Thank you, Janeen, for this lovely story of your special soul dogs!

I have been blessed with many special pets and three who I would say were truly soul pets all were Rhodesian Ridgebacks.

The first one had an amazing capacity to connect with everyone he met. He had an innate calmness and leadership qualities and just touched everyone he met. Once when we were at an agility trial he was lying down and a small boy with very bad cerebral palsy came over and laid down on him. Tonka was totally relaxed and just laid there. The father was in tears. He said no dog have ever allowed his son to get close because his movements were so rough and jerky due to the palsy. Tonka just always new what everyone needed.

My next soul pet was a little guy I named Pride. He was not the puppy I wanted to pick, but something kept gnawing at me while I was at my breeders that just made me tell her he was choosing me. He climbed in my lap and went to sleep and the word “pride” kept popping in my head. If he told me his name, he had to come home with me.

Not even a week later I found out he had cancer… the tumors never stopped him. He was a true, living daily lesson. He truly lived: He saw fun and enjoyment in everything. He inspired many people to let go out their issues and situations and live. After all, this puppy who was dying could enjoy his time here, so why shouldn’t they? He didn’t get to stay on earth long, but he reminded me of something I had forgotten: Bad things happen, yes, but that doesn’t mean we are defined by them.

And my last soul pet, still my number one, Bagheera. He came into my life when I needed him most, as I was in a bad abusive marriage. He gave me strength and courage and reminded me that life is for living. He had an immense happiness about him. He was also blessed to share Pride’s time on earth and I know that he knew Pride’s time was short. He was so gentle and loving with Pride.

Bagheera would never let things weigh him down. Even when a dog would charge him aggressively, he would choose to act goofy and silly and change the situation. It was impressive to witness. And it always confused the aggressor to the point that they forgot why they were there. For me he was a healing gift. He helped me leave my ex and find an amazing man who loves me for me—”warts and all,” as my dear hubby says.

If you have a special connection with an animal, we’d love to feature you—just contact us Mali & Joe, authors of The Soulmate Experience: A Practical Guide to Creating Extraordinary Relationships