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17.   EVENTS
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Dear TTouch Friends,

Well, the year started with a Bang – yes those dreaded Fireworks for many pet owners. I personally took a very scared but sweet Staffie to the Randburg SPCA at 1 a.m. in the morning. I had been at a gathering when the dog showed up, walked inside and did NOT want to leave. So I started my year TTouching a strange dog, which seemed to relax with lots of ear work and Abalone Circles on the Body.  When we train our Practitioners, one of the main things we discuss is the need to keep the Practitioner safe with dogs they don’t know and I had an interesting experience with this. For details see TTouchTips

As the people where I was had cats and were leaving on Holiday the next morning, I volunteered to take the dog to an all night Vet. Unfortunately when I arrived I was told that they weren’t accepting any strays. While I can understand the policy in that they might indeed be inundated and lack space, I would like to think that there was some flexibility when a single woman arrives at 1 a.m. in the morning. The lack of concern for my safety in sending me somewhere else, never mind the dogs did not impress me at 1 a.m. New Year’s Eve! If any of you have information on this type of policy at your Vets, I would really like to know what it is.

Having said that, the dog stayed for almost 2 weeks before being found by its Owner. It had indeed been left outside and must have run at the first sound of a bang. If I can recommend anything to dog owners, PLEASE KEEP YOUR DOGS INSIDE when you know there is going to be Fireworks or Thunderstorms.

The other BANG from the start of the New Year is the huge interest in the TTouch work. While we know that many people are starting to learn about and appreciate the usefulness of this work, we have been inundated with requests for workshops. Needless to say, this is very exciting and shows me that we’re on the right track.  Please let me say here, that if for some reason your mail hasn’t been answered, please do resend it as some got lost in the system over the Holidays and some simply weren’t delivered! I have no idea why. The Internet is a mystery that I love and do not understand. So please have patience if you have not heard from us. I give you full permission to complain and nag if you have unanswered questions!

Many of you were kind enough to send us pictures of your pets for our new website. IT’S NOW UP AND RUNNING! www.ttouch.co.za - Not yet finished however, so where you find gaps, again please have patience as we have to work one page at a time. We’ve actually launched it early as we were doing so much work on it, we didn’t have time to update the old one and we at least wanted all updated information such as workshops, there for our readers.

When you go onto the home page, you’ll see a large picture of an animal, these are your pictures! We have about 30 loaded and each time you log on or refresh, you’ll get a different animal and a different quote. We will be adding more as we go on, but these were randomly chosen by our Webmaster as a start. We also hope with time to have a picture album of your pet’s best pictures, but again – not quite yet.

A very Happy New Year to Everyone. I hope that 2007 brings you much joy and learning experiences with your 4 leggeds, as they are indeed our Teachers!

Keeping in Touch,


Certified Practitioner, Level 3 for Companion Animals

Author unknown

Why own a dog? There's a danger you know,
You can't own just one, for the craving will grow.
There's no doubt they're addictive, wherein lies the danger.
While living with lots, you'll grow poorer and stranger.

Well, 2007 is almost upon us and we have great News: We have set the dates of the Second Intro for Companion Animals. It will be April 27- May 2 this means you have to take minimal days off work.
April 27 – Holiday
April 28-29 – Weekend
April 30 – Monday
May 1 – Holiday
May 2 – Wednesday

So max Holiday you need is 2 Days! We are hoping that this will help those of you who have problems getting off work!

The training runs over 3 years, with 2-week long sessions per year. The first Introductory Session will take place March 17-22, 2007. You do NOT need to have any previous experience to join this training. However, you might like to join a workshop before then if you are keen to start. Having a basic knowledge can help you retain more of the Intro training, but again this is not necessary for you to be part of the TTACT III class. If you are interested in a workshop, please go to our website at www.ttouch.co.za
and look on the Workshop page for details.

After the Introductory Session and between sessions, students are encouraged to assist at workshops for further experience and do case studies. The program comprises only 2 sessions a year in order to help students with their finances and the need to get time off work. The workshops are scheduled to include a weekend in order to make it as convenient as possible.

The Program is a comprehensive training of hands on work with Companion Animals such as dogs, cats, rabbits, birds, etc. The training consists of 2 sessions a year lasting between 5 & 7 days, for 3 years.

We endeavour to help the student to be proficient and confident in the TTouch work. To this end we have a program that we believe gives a steady hands on experience for the best results. That includes such things as:

  • After session 2, the TTouch student is required to do 5 case studies between each session, 15 in total. This is to ensure that the student is doing and experiencing the work as well as getting feedback on what they are doing.
  • After session 2, each student receives a Mentor who is available to help him with these case studies and any question he might have about how to handle a particular situation.
  • At session 2, we begin to take students to a Shelter to work on both cats and dogs. This is to give you an opportunity to experience as many different animals as possible. It also allows us to give back something to the animal community. (Please note that if anyone has an objection to going into the shelter, and we realize that it is hard for some, there is no obligation. There is always an alternative to work with the kennel or your own animals instead.)
  • At session 3, we start to introduce Client Days. This is a morning where we set up Clients and their dogs for you to help in a safe and supported environment.
  • In general, the course is very much a hands on training giving you a great variety of experience with as many animals as possible so that at the end of 6 modules you feel confident to handle the clients and cases that come your way.
  • TTACT students are encouraged to assist at workshops given by fully Certified Practitioners. This is a great learning experience and invaluable to the learning process.
  • The TTouch office and Guild is always here to answer any questions or concerns you might have. Please don’t hesitate to call us if you have any needs!
  • Our Instructors all come from overseas and are the best in the world. One of the beauties of this program is that the same people teach it worldwide and so the information doesn’t get filtered down through many hands. The Instructors include Linda Tellington Jones (creator of TTouch), Robyn Hood (Linda’s sister and brilliant teacher), Edie Jane Eaton (also a Feldenkrais Practitioner) & Debby Potts (teacher par excellence).
  • This program is about helping you communicate with animals, giving people an alternative method of working with both animals and people, our human relationship with the animal world and giving you the tools to do all of these things. The program is dynamic, creative and yet very practical so that the work is clear and easy to understand.

At the end of 2 years, if you have done your case studies, you will acquire the Status of Practitioner–In–Training and are then able to charge for one-on-one consultations with clients.

The cost of the 6-day Introductory course will be  R3900 + VAT.
If you are interested in knowing more, please contact Eugenie on 011 884-3156 or email eugenie@ttouch.co.za

One dog is no trouble, and two are so funny.
The third one is easy, the fourth one's a honey.
The fifth one delightful, the sixth one's a breeze,
You find you can live with a houseful with ease.

TTouch Classes – Saturday Afternoons Starts January 27th
Friday Evenings Starts January 26th

Here is a great way to get started with TTouch or to come refresh your skills!

Perfect for dogs who are:

  • Fearful of the Summer Thunderstorms!
  • Scared of Fireworks
  • Hyper & Excitable
  • Shy or Fearful
  • Old, arthritic or have HD
  • Jumping up or Leash Pulling
  • Aggressive or Bullies
  • Nervous
  • Fearful of Strangers, men, etc.
  • Or just deepen you bond with your dog and do something he will love!!!


  • How do TTouch bodywork, which includes a variety of TTouches
  • How to read your Dog’s body Language
  • How to Use a Body Wrap, a wonderful tool for many things including fear of Thunder and Fireworks
  • To Find the Perfect Equipment for your Pet and How to use it: Sometimes, changing a Harness or Head Collar can make a huge difference to your ability to not only control your dog, but in helping you communicate what it is you want him to do!
  • To Do Groundwork, for helping dogs balance, learn, improve gait, gain confidence and much more!
  • How to increase the bond with your pet through mindful interactions
  • How to Problem Solve your Personal Situations
  • How to Communicate on many Levels
  • How you are affecting your Dog’s Life, Confidence and Behaviour

DATE:            Saturday afternoons: Jan. 27, Feb. 3, 10, 17, 24 & March 3
                       Friday Evenings: Jan. 26, Feb. 2, 9, 16, 23 & March 2

TIME:             2:00 – 5:00 p.m. Saturdays
                       5:00 – 8 p.m. Fridays

COST:            R550

VENUE:          Sandown, Johannesburg

CONTACT:    Eugenie on 011-884-3156 or email eugenie@ttouch.co.za

The TTouch class is a great way to learn & absorb TTouch at it’s best. Over a 6-week period, you have the opportunity to go home, practice and then come back for more! SEE YOUR DOG MAKE CHANGES IS A FEW WEEKS!


For more information, please contact Niki 082 451 0433 niki.elliott@wol.co.za

So how 'bout another? Would you really dare?
They're really quite easy but oh, Lord the hair!
With dogs on the sofa and dogs on the bed,
And crates in the kitchen, it's no bother you've said.

Rescuing a Staffie Running from Fireworks on New Year’s Eve
by Eugenie Chopin

Well, the year started with a Bang – yes those dreaded Fireworks for many pet owners. I personally took a very scared but sweet Staffie to the Randburg SPCA at 1 a.m. in the morning. I had been at a gathering when the dog showed up, walked inside and did NOT want to leave. So I started my year TTouching a strange dog, which seemed to relax with lots of ear work and Abalone Circles on the Body.  When we train our Practitioners, one of the main things we discuss is the need to keep the Practitioner safe with dogs they don’t know this Staffie was a good example.

Because all dogs are potentially biters, we learn to look for the signs that the dog might be ready to have a nip. It’s not necessarily the big assertive dogs that do this; it is often the nervous scared dogs – the ones lacking in confidence. If a dog is very scared, the sympathetic nervous system kicks in and the dogs literally goes into what we call Fight, Flight or Freeze mode. At this time, the dog isn’t thinking or making rational decisions; it is simply reacting to a situation. The pulse rate will go up, cognitive thinking goes out of the window and in many cases; the dog can’t eat because the body has gotten ready for fighting or fleeing. Of course there are different levels of this, but that’s some basics.

Therefore when faced with a Strange dog that goes into a strange house and hides behind a chair, I am certainly going to approach that dog with care. I started by approaching gently, slowly and from the side (never approach a strange dog head on – they might find it confrontational). Also talking gently and calmly helped the dog know I wasn’t going to hurt it. The Staffie stayed still while I started with a few strokes and some ear work, being careful not to lean over her, but simply reaching out.  She was a bit in a freeze mode so I wasn’t sure if she was really tolerating me or just stuck. However, I persisted with the bodywork and she stopped trembling (which she had been doing) and seemed more relaxed. Only then did we get some biltong and she if she would eat (I’m convinced she would not have earlier, during the trembling stage). She did take the food and I tried to get her to move a bit by laying the biltong out just out of her reach. I helped her by lifting gently her tummy, as she didn’t really want to get up! I managed to get her halfway across the room, but she balked when we got nearer the door. She definitely did not want to go out into the Fiery Night!

By this time we had decided we needed to take her somewhere she’d be safe for the night. She had already growled at the resident dog and the cats were getting curious and starting to get too close. She seemed a sweet dog, but as you may know, if a Staffie goes for another animal, it is sometimes hard to get them to let go, so I didn’t want to take any chances.

AT this time, I asked if there was a man around who would pick up the dog and carry her out to the car. What can I say? No volunteers! So eventually I picked up the dog myself and carried her to the car. I later heard that everyone thought I was being very brave! The truth is that by this time, I had assessed the dogs body language, etc. and was about 98% sure she was OK being handled. (Always a small risk factor for a dog you don’t know).

Are you asking what were the signs? Let’s go through them as I saw it that evening:

  • No unnatural dilatation of the pupils (considering it was night)
  • No whale eye – whites of the eye showing
  • A soft face – no extra tension around the mouth area
  • I had done quite a bit of TTouch on her by this time so had touched her body all over
  • I had lifted her hindquarters in order to help her get moving by herself.
  • She had actually moved a few Meters on her own, so wasn’t in total freeze.
  • She had taken and eaten Biltong, so was not totally on Fight or Flight mode.
  • Listened to my Instincts that she was Fine to handle.

And she was absolutely fine! I put her in my car and took her to the Randburg SPCA, where they had someone on duty just to accept animals 24/7 during this period. Well done to the SPCAs for this service!

She is now home with her family, which I understand includes 7 dogs! I hope she’s happy and with Owners who will be more diligent next time!

Eugenie Chopin is a TTouch Practitioner for Companion Animals, Level 3

They're really no trouble, their manners are great.
What's just one more dog and just one more crate?
The sofa is hairy, the windows are crusty,
The floor is all footprints, the furniture dusty.

The limited hold is scientific terminology—laboratory slang, really—for a good way to use the marker and reinforcer to speed up response to a cue. We’re all used to sluggish responses. You call folks for supper, and in due course, they come; meanwhile the soufflé falls or the soup gets cold. You ask the class members to be quiet, and some sit down and shut up, but it’s quite a while before the last few stop talking. You call your dog to come in the house and it comes, grudgingly, finding half a dozen new things to sniff at before actually reaching the back door.

Suppose you are dealing with just such a behavior. You give the cue, and you get the response, but after a delay. Now you want to fix that. First, practice it a few times to judge the average length of the delay. You can count seconds to yourself, or actually use a stopwatch. Now give the cue, watch the time go by, and reinforce the response if it occurs within the average time. If the cue response occurs outside the time limit, call an end to the trial (with dogs, easily done by moving to a new location). Then give the cue again and start your countdown again.

In Don’t Shoot the Dog I told this story about a limited hold. At Sea Life Park in the 1960s, one of our most effective show highlights was a group of six little spinner dolphins that did various leaps and whirls in response to underwater sound cues. The most spectacular behavior was the aerial spin for which they are named. Initially, when that cue went on, spins occurred raggedly and sporadically across a fifteen-second period. Using a stopwatch, we started turning the cue on only for twelve seconds, and marking and rewarding only spins that occurred during that time. When most of the animals were spinning within that period we cranked down the limited hold, shortening the time to! ten sec onds, then five, and eventually to two and a half seconds. It couldn’t go much shorter, because the animals had to dive, first, to get up speed to jump fast enough to do a good spin. In any case, every animal learned that in order to get a fish it had to hit the air and perform the spin within two and a half seconds of the time the cue went on.

As a result, the animals poised themselves attentively near the underwater loudspeaker. When the spin cue went on, the pool erupted in an explosion of whirling bodies in the air; it was quite spectacular. One day while sitting among the audience I was amused to overhear a professorial type firmly informing his companions that the only way we could be getting that kind of response was by electric shock.

“The object is not to punish slower runs, but to pay for faster ones. You make you criterion roomy enough so that most, but not all, of the runs are within your chosen limit.”

The length of time your learner takes to respond to a cue is called, in the lab, “latency.” A long gap is called high latency, a quick response shows low latency. You can sometimes shape a low latency response, without bothering to measure the time, by asking for a lot of responses in quick succession and reinforcing only the quicker ones. For example, in demonstrating a shift in latency, I sometimes seek out a dog with a slow, lethargic sit: on cue, but high latency. I call him, back up a step or two (to get him moving forward), click and treat when he comes, and repeat a couple of times. When the dog is coming with me willingly I back up and say “sit,” stop, and click just as his back legs begin to fold; treat, call him, back up again quickly, and cue “sit” again, clicking the act of sitting, not waiting for the full sit. Then I progress to backing up, cueing the sit, and clicking as the rump hits the ground; and then to clicking as he sits but only if he sits instantly when he hears the word. If he hesitates, I back up again, ! call him again, and say “sit” again. In about twenty clicks (and thirty seconds or so) the limited hold is down to practically zero and the dog is sitting like a champion. One would then repeat this facing the other direction, and then perhaps in another room, on another day, and finally outdoors, to generalize the low-latency response. And of course having embarked on this repair job you would also drop from your own repertoire the habit of reinforcing slow sits.


With Kind Permission from Karen Pryor: Many more wonderful articles can be found at www.clickertraining.com

The housekeeping suffers, but what do you care?
Who minds a few noseprints and a little more hair?
So let's keep a puppy, you can always find room,
And a little more time for the dust cloth and broom.
Clicker Classes for Dogs
6 week course
• Eugenie Chopin
• Karen Bullivant
starts 28 Jul 2012
Sat. July 28th: 9:30 to 4; Saturday mornings 9:30 to 12:30 for 6 weeks
R 1600  Eugenie Chopin
011 884 3156
Saturday mornings 9:30 to 12:30 [more detail]

This class will include 4 x three hour sessions on How Dogs learn and
6 practical sessions on Clicker Training with Dogs

If you have always wanted to learn a method of training that doesn’t need aversives to be effective, then join us for a Clicker Experience! Although Operant Conditioning and the Clicker have been around for many years, especially in the Marine World and in training many species of animals for film, it’s only in the last 10 years that it has started to become Mainstream in the Dog Training World. Here is your chance to catch up!

If you have been wondering what the fuss is all about, Clicker Training is basically about re-enforcing Behaviour that you want. It works on the principles of giving reward for correct behaviour rather than using corrections and aversives for unwanted behaviour. As a result, you can establish true respect from your dog without fear. It’s fun to do, the dogs love it and therefore gain in confidence and you can finally understand why they do the things they do and how your Behaviour and actions influence them daily!
NOTE: An aversive is anything the dog doesn’t like! So if you yell at your dog and it likes the attention, it might actually be a reward!

This class is designed to teach those who want to truly understand the concepts of Operant Conditioning, how animals learn, how to get through the barriers that stop the learning process and how to move forward in small enough steps to be successful in anything that you want to teach. If you are a Trainer, are interested in being a Trainer, or just are a dog owner who wants to understand more, then this might be the class for you!

Eugenie’s next 6-Week Clicker & Leaning Theory Class will start January 24th, 2007!

Claire Grobbelaar is a TTouch Practitioner who teaches clicker classes in Cape Town. Contact her on 082-784-7524

There's hardly a limit to the dogs you can add,
The thought of a cutback sure makes you sad.
Each one is so special, so useful, so funny.
The vet, the food bill grows larger, you owe money…

Every year the summer temperatures get higher, something to do with global warming, and more and more people are installing air conditioners in their homes. Your puppy might be nice and comfortable inside with you, but a lot of puppies are outside more than inside. Your puppy cannot tell you when their temperature rises so it is your responsibility to ensure that your pup has sufficient shelter from the sun, adequate water to drink, and a way of cooling off when the summer sun rises. 
A puppy’s body temperature is normally between 101°F and 102°F. They regulate their body temperature by panting, expelling heat out, causing an evaporatory reaction. If the puppy cannot expel the heat fast enough, his body temperature rises. A rise of 3 degrees to a temperature of 105°F is all it takes to send your pup into a dangerous situation. At this temperature, your puppy can no longer cope with reducing his body heat and the oxygen demand goes up to where the pup cannot keep up, and his temperature continues to rise. When the temperature hits 108°F, the heart, brain, liver, kidneys, and intestinal tracts start to break down at a cellular level, and the damage can progress at an alarming rate. Even immediate treatment and effective cooling to bring his temperature down can leave your pup with internal damage that may affect his health in long-term ways.

Early Signs of Heat Stroke
Rapid breathing, dry mouth and nose, rapid heart rate, and gums that leave their healthy colour for dull, greyish-pink, or red, are all early stages of heat stroke. This IS an EMERGENCY! Even at the earliest stage of heat stroke, you may be fighting for your puppy’s life. You must get him to a veterinarian as soon as possible.
These symptoms can be followed in minutes by collapse, seizures, coma and death. 
Never leave your pup in a hot car; this is a sure way to bring on heat stroke. A hot car is like an oven, with temperatures that can rise an astounding 34°F per minute!

Fresh water and shade are the two most important things a puppy who spends any amount of time outside needs. Puppies dehydrate very quickly in the summer sun, so be sure to refill a large water dish often throughout the day. Even if your yard is well shaded naturally, you will still need to erect some sort of shelter from the heat. Choose a spot that is in the shade, or in an area that isn’t under direct sunlight. Make sure it is large enough for air to pass freely through it.

Moulded Plastic Pools and Sprinklers are great for cooling off hot puppies.
Fill the pool up in a shaded area to keep the water from heating. Be sure and change the water often as well, to prevent mosquito larvae from taking up residence. The best size for a plastic pool is about 200mm to 250mm (for larger dogs), less for short dogs. Make sure your puppy is supervised all the time, and that a smaller pup can easily get in and out of the pool.

Soak a bandana, let it absorb cool water and then put it in the freezer. When it is really cold, wrap it around your pup’s neck for hours of cooling comfort.
If your puppy is showing the first signs of heat exhaustion, rapid breathing, rapid heart rate, the first thing you must do is remove him from the confining area. Nine times out of ten, heat exhaustion occurs while the puppy is confined, whether it is in a car, crate, or doghouse.

Get your puppy into the shade, and soak him with cool water. Do NOT use extremely cold or iced water. This will cause blood vessels to constrict and will stop the heat from escaping. You can apply ice packs to the areas underneath his front legs, and to the groin area for rapid blood cooling. Give your puppy enough water to wet his mouth and throat, but do NOT allow him to drink copious amounts! If you can, take your pup’s temperature, this is done anally to get the most accurate reading. Do NOT cover your puppy, even with a cold towel, as this will prevent the heat from escaping. Do NOT place him back in his crate, but keep him with you, with windows down and air conditioning on high, to allow evaporation, which will aid in the cooling process. There is also a danger that puppy can become too cold. Monitor the temperatures and stop the cooling process as soon as his temperature reads normally again. Get to your Vet as quickly as possible.

Niki gives regular puppy classes and can be reached at niki@ttouch.co.za

Your folks never visit, few friends come to stay,
Except other dog folks, who all live the same way.
Your lawn has now died, and your shrubs are dead too,
But your weekends are busy, you're off with your crew.

The ideal nature getaway with your animals encompasses a whole lot of planning in terms of the best pet-friendly destination. Whether you choose the beach, a hiking trail, or campsite, Safety should always be your first priority. This month, we will explore some “Safety First” tips and look at care routines and checklists before you hit the road.

Health Checklist:

  • õ Trim your dog’s nails. Too-long nails make walking uncomfortable and painful. If the nails are cut too short, the dog looses traction for running, jumping and climbing.
  • õ Vaccinations should be updated to protect your dog from catching or transmitting disease and viruses.
  • õ Trim long coats under the belly, behind the legs and between the toes to prevent sharp grasses from going undetected. With less hair it is also easier to spot ticks if you were in an infected area.
  • õA female in season should not be on trail. The hormonal scent can attract other unwanted dogs.

Camping & Hiking Checklist:

  • õPermanent ID tag (name, address, home and cell phone) and temporary tag with the name of the campsite or resort where you are currently staying. A Microchip is the best way to ensure that your dog can be identified. Any Vet or SPCA should be able to help you.
  • õ Collar with a colourful bandanna or bright harness for hiking to identify your pet. A harness has added advantage of offering a safe way to grab onto your dog during an emergency situation.
  • õ Proof of vaccinations and health certificates might be useful in National Parks.
  • õ Water and snacks for you and your dog. Collapsible dishes or Ziploc bags make lightweight bowls.
  • õ Plastic bags for cleaning up after your dog.
  • õ Extra-large, extra-strength plastic bags (handy for rain or sitting on wet ground).
  • õ Apply a tick-and-flea treatment before prior to hikes. Consult your veterinarian on the most suitable treatment.
  • õ Your dogs favourite chew toy.
  • õ Dog bed and a tent that is large enough for you and your dog.

First-Aid kit:

First-aid kits treat minor injuries that occur or provide temporary treatment of more serious injuries until you get your dog to the veterinarian.

  • õ First-aid book
  • õBuffered aspirin can be appropriate for stiffness and muscle soreness in older dogs at the end of a long excursion.
  • õ Antihistamine or hydrocortisone spray or ointment to relieve plant rashes or stings.
  • õ Scissors with a rounded tip for trimming hair around a wound site.
  • õ Hydro peroxide to disinfect surface abrasions and wounds and antiseptic ointment.
  • õ Gauze pads and bandages. Sock or bootie to protect a wounded paw.
  • õ Tweezers to remove ticks or foreign objects in a wound.
  • õ Space blanket for warmth.
  • õ Your veterinarian’s telephone number and the contact information for the veterinary clinic closest to your campsite or trailhead.

There's dog food and vitamins, training and shots.
And entries and travel and motels which cost lots.
Is it worth it, you wonder? Are you caught in a trap?
Then that favorite dog comes and climbs in your lap.

If the Dog Can’t go into the Garden, bring the Garden to the Dog!
My major concern in my canine family at the moment is Danilo, who turned 17 in December. He still shows a great zest for life, LOVES his food and even surprised me by mounting Angelique last week! This is on back legs that are having more and more difficulty staying under his body. He goes regularly to Doggy Paddle (Hydro Therapy), takes lots of supplements and gets regular TTouch. However, we live upstairs and more and more he’s slipping on the stairs. I worry that one day he’ll hurt himself and we’ll really be in trouble.

I’m still looking for someone who might be able to fashion some sort of lift scheme for me to get him up and down. He’s way too big for me to lift and even my male staff struggles with him. So in thinking things through, I decided why not bring the outside upstairs? We have a large balcony and I’m now planning on making the far end a grass area for Danilo. Hopefully we’ll sort something out this week and I’ll let you know what happens. This will mean that as the stairs become more of a problem, he’ll have a place to do his business without using the stairs and without me needing to find someone who can lift him.

I’m quite sure that I’ll need to put on a gate or all the dogs will think it’s their private park! I doubt the Kikuyu would last very long at that rate! If anyone has ideas for me, I’m all ears! - Either for my proposed lawn on the balcony or for some sort of hoist to go up and down from the 1st floor.

Thanks for your help!

His look says you're special and you know that you will
Keep all of the critters in spite of the bill.
Some just for showing and some just to breed.
And some just for loving, they all fill a need.?

A 3 Year Old German Shepard Wags her Tail for the First Time

When Eugenie asked me to write an article for the newsletter about my TTouch experience, I thought to myself that this was such a wonderful opportunity to write about the work that I have so much passion for. Sitting down, putting pen to paper, I realized that this was not an easy task as there is just so much to talk about, and what experience takes precedence over the rest?

In September of this year, I qualified as a TTouch Practitioner, a journey of 3 years which has taught me many things, not just about TTouch, but about myself and the animals with which we share our lives. I have been honoured to have met wonderful people who have contributed to this fantastic experience and I am glad to count every one of them as a friend. I am however, especially grateful to Kalyn, my 3½ year old German Shepherd who started the training with me as a 6 month old puppy. Kalyn has been one of my greatest teachers, I have learnt so much from her, and she has infinite patience, accepting all that was done to her during the 6 trainings, from being led around the confidence course, to being wrapped in a body wrap and being worked on by other people. She took all this in her stride, and never once complained or refused to go with me to the next day.

In September, our group welcomed Linda Tellington Jones, who came to do the Session 6 training. During this week, I asked her to work with Kalyn, who up until a few months ago would not allow her tail to be touched or brushed. She has also never wagged her tail. Linda worked with Kalyn through the session, and I have carried on since. I am overjoyed to report that for the first time in her life, Kalyn is wagging her tail. We still have a lot of work ahead of us, but I can already see the changes in her posture and personality. Many of us have similar stories to share, and this is the miracle of TTouch, a gift that we can share not only with our animal friends but with humans as well.

My 3 year training was full of laughter and tears, difficulties to overcome and fears to conquer.  For a few of the students including me, working at the SPCA was very difficult – many tears were shed in the parking lot of Sandton SPCA, but with the support of our group we managed to work through this difficult time and make a difference in the animal’s life that we were working on. To our clients, both the ones that graciously gave up their time to join us on our client days and the ones that welcomed us into their homes, and allowed case studies to be done on their animals, a heartfelt thank you, because without you, our training would have been that much more difficult.

Although I am sad to have finished my training, I am excited that I will be able to go out and spread the TTouch work, helping both the animals and their humans wherever I can. One thing that Linda has said that will remain with me for as long as I have the honour of doing this work – EVERY BEING IS PERFECT - REMEMBER THEIR PERFECTION. I know that I will not be able to change many things, but I will do my outmost to change the world one TTouch at a time.

Nicky Lucka – Certified TTouch Practitioner Level 1


Thokwa: A procedure that would have been almost impossible

Edie Jane and her Tellington Touch colleagues visited African Horseback Safaris camp Macatoo in April 2006 and helped us with some of our nervous horses.  One of these horses was Thokwa. 

Thokwa is a lovely little local Botswana horse, who has had a difficult start to life.  He was found in an area where Sarah-Jane (SJ), the owner and founder of African Horseback Safaris, has found other horses.  All of them have suffered from varying degrees of mistreatment but Thokwa – a stunning dun (buckskin) rig – was badly affected by the abuse.  Although he literally shone in the sunlight and captured the eye immediately, it was his obvious mistrust of humans that tugged at the conscience and SJ decided to buy him and give him a second chance in the Okavango Delta.

SJ and her horse crew have been working with Thokwa to restore his faith in humans for over the six months that he has been at Macatoo and have made good progress.  Due to such horrors of un-anaesthetised attempts to castrate him, Thokwa is a difficult case and requires care and experience in his handling and whilst progress has been made it has been slow.  Routine veterinary and farrier care is always very challenging.

The crew at Macatoo asked Edie-Jane to help with building Thokwa’s confidence to allow his feet to be trimmed.  Using her Tellington Touch method, Edie-Jane was able to build confidence in Thokwa and the Macatoo crew noticed a significant change in his behaviour.  So much so that when he unfortunately picked up a thorn in his nearside left hoof the day after Edie-Jane left Macatoo, we were able to remove the thorn and apply a poultice and treat his ailment.  This procedure would have been almost impossible to do without sedation prior to Edie-Jane’s work.  One week later our farrier was able to trim his hooves without sedation – a first for him!

Although Thokwa still has a very long way to go before he is completely happy and confident in the company of people, with Edie-Jane’s help we are well on the way to success.  We sincerely hope that Edie-Jane will return to Macatoo to help with Thokwa and our other horses but, in the meantime, her work is being continued by the grooms and specialist horse personnel in camp.

This letter was forwarded to us by Edie Jane – unfortunately the Author is unknown.


The Magic of Mouth Work

What an amazing six days! Some of us got our Practitioner Level One Certificate, others got their PiT Certificates and once again we got to work with Linda. Just by watching Linda work on an animal, we are reminded what TTouch is all about? It’s not just the technical side - the Touches, Slides, Lifts, Equipment and Groundwork. It is about putting your heart in your hand when you work and recognising the perfection of the animal being worked on.  There is no judgement, there are no expectations – your connection with the animal is total, and from this connection comes the trust, and from the trust come the changes. What amazing work this is that we are able to do and what amazing teachers we have to learn from, not just our instructors, but the animals themselves!
This session was especially meaningful to me as, Brady, my gorgeous 28 month old, full of beans Border Collie was part of the session. Several months ago Brady was bitten twice, once on the bridge of his nose and again on his inside hind leg. His personality (understandably) changed.  He reverted to insecure behaviour and became a ‘velcro’ dog and was nervous when meeting new dogs. I worked on him myself but it was only at this last session that I realized how much damage had actually been done. On meeting a tent full of new people and dogs, instead of doing what he would have in the past, investigating both people and dogs and being friendly, he reverted to his old puppy insecurity – bouncing up and down like a pogo stick and acting like a clown. As one of our clients described her own dog “he was like an octopus on acid”!  Linda soon had her hands on him and the magic began. He was starting to relax and Linda was doing mouth work, which he enjoys. She suddenly changed the position of her hand and cupped her hand over the bridge of his nose, very like a bitch would do to her puppy to reprimand it, with 4 fingers on one side and her thumb on the other. He instantly stiffened and tried to get away.  Instead of giving him the normal break I thought was coming, Linda persevered. She contained him with a hand on his collar, under his chin, and kept on working. After a few minutes the change was unbelievable. His whole body suddenly relaxed, almost slumped and he became still and relaxed and let Linda work. For Brady, this was the turning point and he improved steadily over the next few days, even letting other practitioners work on him and do the same mouth work that Linda had demonstrated. I still have further work to do with him to get him back to his old self, but with patience and the miracle of TTouch, I have no doubt that it will happen.
I must say that at the end of the session I felt a sense of sadness – we had become so much of a family – the TTouch family - and now that I had received my Level One certificate, a very important chapter of my life was ending.  But as they say, with endings come new beginnings, and my dream of teaching this wonderful work to people was no longer a distant dream, it IS a reality!
To Zeus who led me to TTouch, and all the wonderful teachers, friend and animals who have been a part of the last three year, a heartfelt thank you!!

by Scotty Valadao, Practitioner 1 for Companion Animals



Ear work Helps Save a Life

“ Jane, I think she’s gone…..” 
My words, scarcely uttered for fear of them being true, slipped out into that bright Balgowan balmy day – sun shining in a bright blue sky, the winter warmth spreading across my back as I knelt on the long grass beside my beloved cavalier, Annabelle. Clearly, she had been kicked by my horse and was in deep shock, her pupils dilated and her breathing laboured as a trickle of blood came from her nose into the grass as she lay there. 

Only minutes before she had been running free next to my horse, enjoying the freedom of her first outride, with wide open spaces and the limitless joy of boundless space.  We were at our favourite spot, up Gallopy Hill where the smells of wild birds and bush buck are on every patch of the dry winter earth…and here she was, small, limp and seemingly lifeless.

Her stiff struggle of a seizure had been calmed by my voice and the reassurance of my massage. I prayed hard, and struggled to keep my voice steady and in control, talking to her all the time.  Talking to her was able to keep that gut-wrenching feeling at bay of my recurring nightmare of a few years before, of holding that warm, limp body of our little puppy, Rosie, who had died after a freak accident.  I decided “ NO!”  THIS WON’T HAPPEN TO YOU ANNIE-KINS.”  Think, think….talk, talk; keep her with us… 

I blocked out the sound of Jane’s crying as she held our horses, and asked her to walk the horses back and fetch my car to take Annie to the vet.   Annie was breathing again… her little ribcage moving ever so slightly.  Yes, her lips were still pink and that was a good sign…

Sitting alone with her on the top of that hill, time went by in slow motion – I re-lived her short little life of seven months as  I furiously massaged the tips of her ears and kept thinking positive thoughts. She was salivating badly and her bleeding nose meant she could only breathe through her mouth and this was proving difficult for her.  As I gently rubbed her all over, I kept talking, for fear of the dark thoughts that would seep into my head.  Talk, talk, and rub, rub.  Rubbing her ears especially, all I could remember were Doreen’s words of advice – “ If your dog is ever in an accident, or severely traumatised, rub the tips of the ears to help with the shock….”

My feeling of helplessness dissipated as I remembered all my Tellington Touch training as I worked furiously and desperately on little Annie.  All my energy went into her, through my voice and my hands.  Her limp body had relaxed and her eyes were looking more normal.  I can remember thinking that it was such a beautiful day, and this was such a beautiful dog – she just HAS to pull though…

It is now five days since that awful day.  Annie is still at the vet, off the drip now, and we wait to see if she has sight in her left eye from the head trauma of the kick.  Her bright, plucky character is coming back slowly each day. More and more I can see her bouncy indomitable spirit returning – at first only a glimmer, but growing stronger and stronger.    Thanks to the dedication of the vet team, I hope to bring her home soon – and to be able to cuddle this special girl.  I am convinced she loved me enough to come back to me, through the chaos and the pain, and fight for her life.  Our precious, darling Annie – surely she is one of God’s angels sent to be with us on Earth?

Sally Berriman,
Seekem Cavaliers, Nottingham Road

But winter's a hassle, the dogs hate it too.
But they must have their walks though they're numb and you're blue.
Late evening is awful, you scream and you shout
At the dogs on the sofa who refuse to go out.

Book of the Month:

The South African Pet-Friendly Directory – 4th Edition.
The Definitive Guide to Holiday Accommodation that Welcomes You and Your Pets - by Sharyn Spicer and Janine Nepgen.

Travelling with those we love and whose company we enjoy can be one of life’s greatest and most enriching pleasures. Today, pets are more and more becoming an integral part of the modern family and as such are being included in outings like family holidays. With its varied choice of holiday accommodation, which includes: hotels; guesthouses; B&Bs; caravan parks; mountain cabins; self-catering cottages; bush camps; country lodges; guest farms and luxury apartments, you can now go on holiday or away on business, accompanied by your dog, your cat, your bird and even your horse!

So much more than just a travel guide, The South African Pet Friendly Directory (4th Edition), features 226 exciting places to try and is a must-have for anyone with a pet.

The Directory looks at various aspects of travelling with your Pets including: Travel Tips, Dog Walks, Pets’ Health, Vets and many more. The accommodation section has also been coloured coded according to the various Provinces for easy viewing.

www.petfriendly.co.za or email Sharyn on sspicer@intekom.co.za
You can also find the book at Outdoor Warehouse, Exclusive Books or you local Vet.
The recommended price is R120 but can vary at various outlets.

Website of the Month: www.ttouch.co.za

Yes, our new site is finally up and running! While we are still working on it and not everything is changed, it has many new features, including articles and information on TTouch, a Testimonials section where people have written to us and told us their TTouch stories, up to date workshop info, A new Shopping section where you can order on line, a brand new Clicker section with interesting articles from friends around the world and much much more!

10 Secrets my dog taught me – Carlo de Vito (All wording taken directly from the book)

 Secret 7: Every once in a while, it’s good to play the clown

“To make mistakes is human; to stumble is commonplace; to be able to laugh at yourself is maturity” – William A. Ward

The great pleasure of a dog is that you make a fool of yourself with him, and not only will he not scold you, he will make a fool of himself too…

Dogs have no shame. They are funny, and they don’t care if you laugh at them or with them. When you are happy, they are happy. I have found that is important to have a sense of humour. I hope it makes it easier to be around. It sure made Exley easier to be around.  I notice in my worst moments, especially in my marriage, when it’s gotten the most difficult, is when I have lacked patience or a sense of humour in an important moment.

Secrets to remember:

  • Dogs don’t take themselves too seriously. They have no dignity to uphold. That’s what makes then so lovable.
  • You should always have a sense of humour – especially about yourself. A little self-deprecating humour make you much more human and interesting to family, friends and co-workers.
  • It is important to be able to laugh. Laughter is a great healer and a great release.
  • The gift of laughter is always appreciated.

The dogs and the dog shows, the travel, the thrills,
The work and the worry, the pressure, the bills.
The whole thing seems worth it, the dogs are your life.
They're charming and funny and offset the strife.
17.   EVENTS

We really recommend this! And it’s so easy to do!

 South African Mass Animal Sterilization Trust (SAMAST) is raising funds to sterilize pets in  
 disadvantaged areas.
 Their target is to raise R500 000 for 2500 Sterilizations. (http://www.samast.co.za)

     SMS "PETS" TO 38081 to donate R10 to this worthy cause!

You could WIN a River Adventure for a family of four worth R10 000 from Felix Unite River Adventures or a Pioneer Home Theatre System valued at R8000! Repeat Sms’s improve your chances!

Dr. Dion Woodborne is a veterinarian who has seen first hand the suffering of unwanted puppies and kittens. In order to raise money for SAMAST, Dion will be swimming 25km journey through icy, shark-infested waters starts at Melkbosstrand, going around Robben Island, and ending at Three Anchor Bay.

You can also visit the SAMAST website and pledge per km of Dion’s swim.

Your life-style has changed. Things won't be the same.
Yes, those dogs are addictive and so is the dog game!!.

Missing: Siamese Cat:

Ching is 13 months old, male, and neutered. He went missing on the 21st December from the Ruimsig area, a complex, Manly, in van der Kloof street. Please contact: Rina Opperman: rina@uiplay.com, +2711 465 8313
+2782 4694885

Stray: Siamese X:

Zeb is a adult male x siamese cat who has decided my home is his new home. He is really an amazing cat. how I have placed notices at our local vets, SPCA and AACL and nobody has claimed him. Please help me find a good home for him (preferably with other cats!) Please contact Judy on 0834087696.

Kittens found in gutter:

We found 4 little kittens in the gutter by my house. They are still very young, and we are bottle-feeding them now. Luckily, they are strong and are all drinking well. There are 3 girls (Black, Black& White and Grey and white) and 1 boy (Grey). These little angels will be needing good homes in a few weeks. Please contact Judy on 0834087696
Urgent: Owners are Immigrating:
GSD, Male, 4 yrs.; Ridgeback X, Female, 5 yrs old; Cat, Female, long hair, grey.
Please contact Miranda: 082 684 662 or mikeandmir@absamail.co.za

Welsh Terrier Puppies:

Born 9 January:  Will be register with KUSA in the next week or two.
Welsh Terriers are not related to Airedales and are one of the oldest dog breeds.  If you are interested, please contact Jenna Holst on 083-264-1378 or 012-244-1563 or jenna.holst@gmail.com

Miniature Dauschund Puppies:

Looking for homes - 2 Females & 1 Male currently 5 weeks old. Please email: Tracey Lander traceyl@nandocas.com

Urgent: Saluki needs home;

A gorgeous neutered male saluki is looking for a bigger home. The dog is currently kept at a Town-House Complex and desperately needs a bigger yard. If you can assist, please contact Bernadette Cook a

Rottweiler: Urgently looking for a new family:

Emma is a 3 year-old female. Her owner works for UN world food program and she is soon due to be re-assigned, probably to Afghanistan. If you are interested, or know of anybody that could provide a loving home for Emma, please contact Christina Colbert directly. Her email is: Christina.Colbert@wfp.org

Dog related employment opportunity:

The uMngeni (Howick) SPCA has created an exciting new position, which would suit someone with a passion for animals as well as good people skills. So, if you are an animal and people person and you think this could be the job for you please fax your CV to: The Manager, uMngeni SPCA, Howick, KZN or fax number 033 330 4774
or by email to info@howickspca.org.za

© 2006 TTouch - eugenie@ttouch.co.za.   All Rights Reserved.