Friday, September 4, 2015

From Wags to Riches celebrates a man who cares about animals

When a reality show takes a look at real people, making positive efforts, especially when it involves animals, I'm there. I love to see people who really care about the welfare of animals highlighted. That's especially true of this TV series about Bill Berloni.

I met Bill when I helped him bring his story to Guideposts magazine. He had rescued a scruffy shelter dog, and trained the dog to become the canine star of Broadway's Annie. But Bill Berloni's story is so much more. Because he really cares about dogs. Now an award-winning theatrical animal trainer, the dogs Bill works with come to live with him on his farm in Connecticut.

It's at this farm that the show, From Wags to Riches, is filmed. It follows Bill, along with his wife and daughter, and the house and barn full of dogs, a llama, a donkey and more!

From Wags to Riches premiered on Discovery Family Channel August 6. There have been four episodes so far. I'm not sure if there are more planned. In last Thursday's episode, Bill worked with a despondent 8 year old St. Bernard at the Humane Society of NY where he volunteers as Director of animal training and match making. He came up with a plan to help bring him around, and eventually Titus felt better, and even found his forever home.

He also searched for the perfect rescue dogs to play a role as Toto in a production of the Wizard of Oz. All Bill's canine actors and actresses are rescues. He evaluates the dogs' ability to focus, ability to learn, and ability to remain calm in stressful situations. Two dogs are used for the role of Toto. "A dog who is feisty enough to run away from the Wicked Witch is not the same dog who will sit calmly while Dorothy sings Somewhere over the Rainbow," Bill said.

It's fascinating to see how Bill evaluates and trains his canine stars. And then returns home to his own brood, giving them all the love and attention they deserve. I especially appreciated hearing him discuss the joys of senior dogs, and his own senior cairn terrier Snickers. I love my senior dogs Kelly (13) and Ike (9).

One of the funniest lines in the show was when Bill was getting his English Bulldog Nigel ready to appear in an event, Broadway Barks, hosted by Bernadette Peters. As he was rushing out the door he called out to his wife, "Oh! Nigel needs his hat!"

And his wife responded, "Which one?"

haha, how many dogs have several hats to choose from!

Turns out it was his bowler.

From Wags to Riches is a show that showcases a man who cares about animals, and who does much good for animals. And that's definitely worth watching.

Bill Berloni- Facebook

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Wordless Wednesday--Shake it Off

When a dog comes out of the lake or ocean, (or even the bathtub!) what does he do but give a good, hard shake to send that water flying and get himself feeling in shipshape again. We can learn a lot from our dogs. If something is upsetting you today, a hurt prickling at you, a worry niggling at you, and you've done what you can to remedy things---just shake it off. Some things you can't change. And others aren't worth stewing over.  So be like a dog and shake it off!

Join Blog Paws Wordless Wednesday Blog Hop.

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Crunch! Munch! Awesome Solid Gold Dog Food Giveaway

Kelly just competed the Solid Gold Free Spirit Challenge by trying Solid Gold dog food for four weeks. And we're running a giveaway so you can try it too!

During this time we answered a questionnaire to assess the appropriate formula specifically for her age, health and activity level. We kept track of her appetite, digestion and overall health during this time. We blogged about Solid Gold's ingredients, and how Kelly enjoyed the taste.

We were exceptionally pleased with our trial. Solid Gold is natural and holistic, with grain free varieties and many different proteins to choose from. Kelly loved the taste of the venison Buck Wild variety, and responded well physically. Even Ike decided that he liked the taste better than his own food! We give Solid Gold 4 paws up!

Now it's your turn to sample Solid Gold, and see what this premium food can do for your dog. Enter to win a Solid Gold V.I.P. Prize Package consisting of:

1 (4lb) bag of Solid Gold dog food, your choice of variety, 1 bag Solid Gold dog treats, plus great swag including a tote bag, food scoop, and coupon.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Good luck!

Full Disclosure:
*I was provided a 3 month supply of Solid Gold dog food for review, 3 (4lb) dog food bag coupons, and one V.I.P. gift package consisting of 4 lbs dog food, treats, scoop, tshirt and tote bag. This in no way influenced my review. Opinions expressed here are 100% my own.

Friday, August 28, 2015

Wonderful Dog (and Cat) Art Print Giveaway from RetroPets

I recently released my book trailer video celebrating the human-animal bond, and was so happy to hear from so many of you who loved the images in the video.  A picture can capture an emotion, make you smile, or melt your heart. Today, I've got a special treat for you! If you love pets (you do, right?!) then you're going to love this giveaway!

Retro Pets offered me a sample of their beautiful animal prints, and they're giving me SIX prints to give away! I'm excited that so many of you will get the chance to experience this adorable art and have one of your very own.

Artist Krista Brooks took her love for all things vintage and combined it with a talent for drawing animals, and the result is charming, colorful, absolutely delightful art prints for pet lovers.

Some of the designs, which resemble old-time advertising, include coffee, beer and wine labels. Others are for doggy treats and biscuits, while others represent ads for pajamas, purses or pubs. There are nearly 100 breeds to choose from, and yes, there are even prints featuring frisky felines.

We received the beautiful prints Fetching Dreams tennis balls,  

Ike likes his look-alike!

Ready Retriever Golden Ale,

and Best Pick Pup apples.

Kelly's twin is the apple of her eye!

Krista's designs are absolutely adorable, the colors are bright, the dogs' expressions are priceless, and they the retro style is gorgeous. I love how I could choose a design to "go with" each of my dogs, and have already chosen a spot in my kitchen to hang them.

And now, here is your chance to win one of these gorgeous prints for yourself! I'm giving away six 8x10 prints, so there are plenty of chances to win!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Full Disclosure: I was given two 11x14 prints and one 8x10 print to review, along with six 8x10 prints to give away, in exchange for my honest review. This in no way influenced my review. Opinions expressed here are 100% my own.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Pets can be Messy

Pets can be messy.
And stinky.
Muddy paws. Accidents in the house. Grubby dirty hairy bodies on our good furniture.
And in our home, lately Ike is having a stomach upset. And this means that all of a sudden, without warning, he's tossed his, kibble, and I have a smelly mess on the carpet.

"My tummy doesn't feel so good. But how is this spray going to help?"

When sent me a bottle of Rocco & Roxie Stain & Odor Eliminator to try out, I wasn't sure I needed it at first. After all, my dogs aren't puppies--they're 9 and 13 years old. We're not working on housebreaking. They don't have accidents in the house.

Then, Ike started with his tummy issues. (We've had him to the vet and he's on medication. At this point we think it's a food sensitivity, a tricky issue to resolve.) And that's when I realized I had a definite use for this product.

Following the directions, I scooped and sopped up what I could with a paper towel. Then I sprayed a liberal amount of Stain and Odor Eliminator on the area. After letting it stand for a few minutes, I wiped it clean. After it was dry, I vacuumed.

This helps freshen things up!

Happily, the carpet came out nice and clean. Of course, I got to it right away. I haven't tested it on old, set-in stains. But, the best part is that the carpet also smelled nice and fresh. I worry about my house smelling "doggy" and I think getting up these little spots and stains quickly, with a quality product is key to keeping the smell in check.

Rocco & Roxie has natural bio-enzymatic formula that is said to "permanently eliminate pet urine odor" and I might add, upchuck odors as well. A week after application, it still smells fresh and clean. It works on carpet and upholstery, and is safe around children and pets.

I definitely recommend Rocco & Roxie Stain and Odor Eliminator. Although I haven't tried it on pet accidents, based on my experience, I have every confidence that it would work great. I like the odor, it's fresh but not perfumey.

This is a good cleanser for anyone with pets.

*Full Disclosure- sent me a 32 oz. bottle of Rocco & Roxie Stain and Odor Eliminator in exchange for my honest review. This in no way influenced my review. Opinions expressed here are 100% my own.