Written by Willow Hopkins and Lessy, a Staffordshire Terrier Cross
I wanted to treat my senior dog that turns 13 in October to a Spiritual Dog Retreat, as it was also the year that my puppy that I lost in an accident would have turned 10 and it just felt right. I wasn’t particularly looking for any advice and guidance per say, I just wanted to treat myself and my Lessy-Girl to a much deserved break from the boys, (Oscar my younger lad and my hubby).
I wasn’t looking for anything in particular just a “Spiritual Dog Retreat”, so that is what I tapped into my search engine and there it was. It was the perfect setting, the message on the website, the idyllic pictures and the way Caroline described her credo, when it came to energy work with dogs, made it sound too good to be true. I thought that the retreat would provide a break from reality for me and my girl, but that I wouldn’t learn very much. I did worry that Lessy, who often just does as she pleases, would bark at all the other dogs and cause mayhem, disrupting the wonderful sounding status quo described so beautifully on the website.
So I arrive and well, what a stunning place it is, what a warm welcome and how accommodating, how trusting of our familiars, our much loved dogs. I have never felt so comfortable so quickly with such an array of breeds and new owners to meet. Caroline made me and Lessy, feel as though we totally belonged in the space she had created for us; it had a palpable feeling of magic in the air, of love, of understanding, and acceptance of the true essence of life – nurture and nature.
I often feel I struggle to feel at home and to fit in but here I was accepted instantly, it so refreshing and such a relief. Not only did I enjoy myself, I learnt something new every day and for someone who researches lots, this was a huge joy to be growing, learning, connecting, understanding Lessy more. I felt like I was claiming back her power as a sentient being of the planet, who deserves to have all the nutrients, connection, love, healing, play, recognition that I always believed all animal’s deserve.
The food provided by Elaine was delicious! I started my days complaining that I was not a fan of Coconut, a huge staple in Vegan food; however since this course I am a total Coconut-convert, consuming it daily, rubbing the oil on my skin and hair, and even occasionally cleaning my teeth with it. I hear it’s hitting the worldwide market hugely, due to its health benefits. I am such a fan of what is really good for us so it was a huge bonus to learn more of how I can be healthier. Since the retreat I am being 80 % Vegan and decided to join a Gym, so there have been many benefits to attending Caroline’s fantastic retreat.
I met lovely like-minded people on the retreat and we had a lovely rapport and all got on well and spent time together during our free time walking our dogs in the stunning Welsh countryside. I was in my element with Lessy, paddling in the slate filled rivers, with her new best dog friend River.
To be totally honest, I thought the talks would be like teaching me to suck eggs, yet I found that Caroline is cutting edge when it comes to Canine advice and guidance. She is just so connected to this cause, so passionate, so very real, so very aligned with her beliefs of what our pets really need from us, that I would recommend anyone and everyone with a Dog to attend her retreat. It is indeed transformational and will be something that stays with you and your Canine Companions for life. You will want to share your findings with fellow animal lovers, you too will become passionate about our Canines needs and together we can make the desperate changes to our much loved pets diets, lifestyles, wants, needs and wild whims and fancies.
I came away from the retreat feeling, refreshed, renewed, inspired, fired up to make some radical changes in my life and in Lessy & Oscar’s and I did. I joined the online group and I have learnt even more since. This has kept up my momenta with it all, as it is new and radical to the world we have previously known, it makes the truth about Canine diets highly confusing and we are all beginning to wake up to the facts and we are, I believe, hungry to know more about how we can all be responsible, for not only our health, but also our much loved pets.