Tuesday, February 20, 2018

How to keep your dog's teeth clean -- Merrick Fresh Kisses review

Nothing like doggy breath, huh? Hot and sometimes -- especially depending on what you feed them -- quite stinky.

But just like humans, stinky dog breath could be a sign of tooth decay. And just like humans, tooth decay in a dog can lead to all sorts of health problems.

That's why we've got to keep those teeth clean, right? And to do that, we'll show you how to brush a dog's teeth in a few easy steps, plus -- use a good dental treat. We recommend Merrick's new Fresh Kisses™ dental treats.

Use Merrick Fresh Kisses Dental Treats to keep your dog's teeth pearly!

DISCLOSURE: This post and giveaway is sponsored by Merrick Pet Care. The opinions and ideas in this post are my own and are uninfluenced by any other person or business.
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Hunting season's over: Help discarded beagles

For many states hunting season is over. It's a time of year many shelters and rescues dread.

See some hunters, not all, but enough, have this tradition. If the dogs won't hunt, or they are too old to hunt, or they are too old to breed hunters, they turn them loose, or turn them over to shelters.

And the shelters are full.

According to many rescues and shelters, hundreds of hounds and other hunting dogs are taken in. And it's not just in the south (though southern shelters are overrun with hounds), it happens all over.

Sunday, February 11, 2018

How to tell a discarded hound from a hunting hound

It's beagle season, and that's not a good thing.

This is the time of year when rescues and shelters say hounds and other hunting dogs start pouring into their facilities across the country, and especially in southern states.

But if you say this to a hunter, they may tell you it's not true.

Hunters for Hounds is a pro-hunting Facebook page that seeks to bridge the gap between hunters and houndsmen, and animal rescuers. At times that's led to intense arguments, where some will accuse rescuers of actually stealing hunting dogs.

Hunting dogs travel long distances. So how do you know a hunting dog is not lost, on the job -- or abandoned?
Hunting dogs travel long distances. So how do you know a hunting dog is not lost, on the job -- or abandoned?
Meanwhile, well-meaning animal lovers may find a hunting dog and think it's been abandoned and or is a stray, when it's just out on the job.

"The problem is hunting dogs can travel long distances, so finding the owner may be tough," the owner of the Hunters for Hounds page told me.

What does a person who finds a possible hunting dog to do? We have some tips.

Monday, January 8, 2018

GoDog toys are for tough chewers GIVEAWAY: Countdown to Christmas 2018

Happy New Year!

In December, I hosted a giveaway called Lulu's Countdown to Christmas.

I had promised giveaways from big companies.

I didn't deliver all those giveaways, and for that, I am sorry.

December 2017 ended up being the last month of my cat, Galadriel's life, and I became pre-occupied with her care. I tried to keep up with these posts but did a poor job of it. Serves me right for biting off more than I can chew!

But I owe you (and the companies I worked with) a couple more of these giveaways! So lets just start the countdown to Christmas in 2018, shall we?

Our first giveaway is a great product from one of our longtime supporters. We'll know you'll love it because Lulu and Jasmine do!

DISCLOSURE: All prizes and review samples in Lulu's Countdown to Christmas Giveaway were provided for free, but no other compensation was provided. All opinions are my own.

Tuesday, January 2, 2018

The great clothes debate: Does your dog need a coat?

It's the question every pet person has heard -- to clothe, or not to clothe your dog?

I admit, before I owned a dog, I came down firmly on the no clothes side. I even wondered if it was some form of abuse. If you haven't noticed, my opinion has softened somewhat.

But I know the question still remains among pet owners -- is dressing up your dog too much?

Now's as good a time as any to have this discussion -- because baby, it's cold outside!

Yes, even here in Florida.

Lows have been in the 40s and 50s every night. They may even get down to the 30s this week. Yeah, I know boohoo, right?

Well, I'm fine, thanks. It's the dogs you might want to be worried about.

They're willing to snuggle, it's so cold!
You see my dogs are southern dogs, and Lulu is a Florida dog. When Lulu and Jasmine are outside it's clear they are not used to the cold. Poor Jasmine especially shivers and whines outside.

Keeping warm and dry in jackets by Jelly Wellies (Lulu) and Buster (Jasmine).
If you have a dog who has short hair, a lean body type, is small or has a health issue, you should really consider getting a coat or a sweater.

What should you look for:
  • If you live in a snowy area, you may want to consider a water-resistant coat. 
  • You want something that covers the chest. The chest and abdominal area is your dog's core, just like it is on you. If you keep that area warm the heart can better pump blood to other areas of the body and help regulate temperature.  There area also has the least amount of fur.
    (Often in stores you see a coat that covers the back with a piece of fabric that goes across the middle. That's not as helpful when it comes to the cold)
  • Something that fits snug around the chest and waist, but not too tight. It should also give a little cover to the neck and down to the tail.
  •  Be roomy around the arm pits so the dog has plenty of movement.
If you've ever been to Pets Weekly.com, last year Stacy Mantle did a good write-up on coats for winter. It includes some of my favorite companies, like KumfyTailz and Thunderworks

You can find the Jelly Wellies and Kruuse BUSTER raincoats that Lulu and Jasmine are wearing above on Amazon.

So tell us below -- do you think dogs need coats when it gets cold?

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Sunday, December 31, 2017

22 Things I don't want to forget about Galadriel, my cat

Me and Galadriel in 2016.

1. We found her at PetSmart in 2004. My brother, my roommate at the time, wanted a cat, so we went to check out the shelter cats. She was the only one that showed any real attention to us. She rubbed back and forth against the bars of the cage. When they took her out for us to meet, she was so friendly that we took her on the spot.

For two weeks after she tried to escape.

2. Galadriel would bite your nose if you picked her up. She stare at you with her big yellow green eyes, reach up close, and then chomp down on your nose. Or your chin, if she was so inclined. Could never figure out why she did it.

3. She liked to sit in the sink.

4. She had the oddest way of drinking water. Firstly, it was rare to ever see her drink water to begin with. But when she did, she often would dip her paw in the water and lick it instead of going right in the dish.

5. I bought her toys. I bought her beds. I won fancy cat stuff for her. She rarely if ever used any of it. Her favorite toys were my ponytail holders, the rings to milk cartons, and sometimes toys on a string. She preferred to lay on scratch pads, baby blankets, and over the last six months one particular dining room chair cushion.

6. I will never be able to get her fur out of my favorite chair.

7. We had these vaulted ceilings in one apartment, and these huge cabinets in the kitchen -- so huge I never used them. One day I found her chillaxing on the top of the cabinets. She would get on the counter and jump to the top of the cabinet and just lay there for hours.

Not the cabinets -- this was the cabinet in the garage of the house in the last couple years.
No idea how she ever got up here.
8. When she was older, she had trouble jumping even onto countertops. I bought her a cat tree so that she could make easy steps to the counter in my bedroom. She refused to use it.

9. She was messy. She was messy eating. She was messy in the cat pan. I cleaned the cat pan and replaced the litter one day. When I came home I found litter all over the bathroom floor. AND I MEAN all over.

10. She liked to think she was a tough kitty. If you got in her way, she made sure to let you know -- either vocally or physically.

11. She had this habit of sitting in doorways and as people walked by in a way she didn't like, she'd take a swing at your leg. She got more than a few people that way.

12. Galadriel never touched people food, ever -- until Koko, my oldest cat died in 2011. Then all of a sudden she loved human food.

13. In 2011, my apartment was broken into. Galadriel, who was normally fearless with strangers, all of a sudden hid from men -- like the men who fixed my broken window, or the friend who came by to help me. But she also never left my side. She was my comforter for weeks after -- or I was hers.

14. The dogs were usually afraid of her in the beginning. More than once in the early months, Lulu would not pass her for fear she'd take a swipe at her. And right up until the end, Cappy would refuse to walk past her.

15. There was only one dog unafraid of Galadriel. That was Jasmine. Galadriel would pick fights, and Jasmine would fight back. They had a few epic fights. But in the end, the two of them were very sweet to each other.

16. She loved to be outside. Every once in a while I would let her sit on the lanai with the dogs. She would sun herself and roll on the ground. I didn't let her go out all the time. But when I did it was a treat.

17. Galadriel had better recall than the dogs, who I had trained to come when called.

18. Galadriel never learned to boop heads. No matter how hard I tried. I wish she had.

19. She had the softest fur. And silky.

20. People said I had matched my pets. It was never my attention. But yeah, I had tri-color pets, but Galadriel was first.

21. She was beautiful. Even when her jaw was broken and crooked. She was beautiful.

22. And even though she didn't start out as mine, she surely was in the end.

On Thursday, Dec. 21, Galadriel went to the Rainbow Bridge. Sleep well kitty.

A painting I did a while back of Galadriel with my heart cat, Koko. They're both forever in my heart now.

Saturday, December 23, 2017

Countdown to Christmas Day 5: New colorful Le Bol dishes from Loving Pets

We're counting down to Christmas!

Christmas is only a couple days away and we can't wait, how about you guys? We're pulling out all of our Christmas stuff, and we're excited about these new pet dishes we got from Loving Pets. Check out the Le Bol series, and enter to win a set of them!
DISCLOSURE: All prizes and review samples in Lulu's Countdown to Christmas Giveaway were provided for free, but no other compensation was provided. All opinions are my own.