Puppy Hugger Review and Giveaway

Puppy Hugger Rocks Your Pets World with Comfy Goodness!

When the good folks at Puppy Hugger asked us to review their product, we had no idea what a wonderful experience it would be for our girls.

Chachala and Philomena on their custom Puppy Hugger Two's Company bed.

Chachala and Philomena on their custom Puppy Hugger Two’s Company bed.

 

The Puppy Hugger website, found at www.puppyhugger.com, contains tons of useful blankets, beds, liners, inserts and throws and other fuzzy comfy custom made items for your dog or cat. Their tag line is, “The Ultimate Snuggling Experience”, and we think our dogs agree.

 

One of the really cool features about the site, is each item is custom made to your specifications. You pick out the fabrics, front and back or liner and base, that match your décor and they will custom make the item to complement your environment.

 

Cha and Phil absolutely adore the “Two’s Company” bed the good folks at Puppy Hugger sent us. We picked out the fabrics and they were luscious!   This is one of those times you wish you were your pet! This bed is so snuggly and soft!

 

Our pups are pretty excited about their “Two’s Company”, Puppy Hugger bed. Your dog or cat will love a little snuggly something from this fab site! Check it out, you will be glad you did!

 

Puppy Hugger is giving away 2 x-small or small crate liners or one medium or large crate liner in a variety of colors for you to choose from.  Enter now for your chance to win.

 

 

Puppy Hugger Crate Pads come in a variety of colors

Puppy Hugger Crate Pads come in a variety of colors

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Pets Teach Us So Much Radio, 132 with Robbin and Joseph Everett

#1 pet podcast and pet radio show is rocking the airwaves!

Scheduled guest this week is dog trainer, Marc Elias.  He is going to teach us about reading a dog’s body language.  The segment should be super interesting!

Marc Elias

Marc Elias

 

Wow! Time is flying! We will see you on the air on  at 6:00 PM EST on Blog Talk Radio http://www.blogtalkradio.com/tppctv or you can catch us on iTunes, Stitcher or here on our blog.

Ermahgerd!

Ermahgerd!

How to Raise Multiple Dogs on a Budget in Our Economy

A few years ago, we adopted our first dog at an adoption event at a local pet store and a few days later, we adopted his sister.  Today, we’re the proud owners of 4 dogs and there are lots of laughs, lots of photo ops, and lots of responsibility.

More than one dog in your home can be fun, but expensive!

More than one dog in your home can be fun, but expensive!

Saving Money on Dog Training…

Dog training is important, because it helps us communicate our expectations with our dogs.  It’s also great for socialization, exercising their brains, and it gives our dogs something fun to do.  All in all, dog training leads to a happier home.

The chain pet stores charge $80-$110 for dog training, which may be out of your range when you have several dogs attending the class; but there are ways to save money.

  • We take 1 or 2 of our dogs to the class instead of all 4.
  • We ask about any unpublished deals or puppy packages.

You can also work with a local trainer.  They may be flexible with their prices and suggest a program that benefits all of our dogs – one on one, agility training, social hour, puppy classes, trick training and more.

Saving Money on Dog Food…

We feed our dog a raw food diet and quickly learned that pre-made raw in a multi dog home isn’t cheap.   A lot of reading and research went into the recipe we created for our dogs.  We went from spending over $450/month to less than $250/month on dog food when we switched from premade to homemade raw dog food.

Although I feed raw, I don’t look down my nose at families who feed kibble, because raw isn’t for everyone.

You can save money on kibble by shopping sales at local pet stores, joining frequent buyer programs, and signing up for your favorite brand’s newsletter to receive notification of sales.

My favorite way to save money is at anniversary sales.  There are two local pet stores that celebrate an anniversary and their sales that include BOGO (buy one, get one for half off) deals.

Saving Money on Dog Beds, Toys, and More….

When it comes to dog beds, I’ve found the best deals to be at Costco.  Recently, we decided to start making our own and went to a mattress store and asked for foam to be cut to a custom size, and then ordered a water proof liner and dog bed cover.  What we love about this option is that we could choose the thickness and strength of the foam interior.

2 of our dogs developed arthritis early so their beds need more support – to buy something like this at the store would cost over $100, by doing it ourselves, we spend a lot less and our dog beds will last a lot longer.

When it comes to dog toys, grooming products, and other supplies we need – we shop sales.  When I find something that works for us, I keep an eye out for discounts and stock up if the price is right.

Saving Our Sanity…

And finally, raising 4 dogs takes a lot of patience, cooperation and communication.  My boyfriend and I discuss the week’s plans every Monday morning as we get ready for work so that we know that our dogs’ care is covered for the week.

There are times when we’re stressed.  There are many conversations in the middle of the night that start with “do you think they’re awake?”  And vacations are a little more expensive, because we need to hire a pet sitter who can manage four dogs.  But every day we get a parade when we come home, every day we share a story of something special or funny one of the dogs did, and every day we know that we’re giving our dogs a great life, which isn’t even close to what they’re giving us.

Do you have any money saving tips to share for dog owners?

 

Author’s Bio: Kimberly Gauthier is the Fur Mom to 4 dogs and founder of Keep the Tail Wagging, an online magazine for dog lovers. She shares her experience raising dogs naturally while feeding raw. When she’s not laughing with her boyfriend or playing with her dogs, she can be found writing, taking pictures, reading, or watching movies.

5 Reasons Raw Feeding Groups Are So Mean

Kimberly Gauthier shares her experiences when feeding raw to her dogs. (Photo: Icanhashotdog.com)

Kimberly Gauthier shares her experiences when feeding raw to her dogs. (Photo: Icanhashotdog.com)

My name is Kimberly and I feed our dogs raw. We’ve been raw feeders for a year and I love it, but the road to becoming a raw feeding wasn’t easy, because once you raise the flag of interest, loads of people line up to give you their version of was a true raw food diet is for our dogs.

Thankfully, I was so interested in the raw diet for dogs that I didn’t mind doing my own homework. It took me months, but I was finally in a place where I was comfortable making the switch. My boyfriend wasn’t onboard, but he trusted me and we ditched the kibble; well 50% of it.

This is about when I joined my first raw feeding groups on Facebook. I was so excited to shout, I’M FEEDING RAW! I was actually feeding a partial raw diet as we transitioned our dogs from kibble. During the first week, this is what I heard…

  • Either feed all raw or don’t do it at all, you can’t dip your toe in it.
  • What’s the point of feeding raw if you’re just going to follow it up with Purina? (we feed Halo Purely for Pets)
  • You’re feeding premade raw? Do you know how dangerous that is? Your dog needs to eat whole meat!
  • You’re feeding vegetables? That’s just a filler and your dog doesn’t need it.
  • We’re appreciate it if you wouldn’t share diet tips that will kill dogs. (this was in response to me sharing a treat recipe that included yogurt)

As a person who abhors conflict, I was tempted to run from these groups. But I was there to learn, so I put on my big girl panties and tried to talk to these people who were there, allegedly, to help me.

I still ended up leaving a few of the groups, but there were 2 that have been tremendously helpful: Dogs and Cats Naturally and Raw Feeding Friends.

What’s with the drama?

If you would have asked me this a year ago, I would have told you that it was trolls with too much time on their hands. Today, I kind of understand.

  1. Vegetables or No Vegetables?

There are many ways to feed raw and everyone believes the way they chose is the right way; but the two main ways that I see most often are with vegetables and fruit, or without.

The belief is that fruits and vegetables have antioxidants and other goodies that benefit our dogs. Others believe that these are fillers and look to what wolves in the wild eat (which is also disagreed upon). We feed with vegetables and fruit, because that’s how our preferred brand makes it, the dogs love it, and they’re doing great.

  1. Dairy or No Dairy?

Dogs are lactose intolerant. So why do I see YouTube videos of people garnishing their dogs’ raw with a dollop of plain, fat free yogurt?

Our dogs are lactose intolerant. I gave them Himalayan chews once (they’re made from Yak’s milk) and they had gas and diarrhea all afternoon. But we do give our dogs plain, fat free yogurt (in a treat recipe a couple times a year) and they get raw goat’s milk (which has less lactose than cow’s milk).

  1. Dog Owners Who Take Short Cuts

This is the one that drives me batty. I occasionally get an email from someone who wants me to give them details of our dogs’ diet so that they can feed their dogs raw. “And by the way, I’m starting tonight!”

Although I appreciate the enthusiasm, not all dogs are the same and I’m not a dog nutritionist. I spent months researching raw before switching. A year later, I’m finally comfortable with what we feed our dogs; but I’m learning new stuff daily.

If you want to feed raw, you have to put in the time. Too often I see a dog owner crying DANGER DANGER, WILL ROBINSON on raw food pages, because they fed their dog nothing but ground beef for several weeks and ended up with a hefty vet bill to bring their dog back from malnutrition. Stories like this feed the critics and raises fear in the dog lover community.

  1. Kibble is Death!

Yeah, I said it! I don’t believe it. Death Nuggets is another popular nickname for kibble. And some raw feeders don’t distinguish from Purina and Arcana; it’s all bad. In my opinion, many people switch to raw, because they had a sick dog, they lost a dog, or they’ve seen sick dogs and it’s been attributed to diet.

The rise in cancer, diabetes, and allergies in dogs over the years has been blamed on dog food; so many people believe that “kibble is death.”

  1. Some People are Just Mean

Social media breeds conflict, because there aren’t always consequences when we say mean things. I can fire of a nasty comment and the block someone and avoid witnessing the reaction. Even worse is when a group of people band together and create a nasty flash mob of negativity on a social networking page.

Raise the subject of politics, religion, or dog breeding and watch the fur (pun intended) fly. I admitted that I’m a fan of the ASPCA, but I don’t donate, because I’m not a fan of their commercials. My door prize was a mean, nasty troll.

If you want to learn more about feeding raw, you may have to put up with a little of the mean to get to the good. It’s this way with nearly any subject where you find passionate people. But there are groups that are amazing (Raw Dog Food Chat, Dogs and Cat’s Naturally). Still nervous? Then consider one of many raw feeding books and blogs that come with no judgment and a lot of information.

I’m still trying not to take things personally in our social media world. One thing that helps is to keep my eyes on the prize – the potential of a longer life with our dogs. A wagging tail trumps a nasty troll every day of the week.

Author’s Bio: Kimberly Gauthier is the Fur Mom to 4 dogs and founder of Keep the Tail Wagging, an online magazine for dog lovers. By sharing her experience as a dog mom to 4 pups, Kimberly hopes to help others make better choices for their dogs too. When she’s not laughing with her boyfriend or playing with her dogs, she can be found writing, taking pictures, reading, or watching movies.

Memorial Day, Remembering all who served 2 legged and 4

On this Memorial Day, we honor those who have served our country, both 2 legged and 4.  Thank you for your service to our country.  God bless you all and your families.

Lex at the grave of his handler

Lex at the grave of his handler. (Photo: thebarkpost.com)

 

From The Bark Post, “This amazing dog showed his loyalty and bravery in the midst of battle. While deployed in Fallujah with his handler, Cpl. Dustin Lee, the pair were struck by a mortar. Lee was fatally wounded in the attack. Lex, his faithful companion, was struck by shrapnel, but managed to crawl over to Lee and lie on top of him, protecting Lee until medics arrived. Other Marines reportedly had to pull Lex away so Lee could be attended.

Although some shrapnel remains in Lex’s body, he recovered. Lex was allowed to retire honorably and live out the rest of his days with Lee’s family, who adopted the heroic dog.”

West Coast Dog Scene with Robert Pregulman

****TPPC.tv’s Pets Teach Us So Much Blog and Radio Show welcomes Seattle Dog Spot’s talented creator and blogger Robert Pregulman.  Robert is Seattle based and will be giving us updates on all things dog happening on the west coast such as places to bring your dog including restaurants, dog parks, hotels and more.  He is a great writer and we are looking forward to learning more about the West Coast Dog Scene! ****

 

Hi, fellow dog lovers! I’m a new contributor to TPPC.TV and I’m going to be writing about the West Coast Dog Scene.

And make no mistake, there is a dog scene out here.

I launched my website Seattle DogSpot a couple of years ago to be a source of everything dog for dog crazy folks in the Seattle area, but as I quickly learned, dog craziness isn’t limited to pet parents here – it has infected (in a good way) West Coast dog owners from Blaine, WA on the Canadian border to Imperial Beach, CA just above Mexico.

In fact, most of our cities – Seattle, Portland, San Francisco, Los Angeles and San Diego, and Carmel are consistently ranked on Top 10 lists of the most dog friendly cities in the US.

While no one has ever conducted a scientific survey to explain we’re gaga about dogs out here, I have my theories:

Off-Leash Dog Parks – We have tons of them. Seattle has 14 off-leash dog parks within its city limits and several others in the area, including the 40-acre Marymoor Off-Leash Dog Park, also known as “Doggie Disneyland.” San Francisco has 18 of them. Los Angeles – 11 in the city, dozens more in the area. San Diego has 16. But all these pale in comparison to Portland, which has 32 off-leash dog parks.

Magnueson off-leash dog park in Seattle

Magnueson off-leash dog park in Seattle

Dog Friendly Businesses – We West Coasters can take our dogs virtually anywhere around town. Most restaurants, bars, stores (including Nordstrom’s), and cafes either allow dogs inside or on their patios. For example, half of BringFido.com’s list of the top 10 dog friendly restaurants in the world are on the West Coast.

Dining with our dogs at the Hog’s Beath Inn in Carmel, CA

Dining with our dogs at the Hog’s Beath Inn in Carmel, CA

Here in Seattle, the Belltown Pub is not just dog friendly – it also has a special menu for dogs. The Lucky Lab Brewing Co. in Portland has a laid back ambiance and a whole section dedicated to patrons with dogs. You can even make your dog’s day at Clint Eastwood’s Hog’s Breath Inn restaurant in Carmel, CA, which has a beautiful covered outdoor patio for you and your dog.

Dog Friendly Traveling – Out west we take our dogs with us on vacation because we are blessed with tons of hotels and resorts that welcome our pooches, and lots of them are pretty swanky. When we had some work done on our house we took our dog to the upscale W Hotel in downtown Seattle for a night where they got their own beds, and food/water bowls (with mats of course).

And I can personally attest to the fact that dog friendly accommodations stretch up and down the West Coast because we took our dogs to many of them on a 10-day road trip in the summer of 2012. Our trip included stops in Cannon Beach, OR,Carmel, CA, and Santa Barbara, CA.

Our dogs at Cannon Beach in Oregon.

Our dogs at Cannon Beach in Oregon.

We also discovered several remote, off-leash beaches with spectacular scenery along the coast in Oregon and California like the 7 Devil’s Recreation Site near Florence, OR and the Guala Point Regional Park in northern California.

I’m looking forward to writing more about dog friendly areas on the West Coast as well as covering other dog-related issue on TPPC.TV. I’ve listened to Robbin and Joseph’s podcast for awhile, and I’m thrilled about the opportunity to write on their website.

Adorable Video Time Suck-Seal Belly Rub

We know it’s kind of an advertisement for GoPro cameras…but gosh darn it…we want to go rub seal bellies now.  We swear that seal is smiling.  Brave diver too, don’t know if I would have my hand so close to a seal’s mouth.  Still, you gotta love seals because they are the dogs of the ocean in our opinion.

 

Reiki Healing for Fuzzy the Goat

 

Fuzzy the goat

Fuzzy the goat

Fuzzy is 9 months old, she came to the farm with her sister and brother who have both passed on. There are “goat mills” here, just like puppy mills. Fuzzy was owned by young children who got tired of him after 2 weeks. They all came to the farm and as time went on his siblings got sick and passed. The other goats bully her, so she hangs out with another goat and they live with the horses. She is SO friendly and very involved in everyone and every horse. She really loves people.

Fuzzy wonders if others have souls in the wrong bodies. Fuzzy is not absolutely sure if Fuzzy should be inside this goat body because Fuzzy doesn’t even speak goat. Maybe this is why fuzzy has such an easy time connecting and communicating to people, horses and others. These are just side notes for your deliberation. Fuzzy is able to feel the vibration of the healing energy and has been able to direct it to several in need. Some hide their pain deep inside but detective Fuzzy has been able to seek them out and with love and kindness help. Fuzzy is very happy being the healer because its a nicer title than a goat.

Love the feedback for Fuzzy and so very happy she is happier! We got this the day of the interview:

OMG, you are going to LOVE this! Fuzzy is so sweet. Today she was very calm, it is like she has learned how to re-focus her energy. She was lying down and looked like she was in bliss during her reiki session this morning. I got a great picture that I will send you of her chilling out during her session. She reminds me of how Rudy was…very excited in the beginning and now she can be calm and focus as well!

Fuzzy is SO cute and funny! Every time she sees someone, she puts her front paws on them and kisses them! She seems to have even more energy and joy than she did before! She runs around and tries to be involved with everyone and everything all at the same time.

Popular Pet Radio Show, Pets Teach Us So Much 131 with Robbin and Joseph Everett

 

 

The most popular pet podcast on the planet, #1 rated Pets Teach Us So Much with Robbin and Joseph Everett is ready to rock the house with a fabulous show planned for May 22.

Val Silver and her dog, Teddy

Val Silver and her dog, Teddy

Author Val Silver joins us to discuss her fabulous Book,Rescue Me: Tales of Rescuing the Dogs Who Became Our Teachers, Healers, and Always Faithful Friends

Rescue Me, by Val Silver

Rescue Me, by Val Silver

Plus, we have our usual mayhem and news from around the world! Join us May 22 at 6:00 PM EST live on http://www.blogtalkradio.com/tppc.tv or download anytime thought iTunes or Stitcher.

About Our Guest:

Val Silver lives in northern New York with her husband and Bichon/Shi Tzu mix, Teddy. She is a lifelong animal lover and advocate with a heart for animals and humans in need of compassion and healing. She wrote her first book, Rescue Me: Tales of Rescuing the Dogs Who Became Our Teachers, Healers, and Always Faithful Friends , as a fundraiser for homeless dogs, to raise awareness of their plight and needs, and to show what wonderful companions these dogs make when given a chance. Val is a reading teacher, healer, and holistic wellness educator. She believes that it takes education, positive action, and compassion to create better lives for all creatures-animal and human. Val shares her knowledge and insights on her websites and facebook pages, in on-line groups, in her monthly Bellesprit magazine column, and in the media.

 

Rob and Marisol Thomas’ Sidewalk Angels Foundation Saves More Lives

Rob and Marisol Thomas’ Sidewalk Angels Foundation Saves More Lives

Rob and Marisol Thomas (Photo: newshopper.suleka.com)

Rob and Marisol Thomas (Photo: newshopper.suleka.com)

Pets Alive Sanctuary Ribbon Cutting Ceremony
Kicks Off Farm Animal Program Rejuvenation and Expansion
Middletown, NY- 5/19/2014- Saturday, May 17, 2014 was a joyous and meaningful day at Pets Alive Animal Sanctuary in Middletown, NY. The no-kill rescue brought together nearly 50 of its closest supporters in an intimate ribbon cutting ceremony marking the opening of two new handcrafted barns donated by Rob and Marisol Thomas’ Sidewalk Angels Foundation. The rescue, which has been operating for nearly 35 years, has a rich history in providing safe haven to abused and neglected horses and other farm animals. “This gift is crucial to our ability to save more horses than ever before and we could not be more grateful to the Thomases for making it possible,” Jen Cutler, Pets Alive CEO. Cutler also noted that Pets Alive is one of the first rescues to provide sanctuary to New York City Carriage horses and they continue to be a resource to the many organizations working to end the abusive carriage horse industry.

The new barns are the first step in growing the Pets Alive Sanctuary Farm Animal Program. “Many of our guys have specific needs. We have a knowledgeable staff and the ability to deal with these delicate issues. Most equine and farm animal sanctuaries are full and have difficulty finding adoptive homes. Last year we adopted out 5 horses and 5 pigs while also rescuing 7 horses and 6 goats from neglect cases. I am very excited, with the donation of these beautiful barns, to kickoff off a rejuvenation of the farm at Pets Alive,” Cindy O’Brien, Pets Alive Farm Animal Manager. The animal rescue is now launching a campaign (www.petcaring.com/petsalivebarn) to raise the additional funds necessary for the expansion project. A $27,000 goal has been set and the organization is hopeful that it can reach this objective in the next six weeks.

Maria Maldonado, Sidewalk Angels Foundation Board Member and Pets Alive Board Member shared remarks on behalf of Rob and Marisol Thomas, “Pets Alive has been helping horses since they first opened their doors but their finances were stretched so thin with day to day operations of the entire sanctuary that they struggled to develop a structure that could allow them to do the work they truly wanted for the farm animals. We are hoping that these horse barns will be sturdy and strong enough to help their ability rise to the level of their passion.”

The ceremony which took place on Saturday, May 17, 2014 included a prayer at one of the site’s memorial gardens honoring those horses who have passed on while living at the facility and a blessing of the new barn and future animals who will find refuge at the sanctuary. After the touching and at times tearful service, the group took a tour of the current barn and paddocks where they met some of the farm animals currently living at the sanctuary and saw firsthand the achievements of the organization’s Farm Animal Program as well as the needs outlined in the rejuvenation and expansion plan.

More information about the Pets Alive Sanctuary Farm Animal Program Campaign please visit www.petcaring.com/petsalivebarn.
About Pets Alive
Pets Alive is one of the oldest and largest no kill organizations in the United States saving more than 2,000 animals each year. Pets Alive is internationally recognized as a leader in developing alliances to end the killing of and promote the humane treatment of companion animals. The mission of Pets Alive is to improve the lives of companion animals everywhere by any means possible, including rescue, adoption, advocacy, collaboration, intervention and education. Pets Alive operates three locations: Pets Alive Animal Sanctuary in Middletown, New York; Pets Alive Westchester in Elmsford, New York; and Pets Alive Puerto Rico in Utuado, PR. Pets Alive is a 501(c)(3) non-profit charity operating solely on individual donations, receiving no funding from city or state. For more information, please visit www.petsalive.org. To become a fan of Pets Alive on Facebook, go to www.facebook.com/petsalive. To follow Pets Alive on Twitter, go to www.twitter.com/petsalive.

About Sidewalk Angels Foundation
Sidewalk Angels Foundation is a New York-based, not-for-profit organization dedicated to providing critically needed funds and support to grassroots groups across the country. It is the primary supporter and sponsor of a number of no-kill animal shelters and animal rescues, reflecting the passion of the foundation’s co-founders to fight for the rights and fair treatment of those with no voice. Additionally, the foundation also supports a myriad of other causes, from childhood health and wellness to the fight against homelessness.

Established by singer-songwriter Rob Thomas and his wife Marisol in 2003, Sidewalk Angels Foundation functions like an umbrella organization that provides funds and resources to smaller local and regional entities that are doing vital work, but may lack the marketing and organizational clout and financial budgets to continue or expand their services. For more information, please visit www.sidewalkangelsfoundation.org.