Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Bark 4 Beer Dog Collars

bark 4 beerb4b collar
Sometimes, you just catch notice of a wild gadget. I've not much of a beer drinker. On a good day, I'll have a Corona with a lime and the lime is what makes all the difference. Still, I couldn't turn my head away, when I heard about this intriguing gadget.

The Inspiration

Our dog accessory of the week is the Bark 4 Beer dog collar. This came about when the two creators were sitting by a pool one day drinking beer. There was no beer bottle opener to be found. That's when they came up with this idea. It's neat because you don't lose the bottle opener and the beer will not spill onto the dog because it's retractable.

You can get the collar for $14.95 USD. It only comes in the color black. Even better, they offer a matching leash and collar for $22.95 USD. These collars are best suited for medium to large dogs. If your dog has a neck that's smaller than a Cocker Spaniel or other similar dog, this would not be ideal for them.

New Year's Eve

With New Year's Eve being one of the biggest drinking holidays out there, I wish you all a safe and happy holiday celebration. Most importantly, don't drink and drive. No celebration is worth the risk, and it's always better to be safe than sorry. If you are going to drink abundantly, have one of the people you're with be a designated driver. Nothing is worse than regret.

If you would like to learn more about these collars or order one for yourself, please visit the website. See you in 2010.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Christmas Wishes

Holiday Photo
Hello TKD Readers!

I just wanted to wish you all a very, merry Christmas. For all of you who don't celebrate the holiday, I wish you a great day tomorrow.

With New Year's not too far behind, I will still be posting but not as frequently until the new year. My next post will be next week. Until then, everyone!


Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Last Minute Christmas Gifts

This year, I was excited when I finished my Christmas shopping five days before. However, there are many people still out there scrambling to get their last gifts.

For those of you who know a friend or family member who are dog fans, here are some gifts you may want to consider at the last minute:
*(These are suggestions solely for people who live in the United States).

  • Kong Toys Kong Toy
    These are the tried and true toy for any dog. Their shape is unique and the inside is hollow so you can stuff it with peanut butter, cheese or your favorite dog food. A busy dog is a non-destructive dog. Their prices range from $5 to $17USD.

  • GreeniesGreeniesThis holiday season, Greenies has put out special holiday gift boxes of their famous treats. You can get anywhere from 17 large treats to 96 teenie treats for $30USD. Go to the website and you can get a buy one get one free coupon for their product.

  • Outward Hound Backpack Outward HoundThis is great for the hiker who loves to go outdoors or the person who loves to walk around the town. This comes in sizes from Extra Small to Large and is priced around $15USD.

  • DogglesDogglesThese are great protection for dogs during windy days or on days where the sun is just too strong. If they like to stick their head out the window, when riding in the car, it will keep things from hitting their eyes. In the winter, if it's snowing, it will keep the snow out of their eyes as well.

  • Dog BedsDog BedDog beds come in all shapes and sizes. You can get something as little as a donut bed for $10USD or elaborate as a custom-made one for much more money. The Petco Cuddler bed looks like a great buy for $18USD. It's a great way for your dog to take a nap or a way to entice them off your bed when you go to sleep at night.

When in doubt, you can never go wrong with a dog stocking full of dog toys or a Santa hat for that dog owner whose dog you're not certain belongs on the naughty or nice list. :)

Well, I hope you all have made great progress on your holiday shopping. Do any of you have any favorite ideas for last minute gifts?

Monday, December 21, 2009

In Honor Of The Troops!

Today, two things are different for me. For one thing, my DSL is down so I'm writing this from my cell phone. The other is, I'll be veering slightly off-topic for a subject is close to my heart.

Every day, our armed forces are out there protecting their country and helping other countries achieve stability in a chaotic environment. This just isn't the United States but also countries such as England, Australia and others. Some of the soldiers are lucky enough to have a dog as their fellow soldier and companion. But most have only their platoon members. They live in dangerous conditions and do this selflessly for the countries they've sworn to defend. Then there are those training and serving at home.

Thank you guys! I hope that wherever you are during this holiday season, you have peace, joy and goodwill.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Dog Calendars

2010 PADS Calendar

2010 PADS Calendar

There's nothing like the beauty of a wall calendar. I've always had a calendar in my house. Even with all of the technology that's been created, nothing compares to the beauty of seeing gorgeous pictures that change every month.

A calendar is a great gift to give out at Christmas time. Everyone can use one. They make them about every topic imaginable. Dog calendars are always a huge seller. One of the calendar creators, For The Love Of Rescues, had their 2010 calendar sell out.

I came across these calendars and think they would make ideal gifts for the dog lover in your life. Better yet, all the profits from these go to animal charities.

Charity Calendars

ARF 2010 Celebrity Calendar

This calendar is from Tony LaRussa's Animal Rescue Foundation. It features celebrities with their pets. I was very surprised to see Chelsey Sullenberger (the pilot who safely crash landed the U.S. Airways jet on the Hudson earlier this year) , as well as others on this. It is $15USD. Best of all, it has both dogs and cat-loving celebrities. Check out the site.
Bad Rap

This organization is one that helps Pit Bulls by rescuing them and educating the public on the beauty of these incredible animals. They have two types of highly stylized calendars. They may be a little pricey at $19.99USD but if know know a person who is a fan of the breed, it may be well worth it to take a look at the My Dog Is Family or the Happy Endings calendar.
Nascar Pets Calendar

2010 NASCAR Pets Calendar Car Racing is the largest spectator sport here in America. NASCAR is synonymous with this sport. This calendar features racing giants like Matt Kenseth, Tony Stewart and Dale Earnhardt, Jr., as well as media celebrities like Jamie Little and John Roberts. All proceeds benefit the Greg Biffle Foundation, which was founded by NASCAR racer Greg Biffle in 2005 to improve the well being of animals. The cost for this calendar is $13.99USD.
PADS Charity Calendar

Pacific Assistance Dogs is an organization in Canada that has been training assistance dogs for the past 22 years. They train all types of dogs whether it be to assist with a hearing-impaired individual or those who have been affected by a physical disability. They even offer the option of personalizing the calendar. These sell for $12.00. You can even get them express-mailed if need be. Take a closer look here.
Penguins and Paws
If you know someone who loves the NHL, the Pittsburgh Penguins created a special calendar for 2010. It is one of the pricier selections out there at $23USD but the proceeds of the sales will benefit Animal Friends, an organization which is an organization in Pittsburgh that began as a shelter yet has evolved into so much more, and the Animal Rescue League of Western Pennsylvania, which helps out homeless pets too.

Calendar Collections

There are two websites I found that you can get your pick of calendars:
The Animal Rescue Site
At this site, they give you a choice of 9 calendars you can order. All of the sales will help benefit homeless dogs. Calendars start as little as $3.99USD.
This is an organization based in Great Britain that helps transform the lives of of blind and partially-sighted people across the UK by working with The amount of calendars is numerous and if you live in Europe, it may be easier to get a calendar before 2010 begins. Calendars start at £4.99.

Well these are some of my favorites. Are there any calendars that you guys like that I may have missed? If so, leave a comment below. I hope you all are enjoying the weekend and thanks for stopping in.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Jingle Bells

Singing Dogs

When I was a kid, I loved hearing the singing dogs on the radio. I thought it was so cool to hear dogs bark Jingle Bells. Around this time of the year, you may catch Jingle Bells by the Singing Dogs. This song was released in 1955 by Don Charles. The hours put in were numerous since they don't have the technology that we have today.

These dogs had quite a following and Life Magazine--as seen in the photo above--had written a follow-up article on the dogs used in the song. Those dogs were Caesar, (German shepherd) Dolly, (a oodle) Pearl, (a terrier) and King(the other German shepherd). The producers did not want these dogs pigeonholed, so they put Oh Susannah on the B-side.

In 1970, a DJ found it lying around and decided to give the record a spin. It turned into a smashing success. RCA was so pleased by this turn of events, they re-released a newer edit of it that same year. Pussy the Pinscher,was added for the newer edit.

The dogs may be long gone, but their legacy remains. In honor of these dogs, here is their famous song:

Jingle Bells by the Singing Dogs

If you would like to read more about this group please visit:

Thank you all for stopping in.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Photos of the Season

Christmas Honey
Hi Everyone!

Today' s topic is about spreading the holiday joy. Below are a few pictures that I think do that well. Hope you all are having a great week. Enjoy! :)

Christmas Dog by Tree

Christmas Pug

Reindeer Dog

Christmas Dogs

Photo Resources

Eye Fetch
Morgue File

Have a great night everybody!

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Note To Readers

Hi Everyone!

I hope you all had a good weekend. Usually on Mondays I have a new post ready to go. However, I am on a deadline for my last class of the semester and have work as well. Therefore, I won't be able to post until this Tuesday.

Until then, I'd like to post a topic for discussion for all readers:

What is your favorite dog breed and why? Come on, don't be shy.

Please drop a comment. I'd love to hear from you guys. Thank you all for understanding and I look forward to writing back on Tuesday.

Elena :)

Too Kool Doggies :)

Friday, December 11, 2009

Winter Safety Tips

Winterize: Part III

Chicago is one of those towns that are notorious for long, cold winters. We get lots of wind here along with snow and ice storms. Still, there are other places that have colder weather for a long period of time.

With the fierce cold of winter, in addition to walking tips, I am finishing up my Winterize series with general tips for you.

Winter Canine Care Tips

  1. Limit your dog's time outside. If the temperature is below freezing (32°F or 0°C) a dog can be susceptible to hypothermia or frostbite.

  2. Dress them for the weather. This is especially the case with short-haired dogs. For these dogs, in addition to a dog sweater for indoors, you may want to pick up a dog coat as well for the out dogs. Many of these dogs do not have hair covering their underside.

  3. Watch Your Puppy! With the holiday season in full swing, many people receive adorable puppies as a Christmas or Hanukkah gift. Any puppy under six months old will be much more affected by the cold because their immune systems are not fully developed. Any time your puppy is out, your should be out with them.

  4. Watch Out for Antifreeze! Antifreeze, is extremely toxic for dogs. Dogs are automatically attracted to its sweet scent and will not think twice about licking it. Many times, it's ingested but the effects on the dog are not noticed until it's too late.

    Most antifreeze is made with ethylene glycol. There is another formula made with propylene glycol that is a much safer bet. Sierra Antifreeze has a frequently asked questions page that explains the differences pretty will. However, it's a good bet to keep your dog away from any liquid that has leaked from a car parked outside.

  5. Use Pet-Friendly Salt Substitutes! For the last two years, I've bought pet friendly salt substitute during the winter. These are usually called ice melters. They come in smaller packages and cost more than rock salt but works fairly well on melting the ice. The salt is shaped in tiny, rounded pellets compared to the jagged chunks one finds in a bag of rock salt. Safe Paw and Petco are great substitutes that are environmentally friendly too.

  6. Keep a towel handy. Just a simple walk down the block will get them pretty wet. Wiping their underside and paws off as soon as you get in will will stop them from licking and get rid of any salt.

I hope you've enjoyed this series of articles. Any feedback would be especially helpful. Thanks again for stopping in.

These are my tips what are yours? I hope you all have a great weekend.

Winter Related Posts
Dog Sweaters
Winterize Part I
Winterize Part II

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Walking Your Dog In Winter


Winterize: Part II

This time of year, the winds pick up, snow comes down and ice forms everywhere. Taking your dog for a walk can become much more difficult especially if you live in a place where you can just let them outside into your back yard. Still, some of us don't have that luxury, so here are some tips to make those winter walks more bearable.

Winter Walks Safety Tips

  • Use a reflective leash or collar. There is less visibility in winter and just like walking at night, drivers may have trouble seeing you if you walk near a street.

  • Wear gloves. Gloves give you better ability to hold on to the leashes when you're out with the dogs. I love mittens and have worn them quite a bit when I walk Cookie and Gigi and as warm as they keep my hands, it's easy for one of the leashes to slip off my wrist.

  • Don't let your dogs off the leash! Snow will cover up a dog's ability to track scents. As nice as it is to let them romp in the snow, it's much easier for them to get lost and not be able to find their way back.

  • Wear boots with good traction. If you are big on walking your dogs this is a must.

  • Carry a flashlight if you're walking them at night. Some flashlights are small enough to fit into the palm of your hand. I have a purse-size flashlight that is really tiny but provides a great source of light at night.

  • Modify your schedule. Now that winter is here, I know that Gigi and Cookie need a minimum of two walks a day. In the summer, I was able to take them out more. Still, I don't want to lose the exercise benefits of that extra walk. So, I'm making a point to have a longer walk to keep their exercise level on target.

  • Dress your dogs accordingly. Some dogs will be fine as is because their outer coat is warm enough for the winter. However, if your dog isn't, you may want to consider dog coats or even dog boots as a form of protection.

Well, these are my tips, what are yours? In case you missed part I, you can check it out here. Have a great day everybody!

Monday, December 7, 2009


Snow Boots


With winter just around the corner, it helps to be prepared as a dog owner. Today, I am going to talk about dog booties, which are sometimes referred to as dog boots. They may look silly on a dog but in the harsh winter weather, nothing could be better to protect their paws from the snow, ice and salt.

Why Booties?

Dogs skin on their paw pads can get easily cut from the rough, snowy surface. If the hair around the bottom of the paw is long, it can form tiny snowballs between the pads that can be difficult to remove. Also, salt can get caught in the paws' crevices. Rock salt is commonly used by most cities and towns. It's also toxic for dogs. If they are licking their paws after their walk, that's a hazard waiting to happen. Booties, will keep their feet dry and clean.

Their prices vary. You can get a set of Pawz rubber dog boots which come in a 12-pack for as little as $11.00 USD or a pair of MuttLuks dog boots for roughly $45.00 USD. These brands are the two most popular I've heard of. They usually stay on.

The Drawbacks

While booties may be a good idea for some owners they do have their disadvantages:
  • Some dog boots can fall off easily.
  • They may look silly.
  • They can be costly.

Maybe this type of accessory isn't for you. If that's the case, then I recommend applying Vaseline on the bottom of the paws or perhaps a similar ointment to protect the paws. It will form a shield and can be wiped off when you get home.

The only time I've used dog boots, was when I had my larger dogs, Cosmo and Elvis. With Elvis being a Rhodesian Ridgeback, he would get cold quickly and I thought it was a good way to keep him warm. I bought some inexpensive booties from the local Pet Supplies Plus and I was lucky if they only fell off one time during the walk. Other times, they would fall off more. Since then, I've haven't used them but if there's a quality product out there and when my dogs' paws have been correctly measured, I may try them again.

Do any of you use booties or dog boots? Do you like the idea or do you think they are totally unnecessary? Thanks again for stopping in.
Related Winter Post:
Dog Sweaters

Thursday, December 3, 2009

True Inspiration


I've always thought that dogs are pretty incredible. Then, there are times that I come across a story that is truly inspirational. I read about Eric Melvin.

Becoming A Dog Owner

Two years ago, he picked up his ideal Australian Cattle dog from a breeder in Colorado as a puppy. Like a good owner, he took Angelyne to puppy kindergarten. However, at 13 weeks of age, Angelyne wouldn't come when he called. The instructor tried to see what would happen if they dropped a bunch of telephones behind her. Most puppies would jump away being startled from the loud noise. Angelyne had a minor reaction because of the whoosh of air, not the sound. After taking her to the vet to check her hearing, and the veterinarian confirmed Angelyne was deaf.

Overcoming Adversity

At first he was unsure how he would train a deaf dog but after doing internet research he learned of ways to raise and train a deaf dog. He tried American Sign Language, but for some reason that was not working for the duo. Instead, he made his own signs such as thumbs down means "Sit" and thumbs up says "Good Job". Angelyne has learned up to 40 special commands since then.

Bringing out the Best

This former communications and marketing specialist takes Angelyne to schools with special needs children to show them how to overcome adversity. He has performed in several demonstrations and motivational events all over Colorado since then.

Mr. Melvin is looking to start a foundation in order to help bridge the needs of special needs children to special needs dogs. If you would like to read more about this extraordinary pair please visit the article at the Greeley Tribune. If you would like more information to help Mr. Melvin's foundation you can e-mail him at:

Thank you all for stopping by. Have any of you met dogs like this? Do you own a special needs dog?

Other Inspirational Dogs
Gabriel's Angels

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Q & A with Anthony Holloway

Some dogs can be very picky about what kind of food they like. Others love to eat but have allergic reactions to certain ingredients in dog food. That's why I was so thrilled to learn about K9 Cuisine.

K9 Cuisine became the answer to this difficult predicament. Known for it's top-notch customer service, finally, there's a dog food company that sells food that all dogs can enjoy.

K9 Cuisine is located in Paris, Illinois carries a huge variety and offers some really great specials. Please join me in welcoming the owner and CEO of K9 Cuisine, Anthony Holloway!

Elena: Hi Anthony! Welcome to Too Kool Doggies.

Anthony: Thank you, it's great to be here.

Elena: Fantastic! Let's get started.

Q: What inspired you to create

A: K9 Cuisine was born from our own frustration with sourcing quality nutrition for our own pet. We had adopted a dog with severe food allergies. Our yellow lab Daisy, was allergic to grains – a common ingredient in most pet foods. Once we found a food she could tolerate, it became very difficult to maintain a consistent supply of her food. We had to either drive 140 miles round-trip or order online. We tried both but neither was a very good solution.

At the time, our online provider was charging $30 to ship a 30 pound bag of dog food. The service was horrible as well. We were constantly running out of food when our shipments had not arrived and we could not feed Daisy other foods without making her ill. After a great deal of frustration, I established with a mission to provide quality pet foods with rapid order turnaround, consistent supply, and reasonable (free) shipping.

Q: How many years have you been in business?

A: We started in early 2007. Our site launched on May 15, 2007.

Q: What type of work did you do before K9 Cuisine?

A: I was the president of a small manufacturing company. We made specialty products for industrial metal finishing. I was there for 18 years.

Wow, that's quite a long time to be working these days.

Q: How does your business differ from a more conventional online store such as PetSmart?

A: We differ from conventional retailers in so many ways. From the beginning we wanted to be different by selling only the highest quality products. We also provide free samples.

Our advanced inventory system provides visitors real-time inventory communication to alert the visitor as to whether the item is currently in stock. Because we stock our own products, our customers' orders ship out the same day.

Email communication provides customers real-time information regarding their order status. We pride ourselves on unsurpassed customer service. We do not outsource this part of the business. That includes answering our own phones and live chat. Our employees are educated and trained about our products.

Best of all, we provide free shipping on most of our orders.

Q: What trends have you noticed in the past year?

A: While the state of our country’s economy has caused most of us to be more selective about our purchases, our business has continued to grow each month. People are realizing the economic advantage to feeding their pets quality nutrition. With higher quality foods, you feed smaller quantities and the pet stays healthier so there are fewer trips to the vet and fewer illnesses requiring less medication.

Q: What are some of the most popular items you carry?

A: Grain-free dog food is by far the most popular category. We sell a pretty wide variety. Horizon, Nature's Variety & Wellness are the most popular. Also bully sticks are very popular chews.

Q: How has social media impacted your business?

A: Social media is a great tool. We use it to connect with customers and friends. It allows us to have a reach that was previously unimaginable for a small business. The benefit for our business is we do not advertise.

Our customers are our best spokesperson. The amplification of “word of mouth” by social media is phenomenal. We are a huge beneficiary of this.

Q: What do you like best about blogging and social media?

A: K9 Cuisine is a value-based company. Our blog is a great way to communicate those values — quality nutrition, safe healthy training, successful pet rescue, and only the highest quality products. I like the ability to personalize a relatively impersonal experience.

Social media allows us to put a face on the company. We can communicate directly to our customers without channeling our message through slick ads. Our message is real, it’s sincere, and it is immediate.

I have also made incredible contacts with major influences in the media and the pet food industry through our social media networks.

Q: What do you find most rewarding about what you do?

A: Connecting with our customers. It's wonderful helping pet owners and their four-legged friends.

Q: What direction do you see your company going in the future?

A: I see us continuing on our current path helping pet owners in need and helping dogs have a higher quality of life.

Q: What lessons can you share about building a successful business from scratch?

A: Find a niche and stay focused on delivering value to customers.

Thank you Anthony for taking the time out visit and educate me and my readers. To learn more about K9 Cuisine, check out this video and drop by their website. You can also become a fan at Facebook or follow Anthony on Twitter. If there are any other questions or comments you have for Anthony, please leave them below.

My final question goes out to you all. Do any of you have dogs that are in a similar situation?


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