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StarTribune.com

Talking With Animals

April 24, 2008

Because he spoke to the fish in the creek

He tried to tell us that the animals could speak

And who knows? Perhaps they do

How do you know they don't just because they've never spoken to you?

- from Michael Martin Murphy's "Boy From the Country"

Yes, animals communicate. They communicate with each other, with people and have even built a pretty good rapport with Mother Nature.

Many of us can understand what animals are saying by interpreting audible cues like a whimper or a purr. Anyone who has been to a dog park knows that a bow means, "I want to play!" while snarling teeth say, "Back off!" Some of us communicate with our animals on a daily basis when we recognize patterns in behavior like scratching at the door, or aloof cats that come running at the sound of a can opening.

Not satisfied with non-verbal communication, a Japanese company recently developed a "Bow-Lingual" device that utilizes a wireless micrphone attached to your dog's collar to translate every yip, whine and bark, letting you know if your pet is happy, sad, frustrated or needy.

Animal psychic vs. animal communicator

But can we really have a conversation with animals? Professional Animal Communicator Dawn Huebner, M.A., www.animalpsyche.com, says, "Absolutely." Huebner says she has had the ability to converse with all animals - wild and domestic - since she can remember.

"I thought everyone got this information from animals," Huebner says. "I've been doing it my whole life; I just didn't realize what it was. I didn't have the terms for it and nobody talked about it.

"I think animal communication can take on many different forms ... some people get their information through sight, sound, touch or energy. I actually get words, sentences and full conversations," Huebner says.

Careful to make a distinction between being an animal psychic (one who predicts the future) and an animal communicator (one who is intuitive and in the now), Huebner uses her skill for a vast array of clients with a plethora of reasons. Most common, she says, are questions about a pet's health or end-of-life issues. Often, she is called when owners are having behavioral problems with their pets at home. Huebner has also helped clients locatemissing pets or deal with wild animals on their property.

How it works

All you need to do is submit a photo of your animal and a list of questions you would like Huebner to ask your pet. Then schedule an appointment with Huebner to hear their answers. If any specific health or behavioral problems are identified, Huebner also works with a certified dog trainer and certified healing touch practitioner, www.fullcirclebehavior.com, to help you alleviate those issues.

Huebner connected with SoCo, my blue male standard poodle, and Cappy, my four-year-old male miniature parti-colored poodle. As rescues, they both have some baggage in their background, so I was excited to hear what they had to say. At the arranged time, we spoke for more than an hour on the phone as Huebner relayed the answers to the questions I asked my dogs.

SoCo hates sailing

I was relieved to hear that SoCo had minimal aches or pains and felt pretty spry for his nine years. Cappy, on the other hand, had a painful past with multiple owners who were abusive to him and he requires much more emotional nurturing. I also learned that SoCo's favorite toy was a rubber duck and Cappy prefers squeaky ones. What do they do all day while I'm at work? SoCo guards the house and Cappy just waits for me to come home. And this summer, only Cappy will go sailing because SoCo told me he gets a little nauseated.

Huebner says she prefers to conduct her appointments by phone because it is efficient for the client and it helps her remain objective - without being influenced by seeing the animals in their surroundings or witnessing how they interact with their owner.

"I think it's one of those things that when people are ready, they'll try it," Huebner says. "They have nothing to lose and may do it just for entertainment, but then realize it has value. I would also say that there are a lot of things that haven't been solved by science yet, like intuition. I really don't try to convince anyone of anything because I don't want to force my opinion on anyone else, but this is another option for people seeking information from their animals to improve their relationship."

And really, isn't communication the key to any good relationship? By the way, SoCo and Cappy say, "Hi."

La Donna Seely is a volunteer for A Rotta Love Plus, www.arottalove.org, an award winning rottweiler and pit bull rescue, adoption and education organization.

Questions or comments?  Please call us at  651-480-8866
Mailing Address:  Dawn Huebner, Animal Psyche
216 Myrtle St W, #546
Stillwater, MN 55082

Email: dawn@animalpsyche.com

Copyright Animal Psyche 2005