Talk 2 The Animals: Animals and the August 2017 Solar Eclipse

On Monday, August 21, North America will experience a total eclipse of the sun which will cross the continent from coast to coast. For months humans have been amping up for this auspicious event of the moon covering the sun for months by buying eclipse glasses (I have mine, do you have yours yet?), making travel plans and hotel reservations, coordinating eclipse events and parties with friends.

Does An Eclipse Affect Animals?

During the eclipse (depending on where you are in relationship to the eclipse), day becomes night and temperatures drop.

According to Science News, there is evidence that animals change their behavior:

  • In 1544 there were reports that birds ceased singing
  • An account in 1560 said “birds fell to the ground”
  • Crickets and frogs are reported to become vocal
  • Gnats and mosquitoes started swarming
  • Bees returned to their hives
  • Chickens went to roost

While researching I found the eclipse affects domesticated animals less than the animals in the wild. However, if you live in the band of totality, your animal pals may be more affected than if you live outside of that band.

Our animal family may not pay attention to the actual solar eclipse itself, but go about their routines as usual. Where the animals may show anxiety could be around the eclipse inspired events and celebrations, similar to 4th of July celebrations. If you’re worried about that for your animal pals, you might find the workshop “Pets & Fireworks: Not A Winning Combination” helpful. It has ideas on how to help domesticated animals, animals in the wild and farm animals.

Will Your Animal Pal Need Eclipse Glasses?

It’s a hung jury on that – some experts say yes, some say no. Angela Speck, director of astronomy and a professor of astrophysics at the University of Missouri, said at a news conference with NASA on June 21 in Washington, D.C. “On a normal day, your pets don’t try to look at the sun, and therefore don’t damage their eyes.  And on this day, they’re not going to do it, either.” She said about her own cat: “It’s not a concern, letting them [pets] outside,” Speck said. “I’m not going to worry about my cat.”

Be safe and enjoy this propitious event. If your animal pal does something unusual during the eclipse, send me an email, I’d love to hear about it!

Here’s To New Beginnings


from Janet Roper, Animal Communicator & Educator

Talk 2 The Animals: International Cat Day 2017

Happy International Cat Day! How are your cats celebrating this propitious day with you?

According to “International Cat Day is a full 24 hours of recognition and veneration of one of humanity’s oldest and most beloved pets. The festivities were put together for the first time in 2002 by IFAW, the International Fund for Animal Welfare, among other animal rights groups, to celebrate the most popular pet on the planet.”

If your cats are like mine, they are venerated, recognized, spoiled and loved 24/7/365. When I forget to pay appropriate homage, I am (usually) respectfully reminded. I bet you are, too.

To my way of thinking, anytime there’s any kind of celebratory day for any animal, it’s a good time to bear in mind those animals that are living a hard life. Perhaps they have been abused, dumped, forgotten about, ignored, baited, the list goes on.

If you would like to help cats in honor of International Cat Day, here’s a list of organizations that would most probably be purrfectly happy to hear from you:

Here’s To New Beginnings,

Janet Roper

from Janet Roper, Animal Communicator & Educator

Talk 2 The Animals: Self Care When Communicating With Animals

When I was a kid growing up, I couldn’t wait to be an adult and leave kiddom behind. In part because I thought as an adult I’d be able to live an autocratic lifestyle and in part because I wanted to leave distressing childhood experiences and memories behind in kiddom, removing myself from them and their consequences.

Little did I realize those experiences and memories would follow me along into my (nonautocratic) adulthood like ghosts, haunting me and determining who I grew up to be. I did not know at the time that I would need to consciously decide enough was enough and begin the proverbial clearing.

Nor did I realize the amount of work, courage, strength, determination and plain bull-headedness that would be involved in addressing those childhood memories so that I would be able to develop into the adult soul I needed to be in order to communicate respectively and effectively with the animals.

If only it had been as easy as looking at a memory and releasing it to the ether!

The Animals Don’t Ask Us To Make Such Sacrifices

If you grew up in a household where hard work, sacrifice and doing for others was not only expected but highly praised, you probably find yourself thinking you must do the same thing when you are connecting with the animals.

That’s not the case. Carrying that adage too far and sacrificing ourselves, leaving behind valuable safe care practices *for the sake of the animals* becomes counterproductive and even detrimental. It’s not good for us and it’s certainly not good for the animals and the relationship we forge with them. We can find ourselves physically and mentally fatigued, leading to emotions such as overwhelm and anger. The animals don’t ask that of us, why do we put that upon ourselves?

Join The Workshop

On August 30 at 11AM MOUNTAIN, (check your time zone here) I’m presenting an online workshop “Self Care When Communicating With Animals”.

The workshop will cover the importance of setting healthy boundaries and practicing self care when connecting with the animals. I’ll also share some self care practices that have worked well for me throughout the years.

This workshop is a highly interactive experience, a dynamic mixture of lecture, Q&A, participant chat, and making connections with like-minded folks throughout the call. You will leave the workshop having a better understanding of why self care is essential and not a luxury for ‘when I have the time’ as well as some practices you can use yourself.

If you know someone who will benefit from this workshop, please share. Many thanks!

register now button

Here’s To New Beginnings,


from Janet Roper, Animal Communicator & Educator

Talk 2 The Animals: Beginning Animal Communication Conference Call ~ August 2017

What if you could connect with the animals and hear what they have to say?

Each month, usually the last Thursday of the month, I offer a free conference call where I share with you what I have learned in my 20+ years of talking to the animals so that you can do the same.

While there is a standardized format to the call, each call varies because of the different people on the call and the unique questions and energy they bring to the call.

Basically, this is what’s covered:
**Recognize what animal communication is and what it is not
**What a person needs in order to hear the animals
**Develop techniques to quiet your mind

This previous call will give you an idea of what the calls are like.

This call is a highly interactive experience, a dynamic mixture of lecture, Q&A, participant chat, and making connections with like-minded folks throughout the call. You will leave the class with clear steps on how to hear the animals!

Once you are registered, you’ll receive the call-in info. Check your time zone here.

register now button

I hope to see you on the next call!

Here’s To New Beginnings,


from Janet Roper, Animal Communicator & Educator

Talk 2 The Animals: Showing Up For Animals

The other day a friend brought me home from an outing and we noticed a stray dog running through the backyards. The dog was wearing a collar and we tried to get the dog to come to us, but the dog just stayed what s/he considered a safe distance away from us and watched, then eventually turned and trotted away from us.

My friend got in her car and slowly followed the dog and I called Missoula Animal Control and reported the sighting.

An officer came out and searched, but didn’t find the dog. I chatted with him, asking what I should do if I saw the dog again, and he said to give them a call.

Later my friend messaged me and said she thought the dog had gotten home. She noticed that s/he went into a yard and was greeted by another dog, and appeared to be at home.

This got me to thinking about the care of animals and what it means to show up for them.

What Does It Mean To Show Up For Animals?

Yes, I show up for Max and Raven daily – hourly even – to care and nurture them, making sure they have what they need, everything from treats to medical care.

Yet showing up for animals is more than just showing up for my two. It’s being on the lookout for what’s happening to the animals around me AND having a game plan in the back of my mind for what I need to do when I run into a lost or injured animal, those situations that don’t happen to me frequently.

I need to be prepared, I need to educate myself on what to do, how to best help the animal without causing further fear, injury or danger to them.

Often I’ve jokingly said that I’m not in rescue for a reason. That’s only true to a point; it’s more true that I can no longer use the luxury of that excuse to avoid showing up for animals, whether they are domesticated pets or wildlife.

The key point for me is educating myself and being prepared. So I’m going to be doing some research over the next few days, preparing myself for the next time I have that unexpected experience with an animal. I’m going to be talking with rescue folks and rehabbers, learning the basics of what I can do, how I can best help. If that is putting their contact info in my iPhone and calling them, so be it. If it is leaving the baby bird alone and not interfering from my need to help as a good Samaritan, so be it.

What To Do If You Find A Lost Or Injured Animal

I connected with a Facebook friend, Adele Lewis, who also happens to live in Montana. Adele’s diverse background in biology, assisting in veterinary clinics, living with different exotic animals and working as a volunteer wildlife rehabilitator gives her an exceptional perspective in how to show up to help wildlife. You can read about Adele’s life with Are, her python, here. Adele had this to say regarding handling/helping wildlife.:

“I’ve been thinking about this and there is too much to say about actually handling injured or orphaned wildlife. Probably the best plan is to find phone numbers in advance for rescue people in your area. Then call one of them to ask about a specific situation. Where I live, people can get numbers for wildlife rehabilitators through a 911 non-emergency phone call. Animal shelters should also have them. The Emergency Pet clinic on Reserve in Missoula will take injured and orphaned wildlife. Also Brooke Tanner with Wild Skies Raptor Center near Potomac is a great one to call. She works primarily with raptors but will take or re-direct others. Judy Hoy in Stevensville is another experienced wildlife rehabilitator in our area.

“Please remember it is illegal to keep native wildlife, even with the intention of helping them. It also is unfair to the animals because they need knowledgeable people who can help them return to the wild.”

Here are some numbers you may find helpful:

What steps have you taken in preparing yourself so you can show up for the animals? Please share and leave a comment. Your information can help another person help an animal in need.

Here’s To New Beginnings,

Janet Roper

If you enjoyed the above post, you may find these enjoyable:

from Janet Roper, Animal Communicator & Educator

Talk 2 The Animals: The Ants Continue Marching

In my last post I shared about my experiences with the ants that are occupying the kitchen. The adventure continues and it has become quite an engaging and fascinating one, IMO.

My hope was that with a cordial 1:1 conversation with the ants, explaining why they needed to leave and  using a Vinegar/Water/Essential Oil spray everything would be taken care of. The ants would see the logic and reasoning behind my case, be willing to graciously accommodate my request and I’d have my kitchen back.

Easy peasy, right? No such luck.

Life With Ants

Living so closely with the ants, I can’t help but observe them and be reminded of what incredible sentient beings they are.

Their work ethic is astounding. I have watched them go back and forth on the counter, searching for food, finding something and then toting it back to their nest. (I believe the nest is behind the stove, which I have not been able to pull out.) I *thought* the counter was clean, but apparently I was wrong.

The little guys even got into some herbs I’ve been drying and started tearing up the leaves. THAT’S determination.

I’ve witnessed them look at the boundary of cinnamon I’ve sprinkled heavily by the stove, scrutinize that obstacle and work out how to get around it. I am astounded as I observe their problem solving skills – the tenacity and resolve that goes into that is humbling, to say the least.

They solved the cinnamon boundary by going down the cabinet, across the kitchen floor (a good distance from the cinnamon I had sprinkled in front of the stove), climbing up the cabinet on the other side of the stove, crossing back over the stovetop and scurrying down the minuscule space between the stove and cabinet. All of this while carrying food.

In researching, I discovered this from The Incredible Ant:

“The work ethic of the ant can put even the most ambitious person to shame. All day long the ant labors in the hot desert, or a wet rain forest, or the cold tundra sniffing out his food and carrying back his load to the nest no matter how far the journey or how difficult the terrain. Never complaining and never taking a break, the ant works without supervision or direction until the job is done. Talk about a hard worker! You’ve probably heard that the load an ant carries around all day can be up to 50 times his own body weight! That would be the same as a human carrying around a medium sized American truck (7,000 – 10,000 lbs). What about the distance an ant travels? An ant walks all day long, from sun up til sun down, and while ants might not seem to move very fast when compared to us. It’s a whole different story when you put it into perspective. If an ant moves at about 2 inches per second (see: how fast do ants run?). In the course of a 12 hour day, an ant will cover roughly 7,200 feet (approx. 1 1/3 miles!). That may not seem like much, but 7,200 feet is 365,760 times the ant’s body length. For a human to equal that number, he would need to travel 415 miles in 12 hours! To do that you would need to run 34 mph all day long without stopping for a break or slowing down.”

I suppose I could claim entitlement to the kitchen and power over the ants by going out and buying a can of Raid and spraying the bejezus out of them, but I simply don’t have what it takes to do that. I used to be able to do that quite easily and unconsciously, but I can’t do it now.

Coexisting with other sentient beings is about finding creative ways to live and let live. This may sound naive, even foolish to some folks, but the point is using whatever means at hand to kill off the other species should not be the automatic first step we employ. We’re on a learning curve, a ridiculously high learning curve as we try to grasp what it means to coexist with other beneficial species without automatically reaching for the Raid.

The Cleaning Continues

Meanwhile, thanks to the ants in the kitchen, I am well on my way to having the cleanest, most sparkly kitchen in the state of Montana.

I’m going to up the ante with my cleaning routine – undiluted vinegar is my new BFF. The new cleaning regiment includes:

  • Keeping the sink both clean and dry, so they don’t have any water to wash down anything they may have eaten
  • Pouring a little bit of bleach down the drains
  • Graduating up from the using the Vinegar/Water/Essential Oil spray to wipe down the counters to using straight vinegar, as vinegar breaks up the pheromones that ants use to follow each other to sources of food
  • Vacuuming and moping the floor nightly, again using vinegar
  • Garbage is going out nightly, instead of waiting for the garbage bag to be filled
  • Call on some friends to help me move the stove out, as I believe the source is there

Wish me luck on this, and if you have any natural tips to share on corralling ants, please do, that is much appreciated!

Here’s To New Beginnings,


from Janet Roper, Animal Communicator & Educator

Talk 2 The Animals: Do You Have Ants in the House?

Oh good grief. I was cleaning the kitchen the other day and when I grabbed the garbage to take it out, there was a pile of little ants under the sink. A BIG PILE of little ants. While I’ve had ants in my houses at other times in my life, this time it threw me for a loop because I hadn’t seen any evidence of ants in the kitchen before that. So I transported them outside as best I could and have since requested that they stay outside, not come inside.

They’re still appearing, so we’ll be conversing again. Meanwhile, with the help of Google, I learned that a forager ant will go out in search of food. When s/he finds a food source,  the path from the food to the nest is marked using a pheromone trail. Other ants, who smell with their antennae, then follow the path. Certain botanical scents interfere with these scent trails, among them some essential oils and vinegar. Here is the recipe I’ve been using which is definitely helping.

Vinegar Spray Recipe to Remove Ants

1/2 cup water
1/2 cup white or apple cider vinegar
30 drops of sweet orange essential oil (or lemon or grapefruit)

Shake the bottle, then spray around baseboards, entry points for ants and just about anywhere you’ve seen ants. Repeat every few days until ants are completely gone.

Awhile back, when I had the rescue experience with a spider in the shower, I was heartened by the comments people made about how they rescue the insects and small creatures that come across their paths. It truly does my heart good to see how people are reaching out to help our insect kin.

If you have a special tip for dealing with ants, insects, spiders – leave a comment and share!

Here’s To New Beginnings,



Do You Have Ants in Your House?

Animal Communication, Grasshoppers and Ants

from Janet Roper, Animal Communicator & Educator