Doing Life Together

Doing Life Together

What? My Dog Needs a Flu Shot?

posted by Linda Mintle

I have an adorable four-year-old black miniature poodle. There are times I have to travel and need to take her to doggie day care. We actually have a really great place to board her for a day. But here is the problem. Now, the boarding places are requiring a canine flu shot in order to board.

OK, I know my 90-year-old dad needs a flu shot, but my dog?  I am reluctant. She just had a rabies shot and still has a big knot on her shoulder that hasn’t completely healed.

So I asked my vet. She said there is no canine flu outbreak in our area, but if I want to board my pet, many places are now requiring the shot.

According to the CDC, dog flu is “a contagious respiratory disease in dogs caused by a specific Type A influenza virus referred to as a “canine influenza virus.” This is a disease of dogs, not of humans.” The virus was first observed in horses and has now spread to dogs. It is highly contagious and spreading rapidly in some parts of the country. Symptoms include cough, runny nose, and fever. A small percentage of dogs can develop severe disease, but very few dogs actually die from the virus.

The American Veterinary Medical Association recommends the vaccine if your dog is in frequent contact with other dogs. Dogs at risk are those that board, go to day care, shelters or travel. People who handle an infected dog can transmit the virus to another dog, but the virus does not transmit from dog to people.

The vaccine is given in a pair of shots weeks apart. Each shot is anywhere from $25.00 to $50.00 and there is no local drug store offering them for free or at a discount.

So to vaccinate or not? That is the question. The decision should probably take into account where you live (is there an outbreak) and how much your dog interacts with other dogs.

For me, I am forgoing the vaccine. Not convinced my dog needs it or that it is good to pump her full of a number of vaccines. This does mean, however, that I have to be created with my dog care!

What will you do?

A Thanksgiving Exercise for Your Family

posted by Linda Mintle

If you have children, you want them to be thankful and not take the blessings of this life for granted. One mom writes and asks how to help her children be thankful this Thanksgiving season. Try these two family activities,

Q: This holiday season my husband and I want to focus on things we are thankful for but it seems our children just take everything for granted. They are so focused on getting what they want based on what they see on TV and in the stores. We would like to change that and take their attention away from material things and put it on to more important things. Any suggestions?

A: First of all, I applaud you for being aware of this issue. You are talking about creating a thankful heart or an attitude of gratitude in a child. This is something you must teach in our culture as media promotes getting rather than giving. Consider the ads you see and hear. Many of them begin with the phrase, “You deserve…” This promulgates an attitude of entitlement. Kids are taught to want more, rather than be content with what they have. Thus, parents have to constantly go against these messages, teaching as scripture admonishes to be content with much or little.

Fortunately, you have the Thanksgiving season to jump start your quest to be more thankful. Here is an idea for your family. Make a gratitude box out of an old shoe box. Decorate the box with the kids and cut a slit in the top. Every day from now until Thanksgiving, have each person in the family write down something he/she is thankful for and put it in the box. At your Thanksgiving celebration, read the notes out loud. After Thanksgiving, you can change the box decorations for each season or holiday and continue the activity once a week instead of daily. An activity like this will intentionally foster gratitude.

Another idea is this: When you say your prayers at night, have each person in the family go around the circle and say something that they are thankful for that day. Your children may initial choose material things but will gradually focus on things of eternal value as you and your husband model those responses.

Feel free to post your ideas as to how to help our children be more thankful.

Can You Pass the Anger Quiz?

posted by Linda Mintle

Anger is a misunderstood emotion. Take the 10 question anger quiz to see how well you understand anger:

T     F    1.  As long as I don’t look or sound angry, I am not angry.

T     F     2. If I ignore anger long enough, it will go away.

T     F     3. If I punch or throw something, my anger will decrease.

T     F     4. Anger is shameful and not nice.

T    F     5. It’s OK to keep the peace at any price. That is what God wants.

T    F     6. If I express anger, my relationships will be in danger.

T    F     7. Women don’t get angry, just frustrated.

T    F     8. Christian should not get angry.

T    F     9. God knows that sometimes I just can’t control my anger.

T    F    10. As long as I didn’t mean to get so angry, it is not a problem.

 

 

The correct answer to all the questions is FALSE and here is why:

1. Anger is something you carry inside of you. Not showing it doesn’t mean you don’t have it.People can carry unresolved anger for years and it shows up in other ways like physical issues, irritability, etc.

2. Anger is an emotion to work on and contain. It doesn’t magically go away. You can be angry but the Bible says not to sin.

3. These actions actually increase anger.

4. Anger is a God given emotion that Jesus experienced. It is how we handle anger that matters.

5. God wants us to go to one another and work through our difficulties in love and in gentleness.

6. Relationships are often in danger because of unexpressed anger. When anger is internalized, it can lead to eating disorders, anxiety and depression. The WAY you express anger needs to follow biblical guidelines.

7. Ever heard the saying, “A woman scorned…?”

8. This is nonsense. Simply look at the biblical examples of people who expressed anger.

9. God gives you what you need to control your anger–the Holy Spirit operates in you and gives you the power to overcome. No excuses.

10. Intention does not excuse hurting people. If your anger is out of control and you didn’t mean it, get it under control and ask for forgiveness. Repent but change.

For more help with Anger, Click on the right More Books From Dr. Linda–Breaking Free from Anger and Unforgiveness.

5 Reasons We Hang on to Worry

posted by Linda Mintle

Last night I caught myself beginning to worry about something in the near future. I had to stop and do what I know to do. Worry is a mental habit that needs to broken. My new book, Letting Go of Worry, offers practical steps to stop this bad habit.

But why do we worry when we know this is not part of God’s plan? The answer is the same for any dysfunctional behavior that we hang on to and do not release. It serves a purpose or we wouldn’t do it.

Here are a five reasons why we hold on to worry even though none of these reasons are really true. We falsely believe worry…

1) Stops bad things from happening—Worry has no impact on what happens in our lives. It doesn’t stop anything.

2) Prepares us for the worst outcomes-85% of the time what we worry about doesn’t come true so this is a lot of wasted energy.

3) Allows us to control external events- This isn’t possible. We can’t worry things into happening.

4) Is a way to show we care-Find another way that isn’t anti biblical teaching!

5) Feels like we are doing something -All we are doing is creating stress on our physical body and engaging in a behavior Jesus told us not to do.

Worry does none of these five things. Rather, worry takes a toll on our physical, emotional, relational and spiritual lives. Worry strangles (the literal meaning of the word) the joy out of life. Worry also interferes with our spiritual lives because it is based on doubting God. In order to worry, we have to give up trust and wonder if God is who He says He is. When trouble comes and we don’t understand, the temptation is to ascribe to God some negative motive like, He doesn’t care, He isn’t with me, or He caused the bad thing to happen.

So the first step of letting go worry is to give up the idea that worry is useful. When we truly believe that worry has no place in our lives, this is the beginning of freedom.

 

You may also like,

What to Do With Worried Thoughts

 

For more practical help on letting go of worry, click on the book cover at the right.

This is a mental habit that can be broken. Join me and countless others who have decided to let go of worry and walk in God’s peace and contentment. Let me know how you are doing!

 

 

 

 

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