Friday, October 20, 2017

How to touch: Hand targeting with your dog -- a Trick or Treat Giveaway Blog Hop

Halloween is coming up fast! Who is ready to trick or treat?

We've joined up with Kol's Notes, Beagles and Bargains and more of your favorite pet bloggers for this year's Trick or Treat Giveaway Blog Hop!

We've got a great trick to show you -- and after you see our trick, you'll have a chance to enter to win prizes -- including a $300 PetSmart gift card!

DISCLOSURE: The Trick or Treat Giveaway Hop is sponsored by CleverPet, The Honest Kitchen, Planet Dog, and Health Extension. The opinions and ideas in this post are my own and are uninfluenced by any other person or business. The individual sponsors are responsible for their giveaway prizes including shipping.

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

4 Halloween goodies dogs should be scared of (but aren't!)

It's Halloween, which means there will likely be copious amounts of junk food coming into your home over the next few days (because even if you don't have kids I bet at least a third of you will raid the candy aisle during the Halloween clearance sales, amirite?)

But there are some goodies out there that can be a nightmare for you and your dog if he or she breaks into them.

So lets spread the word and remind our friends and family what NOT to leave out this week -- or all year long. This is with the help of
4 Halloween treats dogs shouldn't have: chocolate, nuts, xylitol and raisins

Sunday, October 15, 2017

Apopka's Club Lake Plantation full of dog-friendly fall fun

Looking for some fall fun with your pet. This feature I wrote for Barkpost has some great fall/Halloween activities you can do with your dog. 25 of them, in fact.
And for us Central Floridians, this great month-long festival is going on right now!

Lulu had a blast exploring Club Lake Plantation in Apopka, near Orlando.

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

How to make an easy skirt for your dog this Halloween

I'm not big on costumes, but there is something amusing about a dog in a puffy skirt (like a tutu).

So when I had to come up with a Tinker Bell, I knew I needed a skirt. But I couldn't find one in the stores, and I didn't want to buy one online.

Turns out making a skirt is pretty easy!

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

What Hurricane Irma taught me about dogs, disasters

It's 2 a.m. and 89 degrees in the house. I'm stripped down to my underwear, "The Crown" on my tablet to try and distract me from my discomfort at the heat and humidity, the darkness and the otherwise silence of my powerless home.

What I can't distract myself from is the sound of Lulu's breathing.

It's faster than usual, and her chest is heaving up and down quickly. She's not panting, just breathing heavily.

I rub her chest and "arm pits" with a damp rag in the hope of keeping her comfortable.

Jasmine tries to stay cool. She handled the lack of AC better than Lulu.
But I'm resolved. Tomorrow, they all go to my parents' house, even if I hate to do an overnight trip and rush back to work.

Their discomfort is more upsetting to me than anything else about this situation. It's early Thursday morning, Sept. 14. I've been without power since Sunday, Sept. 10, when Hurricane Irma hit Orlando and the rest of Florida.

And I won't have power again until Sept. 19.
Keeping the dogs cool was tougher without power.
Lulu poolside two days after Hurricane Irma. Debris could be cleaned out, but without power I had no filter for over a week. The pool turned quite green.
I'm lucky, I really am. There are people in Florida and Texas and Louisiana and the Caribbean who have it a lot worse. One beagle breeder friend in South Florida had to leave a flooded home. Other friends waited for days before they heard from loved ones in Puerto Rico.

But I learned a lot about myself, and about dogs, in a disaster, in the days after Hurricane Irma.

DISCLOSURE: I received Fresh Wave and One Fur All products from those companies. I received no monetary compensation for this post. All opinions are my own.

Monday, August 21, 2017

Solar eclipse and pets: Scientists want your help

Everyone is so excited about the solar eclipse today.

And online there are some saying keep your dog in the house, some are saying you don't need to because they won't look at the sun anyway.

Scientists are very interested, however, in how your pets will react in general.
Download the iNaturalist app and help them better understand how animals react to an eclipse.

It's called the Life Responds project, and scientists at the California Academy of Science want your help.

Friday, August 18, 2017

3 ways you can help Clear the Shelters when you can't foster, adopt

Saturday, Aug. 19 is Clear the Shelters Day!

Thousands of shelters in the United States are currently full of pets looking for homes -- it's a big summer problem. And it will take all of us to help reduce the pet population in our shelters.

When you adopt a pet, you actually rescue two -- the one you adopt, and the one that can take its place so it is not killed.
Buster is a 4-year-old beagle at Orange County Animal Services in Orlando, FL. He is heartworm positive, but his treatments are sponsored.
Ideally, we'd all love to run out and adopt every pet who needs a home. But that's not feasible. Still, there are ways you can help #ClearTheShelters today and everyday. Here are three:

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Help your dog handle a new school year: Jones Natural Chews review + giveaway

UPDATE: Just to make it clear, to be qualified to enter, you MUST leave a comment in the comment section at the end of the blog AND enter the Rafflecopter widget by confirming that you left a comment. I see some people have entered the Rafflecopter widget by saying they left a comment... but didn't leave a comment. Please do so.

It's tough to imagine the summer is almost over and children are going back to school.

That means a rush of shopping, getting kids back to a bed routine, maybe a doctor visit or two, maybe even one last trip somewhere fun. 

But dogs are creatures of habit. And after a relaxing summer with their best friends, the new school year up-ends their peaceful existence. So lets help them adjust!

And one way is to use long-lasting chews that they can keep busy and relieve stress with. That's why we're partnering with Jones Natural Chews to help.

A bone can help your dog adjust to the kids going back to school.

We're giving 2 people a set of great Jones Natural Chews center bones to get you started.

DISCLOSURE: This post is sponsored by Jones Natural Chews. But all of the opinions and information are our own.

Saturday, July 8, 2017

5 great reasons your dog needs water plus PetSafe fountain review

DISCLOSURE: This post includes a review of the PetSafe® Brand Drinkwell® Outdoor Pet Dog Fountain. PetSafe provided a fountain to review, and one to giveaway, but no other compensation. Any opinions in this post are my own.

July is Pet Hydration Month. Can you guess why?

You know your dog needs clean water daily. But do you know how much? And do you know the signs if your dog is dehydrated?

Here are 5 reasons your dog needs to have clean drinking water all day long, and especially in the summer.

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

K9s for Warriors save veterans, dogs: Tour the campus and learn how to help

We celebrate freedom in America, but as we always say -- freedom isn't free. The problem is, the people who pay that price for us often pay more than we can possibly imagine. Even if they are not hurt in body, many are wounded in mind and spirit.

At least 20 veterans commit suicide every day, according to estimates by the Veterans Administration.

1 in 5 veterans suffer from post-traumatic stress.

A wonderful organization in Florida is saving not only the lives of veterans, but the lives of rescue dogs as well.

K9s for Warriors saves veterans and dogs.
K9s for Warriors accomplishes this mission through the help of donors and volunteers and at a facility that's not unlike a homey camp.

And I got to tour it recently, one day before a new class of veterans arrived.

DISCLOSURE: Merrick Pet Care helped set up this tour of the K9s for Warriors campus. They are a proud sponsor of K9s for Warriors. I did not receive any monetary compensation for the post, and all my opinions are my own.

Monday, June 26, 2017

How CBD dog treats from Treatibles can ease summer stress

What summer means for you is not everything it means to your dog.

To you, summer means cookouts, beach visits, freaking heat, the Fourth of July.

To your dog it means lots of human activity, staying home alone, lightning and thunder summer storms, the Fourth of July's fireworks.

Now any dog can get a little stressed in summer, but if your dog is like my Jasmine, you know summer can be an extremely tough time.

So lets talk about ways you can help your dog all summer long, and using Treatibles® CBD Pet Chews to help your pet combat summer stress.

DISCLOSURE: This post is sponsored by Treatibles CBD Pet Chews, but all opinions about the product are mine.

Saturday, June 24, 2017

Beagle Facts: Funny Twitter account you need to follow

Here at Life With Beagle, we post lots of beagle facts:

We've posted on the beagle anatomy from nose to tail.

We've posted on the distinct sounds beagles make.

And we post about all sorts of beagle health problems.

But we've never posted facts like this:

Monday, June 5, 2017

Who is Megan Leavey: Real-life hero story about Marine and her K-9

Right now everyone is all about "Wonder Woman," and with good reason. She's a superpowered super hero with 75 years of history, and her film is a critical and commercial success so far.

But she's not the only female hero leading a movie in the summer of 2017.

Meet Megan Leavey.

The poster for 'Megan Leavey,' about a Marine and her K-9.

DISCLOSURE: I saw the below featurette at BlogPaws 2017 in Myrtle Beach, SC, which was sponsored by Merrick Pet Care, a proud supporter of "Megan Leavey."  Merrick Pet Care is a proud sponsor of BlogPaws. However, I did not receive any payment for this post.

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

How to tell if your dog has dog flu, and 7 other facts

In 2015, a newly-seen strain of dog flu shut down doggy day cares and left pet parks empty in Chicago.

The H3N2, largely seen in Asia, sickened hundreds of dogs in Chicago and made its way across the country. 

Now it's in Florida. 

University of Florida vets say they are caring for a dozen confirmed cases of H3N2 dog flu, with six more cases pending test results. 

How do I tell if my dog has the H3N2 dog flu? What does H3N2 dog flu do to my dog? And should I get the vaccine? We try to answer some of your questions.

What you need to know about dog flu to protect your pet.

Sunday, April 30, 2017

7 ways dogs are the prescription for PTSD, heart health, more

May is National Pet Month!

Seems like the perfect month to celebrate the Human-Animal Bond. And why the science says a pet is a great prescription for better human health. They even have a whole commercial for this medication.

Friday, April 28, 2017

Thongs, couches and light bulbs: Crazy things dogs will eat

Lulu once ate (or tried to eat) a burrito full of ants.

I was walking her in my old apartment complex. Now normally, I try to keep a weather eye out to make sure Lulu doesn't get anything she's not supposed to. But I missed this burrito. She grabbed it before I had the chance. And then she dropped it, scrunched up her nose and pawed at her mouth as a million ants poured out of the wrap.

Lulu has eaten some crazy things in her time.

I wish I could say that ended her habit of grabbing things off the sidewalk.

Now, we've all heard of dogs eating crazy things. Lulu and Jasmine have never really strayed from food, and cat poop -- including cat poop left by outdoor cats. SO GROSS!

I remember a story about a beagle in the Tampa area that ate money. 

This dog apparently ate stone -- 109 stones, to be precise! Vets have the Xrays to prove it! 

Sometimes dogs eat strange things because of a mineral deficiency, or pica. But some experts think dogs mouth objects out of curiosity. It may be a behavioral issue too. Here's some more info on that from VetStreet.

I asked our friends on Facebook and Twitter what the weird items their dogs ate were. And here are some of the responses.

Monday, April 17, 2017

Don't put the Easter eggs away! A nosework hunt for dogs

Hope you had a great Easter holiday! Did you do an Easter Egg Hunt? Well don't put those eggs away yet! We have a great activity that will help you get Easter going all year long, sponsored by Einstein Pets.

DISCLOSURE: Life With Beagle did not receive compensation for this post, and all thoughts are my own.

Sunday, April 9, 2017

Global Pet Expo: 9 dog products to watch in 2017

Another Global Pet Expo is in the books. We stumbled through over 7 miles of pet products over three days in March. Over 1,100 companies showed off thousands of products for dogs, cats, reptiles, fish, hamsters, birds, chickens, and more. 

Here are 9 of our favorite dog products from Global Pet Expo -- broken up into six trending product areas to watch in 2017.
Check out some of our favorite products from Global Pet Expo.

NEED TO KNOW: We did not get any compensation for this post. We did receive product samples, but all opinions here are our own.

Saturday, March 25, 2017

Natural Balance's quality: How good ingredients make good dog food #WeBelieveinNB

We've been talking about Natural Balance® for the last few months. We like the food for its Limited Ingredient Diets, its Buy With Confidence™ guarantee and its commitment to making sure you get the right food for your dog through its Nutritional Experts.

But here's another reason we love Natural Balance -- the premium quality ingredients.

Check out the ingredients inside Natural Balance LIDs.
This post is sponsored by Natural Balance and the BlogPaws Professional Pet Blogger Network. I am being compensated for helping to share our thoughts about why we believe in Natural Balance as a quality food for our (dog(s) or cat(s), Life With Beagle only shares information we feel is relevant to our readers. Natural Balance is not responsible for the content of this article. 

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

3 treat feeders to exercise a dog's body, mind

With Lulu still recovering from her cranial cruciate ligament surgery, strengthening her hind leg is important.

We've always used treat feeders to keep them busy, but they've taken on a new importance: physical exercise.

So here are our three favorites.

DISCLAIMER: I've received these feeders for free to review, but Life With Beagle received no payment for this post. All thoughts are our own.

The P.L.A.Y. Wobble Ball, the PetSafe Busy Buddy, The BUSTER DogMaze.

Thursday, March 9, 2017

How teaching my dog to swim helped her recover from surgery

Raise a virtual paw if your dog won't swim.

If you have a beagle, the answer is most likely yes.

I'm not sure why beagles seem to distrust water, but in my completely unscientific, anecdotal research, I've found most beagle owners can't even get their beagle to stand in a kiddie pool, let alone go for a swim.

But after Lulu's cruciate ligament tear and surgery, I decided I had to do something to help her recover faster. So despite my misgivings (I flat out told them I didn't think it would work!), I took Lulu for a swim.

A beagle can swim! How it helped her recover from surgery.

Monday, February 6, 2017

Why doesn't my dog like her food? My conversation with a Natural Balance nutrition expert #WeBelieveinNB

What do you do when you know you've bought good quality dog food and your dog just won't eat it?

A couple months ago we started talking about why we like Natural Balance® Limited Ingredient Diet.

But Lulu even after a week of mixing her food, she wouldn't eat the Natural Balance alone.

Not sure what I was doing wrong, I decided to ask an expert. Natural Balance is happy to oblige.

This post is sponsored by Natural Balance® and the BlogPaws® Professional Pet Blogger Network™. I am being compensated for helping to share our thoughts about why we believe in Natural Balance as a quality food for our (dog(s) or cat(s), Life With Beagle only shares information we feel is relevant to our readers. Natural Balance Pet Foods is not responsible for the content of this article.
Natural Balance's Nutrition Experts can help you troubleshoot your dog food.

Sunday, February 5, 2017

Call your congressman: USDA makes it harder to track puppy mills, animal experiments

Feb. 6 UPDATE: The Humane Society of the U.S. says it is taking steps to sue the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture for removing the APHIS database from the government website. Please read the full report here. 

Feb. 7 UPDATE: The USDA now says "adjustments may be made in the decision to remove animal welfare inspection reports from the APHIS website, the Associated Press is reporting.

Read the full story from AP here.

Learn more about why this issue is so important below.
I have never been political on this site, and I try very hard not to. 

But if there is one issue we can agree on, it's treating animals well and that was made harder up in Washington.

So now I'm asking that you take a moment to tell your Congressman and Senators that you don't agree with this move to remove USDA inspections and other enforcement information on animal facilities across the country.

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

My dog tore her cranial cruciate ligament: 5 things to remember

Lulu sat on the Vet's table, gingerly kicking out her right hind leg. She looked at me with the same big, sad eyes she employed to get treats.

After a week or two of not knowing what was wrong, of being frustrated and worried, I was finally overcome. I put my head on hers and cried.

Lulu waits at the vet for her diagnosis.
Lulu waits at the vet for her diagnosis.
Lulu had some obvious discomfort a week or two prior. I took her to a vet (not her primary, he was out of the office on a training day). They felt her spine, moved her legs, she showed no sign of pain. They diagnosed her with an upset tummy and prescribed an antibiotic, a probiotic and canned prescription food.

A week later, we were at her regular vet. She would walk, yelp and hold up her leg.

The vets moved her legs. They performed an X-ray. It was a tear of the cranial cruciate ligament.

A cranial cruciate ligament tear in a dog's leg.
A cranial cruciate ligament tear. Picture courtesy of Embrace Insurance.
I felt like I had failed my dog somehow. I kept going through in my mind what had led Lulu to tear a ligament. Had Jasmine been rough with her? Did I push her too hard? Why did I keep letting her jump on and off the bed or the couch or out of the car? Why didn't I make sure she had Glucosamine supplements daily?

And why hadn't I waited one more day and seen her primary vet initially?

I have had many people try to reassure me that I am not a bad dog mom. I remain unconvinced. But I hope this post will help put your mind at ease... and give you something to think about.