10 Lessons On Being A Better Human I Learned From My Dog


I have the best dog in the world.

That’s what most dog people think. I happen to be right of course. Harper is my 4-year-old border collie mix that I rescued when she was a puppy. Like most dogs she has a few peculiarities that I would need Cesar Milan to fully resolve. But she’s so sweet, I bring her to my office on full days and she greets my patients with the kind of unconditional love everyone needs. In fact, she’s so adored that I often wonder if they come to see her or me. Recently I noted some things about her that, if I implemented in my own life would make me a much better person.

1. Rise with expectation – Every morning, no matter what kind of day yesterday was, no matter the weather, no matter the quality of sleep she had, Harper wakes up excited for a new day. How much better would my day be if I always expected greatness?

2. Stretch and/or do Yoga – First thing in the morning, after a little moving around, predictably Harper does a big good morning stretch and a few up and down dogs.

3. Go for a walk – I’m a big advocate of integrating quality movement into daily habits. Having a dog has helped keep me accountable, because it’s in their nature to get regular exercise.

4. Go to a park – Any park. Outside. Anywhere. Anytime. Yes, let’s go to the park and get some fresh air and exercise.

5. Play well with others – Not all dogs have got this one down, but most are so excited to see each other it’s hard for them to contain their enthusiasm. I know some people are no so easy to get along with, but I definitely have found that like-attracts-like. Give kindness and grace and receive it in return.

6. Greet each other with an unconditional tail wag – I have these friends that have been married a while, and after they haven’t seen each other, even for a short time they embrace like awe-struck teenagers. There’s something about someone else showing you affection that is contagious. Let’s spread some love.

7. Sleep well – get a full night of sleep, in the dark, no electronics, no tv…just rest.

8. Shake it off – Dogs have short memories. They also do a cool whole body shake. Sometimes to get rid of water, or other unwanted things. I could be better at shaking off the past while focusing more on the present.

9. Eat the Good Stuff – Sometimes I try to make Harper’s quality protein last longer by mixing it with a grain-free kibble. Lately she’s been eating around the kibble and picking out the good stuff. I guess I can’t blame her since we all should be eating the best we can.

10. Leave a Legacy – On Harper’s birthday, I like to say she’s had another year of improving the quality of lives of those around her. Can we say the same about ours?

Yours in Health,

Dr. Scott

3 thoughts on “10 Lessons On Being A Better Human I Learned From My Dog

  1. Pingback: How I Beat Debilitating Low Back Pain | Dr. Scott A. Mills

  2. Megan

    Those are great lessons. I especially love #6. I try to greet my husband with a big hug and a kiss whenever one of us gets home. It makes you feel loved!


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