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Archive for November, 2013

Follow Up Friday #20

Author: MayaAndPierson
November 22, 2013

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Thanks again to Jodi with Heart Like a Dog for hosting another Follow Up Friday. This week’s guest host is Donna from Donna and the Dogs.

I have had a lot of great questions and comments about dog seat belts this week, so let’s jump right in with the recap.

LAST WEEK’S FOLLOW UP

Jodi with Heart Like a Dog asked how to determine the correct size of pet car harness to get. Each brand has a different method, which can make things kind of confusing. So the first thing to do is determine which brand to get.

The Bergan makes it easy to determine what size is needed. All you need to know is the weight of your dog. Kurgo, too, can go by weight, but knowing your dog’s chest measurement also helps. The Ruff Rider Roadie also needs the chest measurement.

Measure your dog’s chest by wrapping a tape measure around the biggest part of his chest. Use the two-finger rule, which means put two fingers under the measure when you do this. The measurement is also called the girth. Maya’s girth is 31 inches. According to Kurgo’s measurement guidelines, Maya would need a large which fits dogs with a girth between 24 and 34 inches. According to the Ruff Rider Roadie, she’d need a medium 2.

Maya's Measurement for Dog Seat Belt

Maya gets her girth measured to see what size of dog seat belt is right for her.

The ClickIt Utility pet car harness requires a different measurement. You have to measure both your dog’s neck and chest in a figure 8. Here’s a video with detailed instructions – Sizing for ClickIt Utility dog seat belts.

ClickIt Harness Sizing

Measuring for the ClickIt Utility pet car harness: Starting at the top, wrap the tape measure around your dog’s chest, then neck, in a figure-8.

Flea with Dog Treat Web for Jones Natural Chews compared the use of a pet car harness to when seat belt laws for people first became mandatory. It took a lot of persuasion (and threats of getting a ticket) to convince people to wear them. Today, it still takes some convincing. Perhaps someday, we will all see the benefits for ourselves and our family, including our pets.

Hawk with Brown Dog CBR said, “I need a longer tether for my harness. I prefer my crate, but my size or rather the crate’s size prevents it fitting into the car. I HATE the harness and seat belt! It always get all twisted whenever I need to lay down. The harness fits perfectly, but the tether is WAY too short to allow any movement.” With the recent research that determined all dog seat belts may not be as safe as we like, a lot of people are considering pet travel crates. But you’re right, Hawk. This is not easy to do for big dogs. There is no way Maya and Pierson’s dog crate will fit in my car. Speaking of tangling in the tethers, the brand I’ve found the best is the Bergan tether. It is sold separately so that you don’t have to buy the whole harness. Kurgo also has a direct connect tether – Replacement Tethers for harnesses.

POOP PATROL

Regarding the importance of picking up your dog’s poop when traveling, Roxy with Roxy the Traveling Dog says, “Very true, because we are always traveling, I have bags in the truck, in my purse, sometimes in my pocket. I always pick up the poop.” Me too! I have poop bags in the car and in all my coat pockets. I don’t carry around a purse so my cell phone, driver’s license, and credit cards are always in my pants pockets, along with a few poop bags.

Sugar with Sugar the Golden Retriever noted about how some parks are beginning to restrict dogs to certain areas. This is because people aren’t picking up after their dogs. So it is very important that we show how responsible we can be when it comes to our furry best friends.

FUNNY DOGS CAR TALK ADVENTURES

The first episode of Maya and Pierson’s car travel video is finally finished! If you missed it, check it out below.

Be sure to give it a thumbs up on YouTube! Maya, Pierson, and I would love it if you’d share it too. 🙂

Snoopy with Snoopy’s Dog Blog said, “I loved the video!! It was very informative, but in a cool and fun way – great job! Looking forward to the next videos – Maybe Maya and Pierson will be getting and Oscar for their performances?”

Thanks so much, Snoopy! They might not get an Oscar, but they got a lot of treats for cooperating so well. When Maya said, “Huh?” in the video, it was because I said the word “cookie”. And Pierson really does need bribing sometimes when it comes to getting in the car.

CONTEST GIVEAWAY

I have a bunch of figurines left over from another website I used to run for animal figurines, so I thought I would give some away. Sorry I’m not giving away something as exciting as pet travel supplies this time. But I will in December, I promise! In the meantime, there is still a chance to win a cute dog figurine. If you’re not interested in one for yourself, it might make a good gift. Or if your shelter or rescue group does auctions to raise money, you can give it to them. The contest is open until the end of the month.

Well, that’s all I have for this week. Thanks for stopping by! And thank you to Jodi and Donna for hosting the Follow Up Friday blog hop!

Dawn with Maya & Pierson

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November 19, 2013

Thank goodness, it is another contest giveaway! Sorry, it is not a pet travel product this time. But it sure is cute. I have a few dog figurines left over from another website I used to run and thought it would be great to give some away. There are a total of five of these adorable shoe & dog figurines available, three brown and two black. They are each 4″ long, 7″ wide, and 5″ tall. The shoe has an opening in it so that you can put in some dirt and a small plant. This figurine can be used both indoors and out. These are a Land & Sea product.

Beagle Puppy with Black Shoe Figurine Brown & White Puppy on Brown Shoe

Contest Details and Rules:
– Since this is a thankful month, tell us in comments what your pet is most thankful for. Then use the Rafflecopter below to submit your contest entry.
– Enter by the other ways indicated on the Rafflecopter.
– Open to those with a shipping address in the Continental US only.
– Contest ends on November 30th, 11:59pm CST.
– Tweet daily for more entries.
– Your likes and follows must be active on the date of the drawing.
– Winners will be chosen using Random.org. Please respond within 3 business days. Winners who do not resopnd within that time will forfeit their prize.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thanks for stopping by and have a wonderful holiday season! 🙂

Dawn with Maya & Pierson

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Poop Patrol While Traveling

Author: MayaAndPierson
November 18, 2013

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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.

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November 17, 2013

Funny Dogs Car Talk Adventures

The first episode of Maya and Pierson’s car travel video is finally done! My dogs Maya and Pierson ride in the car while wearing their pet car restraints and have interesting conversations. In this first funny video from Pet Auto Safety, Maya and Pierson talk about why they wear their dog seat belts. I tried to make it a bit humorous so that it isn’t the same old boring lecture. Watch it and tell me what you think.

So, how do you like it? If you enjoyed it, can you do me a favor and give it a thumbs up on YouTube?

Future videos will be less informative and more fun. Hopefully, the next video will not take 7 months to make. If you’d like to know what making this first video entailed, keep reading. It’s a bit dry, so feel free to skip this next part and leave a comment about the video at the end of the post. You can also leave a comment about the video on YouTube. Thanks everyone! 🙂

SEVEN MONTHS IN THE MAKING

I purchased a nice camcorder and video editing software at the end of March 2013. My camera is the JVC Evirio and the video editing software is the Movie Edit Pro 2013 from Magix. I started using the camcorder right away, but when I first downloaded the software I was greatly intimidated. How on earth would I figure this program out without someone to teach me? I don’t know about you, but reading the instruction manual did not appeal to me one little bit.

So I procrastinated on learning the video editing software. I wasn’t completely putting off this project, though. I started brainstorming video ideas, writing scripts, and trying to figure out how I was going to get a male Australian accent for Pierson.

Once I finally had these things ready, I started playing with the video editing software. I learned by playing with it, and only referred to the manual when there was something specific I really wanted to do but couldn’t figure out how. The first two videos I made with this software are of me drawing the dog Mos and of my dog Maya playing in a public pool.

The next snag in making the Pet Auto Safety video was how to mount the camera in the car. After trying various methods, I finally found a decent car camera mount. The video was now underway. Maya and Pierson wore their pet car restraints and cooperated very well as I drove around town with the video camera set to record. Now that I think I have a pretty good idea of what I’m doing, I believe Episode 2 will take a lot less time to make. Perhaps I can have it ready in January or February. I’d say sooner, except the holidays may hold me back.

Thanks for stopping by and checking out my video! 🙂

Dawn with Maya & Pierson

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Follow Up Friday #19

Author: MayaAndPierson
November 15, 2013

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Welcome to another edition of Follow Up Friday hosted by Jodi from Heart Like a Dog. The co-host this week is our favorite Flea from Dog Treat Web for our favorite treats from Jones Natural Chews.

A comment from this past week, but posted on an article from the week before comes from Sue with Talking Dogs. On our Pros and Cons post, she mentioned how securing three dogs that need to move around was a challenge. I can definitely see how trying to secure three dogs in a dog car seat belt can be a challenge. Even though there are three slots in the back, the dogs can get tangled if they move around too much. Is there one dog who doesn’t mind not being able to move around too much? Perhaps use the middle safety belt and one latch bar from each side to secure him or her in the ClickIt Utility. The other two can wear the Bergan, which has an adjustable tether length and can allow the dogs to move around a bit more. With the really secure one in the middle, they can’t get tangled.

LAST WEEK’S FOLLOW UP FRIDAY

Jodi with Heart Like a Dog mentioned she’d like to find a way for the dogs to try a dog car seat belt on Sampson and Delilah in person. I completely understand. It can be intimidating buying some things online without being able to see it, feel it, and try it on. Read on for my response to Ducky’s mom.

Ducky’s Mom with The Golden Life asked if she could try the ClickIt Utility on a trial basis, such as a 30 day money-back guarantee. Absolutely! We have a 30 day return policy. Unless a piece is missing, such as a tether, 100% is refundable. The only thing I don’t have is a way to provide a return shipping label. Ducky’s mom also asked about the canine car harness brands available at PetSmart. I think it has the Solvit, Kurgo, and their own brand, which I’ve recently learned is actually made by the same manufacturer as Bergan. Unlike the Bergan, it is brown. But everything else is the same. Petco generally carries the Kurgo brand.

Lindsay with That Mutt commented on how my mom’s dog Solo resembles my boy Pierson. Solo came from a terrible hoarding situation. She was extremely shy and after bonding with my mom and stepdad became extremely possessive of them. She had been known to try to bite people coming to visit. But when my husband and I met her for the first time, she warmed up to both of us very quickly. My husband, who is not a big dog lover, fell in love with her. After our dog Sephi passed on and we talked about getting another dog, my husband told me he wanted a dog like Solo. So the search for Border Collies began and we eventually found Pierson, a Border Collie and Australian Shepherd mix.

Solo and Max

Solo now lives the good life in a loving home. My mom’s cat Max was her best bud, but he passed away a couple years ago.

By the way, we had a good weekend at my mom’s. My mom has recovered from lung cancer very well. My stepdad’s health is not so great though. We really worry about him.

Emma with GBGV Life said she loves her dog car seat belt. Hers is the AllSafe, by the way. And she says that her new sister Bailie is adjusting to it as well. That’s fantastic! Sometimes it can be difficult introducing a canine car harness to our furry friends. It’s best to start when they are young, but puppies don’t necessarily take to them any easier than adults. Emma also mentioned how she didn’t see her comment after she posted it. Sorry everyone, my comments are set up to go through moderation. There are a ton of methods to keep the spammers at bay and I choose the moderation one.

Ann with My Pawsitively Pets says Shiner has a canine car harness, but since she has a small car, Shiner doesn’t get to ride in the car very often. Makes sense. Shiner is a big girl and I can see how a small car could be uncomfortable for her, not to mention crowded for you.

WHY SELECT ANOTHER DOG CAR SEAT BELT BRAND

Lindsay with That Mutt said, “I think you make a good point that in most cases, any type of restraint is going to be safer than nothing.” Thanks, Lindsay! 🙂 I couldn’t agree more. In fact, even though Kurgo didn’t rank as one of the best in the independent study completed by the Center for Pet Safety, they have a wonderful testimonial from a customer who said the Kurgo canine car harness saved their dog’s life.

FUNNY MEMES

There were a lot of compliments on this post. I love making these funny dog captions with photos of Maya & Pierson and am so glad you all liked them. 🙂 Here’s an oldie but goodie:

Maya Pierson Cookietown

FUNNY DOGS PREVIEW VIDEO

The preview video is finally done! Alas, I’m not quite done with the full episode yet. Enjoy this 20 second preview today, then stop by again this weekend for the first full episode, which will be about 3 minutes.

Jodi with Heart Like a Dog said this about the 20 second preview video, “I love that Pierson has an Aussie accent. I can’t wait to see the whole video. How did you figure out the video editing? Honestly, I have to learn how to do that!

I bought the movie editing software in March of this year. It has taken a lot of playing around to figure out how to use it and I still haven’t mastered all the features.

Thank you everyone for stopping by and for all your wonderful comments. And thank you Jodi and Flea for hosing the Follow Up Friday blog hop. Have a great weekend everyone!

Dawn with Maya and Pierson

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November 14, 2013

After months of planning (and with trying to figure out how to use video editing software) our first new funny dogs video is finally here. This video stars the cutest dogs EVER, Maya & Pierson. Join them on their adventures in the car as they talk about various things. Sometimes the topic is educational information about pet travel safety and sometimes it is just fun funny stuff. Here is a very short preview video showing you what you can expect.

Please share and give our funny dogs video a thumbs up on YouTube.

The first full length video of episode 1 will be coming very very soon, possibly this weekend.

Thanks and enjoy! 🙂

Dawn with Maya & Pierson

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November 13, 2013

I really hoped to have the preview video for pet auto safety ready today, but I’m having a little trouble with some voice editing. I truly hope to have the preview video ready tomorrow, then perhaps episode 1 by Friday.

Since I don’t have the preview video ready yet, how about some funny dog memes of Maya & Pierson?

Dog Pierson Dreaming of Weekend

Dog Pierson and Mr Monkey Dog Toy

Dog Maya Wearing Glasses

Dog Maya Goofy Grin Kurgo Harness

Maya Go-Tech Dog Seat Belt Journey

For more Wordless Wednesday pet photos, check out the blog hop below:

 

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In a recent study conducted by a nonprofit organization called the Center for Pet Safety, the ClickIt Utility dog seatbelt was determined to be the safest. If other pet car harnesses fell short, what are some reasons you should still consider them?

THE NEED TO MOVE AROUND

The biggest reason to consider another brand over the ClickIt Utility harness is because some dogs will absolutely not tolerate the kind of restriction enforced by the ClickIt. The more a dog doesn’t like it, the more he might struggle. And the more he struggles, the more likely he is to hurt himself. He may also decide to chew through the car harness, making it completely useless.

Dog Standing in Pet Car Harness

Maya can also stand when she wears her pet car harness. Generally, I keep her tether shorter than this. I also have the floor covered with the Kurgo Backseat Bridge.

The ClickIt Utility harness is the safest because of its ability to keep your dog very secure. So if your dog won’t sit still, you may have to compromise some (but not all) safety for comfort by using a dog seatbelt that gives your best friend the ability to move around.

PRICE

Another reason to consider another brand is price. A lot of time and research went into designing the ClickIt Utility, so its price is high. And it is not just high to cover the costs of development, its price reflects its quality.

THERE ARE OTHER QUALITY BRANDS AVAILABLE

There are other quality pet car harnesses that can be considered. Unlike the Center for Pet Safety’s report in 2011, which tested only four brands, the study completed by them in 2013 tested several brands and the study DID NOT equate to 100% failure. A number of brands passed. Consider the Ruff Rider Roadie or the AllSafe brands as your next choice. These are also higher priced than many other brands, but again, this price is reflected in their quality. The Bergan is less expensive and is a good brand to consider for dogs under 75lbs. The Kurgo Tru-Fit or Go-Tech is a good brand to consider for dogs over 25 pounds and under 75 pounds.

Pierson Blue Go-Tech Dog Car Harness

At about 50lbs, Pierson is in good hands with the Kurgo Go-Tech dog car harness.

ANY BRAND PROVIDES AT LEAST SOME SAFETY

Even the brands that failed the Center for Pet Safety’s test provide some safety. For one, your dog is less likely to be a distraction when he is secured in a dog seatbelt. Hopefully, you haven’t been in many car accidents. But how many times have you had to stop suddenly or swerve out of the way of danger? While substandard pet car harnesses may not do any good in a car accident, they may provide some stability in sudden stops and swerving.

Don’t let the media hype about the safety of pet car harnesses keep you from considering the safety of your best friend. Yes, many brands are inferior to the ClickIt Utility. But even the ClickIt has some shortcomings. And many brands still provide some measure of protection.

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Follow Up Friday #18

Author: MayaAndPierson
November 8, 2013

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Wow! Another week has gone by already. Time sure does go by fast. Let’s see what has happened in this week, shall we?

FOLLOW UP FRIDAY #17

Jodi with Heart Like a Dog said, “Oooohhhh… my little mind is excited thinking of the reason you might not have been feeling well. Can’t wait to hear what it is.”

I apologize to all of you for making you guess as to why I was out of the loop for two weeks. I realized later that I might have misled you all into thinking I was expecting. After all, usually when it is a good thing a woman isn’t feeling well it is because she is pregnant. Alas, despite the best efforts of my husband and I, I don’t think that ship will ever leave the harbor. I am almost too old and I have interfering health issues. In regards to health issues, there is hope on the horizon. I shall soon see whether there really is a cure for fibromyalgia.

Hawk with Brown Dog CBR said, “Yep, I chewed through the seat belt strap that snapped into the seat belt thingy. The Humans bought me a new seat belt that fastened to the seat belt itself. I chewed through the seat belt…that was expensive I hear. They bought me a different seat belt, but the strap is too short so my Human is looking for a longer one. Sigh…”

Oh my goodness, Hawk, this is so so common. It is one reason why the ClickIt Utility may not be good for all dogs. Despite its best safety features, some dogs simply will not tolerate being that restricted and will chew through the harness. If you’re worried your dog might, perhaps consider buying a cheaper dog car harness first to train with, then working up to the better one. A cheaper one may or may not hold up in a car accident, but at least it will help keep your dog from being a distraction and from getting thrown forward in a sudden stop. Also, consider this blog post: How to Keep Your Dog from Chewing through His Dog Seat Belt.

Compare Five Dog Seat Belt Brands

Dog seat belt brands listed left to right, top to bottom: ClickIt Utility, Ruff Rider Roadie, Bergan, Kurgo Tru-Fit, Kurgo Go-Tech.

PROS AND CONS OF VARIOUS DOG SEAT BELT HARNESS BRANDS

Gizmo with Terrier Torrent, Mollie with Mollie’s Dog Treats UK, and Snoopy with Snoopy’s Dog Blog love that all the pros and cons are listed. Mollie loves the harnesses that can be used for walking too. So does Snoopy. Snoopy uses the Kurgo and is relieved to see the size he wears did not fail in the study conducted by the Center for Pet Safety. Snoopy, however, didn’t care for how loose the Kurgo dog car harness was when he walked with it on. It seemed to fit fine in the car but was loose upon walking. I’m interested to know, Snoopy, is it the Kurgo Tru-Fit you have or the Kurgo Go-Tech?

Callie, Shadow, and Ducky’s Mom with The Golden Life asked, “Curious about the amount of restriction with the Clickit: Callie prefers to lie down on the back seat; and once buckled in, does not move much if at all. Shadow prefers to sit in such a way that she can lean back against the seat facing the window. Would the Clickit allow for my dog’s preferred seating “arrangements”?”

The ClickIt Utility is restrictive but it does allow your dog to sit or lie down in any preferred position. Your dog cannot stand, however. And once they are buckled into their preferred position, it will be difficult for them to move out of it. Despite how terrible being so restricted sounds, it is really the safest way. The more your dog is restricted, the less tossing about that will occur if you get into a wreck. Despite safety, however, the ClickIt may not be ideal for comfort on especially long road trips. I’m still debating whether I will make Maya wear the ClickIt Utility harness or a different brand when we go to Texas this December.

Dog Seat Belt Car Video Clip

Maya & Pierson can’t wait for the video to come out! They’ll be famous. 🙂

MAYA & PIERSON DOG CAR VIDEO PRE-PREVIEW

I’m glad you are all looking forward to the video. I have a preview video which will be just a few seconds long and will hopefully be done this weekend. Then the three minute video of Episode 1 should be ready next week. The only thing I am waiting on is the guy doing the voice for Pierson. He has done most of the voice already (you’re going to love it because he uses an Australian accent), but there are a few corrections I’d like him to make. And there is one correction for Maya’s voice, too, that needs to be done.

Episode 1 is informative but also has a bit of humor so you’re not completely bored. Please keep in mind that it is only the second time I have ever done video editing (my first one was of Maya swimming at a public pool). As indicated in the title, Episode 1, I have ideas for several more videos. While Episode 1 is mostly informative, I hope the following ones will be mostly funny and cute. Stay tuned!

CONCLUSION

Yay! The weekend is almost here again. And it is a three day weekend in which my husband and I will be using to visit my mom and stepdad in Missouri. Maya and Pierson will stay with some friends of ours since my mom’s dog Solo and my Pierson will very likely not get along because they are both very dog aggressive. So I will miss Maya and Pierson, but I will get to see my mom again, which is good. So what will you all be doing this weekend?

Dogs Solo and Rocky

My mom’s dogs, Solo and Rocky, chilling out on the porch in Missouri.

OUR HOSTS

This week’s Follow up Friday is hosted by Jodi with Heart Like a Dog and Emma with My GBGV Life. In case you’re curious, GBGV stands for Grand Basset Griffon Vendeén, a dog breed developed hundreds of years ago in the Vendeé region of France. Cool, right? The best part is both Emma and her new sibling, Bailie, wear the AllSafe dog seat belt, rated next in safety right after the ClickIt. Way to go guys! And thank you for hosting this week’s Follow Up Friday.

 

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November 6, 2013

For the past several months, Maya, Pierson, and I have been working really hard on a fun new dog car adventure video. And we’re almost done! Here are some images from the upcoming video:

Dogs Seat Belt Car Video Clip

Maya & Pierson give some tips about pet travel safety. Both say to wear a dog seat belt. Another tip from Pierson to Maya, “Don’t lick the driver!”

Video Scene Pierson Dog Seat Belt

Pierson tells us why he wears a dog seat belt in the car even though he stays in his seat and doesn’t distract the driver.

Maya Dog Seat Belt Video Clip

Maya says it is important for dogs to keep their head and paws inside the car at all times.

These and other cute cartoons are in the video too:

Dog Distraction Clicking Cartoon

Like cell phones, dogs can be a dangerous distraction in the car.

Dog Distraction Driving Cartoon

Don’t allow your dog to sit in your lap when you drive!

Stop by our blog again soon to see a video preview and the finished video of Episode 1!

For more great photos from pet lovers across the web, check out the Wordless Wednesday blog hop below:

 

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