look around, wiggle, and roll with it. The interpretation basically is: live like a dog, think like a dog, love like a dog. Unconditional love.

Think about that. Helps you breathe a little easier right? A little more freely?

Wiggle wiggle, shake shake, slurp slurp, ruff ruff.

I’m a big fan of dogs. All animals in general, but dogs are really, truly my favorite. I lost my beloved best friend in October (you saw me snuggled up in my jammies with my best boy). Clubber was super special. Truly a gem. When my great grandma was alive, we used to take him to the assisted living facility to visit her. He loved it, and everyone there looked forward to his visits. He lit up the room with his wiggle, even if he tried to steal a stuffed animal from their little carts. Bottom line: Clubber made them smile. He instilled a happiness with his wiggle.

Dogs make people smile, plain and simple. You’re smiling right now thinking of your dog, aren’t you? Animals make us smile. It’s a proven fact.

Today, I have a new love in my life. One that I didn’t plan, nor did I feel like I was ready to open my heart to. Initially, I was really overwhelmed with Orbit’s arrival. Especially because he loved my husband more than me. I have even slipped a number of times and called him Clubber—talk about a punch to the gut. Orbit has helped me to breathe a little lighter and look forward to the wiggle when I get home again. In just those couple of months after Clubber’s departure from my life, I realized that although it was nice not to have to rush home, my home was really empty and there was a place in my heart that needed to be filled.

Enter Baltimore Bully Crew.

When Clubber passed away, my husband didn’t want another dog right away. However, one night even though we weren’t “looking for a dog” the conversation went like this:

Kevin: “Hey Ape-Have you heard of the Baltimore Bully Crew?”
Me: “Yeah”
Kevin: “Are you friends with them on Facebook? Did you see this picture?”
[Shows me the picture of ORBIT…..]

We both fell in love. The rest is our happily ever after.

Honestly, Baltimore Bully Crew has been amazing. I truly love the family that we have been introduced to, because they have provided us with an arsenal of resources, including Pet-U-Cation Pack Walks and a number of people to help us along the way. For that, I deeply give a heart felt thanks.

A dog can work miracles. Think about the long, hard day at work. You drive home, annoyed by traffic, and the millions of phone calls from people who just wouldn’t “get it.” You unlock the door and there awaits your smile. Everything goes to the back of your mind, and all you can think of is this love in front of you eager to greet you and only looking for reciprocal love.

In December, after the tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary School, the only tears of happiness shed for such a horrific tragedy were the people who reached out to help the victims, as well as the dogs who traveled far and wide to help them too. Pets on Wheels’ therapy dogs were loaded onto a bus and transported to the small town in Connecticut to help people cope with their loss, the tragedy, and the unnerving nightmares that may continue to plague the children and their families. I still tear up when I think of this. Dogs going to help these families, the children, anyone who was hurting as a result of a substantial tragedy.

Have you hugged your (a) dog today? If you need to borrow one, plenty of rescues are in need of that too! In fact, you can attend a Pet-U-Cation Pack Walk with a dog available for adoption. Think about the love.

Moving on to the physical aspects of this power of the wiggle! Remember, we aren’t considering those New Years’ Resolutions right now. Breathe. 2013 can simply start with walking your dog—one of the best exercises to do. Little steps—or big ones depending on paw sizes…

After working all day, I often hear from clients that they can’t fathom the idea of working out. They are tired, exhausted, and often mentally drained. Enter little Tippy the Chihuahua or even Bob Barker the giant Great Dane—dogs need to be exercised. They don’t understand that you’re tired because they are so excited you’re home and ready to PARTY! Savannah Huff, Owner/Behavior Consultant, Pet-U-Cation Training & Rehabilitation Services, says “Adding more exercise to your dog’s life is one of the most commonly suggested bits of advice that we end up giving our private clients. Exercise is extremely important for not only your dog’s physical, but their mental health as well. It can increase trainability decrease the occurrence of problem behaviors, and give your dog a ‘clear head’ to think with. This makes for better decision making, increased impulse control, and a generally calmer and better behaved dog — not to mention a healthier heart and a longer lifespan.” So, stop ignoring your dog’s plea and get up and GO! GO! Go and smell the fresh air—something you don’t get huddled in your office all day!

You’re moving now aren’t you? Smile, because you just did that. Little steps. All things to help you breathe easier.

You’ve just refined your mental status a little. You can breathe a little easier because your exercise contributes directly to a healthy heart. You are exploring the physical aspect while bonding with your pupperoo and helping him/her to behave a little better too.


  1. Azia Thomas says

    I can relate to your story. If you want a good read go to Barnes and Noble or Amazon website and get the book Hank: A Dog’s View of the World. It is touching and funny at the same time. Thanks for your article. It is nice to read something that is uplifting.

  2. says

    Thanks Monster!

    Azia: I’ll check out that book. Thanks!!! My favorite dog book is “Merle’s Door.” Ted is amazing and since I went to Yellowstone, I can relate to it more. 😉 He’s coming out w/ a new book too in Feb for his new dog Puuka. :) LOVE!!