The Meow Dialogues! Learn how to talk to your pets

Updated: Dec 11, 2016, 15:37 IST | Gitanjali Chandrasekharan |

Animal communicator Maia Kincaid, in town for a round of workshops, tells you how to talk back to your pet, and scare the daylight out of ants

Sitting across the table at an Andheri hotel from this writer, Maia Kincaid just takes a few minutes before declaring, "she says she would love to have a second cat in the house. She will hiss at her first of course, but will eventually like to have someone to show the ropes to."

The 'she' here, is the writer's first cat, who is back at home but seems to have connected with Kincaid telepathically. One, who Kincaid says, describes herself as 'elegant and the woman responsible for keeping the house in order'.

Kincaid is a well-known animal communicator based in Sedona, Arizona, who is down in India to help others communicate with nature — animals, insects, trees and plants — as well.

In effect, she says, we are all constantly communicating with our pets. We just need to stop and listen when they talk back.

Maia Kincaid

Kincaid, who has authored the 2010 book, Dogs Say the Darndest Things, Are You Listening?, says those attending her workshops are taught to first listen to themselves. "We must listen to ourselves, ask how am I feeling in my body. Then, simply say, 'hello' to the animal you are speaking to. Notice what you notice," she says. Kincaid, who says she has been communicating with nature all her life but began pursuing it actively 20 years ago, says it's best to start with a pet or animal you are not familiar with so that what you know doesn't cloud what you hear, see, feel. "Celebrate anything you notice, instead of criticizing what you don't," she adds. Her husband, Dev Galoway, adds, "Sometimes, you feel you are imagining it, but once I was around when Maia was speaking to 11 dogs and asked them each a question. In my head I tried listening in to five of those answers, and got all five right." That tele communication can be taught is apparent, when Pune-based Manjiri Latey (a student of Kincaid, who now practises telecommunication), shares the writer's cat's favourite sitting spots in the house.

We ask Kincaid a question that troubles pet parents often. Why do animals run away? "It's hard for humans to understand, but sometimes, animals just want to be away for some time and they see it as an adventure," she says. She talks of a Siamese cat that had once stepped out of its Arizona home. "He had never been outside and didn't even have claws. It was a difficult winter and the owner was convinced that her cat had died. I spoke to the cat and it told me that he was having the time of his life smelling new smells, scratching trees. 'I love my person but I am not ready to come home just yet', he said. He came back home seven weeks later on his own. Was a little thin, but fine otherwise," she adds. She also assures that dogs do understand that their humans have other commitments, and can adjust to schedules. It's the humans who are usually more worried.

Can communication be used to keep the home free of pests? Kincaid and Galoway laugh, but admit they have used it in the past. "Once I was staying at the Galapagos Islands and there were these ants in the house I was living in, who would eat everything I'd bring in. If I left a loaf of bread, they would eat through the plastic and finish the bread by the time I was home," she smiles. On sharing her misery with the locals, she was advised to make soup of the ants, by collecting all the ants she could in a bowl of sugar and then boiling them. "The locals were kidding, of course, but when I went home that night, I put out a bowl of sugar. The next morning, there was not a single ant in it. And, I never saw ants in the house again; they knew I meant business," she smiles and advises us, "perhaps you could try that for your rat problem."

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