Wednesday, June 8, 2005

A conversation with Stanley

Animal communicator Amelia Kinkade demonstrates her skills

A conversation with Stanley

Animal communication is something that no animal owner can deny wishing they could do. Wouldn't it be wonderful to be able to converse with your canine best friend in the same way you do with your two-legged one?

At the Sun Valley Wellness Festival last month I was fortunate enough to have my dog Stanley chosen as the subject of Amelia Kinkade's lecture, "The Magic of Animal Communication." Towards the end of her hour-long presentation, I was ushered on stage with a canine bundle of energy and she began the process of teaching the audience how to understand what my scruffy wirehaired pointing griffon was trying to say to the world.

Sadly, the 15 minutes we had to work in weren't nearly long enough for me to unravel the complexities of Stanley's mind (I long to know what he really thinks about our choice of bedroom color). But the aim of his presence was that of teacher, so I was forced to keep the important questions for a later date.

Kinkade believes passionately that her gift is one that can be taught. During the lecture she led the audience through an intense prayer, a process she uses to ready her mind for the reception of the animal's thoughts. Ten minutes later we were all ready to talk to Stanley.

Kinkade directed the audience to ask Stanley a variety of straightforward questions, such as: "What is your favorite activity?" "What's your favorite food?" and "Do you live with any cats?" But the one that elicited the most intriguing response was, "Who is your favorite dog?"

"One way to do this," advised Kinkade, "is from the outside. You stay in your body and you look at him and you see his favorite dog right here next to him. The other way to do it is by putting your consciousness in his body and seeing through his eyes.

"Look at his favorite dog in the whole world," she continued. "Look to see what the dog looks like, what color, what size and what breed."

After a few minutes of silence with every eye in the room on the fidgety Stanley, he slowly began to settle down—although not until he had attempted to eat Kinkade's blouse.

Kinkade began, "How many of you got a white dog?" A general murmur of agreement came from the audience and lots of hands were raised.

"And how about breed?" Audience members shouted out a jumble of phrases such as "I saw a little white Scotty," "something curly, fluffy," "busy, bouncing around."

Then Kinkade related her thoughts. "When I first said 'favorite,' I heard the words 'black and white' and then I said, 'well show me this dog.'

"I saw a little, white, long-haired fluff budget. A Scotty-type female, and oh! she's busy!" she exclaimed. "Busy, busy, busy! She's smaller than him and is kind of chubby, very round and very, very busy."

Standing on stage with my skeptical fiancé, I took the microphone offered to me and excitedly announced that his favorite dog could indeed be Abby, a little, white, fluffy, super-high-energy female Bichon frise that had once lived next door.

There is a low wire fence between our yard and the neighbors and Abby and Stanley played together, nose to nose through the mesh, every day of his life from when he was 8 weeks old to the day they moved away, in October of last year.

"I got that it was a memory," explained Kinkade. "I got that he missed her. What I was trying to deduce was whether she was still alive. Did anybody pick up that wave of sadness? It comes in with the picture—you get this ache and that's how you know that dog is missing. I got this, 'Oh, I miss her,' and I asked 'Is she alive?' And I got, 'She's just not there anymore'."

Kinkade turned to me and said, "I also get that he really, really wants a girlfriend."

Up to this point, I had been quite impressed by the responses the audience and Kinkade were giving, but I hadn't really noticed a change in Stanley. He was still as hyper as ever, constantly trying to eat the flowers on the stage or jump up on Kinkade. But in that moment as Kinkade said "girlfriend," he fixed his big, brown eyes right on me with an intense stare I had never seen before. And suddenly, I could clearly see his thoughts. He was pleading to me, "Mum, I want a girlfriend ... please!"

So, Abby's parents, you know who you are, bring her by for a visit!

For more information about Kinkade's methods, visit or pick up a copy of her book "Straight From the Horse's Mouth: How To Talk to Animals and get Answers."

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