Dogs Enjoying Summer


Dogs enjoying Summer activities
Hitting the Beaches
We make sure to follow impawtant SUMMER SAFETY TIPS while we're having Fun in the Sun and PET BOATING SAFETY TIPS if we take the dogs out on the water!

Dogs enjoying Summer activities
Dipping our paws into lakes and ponds

My dogs enjoying Summer
Chillaxin on the porch

My dog enjoying Summer breezes in the yard
Enjoying Summer breezes

My dog loves Starbucks Puppaccinos!
Devouring delicious Starbucks Puppaccinos!




Summer Health Tips for Pets

As a proud member of the Bayer Animal Health PET INFLUENCER TEAM, I strive to share information and support initiatives that help achieve every pet parent's goal of HAPPY AND HEALTHY PETS

Today I'm sharing some important Summer Health Tips for Pets that were provided to the Bayer Pet Influencer Team by Bayer Veterinarian, Dr. Zachary Miller.

Dogs and Panting

🐶 Dogs have sweat glands, they're in their feet!

🐶 Unlike people, dogs don't rely on sweating as a major way to cool off.

🐶 When dogs pant they utilize walled off areas in their lungs where oxygen is not exchanged. If they didn't do this, they would hyperventilate!

🐶 It may not appear this way to humans, but dogs use a lot of energy when panting.

🐶 Overweight dogs and brachycephalic dog breeds, such as Pugs, Boxers, Boston Terriers, Pekingese, and Lhasa Apsos have a high risk of suffering heat strokes.

🐶 A common sign of heat stroke in pets is bloody diarrhea.

Thanks to Bayer Animal Health and Dr. Zachary Miller for sharing these pet health tips!

Approximately 60% or more of an adult animal's body weight is water!  It's important to keep your pets well hydrated, especially in the hot Summer weather.

Get more helpful tips and information from the PetBasics from Bayer web site!

Summer Health Tips for Pet from Bayer Animal Health
Thanks to Bayer Animal Health and Dr. Zachary Miller for sharing these Pet Health Tips on why dogs pant!

Did you find these tips on why dogs pant helpful?  Please leave us a comment and share your thoughts!  We love hearing from you and we want to bring you helpful and interesting information about dogs - and occasionally other pets!

Are These Toxic Pet Dangers Lurking In Your Yard?

The use of insecticides and pesticides has increased so much over the years, both in residential neighborhoods and public areas like parks.  These are the places we play with and walk our dogs!  Do we have a false sense of security when it comes to these potentially toxic chemicals and our pets?

Toxic pest traps and baits could inadvertently end up in YOUR garden and hard your pets.
I don't want any poisonous stuff ending up in my garden!
We know these substances can potentially be toxic to dogs and other pets. However, we may think it's completely safe to spray insecticides or position rat and ant baits in the front or side yard of our house if our dogs only play in the back yard.

We may not realize how much weed killer, bug spray, and pest control is being used in or near public spaces.  We think parks, walking and hiking paths, and other public spaces that spray pesticides or place pest traps close to where we walk our dogs are safe.

The truth is, substances that are toxic to dogs and cats can end up in places pets can easily get to. Dogs can stick their noses deep into grasses or flower beds where insecticides have just been sprayed.  They could ingest grasses or plants that have been sprayed as well.

Pest baits and traps can also be hazardous to pets.  Even if they're placed where pets are not allowed, they can be inadvertently moved to locations in a variety of ways, even by other animals!  Birds can pick them up if they're lightweight and end up dropping them in another location, like your back yard! 

Ant baits and other pest control items are sometimes moved by animals, kids, even hoses!  They can pose a danger to your dog or cat.
I was shocked to find that the ant bait I had staked into the ground behind a shrub ended up in our driveway!
We have a Carpenter Ant problem so we put down ant baits around the front and sides of our house.  We thought it was totally safe because our dogs are never off leash in those areas of the yard.  

Imagine my surprise when I found that one of the ant baits, which I staked into the ground behind a shrub, ended up on our driveway!  The bait had little teeth marks around it, indicating that a squirrel or other small animal had gotten hold of it.   Fortunately, it was left on the driveway where I could see it.  A squirrel or other small animal could have easily taken it and moved it into the yard where we wouldn't see it, but our dogs would have gotten hold of it!

A friend of ours once threw some rodent bait into their attic because they thought mice or rats were in there.  The bait was in the form of cubes.  The directions said to just toss the bait cubes around in the attic and the offending rodents would eat them and die.  Here's the problem; any rodent that got into the attic could have easily carried off the bait and deposited it in a backyard or anywhere else in the neighborhood.  After I heard that, I resolved never to use that type of pest control product in our home or yard.  It's too risky!

Pest traps and baits can also be inadvertently moved by re-positioning or accidentally kicking a garden hose, a bird picking up and dropping it in your yard, or even being picked up and moved by a curious child.  

If you place this type of trap or bait around your property, check on the traps frequently and check your yard to ensure traps or bait haven't ended up where pets or small children can get to it!  Or better yet, search for natural insecticides and pesticides rather than the chemical laden kind.

Toxic materials like pest traps and baits can inadvertently end up in your yard in a variety of ways.  Keep your pets safe from toxic materials
Pets can get into toxic materials in public places and even in our own yard.  Be aware of your pet's surroundings at all times
Another concern is that your pet might catch or even eat an animal that has ingested poisonous material.  The poison could then end up coming in contact with, or being consumed by, your precious pet.  

Even if you don't use these toxic substances around your home, they could possibly end up on your property or in a nearby park.  Your pet could then be at risk for coming in contact with it.

Keep your eyes open, check your yard often to ensure nothing hazardous has landed there.   Be alert at parks, dog parks, hiking trails, and at the beach for potentially poisonous items.

According to PetMD,  symptoms of toxic poisoning in dogs include:

🕱 Fever
🕱 Vomiting
🕱 Diarrhea
🕱 Depression
🕱 Chronic Anorexia
🕱 Seizures
🕱 Muscle Tremors
🕱 Hypersalivation
🕱 Constricted pupils
🕱 Increased heart rate 
🕱 Lack of coordination
🕱 They have trouble breathing

If you want to know what the most common pet toxin is in YOUR state, you'll find it on the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Conter's article on the Top Toxicity Calls Per State

If your pet has ingested any poisons, immediately call your Vet or the Pet Poison Hotline at 800-213-6680  OR call the ASPCA Poison Control Center at 888-426-4435.


Has your pet ever encountered a poisonous substance in your yard or on a walk?  Tell us about it in the Comments.  We love hearing from you!

Artisan Inspired Dog Treats and a Giveaway

We first met the folks from Vita Bone® at the BlogPaws Conference in 2015. Each year since then we've enjoyed visiting their booth at the conference and seeing what new treats for dogs they have. 

Vita Bone dog treats are Artisan Inspired, sourced & made in the U.S.
Vita Bone® Artisan Inspired® soft dog treats

Vita Bone® has  Artisan Inspired® soft dog treats. I love the healthy ingredients and the artisan inspired style of these treat flavors.  In addition to their Dog Biscuits and Chewys, these new Artisan Inspired® treats are SOFT dog treats.  I think the soft treats are a great addition to their line of dog biscuits and other snacks for dogs.   

Vita Bone® Artisan Inspired® dog treats are made with:
Wholesome grains 
 Real Vegetables & Fruits 
 Real Meats, like Turkey, Chicken, and Bacon!
 They're Sourced and Made in America
➤ Vita Bone® Artisan Inspired® dog treats Do Not contain artificial flavors, corn, or soy   

Vita Bone Artisan Inspired dog treats are made with wholesome grains, real fruits & vegetables, and real meats.  They contain NO artificial flavors, corn or soy
Enough TALK, when are we gonna EAT them!?

Vita Bone® Artisan Inspired® Treats are thoughtfully crafted in five kitchen inspired flavors. 

🍖Country Biscuits, Sausage & Gravy Flavor
🍖Turkey Pot Roast & Red Potato Flavor
🍖Maple Bacon & Blueberry Flavor
🍖BBQ Chicken & Sweet Potato Flavor
🍖 Turkey Stuffing & Cranberry Flavor

They're great as an everyday reward, training treats, or a special treat for your dog just 'cause you love each other so much!

This post is sponsored by Vita Bone®. I am being compensated to help share information about Vita Bone® Artisan Inspired® soft dog treats. We only share information about products we feel are relevant to our readers. 

Icy and Phoebe put Vita Bone® Artisan Inspired® Soft Dog Treats to the test.  They tried the Country Biscuits, Sausage & Gravy Flavor and the Turkey Pot Roast & Red Potato Flavor.  You can see the results in our video:

Vita Bone® Artisan Inspired® Soft Dog Treats are a hit!  Icy and Phoebe give these treats a PAWS UP!!

Other Vita Bone® dog treats, dog biscuits, and chewys you may like:

Vita Bone® dog biscuits and treats for dogs are available nationally at Walmart and grocery stores.  Use the Vita Bone store locator to find a store near you that carries Vita Bone products.  

Vita Bone is a family owned business that has been making dog treats in Utah since 1972.  They are proud sponsors of the American Red Cross and Pet Partners. Both of these charities are near and dear to my heart.  Icy and I are a Pet Partners Therapy Dog team, volunteering in our community to help people in need.  I've been a supporter of the Red Cross for many years.  They always seem to be the first ones to step in to help when a disaster strikes, anywhere in the world!  I love companies that give back to their communities, like Vita Bone!


Vita Bone makes several different kinds of delicious dog treats, you can read about them here: Vita Bone's other delicious dog treats.  

Two Shirts Morph into a Fancy DIY Dog Skirt

The BlogPaws Conference was coming up fast, and I wanted to walk the Red Carpet with Icy and Phoebe at the Nose to Nose Awards dinner.  I had an adorable dress for Phoebe, but I could not find anything dressy that would fit Icy with her big 50lb. long body!  Time was running out, so I got a little creative.

I made this skirt last minute for Icy to wear on the Red Carpet at the BlogPaws conference
I searched through old clothing to find something, anything I could work with to make an outfit for Icy that she could walk the Red Carpet in at the conference.

I came across this shirt that belonged to my Mom, who passed away last year.  Icy and Phoebe adored my Mom.  Whenever she came for a visit they'd get so excited and compete for her attention.  She loved them too - she was always sneaking them contra band, like pieces of cheese or salami when I wasn't looking!

I thought this old shirt of my Mom's could be worked into a DIY dog skirt for Icy
The animal print is beautiful and rich, I always loved this shirt. It didn't fit me, but I thought it would be perfect as a little skirt for Icy.  I don't possess the skills to fashion a dress, but surely I could manage a really simple skirt, right?!  So I got to work.

I cut off the sleeves and top portion of the shirt, leaving me with a tube shaped piece.

I decided to cut out what would be the front portion of the skirt.  I didn't want it to get in Icy's way and I wanted her to stay cool when she lay on the floor.  I just needed the skirt to cover her back.

I left the front of the skirt open so Icy wouldn't get too warm in it
I measured, cutting the sides to take it in so it would fit around Icy.  I then sewed/hemmed the piece at the top and slid an elastic band through it to form the "waistband" of the skirt.

The skirt looked pretty plain, I needed some sort of embellishment to dress it up.  I found an old beaded top that had belonged to my Mom as well.  I cut the sleeves off it and used one of them to dress up the waistband.  I attached a gem stone I found for 2 bucks at the craft store to one side of the waistband and it was done!  I sewed the whole thing by hand, my sewing machine is still packed up in the basement from our move to NY.

DIY fancy dog skirt made from two shirts  #DIY #dogclothing
The finished product!  you'd never guess this skirt was made from TWO SHIRTS, would you?

Icy wore a DIY Dog Skirt at the BlogPaws awards dinner
Icy is ready to walk the Red Carpet in her crude but cute, fancy DIY dog skirt.
It was simple but cute, and I kind of love the idea that Icy now has a skirt made from something that belonged to my beloved Mom.  We had donated so much of her clothing over the course of a year, but I still kept many of her things.  I'm sure my Mom was looking down from heaven and chuckling at my Red Carpet creation, but happy that I included her in some way, and kept her in our thoughts during that wonderful event!

Icy and Phoebe on the Red Carpet at BlogPaws

Have you ever made your dog any clothing?  Leave us a comment and tell us about it!


Summer is upon us, and with warm weather and sunny skies, many owners are choosing to take their dogs out to sea on their boats.  Many four-legged companions enjoy sailing as much (heck, maybe even more than) their human counterparts. The feeling of the wind in your fur and the smell of salt air is enough to make dogs giddy with a sense of adventure!

Boating Safety for Dogs INFO-GRAPHIC, Take my dog on a boat, Boat safety tips, Dogs,

However, there are safety considerations to keep in mind before bringing your dog on board.  The folks at K9 of Mine  created a Dog Safety Tips Infographic that they've shared with Dogs Luv Us and We Luv Them to help keep canine companions safe while out on the water. 

Be sure to read these tips before you take your pet out on the water!

One of the biggest goals we have had for our dogs has been to get them out on the water in a boat!  We love being out on the water but my dogs have rarely been on boats. 

Phoebe came along on a sunset cruise aboard a large boat, but Icy still hasn't foung her sea legs! Neither of them has been on a  canoe, kayak, or raft, but this season will be different! 

Icy's maiden voyage aboard a boat is planned for later this year!  I'm both excited and a bit anxious about it. I will let you know how it goes in a future post.  I'll be sure to follow all the safety tips on K9 of Mine's Info-Graphic before we go!

Safety tips for taking your dog on the water in a boat, Boating Safety for Dogs INFO-GRAPHIC, Take my dog on a boat, Boat safety tips, Dogs,
Icy and Phoebe have been mostly Land Lubbers, but hopefully we can change that soon!

A big THANK YOU to K9 of Mine for sharing this Pet Safety Ingo-Graphic and tips to keep pets safe on the water!

Boating safety for dogs, Boat safety for dogs, dog wearing Life jacket for dogs
Icy's new life jacket from Outward Hound will keep her safe on the boat

🐶 I'll be careful to use a Life Vest for dogs before I bring my dogs on any boat, you should too! As the Infographic shows, it's an important safety tool. I just got Icy a beautiful new life jacket from Outward Hound - Isn't it pretty! They offer a great discount for first time orders on their site, which was a big help. 

Have you taken your pet out on the water?  Please leave us a comment and tell us about it, you know we love hearing from you!