Friday, January 30, 2009

Barking Buddha Dog of the Week....Partner!

Partner the Plush Puppy!

This week's dog is once again a puppy.
Partner is 9 weeks old and lives in Atlanta, Ga.
He's a coon hound and belongs to my friend and doga enthusiast, Holly.
Check out those wrinkles and jowls! Who can resist them! Partner is working on his outdoor peeing and not jumping up on his humans. Honey and Gus would like to let Partner know that he'll figure it out soon enough.
Thanks for the cute pics Holly!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Barking Buddha Doga Tip of the Week

The world has seemed a little unsettled lately, so much fear and panic. So much change. The economy, the government, the energy of the earth and it's inhabitants have come to a challenge and a call to stand strong and courageously.

It's important not to allow the fear of others be your fear. Stay grounded. Love, live, play, be grateful. Your dog can help you with these things. Begin by using this simple Barking Buddha Doga meditation:

Sit quietly with your dog. Place your hands on your dogi and allow your heart to open with feelings of love and gratitude. Fear is the absence of love. Let your dog help you feel love by first connecting to the love you have for her or him. Let these feeling s wash over you. If panic or fear arises, let it move through you by using the mantra " breathe in love, breath out fear". Continue to connect to the love you have for your dog as you change your mantra to "breathe in courage, breathe out fear". Feel deeply and honestly from the heart. Whatever happens you have this wonderful fur being right by your side. Continue to allow these feelings to wash over and through you until the fear and panic subsides. Now think of five things you are grateful for and feel the gratitude from your heart. Thank your dogi for her assistance in your clearing of fear and go out and play...don't forget a treat for your dog and also remember... The world is a beautiful place made more beautiful by the love we share with the people and animals around us. There is always posibility, there is always love, and your dog is here to help you remember those things.
Brenda, Gus and Honey

Monday, January 26, 2009

Yoga's Gone to the Dogs. Article in The Bellevue Reporter

Barking Buddha Doga instructor Brenda Bryan and her sidekick, Gus, demonstrate the ‘Flying Dog’ pose.
Lindsay Larin/Bellevue Reporter

Yoga's gone to the dogs
By LINDSAY LARINBellevue Reporter Staff Writer Jan 23 2009, 1:00 AM
Gus and Honey sit perched on a yoga mat, ready to begin a DOGA class. The four-legged companions of yoga instructor and massage therapist Brenda Bryan have quickly become pros at mastering poses like the Wheel Barrel and the Super Dog pose.
Bryan and her two furry friends teach Barking Buddha Doga, a traditional form of free flowing yoga for dogs and their owners.
Classes are taught at the Seattle-King County Humane Society in Bellevue, at the Twilight Artist Collective Gallery in West Seattle and at Downtown Dog Lounge in Capital Hill.
The concept of yoga for dogs came to Bryan two years ago while she was massaging "models" prior to a runway show. The models strutting their stuff just happened to be dogs as part of a Seattle Humane Society fashion show event that took place on Fourth Avenue in front of Hotel Monaco in Seattle.
"The massage helped to calm the dogs prior to the show and helped them relax in the midst of all the chaos," Bryan explained. "I love supporting Seattle Humane Society's causes. They are a wonderful organization."
While chatting with a representative from the Seattle Humane Society following the fashion show, the idea of combining massage and yoga practices with dogs came about.
"The representative asked if I would be willing to teach some classes at the Humane Society in Bellevue and I said yes right away," she said. "I mean, what a wonderful idea. For years, I had to shoo my dogs off my yoga mats when I practiced at home, now they would be joining in."
She began slowly, by rolling out the yoga mat and practicing different moves with her pups while using massage techniques to sooth and calm them.
"It only took a short time for Gus and Honey to get a handle on it," she laughed. "Now they hog the yoga mat."
Bryan adopted Gus, a small-mix breed, from a shelter in Blaine. Gus is now six years old and eager to help demonstrate his best Doga moves. Eleven-year-old Honey is 1/2 Boxer, 1/2 Shar Pei, which Bryan describes as a little wrinkly, a lot sweet. Both dogs act right at home on the yoga mat.
Doga welcomes dogs of all sizes, ages and breeds. Each class typically runs 45 minutes to an hour and covers a brief play time, various poses, massage techniques and meditation.
"In my current series at the Humane Society I have a four-month-old puppy, a 14-year-old dog with arthritis, and everything in between," Bryan explained, who said each class consists of roughly four to six students and their dogs.
She begins each class with a run-around play time to help the dogs get aquatinted with one another and the space.
Little research has been done to determine the benefits of yoga and dogs, but Bryan remains confident in the practice.
For weeks, Bryan's dog Honey was chewing on the skin above her hips. Bryan assumed it was some type of allergic reaction or a case of sensitive skin that is often found in the Shar Pei breed.
Finally it dawned on Bryan to try massaging Honey's lower back and hips to ease any discomfort or pain due to her old age. She massaged Honey's lower back and led her through a few gentle poses. Honey stopped chewing at her skin and has since appeared to be feeling better, said Bryan.
"Doga benefits dogs just like it benefits people. They benefit from the stretching and massage and lets the owner connect with their dog in a very focused manner," she explained. "My theory on dogs is that they open us up to a deeper level of emotions that we can use as a catalyst for a true connection to ourselves and others."
Bryan encourages dog owners to practice Doga poses and meditation practices at home on a regular basis. A Doga guide called Barking Buddha: Simple Soul Stretches for Yogi and Dogi, written by Brenda Bryan will hit bookstores in May and is currently available for pre-sale on
"You can do a little bit of Doga every day and the dogs will love the attention," Bryan explained. "We certainly spend a lot of time with our dogs, but we are usually busy doing other things. It becomes more meaningful if you take the time out to focus on them and there needs."
For more information on Barking Buddha Doga check out Brenda's blog at
Upcoming Class:
Barking Buddha Doga - relaxing the world one dog at a time
Jan.7-21, 7 p.m., three-week series. Humane Society, Bellevue.
Lindsay Larin can be reached at or at 425.453.4602.
Bellevue Reporter Staff Writer Lindsay Larin can be reached at or 425-453-4602.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Barking Buddha Dog of the Week: Bolshoi!

This week's dog is actually a puppy, our youngest dogi ever at just 4 months! Bolshoi is a Shepherd, Shar Pei, ect. mix.

Here he is pictured with his human, Anna and above with some friends from doga class (Snickers, Mia, Honey).

I think Bolshoi looks very adult in the picture with his friends and for such a young guy he was really well behaved in class.

Very bright, a quick learner and a lovely disposition. For now he's light enough for many of the small dog modifications in the doga poses but we'll have to adjust those to big dog poses as he is growing larger by the minute. Such a pleasure to have in the Seattle Humane Society Doga Series. Thanks Bolshoi, I'm looking forward to watching you grow into a full size dogi!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Doga Class

Wait for it...
Yes! Treats!
Wednesday night at The Seattle Humane Society

Call to Action! Dogs Need Your Donations in Everett

Officers raid puppy mill, 'astounded' by filth
One of the rescued dogs peers from his new cage at the Everett animal shelter.

Story Published: Jan 18, 2009 at 1:29 PM PST
Story Updated: Jan 19, 2009 at 7:13 AM PST
By KOMO Staff
Watch the story
Warning: Story contains graphic material.
GOLD BAR, Wash. - Officers rescued 155 dogs and several other animals found living under ghastly conditions in a puppy mill operation so horrific that it shocked even veteran animal control officers, officials said. A citizen's tip led officials to the residence, in the 43000 block of May Creek Rd in Gold Bar.
Photo shows exterior of the residence where the puppy mill operation was found.After obtaining a search warrant, deputies and officers raided the property, where they found many of the dogs stuffed inside small crates and pens overflowing with urine and feces, investigators said. Several dead puppies also were found in a freezer, and two dead dogs were found elsewhere on the premises. Eighty-seven of the dogs were living in a converted attic.
Adult dogs and puppies were found living in crates and small pens filled with large accumulations of feces and heavily soiled shavings, said Vicki Lubrin of Snohomish County Animal Control Services.
Officers said the odor from the feces and urine was so overpowering it could be detected well outside the residence. A large commercial dumpster stood in the yard overflowing with dog waste.
Medications and used syringes, used to treat sick animals, were found scattered in front of pens and in a refrigerator.
Most of the dogs were heavily matted, covered with their own feces and saturated with urine. Investigators said many dogs had open sores on various parts of their bodies and all were covered with fleas. Several dogs had tumors and other abnormal body conditions.
Officers found a variety of small breed dogs: Yorkshire terriers, rat terriers, West Highland terriers, Chinese crested, pugs, dachshunds, Pekingese and mixed breeds sold as "designer dogs."
Also found were six large dogs - a Labrador and Doberman tightly squeezed together in one crate, a Rottweiler, a mastiff and two boxers.
Altogether, officials found 155 dogs, four cats and three parrots - all living in inhumane conditions.
"Even the most experienced officers on site were astounded by the size of this puppy mill operation and the filthy conditions in which the dogs were kept," Lubrin said in a statement.
She said a detailed breeding plan was found posted on a wall inside the residence.
Lubrin said puppy mill puppies are often sold to unsuspecting buyers with hereditary defects, chronic illnesses and disease. The females are bred over and over again, producing litter after litter of puppies until they either die or can no longer breed and are disposed of.
The facility was operating in violation of Snohomish County commercial kennel regulations, Lubrin said.
All of the animals were removed for care and feeding and a veterinary medical assessment. The dogs, cats and birds are being cared for at the Everett Animal Shelter.
The final disposition of the animals is not known at this time, Lubrin said. The investigation continues and will be referred to the Snohomish County Prosecutor's Office for review. No arrests have been made at this time.
The rescue operation was a joint effort by Snohomish County Animal Control Services and Snohomish County sheriff's deputies on Friday night.
Lubrin said the cost of seizing and treating the animals rescued from these conditions severely impacts the budgets of all responding agencies.
She said anyone wishing to donate dog food or money for medical expenses to the Everett Animal Shelter's nonprofit agency, ARF (Animal Rescue Foundation), may do so by calling 425-257-6000 or coming to the shelter in person at 2732 36th St., Everett.

Please do what you can to help.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009


A man brings his dog to be blessed at the San Anton church during the feast of St. Anthony, Spain's patron saint of animals, in Madrid, Saturday, Jan. 17, 2009. The feast is celebrated each year in many parts of Spain and people bring their pets to churches to be blessed. (AP Photo/Paul White) Just came across this on the 'net. to be exact. Quite the fashionable outfit, those European dogs really know how to work a scarf.

Gus received a blessing from a Franciscan monk at The Seattle Humane Society "Walk for the Animals". Very nice to bless the beasties. I think though that we are blessed just having them in our lives.

Here's the Feb. Barking Buddha Doga class Schedule:

Sat. 2/7 Downtown Dog Lounge, Capital Hill 1:00

Sun. 2/8 Twilight Artist Collective Gallery West Seattle Junction 5:00

Thurs. 2/26 The Seattle Humane Society Bellevue 7:00

Let me know if you have any questions.


B, G & H

Monday, January 19, 2009

soul puppy

I always make a playlist to listen to when I'm working on a writing project. I find if I turn on the same playlist everytime it gets me in the mindset I need to continue a project, kinda like Pavlov's dogs. I hear the music, I write. Here's the playlist for the new book I'm starting. This playlist is called Soul Puppy. The playlist for my current book (which will be released in May) is called Procrastination. Enjoy the tunes (I can't be held responsible if you get up and dance)!

soul puppy: "1. Get Up (I Feel Like Being A) Sex Machine, Pt. 1 - James Brown
2. If Anybody Gets Funked Up (It's Gonna Be You) - George Clinton
3. Mercy - Duffy
4. Teenage Kicks - Gene Drayton
5. Beggin' (Original Version) - Madcon
6. Tighten Up - Bamboos
7. Can I Get A Witness - Dusty Springfield
8. Peace Love Not War (K Dope Mix) - Johnny King
9. Memphis Soul Stew (Single/LP Version) - King Curtis
10. Chain Of Fools - Aretha Franklin
11. Tighten Up - Archie Bell & the Drells
12. Snatching It Back - Clarence Carter
13. Tramp - Otis Redding & Carla Thomas
14. Walking The Dog - Rufus Thomas
15. Hold On, I'm Coming (LP/Single Version) - Sam and Dave
16. I Can't Stop Dancing - Archie Bell & the Drells
17. Can You Monkey Do The Dog - Rufus Thomas
18. Just Dropped In (To See What Condition My Condition Was In) - Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings
19. Detroit City Soul - The Thrillers
20. Superdance - Jackie Lee
21. Sock Some Love Power To Me - Lee Rogers
22. 100 Days, 100 Nights - Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings"

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Barking Buddha Doga Tip of the Week: Sacrum Release

This week's tip came about because of my dog, Honey's skin condition. She's 1/2 Shar Pei and 1/2 Boxer so her skin can be sensitive because of the Shar Pei. I typically know what she's having an allergic reaction to, but I was stumped.
She was doing the typical things she does when she 's having an allergic reaction, gnawing her hips, butt and tail. I went through the usual list; wheat? no. flea eggs? no. soy? no. beef? no.
Finally through an enlightening conversation with a friend we figured out that her low back/sacrum could be bothering her and just like we would administer self-massage to a sore neck or low back she was chewing on her low back to try to relieve her discomfort.

So this is what I did to release her sacrum:

-Place both hands on your dog's low back, the sacrum is the large, flattish bone at the base of the spine before the tail.

-If you can feel it gently hook your fingers on either side of the sacrum if not just place your hands in the general area (remember intention is everything). Gently wiggle your hands forward and back as you massage the sacrum with your thumbs. If this is too much for your dogi a loving hip massage could be nice.

- It should only take a couple of minutes, dogs seem to respond very quickly to healing work so don't over do it.

- Move the work to the entire hip, by making gentle circles using your entire hand on the hip area, then brush your hands down the legs.

-Smile at your dogi (they love being smiled at) and give her a treat.

The good news is, I did this a couple of times and she stopped chewing. Let me know if this works for you.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Barking Buddha Doga News

Hello Yogis and Dogis!

Here's some recent happenings:

Handsome Harry officially turned 14 on Saturday! Happy Birthday Harry!

Mickey Rourke thanks his dogs during his Golden Globes acceptance speech. Aawww, so sweet!Click on the link below to hear it:

Barking Buddha Doga tonight at The Seattle Humane Society 7:00.

Obama is deciding between a Labradoodle and a Portugese Water Dog to join his family. Click on the link from Bark Magazine to see the video and read the article:

Have a fabulous day!

Hugs and Wags,

Brenda, Gus and Honey

Monday, January 12, 2009

Barking Buddha Dog of the Week: Zuri!

Zuri with her mom,Linda.

Last week's BBDOTW this week.

Zuri is a 2 year old German Shepherd. She's one of my most faithful dogis, who attends almost every class no matter where it's held. Although for some reason she tends to favor the Downtown Dog Lounge even though it's the noisiest and most distracting venue.

Zuri's mom calls her "wild and crazy" and Zuri has had a few wild and crazy moments in class and has exhibited a little protective behaviour over her beloved doga mat. But I've watched her demeanor mellow quite a bit as she continues to come to classes. Linda has also noticed positive changes in Zuri since attending doga. Hurray! Doga is so new I'm thrilled to begin to hear from regular students about the benefits and lasting effects of the practice.
Anyway our Zuri LOVES the beach, long walks, candle lit dinners....I kid, I kid... but she does like the beach, long walks and also coming to doga.
Thanks Zuri for being such a devoted dogi! See you at the next class!

Thursday, January 8, 2009


Here's a cute video sent to me this morning about a dog and an elephant who are best friends:

Wish me luck shooting the promo video today!

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Today's Doga

I'm happy about tonight's doga class at The Seattle Humane Society. I'll look forward to seeing regular yogis and dogis as well as meeting new ones. I MUST remember to bring a camera!

Monday I met with my book editor and I'm excited to say the book is about ready to go to final printing. It's been a fun learning process. The book is very accessible to new and seasoned yogis alike.

Tomorrow we're shooting a promo video to send out along with the press packs. Stuff like that is really fun because I ask my friends and regular students to participate and it's usually pretty laid back. I don't get nervous doing things like that since I was once told that everyone is looking at the dogs not the people. It's my version of picturing an audience in their underwear to stave off nerves. I tell myself that everyone is looking at the dogs and not me. So far it's worked out well.

I'll be posting the Tip of the Week and The Dog of the Week on Friday and into the weekend.

Also...don't forget in addition to the class tonight at 7:00, I have a class at Downtown Dog Lounge this Sat. at 1:00 and On Sunday at 5:00 at The Twilight Artists Collective gallery in West Seattle.



Sunday, January 4, 2009

Can Dogs Evolve Spiritually?

We dog-sat a friend's dog over the holiday season. Quinby, also lovingly known as Stinker, is a 40 pound Spaniel. Nine years old with a lot of puppy energy. Good with other dogs and all people, very easy to be around. And although this description almost sounds like I'm trying to find her a good home or a date, it's actually leading into something I've been thinking about.

Quinby is really easy, but not always really focused. Her learning seems to be more instinctive and less focused or decisive. And even though all dogs are loaded with instinct, I've noticed a look in the eyes of certain canines. It's focus, the little wheels are turning trying to figure it all out, watching very closely. And then dogs like Stinker just flit about and do what will get them the treat or the praise. I'm not saying that one kind of dog is better than the other, it's just a different kind of personality and doggy energy.

While almost every dog wants to do what it takes to get the treat, some dogs appear to be more in tune with the situation. This doesn't mean they are any less heart openers or healing forces than their more focused furry friends. All dogs are these things. Again, maybe it just means they're on a different energetic vibration.

The focused dogs seem to tune in more intently to the human vibration and more easily. I think dogs can learn to focus in on this kind of energy as we work with them and grow with them on an energetic and spiritual level. Which means dogs may be able to evolve spiritually like humans but in their own dog way. Spending time doing activities with our dogs that require complete attention and/or intention like training, meditation or doga can help you and your dog evolve into more focused beings. As you gain more of an ability to really tune in to each other and your surroundings, perhaps together you can evolve as you walk down your own path toward increased spiritual awareness.
I've really been thinking a lot about the spiritual evolution and energetic vibration of dogs and humans so don't be surprised if I write about this again this coming week. Happy Sunday.
Brenda, Honey and Gus

Friday, January 2, 2009

Barking Buddha Dog of The Week...Happy B-day Tonto!

Tonto with his new BFF, Snickers.
Jen said Tonto has been getting used to this much colder climate with the help of a new sweater.

Tonto is our dog of the week. It was Tonto's birthday yesterday, he's one. Tonto is a dog from Bangok and was rescued by SCAD Please visit the link to find out more about the rescue efforts of SCAD.
Tonto is currently being fostered in Seattle by Snickers and his mom, Jen. For those of you following this blog, you may be familar with the big in size and heart dogi... Snickers.
Happy New Year and Happy Birthday Tonto!