Are people who own dogs happier? What a silly question! Of course they are! Pretty much any devoted dog lover would answer yes to this question. Dogs remind us to play, have fun, laugh, and not take ourselves too seriously. According to a study comparing happiness in pet owners versus non-pet owners done by Allen R. McConnell, PhD, of Miami University in Ohio, "Pet owners had greater self-esteem, were more physically fit, tended to be less lonely, were more conscientious, were more extraverted, tended to be less fearful and tended to be less preoccupied than non-owners." Happiness is not the easiest feeling to define, but one look at my dogs playing in the snow for the first time and I know exactly what it means. Happiness is pure joy. Happiness is a wag of the tail. Happiness is enjoying every moment of our existence. How lucky we are to be alive! To feel snowflakes in our fur and on our noses? Dogs are so happy to roll around in mud, bounce into snow drifts, chase after falling snow and taste the cool white fluff that surrounds them. I'm happy right now too! Dogs have been teaching me that there is happiness in every moment. One of my clients has a sign hanging up in her house that says, "Happiness is not a destination, it's a way of life." Training dogs is a way of life that fascinates me, makes me beyond happy, and teaches me that every moment counts. Oftentimes, dogs never know what their destination is and yet they always seem to be happy. My boyfriend Matt and I decided to go on a working vacation to Telluride, Colorado and of course we had to bring our dogs Daisy and Taj. This meant that we had to drive 16 hours to get here, but it is well worth it to experience this enchanting, happy place with our two best friends. Daisy and Taj most likely had no idea that we were taking them to a doggy paradise, but they were happy the whole way here and then they were extra happy when we finally got here. Dogs are allowed off-leash in Telluride as long as they are under voice command, and my dogs have never been happier. Yesterday we went on a hike up to a half frozen waterfall and the day before we went walking along the river. Even though it's ice cold, Daisy and Taj were more than happy to jump in. I was really happy when we passed by a porcupine and they didn't seem to notice. That could have caused momentary unhappiness for them with snouts full of quills. Daisy's tail hasn't stopped wagging in happiness since we arrived here and Taj seems to never stop smiling. I haven't stopped smiling either. To see my dogs happy and to be in such a happy, peaceful place is happiness. Dogs bring so much joy to our lives because we have another living creature to share our experiences with that allow us to see beyond ourselves. Dogs remind us to stop, smell, see, hear and accept moments that we would've otherwise missed. They allow us to experience a way of life that is playful, energetic, compassionate, loving and happy. For this reason, I'm very grateful that my dogs teach me to be happy everyday.