Home
Guest Posts
Print|Email|Text Size: ||
Barking Buddha
Stretch and connect with your dog through yoga.
Brenda Bryan and Gus practice Floating Dog.

Last week, I attended a book signing for Barking Buddha: Simple Soul Stretches for Yogi and Dogi. I was thrilled to pick up my own copy of the hot-of-the-presses guidebook by home-town yogini and massage therapist Brenda Bryan (with photos by my friend Bev Sparks). I swear this was before I learned the book includes a little profile shot of my dog Lulu in one of Bryan’s classes. Just look for the black dog who exudes not an iota of the serene grace of the Afghan Hound on the neighboring mat. That’s Lulu. The photo is not a case of bad timing but a true reflection of our experience in the class—we were both of us woefully over-stimulated. But that was our problem.

I was impressed and inspired by Bryan with her dogis—Honey and Gus—and the other novices in the class. All around me dog-human pairs practicing “Floating Dog” and “Woofing Warrior” in a Seattle dog daycare, with lots of barking and romping only yards away, and yet calm pervaded the room. I think Bryan’s addition of massage to the regular regime of breathing, stretching and poses, encourages the dogs into the right frame of mind, at the same time it nurtures connection. The class helped me to appreciate that Doga, as it is sometimes called, provides a very real opportunity for enhancing your dog’s health, your understanding of how his or her body feels and moves, and, maybe most importantly, your bond with each other.

While a class with Bryan or a dog-centric yogi near you is probably the best introduction, Barking Buddha provides a smart, straightforward primer for home practice. If you don't believe me, watch the seriously blissed-out pups in Bryan’s video pitch for the book, below.

Print|Email
Lisa Wogan lives in Seattle and is the author of, most recently, Dog Park Wisdom. lisawogan.com

Photo by Bev Sparks.

CommentsPost a Comment
Please note comments are moderated. After being approved your comment will appear below.
Submitted by Anonymous | July 3 2009 |

Way cool, I would LOVE to do this with my dog. How, I wonder, do you get your dog calm enough to learn to do this?

More From The Bark

More in Guest Posts:
Zoo Baby: Part 3
Pet Loss Research:
App Review: Dog Decoder
Home-Schooling for Dogs Could Be Catching On
Wisdom Has Gone to the Dogs
Pub Dogs
Zoo Baby: Part 2
Rufo's Story
Canine Urination 101: Handstands and Leg Lifts Are Just the Basics
The First Canine Laryngectomy