Showing posts with label health. Show all posts
Showing posts with label health. Show all posts
Monday, 18 November 2019
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DIY Custom Fitted Belly Band Dog Diaper

As with many things in life, making a DIY dog diaper was never something that ever crossed my mind, until it was needed. What would previously have seemed a little crazy (like my giant senior dog stroller) suddenly became perfectly reasonable. Tailoring custom-made diapers for Oli's comfort? Of course! Only the best for my beautiful old boy.


When Oli's occasional LBL escalated in to accidental wetting of the bed in his sleep (and after our vet ruled out any treatable underlying issues), we tried waking and taking him to pee in the middle of the night, but that didn't resolve the leakage. Beloved Oli was still welcome on all the beds, which we topped with waterproof protectors, easy care blankets, and other accommodations; however, he seemed embarrassed to wake with wetness and tried to lick himself and the bed clean. Not wanting Oli to feel upset or irritate himself with licking, we decided to try a belly band.

Monday, 4 November 2019
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{RECIPE} Calming Chamomile Gelatin Gummy Dog Treats


Chamomile gelatin gummy treats for dogs shaped like paws and bones

Keep calm and snack on! I've been meaning to post this recipe ever since chatting with an Instagram furfriend about their pet's travel stress, and with Guy Fawkes fireworks imminent (call us party poopers, but we hate it!) it seemed like a great time to post about calming chamomile. These gummies are a simple way to make chamomile tea more palatable and (if needed for travel) portable by infusing it into yummy gelatin gummy dog treats. 

Monday, 30 September 2019
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Using a Dog Stroller for Better Senior Quality of Life

Two dalmatian dogs on a walking trail with a large dog stroller

Life with a senior dog is filled with love, but also the sadness of watching them struggle or miss out on things that used to bring them joy.  When Oli started slowing down and retired from being my running buddy, we adapted to life by taking him on a separate walk if Humphrey and I were running.  As he slowed further, separate walkies become our daily norm. It's time consuming, but it gives both dogs the types of exercise they need and enjoy. Now the time has come to include a stroller in our exercise equipment for a better (and safer) senior quality of life. Here's the scoop on our stroller (good and bad) and adjusting to stroller life.

Wednesday, 25 September 2019
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Shelf-Life and Storage for Baked Dog Treats

Homemade dog treats in containers for storage

Our current FAQs, Tips, and Troubleshooting mini-series is all about DIY dog treats and today we're wrapping up the series (and the treats) with a look at the shelf life and storage of homemade baked biscuit dog treats. 

Monday, 16 September 2019
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Why (and How) to Make Homemade Dog Treats

Making bone shaped roll-and-cut dog treats

It's another special segment of our FAQs, Tips, and Troubleshooting topics, and this week we're sharing (and drooling) all about DIY dog treats!  Before I jump into tips and troubleshooting for specific types of homemade dog treats, here's an introduction to why I started making our own dog treats, the potential benefits and pitfalls, and different approaches to treat making.

Monday, 22 July 2019
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DIY Water/Pee Resistant Furniture Pads and Dog Bed Toppers

Senior Dalmatian dog lying on blanket on sofa with pillows

As shared last week, senior dog Oli's increasing issues with bladder leakage have lead to us upping our game on making his favourite places around the house more pee-tolerant so he can continue to enjoy his golden years (pun totally intended...hehe...) in comfort.  I spent so much time looking for suitable bed sheets and protectors that Facebook and Google ads started serving me targeted ads for incontinence products.  There are some great products out there, but I couldn't find the sizes/shapes I wanted to suit Oli and his nesting places. So I decided to make my own by adapting some simple ready-made products to perfectly sized (and styled) custom water/pee resistant toppers for the sofa and our two non-waterproof dog beds (pretty, but vulnerable). 

Monday, 15 July 2019
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DIY Reversible Cotton Flannelette Absorbent Dog Blankets

Elderly Dalmatian dog lying on a flannel blanket and waterproof bed sheet

This post is the second of today's special flannelette DIY double-up, first with a simple single layered flannel blanket and now our reversible double layered blanket . The same techniques can be used on very small pieces of cotton flannelette (or other absorbent material) to make washable reusable cosmetic wipes, "non-paper" towels, etc. or upsized for bigger sheets/blankets. These special blankets were made to be cute and cosy (of course!) but specially sized and created to use as a topper on our senior dog Oli's nightime bedding to help with moisture control.

Monday, 15 April 2019
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Doggone Great Carob "Chocolate" Easter Dog Treat Ideas

Happy almost Easter, furfriends! Today we have two simple no-bake Easter treat ideas using carob to create a dog-friendly version of Easter chocolates. There are lots of ways to create carob treats for your pet, from baked treats to frozen pupsicles and everything in between, but these two are quick, simple, healthy, and you can use then to mold fun festive shapes too!  All of the looks of a fancy treat, but actually easy peasy in the kitchen.

Paw and bone shaped homemade gelatin gummy dog treats with carob

Monday, 25 March 2019
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{RECIPE} Dehydrated Cottage Cheese Dog Treats / Toppers

Seasoned dehydrated cottage cheese in a jar

This simple treat idea can be as basic as a single-ingredient or as fancy as you'd like with optional add-in ingredients. Our dogs LOVE cottage cheese and it's a nutritious lower purine goody (see our notes at the end of the post on purines) that I happily share by small spoonfuls or let them help clean out the empty container. Unfortunately, it's something that's often quite expensive here and has a short fridge life. So how to take advantage of those sales? Hmmm. Freezing is one way to extend the storage, but after experimenting with the dehydrator, crunchy little nuggets of dehydrated cottage cheese have fast become a doggy favourite! Humans might also enjoy them as well. 
Monday, 18 February 2019
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{RECIPE} Simple Spirulina Gelatin Gummy Dog Treats

Close up of a paw shaped spirulina gelatin gummy dog treat

Simple gelatin gummies are a great way to include super-food spirulina in our doggy diet. They're easy to make, mess-free to serve, and make it a snap to share nutrient-dense spirulina in small quantities. No muss, no fuss. Plus, they look pretty cool as well thanks to the gorgeous natural blue-green of spirulina. Unlike my experiments with using spirulina as a tint in baked treats, the colour shines bright and beautiful in a gummy suspension.
Monday, 16 July 2018
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{RECIPE} Super Simple DIY Dog Treats Using Coconut Oil

Paw shaped coconut oil dog treat and pink silicon paw print mold

If you're into supplementing your dogs with coconut oil, here are two of the doggone easiest ways to turn that supplement into treats.  Like my love of gelatin gummies, coconut oil based treats are low-guilt treat in our house, turning dietary supplements into occasional small treats. Win win! I find making simple refrigerated coconut oil treats particularly handy in summer time when coconut oil has a tendency to be liquid at cupboard temperature in many homes (our place included).

Friday, 13 April 2018
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Dog Vision vs. Human Vision: A Life Changing Owner Learning

Dog sitting in the forest with colour, contrast, and clarity adjusted to show the image as a dog's vision might see the scene

👓 Don't adjust your screens...this is the same post cataract surgery walkies photo of Oli as shared in our cataract surgery post, adjusted to represent a typical healthy dog's view of the same scene.   When trying to better understand the differences between human vision and our dog's vision so that we could better assist our senior dog Oli with his post-cataract surgery visual deficits, I had a (long overdue) lightbulb moment that changed everything for us in how we approach our dogs' view of the world. I knew that dogs didn't perceive colour the same way as we did, but never understood the potential implications of dog vision vs. human vision and how I could use that knowledge to better support our dogs with visual cues as well as boost their general fun. 

Monday, 9 April 2018
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Senior Dog Love - DIY Emergency Dog Mobility Support Sling

This is not the most exciting or glamorous DIY post, but if it helps another dog owner at some point then it's totally worth it. As shared in our post cataract surgery summary, Oli's temporary vision loss meant that we needed a pet sling urgently.  We have steps at both entrances, so no matter what, potty time would require assistance and there was zero chance of finding one in our small city nor time for a special order. Oli is a big boy and lifting is no easy task. So I quickly made one with materials on hand while they were on the drive home from surgery.

Owner holding homemade emergency dog mobility sling

Friday, 6 April 2018
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Senior Dog Love - Oli Update - Cataract Surgery Experience

Close up of Dalmatian dog's eyes after cataract surgery

April is here, and this month is all about our beautiful old boy Oli who has his 12th barkday coming in a few weeks!  We are also passing the milestone of six months post cataract surgery and with any further visual improvements from here likely to be slow and minimal at best, it's time we shared a summary of our cataract surgery experience for those of you who have taken Oli into your hearts over the past few years of our blogging or those who may be facing similar uncertainties with their own beloved pets.

Friday, 16 February 2018
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Resolutions for Making This a True Year of the Dog (or Dogs)

Two Dalmatian dogs playing on a black sand beach at low tide during a colourful sunrise

If you're a regular visitor to our blog and/or social media, you know our dogs are very loved and well-cared for but we can always do better! Since it's 2018, I've broken my reflections down into 18 ways to give your dog a happier and healthier life and I'm sharing some of my own shortcomings, learnings, and resolutions at the end of the post.  Let's invest time and energy to make this and every year that follows a better year for our dogs!

Friday, 2 February 2018
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{RECIPE} Blackberry Cheesecake Dog Treats

Homemade pink dog treats shaped like bones and hearts

Old boy Oli is an absolute fiend for blackberries. Our berry patch is in a gated area, but when the gates are open whilst I'm working in the garden, Oli is sure to arrive like a berry seeking bear bumbling his way into the bird netting hoping for a tasty nibble. Since antioxidants are a big part of our efforts to give Oli happy healthy golden years, his berry love is something we happily indulge in moderation. Blackberries are a powerhouse of free radical fighting antioxidants along with vitamins, minerals, and fiber. Blackberries are also a vibrant dark purple-red inside their inky drupelets, and the messy stains on my berry picking fingers inspired me to use that natural colouring to create these Valentine treats.  Beetroot is usually my pink go-to, but Oli was very pleased to see blackberries on the menu. And with the irresistible tang of cream cheese? Drool! 

Wednesday, 31 January 2018
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{RECIPE} All Natural Hot Pink Valentine Gummy Dog Treats

Bright pink gelatin gummy dog treats shaped like bones and paws

These bright pink gelatin gummy dog treats get the pretty pink from combining our go-to simple stock base with plain yogurt and beetroot powder. They only take a few minutes to make (plus set time) and are something that I feel great about giving to our boys as a treat since they are jam packed with healthy goodness. 

Wednesday, 10 January 2018
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Houseplant Safety for Pet-Friendly Homes

Today is Houseplant Appreciation Day, and if you're a nature-loving animal-loving person (like me!) then you're keen to share you home with both plants and pets. With a little extra knowledge and some strategic placement to avoid unwanted nibbling, knock-overs, or (eek!) potty problems, indoor plants and pets can safely share your space. Not only can houseplants beautify your space, they can also help to purify the air (always helpful with pets...hehehe...), regulate humidity, and boost your well-being.

Red peace lily flower on a green background


Monday, 30 October 2017
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{RECIPE} Turmeric Latte Golden Milk Gummy Dog Treats

Turmeric gelatin gummy dog treats shaped like bones

Both of our dogs have turmeric regularly, both in some of their homemade treats and sprinkled directly onto their food.  Sometimes this is sprinkle a coconut oil mixture (see this guest post for how to make golden powder dog food sprinkles) but often I just sprinkle a little powder straight-up onto their food.  We give a number of different healthy add-ins this way to keep things interesting with variety, but turmeric is a favourite of both dogs for smell/taste and us for its potential health benefits.  When Oli was heading into cataract surgery, I wasn't sure whether sprinkling quick-to-stain turmeric on his meals would be a good idea given we anticipated significantly impaired vision during healing. Oli is a very messy eater at the best of times (see our dog-friendly home cleaning tips) and I could imagine things getting rather nasty in a hurry: blind eating, stainy turmeric, white fur, tender face, Elizabethan collar...uh-oh... I decided to whip up a batch of extra potent turmeric gummies for his recovery. This an adaptation of our lightly seasoned and simpler turmeric gummy recipe, as shown in our golden gummy star dog treats,. Full of healthy ingredients, doggone delicious scents/flavours, and low-mess goodness. Yay!

Monday, 18 September 2017
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Senior Dog Love - Oli Update - Vision, Mobility, and More

Before we jump back to fresh fun posts after our blog break and Humphrey's belated birthday bash, I'd be remiss if I didn't update our blog friends on our beautiful old boy Oli's ongoing health and senior dog struggles. Since it's too substantial a share for our usual Facebook updates, I've decided to share a quick update here on the blog.

Elderly Dalmatian dog walking in a field of daffodils