Monday, December 31, 2012

New Years Resolutions


HAPPY NEW YEAR!!

I like the new year...getting organized, new beginnings and all. And new year's resolutions! Here are mine:

1. Blogging- to focus on content. To think, in what ways can I help or inspire others? Instead of falling back on easy posts, what do I really want to say? I hope to make Peggy's Pet Place in 2013 worth your valuable time to read.

2. Pet Parenting- to spend more quality time just appreciating each dog. The dogs are both seniors, and I don't want to look back with any regrets because I was too busy. Those times when we're snuggled together on my big green chair and Kelly is curled on the back of my chair around my neck, and Brooks is keeping my feet warm...those are the best.

3. Writing- to get my third book published (my agent has it out on submission now, and several publishing houses are considering it.) and to complete my fourth book. This may be either about someone wonderful in the pet world or a novel, depending upon if I can work things out with said person I'd like to write about. (It's a secret for now!)

4. Health- same old same old: to lose weight and get fit. After Dieting with my Dog (thanks Kelly!) I've gone through the Big M, and regained a few pounds and I now need to figure out what works for my body now that it's all changed. One big goal is to drink more water, which is a habit that always seems to go out the window after about 3 days.

How about you?

Monday, December 24, 2012

Friday, December 21, 2012

holiday dogs from modern dog

Have you seen the Modern Dog Holiday Hounds photo contest on Facebook? It's been an absolute delight to browse through all the photos, each and every one makes me smile! The winner received $500 worth of Redbarn premium pet products. So many people sent in their pictures, and it warms my heart to see how much a part of our families we consider our pets. Here are a few of my favorites...and there are bazillions more!
All photos from Modern Dog's Holiday Hounds contest on Facebook.




















Like Modern Dog on Facebook, then check out ALL the pictures, on
Holiday Hounds album #1
Holiday Hounds album #2
Holiday Hounds album #3
Holiday Hounds album #4



Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Wednesday Pet Roundup- Comfort Dogs, Naughty Cats

Hi and welcome to Wednesday Pet Roundup!

* Not much to smile about when it comes to the recent tragedy, but nice to see how these therapy dogs helped some school children in Sandy Hook.

* From Something Wagging This Way Comes, 5 Things Dogs Do that You Need to Learn. Can you add to the list?

*Kritters that Twitter share the benefits of dog toys. So don't feel guilty when you get your pet a Christmas gift or two!

* And, if your pet has enough toys, here are some high tech holiday gifts for pets.

* For a little feline fun: Mashable brings us 10 Naughty Cats vs. Christmas Trees.

I hope you're all hugging your pets, and your loved ones, a little tighter this week.
Happy Holidays!

Monday, December 17, 2012

Brooks Books- Dogs of Courage

Brooks here. Would you like to read a book about hero dogs? Then I've got the book for you: Dogs of Courage, the Heroism and Heart of Working Dogs Around the World by Lisa Rogak. Of course, I think all dogs are heroes. 
Here's Mom with the review:












 Me:  Dogs of Courage by Lisa Rogak (St. Martin's Press Griffin 2012) describes the many different jobs performed by service and working dogs.  From police dogs to search and rescue dogs to guide dogs to therapy dogs, these are the stories of dogs who spend their lives helping and serving people.

The book explains the duties, care, and training of dozens of varieties of working dogs. It also includes touching stories of dogs including:

* Apollo, an apricot Standard Poodle, helped bring a 10-year-old girl out of a coma.

* Bilbo, a Newfoundland, a canine lifeguard and "Pet Hero of the Year."

* Sheba, a Rottweiler, rescued nine puppies that had been buried alive.

Rogak acknowledges that some people feel dogs shouldn't work, and that they deserve to be fed, cuddled and spoiled only. However, she explains, many dogs are happiest when they have a purpose, and are allowed to do what they were born to do. "Dogs should have a chance to prove they are a hero."

Basic introductory information here, but the topic is interesting and so are the different dogs and the many ways they help humans. These dogs truly are heroes.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Pawsome Painted Window Scenes with Dogs (and Cats)


Do you include your dogs in your holiday traditions? Since they're part of the family, of course dogs should join in the festivities too. Jackie from Pooch Smooches and I thought it would be fun to trade some of our holiday traditions on our blogs today. I wrote about Family Photo Christmas Cards with the dogs. And here's her post about a great tradition painting these pawsome scenes on windows! So, without further ado, here's Jackie!

 Guest Post by Jackie from Pooch Smooches

Thanks, Peggy for inviting me to talk about a fun holiday tradition we’ve been doing for years in my family!

It’s a bit difficult to involve the dog in most of our Christmas traditions (for example, our dogs have never wanted to watch It’s a Wonderful Life with us!), so sometimes you have to settle for involving them indirectly. And that’s exactly what we’ve been doing at my sister Kathy’s house for the past decade or so.

 My other sister, Jean, is a fabulous artist, so every year shortly after Thanksgiving, we meet up at Kath’s ready to paint her windows, always with a dog-theme that features Kath’s rescue pup, Indy.
Here's Indy as Max, with The Grinch
















 In this one, we have angel Bailey (my beagle) in the left window and angel Lady/Dannie (we have 2 angel Goldens in the family, one Jean's and one belonged to my brother) on the right. Indy's halo is attached, since she's... no angel.
Bark the herald Pooches sing!














Here we have carolers singing, "Dog rest ye merry gentlemen, let nothing at you bay," with Indy in the period-piece costume...














...And Jean's dog, Roxie, in the side window: 




















An ode to Dickens with Indy as Tiny Tim: 





















It's hard to decide which is my favorite (I really like the Grinch one...) but if I had to pick just one, this rendition of A Christmas Story is pretty darn cute! (With Indy, of course, playing the part of Ralphie!) 
"All I want for Xmas is an official Red Ryder Carbine-Action 200-Shot Range Model Air Rifle!"















And of course, the squirrel and the opossum (Indy's nemeses) tell her, "You'll shoot your eye out dog!" Then, on the side window, we depicted the "triple dog dare" of sticking your tongue on the pole:


















And this is the one we just did a couple of weeks ago, with Indy and my other sister's cat, Topi on the left:















Part of this tradition involves going outside every, oh, say 5 minutes (we paint the inside of the windows, but write the lettering on the outside) to say, "Oh it looks so cute!" (The paints look so different from the inside, that you really do have to step outside to check your work, but not every 5 minutes...)

I did my own windows at our old house once as well, with a pup theme, but our new house has very few windows facing the street, so there's no point painting the sliding glass doors just for me and the hubs to enjoy! Anyway, here's that window that I painted for the Christmas after we'd lost our angel Bailey and just adopted Abby.
"Checking the list to see who is naughty [puppy Abby] and nice [angel Bailey]"



If you’d like to try painting your own windows, here are some tips:
1)      Supplies: tempura paints, a Sharpie pen, some brushes. For the brushes, the cheap kind at the craft store work fine. Be sure to get nice fat ones (we use round brushes, with the face of the brush around the size of a nickel), or else it will take you forever to fill in. 

2)      Outline the design first in Sharpie (you can always clean off the Sharpie and start over if it doesn’t come out right the first time), and then fill in with the paint. But don’t load too much paint up on your brush, as you don’t want it to run.

3)      It will likely look streaky and ugly from inside, but go outside and check – it always looks much different on the outside. (It’s up to you if you want to check it every 5 minutes and say “Oh, how cute!” every time. It adds to the enjoyment, but is not required.)

4)      Dogs are MUCH easier to paint than people. (Flesh tone is so hard! That’s why so much of Santa’s face is hidden in the last drawing!) If a dog is too hard to paint – try something easy: bows, ornaments, snowflakes, evergreen boughs. Look at your Christmas cards for ideas. A few paw-prints or dog bones with red ribbons will add an easy doggy-feel to your design.

5)      If you want to add words, use a Sharpie on the outside of the window (much easier than writing backwards on the inside!).

6)      Clean up involves LOTS of paper towels and some Windex. If you used a Sharpie on the outside, WD-40 or nail polish remover helps get it off easier. Windex alone requires more elbow grease. (The outside is harder to clean, maybe because the pen gets “baked on” when it’s exposed to the elements.)


Happy Holidays! We'd love to hear how you involve your dogs in your traditions! And don't forget to jump over to Pooch Smooches today and read my guest post about one of our holiday traditions!

* Check out Jackie's hysterical novel, What the Dog Ate!

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Wednesday Pet Roundup-- Driving Dogs

Hi and welcome to Wednesday Pet Roundup! Kelly is modeling her Christmas cape. Do you think she's ready for some snow? We may not have snow, but here are this week's links!












* What would you do to convince people that rescue dogs make great pets? Would something involving a car come to mind? The New Zealand SPCA taught a beardie mix, a giant schnauzer and a whippet a rather unique skill...the dogs learned how to drive.



* How does your dog indicate that she needs to go out? CBS news tells us about Kieth Jin's invention--a doggy doorbell that can be used inside or outside the house. The dog pushes a large target with his nose.

* Another program for overweight pets: Pet RXercise. This allows you to get into Georgia state parks for free if you exercise your dog!

* Dogs aren't the only ones getting fit. From the Huff Post, here are Cats on Treadmills.

* Check out Steve Dale's Pet World's new holiday contest: Let's See What Your Pets Wear for the Holiday Photo Contest! 

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Meet Maggie at Wag the Dog UK

Photo courtesy of Wag the Dog UK
The best gifts are thoughtful words and actions...and that's the idea behind Something Wagging This Way Comes wonderful Pet Blogger Gift Exchange!  Not only is this a fantastic way for a bunch of pet bloggers to exchange kind words, but it's also a great way to introduce you to new blogs, and help you discover more about the blogs you already love.

I'd like to introduce you to Wag the Dog UK. Maggie and Trina are your hostesses to this delightful blog. In addition to being attractive, this blog is so useful. You can find information about food, care, and traveling with your dog (Did you know that you can cruise with your dog aboard the cruise ship, the QE2?!)

So, because this is a holiday blog hop, I'm going to wish HAPPY HOLIDAYS to Wag the Dog UK with this acrostic:

H--- is for HAPPY, which is the way Maggie the beagle describes herself! I can see why!

A-- is for ADVENTURES. Maggie loves to travel, and has lots of tips to help you travel with your pet too.
P--is for PHOTOS. I love the great pictures on the site. One of them even won an award for Best Dog Friendly Travel Photo!
P-- is for PRODUCT REVIEWS. Reviews on leashes, tags, travel bowls and more will help you make informed decisions on pet needs.
Y-- is for YUMMY. Check out recipes dogs will love for beef stew, chicken soup and pumpkin biscotti!
Photo courtesy of Wag the Dog UK

H--- is for HOTELS. You'll find information on dog friendly hotels here.
O-- is for ooo-la-la. Read about taking your pet to France!
L-- is for LIVER BISCUITS. You can find the recipe here!
I-- is for ITCHY. Check out Maggie's video of back scratching fun in the grass!
D-- DOG FRIENDLY GUIDE to the Big Apple...what you need to know to visit NYC with your dog!
A--ATTENTION DEFICIT DISORDER-- find out if dogs can get this condition.
Y-- is for YES! The answer to the question, Would Wag the Dog UK make me want to wag, if I had a tail?
S -- is for Switzerland, where Trina, Maggie and the gang live!

I hope you stop by and visit Wag the Dog UK and say hello and Happy Holidays!

Monday, December 10, 2012

Ho Ho Holiday Toys for Pets-- The Carrot

Ho ho Holiday Toys for Pets. Today we have...

THE CARROT!

I've had the pleasure of sampling various toys from PurrfectPlay, and they are consistently my dogs' favorites. Why? I think it's because of the material. It's natural. Organic. And it really seems that the natural fibers provide them excitement that I don't see with plastic toys and stuffies.

The carrot is PurrfectPlay's newest offering.

Squeaky Hemp Carrot

  • Great for throwing and retrieving
  • Squeaky Fun!
  • Outer tough layer of hemp canvas
  • Inner layer of hemp canvas contains stuffing & squeaker
  • Topped with sturdy hemp braid "leaves"
  • Stuffed with certified organic cotton batting
  • No synthetic or plastics
  • All seams are double sewn
  • Tough and washable
Made in the USA 

Purrfectplay sent Kelly and Brooks each a carrot toy to test. They both absolutely loved this toy right away.  

These toys are very sturdy, they will hold up to a strong chewer. That being said, Kelly is a terror of a chewer. She did get through her carrot. But the thing I like about these toys are that if your dog does chew through the first layer, the stuffing is contained inside a second layer! And, the stuffing is natural cotton instead of yucky synthetic fiberfill.

Brooks is more of a gentle chewer and he did not get through the carrot toy. He did, however, chew a braids off from the end, so I cut the rest of them off to prevent him from swallowing them. It's funny how the two dogs are so different--Kelly didn't bother with the braids at all.
Brooks chewed off the braids.


I highly recommend Purrfectplay Squeaky Hemp Carrot. Your dog will be attracted to the natural fabric and love this toy!

All PurrfectPlay products are:
  • Dye and toxin free
  • Natural and organic
  • Sustainable and fair trade
  • 5% of annual sales shared with rescues
Please visit Purrfectplay and check out their toys for your dog...and while you're there, check out their cat toys too!

*We were given two toys to review. The opinions expressed here are 100% my own.

Friday, December 7, 2012

The Care Files celebrates animal welfare volunteers

Some of the best gifts we can give are those that make a difference, and for many of us, we'd love to help make a difference for pets in need. Chris Wicke is a media producer in LA who believes that his videos will help spread awareness about important animal welfare issues. 

The CareFiles is a multimedia series about ordinary people becoming heroes volunteering on the frontlines of animal welfare. Each 4 to 6 minute video will feature someone who helps in ways such as:

caring for injured animals
rescuing cats and dogs
working in field clinics
reuniting lost pets with their families
helping pets in foster care


Chris is raising money for his project through a kickstarter campaign. If you're looking for a great gift to give your veterinarian, pet sitter, dog groomer, or anyone who loves animals, making a donation in their name would be a great idea. Check out their Facebook page, too!

An inspiring and beautiful photo series by Rachel Devine of the amazing work these volunteers are doing is being created to go along with this campaign. For a donation of $10, you can give your loved one a credit in the video and on the Care Files website. Larger donations get your pet's picture on the website, and more. But of course, it's not about the rewards. It's about helping get these videos created, so that they can spread awareness for these important issues.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Wednesday Pet Roundup- Big Paw

Hi and welcome to Wednesday Pet Roundup! How do you like this big Bernese paw!

* Do you find this holiday season that you're too focused on the hustle, bustle, buying gifts and all the stress? Blogger Pamela from Something Wagging This Way Comes is doing a great thing. She's organized a pet blogger holiday exchange where the gifts are not purchased items, but kind words, blog post reviews, tweets and support for our fellow pet bloggers! Kudos, Kristine, that's the way to spread the true holiday spirit. (I can't wait to share the positive posts about my holiday exchange partner, coming up soon!)

* Do-gooder of the week: Ohio teen and actor Lou Wegner started a foundation to help animals when he was just 14 years old. He's now 16, and thousands of kids are part of his Kids Against Animal Cruelty. Check out his Facebook page--more than 15,000 likes!

*Dogtipper shares news of a Christmas themed pet adoption event--The Grinchmas pet adoption event at Universal studios!

* Most of us are aware of what foods we should keep away from our pets (chocolate, raisins, onions to name a few.) But how often do we think about what might be growing in our yard? A message of caution if you have wild mushrooms growing in your yard-- Sadly, Seattle pugs Milo and Maggie died after eating mushrooms in their yard that turned out to be poisonous.

* Happy December! Stay warm, healthy and happy!

Monday, December 3, 2012

Holiday destination with your dog--San Francisco



Dreaming of a holiday vacation with your family and of course the dog? Then check out our guest post today, about a great travel destination for you and your dog, and some tips for vacationing in an RV.

Today's Guest Post is contributed by Joe Laing of El Monte RV.

A Holiday RV Vacation in San Francisco with Your Pet
By Joe Laing, El Monte RV

San Francisco, California is a perfect holiday destination and one where you can comfortably and happily take your pet with you. This city has many dog parks, including Golden Gate Park where four-legged animals can romp with abandon over more than one thousand acres. The winter holidays in the Bay Area offer so many events, attractions and performances, you won't want to miss a thing.

When you take your pet on vacation with you in an RV motorhome, you will find many conveniences. Your dog will feel right at home the whole time, surrounded by his or her favorite toys and pillows. There will be no frantic searching for hotels or motels that accept pets, no trying to find accommodations that don't charge fees for animals that are accompanying you. An RV vacation to San Francisco is a great way to visit Northern California. You simply fly in, rent an RV and get started.

RV camping in San Francisco is abundant and provides all the amenities you need. San Francisco RV Resort is only fifteen minutes from the city, giving you easy access to all sights and attractions for your holiday adventures. The Pillar Point RV Park is south of San Francisco in beautiful Half Moon Bay and you just have to travel north to the city for your planned activities. This campground accepts pets with a few restrictions.

Take your pet with you as you celebrate the holidays in the City by the Bay. There is nothing sweeter than stopping by Union Square and enjoying the marvelous sight of the gorgeously decorated Christmas tree. It will put you right into the Christmas spirit. Of course, along Union Street there will be a month-long list of celebrations all through the holidays.

Take a trip over to Benicia for the Christmas Parade & Holiday Market on the 8th of December. There will be local bands, plenty of friendly folks, foods and of course, Santa! Bring some tidbits for your dog to keep him happy.

Fisherman's Wharf is a pet-friendly place, and you will find that the Fisherman's Wharf Fishing Fleet remains lit all during the holiday season. Head over to the Sport Fishing Harbor where you can get the best views of this breathtaking display. On December 14, catch the Holiday Lights & Sights Boat Parade at Fisherman's Wharf on Pier 39. This is a parade you won't easily forget, with boats all decorated with lights and decorations parading along the waterfront.

photo by Melissa Doroquez, Flickr.com
There are many more pet-friendly attractions that you can visit. At the Embarcadero, walk your dog along the beautiful pier, and maybe even gaze upon some of the famous San Francisco seals. If you have always wanted to visit Coit Tower now is the time. This attraction is open to pets, and gives you an incredible view of the San Francisco skyline. And remember, you can get around the city in the pet-friendly cable cars.

If you want to get outdoors with your pet for a romp, go to San Francisco's Ocean Beach and stroll the three plus miles of sandy expanse. Watch the sea birds soaring above you. You can also head down to the south end and come upon Fort Funston, a dog's paradise. Pack a lunch to take along and hike the trails around the dunes. There are even dog bowls for your pet that are located by the main trail where it forks and goes down to the dunes. If you want your pet to have some fun off-leash, go to Baker Beach and let him play while you enjoy the views of the Marin Headlands.

A few things you might want to do and leave your loved pet at "home" in your RV are ice skating at the Embarcadero Center Ice Rink or attending the December 7 production of the Christmas classic "A Christmas Carol" at the American Conservatory Theater. You can also attend Nutcracker Sweets which is being presented by the Mark Foehringer Dance Project at the Children's Creativity Museum. This will run each weekend through December 23.

Spending the holidays in San Francisco is wonderful, particularly when you don't have to leave your pet alone for the time you are away. A trip there in an RV motorhome is the perfect way to keep the whole family together for the Christmas season.

About the Author
Joe Laing is the Marketing Director of El Monte RV a nationwide provider of RV rentals (http://www.elmonterv.com/) and used RV Sales (http://www.elmontervsales.com/).

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