Friday, June 3, 2011

Who loves coupons and deals?!

Nature's Variety - get a coupon just to try it for $3 off! 

Iceland Pure - purchase $45 worth of Iceland Pure and get FREE eco friendly water bottle

Halo Purely for Pets - $1.00 off Spot's Stew, $2.00 off any Supplement, $3 off and 6lb bag and more!

Petco - $5 off any purchase of $25 or more!

Petco - $5 off full service bath OR groom!

Wellness - $3 off dry dog food

ZiwiPeak - best deal I could find online for the 11lb bags! Buy from to get 11lb venison for $104.99 and use coupon code for free shipping: GP59BB1P
My dogs love this stuff so I am always looking how I can make it more cost effective since it's so pricey.

Canine Caviar - new customers get $2 off 14lb bag, $4 off 30b bag and BOGO 1.1lb bag!

I will update the list as I get more, TGIF :)

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Where O' Where have I been....

Fallen off the dog planet I suppose! It's been a busy year for me and the dogs. Buddy is busy doing therapy work with The Brody Project and Bernie passed his Delta test about 7 months ago and has done some sessions as well. So proud of my little guy!

I also got a great group shot that I have yet to share: 

Stay tuned lots more to share!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Mack Pack gets goodies.

My good pal Ericka gave the dogs a job. They had to test a new bed, Molly Mutt's Dog Duvet.  The great concept behind these stylish beds, is recycling. You stuff the netting bag that comes with duvet, with old clothes, blankets, towels, etc.  So far, the dogs seem to really love the bed. I love the pattern on it. My only tiny nitpick, is that the bed does not have that 'fluffy, stuffed' look. Maybe I need to fill it with more blankets and less clothes. I think the clothes make it look bunchy.

Friday, June 25, 2010

We DID it !!! Pet Therapy Team!!!

We have been so busy around here, sorry for the lack of posts! A few weekends ago, Buddy passed his Delta testing to be a certified animal therapy dog! We have been working very hard to get this completed so that Buddy can start his work. He will be doing Animal Assisted Therapy work at a very nice place in town. Buddy's calm, friendly and intuitive demeanor will make him a great asset to Delta. I couldn't be more proud! For more information on how to see if your dog has what it takes check out Delta's Website

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Bernie's teeth.

How to describe Bernie's breath? Tuna sandwich. Rotten bologna. My little dog has BIG mouth problems.
Even though I brush his teeth 4 times a week, it's still not enough to keep his teeth clean and breath fresh. I heard Yorkie's are notorious for small, crowded mouths that lead to bad teeth & breath, so can I blame it on  genetics? I make sure he has bones to chew, and he does chew nightly. Whether it's on a raw marrow bone, bully stick,  Merrick puffed snout, lamb ear, bison tendon, and the list goes on. Point is, what am I doing wrong? He chews, I brush, he got a professional cleaning not even a year ago! (July 17, 2009) and I give him Plaque Off (natural seaweed plaque fighter) on food in mornings.  I recently started brushing his teeth every morning, and I will say I am noticing a very slight improvement in  breath. I am going to schedule him another professional teeth cleaning and be adamant about brushing his teeth every morning and maybe every night. He is only 5 years old and I want him to have pearly whites for a long time.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Fun etsy dog finds of the day

I love this shabby chic inspired Elevated Pet Feeder

And how sweet is this vintage looking Pug dog poster

I love the look of these custom bar ID tags and those are the ones my sister ordered! They are even better in person. So unique and well made.

And even though it's not winter, I love looking at these Blossom Dog Hats from BeanTown, also check out her dog collar flowers, they are stunning!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Dog days of Summer

Here in hot steamy Florida, the days just keep getting hotter, muggier & rainier.  Temps reach in the upper 90's and feel like it's over 100 degrees out with the heat index. So what do we do to stay cool but still exercise?  I still take the dogs out every evening around 7pm, it's cooler then and I just keep our ball playing sessions down to 15-20 minutes. Then it's back in the house to cool down on the tile floors. I also fill their water bowls with fresh water and drop a few ice cubes in there.  On the weekends, we play in the pool for a few hours or go to dog beach or occasionally out on the boat. Walks are out unless we are up really early, and well getting up for work everyday at 7:30am is hard enough :)
What do you do in the hot summer with your dogs? Always be sure to provide cool water, shade and on light dogs, sunscreen! (yes they make it for dog!)

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Thundershirt update!

Bernie spazzes over the vacuum. Barking, chasing it, to the extent where he shakes and I have to crate him. This is bad, because I love to vacuum!  I put the thundershirt on him while vacuuming...hoping it would help. No such luck, he went on with his insane attack on the vacuum. Then, Sunday it rained, poured & thundered all day. I put the thundershirt on Bernie and he seemed much more relaxed. Finally, something that helps calm him during bad storms. He paced a little still and shook, but not near as bad as he used to.
And..he looks darn cute in it doesn't he?!

Run Run Rover!

Most dogs are not couch potatoes. They can become that way over time, with the help of their lazy or busy owner.  Big or small, purebred or mutt they all need to run, fetch, exercise and play. So just how MUCH exercise does your pooch need? For starters, take a look at their breed. Let's look at Border Collies, they are working dogs that are bred to herd sheep and run the fields.  A highly active dog like that should get at least 60 minutes of physical exercise a day.  Also consider age & climate, I wouldn't take my 5 year old cocker out for a long run in the middle of the hot summer. Whether it's playing ball, going for a walk or jog, dog park, playing frisbee, agility class or swimming, dogs need to burn energy and exercise for their physical and mental well-being.  My cocker spaniels will lay around and be very mellow all day if I wanted them to, but the minute I get out the ball or leashes, they get very excited to go out and walk or play.  I typically give them at least 30-45 minutes a day of exercise. 

So it's pouring rain all week, how can you tire your dog out now?
There are many indoor games that are mentally stimulating for your dog, such as Nina Ottosson's line of interactive toys that require your dogs to think and problem solve (yes, dogs DO problem solve).  Or any of the toys from the Busy Buddy line. You can also make up your own games to play. Play hide and seek inside, play ball inside, hide dog treats and teach your dog 'Find it' cue.  I play 'Sit & stay' games with my four dogs. Walking from one end of the house to the other, making them stay on the other end until I say 'Come!'. 

Why exercise my dog?
Well besides the positive health benefits it will bring YOU to be active, it will keep your dog fit, toned, overall healthier, less hyper-  which means less destructive,  and happy. 

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Thunder Phobia

Have I ever talked about Bernie's thunder phobia before? It seems the older he gets, the worse he gets when it rains and storms. It breaks my heart to see my usually fearless tyrant; shaking, panting, and very fearful. It started when he was about 2 years old, which is interesting that he never had any issues before the age of two.

I have tried classical conditioning with treats, and replaying thunder CD's and offering high value treats, and Bernie is too worked up to even touch or sniff what I have to offer.  I have also tried the DAP (dog appeasing pheromones) which is a plug-in that releases a pheromone scent of a lactating mother dog, this seems to help a little with him.  Next,  I tried Rescue Remedy for pets. Rescue Remedy is a mixture of   flower essences, that in homeopathic studies, have shown to reduce stress and anxiety. This also helped a little with the anxiety.  So as of right now when it storms, I put Bernie in his crate, with a blanket covering all but the front (so it's a safe little den) and wait out the storm. Some people say to pet your dog, some say not to coddle your dog, but neither petting Bernie or not petting Bernie has much of an effect on his behavior during a storm.

I am STILL searching for the right combination of methods to help Bernie during storms. I just ordered the 'ThunderShirt' that has been the new hot item that can help pets with anxiety and stress. The pressure from the wrap is supposed to help calm the dog during fearful situations. Dogs have an 85% improvement rate in anxiety, when wearing the ThunderShirt. I will be sure to give an update on how it works for Bernie.

For further great reading and a more profession opinion, check out what Patricia McConnell has to say about: Thunder Phobia

Update **on chlorine & animal health**

After talking with my holistic vet about my dogs and using the pool, she suggested if I let them swim in the chlorine, that I be sure to supplement them with Iodine.  She told me that chlorine pulls the iodine out of you & your dogs. So be sure to give them something rich in Iodine; such as Plaque Off (also works wonders with plaque and bad breath) Kelp & seaweed are also rich in natural Iodine. Definitely an interesting find in my chlorine safety research!

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

To swim or not to swim...Chlorine & our dogs

Any of you dogs out there water dogs? My chocolate & tan cocker spaniel, Reese is a water dog. She sees a pool, beach, or lake and cries and cries to go in. I take her to dog beach, and she swims her little heart out. And to my in-laws, who have a really nice salt water pool. Until now, I was never concerned with Chlorine. 
We just bought & moved into a house that has a beautiful, chlorine treated pool. We know we want to switch to the salt water pump, which will cost roughly $1,500 for us to make the switch. And a new roof comes before that, pooey. (to read more on how saltwater pumps in pools work, go here)
So I began reading up on the Chlorine we are putting in the pool to currently keep it clean and maintained.  Now let me just forewarn, am I over the top about my pets? Most will say yes. Will swimming in a chlorine pool kill your dog? No. But it can cause some serious health issues over time. 
Let's start by looking at what Chlorine is exactly. Chlorine is a natural gas, that under certain pressure & temperatures is turned into a liquid. It's most commonly used as a disinfectant in pools and water.  (yes, the amounts are regulated by the government of chlorine in your drinking water, and it's vital to ensure clean drinking water) a gas it can be very dangerous though. 
You can tell children not to drink the pool water and to keep their eyes closed while swimming, or wear goggles to protect them. But what about our pets? Dogs tend to want to drink pool water and ingest much of it when swimming, which can cause vomiting and diarrhea. Dogs ears, eyes, and nose are far more sensitive than ours.  Not to forget their skin,  and chlorine dries out their skin and coat
So is it bad for them? Yes, it can be. And in undiluted or large amounts, it can be toxic. But for those of you with chlorinated pools, who are not interested in changing to saltwater, you can lessen the amount of chemicals you put in your pool and make it a little safer for your pooch to swim.  Always give a bath after they get out of the pool, be sure to rinse eyes with clean water, and if they swim often, use a moisturizing conditioner on them after you shampoo.  

Friday, April 16, 2010

Our great Etsy finds of the day.....

Love ALL her stuff! Dawn is actually making me some custom cocker appliques!  She is so sweet & easy to deal with!

I also stumbled upon this super cute shop, with custom items...wouldn't you guess I am having a set of pot holders made with a cocker on them?  ((shock))   persnickety <3 pelican

Love etsy!!!!!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Busy Buddy = good doggie

When I need a break from the pups, to read, or get some cooking done...I give them something to occupy themselves, so they don't feel so neglected :)  Our newest toy, is the Busy Buddy Twist n' Treat.  
I buy the little Zukes training treats, or use some kibble, stuff it in there and whaaa-la! The dogs are happy, and occupied for a good 15-20 minutes. I was surprise how fast they got the concept too. Even my little yorkie-mix, Bernie was batting it all over the floor dashing when a treat fell out. After all the treats were out, he walked back into the kitchen & let out a little 'Rufff'. I think he was telling me to add more treats :)  Watch my dogs playing with theirs here: MackPack loves Twist n Treat

Monday, April 5, 2010

Dogs helping soldiers

We all know the great benefits of owning a pet. Now the government is starting to realize it.
Great write up on trained therapy dogs helping wounded soldiers.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Happy Yappy Easter!!!!

Easter means spring, jelly beans, eggs, candy, and great weather!
Happy Easter from my pack to yours!

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Pet industry BOOM

Pets are becoming more and more integrated parts of the family. They are no longer outside dogs that are secondary family members. They sleep inside (often in the same bed as us!) go on vacations with us, we dress them up, cook for them and more.
So it isn't shocking that Americans last year (2009) spent a whopping $45.5 BILLION on our pets. And that number is only growing. According to the 2009/2010 National Pet Owners Survey, 62% of U.S. households own a pet, which equates to 71.4 millions homes.
Pet ownership in the United States is broken down like this: (according to 2009-10 Nation pet Owners Survey

Number of U.S. Households that Own a Pet (millions)

Bird 6.0
Cat 38.2
Dog 45.6
Equine 3.9
Freshwater Fish 13.3
Saltwater Fish 0.7
Reptile 4.7
Small Animal 5.3

Total Number of Pets Owned in the U.S. (millions)

Bird 15.0
Cat 93.6
Dog 77.5
Equine 13.3
Freshwater Fish 171.7
Saltwater Fish 11.2
Reptile 13.6
Small Animal 15.9

Spending in 2010 is estimated to be $47.7 billion. The spending breakdown in 2009:

Food $17.56 billion
Supplies/OTC Medicine $10.41 billion
Vet Care $12.04 billion
Live animal purchases $2.16 billion
Pet Services: grooming & boarding $3.36 billion

What a great industry to have your hand in right now! Now if we could just shut down all those puppy mills :o)

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Warning! FDA investigating "Real Ham Bone" by Dynamic Pet Products

Several reports of this bone making dogs very sick, and crumbling easily.
One report, (RIP Dewey) did not make it :(
I rushed him to the vet where they found his core body temperature was 97 and his eyes were fixed and dialated. We elected to euthanize rather than allow his continued suffering. Dewey's body was sent to the state Lab for necropsy. Necropsy did not find any evidence of bone fragments (no kidding, he threw it all up). He had a diaphramic hernia which most likely was caused by the excessive vomiting caused by this product. No words can express the deep loss for my baby boy. He was the sidekick superhero of a little boy. He was a Field Champion and finished the 2008 coursing competition as #6 in the USA. He was a great ambassador for his breed and my best friend.

Read more at:

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Heartworm preventatives. Pros, cons & thoughts...

I hate bugs, worm, any type of parasite. But I hate chemicals and pumping my dogs full of toxins also. Is there a happy medium?
Someone recently asked me, 'Why do I feed my dogs home cooked, and grain free premium kibble, provide supplements, use natural products on them only, but still continue to give them a toxic heartgaurd plus chewable every month? I really cannot answer that question. I have so many thoughts running through my head about it. Is it worth the risk? To use more natural ways, but risk getting your dog infested with heartworms and going through that painful & expensive treatment? Or is it worse to administer an insecticide to your pet monthly? And WHY do I give my 5lb yorkie the same dosage I give my 23lb cocker spaniel? The 1lb-25lb range is HUGE and scary! So I have begun research, digging for info, and asking people in the dog community that I know, to share their opinions with me. More people than I ever imagined, just simply do NOT give their dog heartworm preventative in any form. Either they don't know about the dangers of the disease, or they are forgetful. They lady I buy my dog food from, swears she has not used it in years, and her dogs are fine. If you have a healthy dog, healthy immune system, it's less likely to get worms anyways.
So what is SO bad about the heartworm preventatives, here is what I dug up:

Most preventatives contain Ivermectin. It is a parasite drug that causes neurologic damage to the parasite, resulting in paralysis and death. Some breeds are MORE prone to Ivermectin Toxicity, such as: Collies, Australian shepherd Shetland sheepdogs, Old English sheepdogs and English sheepdogs. Some other side effects of the drug are: vomiting, diarrhea, possible allergic reaction, behavior changes, weakness, depression, Neurological Side Effects, respiratory changes, loss of balance and blindness.

Dr. Jeffrey Levy. DVM - Heartworm parasite is a source of great anxiety among dog caretakers. Thanks in large part to the scare tactics of many veterinarians in promoting preventive drugs, many people believe that contracting heartworms is the equivalent of a death sentence for their dogs. This is not true.

Stressing importance of a healthy immune system. Mosquitos are less likely to bite a healthy dog, and a healthy animals own strong defense system will fight off any worms that enter bloodstream. So what will WEAKEN your pets immune system? Low quality commercial dog food, stress, over vaccination, usage of chemicals and toxins on your pet, are just a few.

My holistic vet prescribed me: Heartworm Nosode, to use as an alternative. And stressed importance of exams every 6 months, fecal and blood to check for any parasites. Nosodes are defined as: Homeopathic remedies prepared from the infected tissue, disease discharge or casual organisms. This is as opposed to the use of a similimum.(A substance that created the same symptoms)

Check your area for Heartworm occurrences. I definitely wouldn't recommend stopping the usage of Heartworm preventatives to just anyone. You need to be diligent about your pets health, and it takes a lot of work. But if you love your pet, it's worth it.
Read more in depth about it here:

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Calling all chubby dogs!! by: the Mom lady

Eek! I admit it, I have a chubby dog. I never thought he was chubby, until my sister came over and said what a fattie he has turned into. Nice right? Now, chubby, is different than obese. Bernie, the should be 5lb yorkie mix, is chubby. For a while now, I was not sure what I was doing wrong. He is on Wellness Core (grain free, the reduced fat formula) plus home-cooked and loads of veggies, we walk a lot, and he gets healthy snacks in moderation! My sister, also happens to be a heath nut, very conscious of what she eats....and she asked my why I had so much fruit & bananas, 'they have too much sugar'. Ding ding ding! How could I forget? My dogs love fruit! And while I am sure some is ok, they probably get too much. Especially Bernie, at his size, eating about 1/4 of a banana every morning is not doing him any favors! Another fiance gives him cheese! Yes, cheese is his absolute favorite. If you say 'Cheese" he gets all crazy excited and runs to the kitchen. But a one ounce piece of cheese for a dog, is equal to a cheeseburger to us! Yikes. no more cheese please. So I will keep you all updated on his progress. We are sticking to his diet this time, more exercise, less treats, and no more bananas or fruit for a while.