Monthly Archives: November 2015

Give the “Thanksgiving Question” a New Twist

A moral dilemma

A moral dilemma

On Thanksgiving, I am thankful for many things. I have a supportive human team and a safe and warm home. has enjoyed a year of faithful readers who have shared their personal insights on many topics.  I have met many canine colleagues, and my blog has even attracted a few feline followers.  At this time of year, there are many fun visits from human family members and friends,  and most of them are simpatico with my species and may share a little treat with me. The house is filled with the aroma of delicious foods.  Alas, my attempt to make off with the turkey was thwarted.  I didn’t even get a lick!

I am aware that there is a Thanksgiving tradition for many humans to describe some of the reasons one is thankful.   Perhaps your family takes a few minutes to share these reflections before you start the large holiday meal.

I don’t want to spoil this Norman Rockwell moment but let me suggest that for many of my readers, this question is just too easy to answer.   When you think about it, most of us can think of many blessings with just a little effort: a roof over your head, a job that provides for your family’s needs, a new baby or grandchild,  a recent graduate,  or a good friend.

So let’s raise the bar!  (Or raise the bark, in my case.)  Let’s think out of the boxer![1]  Here is my Thanksgiving challenge:  Think of something in your life that began as a great failure or disappointment, a vexing challenge, or a personal problem, that later became something for which you are now very thankful.

Let me give my personal story as an example, I have shared this tail[2] before.  After six years of faithful service with my first human team, my position was eliminated for no apparent reason.  I was alone, frightened and without hope.  Then kind people gave me a new life and helped me find my current position.  I am enormously thankful for everyone who helped me at that difficult time[3].   While I have not forgotten this painful experience, I also realize I would not be the dog I am today if this had not happened.  I am now a member of an organization where my contributions  are highly valued and I am achieving my lifelong dream of writing my own blog.

What about you?  Have you had such an experience?  Perhaps you did not get that high profile job, only to later realize that you achieved much more by taking a different route.   You may have learned something from a failure in a small matter that prevented you from making the same mistake on a much larger project.  Perhaps a personal relationship did not develop into what you had hoped it would be, but you are now very happy with someone you would never have met if you had been involved with someone else.  Or maybe you did not get accepted by your “dream school”, only to later realize  your second choice was really the perfect place for you.

Why think about Thanksgiving in this way?   Life is messy.  It is not always a smooth journey.  It is not a 100 meter dash.  It is a cross country run[4], up and down hills, through the woods, with twists and turns around corners where you can’t see what lies ahead.  And even if you get lost, if you keep the faith, you will get to the finish line.  You may learn something new or discover you are stronger than you think.  You may find people cheering you on and helping you find your way.

So this year, celebrate and be thankful for these blessings!  Happy Thanksgiving!

Your best friend,



P.S.  Please feel free to share your personal story.  Also, any recipe for holiday dog treats would be most welcome!

[1] I am fully aware that I am violating my own rule against doggie plays on words and puns.  Blame it on the airborne Tryptophan.

[2] Pun alert.

[3] Please adopt your next pet!

[4] Or a Turkey Trot, in keeping with the season.  By the way, do you get turkey at the end of the race?  I might check it out next year!