Practicing the Power and Skills of Conscious Discipline® Puppy Style!

I’ve grown up with dogs all of my life!  I have fond memories of dressing our Boston Terrier, Ginger, in tutus and painting her toe nails red.  And then there was Scooter who had so much energy and could make me laugh and smile.  

Jessica with Ginger in Greenville, KY.
Jessica with Ginger in Greenville, KY.

Yes, I have a love affair for terriers!  They have such an attitude and a flair for independence.  Amos Moses, a Wire Haired Fox Terrier, was my first child.  Sorry Jay!  Everyone on the Naval Base at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, knew Amos Moses because he would regularly visit other neighborhoods and would be returned home safely on the bus.

Jay's first birthday with Amos Moses helping!
Jay’s first birthday with Amos Moses helping!

And then the real love affair started with Scottish Terriers!  

Jesse with Alex on the left and Jezebel on the right.
Jesse with Alex on the left and Jezebel on the right.
Gus and Maddie meeting the bunnies!
Gus and Maddie meeting the bunnies!

This week Bailey came into our home!  She’s 2 months old and full of that Scottie attitude and Scottie energy.  Did I mention that she loves my feet, toes, fingers and arms?  Read on!

So what does a puppy and Conscious Discipline® have in common?  

Well, I’m coaching 8 schools at the moment that are implementing Conscious Discipline into their centers.  The teachers often make comments that it is so hard to change their language with children.  Yes indeed it is hard to change how we’ve been talking.  It’s like learning a new language and it takes practice, practice, practice.  And in walks a cute Scottish Terrier helping me to hone the powers and skills of Conscious Discipline.  

So here’s hoping that Bailey can help all of us learn the language of safety and helpfulness.  Here’s to Bailey helping us to find our Big Voice.  

Language lesson for this week!  

The Power of Attention:  What you focus on you get more of! 

The Power of Love:  Seeing the best in others.   

Bailey loves my feet, toes, fingers and arms.  What I mean by that is that she bites them.  It’s fun for her, painful for me!  Puppy teeth are incredibly sharp.  OUCH!  I can allow her to make me angry OR I can “pivot,” take a deep breath and focus on what I want it to look like.  “You’re wanting my attention, so you nipped my feet. Ouch, it hurts when you nipp!  You can bark like this for my attention.”  

Pivoting changes how I feel inside so that I can bring a more positive state into this experience where learning can take place for both of us.  

I know this sounds weird using Conscious Discipline with a dog but Bailey gives me the opportunity to practice, practice, practice the powers and skills of Conscious Discipline.  It takes time to re-wire my brain.  It takes time to re-tool my tool box and I’ll jump at the chance to practice.  

“Let’s go Bailey,” says this Southern girl with an assertive voice.  

Welcome Bailey!
Welcome Bailey!
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