Pet Gear

The best day of the year is here!

It’s National Dog Day, a day to celebrate the love and bond we share with our canine companions.

It’s hard to top. What could possibly be better than National Dog Day?



Having your birthday fall on National Dog Day. Especially if you’ve always proclaimed that dogs are pretty much the best thing ever. It is also, in a strange twist of fate that I cannot tell if it is coincidental or not, is also National hot dog day, which is a fact I’m not as excited about so I will choose to ignore.

But it’s my birthday! And the fact that it’s National Dog Day is a welcome distraction from the fact that I am now old enough that birthdays are officially depressing, so Brody and I are going to have a great walk and have some treats and I may, in a fit of generosity, even give him a bit of hot dog, even though I won’t partake myself because I watched that episode of “How It’s Made” and eew.

In another wonderful coincidence, just yesterday GoPro released their new Fetch dog harness. I’ve been waiting for this for years. Some of you may remember my failed attempts at Brody cam, when I actually commissioned a person on Etsy back when you still could do that to make me a helmet harness for the dog. He looked like a Spaceball. It didn’t work. So we waited, and finally, our patience has been rewarded.

Heck yes I have one. To make things even scarier my husband bought himself a drone for his birthday so we have all the tech. Brody cam is COMING. Be warned.



ETA: Have also just been informed that today is also Women’s Equality Day, a celebration of the 19th Amendment ratification on 8/26/1920. The day just keeps getting better and better!

Filed: Blog, Daily Life, Lifestyle, Pet Gear Tagged: , ,

Live from Vegas: Pet Products You’ve Got To See

FTC Disclosure: featured products provided review product and/or compensation for inclusion in the Product Spotlight.

If you’ve ever been to a trade show, you know how easy it is to get overwhelmed. A pet show like SuperZoo is an utter cacophony of sounds, sights, and row after row of many things that all look the same after an hour: treats and collars, treats and collars, rinse, repeat.

szIt’s hard for products to stand out in a crowd like that, but when Dr. Andy Roark and I hit the convention floor the last couple of days that is exactly what we were looking for. Fortunately for us, we found it.

Like two wandering corporate souls in sensible shoes and dark suits, we crisscrossed the vast plains of the Mandalay Bay convention floor searching, talking to people, and petting booth dogs until we wound up with three fantastic standouts for the Inaugural Roark and Vogelsang SuperZoo Product Spotlight. Here they are:

1. Tech of the Year: Voyce collar

Remember that moment in Up when Carl says to Dug, “I wish he could talk” and Dug’s collar says, “Hi there”? The idea of our dogs being able to speak has transfixed us humans for years with the possibilities of what they could tell us: Are you hurt? Are you hungry? Are you tired?

While the Voyce collar can’t actually make your dog talk, it is a huge leap forward in the ever growing market of wearable tech for dogs and so far, the closest thing we have to speaking their language. The Voyce collar’s technology and interface tracks and trends over time not only activity level and calories burned but heart rate and respiratory rate.

Great Dane Taz-2216-2_noStethoscope

As someone vastly invested in the concept of providing better care for senior pets, one of the messages I keep trying to get across to pet owners is this: ‘he’s getting old and tired’ is only the tip of the iceberg. If your tired old man has a resting heart rate through the roof and pants 24/7, guess what- he may be in pain. This data, which up to now were only accessible by a person with a stethoscope, can be collected at home over time and accessible to both the owners and the vet.

To add value to the experience, Voyce teamed with education resource provider LifeLearn to ensure owners have access to a wide variety of educational resources to help understand the data and make all of us better pet owners through improved knowledge. The dashboard features not only your individual pet’s collected data but advice and articles from a large panel of  animal experts.


There’s a reason it won the PC World/Tech Hive and Yahoo! Tech “Best of CES 2014″ at this year’s Consumer Electronics Show. It’s nice to see the tech world finally going to the dogs.

The Voyce collar will be launching before the holidays- interested owners can sign up on the Voyce website to be notified when it is available for sale online. In the meantime you can join the ever growing community on Facebook of techie dogs waiting for their chance to have a Voyce. -JV

2. Toy of the Year: Tuggo Dog Toy

It always makes me feel good to watch a big man dance. That’s the same feeling I get when I watch a big, strong dog play wildly with a toy. I think that’s why I am such a fan of the Tuggo Dog Toy.

The toy is wonderfully simple in its design. It’s a large plastic ball with a rope through it. The ball can be filled with water to add weight and cause a “tugging” motion. Dogs grab the rope, pull the ball around, and toss the entire contraption into the air.

To appreciate what Tuggo is, you’ve just got to see dogs at play with it. Tuggo’s Facebook page  is covered with videos of dogs enjoying the toy. Here’s the video that originally caught my attention:

YouTube Preview Image

I love large dogs, and one of the greatest struggles I see pet owners having with them is getting them enough exercise. While small dogs can often work out inside the house or in the back yard, large dogs may not have the space to adequately stretch their legs. If a product like Tuggo can get these big dogs out and moving and burning calories, then I’m all for it. And who doesn’t like watching big dogs frolic like puppies?


The ball is available in red, blue, and green colors, and in 10-inch diameter and 7-inch diameter sizes. Tuggo Toys can be purchased through their website  and shipping is free.   -AR

I asked founder Adam Harrington what inspired the Tuggo, and he told me “watching my dog play with a bowling ball.” All of you people asking me for a TOUGH toy? Here it is. -JV

 3. Lifestyle Product of the Year: Kinn Kleanbowl

As a busy mom, I have to tell you: things that make my life easier make me very happy. We eat on paper plates a lot around here. While I am tempted by the ease of doing the same for my pets, if you’ve ever watched a dog try to eat out of a paper bowl you know that just ends in upended bowls wedged under a chair and food embedded in the kitchen floor, so stainless steel it is.

Here’s the bad news: according to NSF International, pet bowls are the 4th germiest place in the house, teeming with E. coli, Salmonella, yeast, and mold. This is exactly what you would expect when you leave a bowl of meat products sitting around. People? We’re lazy and don’t wash the bowls nearly enough, and that is just how it is.

Here, in an elegant form, is the solution: the Kinn Kleanbowl, a stainless steel rim that sits on top of a sturdy, compostable bowl made from recyclable yet sturdy and waterproof (yes!!) sugar cane fiber. Yup, you can use it for water too, so you eliminate that algae-goo that builds up if your bowl doesn’t go in the dishwasher every day.

Klean bowl_with_food (2)


My cat eats a lot of wet food and Brody get rehydrated raw, so we know all too well how dirty and crusty bowls get. That being said, oily kibble residue isn’t much better. In addition for being a boon to time starved people like me, the Kleanbowl is a great solution for busy vet clinics who need their staff to spend less time scraping uneaten leftovers off in the trash and more time replacing the catheter the dog in cage 4 chewed out, yet again.

Klean Bowl top view

There is a small but persistent voice in my head that wants to know how this would also work with toddlers and spaghetti.

Clean. Convenient. Compostable. This is a bowl for  the people. The Kleanbowl retails for $19.95 and 50 count refills are available for $14.95 at the Kleanbowl website. To keep up on all the innovative products from Kinn including what I believe to be the world’s finest pill splitter, check out the Kinn Facebook page. -JV


Any of these jump out to you as must-haves? Stay tuned. Andy and I are going to be running a giveaway very soon!

Filed: Blog, Features, Lifestyle, Pet Gear, Reviews Tagged: , , , ,

My husband and Her: A neato love story

herI have no one to blame but myself, of course, for the events that have transpired since Christmas.

I was the one who brought her in, invited her to come into our home and get to know the place. My husband said it was the only thing he wanted this year, so I went with it, albeit with some trepidation.

You should have seen his face when he realized what I had done. “Wow!” he said. “Finally!” The children looked on in confusion. Brody ran away. Only Penelope, the newest addition to the fold, approached her with anything resembling curiosity.

Her name was Rosie, and she was here to stay.

I don’t consider myself a jealous person under normal circumstances, but it’s hard to compete with someone who plays their role with such aplomb. I even took out my Thomas Keller Bouchon Bakery cookbook and made what may be the most amazing chocolate chip cookies in existence in an attempt to regain my rightful place in his affections: “See!” I say, holding one out. “Aren’t they wonderful?” He takes a bite, nods in assent, and before I can say another word in she comes, swerving around me to clear the floors. She’s loud in her approach. You can’t miss her. Immediately his attention is gone, focused now on something newer, shinier. He smiles in admiration as she saunters away, the crumbs vanished.

Rosie is, if you haven’t figured it out yet, our new Neato robotic vacuum. I thought I was buying a household appliance. What I was getting was an obsession.

Every day, my husband greets us after work: me, the kids, Rosie. “What did you get done today?” he asks, then turns to Rosie. “And how did she do?” He surveys the house. “Wow. Wow. This is, like, the best thing ever. Is the dustbin full? Is your brush stuck?” He turns to me. “Did you check if she was OK and if she needed anything? Did you check the dustbin?”

She is thorough, I’ll give you that. She follows Brody around and grabs more off the floor in one afternoon than I seem to manage in several gos around the house. She doesn’t get annoyed at and ignore the space under the coffee table where furballs go to retire. She flushes them out like an angry beagle.

Living with her is sometimes a drag. She drones on and on, vRRRrrrRRRRRR. She always seems to be underfoot right where I need to be. Brody is petrified of her. My husband won’t stop talking about her. One day, when I lost all patience for her and her distracting antics, I hissed “Choke on a carrot, you dumb robot.”

Later than day, I came home from the grocery store, expecting the usual roar but instead being greeted with a disquieting sense of silence. The floor in the entryway, sparkling clean since her arrival, had the thin sprinkling of daily dust we were accustomed to in our pre-Rosie days. Brody looked at me with an expression I couldn’t read. I heard her, finally, a quiet, desperate chirping. I followed her cries for help to the kitchen.

She had choked on a squirrel.


Immediately chagrined, I disentangled the two battling toys and dispatched Rosie to the entryway, while I spent the time I would normally be dragging my Dyson around working on the book. When my husband got home, he didn’t even need to ask. “I emptied the dustbin. Twice.”

My husband posted about her on Facebook a few days ago, and one by one, the men all came out of lurking. “I have one too.” “Me too.” “It’s the most amazing thing I’ve ever done.” Our friend J just bought posted that he bought two. One for each floor of the house, or one for each dog, not sure.

I’d be more insulted at the apparent poor vacuuming skills this implies were it not, if I must tell the truth, an entirely correct assessment. We have come to an agreement, Rosie and I. My husband can gloat and lavish praise all he wants, as long as she keeps those hairballs away.

*No, I have no affiliation with Neato. This post is all me.

Filed: Blog, Lifestyle, Musings, Pet Gear, Reviews Tagged: , ,

On the twelfth day of Christmas AND another giveaway!

My doggie gave to me:

12 Yummers Yumming!


Eleven Crunchy Carrots

Ten Snorers Sleeping

Nine Surfin’ Santas

Eight Toes a-Twinklin’

Seven Noshes Nibbled

 Six things to lay on

Five faaaavorite things

Four doggie nerds

Three Irish Hounds

Two turtles, Dove

And a cat messing up my new tree!

Thank you to Annette at Biscuits By Lambchop for bringing up the end of this crazy train :) Treats for all tonight!

Speaking of that, for those of you who are still around, I do have another giveaway to bestow upon you:

For the Holiday Hound

I’m giving away two beautiful collars from 2 Hounds Design to keep your pooch stylin’ for the New Year. They are both size medium (13-18 inch) which is by the way the ONLY reason I am giving these away, because they are gorgeous. The blue one is a Martingale and the snowman is a standard collar.

To add to the fun I’m also sending two awesome toys, a Bottle Buddy for all your crinkly noise needs and a Tricky Treater puzzle ball because the dog needs something to do while you clean up all that wrapping paper, right? Approximate retail value of this set: $90.

IMG_6107 IMG_6106

You all the know the drill- enter below!

Congratulations to Leslie R., the winner!

Filed: 12 Days of Petmas, Blog, Features, Giveaways, Lifestyle, Pet Gear Tagged: , , , ,

Naughty or Nice Giveaway 1: Motorola WiFi Pet Monitor!

Has your pet been naughty or nice this year? You can find out for sure with the Motorola Scout1B Wifi Pet Monitor. I used a camera like this to verify it was indeed Kekoa and not Brody who was counter surfing while we were out.



Here’s the description:

This remote Motorola Scout1 Wi-Fi Video PET Monitor camera allows you to monitor your pets from anywhere. Catch live action, record video and take snapshots while controlling the camera with Remote Pan, Tilt and Digital Zoom. Home or away, Motorola’s SCOUT1 gives the comfort of keeping an eye on your pet convenient and fun.

Features: Wi-Fi video camera PC, MAC, Android, & iPhone/ iPad iOS compatible, video compression image snapshot, video recording, remote pan, tilt and zoom, two-way communication, infrared night vision, connect up to four cameras
Includes: Wi-Fi Camera, User’s Guide, Quick Start Guide and Power Adapter
Dimensions: Camera: H 4.0″ x W 3.35″ x D 3.84″, Gross Weight: 0.44 lbs

Infrared night vision! It’s like having your own Predator goggles. Retail value: $299. I’m giving one away, right here, right now. You can enter below, and/or on the pawcurious Facebook page ! See the entry form for all the usual fine print. Good luck!
Congratulations to Jillian C, the winner!

Filed: Giveaways, Lifestyle, Pet Gear Tagged: ,

A Dog’s Holiday Wishlist

One of my favorite holiday traditions is going over to Fox5 News and doing a bit with Rancho Coastal Humane Society talking about the dogs’ holiday wishes (next to being adopted, of course.) Just me, Santa, and a bunch of adorable dogs all doing our best to avoid any sort of Ron Burgundy stereotypes about San Diego programming.  Here’s the segment with the 6 adorable pups. :)

It’s always hard to pick just 6 items, but here is what we presented this year:


1. The ThunderShirt ThunderCoat

It’s a Thundershirt AND an adorable trenchcoat. ThunderShirts are renowned for their anxiety-reducing gentle pressure, and now they are coupled with a preppy coat or a cable knit sweater for that nervous pup in your life who’s panicking about that big elf shimmying down the chimney as we speak.



2. 2 Hounds Design Dog Collars

2Hounds uses luxe textiles and solid brass hardware to make beautiful collars that are long-lasting, elegant, and sure to impress even the most discerning canine.


3. Chief Furry Officer Silver Sterling Paw Pendant

CFO makes items for pet lovers ranging from custom iphone covers to diamond paw prints (the designer began with a history in fine jewelry.) The silver sterling pawprint keeps your pup close to your heart (but we already knew that.)


4. Bottle Buddy dog toy

I never review toys Brody hasn’t personally dragged around the house with great gusto. The Petlinks Bottle Buddy uses recycled plastic bottles to give your pet a toy with a satisfying crackle (and you can replace the bottles when they are worn.) For more aggressive chewers who can’t play with a toy like this, I’m also a huge fan of toys by Bionic.


5. Kurgo Loft Booster Seat

Got a dog who can’t bear not to look out the window? The Kurgo booster attaches to the car’s seat belt and gives your pet a lift so he or she can see the world passing by. Don’t forget to also use a pet-approved safety harness in conjunction with the booster to make your car ride fun AND safe!


6. Life is Gruff All Natural Dog Treats

Christmas cookies are a tradition, but dogs don’t do well with sugar cookies, those thumbprints with Hershey’s kisses on them, or really any of the other sugar-laden goodies we devour too much of each year. Life is Gruff makes dog-appropriate, all-natural gourmet treats (with wheat free and sugar free lines as well) so you can enjoy your gingerbread man guilt-free without making your dog miss out on the fun.

Stay Tuned For Giveaways!

I will be giving away several of these items as well as some other great dog goodies over the next few days, kicking off this afternoon with a Motorola Scout1 Wifi Pet Monitor! pPETS-16222233t300x300

Filed: Blog, Features, Giveaways, Lifestyle, Pet Gear Tagged: , , , ,

The 2012 Howliday Gift Guide is here!

Happy Holidays! I’ve been lucky enough to attend both Global Pet Expo and SuperZoo this year, skulking about the aisles in search of my favorite pet items of the year, and fortunately for us there was plenty to choose from. I’ve teamed up with the pet enthusiasts at Blog Paws to bring you some suggestions from the BlogPaws Great Gifts for Pets Holiday Gift Guide. (The guide in its entirety is viewable at the Blog Paws site.) Here are some of my favorites for under our tree, which if fate and the banks smile upon us will be up at OUR NEW HOUSE about two days before Christmas!

1. Soggy Doggy

I can tell you from personal experience that wet Golden + hardwood = bruised tailbone. Not fun. The Soggy Doggy Doormat® is made from millions of textured, ultrafine strands woven together to create “noodles” that absorb 5x more water than regular cotton doormats! The durable, microfiber chenille doormat has a non-skid backing, and is odor-free and super quick-drying. It’s so velvety-soft that it works as a travel bed and crate-liner too. Plus, the product is available in a variety of colors and sizes to compliment any home’s interior. From $39.99-$84.99, the Soggy Doggy Doormat can be purchased at

2. FURminator deShedding Tool Vacuum Accessory

For the millions of pet owners who simply love their FURminator deShedding tools, here is great news: FURminator now has a vacuum accessory that fits on to your tool for a faster and cleaner pet grooming session. Compatible with small, medium and large size FURminator deShedding tools for dogs and cats, the new product features two removable heads to adjust tool size, and two attachments to fit most vacuum brands.

FURminate and… ZIP… the fur is in the vacuum.

The Furminator Vacuum Accessory retails for $19.99. FURminator products are sold at pet specialty stores, professional pet groomers, veterinary practices and rescue organizations, and are also available online at

3. Cool Blue Dog Hoodies

Just in time for the cooler temperatures that come with winter, dog owners of shorthaired, smushed-faced breeds can take comfort that Cool Blue Dog Apparel has got them covered, literally! Cool Blue Dog Apparel just launched their new hip hoodie line which will be perfect for keeping our Bulldogs, Pugs, Boston Terriers, French Bulldogs and other hard to fit breeds warm, comfortable and in style! Click here to see them now:

These hoodies retail for $56-$58. And though they are marketed for your favorite broad chested brachycephalic breed, I see no reason why you couldn’t put your longer nosed barrel chested dog into one of them if hoodies strike your fancy.

4. PetHub ID Tag

The holidays are a prime time for pets to get lost, with all the hubbub and travel of the busy season. Give your pet the gift of reassurance. Each PetHub QR tag links to a comprehensive pet profile that includes multiple contacts, critical medical information and more.  Every tag includes a 24/7 Found Pet Hotline number, where operators are available around the clock to help lost pets get home fast. PetHub’s Premium Services include Instant Email Notifications w/GPS Mapping, a nation-wide Shelter Alert System & $3000 of Emergency Medical Insurance.

This holiday season, PetHub is offering a FREE Limited Edition Holiday QR tag with every new or renewed Premium Subscription (you also have the option of a FREE basic tag instead).  And, as a special exclusive offer to readers, PetHub is offering 25% off all Premium Subscriptions. Use code HOLIDAYBLOG25. For more information, visit

5. Thundershirt for Dogs and Cats

As festive and fun as the holiday season can be, it can cause many pets to suffer from severe anxiety and stress. No one likes to come home to a trashed tree or 15 unwrapped presents chewed up all over the rug. Thundershirt can help. With its patent-protected design, the Thundershirt’s gentle, constant pressure has a dramatic calming effect that has already helped tens of thousands of dogs with anxiety problems.  The product is also used and recommended by vets and trainers worldwide. Anxiety experts believe that pressure has a calming effect on the nervous system and may release calming hormones.

Holiday Offer:

For a limited time, the company is offering a FREE personalized stocking and a squeaky toy for holiday purchases! Simply use code GIFT12 at checkout and be sure to type the name you want embroidered in the “Gift Notes” box.  Retail price starts at $39.99.

Shop at

6. Bubba Rose Frosty Cake Pops

OK, this one made me squee. You know how I feel about cake pops. Bubba Rose dog cake pops are made from a pumpkin and molasses cake ball (similar in texture to biscotti) on an edible peanut butter and carob “stick”.

Husband and wife team, Jessica and Eric Talley, are founders of the internationally known Bubba Rose Biscuit Company, located in Boonton, New Jersey, dedicated to providing healthy, preservative-free dog treats; made with organic and natural ingredients and free of wheat, corn and soy. All treats are handmade in small batches in their bakery in NJ using locally sourced ingredients from the U.S. Bubba Rose only uses local cage-free eggs, free-range meats with no added hormones or antibiotics and never any chemicals, artificial flavors, colors or fillers. A portion of every sale goes towards animal rescue.

These can be purchased at and in hundreds of fine pet boutiques around the country.

Retail price: $13.99

I think I know what someone is getting this year!


This is a sponsored post. While BlogPaws compensated me for sharing these cool gifts with you, I retained the right to pick and/or reject items I would not personally recommend.

Filed: Blog, Health, Lifestyle, Pet Gear Tagged: , , , , , ,

SuperZoo- Trends for Fall

Another day, another Vegas conference. I don’t what it is about Vegas, but even when I go for work and behave and don’t stay out late and don’t do anything more titillating than eating nachos at 11 at night in the 24 hour cafe, I still come back feeling like Axl Rose after an all night bender. I guess this is what getting older does to you, when the simple act of walking around a convention floor all day wipes you out.

Nonetheless, it was a good show. I have to say, there was nothing earth-shattering, nothing that will Rock Your World. I don’t think I was expecting it. Perhaps as a reflection of our current economic woes, manufacturers are turning away from the ostentatious gold-plated ostrich leather leashes and collars and thousand dollar gadgets of dubious usefulness in favor of eco-friendly, cost conscious items that put a modern design spin on items already in existence.

The other trend I see more are items meant to help pets in their quest to be more healthy: weight vests and floatation harnesses and several types of dog treadmills. Seems the industry has finally caught on to the obesity epidemic. Glad to see more items out there for us to take advantage of.

I like the current crop of items that are hitting stores. Here’s a few of my favorites:

Green Interactive Feeder


Puzzle feeders are nothing new, bowls that force animals to slow down while they’re chowing down. The Green feeder from The Company of Animals is nice because it’s simple- no hidden drawers that make it difficult to clean, and it’s dishwasher safe. It also has a lip around the edge so if this heat wave continues, you can actually put some broth in it, freeze it, and give your pet a puzzle-sicle.

Collapsible Klip Scoop


If there’s something I say over and over, it’s this: you need to measure your pet’s food. Each time, every time. And oh, how people react, as if I said one should delicately weigh each kibble on a kitchen scale, polish it, and then place it in the bowl with tweezers. I get it, if the cup isn’t convenient, you’re going to eyeball it, and you’re going to overestimate the food, every time. Popware for Pets has created a simple and elegant solution, a collapsible measuring cup that doubles as a bag clip, so now there’s no excuses not to measure.

The Catemporary Cat Castle/ GeoDome


Every cat likes a cat tree. Apollo would, no doubt, love one. The use of vertical space, the hiding areas, the lounging areas, I get it. Cats love them. But you know, they’re pricey. The Refined Feline has introduced a cardboard version that provides all the benefits at a fraction of the cost. And if it gets torn up, you won’t be too torn up- just get a new one.

KittyPod also has a version- the Geodome– that you can customize by adding or taking away detachable pods. I featured this on my Facebook Color Feed.

Not a new product, but speaking of KittyPod, the original pod itself is quite striking in person. I kind of want one, for me.

Ruff Wear Float Coat

Brody has a life jacket. All good surf dogs do. However, it is, like most life jackets, bulky and a bit unwieldy. I fell in love- LOVE, I tell you- with Ruff Wear’s designs this week. The float coat is sleek, sturdy, low-profile, and filled with thoughtful features such as a well placed handle on top and reflective trim. The hiking packs, with various sizes depending on how much you want your dog to carry, are fantastic too. This is at the top of our Christmas wishlist.

Major news? Well, Hills is reformulating Science Diet, which I thought was kind of a big deal. No more chicken by-product, and no more corn. I believe the official statement was somewhere along these lines: While we continue to feel that our ingredients had and still do provide excellent nutrition, we have reformulated our foods in response to overwhelming consumer demand for these changes. So good on them for listening. I have another bit of exciting news from a company I’ve spoken highly of already, but I’m waiting on their official announcement to write about it. Stay tuned.

And just for giggles, let me remind you that no Vegas trip is complete without an Elvis sighting.


There will be an extreme dog grooming reality show someday. Mark my words.

Filed: Blog, Daily Life, Lifestyle, Pet Gear Tagged: , , , ,

Giveaway Tuesday: Designer dog beds from!

Brody’s dog bed was turning into a sad and sorry thing, a tattered vestige that much like Linus’s blanket, he didn’t want to part with despite its obvious state of despair. I’d try to hide it, and he would go drag it out of the closet and back to the bedroom. Every time I thought about throwing it out, he’d follow me with such a concerned look that I couldn’t bring myself to toss it, despite it being a bed only in the most academic of senses by this point.

So when, a manufacturer of really nice dog beds, offered me a bed to review in conjunction with a giveaway, I said, “Great!” As much as I like doing giveaways for you all, I have been backing off on product reviews because we just don’t need much at this point. But dog beds, well, there is something we could use.

I was so excited when the bed arrived: a sage green plush Ortho-Bliss memory foam bed. When he was younger and still sleeping in his crate, Brody got a small hygroma from lying on a crate pad that wasn’t quite plush enough; it was shortly after that we switched to fluffier beds. Compared to his current bed, this is a Cadillac.


I actually sat on it for a few minutes myself to see if it was really as dense and springy as it felt. It actually feels just like a Tempur-Pedic and is much heavier than the usual egg shell pads I’ve felt in the past. Considering how much time Brody’s spent sprawled out on my memory foam mattress, I figured, this might finally be the ticket to getting him away from that old bed.

He certainly seemed enthused. He immediately came over to investigate as I spread it out in the living room.


Koa, whose bed is still in working order due to her propensity to just flop on the carpet next to the kids’ beds, seemed disinterested. That is, until she got a closer look. Did someone say memory foam?


Poor Brody never had a chance. Old labs win every time. Guess this means I have to buy another.

But you, lucky readers, have not one but TWO chances to win your very own awesome bed that will inspire envy from the household. Pet Dreams is offering two winners the choice of the following best sellers from the site:


Lots of ways to enter, starting by leaving a comment as to who in your house would like to win the bed. For the most chances, like Pet Dreams on Facebook and follow them on Twitter! Enter via the Rafflecopter widget below.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Filed: Blog, Giveaways, Lifestyle, Pet Gear, Reviews Tagged: , , ,

Giveaway: Lele Pets Gift Certificate!

OK, what’s today, the 19th? So as you read this, I should be at the base of Mt. Meru, walking through rain forests, passing a massive fig tree, and looking out for marauding buffalo. I won’t be gasping for air and retching from altitude sickness for two more days. Regardless, I am there are you are here, and to thank you for checking in I have a wonderful giveaway today from LeLe Pets!

If you’re an addict like I am to sites like Gilt or the Clymb, you know these daily deal sites can be seriously addictive, especially if they actually carry things you want. I’ve been on the LeLe Pets site, and my wallet weeps. They carry names you know like Kyjen, Unleashed Life, and more. One lucky reader will win a $25 coupon code: Here’s their info:

LeLePets is a members-only daily deals site dedicated exclusively to our pets. New sales launches daily, Monday-Friday, at 12PM EST. Through its 72 hour sales, LeLePets offers a curated selection of high quality and design inspired pet products at up to 70% off! Our mission is to share our passion for the animals we love and all things design. 1% of annual net sales are donated to the ASPCA.

LeLePets Fact Sheet:

What is LeLePets?

LeLePets is the first members-only daily deals site dedicated exclusively to our pets. Through its exclusive 72 hour sales, LeLePets offers hand-selected, design inspired high-quality products to its members. Our core mission is to share our passion for the animals we love and all things design.

How does LeLePets work?

LeLePets, the exclusive site for pet enthusiasts and online shoppers, launches daily sales at 12PM EST and lasts 72 hours. Membership to the site is free. Once a member of the LeLePets community, you are given full access to daily deals featuring high quality and unique pet goods. The carefully chosen items are discounted up to 70% off. All sales featured are a on a first come, first serve basis as supplies are usually limited due to the steep discounts we offer… so shop early, stay late.

LeLePets and the community

An initiative close to our heart is giving back to the community. LeLePets donates 1 percent of its annual net sales to American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA). LeLePets is strongly against animal cruelty and are committed to being part of the solutions.

About our members

Our members are extremely passionate about their favorite family member and reside throughout the 50 states. Our followers are avid online shoppers and share a passion for design inspired pet items. Additionally, our members are checking back daily to see what new products we’re featuring.

How did LeLePets get started?

Founded by two pet lovers, owners and best friends, Tiffany Leung and Joyce Lerman came up with the concept of LeLePets. They realized there was a missing piece in the flash sale world and that our dogs, cats, birds, horses and other animal family members were not being offered the type of discounts on design inspired pet products that we were seeing for ourselves. The duo, with backgrounds in design and e-commerce, launched LeLePets in response. What’s their secret to success? Tiffany’s determination to search for design orientated pet products while Joyce seeks the most affordable prices allows LeLePets to offer you one of kind products at affordable prices.

To check out LeLe pets on the web, visit:
LeLePets on Facebook
LeLePets on Twitter

To enter, just leave a comment with what you would use the voucher for! (Note: To enter the website you do need to create a free account.) I think the bowtie sale is already closed, but dangit if I hadn’t been trying for months to find one for Brody.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Filed: Blog, Giveaways, Lifestyle, Pet Gear Tagged: ,

5 Top Earth Day Pet Products

So yaay everybody, happy Earth Day! In the last year I have been fortunate enough to see the majestic Amazon in Peru, the natural wonder of Ngorongoro Crater, and the jaw dropping Mahale Mountains in Tanzania. And living in California, well, I can’t complain about our natural beauty here as well. We have an amazing, beautiful, really mind-blowing planet to hang out on. And mess up.

I think it’s a fairly natural fit for people who love animals, who are fascinated by wildlife, to also be sensitive to conservation efforts. When burgeoning populations expand ever further into previously uninhabited areas, when forests are razed to make way for agriculture, well, this affects us all. And I’m actually going to see if my colleague who is now at CDC and was once a researcher with the local mountain lion organization will do an interview with me about the concept of human encroachment, because I find it fascinating. But since I don’t know enough on my own to say anything insightful, I want to limit this day’s Earth Day celebration to something I know much more about: suggestions about ways to spend your money if you’re in the market for some pet products that are good for the planet:  (more…)

Filed: Blog, Fit Life, Lifestyle, Pet Gear Tagged: , , , , ,

A few of my favorite things, part 2

Before we head off into the ale-spattered sunset that is St. Patrick’s Day weekend, I wanted to share the second half of my very, most favorite things I saw at Global Pet Expo. There was much and more there that I loved to pieces, but I wanted to focus on some of the more unusual products, since it’s the unexpected surprises that often delight me the most.

Arte House Vintage Prints


You all know how much I love art, right? And I’m really picky about the aesthetics of what I put on my walls. The combination of wooden print, perfect quotes and whimsicle-without-being-sappy visuals make these pieces pitch-perfect. Next on my to acquire list is the Black Dog Doughnuts sign from the Bailey series. (more…)

Filed: Blog, Health, Lifestyle, Pet Gear Tagged: , , , , ,
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