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Sample Communication Reports

Sample Report #1

Context: Becky was seriously ill and at one stage became too weak to walk Pickle, so asked her boyfriend to look after her for a few weeks until she felt stronger. Becky’s boyfriend, Steve, said she did not seem happy at his house, even though she had been there many times before, so I had a word with Pickle.

Person: Becky

Animal: Pickle (small terrier)


Me. Hi little Pickle. Do you want to talk to me?

Pickle. I’m not little... But okay. I can talk.

Me. How are you doing?

Pickle. I miss my mommy, and it's my home too.

Me. I know it is, baby. But your mommy's not feeling well.

Pickle. I know, but how can I look after her if I'm sent away?

Me. You're not being sent away Sweetheart. Your mommy doesn't feel well so she can't walk you so much. That's all. It's only for a little while, a short time. Anyway, you’re with Steven, and he loves you.

Pickle. Yeah but his house smells funny. And it's not my home.

Me. I know baby, it's just for a short time. The best way of you looking after your mommy right now is to be flexible about things. To go with the flow.

Pickle. And when will I flow back home?

Me. You can flow back home as soon as things are sorted out with your mommy.

Pickle. Hmmph… Well, okay I guess. Do I have a choice?

Me. You have lots of choices. You can choose to feel okay about your vacation.

Pickle. Vacation? Is it a vacation?

Me. Yes, it's like a vacation. It's sometimes good to have time away. Especially when things are in a time of change. Your mom sent you on vacation with Steve because she loves you and she wants what's best for you.

Pickle. What's best for me is to be at home with her.

Me. I know, Sweetheart. But she'll be worried about not walking enough. And she'll try to do her best and she's not feeling so good at the moment. So that'll cause her to be worried about things. She needs to rest at the moment.

Pickle. How long am I on vacation?

Me. Well, I don't know, but I'll tell you this, your mommy loves you so much, that as soon as she can get you back home, she will. I promise you that.

Pickle. When is as soon as?

Me. It's when it's the right time. You don't have to know when you can go back home. You can just relax, and look forward to when.

Pickle. Okay... I guess.

Me. Can you be strong and brave, and a good girl about this?

Pickle. I am strong and brave, and I am a good girl, (even if she does call me a monkey).

Me. I know you are, Sweetheart. Your mommy loves you so much that she doesn't want you to feel bad about this temporary situation.

Pickle. So nothing's going to change while I'm in exile, right?

Me. You're not in exile, Sweetheart, you're on vacation.

Pickle. Doesn't feel like a vacation without her... I miss her.

Me. I know, Sweetheart. But luckily you're brave and strong so you know that

everything is going to be fine.

Pickle. Okay.. I guess I do. I miss her smell too! This place smells funny.

Me. I know, Sweetheart. Everywhere smells funny when we miss our home smells. How about if I ask for a sweater for you?

Pickle. Okay, that would be better. Can I sleep on it?

Me. Yes I'm sure that's okay.

Pickle. Okay then. I'm going to be brave because that's the best thing.

Me. That is the best thing, Sweetheart.

Pickle. (But I'm not happy about this). She still loves me though, right?

Me. Yes of course! That's why you're on vacation because she loves you so much.

Pickle.. Mmmm. (wiggly-body-wag).

Me. I know sweetheart, it feels so good to be loved, doesn't it?

Pickle. Yes it does.

Me. So are you okay now? You're going to be a brave girl for Mommy? And not be worried? And be a flexible girl?

Pickle. I am a flexible girl!

Me. Glad to hear that! Do you have any questions?

Pickle. No... Only when can I go home? But, I know, you don't know.

Me. I'm sure it will be as soon as possible. She misses you too, you know.

Pickle. Does she? I know she does. I feel that, (seems so unnecessary though).

Me. We talked about that, remember? Mommy's not feeling so well.

Pickle. But I’m no trouble!

Me. I know you're not, Sweetheart. But for the sake of mommy not worrying about you, or not trying to do the best for you by walking, you can understand that, right?

Pickle. I suppose so…

Me. It won't be long, Angel.

Pickle. Okay. Don't forget about the sweater. A smelly one, please.

Me. Okay, thanks for talking, Sweetheart.

Pickle. You're welcome.

Me. Go in love, Sweetheart.

Pickle. I will.

Human Feedback:

Becky said: “Pickle has always been a rather stubborn kind of dog – unwilling to fawn or obey too many commands, and scornful of my position as Pack Leader! Her absolute disregard for my wellbeing here made me roar with laughter. It feels totally in character.

She went to my boyfriend’s house and he has two cats with very smelly litter trays so I didn’t tell him what she said about his house smelling funny!

After Steve took one of my old sweaters over to his house, he reported that Pickle DID seem a lot happier. She stayed with him for about a month and then came home.

I love so much about this communication. It feels just like Pickle talking to me. Her personality is spot on. I know she keeps her love a secret, and I can hear her saying all this in her stubborn little way.

I also love the way Phee is so gentle with her – understanding her confusion and deftly handling questions like ‘WHEN can I go home?’ with words that allow Pickle to feel secure and loved without making any promises that might have been broken. It is beautiful to see.

Phee has communicated with Pickle a few times. She is not a dog who loves cuddles or is particularly willing to please anyone but herself, but these insights have brought me so much closer to her, as well as helping both of us through some difficult times.

And I DO call her Monkey!

Sample Report #2

Context: Toby was an 8 year-old Doberman suffering with a twisted gut. He was going in for an emergency operation the following day, but his person had a schedule to be out of town, that couldn’t be postponed. The purpose of the communication was to explain the situation and reassure Toby that everything was going to be OK.

Me: Hi Toby, how are you doing?
T: My tummy hurts.

Me: I know baby. You’re going to have an operation.

T: Will that make me feel better?

Me: Yes, baby. You’ll feel much better.

T: OK I don’t mind then.

Me: And your mum and dad are going away for a few days.

T: Are they coming back?

Me: Yes, of course they are.

T: Well, I heard stories…

Me: No, they’re coming back, you don’t need to worry. And by the time they’re back, you’ll be feeling much better.

T: OK I’m looking forward to that then.

Me: So don’t worry, you’ll be OK. You’ll see them again soon.

T: When soon?

Me: I’ll tell her to tell you, OK?

T: Yeah, tell her that. Tell her I can hear her. So thinking of me clearly is enough.

Me: OK I’ll tell her that too. You’re going to feel OK, don’t think about it. When youwake up after the operation, you’re going to feel much better. Maybe a little bit painful at first, but be a brave boy, and take it easy, and you’ll be OK.

T: OK I will.

Me: You have to look after yourself, baby. Don't do crazy stuff.

T: OK, I won’t. I know I say that, and then I know I will. At that moment, it’s irresistible fun!

Ne: OK baby. Try to resist some of the fun out there. There’s plenty of kinds of fun. You can find another fun. You don’t want to make your mummy worry do you?

T: No, not so much… (she likes to worry)

Me: I don’t think she does…

T: Yeah she does. She’s good at it too.

Me: Very funny, Toby.

T: I’m feeling so sleepy. Tell her I love her.

Me: OK Have a nice sleep, baby.

Human Feedback:

Toby’s person said: “He came through the operation well and the vet said he was a good boy. Now to just remind him not to jump around!  It’s nice to know that he can hear me, I’ve always said he could read my mind!”

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