Cold Weather and Your Dog

Cold Weather and Your Dog

If you’re like me, life is great if you can take you best friends everywhere with you, but it has to be a great idea for the dog too. What do I mean by that? Well, just because I would always be happiest if my dogs were with me, 24/7, that doesn’t always mean it’s the best thing for them and right now, just like in the summer, it might not always be the right time.

Sure, we go hiking almost everyday that I’m not at the fire station, but they’re fit dogs, with decent coats and even then, I’m always checking in to make sure they’re doing well. My “big guy” Rhylee, is a 10 year old, 42 lb. Heeler/Border Collie mix, even though he has a shorter coat, it’s pretty dense. That said, if we’re not moving constantly, he could get pretty cold up here in the northern part of the country and when we’re at the barn, I have to be even more cognizant of how the weather is affecting him because he’s not nearly as active there. That means that even in a heated indoor arena (40 F), I make sure he has a dog bed to keep him off the floor. Junebug, my 25 lb. VERY mixed breed J, has a full, thick, double coat and I’ve yet to see her get chilly, but I’m still always checking in with her, and she’s always the one that ends up on a trunk or table on the cold days at the barn (even with her perfectly nice bed on the ground). Rhylee has a great coat to wear on the chillier days, Junebug does too but mostly I put it on her so she feels included. If you have a smaller dog, I’d recommend a pretty good wardrobe for inclement weather, being closer to the ground does bring on a chill faster!

What both dogs have in common of course, are their paws, winter weather can wreak havoc on your pooches feet, so make sure they’re clean, not cracked and if you walk near salted roads, you absolutely have to clean those tootsies off when you get home. The salt, drier weather, cold air, and ice can cause cracks to form on the pads and that can lead to painful, bleeding paws. I’ve found that an application of coconut oil can work wonders on winter toes. Speaking of toes, Junebug’s are pretty fluffy, if your dog collects snowballs in between their toes, I’m sure you’ve noticed how painful that can be. A little careful clipping of the fluff and an application of that good old coconut oil can fix that problem right up!

Please give your dogs and cats a warm, safe place to live in your home, they aren’t equipped to survive the winter outside! They’re domestic pets, not the wild creatures they once were. See you next time with some more winter tips for happy dogs!

 

Springtime Water Safety for Dogs

So, at last it’s spring! The almost all of the snow has melted in our mountain town and across the country, people are getting out more and enjoying the warmth and sunshine. But don’t forget that along with warmth and snow melting, comes higher rivers and even flooding in some areas. Add to that, the fact that not all of the ice has melted in some colder places, you have a potentially dangerous situation that could affect you and your dog.

We all want to take to the trails and hike, now that we can get around easier and the weather has changed, but before you head out, whether it’s for a little stroll around your neighborhood, or a hike in the woods, make sure you can control your dog and that you keep your eyes and ears open at all times.

There are two issues you need to keep on your mind in order to keep your dog safe and yourself too; fast, deep waters and weak ice.

Fast rivers and streams can deceive the most careful pet owner, simply because you might not think that your dog would head into something flowing that hard, but not only is that not the case, a lot of dogs head down to the water’s edge and fall in. Some dogs just don’t judge the velocity and jump on in because that’s what they did last summer, and then they find themselves in a lot of trouble. The fast moving water isn’t really the problem; it’s the objects in the water that can cause the hazards. Strainers are obstacles in the water that water can flow through and over but you (and your dog) can’t, causing the swimmer to be pushed up against or under them. Not all strainers are visible above the water, but the most common are logs and trees. Another hazard is a hydraulic (or Maytag or washer). When the water flows over an object, it creates a strong churning on the other side that is like a recycling motion, continuously pulling the swimmer back under water.

No matter what the obstacle, you need to be constantly on the alert and keep your dogs away from the edge of fast moving rivers and streams, and don’t forget, they can slip in just as easily as the rest of us, so keep them away.

Many people are aware of the dangers of ice breaking and someone falling through, and this isn’t any different for animals. Sadly, we’ve been involved in several ice rescues of pets and very often, we were too late to help. Right about now, some bodies of water can still be ice covered and look just fine to a pet, but the ice can easily break, causing them to fall in and most likely under, some intact ice.

All of these water hazards have 2 things in common; they can kill your dog, and they can kill you when you try to rescue them.

So in conclusion, please prevent the problem by watching your dogs carefully and monitoring the conditions around you while you’re out and about in this beautiful weather. Let’s all make this a safe and fun spring!

Dog Park Clean Up

This past Saturday was a great event for event patrons of the Warm Springs “Dog Park” in Ketchum Idaho.

Clean up crew

For those of you who aren’t familiar with this location, the “Dog Park” lies on the former site of a golf course and restaurant. It also happens to be located on some of the most beautiful acreage you’re likely to see. It looks far more like the rolling lawns of a huge estate and yes, we get to walk our dogs on this!
Having been to dog parks across the country, I’m sure most of us are aware of the huge range in quality you can find on any given stretch of open ground that’s been designated as a place for dogs to meet, greet, run and play. That said; you’ve never seen anything like this. And even though you could say that those of us who live out here amongst some of the most beautiful wild places to hike, ski, bike, run and fish are just about the luckiest people around, (you’d be correct), we are like anyone else in that sometimes (OK a lot of the time), you need to be able to let your dog run and play without it being a long excursion into the back country. Enter the ‘Dog Park” to end all dog parks. Now my readers will know that I’ve been a dedicated traveler and blogger about pet friendly places, hotels, trips and so on, and you’ve seen and heard about some of the better and some of the could-do-a-lot-better dog spots around. This spot is far and beyond the nicest place you’ll ever stroll and it’s right in town.
Privately owned and maintained, the Warm Springs Ranch is also home to a vibrant Frisbee golf community as well.

Stick 'em up

Stick ’em up

On any given day, you’ll also see someone practicing Tai Chi, 5 or 10 dogs madly chasing each other, balls or squirrels (although oddly enough, NOT the Frisbess) as well as a few people just stretching their legs on their lunch break.

As the “park” grew in popularity however, some problems grew along with it, namely dog waste. It seems that some were taking advantage of the generosity of the property owner and the hard work of the property manager and not bothering to pick up after their pooches. To be fair, there was also evidence of some teenager partying going on as well. As the problem grew, signs were posted warning people to be responsible or else the area would be closed off to the public. This led to AllHailtheDog.com and Idahound Dog Food Company to arrange a park clean-up party. We’re happy to say that not only was the clean-up effort successful, but a lot of fun was had with a dog trick contest and some dog and dog people socializing.
Did I mention that even people without dogs showed up to help? Yep, it was that much fun, in fact the winner of the Most Poop Collected category was a mom and her young son and they don’t even own a dog!

Winner!

Winner!

Another winner was a very young girl and her pound dog Chihuahua mix Heidi. After a fabulous performance of dancing in a circle on her hind legs and rolling over, these two took home the grand prize of Idahound dog treats, Sun Valley Mustard gift pack and an All Hail the dog cozy dog bed.
All participants received a delicious bag of Sun Valley Mustard Pretzel Chips, generously donated for the event along with fresh baked chocolate chip cookies from a local restaurant Perry’s and coffee from Starbucks, also donated.

Our other trick contest winners also took home schwag from

All Hail the Dog, treats from Idahound and Sun Valley Mustard gift packs.
One other good thing that came out of this fun day in the “park” was a “Park Manners List”. All of the attendees wrote down their ideas for a clean, fun and polite dog park experience and that list will be printed out and displayed at the “park”. We’ll be posting that list for our readers as well; you can take it as is to your local park or add to it and let us all know what else you came up with. Until then, have fun and “doo” the right thing!

DNA Contest Winner

dirty diesel

 

We have a contest winner for the Diesel DNA Contest and I have to tell you, it was the toughest one to date. (Even as I write this, we’re gearing up for another).

When the results came in we were all flabbergasted, well, that and confused. That’s because none of us had ever heard of one of the breeds, which immediately started up a flurry of research. I’m happy to say that not only did we achieve one of our goals here at adogslifereview.com, pet rescue awareness, we also had our generous dog-parent and contest voter Donna, donate the dog bed she won to a needy dog.

So, here was the issue; we had a TON of great votes, but we had a truly unique DNA result, so in order to designate a winner, we had to get down to the more obscure bits of DNA. This is because the ancestry of the main breed is also a little up in the air. Diesel came back as mostly Australian Koolie and a Kuvasz with a smaller percentage as “mixed breed”. Now you may remember that we received a lot of Australian Cattle dog & Heeler votes and it took a while to break down the Koolie heritage before we could determine that the Cattle Dog connection wasn’t strong enough for a wining vote, in addition, not a single vote even came close to the Kuvasz connection, so that meant we had to go to the “mixed breed” portion of the Diesel dog’s test results. You see, if you order up one of these awesome fun tests, you get back an enormous amount of information. This includes not only the main breeds related to your dog, but the smaller DNA hits that are bunched into the “mixed breed” section. In Diesel’s case, those results came back as Greater Swiss Mountain Dog, Papillion, Doberman, Australian Cattle Dog and, wait for it…..Boxer! And it was the boxer vote that put our girl Donna in the winner’s circle! She voted Australian Cattle Dog, Aussie Shepherd, Dalmatian and Boxer! Donna wrote in her vote that if she won, she wanted the bed to go to a cold, needy dog in Idaho, since her pampered pooch Molly lives in the temperate climes of Arizona and snoozes with the best of the on her Tempur-Pedic bed.

The story of the Koolie is an interesting one; a talented and intelligent working dog whose ancestors came to Australia with the sheep they were herding. The story of whether they came from England or Germany remains a bit of a mystery. One thing that isn’t a mystery however, is the good science our dog loving friends down under use to keep the breed strong, smart and healthy; responsible breeding without ridiculous standards for appearance. Something American breeders and the AKC could learn from.

The other side to Diesel’s relatives is the Kuvasz; a large and very old breed from Hungary, by way of Tibet, the Kuvasz was used as a guard dog and large game hunter, some traits that Diesel had shown too. The Kuvasz is related to the Great Pyrenees, a very popular sheep guard dog out here in Idaho. Diesel has exhibited a lot of Koolie traits as well, high energy, excellent mental stimulation, agile and able to develop strong family relationships.

Anyway you look at it Diesel is a great example of a rescue success story as well as the countless benefits that come with mixed breed dogs and adoption. Stay tuned for our search for a chilly, needy dog in our area, I’ll be enlisting the help of the Animal Shelter of The Wood River Valley as well as local law enforcement to help me find a dog who could use a bed…..anyone want to donate a dog house? J

A Dog’s Identity

What Am I?

What Am I?

 

Diesel’s DNA test results are in and we’re excitedly waiting to tally the results. So if you haven’t voted yet, get to work, because the contest closes at midnight December 20th and you still have a chance to win an awesome, planet friendly and gorgeous dog bed for your pet AND for the animal charity of your choice! That’s right, not one but two beds. The results came in yesterday and they were enlightening, to say the least. Looking back on Junebug’s DNA contest (check the blog archives) it was really up in the air and people’s guesses reflected that, this time around however, we’re seeing more similar guesses, so it’s going to be down to who guessed the closest match and then entered their vote the soonest.

These DNA contests are really fun for everyone at adogslifereview.com and allahilthedog.com, but they also highlight the cause nearest and dearest to our hearts; animal rescue and adoption. It’s a cause we never tire of educating our readers about, advocating for and promoting on our sites. This time of year, when people’s thoughts are a little more focused on doing good things for those around them, we want to remind our readers to Adopt, Don’t Shop. And while we all know the joys of pet ownership, please don’t give pets as gifts; animal ownership is an endeavor best entered into as a well thought out plan, not as a spur-of-the-moment surprise. Shelters are full of once cuddly puppies and kittens grown into everyday responsibilities, in fact that’s very likely how we came to have the dear Junebug in our lives. As many of you know, two years ago, and just a few weeks after Christmas, Juno was dumped at a farmhouse in rural Idaho. Miles from any other houses and in the freezing cold, she sat shivering out there for hours. It was quickly apparent that she had been fed and sheltered up until that day, but also traumatized by someone’s’ ignorant and brutal attempts at “training”. Today, you wouldn’t know it to look at her; confident and excessively cheerful, she know beyond a shadow of a doubt that she is loved and cherished, but she’s one of the lucky ones. Diesel is also one of the lucky ones, thanks to the caring and professional law enforcement personnel in our town and his new and loving family. Please keep making these innocent animals “lucky”. And get in your vote to win one of the best dog beds ever!

 

Diesel DNA Contest

Diesel Dog

Enter the contest in “reply” area below. Good luck!

 

We have been receiving requests for some more Diesel info to help with your contest guesses. If you’re just joining us now, let me get you up to speed. Periodically, we run a “guess the ancestry” kind of contest on one of the dogs who has been DNA tested. This isn’t just for fun, it also allows our readers a chance to win a FREE luxury dog bed! The rules are as follows; look at the photos, take your best guess, enter your guess in the “reply” section of this blog site (adogslifereview.com) & the first, most correct answer gets to pick a designer, earth-friendly dog bed from Allhailthedog.com! How easy is that?

Anyway, we’ve had some comments that people would like some more info on the Dog Himself; otherwise know as Diesel. First of all, you can read up on his incredible story right here at adogslifereview.com, as well as hearing about Juno’s adventure into DNA land, (a very interesting story as well). Second, you can read up on some Diesel stats; Diesel is approximately 11 months old, weighs 37 pounds and is just about a perfect square with a ground to shoulder height of 20” as well as a shoulder to butt measurement of 20”. Cute huh? He’s an amazing athlete like his owners and has the super powers of adoration. Literally. Everyone who meets him falls in love with him, not kidding.

So join in on the fun and win your pet the best dog bed he or she will ever have (cats love them too)!

 

DNA Mystery Test Number 3

 

dirty diesel

Well it’s that time again! For all you fans of #Dailydiesel, the DNA test has been done and the results should be back in around 2 weeks. If you’ve been following the story of one very lucky dog you’ll already know that Diesel was found wandering around our town this summer while a massive wildfire consumed a little under 100 thousand acres of beautiful forests around us. From the dense smoke and underlying tension, a story of hope and love emerged; first, law enforcement found the little guy before he was injured in traffic and brought him to our local shelter ( a very nice no-kill place), but shortly after that they started to miss the pup and actually took him back and started sending him home with fellow officers as babysitters. Now in order to understand how unusual this is and what a remarkable effect this one young dog had on so many people, you have to understand that our local law officers do this job all the time, find the wandering dog and take him to the shelter that is. Yes, they scan for microchips and if the dog has a collar with tags, they call any numbers they find. They’ll also check with all of the local vets, kennels and so on. In other words, they do a really good job of trying to reunite pets and their families, but sometimes, sadly enough, families don’t want to be found. Diesel had a collar (1 point) with his name and a phone number (2 points), but no microchip (minus 3 points). So they called and called and called, without an answer back. When Diesel entered our lives, one of the law enforcement officers and a good friend, showed up while I was on shift with Diesel on a rope. Just be aware, this act showed intention and planning, if I were to put it in legal terms. She figured that if anyone would adopt an adorable herding dog, it would be this sucker right here. She wasn’t far off since I assumed that this was the “my dog” my husband was looking for, however one of my partners literally fell to his knees, hugged the little guy to his chest and practically said “can I”? Who could resist? Apparently his better half couldn’t either and, as they say, history was made. What followed was nothing short of a miraculous change in two reasonably unsentimental, professional and very successful adults into mushy, love struck pet parents. In other words, one of us! So they went to allhailthedog.com and ordered up a DNA test and let the contest begin! Let’s all give a shot at guessing what Diesel is, that is, of what breeds. This one is a lot easier than our first contest with Juno, a little easier than Izzy’s contest, so have at it! Send your guesses in to adogslifereview.com. The first entered, most correct guess wins a luxury dog bed of their choice and a blog right here at adogslifereview.com. You can also find the blog on the allhailthedog.com.

Diesel in the Park

Diesel in the Park

Good luck and let the games begin! Follow us on Twitter, just send FOLLOW@AllHailTheDog and like us on Facebook.

 

TO ENTER THE CONTEST PLEASE REPLY IN “COMMENTS” SECTION BELOW!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Senior Pets are Easy to Love!

 

senior pets

 

Every time I look at the adoption photos for our local shelter I see at least 2 or 3 senior dogs up for adoption.

They’re at the shelter for a lot of reasons: sometimes their owners have passed away, which is tragic of course, but not nearly as tragic as the ones who’ve been abandoned or surrendered to the shelter. I can’t imagine the pain that a family or individual must feel when their circumstances are so horribly altered that they have to give up a member of their family. I know we can easily judge someone in this position, but I’m sure that most of them are at their wit’s end. Yes, there are those people who should never own a pet and just give one up because they’re moving somewhere that pets aren’t allowed, and don’t even get me started on people who just abandon their animals on the street or even locked up in a house.  Jail is too good for them.

However, November is adopt a senior pet month and I would challenge anyone who loves pets to make room in their hearts and home for a senior pet. They’re awesome for anyone who isn’t as active as they used to be as well as a great companion for someone who should maybe get out a little more often. I’ve seen the amazing change that an easier to care for senior pet has made in the life of many a senior person; it’s astounding how they can lift a mild depression and bring light into someone’s life, cat and dog people alike.

Of course, you have to be willing to visit the vet regularly and make some little changes to ease some aches and pains; sometimes a lifted feed and water bowl and a soothing orthopedic dog bed are all they’ll need to make everyday a little brighter for both of you.

Adopt a senior pet this month and enjoy the best Thanksgiving ever!

 

 

 

 

 

Feeding the Always Hungry Dog

Best dog beds

May I?

 

Do you have a dog that just loves his food, I mean really, really loves to eat? I’ve only met a few dogs in my life who actually didn’t, one, my Doberman Khazmo, would only eat if I stood by his bowl; if I left, he did too. Not to mention that any one of my cats could come up and intimidate him from eating any more and then settle down and finish up the poor guys’ dinner.

No, I’d say most dogs do love their food, but some dogs, well some dogs worship food, they live for the bowl; the rattle of kibble, the creak of the can lid, everything that portends a meal or for that matter, a crumb. Chow hounds they’re called and I know that many a pet owner has failed their pet by giving in to the pleading, desperate eyes over and over again, until one day they wake up and their pet is obese.  Of course so many of their owners have the same problem, it’s easy to see how they would transfer that need for food to their dogs. I’m here to beg you to learn to honor your responsibility to our pet and to feed them only the best food that you can afford. Talk to your vet and then research your little head off. One of the best references I’ve found is a book by the original dog whisperer, Paul Owens. His knowledge of pet nutrition will blow your thoughts about commercial pet foods out of the water.

Don’t panic, it’s not only simpler than you think; it’s affordable too. Avoiding corn, wheat and any grains is a great start as well as only buying food with human grade ingredients; absolutely no “animal or meat by products”. Many people do the research and end up making their own pet food, but I’ve found that by adding fresh produce that’s been shredded in my food processor into the grain-free kibble and organic, human grade canned dog food that I feed our dogs daily, they stay full and are vibrantly energetic and of excellent weight. Of course I have to measure out their food, or they could still get fat, but the produce (broccoli, carrots, zucchini, apples etc) really helps to them fill up. You owe it to your dog to help prevent so many debilitating diseases that plague overweight animals; from arthritis to heart failure.

A dear friend allows us to dog sit their ridiculously cute rescue puppy Diesel on a pretty regular basis, and this sweet guy is a true chowhound. The good news is that being food motivated is a great training aid, (it doesn’t hurt that he’s clever and willing to learn), but his talent for inhaling whatever is in his bowl is astounding! Luckily for him, his owners weigh him, measure out his meals and feed him a truly high quality food, which has helped him become a sleek, shiny coated model of health, and all of this in just the 2 short months they’ve had him. Diesel’s penchant for meals can leave him hiccupping though, along with a few other digestive problems, so we’ve come up with the home version of the “maze bowl” that people use to slow down a dogs’ mealtime; we simply add two of his favorite bones to the bowl and it works like a charm to control his feeding time and allow him to actually chew his food before he swallows it.

Now we all sleep a little better (and longer) and I like to think that he feels like he actually had a full meal. Although I have to admit, it was awfully funny to watch him hiccup in his sleep, his little nose bouncing in time on the bolster of his lounge dog bed.

The Dog Finds a Home

Well fate is a funny thing I’ll tell you, I was at work at the fire station the other day, just me and the new guy on our shift, when one of our police officers walked in with the most adorable little dog; black and white, definitely part Heeler and as sweet as can be. He looked like he could be Rhylee’s little brother! The new guy just bought a house with his girlfriend and I’ve been threatening them with a house warming dog, because lets face it, what’s a house without a dog? Our friend the officer explained that the poor little guy had been found a week earlier wandering around town and in spite of an enormous effort on their part, they’d been unable to find his owners. The funny thing about this dear pup is that he has just about the most irresistible personality in the history of dogdom and everyone at the police station had been taking him home at night just to keep him out of the pound; he’s just that adorable. To make a long story short, my work partner was pretty much a lost cause from the first minute and his girl friend was at the station just a few hours later giving her stamp of approval.

Now these two people aren’t exactly your typical 9-5ers; they’re both world champion bike riders and firefighters who manage very busy, successful careers AND are renovating a house and still, they’ve swept this little lost dog into their lives, filled his world with love and care and attention and everyone is a lot better for it. Don’t you just love a great story like that?

And one of the best things about it is that my husband and I get to dog sit when they’re traveling, so I get to be a part of this happy puppy’s life too. And Juno and Rhylee adore him as much as he loves them. He’s had a few sleepovers at the fire station with us and I can’t tell you how lucky we all feel watching him snooze away in his cozy pet cave bed under the desk. All hail the dog indeed!

Best dog beds

Sleepy Station Dog