What does Spot want for Valentine’s Day?


Animal communicator Cindy Smith gives rescue dog Buddy a belly rub for Valentine’s Day (and every day).

Kisses are fleeting, but an animal's love lasts. Whether or not you have a partner to whisk you off your feet this Valentine's Day, you may have a pet at home just waiting to steal your heart. You can't shower your dog with chocolate and roses, but you can give him something special during this season of love: cosmic communication.

"I think the heart aspect of animals is what hooks us all," says animal communicator Cindy Smith. Smith spends her days listening to the secret desires of dogs, cats and horses. She’s a professional animal communicator who looks into our pets' minds to translate their thoughts and emotions into words we can understand.

Pet owners call Smith when they need advice on how to keep their dog from running away, or to find out what's ailing an aloof cat. Owners hold the phone as Smith telepathically speaks to the animal, who may be by the owner's side in Asheville or as far away as Korea. She uses her training in meditation to put the animal in a trance-like state, in order to read the pet's thoughts through images and feelings. Smith tells the owner how the animal is feeling, and gives the pet an opportunity to ask its owner questions.

Smith is one of several animal communicators in the Asheville area who specialize in deciphering what animals are thinking, most often to solve behavioral or health issues. During a phone appointment, Smith hones in on the images in an animal’s mind to get answers to complicated problems. But you don't need a professional to foster a direct line to your dog's heart. All it takes is a little concentration and an open mind.

As our thoughts turn to love, romantic and otherwise, Smith encourages owners to take a moment to tell their animals how they feel. Putting an image in your mind and concentrating on your feelings can help break the language barrier. "If you compliment them on something they're already offering, they will build on that,” she says. “It reinforces them and it also lets them know that you're getting the message that they love you." Smith suggests recognizing a specific behavior, like how much you appreciate when your dog greets you at the door, so you can give a concrete example of the love you feel. 

So what should be on your pet's itinerary this Valentine's Day? Take your dog for a hike, followed by a good belly rub. Feed your cat a healthy treat and gently stroke her head. If you're lucky enough to have a horse, saddle him up and go for a trail ride.

Most importantly, Smith suggests making a special effort to appreciate all your animal does for you throughout the year. "Animals would love to be recognized for the Herculean efforts they make day after day to make us happy, take care of us, keep us safe,” she says. So skip the chocolate and give your pet what it really wants: a devoted owner who listens.

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