Downward-Facing Dogs – and Humans!

Yoga with your dog? Is that really a thing?

As a matter of fact, yes! “Doga” (dog + yoga) is just that – practicing yoga with your dog. When you practice yoga, part of what you’re learning is how to be present, to be “in the moment” with thinking about the past or worrying about the future. For our dogs, this is their natural mindset – so practicing yoga with them can help and remind us to live in the here and now.

Intrigued? If so, we hope you can join us on Sunday, August 24th at 10:30AM for a chance to try doga for yourself! We’ll be on the Greens at Westfield UTC – the putting green near Lululemon Athletica, in the upper level of the Nordstrom wing.

Certified dog trainer Zoe Stathis will introduce everyone to doga and some etiquette guidelines. She’ll be assisting throughout the class to make sure everyone – humans and dogs – are having a fun and safe experience.

me and guapo sittingCertified yoga instructor and dog-lover Alyssa Runyan, along with doga enthusiast and registered therapy dog Guapo the Chihuahua, will lead us through a basic yoga sequence that’s designed to connect with our dogs using touch, breath, and voice. With Alyssa’s guidance, we’ll practice tangible ways to bring more joy into each moment. Not a yogi? Don’t worry – the poses will be very gentle and beginner-friendly!

After everyone’s stretched out and feeling blissful, Zoe will give a short demo on how to teach your dog the common “downward dog” yoga pose (which many dogs seem to know instinctively – where do you think they got the name?). There will be treats for everyone at the end!

To participate, please bring your dog (of course!) on a NON-retractable leash, a yoga mat or large beach towel, and a small bag of treats.

Second Chance volunteers will be on hand to collect donations during the event – we welcome cash donations or items from our wish list:

  • Dog beds, pillows, towels, and small rugs
  • Dog bowls
  • Kibble and canned dog food!
  • Dog toys (Nylabones, kongs, teething toys especially!)
  • Leashes, collars, and harnesses (all sizes)
  • Puppy pee pads
  • Nature’s Miracle cleaning products

About Alyssa, Guapo, and Zoe: Alyssa was an RVT (animal nurse) for five years, and she’s been teaching yoga for the past four years. She’s the studio manager at Sol Yoga in La Jolla. Guapo the Yoga Beast is a therapy dog (registered with TDI). He and Alyssa volunteer as a therapy dog team at the UCSD Medical Center. Zoe is a certified dog trainer with Pawtopia and has taught everything from potty training to correcting severe aggression. She’s trained Alyssa and Guapo in their therapy work.

Come see how fun, relaxing, and rewarding it can be to practice yoga with your dog!

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