Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Blog the Change for Animals- Responsible Pet Parenting

My son, who has own apartment, is ready to get his first dog of his own. I'm so excited to be a gramma! He's planning to get either a lab, golden retriever, or possibly a retired racing greyhound. He wants to adopt through a local rescue group, and if possible he'd like a puppy or young dog (We've had several of our senior rescue dogs cross over the bridge, so I can't say I blame him for wanting a younger one of his own.). We've been talking a lot about how a dog will change his life and the decisions he'll need to make. What is he going to feed the dog? How is he going to care for the dog while he's at work (9-5)? What about when he wants to go out after work, or has a softball game? How often will he walk the dog? etc. This has led to many interesting discussions about pet parenting. And when better to discuss this than on Blog the Change for Animals--a great day for promoting Responsible Pet Parenting to the next generation. So today, I thought I'd turn things around a bit--

My son with Kelly

I've given him advice, but since kids so often listen to others more than their (extraordinarily wise, brilliant and never wrong) parents, I'd like to ask, What advice would you give my son? What should he know about responsible pet parenting? What are your best tips for a young man about to set out to adopt his very first best friend?
I'll be sure to give him all your comments.
Thank You!

Friday, April 11, 2014

FitDog Friday- Go, Dog, GoPro

One of these adorable pups is Simba, when he was an 8 weeks old in the shelter. Simba had no home, no family.

Luckily for Simba, Doug came along. The two locked eyes and before you knew it, Simba found a new home and a new best friend. This is Simba now, 4 years later, with his adoptive dad, Doug.

Simba is your typical dog--he likes to nap, he likes to cuddle. But there's a time and a place for everything, and there's only so much napping a young dog like Simba can do. Doug's an active guy, and Simba's not one to be left behind. So off they go, Simba running along while Doug rides his bike. They bike, hike, and swim making Simba a happy, healthy and fit dog! Watch this heartwarming video taken with Doug's GoPro, and see just how happy a fit dog can be.

Thank you Doug for sharing this wonderful video of a truly fit dog!

Want more positive pet tips, good news, and special offers? Fetch my free newsletter, Pawsitively Pets. Kelly and Ike hope to see you there! 

 FitDog Friday is co-hosted by Peggy's Pet Place, Slimdoggy, and To Dog with Love. Join our hop!

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Why I want to Share my Home with Senior Dogs

USED: One 10 year old Basset Hound.
He doesn't move fast, he sheds, has gas, and eats like a horse.
And he's having "accidents".

Friends of ours fostered this dog. I think they were growing attached to him, despite the wet spots on the carpeting. Then along came an elderly couple, who fell and love and adopted the droopy-eared guy. They said it was their mission to give a good home to senior dogs.

 And I immediately thought, THAT'S WHAT I WANT TO DO! Adopt, or foster, senior dogs. After all, we have Kelly. She's 13 and living life to the fullest!

Kelly, now 13, is a happy senior dog.

 And Ike, at age 8 is considered a senior as well.

Check out Ike's white spectacles!

And we had Brooks, the best dog we've ever known. He was 11 years old when we adopted him. He seemed healthy, except for allergies. Then he was diagnosed with cancer, and died suddenly before we celebrated his One Year with our family.

Losing Brooks was one of the most difficult experiences I've faced. I stood by his gurney at the Emergency Vet, while he went into grand mal seizures, one after another. They said there was no option but to euthanize him, the cancer was most likely in his brain. I couldn't let them do it. Everyone left the room but me and Brooks, and I couldn't even pat the dog, who was no longer the Brooks I knew, because he was thrashing and foaming at the mouth. The vet popped her head in the door and asked if I was ready. "No," I said. So they gave me some more time with Brooks. The seizure passed and he was asleep, exhausted, barely alive.

 "Are you ready?"


 Finally, I couldn't let Brooks face another seizure, and we had to say goodbye. I'll never, ever forget Brooks' gentle soul, his stoic acceptance of what must have been great pain in the days, weeks, who knows how long before he was diagnosed. The way he melted at my touch. He was so submissive, he would never look into my eyes. But every night he sat with me in my big green chair, chin on my lap.

Brooks, age 11, happy in my lap!

This wasn't supposed to be a memorial to the greatest dog that ever lived. This was supposed to be a post about why I want to adopt or foster senior dogs. I want to, because senior dogs are gentle and noble, often tired, yet full of wisdom that comes from experience. I can't stand to see them lonely and homeless in their golden years. They deserve a soft, comfy bed, and the peace of having a consistent, stable, loving home until they go to the rainbow bridge. I love senior dogs.

But then, I reconsider, could I do it? Would I be able to do love another dog as magnificent as Brooks, only to lose him in too short a time? Would I be able to do it once more, or twice, or again and again? Would the comfort of knowing I'm helping these sweet dogs outweigh the grief of losing them?

Does it hurt to lose a dog after having him for only one year any more--or less--than to lose a dog after having him for 8 or 10 or 13 years? It's quick and easy to get attached to a dog. Losing is painful, no matter when it happens.

Going Strong: a very old dog I met at Bark for Life Walk-a-thon.

 So, if and when I adopt or foster senior dogs, I won't focus upon the losing. Instead, I'll keep my mind on the present. The happy times, where I witness this dog being loved and cared for, walking in the fresh air, sleeping on that comfy bed. Chasing a tennis ball, lounging on the couch, getting hair all over that couch, getting muddy paw prints on my kitchen floor. If I stay in the present, if I focus on what this dog needs right now, if I don't think about that part at the end when my tears flow and that comfy bed is empty...then, maybe then, I can foster senior dogs.

Want more positive pet tips, good news, and special offers? Fetch my free newsletter, Pawsitively Pets. Kelly and Ike hope to see you there!

Monday, April 7, 2014

Kelly and Ike's Wild Cravings

What can the shape of your dog's treats tell you?
Well, in the case of EVO Wild Cravings, this is what they told me:

Circle is for Zero- as in, there are no grains.

Triangle reminds me of the Food Pyramid, which represents the high nutritional quality of Evo Wild Cravings-- high protein, low carbohydrates, no empty calories. The first two ingredients and Beef and Lamb meal.

Bone is for biscuits that are crunchy and fun to chew, like a bone.

Heart is because you love your dog so much, you want him to have the healthiest treats.

Chewy.com offered Kelly, Ike and I the chance to review EVO Wild Cravings Red Meat Formula Grain Free Baked Dog Treats. Without a doubt, these are some of their favorite treats ever! The dogs are always enthusiastic about snacks, but I could barely get these out of the bag without them jumping and dancing and wagging their tails like crazy in anticipation. Do dogs like red meat? Yes, they do!

The size is just perfect for a little reward or treat without giving them too much-- approximately
14 kcal/treat.

I've recently switched to grain-free food, so I'd been on the search for grain-free treats as well...and we are very happy we found Wild Cravings. We highly recommend these treats.

Full Disclosure: Chewy.com provided me with one bag of EVO Wild Cravings to review. This in no way influenced my review. Opinions expressed here are 100% my own.

You can also enter Chewy.com's April giveaway!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Friday, April 4, 2014

FitDog Friday- Awards, and Big Anniversary Giveaway!

Happy Anniversary to FitDog Friday!!

You've been sharing your fit dog stories and posts for one year now!! I've learned something from all of your posts. You've inspired me, and made me laugh, cry and promise to get more fit and active with my dogs. Thank you for being a part of the FitDog family.

Co-hosts Slimdoggy, To Dog with Love, and Peggy's Pet Place are proud to announce our FitDog Friday Participation Awards. These awards our reserved for our most faithful and dedicated participants in the FitDog Friday Blog Hop. Please send your congratulations to our winners, and don't forget to sign up for the FitDog Friday Anniversary Giveaway!

High Mile Award: Paws and PedalsFDF_HighMileAward

Consistency Award: Hawk AKA Brown Dog
Pack Variety Award: Cascadian NomadsFDF_PackVarietyAward
Neighbor Award: Talent HoundsFDF_NeighborAward
Cross-Train Award: Dog TreadFDF_CrossTrainAward
Sweetest Award: Sugar, the Golden RetrieverFDF_SweetestAward
All Weather Award: My GBGV LifeFDF_AllweatherAward
Athleticism Award: 
So Fly, My Life with Flyball DogsFDF_AthleticismAward
Pound for Pound Award: Tenacious Little TerrierFDF_pound4poundAward
In the Hunt Award: Sand Spring ChesapeakesFDF_IntheHuntAward

And now, to thank you for your participation, we're offering this fantastic prize package worth more than $200! 
  1. Beautiful bracelet courtesy of For Love of a Dog.
  2. One package SmartCookee Treats, your choice of three flavors.
  3. Paw Plunger: Gently, safely cleans paws. pawplunger.com,  petppi.com
  4. PetSafe Train & Praise: Teach your pet remotely with treats.
  5. Jones Chews Candy Box Woofers:  100% grown, made in the USA, and no artificial ingredients.
  6. Chuckit! Tumble Bumper toy by Petmate
  7. Aspen Pet Cooling Mat by Petmate
  8. SlimDoggy Hat.
  9. SlimDoggy Bandana


Enter via the giveaway widget below for a chance to win. Simply enter your name and email to get started and then you can enter as few or as many ways as you like.


A special thanks to Petmate, PetSafe, SmartCookee, For Love of a Dog, Paw Plunger and Jones Chews for providing the prizes for our FitDog Friday Anniversary Giveaway.

FitDog Friday is co-hosted by Peggy's Pet Place, Slimdoggy, and To Dog with Love. Join our hop!

Want more positive pet tips, good news, and special offers? Fetch my free newsletter, Pawsitively Pets. Kelly and Ike hope to see you there!