Friday, August 28, 2015

Wonderful Dog (and Cat) Art Print Giveaway from RetroPets

I recently released my book trailer video celebrating the human-animal bond, and was so happy to hear from so many of you who loved the images in the video.  A picture can capture an emotion, make you smile, or melt your heart. Today, I've got a special treat for you! If you love pets (you do, right?!) then you're going to love this giveaway!

Retro Pets offered me a sample of their beautiful animal prints, and they're giving me SIX prints to give away! I'm excited that so many of you will get the chance to experience this adorable art and have one of your very own.

Artist Krista Brooks took her love for all things vintage and combined it with a talent for drawing animals, and the result is charming, colorful, absolutely delightful art prints for pet lovers.

Some of the designs, which resemble old-time advertising, include coffee, beer and wine labels. Others are for doggy treats and biscuits, while others represent ads for pajamas, purses or pubs. There are nearly 100 breeds to choose from, and yes, there are even prints featuring frisky felines.

We received the beautiful prints Fetching Dreams tennis balls,  

Ike likes his look-alike!

Ready Retriever Golden Ale,

and Best Pick Pup apples.

Kelly's twin is the apple of her eye!

Krista's designs are absolutely adorable, the colors are bright, the dogs' expressions are priceless, and they the retro style is gorgeous. I love how I could choose a design to "go with" each of my dogs, and have already chosen a spot in my kitchen to hang them.

And now, here is your chance to win one of these gorgeous prints for yourself! I'm giving away six 8x10 prints, so there are plenty of chances to win!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Full Disclosure: I was given two 11x14 prints and one 8x10 print to review, along with six 8x10 prints to give away, in exchange for my honest review. This in no way influenced my review. Opinions expressed here are 100% my own.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Pets can be Messy

Pets can be messy.
And stinky.
Muddy paws. Accidents in the house. Grubby dirty hairy bodies on our good furniture.
And in our home, lately Ike is having a stomach upset. And this means that all of a sudden, without warning, he's tossed his, kibble, and I have a smelly mess on the carpet.

"My tummy doesn't feel so good. But how is this spray going to help?"

When sent me a bottle of Rocco & Roxie Stain & Odor Eliminator to try out, I wasn't sure I needed it at first. After all, my dogs aren't puppies--they're 9 and 13 years old. We're not working on housebreaking. They don't have accidents in the house.

Then, Ike started with his tummy issues. (We've had him to the vet and he's on medication. At this point we think it's a food sensitivity, a tricky issue to resolve.) And that's when I realized I had a definite use for this product.

Following the directions, I scooped and sopped up what I could with a paper towel. Then I sprayed a liberal amount of Stain and Odor Eliminator on the area. After letting it stand for a few minutes, I wiped it clean. After it was dry, I vacuumed.

This helps freshen things up!

Happily, the carpet came out nice and clean. Of course, I got to it right away. I haven't tested it on old, set-in stains. But, the best part is that the carpet also smelled nice and fresh. I worry about my house smelling "doggy" and I think getting up these little spots and stains quickly, with a quality product is key to keeping the smell in check.

Rocco & Roxie has natural bio-enzymatic formula that is said to "permanently eliminate pet urine odor" and I might add, upchuck odors as well. A week after application, it still smells fresh and clean. It works on carpet and upholstery, and is safe around children and pets.

I definitely recommend Rocco & Roxie Stain and Odor Eliminator. Although I haven't tried it on pet accidents, based on my experience, I have every confidence that it would work great. I like the odor, it's fresh but not perfumey.

This is a good cleanser for anyone with pets.

*Full Disclosure- sent me a 32 oz. bottle of Rocco & Roxie Stain and Odor Eliminator in exchange for my honest review. This in no way influenced my review. Opinions expressed here are 100% my own.

Monday, August 24, 2015

Why We Love Animals--The Faithfully Yours video book trailer Premiere

Faithfully Yours 

Why do we love animals? And why do animals love us?
These are the questions I sought to answer in my new book, Faithfully Yours; the amazing bond between us and the animals we love (Paraclete Press, October 4, 2015).

When I thought about it, I realized this amazing, strong love is because of the reciprocal relationship, the human-animal bond, that is possible between animals and ourselves. We are devoted to them, and they are devoted to us. We protect them, they protect us. And as many of us know, we rescue them just as they rescue us. 

Faithfully Yours is a book full of true stories about how people love animals...and animals love people. All sorts of people---young and old, healthy and hurting. And all kinds of animals--dogs, cats, horses, rabbits, cows, chickens, parrots and even whales and deer.

Well, that's a little bit about the book. And now it's time for the Video Book Trailer Premiere!  After writing the book, I wanted to create a video that encompassed this bond and the loving relationship we have with animals, and reflects the heartwarming stories in the book. So, here's the video. I hope you find it speaks to you.

If you like this video, won't you join in the Premiere fun and share it today? Post it on your Facebook wall, in a tweet or Instagram, or email it to some pet-loving friends?

And if you really like the video, Faithfully Yours is available for pre-order now. As a Premiere BONUS, if you order Faithfully Yours on Amazon today, just leave a comment here to tell me you ordered, and a way for me to get in touch with you--or, send me an email--and I'll send you personalized signed bookplates you can adhere to the inside of your books as a thank you!

What about you? Is there an animal in your life who is faithfully yours?

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Wordless Wednesday- Still as a Statue

Kelly's having a little fun checking out these statues. Do you think she thinks they're real?

Join BlogPaws wordless Wednesday blog hop!

Monday, August 17, 2015

The great dog food swap

Does your dog like his dog food's taste?
How do you know for sure?

 Kelly is trying out a new dog food, Solid Gold. Last week we discussed the ingredients in Solid Gold Buck Wild food. This week I want to talk about taste.

Obviously, the main way you can tell if a dog likes the taste of their food is if they eat it. That being said, most of my dogs will happily eat anything including dirt, grass, bugs, garbage and yes, even you-know-what. But here's a funny thing that happened while I've been feeding Solid Gold.

Kelly has been enjoying her Solid Gold meals, while Ike has been eating his regular kibble. After the dogs eat, they have a habit of switching places, and licking the bottom of the other one's bowl, sniffing around on the floor and finding any stray bits the other dog may have missed.

After a week or so of this, Ike began rejecting his own food. He just stopped eating it. If you know golden retrievers, this is not a common occurrence! Ike usually eats anything, including kale (yuck!).
I checked his mouth, his tummy, etc. and he didn't seem ill otherwise. So, I offered him some of Kelly's Solid Gold food.

Sure enough, he ate that!

The only conclusion I could come to is that Ike preferred the taste of the leftover bits from Kelly's bowl, and by comparison didn't like his own food anymore. So now I am feeding both dogs Solid Gold and having no problems at all.

Do you think your dog would like Solid Gold? Next week I'll be giving away a prize package of Solid Gold food, scoop, treats and other goodies! So stay tuned!

Full Disclosure:
* Solid Gold supplied me with a 3 month supply of Solid Gold venison formula to review and a VIP prize package of food and treats to give away. This in no way influenced my opinions. All opinions expressed here are 100% my own. No money was given in exchange for this review.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Wordless Wednesday- Relax on the Porch

Summer's winding down. Don't forget to take time to RELAX! We sure are!

Join BlogPaws Wordless Wednesday Blog Hop.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Random House supports dog rescue in new Dr. Seuss book

Do you read him in a tree?
Do you read him by the sea?
Do you read him with your pet?
Do you read him at the vet?

Yes, I'm talking about Dr. Seuss--because his new book, What Pet Should I Get? just came out. My husband, being a huge Dr. Seuss fan and pet lover, ordered the book right away.

Kelly, Zeke and Ike say decidedly, "Dog!"

Will he read it to granddaughter Grace?
or keep it in a hiding place?
Can he read it with a straight face?
And will it win the Best Book race?

The cover shows a boy looking at a cat, dog, bird and goldfish. Inside are the typical verses as a brother and sister look over their choices. "The cat? Or the dog? The kitten? The pup? Oh, boy! It is something to make a mind up." They even consider a tall feathery-footed bird with a star on it's belly, and a huge long-tailed striped Yent that sleeps in a tent.

But the most interesting thing about the book is the end note from the publishers.

They wrote "at Random House, we also love pets" and went on to say that fifty years ago, when Theodor Geisel aka Dr. Seuss wrote his book, it was common for people to buy dogs, cats and other animals at pet stores. The publisher recommends finding pets from shelters and rescue organizations and warns us never to purchase pets from places that are supplied by puppy mills. Helping at-risk animals is "a responsibility all of us share."

As the publishers say, back fifty years ago no one would have thought twice about a Dr. Seuss book where two kids go into a pet store to buy a pet. I am grateful that Random House took the opportunity to spread the word about rescue groups, and especially the dangers of puppy mills.

 The best part of the book, in fact is the back of the book. Complete with interesting information about Dr. Seuss's favorite pets, including photos of him and his bulldog Rex, and Irish Setter Cluny. There is also interesting information on how the publisher and illustrator chose to polish the unfinished manuscript, with careful attention to how they believed Geisel would have wanted it done.

"Perhaps a golden retriever?" suggests Zeke and Ike.


Which Dr. Seuss book is your favorite?

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Rub a dub dub Three Dogs in a Tub

Bath time today!
All three dogs got a good scrubbing today. Now they're drying off in the sun.

What about you? Do your dogs LOVE or HATE bath time?

Join BlogPaws Wordless Wednesday Blog Hop!

Monday, August 3, 2015

Kelly and Solid Gold dog food review- part 1

What is the best food to feed my dog?
Wouldn't it be nice if there was ONE SIMPLE answer that question? If there was THE BEST, healthiest, most nutritious food that was a no-brainer--just buy, measure, feed and there you go.
But it's not that easy. Dogs come in different sizes. Different breeds. Their health varies. Their activity levels vary. Every dog has different needs. That's why we have to evaluate carefully to determine what food to feed them.

Kelly and Ike have different needs. Ike is about 70 pounds. Kelly is 35 pounds. Ike has allergies. Kelly has Cushing's Disease. Ike is 9 years old. Kelly is 13. Ike is a couch potato. Kelly has achy joints.

Recently Solid Gold invited me to join their campaign and try out their dog food, and blog about the results.

 After researching the company, I was happy to join. I decided to select Kelly for the trial, since Ike is currently doing well on his limited ingredient duck-based food and I didn't want to mess with that.

Here are some of the criteria I look for when I'm evaluating a new food for my dog:
1. Ingredients
2. Company reputation/lack of recalls
3. How my dog enjoys the taste
4. My dog's digestive health while on food
5. My dog's overall health while on food

Today I'll discuss the ingredients in Solid Gold.

Solid Gold is holistic dog food made with natural ingredients and added vitamins and minerals. Many varieties are available in grain-free. I was impressed that Solid Gold took care to ask questions about Kelly and then recommend a food blend appropriate for her. They recommended Buck Wild variety, with venison, potato, and pumpkin.

Some other ingredients:
Turkey meal

Other varieties are
chicken, tapioca, and quinoa
beef, eggs and peas
turkey and vegetables
buffalo, sweet potato, and chick peas
oatmeal, barley and ocean fish
and more

Kelly is used to a chicken-based dogfood, but for this review we are trying to venison food. I'm very pleased with the ingredients in Solid Gold dog food. Dog food advisor ranks Solid Gold as 4 stars, above average dog food.

I'll let you know how Kelly likes it, and we'll discuss more about reputation and recalls next time! And, keep reading because we'll be offering some giveaways later on, so you can try for yourself!

How about you? What is the number one ingredient in the food you feed your dog? Have you tried any other proteins for your dog? What ingredients are most important to you when you look for a dog food? How do you evaluate the ingredients in your dog's food?

Full Disclosure:
* Solid Gold supplied me with a 3 month supply of Solid Gold venison formula to review. This in no way influenced my opinions. All opinions expressed here are 100% my own. No money was given in exchange for this review.