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Archive for the 'Pet Leisure' Category
Welcome to the Scoop that Poop blog hop hosted by Sugar the Golden Retriever. I can’t tell you enough about how important it is to pick up after your dog. This is especially important when you travel with them. Why? Because you want there to be more dog friendly places, right? Parks, rest stops, and hotels are going to be more open about allowing dogs if we pick up after them.
So the next time you travel with your dog, take poop patrol very seriously. Pick up your dog’s poo. If you see someone else’s dog left a little present in the grass or on the sidewalk, it would be really pawsome if you picked that up too. Yes, it is gross. But it is also easy to do.
Join the Scoop that Poop campaign and check out the poop patrol blog hop below.
Even though I don’t have much of an opportunity to travel with my dogs, we go places together all the time. Traveling is a great way to bond and to get out of the house for some adventure. It is also helpful in making sure Maya and Pierson enjoy car rides. Because if the only time your dog rides in the car is when he is going to the vet, he is not going to like riding in the car much.
Visiting places around town is also a great way to help socialize your dog. While Pierson still has dog aggression issues, his ventures away from home have really helped lessen his reactions. He is more comfortable going to new places now that it is part of his regular routine. So if you enjoy spending time with your dogs as much as I enjoy spending time with mine, here are some great places you can go that are just around town.
I never take my dogs with me if I have to leave them in the car. But there are places I can go where I don’t have to worry about leaving them unattended. Let’s say I am craving ice cream. Well, Maya & Pierson, let’s go to Sonic! I can get ice cream for me and a free ice cream doggie dish for them. If you don’t have a Sonic, there’s always Dairy Queen, Sheridan’s, Andy’s, and other such places. Not all of them have a free sample for the dogs but it wouldn’t hurt to ask. If you don’t care for ice cream, go to another fast food drive-through for a hamburger and fries. Share a fry or two with your dogs. Just a little bit, though. You want to make sure your dog doesn’t get too fat for his dog car harness or pet travel carrier!
Sometimes I will take my dogs to the bank too. Lots of banking transactions are online, but there are still plenty of times when I need to go to the bank. Most times when we use the teller drive-through, they give Maya & Pierson a dog biscuit!
If you have prescriptions you need to pick up, why not take your dogs and use the prescription drive-through? Or the drive-through dry cleaners. Can you think of any other errands around town that have a drive-through service?
My dogs’ most favorite places to visit around town are the parks. There’s not just an abundance of city parks but there are also some great nearby county and state parks. Maya loves Shawnee Mission Park which is a park in Johnson County, about a 45 minute drive from here. We don’t go there often because Clinton State Park is closer and nearly as nice.
Off-Leash Dog Parks
If your dog gets along well with other dogs, take him to a dog park. If he doesn’t have a good recall, make sure it is a fenced dog park. There is a nice dog park that Maya goes to near Clinton Lake. It isn’t fenced, but Maya is good about coming when called. She loves this particular dog park because but there is also a nearby stream for her to swim in.
A lot of parks have nice walking or hiking trails. Hiking is a fun on-leash activity that Pierson really loves. There are so many scents and sights to check out. He recently went to the Rotary Arboretum here in Lawrence and had a great time. Except for the lady who had two small dogs running around off-leash, it was a great experience for him. For the most part, he didn’t react to seeing other dogs around. (But I did have to pick him up away from the small dogs so that he wouldn’t hurt them.)
Feel a need to spoil your dog? Let’s go to the pet store and buy a new toy! When Maya and Pierson get low on food, I take Maya with me for a trip to the pet store. Sometimes I take Pierson, but I have to be careful with him because he doesn’t like other dogs. Both love the pet store. Even though I go to get food, most times I end up getting a dog toy too. The main pet stores here in Lawrence where I take my dogs are Petco and Pawsh Wash. The people at Pawsh Wash are awesome and know Maya and Pierson on sight. Sometimes they recognize me too. 😉
Your local humane society most likely participates in a number of events for dogs all throughout the year. Perhaps they have a gathering for adoptions or microchipping. Whatever the main theme, you will also probably find food and drinks for you and treats for the dogs. There may even be some fun dog activities going on. Check out my previous post on the three upcoming pet events that Maya gets to go to this fall. One of them will have a dog park like setting for her to run around and socialize in. The other one has lots of fun activities like dog agility and disc dogs. I bet your community has several pet events a year too.
Don’t be bored at home. Enjoy life and enjoy it more with your dog. You won’t regret it!
Sorry, I don’t have a Pet Safety Saturday theme prepared this week. We have a lot going on and some fun upcoming pet events to get ready for. With the weather getting cooler, but hopefully not too cool, it is the perfect time for gatherings. If you live anywhere near Lawrence, Kansas come by and see us at these special events:
On Sunday, September 22nd, we will be at Crystal K9 from 12:00pm – 4:00pm. Crystal K9 is a doggie day care and pet grooming facility located at 3115 W. 6th street in Lawrence. The event is being held for Responsible Pet Owner’s Day and proceeds will be collected for the Lawrence Humane Society. I’m not sure of all the happenings at this event, but I’m sure it will be one where a lot of pet care information is shared. We will be there as a vendor. And there is likely to be a few fun activities.
On Thursday, September 26th, we will be at the Lawrence Humane Society from 5:00pm – 7:00pm. The Mutt Mixer is held every two months except in winter so this is the last Mutt Mixer event until next year. We didn’t make it to the previous Mutt Mixer event in July because we were in a car accident along the way. Let’s hope there is no rain on this event day and we have a safe drive this time around! There will be food and drinks at the Mutt Mixer. Bring your dog and have them run around with other dogs in the fenced in outdoor areas. It’s like a dog park social event with adoptable dogs as the focus. A few local vendors, including myself, will be there selling our pet wares.
On Sunday, October 6th, we will be at South Park in Downtown Lawrence from 10:00am – 3:00 pm for the Dogtoberfest event. This event is held every year in October and this is the 2nd year in a row where I have been on the committee to help organize the Dogtoberfest event (although admittedly I haven’t contributed as much effort as the other fantastic committee members). It is the third year in a row where I have had a vendor booth at the event. There will be a walk-a-fest, costume contest, disc dogs, agility dogs, vendors, food, and lots of adoptable dogs from various rescue groups from around town.
My Maya will be at all three of these events, but Pierson has to stay home. He does not get along well with other dogs. Maya can be a bit hard to handle at the beginning because she is so excited. But once her initial enthusiasm wears off, she is a perfect lady. She will most likely show off her Kurgo Go-Tech pet car harness. Or if the Sleepypod ClickIt has arrived, she will show off that one.
I know many of you reading this are probably not in the Lawrence, Kansas area. Don’t worry, though. I will share pictures!
Last week, we had a review from Lily Grace’s mom on the Ruff Rider Roadie seat belt for dogs. Lily Grace went on a long road trip from Florida to Connecticut. So our pet travel destination that Tuesday was for Hartford, Connecticut. This Tuesday, we’re reviewing southern Florida, where Lily Grace rode from.
There are so many pet friendly accommodations in southern Florida that finding one will take almost no effort at all. Just visit DogFriendly.com to get a list.
Take your dog for a walk along the Fort Lauderdale Riverwalk. Also in Fort Lauderdale, shop along the Las Olas district and stop for a bite to eat at an outdoor cafe. Some are dog friendly. Or you can shop along the Worth Avenue shopping district in Palm Beach.
And OMD! There are a number of parks and beaches in southern Florida. I’m just going to name a few.
Jonathan Dickinson State Park in Hobe Sound, Quiet Waters Park in Deerfield Beach, Hugh Taylor Birch State Park in Fort Lauderdale.
There are lots of dog parks too. Here’s one in Boca Raton:
Check out this other video of dogs having fun at the beach in Fort Lauderdale:
Doesn’t southern Florida look like fun? What would you and your dog do if your pet travel destination was southern Florida?
We don’t have much of a chance to do any long distance traveling. So we live vicariously by GoPetFriendly, Roxy the Traveling Dog, and other dog blog travelers. Where have they been lately? Some very beautiful and interesting places. See where these dog bloggers have been, then visit their site for more fantastic photos.
Ty & Buster with GoPetFriendly.com go to Salida, Colorado – The above image is actually of Colorado Springs. Salida, Colorado is two hours west and just as beautiful (as is most of Colorado). Go check out GoPetFriendly.com to see Ty & Buster in some gorgeous scenery in Salida.
Roxy & Torrey with RoxytheTravelingDog.com go to Jackson Hole, Wyoming – The above image is actually from Yellowstone National Park. Jackson Hole, Wyoming is known as the gateway to Yellowstone and Grand Teton National parks. Go visit Roxy’s blog at RoxytheTravelingDog.com to see Roxy & Torrey in the beautiful area of Jackson Hole.
Rocco with ToDogWithLove.com go to Highlands, North Carolina – The above image is from a waterfall in the area of Highlands, North Carolina. This photo does not do justice to the photos on Rocco’s blog, ToDogWithLove.com. Go check it out!
Have you been on vacation with your dog yet? Where is your favorite pet travel destination? Share and show us some pictures.
The beautiful weather we have been having lately really makes me want to go to the beach. I’ve been to the west coast and to beaches in Texas, but never to the east coast. There are a lot of nice beaches to the east. But one that stands out as a great vacation spot is Key West in Florida.
According to US News Travel, the best time to visit Key West is between March and May. The weather is relatively mild and it is the off-travel season, which makes hotel rates and other attractions less expensive. So what is there to do in Key West? Lots!
The first thing you need when visiting Key West is pet friendly accommodations. Choose between dog friendly hotels, vacation homes, or RV parks. Be sure to call your stay of choice in advance to verify their pet friendly regulations. Some may charge extra fees or have weight limits.
You can’t go to the Florida Keys without doing a little snorkeling, boating, or fishing. Thankfully, some boat tours are pet friendly! Check out this cool video from Lazy Dog Outfitters:
After a day of boating, do some leisurely shopping along Duval Street. Many of the shops are pet friendly. Have lunch at an outdoor cafe such as Louie’s Backyard. Louie’s Backyard is right on the beach. And next to it is a dog beach! Check out this video:
Still want more stuff to do? Go visit the Key West Tropical Forest and Garden. Then visit the pet friendly Key West Aquarium. I’ve called them and confirmed that friendly dogs on leashes are more than welcome to visit the aquarium. Here is a video of the things you can see there:
Other attractions include the Dry Tortugas National Park and the Fort Zachary Taylor State Park. Another dog park is the Higgs Beach dog park. And other dog friendly outdoor restaurants include the Six-Toed Cat, Harpoon Harry’s, Old Town Mexican Cafe, and Dante’s.
Our two primary resources for this edition of Pet Travel Destination Tuesday is DogFriendly.com and GoPetFriendlyBlog.com. Have you been to Key West? I bet you have much better photos than we do. Please feel free to share and tell us your favorite pet travel distnation. And don’t forget, wherever you travel with your pet be sure they travel safe!
I am so glad spring is finally here! This warmer weather makes me think about vacationing again. And you know, I have to take Maya and Pierson wherever I go. This means looking for a friendly pet travel destination. This week I am looking at Charleston, South Carolina.
After a little research, I found a number of pet friendly places in Charleston. Firstly, there are several dog friendly hotels. The ones I would consider include La Quinta, Red Roof Inn, and Hampton Inn. There are also places for RVing and camping. If my dogs and I get hungry, we can eat on an outdoor patio at the Dog and Duck Food and Spirits, DIG in the Park, Firehouse Subs, and Danielle Island Grille.
I’ve covered the most important aspects of travel – lodging and eating. What about fun stuff? I like gardens and Charleston has quite a few dog friendly gardens. There is the Battery and White Point Gardens, Magnolia Plantation and Gardens, and the Boone Hall Plantation and Gardens. Dogs are allowed on leashes but be aware that they probably are not allowed inside any of the buildings.
To get around, there are a couple of pet friendly carriage tours and other tours. Charleston even sports a pet friendly kayak rental. Let’s not forget about the dog friendly beaches and a number of off-leash dog parks in Charleston. Here are a super cute video of a dog having fun at the beach.
And check out these dogs having fun at the James Island County Dog Park.
Doesn’t Charleston, South Carolina look like fun? Have you been here with your dog? We’d love to hear about your experience. If you haven’t gone and decide to go, be sure your dog rides safe in the car with a dog seat belt or pet car seat.
(Our primary resource for these pet friendly activities comes from DogFriendly.com.)
My Maya loves the snow but she is super-excited that spring is here again. Spring means more trips to the dog park! Before we went for a visit yesterday, I considered some pet safety tips that I needed to keep in mind.
I considered bringing Maya some goodies for training, but decided against it. If it turned out to be too many dogs there, I didn’t want envious dogs jumping in me and trying to search my pockets. Nor did I want to start a fight, as some dogs may try to fight over food.
This same logic applies to toys. Some dogs are possessive of toys so it usually is not a good idea to bring toys for them to fight over. Even though Maya is not possessive, bringing toys might also mean her toys getting stolen.
Vaccinations Up to Date
A lot of dogs visit the park, so there is a greater chance of spreading sicknesses. Not only is Maya vaccinated against rabies, distemper, and the parvovirus, but she also has a vaccination for bordetella. Bordetella is not as dangerous as the other, but it is more common.
No Running with Sticks
Maya loves sticks and she always finds one. And I always get so worried. I’ve heard first hand of dogs running with a stick, the stick getting caught in the ground as they run, and the other end of the stick getting jammed into the back of the dog’s throat. Luckily, the dog I heard of this happening to was okay (after hundreds of dollars at the vet), but it could have been far worse. I know our dogs love sticks, but please be careful.
The only dog park in my area is unfenced. Luckily, Maya sticks around close so I don’t worry about her too much. But anything can happen. What if she sees a wild rabbit at the dog park? Will she run after it and out of my sight? Or will her training kick in? Maya is trained well when it comes to the recall, but she’s never been tested to this extent. If you’re not sure how your dog will do, find a fenced dog park. And always work on your dog’s recall. Coming when called should be something you always work on your dog with, even if it seems as though they’ve mastered it.
How to Handle Dog Fights
This is a tough one. Our instinct is to step in and break it up. But there are ways to break it up without endangering yourself. Here is a great article at ModernDogMagaine.com.
Watch Your Dog
Watching your dog’s behavior is your responsibility. If your dog looks uncomfortable or showing signs of getting agitated, it is your responsibility to remove your dog from the situation before it gets out of hand. It’s nice meeting other dog people, but don’t let your conversations distract you.
Keep Away from the Gate
If you’re at a fenced dog park, try to stay away from the entrances. There are two reasons for this. One, your dog will be less likely to get out and escape when other people go in and out. Two, consider the state of mind of the other dogs coming in. They are excited and tensions are high. When a dog in that state comes in and is immediately confronted by another dog, it might aggravate the situation. Keep your distance. Let other dogs come in and settle down.
Aggressive Dogs Should Stay Home
You might be wondering why I didn’t mention Pierson going to the dog park. Pierson does not do well around other dogs, so I am not taking any chances. The last thing I want is for some small dog to get hurt or some person to get bitten. You might think that bringing such a dog and keeping him on the leash will help, but it doesn’t. In fact, keeping him on a leash might make him feel even more insecure and make him more aggressive.
Pick up Poop
Dog poop is gross so pick it up. It is not just a common courtesy; it is a safety issue because poop carries bacteria and other germs.
Consider Your Small Children
If you have a small child, be aware of their safety too. Be on the lookout for big or rowdy dogs that might accidentally knock your child down. And be careful of your child being around dogs that are playing. Your child could be accidentally bitten or scratched.
Wear Outdoor Clothes
This isn’t so much as a safety issue as it is a reminder. A dog might jump on you. A dog might accidentally run into you and knock you over. A dog with muddy feet might step on your shoes. A big dog might come along and slobber all over your pants leg as he walks by. Know and expect this, and dress accordingly.
Maya had a great time at the dog park. Being a Lab, the first thing she did was find a body of water (which also happened to be a mud puddle). So we even walked a distance to the river so she could go swimming. At the area of the water, I also had to be careful of garbage. While swimming, Maya found a plastic bottle full of liquid. Unfortunately, trash is common at almost every park. So if you see it, perhaps for pet safety and for the consideration of others you can pick it up like Maya did and throw it away.
What else can you think of for dog park safety? Enjoy the spring weather and be safe!
I love nature. My best vacations have been to see the natural wonders of the United States. By far, the most amazing wonder I’ve ever seen was the Grand Canyon. Its vastness was awe inspiring. I’ve often wondered if the Niagara Falls in New York and Ontario, Canada would evoke the same feeling. Someday, I’d like to find out.
On looking into the Niagara Falls State Park website, I was glad to see that many parts of the park are pet friendly. Dogs must be on a leash, of course. They are not allowed in buildings but they are permitted on the hiking trails. According to the website, the park has more than 15 miles of hiking trails. My dogs Maya & Pierson would love that! I also understand from their website that there are a number of outdoor snack stands in the park. So after we’re done working up an appetite while hiking, we can stop for a bite to eat.
Searching online also found a bunch of pet friendly hotels in the area. In fact, there were so many, I couldn’t possibly name them all. If you plan on visiting Niagara falls with your pets, simply do a little search in Google for pet friendly Niagara falls and you will find a bunch of websites with the information. Be sure to call the hotels to verify as some change their policies. Some may also have weight limits and/or may charge extra fees for pets.
If I haven’t been to Niagara falls yet, why should you trust my word on how pet friendly it is? Perhaps we haven’t yet had the experience of visiting, but our friends at GoPetFriendly.com have. They’ve been there with their pets and they loved it! Be sure to visit their site and check it out.
Have you been to Niagara Falls with your pets? How about other places nearby, either in New York or Ontario? Tell us about it!
We had about a foot of snow last week. And we’re expecting another foot of snow today. While my dogs really love the snow, some days I wish I were back in Texas enjoying its milder winter weather. I used to live in central Texas and there are so many pet friendly places there that I miss.
My favorite places to take my dogs were Georgetown Lake, Zilker Park and its connecting trail to the Barton Creek Greenbelt in Austin, and the Bastrop State Park in Bastrop, Texas. I believe much of the Bastrop State Park burned from the major forest fires in 2011, but much of it is still intact too. The image above is a drawing I made in pastels of a scene that I saw at Georgetown Lake when I hiked it with my dog Smokey. This one below is of me and Smokey at Georgetown Lake.
Another great place to visit in central Texas is Enchanted Rock. Enchanted Rock is named from an interesting rock formation which can be hiked or climbed. There are lots of places around Enchanted rock to hike and dogs love it! Go in the cooler weather in winter to avoid the rattle snakes! Here is a review from the DogTipper dog travel experts – http://www.dogtravelexperts.com/postcards/enchanted-rock-state-natural-area-fredericksburg-texas.
Another place to visit in the Texas Hill Country includes the River Walkway in San Marcos. You can almost always see people with their dogs swimming there… maybe not in winter months, but winter in Texas is very short. The Riverwalk in San Antionio is great too, although it is not really a place to swim, but a place to shop. Walk the Riverwalk in San Antionio, then sit down at an outdoor cafe for a bite to eat. The Alamo, too, is off the Riverwalk, but dogs are not allowed. You can see the Alamo very well from the street with your dog, so it would be worth stopping by. GoPetFriendly has done a great review of areas in the Texas Hill Country – http://gopetfriendlyblog.com/pet-friendly-tour-of-texas-hill-country/
I’ve also enjoyed taking my dogs to McKinney Falls State Park in Austin. The park has lots of campsites, trails for hiking and mountain biking, and fishing areas. You can go swimming too and have a wonderful family picnic.
There are many many more places in central Texas to visit. These are just a few of the ones I could think of off the top of my head. Have any of you ever been to central Texas? Tell us about your experience.