LMAC #121: The Magic of Dogs

in Let's Make a Collage6 months ago (edited)

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I took a little hiatus from LMAC collage making this spring. I don't create from my head. My collages are totally intuitive. It was better to give that part of my life a little space for a while. But here I am. As always, this collage is totally intuitive.

Yesterday I spent some time with the family dogs. It was an act of kindness, I thought, to put all my business aside and just sit with the dogs for a couple of hours. My daughter was away and the dogs missed her.

Lo and behold, my kindness to the dogs was actually a kindness to myself. They were a tonic.

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This is our beagle

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This is our shepherd mix

I think if it weren't for the dogs, I wouldn't be writing this blog today. And so it is that in my collage, you see a puppy trying to work its magic.

Do Dogs Have Magic?
It seems to be so, in many cases. According to an article published by the Harvard Medical School, having a dog can 'help calm jagged nerves'. As a matter of fact, petting a dog may lower your blood pressure and heart rate (according to Harvard). This article offers an interesting insight on dogs. In a way, they parallel our own health. If our dog is overweight and sedentary, chances are that is a reflection of our own lifestyle. "People who are overweight and sedentary tend to have dogs that are overweight and sedentary."

The American Kennel Association has its own list of dog ownership benefits (I like to think of it as dog companionship). According to the AKC, dogs can help you live longer. The AKC refers readers to a study published by the American Heart Association. According to that study, which was a meta-analysis of many studies, "Dog ownership is associated with lower risk of death over the long term, which is possibly driven by a reduction in cardiovascular mortality." Quantitatively, there was a 24% reduction in mortality from all causes in people who owned dogs. An impressive number of people were included in the analysis: 3,837,005.

Two More Pictures of the Family Dogs

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The beagle

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The shepherd mix

The AKC refers readers to another study carried out by Washington State University. In this study cortisol levels (levels of cortisol indicate levels of stress) in the saliva of students was measured before and after the students took an important academic test. One group had access to a therapy pet, and the other did not. In the group that had access to a pet (cat or dog) cortisol levels were lower.

A host of other benefits from dog association was listed in the AKC article: less cognitive decline and anxiety in those suffering from dementia; an increase in oxytocin (the 'love hormone') from merely staring in your dog's eyes; dogs help in recovery from (or coping with) PTSD.

Do yourself a favor, if you can, get a dog. If you can't, make friends with someone who has a dog and visit often.

My Collage for LMAC #121

I'll start with @shaka's beautiful template picture:

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Artists and would-be artists are free to imagine whatever they might in this picture. Amazing works of art come in every week in response to the template. Check out this week's gallery so far.

In order to realize my idea for a collage, I tapped the resources in LMAC's Image Library, LIL. There I found a puppy from @muelli, a dog from @brume7, a mushroom from @redheadpei, and a goat from @ddn688. The bare tree I had contributed to LIL some time ago. All images in LIL are public domain. Anyone may borrow and everyone on Hive may contribute. Rules and procedures outlined here.

I also borrowed an image from Pexels: the man on the stone is credited to Abdel Rahman Abu Baker.

I used Paint, Paint 3D and GIMP to manipulate the images, make the frames for the GIF. I also used a Lunapic filter to add just a little bit of atmosphere to the image. Also, I used the paint brushes in GIMP to customize the look of the grass.

If you would like to make a collage, join in. There are prizes for those who win (15!). I don't compete but have been making collages for about two years now.

The contest and the community are successful first of all because of @shaka, who founded and runs LMAC. Then there is a team that helps to keep the machine running. @mballesteros and @quantumg are invaluable.

Hope you enjoyed my little homage to dogs, and I wish everyone who reads this health and peace.

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Hi @agmoore 🤗

As always, it was a joy to read your edu-collage blog, and moreover, very interesting.
Thank you for this wonderful article on the magical value of dogs.

Do yourself a favor, if you can, get a dog.

I wouldn't hesitate to sign this statement myself! 💗

Dogs have given me a lot in life. In over 45 years, I had of course my ups and downs - it was always my dogs that helped me to get rid of my downs again.
Our dear four-legged friends need a walk and a lot of attention and they let us feel their unfiltered gratefulness and loyalty. That alone can release such an enormous boost of energy, even in the darkest times.
Every time I'm in a bad mood and don't really feel a desire to leave the house, nowadays it's Frieda who then forces me to meet the live.

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As you know, I always love your meticulously crafted animations. So, of course, I love this one too. The smooth way the dog runs across the terrain and then lies down next to the master is very well done. Fantastic collage!

Sending you a hug from Germany. 🤗🤗

PS: These are ultra cute dogs. :-)

Thank you for that picture of lovely, lovely Frieda. What a face. So smart and attentive to you.

Thank you for those kind words about my collage. I wanted to show the active comfort dogs bring to us. They are very aware, and they do mirror our personalities. I'm sure you've seen that, over time, a dog patterns itself after the home it lives in.

Thank you for appreciating our sweet dogs. They were rescues, as I remember Frieda was. The dogs complete the family.

Hugs from me and warm affection for your lovely Frieda. Hope we see more of her.

Oh, YES, dogs. My dog is my life

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I love your dog. Thank you for sharing this adorable picture. This baby looks like a real friend.

Thank you for stopping by and for enjoying my 'babies' also.

I haven’t had a dog for years but reading your post makes me want to have one again. 🐶

Peaceful creation on a piece of paradise. Love the movement of the dog.

Thanks my friend for including my image. I see you are enjoying the nice weather with the dogs. 😊

The dogs really are lovely. But you have so many furry friends around you that it seems these might make good substitutes. I have a feeling communicating with a squirrel, a bird, or a cat will also have beneficial effect. Thank you for stopping by and for your lovely comment.
Have the most wonderful spring week, dear @redheadpei :)

🐿 🐱 💕

Hello @agmoore, it's wonderful to be able to see the photos of your puppies, they are really beautiful. I don't have dogs, but I try as much as possible to spend a pleasant time with my neighbors' dogs and with a puppy that visits us at work. In my house the patio is made of concrete and there is a lot of sun there, so I don't dare to have a puppy at home. These days I will publish in the Lmac-LIL gallery some photos of my neighbors' dogs, I hope you like them.
Hugs to you and stay safe

Hello @brume7. I love dog picture you offer. That's the kind of puppy anyone can fall in love with.

I'm glad you have a neighbor to visit and that way you can enjoy the dogs' company. Looking forward to seeing more dog pictures. No doubt I will love them.

Thank you for stopping by and commenting.

Pets are the best gifts to humans, they give you peace even when you are in a solitary state.

Both Shepherd and Beagle posed well haha! Hope you get the winner :)

Hello @coinfactor,
They did pose rather well, didn't they? They are as sweet as they look. And yes, they do give me and everyone else peace.

I appreciate you visit and appreciate that you like these lovely furry friends.

Have a great week!

I really love pets be it dogs, cats or rabbit. Rabbit is damn cute, hope everypone loves them 😃

Have a great week!

You too @agmoore :)

Wonderful ♥️ I hope you get to relax with them often, they are so awesome 🙌

Hello @wrestlingdesires, They are sweet, aren't they? Thank you for stopping by and appreciating these two lovely dogs.

Have a great night.

I wish you a lovely day :)

Hello friend, excellent information from your collage, at home we have a puppy, who is not sedentary since every time I go up the mountain he goes with me and my son, sometimes I leave him at home so that he does not force himself too much. What he says about dogs is very true with regard to high blood pressure, I imagine because of the love that this dog transmits to its owners.

 6 months ago Reveal Comment

Thank you so much! I don't compete. I make collages when I can. Usually they are from the heart--because I have no arts skills. What you see is a piece of me :))
Thank you very much for stopping by and for your great comment.

 6 months ago Reveal Comment

@agmoore! You Are Alive so I just staked 0.1 $ALIVE to your account on behalf of @ddn688. (1/10)

The tip has been paid for by the We Are Alive Tribe through the earnings on @alive.chat, feel free to swing by our daily chat any time you want.