Puppuccino

Owning a dog brings exciting life experiences: watching them walk up the stairs for the first time, giving them their first bath, and letting them try their first puppuccino from Starbucks. Duncan had a lot of stomach digestive issues when we initially got him, and they lasted well over 2 months. He was up at least every hour or two during the night, needing to go out! It was quite a nightmare. Thankfully, now his stomach has stabilized and we decided it was finally time to take the boys to get their first puppuccinos! ┬áThey were already excited when they got in the car, and they had no idea there was an end prize. Once we got to Starbucks, we ordered drinks for the humans and asked for the puppuccinos. Important thing to know, you need to have “proof of pup” when you are ordering a puppuccino, so make sure your furriends are in the car when you go. We were excited that they were willing to give both dogs a puppuccino of their own ­čÖé To say they loved these little cups of whipped cream would be an understatement, Duncan was licking so fast whipped cream was going everywhere. These little pup-friendly Starbucks treats are a must for your pup!

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Please share you and your pup’s puppuccino experiences below ­čÖé If you know of establishments that offer other pup treats, let us know! The boys are always ready to taste test and provide a review!

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Slow Feeder Dog Bowl

Having an almost 6 month old puppy means lots and lots of dog food being consumed… at an astronomical rate! With Duncan it has been a continual struggle to make sure that he doesn’t choke on his food, or eat too fast and throw it up moments later. We quickly learned that a cute, simple dog bowl could not solve our problems. Duncan’s first slow feeder bowl was from the clearance section at Petsmart, it was from the Martha Stewart collection. It had three little “obstacles” in the middle to slow him down a little bit. For 2 new, clueless puppy owners, this was amazing to us and it definitely increased the time it took Duncan to inhale┬áhis entire meal. Duncan had gone from consuming his meal in 30 seconds, to about 1 minute… it’s all about baby steps, right? However, I managed to forget it at my Mom’s house one weekend, and panicked. Before I had even arrived back at my apartment, I had ordered the Outward Hound Fun┬áFeeder Bowl off Amazon. The bowl looked a little intense, but I am a dog parent who is afraid of anything happening, including bloat. Thanks to Prime shipping, I received the bowl 2 days later and was ready to put it to use. OMG, it was way better than anything I could have ever expected. We have been using the bowl for around 2 weeks now, and it takes Duncan almost 10 minutes to eat his entire meal!!! An added bonus is how humorous it is to watch Duncan eat out of this bowl, the last few pieces go round and round before he is finally able to grab them. His tongue will catapult individual pieces out of the bowl and he scrambles to chase down the single piece. I seriously can not recommend this bowl enough, it has worked wonders for us and Duncan ­čÖé

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Duncan about to┬áeat out of his Fun Feeder bowl for the first time ­čÖé

Please comment below the methods y’all use to slow down your pup’s eating!

Dog Park Necessities

There is one big thing about having a five-month old puppy… they ALWAYS seem to have energy. It takes a lot of play time to get Duncan tired, and the simplest solution we have discovered is the dog park. This allows him to exhaust himself in about 30 minutes to an hour, which is a fantastic thing. When it comes to Duncan, the saying “A tired dog, is a good dog” definitely applies. During our dog trip visits, I have discovered a couple very important things to bring.

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Here is Duncan being a good, clean dog….

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…and here is Duncan after discovering mud puddles.

Here is my list of dog park essentials:

  1. Leash
  2. Dog treats (to get your pup’s attention or to help with training)
  3. Tennis ball or a throwable toy
    1. WARNING: I do not recommend taking their favorite toy, Duncan has had quite a few toys snagged by other dogs and destroyed at dog parks
  4. A toy that can float, if there is a water area
  5. Dog shampoo or baby shampoo
  6. Towel
  7. A large cup/small bucket (in case there is only a water spicket and a hose isn’t available)
  8. Travel pack of sanitizing wipes/baby wipes (to wipe paws off before getting in the car)
  9. Water bottle with portable dog bowl, to hydrate your pup ­čÖé
  10. Phone/camera to capture your little monster going crazy!!!
  11. A spare potty bag or two, in case they ran out.

Please comment below your dog park essentials! ­čÖé

Happy Valentine’s Day

Just wanted to share some love from our boys to y’all, including a couple bloopers ­čÖé

Our tricks to the perfect dog shoot:

  1. LOTS & LOTS of patience
  2. Treats
  3. Even more treats
  4. Make sure there aren’t any people and/or animals out to cause distractions
  5. We always try to run them for around 3-5 minutes to guarantee that puppy smile
  6. Have two people, one to take the photos and one to control the dogs

 

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Camping Bastrop State Park

In honor of Valentine’s Day approaching, my boyfriend, Brent, and I decided to take the dogs camping to celebrate love. We, of course, procrastinated quite a bit to make the reservations and were left with only one option, Bastrop State Park. In our eyes it was the perfect place, they were dog friendly┬áand it is only an hour away from us.

There are two important things we did not know about Bastrop State Park until we arrived, the forest fire that affected 96% of the park in 2011 and the flooding that broke their dam in 2015. To say this state park suffered is an understatement, but it is truly inspiring that they are still open and actively working to recover from this loss.

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Duncan and Finley looking out at the skeleton of a forest that remains.

I was very nervous at the idea of taking the dogs camping, considering we had never done it. I wanted to make sure we were over prepared, that every single emergency was accounted for. Essentially, I wanted to pack┬áBrent, Finley, Duncan, my entire apartment, and me… all in my Kia Soul. Packing “light” was not going to plan. I read blog after blog on taking dogs camping/hiking trying to think of everything.

One thing we had to carefully plan, was how to “keep the dogs on leash no longer than 6 feet at all times” per the park rules. I was not game to hold onto a leash every second of being outside the tent. My first initial thought was to buy one of the corkscrew stakes that go in the ground and the cables that attach to it. However, the cables were too long and it was pricey. I decided to get a Pet Champion┬ámetal dome tie out stake from Walmart for $2.99, they are a straight stake that gets hammered into the ground (we used a rubber mallet) and it was SO much easier than the usual corkscrew. I attached a Quick Link to hold the leashes, that way we only had to bring one leash per dog! The setup was under $7 and worked flawlessly throughout the weekend.

A great feature of Bastrop State Park is that they have a sister state park within 10 miles, Buescher State Park. We did a three mile trail with dogs at Buescher and it was tiring for all four of us. The heat was pretty brutal for February, so we made sure to pack smart for our little hike. We packed in a North Face Mountain Bike Lumbar pack, it is small but capable of caring the essentials and comfortable. Our pack included 4 water bottles, a bag of dog treats, a small first aid kit, doggie bags, a variety of trail mix, our phones, and connected their collapsible water bowls to the front of the pack. It seemed like a lot, but we had gone through 3 water bottles by the end of the trail! We stopped three times on the trail for water breaks to make sure they were hydrated. It was such a rewarding hike, and the dogs were exhausted all evening.

All in all, it was an amazing weekend camping. We loved Bastrop and Buescher State Park, and we can’t wait to take the dogs with us again ­čÖé

Here a list of the things I ended up taking for the dogs:

  1. Food & water bowls
  2. Treats
  3. Bed (for inside the tent)
  4. Dome stake with Quick Link (to attach leashes)
  5. Lots of extra water bottles for hiking
  6. Doggie Bags
  7. Portable water bowls

And here is a list of the things I wish I had taken:

  1. Benadryl ( in case of bug bite reaction)
  2. Extra towels (Dogs always get dirty)