One could say that “all strays need to be rescued” but through the study of modern canine sciences, I know this to be far from the truth.

Many, if not most “stray dogs” (whom I prefer to call “village dogs” as Raymond Coppinger Ph.D describes in his book Dogs: A New Understanding of Canine Origin, Behavior and Evolution) are actually living within their “natural” habitat as a species. I won’t go into detail regarding dog evolution, but I want to point out that an evironment that we could perceive of as a really disgusting place, namely our landfills and garbage dumps, can be like Disneyland for a dog. Dogs are natural scavengers by evolution, and therefore, most of them love our dumps. Yet, a certain dog individual may find a dump to be a terrifying and horrible place.

Reality is relative to the perspective of the individual experiencing it. A dog’s life, a cat’s life, a rat’s life, etc. can all be just as complex as the life experience of a human.

Ever since developing and deepening my relationship with the Spirits of Nature, I have come to know more about just who needs to be rescued and who doesn’t. This spiritual and very personal connection enriches and enhances the cold facts and raw data that science and academic studies alone provide. Together, they recently helped me to better understand the role that all animals, and on this occasion “village dogs”, have chosen to play in our lives.

A couple of weeks ago, just after starting to feel “more settled in” to our new home, with our three beautiful dogs finally adapting and getting a feel for their new environment, routines, diet changes, etc., a wonderfully playful young dog crawled underneath the front gate of our house and came to visit. On a whim, we called her Maggie May and she seemed to recognize us right from the beginning as if we were old friends. We would call, “Maggie, come!” and she would come running, wagging her tail happily and look soulfully up at us with the sweetest soft eyes. She even nestled her head into lovingly into our chests in a warm and intimate snuggle like our own dogs do.

“Where does she come from?”, we asked ourselves with intrigue and curiosity.

We live in a rural area in the countryside of Mexico, near the majestic volcanos and the enormous pyramid of Cholula, Puebla, and like so many places in Mexico similar to this one, we have a decent population of “village dogs”. People feed the dogs and have a relationship with them in a very “free-range” way, I would say. Dogs live outside, play with the kids all day, roam free with the chickens, go do their business, scavenge some trash here and there, meet new people, and, on some unfortunate occasions, get run over by a car.

Maggie May started visiting daily and, of course, we invited her for dinner…and lunch…and then dinner again, until one day, under the gate came Maggie May – with a puppy, her very own puppy of about 2 or 3 months old. The little guy was so shy he would run away from any direct human contact. Not from a “fear due to trauma” reaction but a “fear of the unknown” response. Of course, after a few good meals and a little of Koru’s special nurturing touch (he has a gift with with baby animals), the little guy was totally into us. At first we named him “Jacobo” but he didn’t seem to respond much to the name, so we tried “Jake” and, just as Maggie had, he answered to it beautifully.

For a whole week, I was invaded by confusing feelings of love towards Jake and Maggie mixed with worry and questions about what we should do about them. They are “free ranging village dogs” after all! Was it fair to make them try to adapt to a house life? Would they be safe outside? What were the pros and cons involved? For them AND for us…Just what was the best option?

On Friday evening, the doorbell rang

A 10-year-old kid and his mother were there, asking for their dog back. It turns out Maggie May had an owner and a name: Amarilla, presumably because of her yellowy-brown coat. We let “Amarilla” go back to her family but they said we could keep the puppy. So, it was just baby Jake with us now… and our three beloved dogs.

Bumsi, our 4-year-old dog, behaves more like a cat and is elegant and unique. She was already starting to get grumpy about a new puppy; Leo has never liked puppies or adolescent dogs, especially males. He is an 8-year-old Belgian Shephard – much too serious for puppy play.

I was all worried about not having enough time for the puppy, traveling into the future through the lens of my anxiety to see if keeping Jake as an official family member was the wisest choice or not; Koru was feeling my anxiety and also thinking about the implications of a new puppy in our life, but was also totally in love with the furry little angel.

And finally, Lua, our 1-year-old Belgian Shephard (whom we adopted last year at 2 months old and who proved to be the most intense and energetic puppy I’ve encountered in a long while, complete with lots of collateral damage to the house during her first year) was the happiest dog on earth. She reminded me of a five-year-old kid that wants nothing more in life than a puppy, and although you just know she won’t particularly take care of him, you can see her eyes glisten at the slightest glimpse of the little creature and you are helpless to say no. There she was, Lua, all big and rough, playing the most delicate puppy games with little Jake. What to do?…

The days went by and my anxiety continued.

We are planning to have kids in the not-too-distant future and I was already projecting myself there, trying to see all possible scenarios with little Jake: would he be good to the kids?… how would it be to handle trips with the four dogs?… would we need a bigger truck… and what about the food?… My head  was just spinning in every direction with tons of absurdly detailed questions. Then Koru told me, “You need to talk to Jake. Connect with him and ask him what his deal is. Does he want to be part of this family? Does he need to go back to that kid?”.

I tend to get nervous about intuitive communication with our own animals

I still get trapped in thinking I am too close and too biased to let in real psychic information from my closest allies, but I let the idea sink in.

A day later I was meditating before sleep and Jake appeared in my inner vision. He went straight to the core of the matter and said to me “Stop being afraid of life. Just stop. What are you so scared about?” and I replied, “About all that can go wrong and tons of ‘what-if’s’”, and he answered back, “That’s life, of course things will go wrong, but it will work out. If you are afraid of life you will actually miss all the fun and even life itself.” What a wise and simple message.

I reflected on a learning I had received more than a year ago about how being afraid of losing something could actually turn into a self-fulfilled prophecy – because by being afraid to lose it you would push it away and never even experience it in the first place.

I felt like a burden had been lifted and I was instantly revitalized. “Koru, Koru! Jake’s staying! It´ll turn out just as it needs to turn out”, I said smiling brightly. Koru replied “So, you talked to him? Tell me everything! By the way I just let him go out for a stroll with Maggie who was just passing by.”

I told Koru about Jake’s message and, ironically, Jake didn’t come home for dinner that night. One, two, three days went by and Jake still hadn’t come back. Not a visit, not a bark, not even a single wine at the gate. I wasn’t sad but instead understood that his message had been delivered.

I tuned in with my guides shortly after and Vinya, one of my guides that is from Vega, told me the following:

“He is a strong little happy fellow just as his mom. They wanted to deliver various messages and short lessons for you:

First and foremost, remember that animals do not need to be rescued, the ones who need to be rescued are humans. Every human that rescues an animal is because the animal decided it that way; to rescue the human. When humans are receptive, open, listen, and develop a loving bond with the animal, then the lessons are punctual, direct, precise, and beautiful. When humans are closed-up and deaf, the lessons are painful, hard, and long.

All the suffering that the animal goes through, is a reflection of the suffering and pain of the human that is with him/her, they share the burden, they share the load, willing to endure until they fulfill their mission. Accompanying us on the journey until we are ready to take one more step. The butcher that kills the cow brutally suffers what the cow is suffering. We must understand that we are all One.

Jake and Maggie wanted to welcome you, thank you, and leave. Jake wanted to tell you “Stop being afraid of life”. Please remember this every minute of every day that you feel overwhelmed or stressed or worried. Trust that everything will turn out beautifully. The less resistance you have, the less worry, the less stress, the easier everything will happen and evolve.

Jake is just fine, he is wandering. Maggie and he are joy and love givers. There are a lot of places that need love, they know where to go.”

This story reminds me of a quote from the song by John Lennon “Beautiful boy” that says: “Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans.” I want to invite you to listen to Jake’s message and see where it resonates within you. What are you afraid of? What is it that you would like to do but fear stops you from doing it?

Breath. Let go and let love in.

Let’s all follow our hearts and stay true to our dreams… every day a little more, a little more…

P.s. An hour before writing this, Jake and Maggie both stopped by as if to say, “ See, when you trust and let go, everything works out just fine”…and for dinner, of course.

Thank you for reading!