Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Happiness in Bhutan: A Dog's Point of View

"A human's happiness is in its mind, a dog's happiness is in its tail." - The Bhutanese Guide to Happiness

Hi everyone! I'm glad so many of you wanted to learn more about our Bhutan travels. You had some great questions - mostly about Gross National Happiness.

Elizabeth wondered what happiness rating I would give this trip versus others, which was fun to think about. For me, there are typically two kinds of travels - the vacations to our personal "happy places" (Paris for me) where you feel totally at home and practically dance down the sidewalks in glee the entire time. Then there are the adventures - challenging your viewpoint on the world, rewarding but tough. I expected Bhutan to be more the latter, but it surprised me by being something else entirely. Challenging at times, sure. But the thing is, I just smiled a heck of lot on this trip. I felt very relaxed and found myself frequently delighted by the smallest things.

Like the dogs!

There are dogs everywhere in Bhutan, many strays. None look too hungry.

They always appear very relaxed and zen, and seem, well, happy - you couldn't help but feel the same watching them lounge.

The dogs who hang out at the dzongs (fortresses that serve as religious and cultural centers) and temples seem particularly content. Perhaps the Buddhist belief that a dog is the last animal form a soul takes before it is reincarnated as a human ensures that they are highly regarded.


I swear they smile in their sleep.

Do you thing they're on to something?

Relax, lay in the sun, enjoy the view, don't get too worked up --things will work out. Seems like a good philosophy to me!

Happy Wednesday, all! Hope you find a least a moment or two to relax, lounge in a ray of sun and be zen. 


  1. I always say in my next life I want to come back as Teddy:) He leads such a relaxed stressed free life..his biggest stress is going to the groomer go get spiffed up.
    Your pictures are magical...there is a certain peace and spirit that I swear transcends the pictures...especially seeing the monks? walking in their colorful robes. What an adventure this was....and yes the dogs do indeed seem to practice what Bhutan preaches...happiness.

  2. Best. Post. Ever. :)
    And I agree with Tina. It is impossible not to feel calm just from looking at these beautiful photos.

  3. Jeanne,
    That is so fun! With Molly by my feet, looking much like the dogs in your photos, I think they must be very happy!!! I love that you answered my question. I think I'm going to try and plan my next trip with a zen element attached!!!

    Hope it's been a great day!
    xoxo Elizabeth

  4. made me smile, and i needed that smile. bhutan dogs are even more interesting to me than french dogs so you may need to go back and make it a book project!


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    Have a great Sunday dear

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  6. Their stalwart physiques are what attract many potential owners. Most full-grown dogs will weigh around 25-40 pounds. A few specimens will, exceed 100 pounds. dog training



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