A great gift for holiday party hosts with dogs!

This recipe makes about 20 dog treats!

This recipe makes about 20 dog treats!

I recently made pumpkin dog treats for my dogs and to give as hostess gifts for the holiday (hosts with dogs anyway.  They are super easy to make and very inexpensive. Your host will be impressed that you thought of their pup.

Pumpkin puree dog treats:

2 eggs
½ cup of canned pumpkin puree
½ teaspoon of salt
2 tablespoons if dry milk
2 ½ cups of wheat flour
Water (as needed)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  After mixing the ingredients into a sturdy dough, roll the dough out to ½ inch thick and cut into festive shapes.  Back on each side for 20 minutes and you’re done!

Outtake of Zoe eating a pumpkin treat.

Outtake of Zoe eating a pumpkin treat.

Put cookies in an airtight container along with a list of the treat ingredients so the host knows what they’re giving their dog.  Now, await dog kisses.

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Great fundraiser to save heartworm positive dogs!

This gallery contains 3 photos.

  Last night we attended the 2nd Annual Holiday Hope for Hearts fundraiser which benefits heartworm positive dogs at Cleveland Animal Care & Control (CACC).  Through their partnership with Friends of the Cleveland Kennel,  the ‘Plankton Fund’ was created to … Continue reading

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Charlotte is our Dog of the Week!

ecf_538e5439535281223f7e6cabcee536db_2014-12-09-09-27-17Charlotte is a 12-year-old Bichon/Beagle mix living in South Euclid. Charlotte was lucky to find her mom, Stacey, on Memorial Day weekend a few years ago.  A family had gotten her as a Christmas puppy but no longer wanted her. Stacey says, “Charlotte is happiest riding in the car – so she gets to cover a lot of ground in Cleveland.”

Charlotte is an Indians fan and can open a Welch’s juice bottle (twisted on tight and with a treat inside) in less than 30 seconds. Surely the Indians could use that talent for something?

Stacey has this to say of Charlotte’s personality, “A friend always tells me that Charlotte is Marie Antoinette reincarnated. She has an air of entitlement, likes the finer things in life, has perfected the side stare, and can dismiss you in an instant. But I must add, she is very affectionate and lovable, naughty as she is.’

Welcome Charlotte the Dog of the Week family!

Would your dog like to be Dog of the Week? Click here!

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No, you may not give my dog any food – and I mean it!

begHas this happened to you? You invite friends and family over for a special occasion. Everyone sits down to eat and your usually well-behaved dog is now making the rounds to each person trying to find the weak link, (“WL” for short) that will share with them some goodies from the table.  Your dog WILL find that weak link.  If you are lucky, that person will ask if they can give your dog a treat. This is how the conversation usually goes:

WL:  Can I give your dog some of my food.

Me:  Please don’t, he has a sensitive stomach?

WL: Oh please! He doesn’t have a sensitive stomach. Now WL brings the dog into the conversation and speaks baby talk. You don’t have a sensitive stomach, do you? She’s just mean.

Me: I’m not mean, he’ll get sick.

WL: Oh no he won’t. How do you think dogs survived in the wild all those years?

Me: There was never a pack of Yorkie-poo’s surviving in the wild. At this point, someone brings up the election and the topic changes.dog-and-turkey

WL: Looks back at my dog and makes a telepathic deal to sneak him something later when I’m not looking.

Fast forward a few hours and you are in the kitchen cleaning after everyone has left and then you hear that sound. The dreaded stomach lurch sound that you can somehow hear no matter how loud the football game on the television is.  Then you find your pathetic looking dog standing over his regurgitated ‘treats’ and well, you know how the rest of the evening is going to go.  A few days later you start searching google for a voodoo doll of WL!

What many don’t understand is that many holiday foods can not only make pets sick, they can actually kill pets!  Below is an infographic that will be hanging on my refrigerator for all my guests to see.  Feel free to do the same.  Not only is it informative but it provides interesting facts that can help you change the subject of a potentially dangerous conversation.  For example,

WL:  I think they SHOULD build a wall!

Me:  Did you know nutmeg is lethal for pets?

Happy Thanksgiving!

8-thanksgiving-day-foods-that-can-kill-your-dog_50a663860a95b

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Skinner from North Olmsted is our Dog of the Week!

Skinner is a 12-year-old labradoodle who loves the Lakecf_bf9e2062935d6ece34363daf3fd33f0d_skinner-1-1ewood Dog Park and is a Cavs fan!  Skinner’s mom, Renee, says he came from a licensed breeder and he is unaware that he is a dog.  “He thinks he’s a person and loves to curl up in a chair! He is so big, but he is such a lover and cuddler.”

Stay warm Skinner!

Would your dog like to be Dog of the Week? Click here!

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Pet photos with Santa!

It’s that time of year again where we get everyone gussied up and ready to meet Santa! Below is a list of locations where your pet can get a picture with Santa. Know of Santa session we missed? Email the info to Chris@ClevelandDogBlog.com and we’ll update the list!

November:
11/19 and 11/20 from 11:00 – 3:00
Cuyahoga County Animal Shelter in Valley View
Cost: 2 4×6 – $20; USB with digital image $12, both $30

Zack & Zoe's Santa pic from 2010.

Zack & Zoe’s Santa pic from 2010.

 

December:

12/4  @ 6:00
Crocker Park
No cost

12/4 from noon – 4:00
Paws by the Lake
$10 donation

12/11 at 8:00 – ?
Crocker Park 12/11 @ 8:00 pm
No cost

12/16 from 5:30 – 7:30
Cuyahoga County Animal Shelter in Valley View
Cost: 2 4×6 – $20; USB with digital image $12, both $30

12/3,4,10,11,17,18 from 11:00 – 3:00
Cuyahoga County Animal Shelter in Valley View
Cost: 2 4×6 – $20; USB with digital image $12, both $30

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Coping with Canine Diabetes

About two years ago, Zack was diagnosed with diabetes.  It was just after a hectic Christmas when we went to see the vet because he was drinking a lot of water and it seemed to come out of him as quickly as he drank it!  I knew that was a sign of something because since he and his sister Zoe have become ‘senior’ dogs, the vet always asks about their water intake at annual checkup appointments.  Dr. Feeney from Detroit Dover Animal hospital in Westlake knew it was diabetes right away.  After a quick blood test, she confirmed that Zack has the most common form of the disease in dogs which is Type 1. This is insulin-dependent diabetes, which occurs when the pancreas is incapable of producing or secreting adequate levels of insulin. Dogs that have Type I require insulin therapy to survive.

I was scared because, even though I knew diabetes is treatable, it just seemed like this was going to be the beginning of the end. We all dread that time in our pets life when we are faced with the decision to keep treating an illness or put the pet out of their misery and let them go peacefully.  But wait!  Before I take you down this dark path of putting my beloved pet to sleep, its two years later and he’s fine!

diabetes-symptomsBut I won’t deny that it took us a while to get a handle on his sugar level.  First, we had to figure out the correct amount of insulin to give Zack.  Based on his weight, Dr. Feeney knew about where to start (8 milligrams) but it took several weeks of adding/lowering the dose and weekly visits to the vet to check his blood sugar.

There was also the fact that I wasn’t very good about getting the entire dose INTO Zack.  Dr. Feeney showed me how to inject the insulin just under his skin at the back of his neck. She did it so quickly in the office, Zack didn’t even notice.  Unfortunately for Zack, I’m not that good or that quick.  Half the time I don’t think the entire dose got under his skin before he yelp and jerked away causing the syringe to go flying across the room.  There were also a few occasions where I injected myself! Fortunately, my boyfriend is much better at giving Zack his two shots a day.  I only have to do it when he is out of town.

Diabetic dogs often have to adjust their diet just like diabetic people do.  I was already feeding Zack and Zoe a high quality, high protein dog food so we didn’t have to change their food. However, I did stop giving them store-bought dog treats. The high protein, American made and American sourced treats are very expensive. Instead, I cook chicken breasts in the oven at 350 degrees for about 45 minutes and chop them up into bite-sized treats. Zack and Zoe love them!

zackSo here we are two years later and Zack is still his silly self.  He has developed cataracts but Dr. Feeney says that could be due to age.  Now at 14, he and his sister sleep most of the day but still manage to get lots of treats (protein only) and snuggles throughout the day.

I’m often asked about the cost of managing his diabetes and it’s minimal.  I take him to the vet for a blood test occasionally just to make sure things are still at a positive level but that only costs about $16 since I’m not charged for an office visit just to have them draw blood. Also, the insulin and syringes are inexpensive too. I get 100 syringes at Walmart for about $24 and a bottle of insulin is only $12 and lasts quite a while since Zack now only gets 6 fullsizerendermilligrams twice a day.  The only other adjustment I had to make was that when I travel, which isn’t often, I need to hire a dog sitter who knows how to give an animal an injection. When I traveled in the past I could usually find someone to stay with the dogs at my house.  But asking a friend to give Zack injections when I can barely do it myself seemed like a bit much. I did Family Pet Sitters, a local dog sitter who has a diabetic cat and has been a real life-saver!

If you think your pet might be diabetic, don’t panic like I did.  Zack is proof that dogs can still live happy, high quality lives with diabetes. Diabetes is serious and needs to be managed but a yummy chicken treat after each shot makes it manageable.

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Take 2 minutes to help stop puppy mills!

There has been a positive trend taking place among pet stores to no longer sell live animals in their stores.   Instead, the stores offer their retail space to showcase local shelter and rescue group animals for adoption. This is largely due to the fact that pets that arrive in stores to be sold are likely sourced from puppy mills and consumers are aware of it.  With the information that is collected via the Humane Society, the ASPCA and other rescue organizations, it has become widely known that puppy mill dogs live horrible lives and their offspring are often incredibly sick.  To learn more about puppy mills, visit the Humane Society’s puppy mill page www.stoppuppymills.com.

no-puppy-millsBecause of informed consumers, cities and counties have been encouraged to ban the sale of commercially raised dogs in pet stores. Scores of counties around the country are continuing to ban the sale of commercially raised puppies in pet stores, including Albuquerque, N.M.; Austin, Texas; Chicago; El Paso, Texas; San Diego; Los Angeles; and the state of Florida. In New Jersey, Brick, Manasquan, Point Pleasant, Point Pleasant Beach, and North Brunswick.  Ohio’s Toledo and Grove City have also adopted this ban as well.

Unfortunately, no city in the northeast Ohio area has taken that stance but they may soon not be able to do that anyway. There is a bill in the Ohio Senate and House that will take Ohio’s cities right away to implement the ban and will also overturn the Toledo and Grove City bans.

So how do we fight the puppy mills?2-minutes

Ohioan’s need to let their votes dictate how Senate and House Representatives vote. Find your Representatives contact information found at the right. In a two-minute email, you repcan simply state that you oppose senate bill 331/house bill 573 and that you’d like your Ohio Representative to reflect the opinions of their voting constituents.  The ASPCA makes it even easier by writing the email for you found at the right.

Why not just ban puppy mills emailcompletely?

Last week I attended an ASPCA meeting at the Independence library about this bill (senate bill 331/house bill 573). Vicki Deisner, State Legislative Director of the Midwest Region of the ASPCA led the meeting and did an informed and passionate presentation on the legislative ins and outs on why fighting puppy mills is such an arduous and tedious task. Obviously, it would be easier to ban puppy mills completely vs. just making it difficult for stores to obtain dogs from puppy mills, right?

Wrong. There is a long list of reasons why banning puppy mills altogether is nearly impossible. To start, the USDA monitors the mills and frankly has incredibly low standards. In addition farming unions keep pressure on the USDA to keep the standards low to keep their costs low. The fear is that if puppy mill breeders have to clean up their act then there will be a slippery slope into making farmers do the same.  This is probably true but also not a debate we’ll be going into today.

Another reason this issue is hard for politicians to champion is that the Amish community is home to many puppy mills and, in my opinion, not a community any politician wants to appear to be ‘picking on.’

Add to that, that the biggest seller of puppy mill dogs is Petland, headquartered in Chillicothe, Ohio.  I can’t imagine any politician finds it easy to oppose the livelihood of any business headquartered in their state so Petland’s Ohio roots aren’t helping the situation.

Adopt, don’t shop!

adopt-dont-shopLonger term, we simply need to not financially perpetuate this problem. Don’t shop at the stores that sell animals and definitely, don’t purchase an animal from them. There is an abundance of shelters, rescue groups, and even breed-specific rescue groups that have wonderful animals that make great pets. With so many unwanted pets being killed every day because there aren’t enough homes for them, there is simply no reason for puppy mills to exist.

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Franklin Browns life likely saved due to dog seat belt.

You may have already heard that Senator Sherrod Brown and one of his staff were in a car accident last week in Parma.  Everyone was checked out at the hospital and all is well. The news reported that the Senator’s dog, Franklin, was also in the car but didn’t indicate if he was ok. However, we follow the Senator’s wife, Connie Schultz, on Facebook and were happy to learn that not only was Franklin ok, but he is now espousing the importance of dogs wearing a seatbelt while in cars.

We found Franklin’s seatbelt on Amazon for $11.69.  Ms. Schultz says on her facebook page “Franklin is lighter than he looks, as his layers of long fur hide a pretty small frame. This ha819jimbtc1l-_ac_ul115_rness-and-belt system kept our beloved pup in the seat and unharmed during the high-impact collision that sent both Sherrod and his staff driver Will Young to the emergency room.”

No doubt that the outcome would have been dramatically different if Franklin wasn’t wearing his harness.  I admit that Zack and Zoe have been loose in my car 1000 times; however, this was an eye-opener for me. They’re not going to like it, but they will be strapped in from now on.

 

 

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The 2016 Spooky Pooch Parade

The Spooky Pooch Parade took place Saturday, October 15 at Kauffman Park (15450 Detroit Avenue) and it was well attended likely due to the gorgeous weather!  Lakewood Alive,  which is the city’s non-profit with a mission of fostering and sustaining vibrant neighborhoods hosts this annual fundraiser.  A favorite Halloween tradition for Northeast Ohio dog lovers and their families, this popular community festival represents one of the only events of its kind within the region, providing a tail-wagging good time for canine and human guests alike.

Creativity was at an all-time high this year with the dog costumes.  Some of my favorites include the pumpkin spice latte complete with life size coffee cup, the Elliot and ET bike and the incredibly patient dog who wore a bulky kayak all day. However, my very favorite was the ‘Where’s Waldo’ complete with a teacup Yorkie dressed as Waldo. The judges agreed and ‘Waldo” won a year supply of dog food from  Pet’s General Store.

Pumpkin Spice Latte

Pumpkin Spice Latte

Elliot and ET

Elliot and ET

Kayak dog

Kayak dog

Where's Waldo

Where’s Waldo

Zack and Zoe revived their Sid and Nancy role (kudos if you get that reference!) and went as punk rockers.  While they received a lot of ooh and ahs, likely due to Zacks Mohawk, it was quite evident that next year we will need to up our creativity if we have any hope of making the winners list.

Sid and Nancy

Sid and Nancy

 

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