Sunday, July 7, 2013

Dogs Appreciate Air Conditioning!

Mom has a book she reads a lot.  Something about what she calls "quirky holidays."  She is ALWAYS looking stuff up in it. 

Today she said she was looking for inspiration for her blog.  She said her brain was mush and she was out of ideas.  I don't know if she found anything to help her, but I learned something new.  It's Air Conditioning Appreciation Days!

Now I don't know about you, but I love our air conditioning.  We live in Arkansas and it gets HOT here in the summer!  Sometimes it gets over 100 degrees!  I wouldn't want to be outside in that.  OUCH!  Thankfully, I don't have to be.  Mom let's us stay in the house - with the air conditioner!  It keeps me cool and comfy no matter how hot it is outside.  Mom said they also make air conditioners for dog houses.  And I said "They make houses for dogs? Awesome!"

Not all dogs can live in air conditioned dog houses.  But there are some things you can do to help your dog cope with the summer heat.

1.  Your dog needs a place to get out of the heat and sun in the summer time.  Mom has a doggie door in the garage so we can get in and out on our own when she is not home.  If your dogs don't have a way to get in the house, then provide a dog house or other source of shade.

2. Don't leave your dog in the car. You know I go almost everywhere Mom goes. But not now. It's just too hot. Mom said that on 100 degree days, her car can reach 120 degrees or more inside. That's like an oven! Even if you are only planning to leave your dog for a few minutes, don't. Leave them at home.

3. Don't let your dog sunbathe. Our dog Beauty was a sunbather. She loved nothing more than laying out in the warm summer sun. But dogs can sunburn just like people. Mom did not know this when we first moved here. And so Beauty was left to enjoy her sunshine. Only Jack Russell's don't have thick fur and she got a nasty sunburn. I have seen Mom wince when she had one so I can imagine it was just as painful for poor Beauty. Beauty is gone now, but Mom learned the lesson. If we are going to be outside for a long time, she puts sunscreen on our most vulnerable areas, just like she does Carter, Morgan, and Reid. In fact, we use the same sunscreen. I guess if it's good enough for the dogs, it's okay for the grandkids. Mom puts it on our ears and on the bridge of our noses and around our eyes. Sometimes she even puts it on our tummies, but that usually means we are going to be outside for a LONG time.

4. Provide plenty of fresh, cool water. Mom has several big jugs she fills with water and then turns them upside down in our water bowls. Automatic waterers, I think she calls them. These hold enough water for me, Austin and Oscar, and the cats for the whole day. Nothing tastes better than cool water on a hot day!

5. If you must take your dog outside for exercise, avoid the hottest part of the day. Mom and I go for walks or out in the garden either early in the morning or later in the evening after she has fed Dad. Stay out of the midday sun.

6. Consider giving your dog a haircut. I am a short haired boy so I don't have a problem. But Austin is a Yorkshire Terrier and has lots of long hair. In the summer, to help keep him cool, he gets what Mom calls his "puppy cut". (That means she cuts his hair short like mine. He looks a little funny but he sure seems happier - and cooler).

7. Watch where we walk. You wear shoes. We don't. Have you ever burned the bottom of your feet? It hurts! Don't make us walk on hot sidewalks, driveways, or sand.

Summer is here. That means lots of BBQs and trips to the beach and days out in the boat. We want to share it with you. Just follow these simple tips and we can enjoy the "dog days" so summer too!

Oh, and Mom said the book she looks at all the time is called the Quirky Marketing Calendar and you can get one here!

Thursday, June 27, 2013

PAWS of Coronado

Not only is San Diego host to the Loews Coronado Bay Surf Dog Competition, but the people of San Diego really care about animals.  That's why they have places like PAWS of Coronado.

PAWS of Coronado was founded in 2003 as a non-profit animal welfare organization. They believe that “Saving the life of one animal will not change the world, but for that one animal the world will change forever!”  I know this is true.  Being adopted is the best thing that ever happened.  My life has never been the same. 

PAWS of Coronado works with the Coronado Animal Care Facility (ACF) to provide shelter and find homes for the orphaned cats and dogs of Coronado. These animals include those that have been surrendered by their humans, are stray or abandoned, or have been rescued from abuse or neglect.

PAWS and the ACF are committed to 100 percent placement of adoptable animals.  They hope that someday every friendly, healthy, homeless animal can be cared for until their forever family is found. 

One of the best things about PAWS is their socialization programs.  They have both cat-petting and dog-walking programs.  Because they animals at PAWS are relaxed and trust people, they have a much better chance of being adopted.
Come find a forever friend of your very own. You can come meet the cats and dogs daily from 9:00 am until 4:00 pm. Tell them Bob sent you!

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Help Animals Get Adopted

I was lucky.  I found the best forever home.  So did Iris and Oscar and Bitty Kitty.  Puck and Peasebottom.  JoyBelle.  But Mom can't adopt every shelter pet.  There is only so much room at our house!  So for every one of us there is another dog or cat (or guinea pig or horse or rabbit or who knows what) that is still in a cage.  At best they will live in the shelter forever where good volunteers will give them some care and affection.  At worst, they will stay there until they are declared "unadoptable" and put to sleep.

Every pet deserves a forever family of their own.  Help them get adopted!  You can help an animal find his forever home.

Are you a Twitter addict like my Mom?  Spread the word about adoptable pets at your local shelter!  You can do the same on Facebook and Pinterest.  In fact you can share info about adoptable pets on any social media site.  Encourage your friends to repost and retweet and soon everyone will know about these animals.  And if your local shelter has a Facebook page, make sure you stop by and "like" their page.  I'm not sure exactly what that means, but Mom says it's a good thing.

Volunteer to help train and socialize pets at your local shelter.  Dogs with knowledge of basic commands like sit and stay get adopted faster.  Cats that aren't afraid of people have an easier time finding a home.

Check out  Every time you search, they donate a penny to your charity.  Choose an animal adoption organization or a program like the Petfinder Foundation.

Be a foster home.  It's a great way to have a "temporary" pet.  If you can't, help your local shelter host a foster home campaign to encourage others to foster an animal in need.

Add a signature to your email with a quick to about animal adoption.  Mom's even has a picture of a cat.  I don't know about that!  But it also includes a link to our local shelter's website.  She sends lots of email and she spreads the word about our shelter with every one she sends!

Help your shelter organize a pet adoption campaign.  Make flyers.  Take pictures of available pets.  Write press releases.


Tuesday, May 28, 2013

See Dogs Hang 10!

Hey surfer dogs!  It's time for the Loews Coronado Bay Surf Dog Competition!  This year’s competition will be held on June 22, 2013 in Imperial Beach, CA. It is expected to draw up to 40 surf dogs and thousands of spectators from across the U.S.  Mom and Dad used to live in Imperial Beach (before I was adopted) and they loved it.  The sun, the sand, the water - and surfing dogs!  Sounds like the perfect vacation.  Let's plan our trip!

You will want to stay at the Loews Coronado Bay Resort.  Just like the Loews Ventana Canyon is my favorite place to stay in Tuscon, the Loews Coronado Bay Resort is my favorite place to stay in California.  Loews loves pets and they treat me and my friends well!  They even have room service just for me.  (Actually, Mom says any pet can get room service).   And they give me rawhide bones and comfy bedding.  They spoil me almost as much as Mom does!

If surfing isn't quite your thing, head out to Aqua Adventures Kayak Center.  Aqua Adventures Kayak Center offers retail sales, lessons, local tours, rentals, and multi-day adventures. Best of all - they are dog friendly. Please contact Aqua Adventures for complete list of rules. Doggie life jackets are also sold in the store.

After a day surfing - or watching - get Mom to take you to the Wine Pub - especially if it's Woofer Wednesday!  The outdoor patio has a fire pit so it's comfortable even if the night is chilly.  Mom can relax with a glass of great wine while you enjoy a treat or two.

So dust off those surfboards and let's catch some waves in beautiful Imperial Beach, CA. 

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Love is Soft Warm Blanket

My favorite blanket in the whole world is the one Mom made just for me.  It has pretty colors in it and it's soft and warm.  I love it and take it with me wherever we go.  Best of all - Mom made it just for me!

I wish I'd had a blanket like this when I was in the shelter.  It would have been wonderful to have a soft warm blanket to cuddle into when I was alone and afraid.

Right now, Mom and some friends are making blankets for Project Linus.  These blankets will be given to needy children.  Mom found out about them when she worked for the Girl Scouts.  All the girls made blankets and they donated them.  Mom and some of the ladies have been making blankets for them ever since. 

This gave me a great idea!  What if Mom and her friends made blankets like mine and donated them to animal shelters?  And what if I wrote about it and asked all my friends to do the same?  Then lots of little dogs - and cats - could have a soft, warm blanket to snuggle up with.

Mom and I looked and there are  lots of patterns on Pinterest - Mom's new favorite place to hangout.  So after they are done with the blankets for Project Linus, they are going to make some for our local animal shelter.  Won't you join us?  If everyone made just one blanket (or bought one if you are not crafty) and donated it,that would be HUNDREDS of pets with soft warm blankets. 

*Puppy dog eyes*  Pleeaassee???  Warm nose kisses to everyone who donates!

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Do You Have Some Spare Time and Love Animals?

You can help animals in need.  How?  Volunteer!  Every animal shelter Mom and I have visited needs volunteers. 

Shelters all over the country rely on volunteers to help with their lifesaving programs. Each year, thousands of volunteers donate their time and talent to help their local shelter help the animals and they get tremendous personal satisfaction from doing so. We encourage you to join us and become a lifesaving volunteer. Whether you're interested in helping with adoption counseling or socializing kitties, any shelter would love to have you as part of their volunteer family.

Every shelter we have visited told us that volunteers are essential and they could not help the many dogs and cats without them. There are many soothing hands and dedicated hearts that go into rescuing dogs and cats. They realize that everyone has various amounts of time and skills to offer and they appreciate everyone for their efforts great and small.  Donations of time and talent are worth every bit as much to us as donations of money and supplies.

Volunteering is very rewarding.  Most shelters have an organized volunteer program with staff who will help you choose the right volunteer opportunity.  They will also provide you with training and support.  And the animals will provide you with unconditional love every step of your journey.

To find the volunteer opportunity that is right for you, contact your local shelter.  Or click on "Shelters and Rescues" at

Do you have some spare time and love animals?  Don't just sit there - volunteer!

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

We Foster Pets in Need

A few years ago, the vet we went to at that time, Dr. Parker, called to ask for a favor.  There had been a fire at an old abandoned home the night before.  The firemen had found a litter of 3 kittens and their mom inside.  The mom cat was pretty badly burned and Dr. Parker was taking care of her.  But the kittens needed their mom and were too little to be on their own.  Would Mom and Dad take them and care for them until they could survive on their own - or until their own mom got well?  Mom and Dad talked about it for a bit and then said yes.  And that is how we got Tatiana, Katie, and Cobweb and became a foster home for needy pets. 

Mom brought the kittens home and showed them to everyone.  She explained that the shelters did not have the time or the people to care for kittens who were only a few days old and completely helpless.  If we did not care for them until they were big enough to survive on their own, they would die.  By caring for them, we could possibly help them find forever homes.  So they moved into a crate in Mom and Dad's bedroom.  Mom put a gate across the door to keep the rest of us out.  And Oscar adopted them as his own "puppy-kittens" and slept outside the gate all the time and snapped at any of our own cats that tried to go in Mom's room.

It was hard for Mom and Dad to find time to feed and clean and care for them, as well as take care of us, and work.  But they did it.  And eventually, all three of them grew up to be healthy and were adopted by forever families of their own.

Of course, once the local shelters and vets found out that Mom and Dad were willing to foster needy animals, we have had several more pass through our house.  Some were just old and were going to be put to sleep like Angel, the chihuahua who came to live with us until she died.  Some were small and needed extra care like the next litter of kittens, Simba, Duchess, JoyBelle, and Buddy.  Simba and Duchess were just too small and sick and didn't live very long.  But JoyBelle and Buddy made our house their home.  Buddy got cancer and died last year.  But JoyBelle still sleeps next to me every night.  Some have health problems like Kora, the new dog we are caring for right now.  She has a problem with her hip that makes it hard for her to walk and makes her hurt sometimes.  Right now, she has to take pills to help with the pain everyday but Mom and Dad say there is surgery that can help her and are trying to find a vet that knows how to do it and are saving the money to pay for it.

We have had many pets pass through our house since we first took in Tatiana, Katie, and Cobweb.  Angel, Peasebottom, Puck, Webbie, Lucky, Delilah, Marmalade, Peaches, Bubba, Ginger, Chubbs, Tinker, Ringo, Smokey, Bogart, George and Gracie, Ariel, Presto, and many others.  Some stayed for a few days or weeks or months.  Some just moved in and became part of our family.  Mom and Dad loved them all.  I liked some of them better than others but tried to be nice to all of them (okay, most of them.).

Why do Mom and Dad foster pets?  Because they love animals and know that while they can't adopt every dog or cat or rabbit or whatever that needs a home, they can help many animals be adopted that otherwise might not be.  There are lots of animals that need temporary homes for a lot of different reasons until they can be adopted:

■Puppies and kittens that are too young to be adopted
■Nursing cats and dogs
■Ill, injured, disabled or other animals that may need regular medication or medical attention
■Dogs in need of socialization and training in a home or family environment
■Any animal that is highly stressed in a shelter, particularly older dogs and cats
■Previously abused, neglected or abandoned animals that need to form a healthy bond with people
■Animals displaced due to natural or other disaster awaiting reunion with their families

By being a foster pet home, we give them a chance to find a home and love instead of being euthanized.

Could you be a foster pet parent?  Pet fosters need the cooperation of family, as well as flexibility, patience, a compassionate nature and some knowledge of animal behavior.  Many shelters provide their fosters with training, as well as information about the pet’s temperament and medical needs. Most also provide essential supplies, such as food and access to veterinary care.

There are many wonderful reasons to become a foster pet parent:

■Privilege of offering a needy animal a safe, comforting and supportive environment while it waits to be adopted, or reunited with family following an emergency, natural disaster or military deployment
■Help socialize a shelter pet to enhance its adoption potential
■Reduce the animal’s stress, which improves its adoptability
■Enjoy the benefits of pet ownership if you’re unable to keep a full-time pet due to lifestyle or other restrictions

If you would like to become a foster pet parent, contact your local shelter, SPCA, humane society and local rescue groups to learn about specific opportunities in your community. 

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

In Tucson, AZ There is HOPE!

In Tucson, AZ there is a haven for abandoned dogs and cats.  It is a place full of hope and love and care.  In fact, that is the name of this place - HOPE Animal Shelter.

HOPE Animal Shelter is Tucson's only no-kill, community based shelter.  They are a non-profit, mostly all-volunteer, 501(c)(3).  Mom and I like the fact that they absolutely DO NOT put any animal to sleep unless it is suffering.  Being in a cage in a strange place is scary enough!  But HOPE offers  a clean, loving environment that allows socialization and a smoother transition into a forever home.  HOPE ensures that the animals staying there are well cared for both emotionally and physically during this trying time in their lives.

HOPE Animal Shelter has several dogs and cats that are available for adoption right now.  You can see pictures of them on their website.  But you don't have to rely just on pictures.  HOPE encourages you to visit and spend time with a dog or cat before you make a final decision.  They want to make sure you get just the right friend for your home. 

If you can't adopt, but want to help, HOPE always needs volunteers.  It takes a lot of people to care for abandoned animals.  And HOPE is mostly all-volunteer.  Which means they need people.  Lots and lots of people.  There are many ways to volunteer depending on your schedule.  I personally recommend being a foster.  Mom and Dad foster here in Arkansas and I have made lots of new friends that way.  And every once in a while Mom or Dad fall in love with their latest foster pet and it finds a forever home with us.  That's how we got Bubba!

If you can't adopt, foster, or volunteer, then maybe you can help with supplies.  HOPE can use pet food, litter, blankets, towels - all kinds of stuff!  In fact, they have a wish list on their site.  Drop off a bag of cat or dog food the next time your running errands.  Wait - I have an idea!  Maybe you could hold a Go Orange for Animals donation drive for HOPE! 

We love HOPE Animal Shelter for all the love and care they give to the animals at their shelter.  Please, if you live in the Tucson area, check them out.  Mom and I have been together for 17 years!  So see - you really can find a FOREVER friend at your local shelter!

Friday, April 5, 2013

Go Orange for Animals!

Have you noticed something different about my blog? It's ORANGE! That's because I'm Going Orange for Animals!  Yes, it is once againg the time of year where Mom and I turn everything ORANGE. 

Every April, the ASPCA celebrates Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Month. I know about animal cruelty. We live on a dirt road, all the way at the end. Lots of animals are dropped off out here by people who don't want them. Mom and Dad find a lot of them and try to help them. We have found kittens with their tails cut off, dogs with gunshot wounds, dogs and cats that were beaten, some that were starving or sick and just left to die. People can be very mean to little animals like me. So each year, the ASPCA urges supporters across the country to “Go Orange for Animals” throughout the month of April—when the ASPCA’s charter was signed in 1866—to raise awareness for their cause.

It’s fun to go orange! Orange is a great color! Austin has an orange bandanna that Mom bought him. And the ASPCA has some great ideas and suggestions on how you can go orange too! What can you do?

Support Your Local Animal Shelter
Coordinate a ”Go Orange for Animals” event with a local animal welfare group or shelter of your choice and donate the proceeds and/or supplies that you collect. Be sure to alert local media about your event! Possibilities include decorating the building orange and holding an adoption event or donation drive. To find a shelter or rescue group near you, visit our shelter database.

Tie One (or Two!) On
Decorate with orange bows, ribbons and lights. They’ll look great wherever you put them—on trees, your house, over your office door, hanging from your dashboard, on your pooch, even in your hair!

Pimp Your Ride 

Vroom-vroom for animals! Write some animal-friendly messages on your vehicle— “Go Orange for Animals!” or “Celebrate Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Month!” Most auto parts stores sell specific window-marking chalk for writing on your windows. You’ll be surprised by how far a little creative writing can go to help animals!

Play Dress-up 

Open your closet and get out those bright orange pants, shirts, ties, shoelaces and socks and don them every Friday—or any other day of the week—for the month of April.

Sweet Treats 

Organize an orange-themed bake sale for animals at your local shelter or rescue group. Make orange cupcakes or cookies, or even cookies in the shape of cats and dogs wearing orange frosted collars! Set up a table at your school, church, local library, club or office and let people know their purchase of orange deliciousness will benefit animals for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Month! You can also persuade your local bakery to create special orange baked goods and ask if it might donate some of the proceeds to animal welfare efforts.

Show Your Virtual Support
Dedicate your Facebook status, Twitter or blog to the ASPCA during the month of April and encourage your friends to spread the word about the month-long “Go Orange for Animals” campaign!

Grow Orange
Got a green thumb? Plant an orange garden for animals. Ask your local garden center what orange flowering plants work best in your area, and do some creative landscaping. Trim your shrubs into animal shapes, and decorate them in orange bows or lights. No garden? Try window boxes or flowerpots, but do let people (and the media) know that your orange garden is all for and all about animals. Mom went shopping today and found all sorts of orange plants for our garden. It's going to be great when she gets them all planted!

Become an Animal Activist
Visit the ASPCA's Advocacy Center to find out everything you can do to raise awareness for animal rights.

Call or write your local law enforcement officials. Let them know that animal cruelty is a crime and investigating these cases should be a priority.

Help fight for the passage of strong anti-cruelty laws on federal, state and local levels by joining the ASPCA's Advocacy Brigade.

Write a letter to the editor of your local or regional newspaper, reminding them that April is “Go Orange for Animals Month.” Be sure to include a heads-up about your “Go Orange” plans. You can also contact TV and radio stations, letting them know about your event and inviting them to add their unique efforts to the “Go Orange for Animals” campaign.

Last year, Mom bought orange collars so Austin, Oscar, and I can wear them. I am glad she is not going to make me wear a bandanna like Austin. But the orange collar looks cool with my black and white fur!

Blog, Post, Tweet, Pin!
If you have an online site, spread the word about Go Orange for Animals! Spread the word on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and LinkedIn! Turn your website orange this month.

Mom and Dad have been able to save many of the animals they find. But many more have suffered and died just because someone was mean to them. Won't you help us fight animal cruelty? Go Orange for Animals!

Friday, March 29, 2013

Aspen the Yorkie

I am not the only dog with a blog.  My friend Aspen also has one.  It's called "Aspen the Yorkie."

Even though Aspen is one of those furry rats like Austin, she is still pretty cool!  And her blog is full of great information, especially for small dogs like me.  And she is an older dog too - almost as old as me.  That means she has learned a lot so you need to listen to her.  Mom says older people have wisdom so older dogs probably do too! 

Aspen has taught me many things that make me feel better.  From her I found a new shampoo to help with my dry skin.  Both Austin and I get dry skin, especially in the winter, so this was wonderful information. 

I also learned that there is a real dog called a Dorkie!  I sometimes hear Dad call Austin Dorkie - and I think it's a good name for him.  I didn't know there is a "designer" dog called a Dorkie.  Don't tell Austin.  He will think he is a designer dog too!

I have also learned about eye irritations, and having my teeth cleaned (which I hate!).  Mom uses a spray and some special treats to help keep the plaque down but we still have to have them cleaned occasionally.

The best thing on her blog is the recipe she shared for Doggie Bagels.  These are YUMMY!  I love when Mom has time to make a batch for us.  She does make me share with Austin and Oscar.  But I make sure I get my fair share.

If you are a small dog, or an older dog, or a Yorkie dog, or a Dorkie dog, you can learn a lot from my friend Aspen.  I know you will like her as much as I do. 

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

NWA is Singing for Spays!



WHERE: At Dog Party USA located at 912 S Maestri, Tonitown.

WHEN: Saturday, April 27 from 5:30 to 9 pm. Rain or shine.

WHY: Funds to support our goal of 5,000 surgeries in 2013

WHO CAN COME: All dog-friendly, vaccinated dogs are invited to bring their humans!

HOW MUCH: Admission - $25 cash or check



Information: 479-756-1100


You can help SpayArkansas by doing your online shopping with Participating stores, airlines, etc, contribute 1-5% to the charity of your choice. Go to to enroll.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Let's Hit the Road

Spring is here!  Time to pile the pets in the car and head down the highway!  Follow these tips to make our trip as easy and enjoyable as possible. 

1.  Give your car a check-up.  Check your tires, the oil, and the air filter.  Breaking down on the side of the road with your pet in the car is not fun - for me or for you.
2.  Get me a check-up.  If it's been a while since my last trip to the vet, make sure I have a check-up before we leave.  I don't want to spend my vacation in a strange vet's office.  Neither do you.
3.  Bring my shot record or health certificate - just in case I do get sick or hurt, this will help the vet give me the best care
3.  Bypass the traffic jams.  I like riding in the car with Mom but not forever.  Google Maps offers real-time road conditions and traffic updates which allows you to avoid traffic jams that can make me nervous.
4.  Be ready for messes.  I will do my best, but accidents happen.  Be ready for messes by bringing a pooper scooper, wipes, paper towels, carpet deodorizer and ziplock bags to dispose of my - ahem - mistakes.
5.  Pack my food, water and snacks.  New food can upset my tummy.  Not to mention the inconvenience of having to shop for it.  Bring a bag or a few cans of my favorite food from home to keep us both happy.  It's also a good idea to bring some water in case I need a drink before we get to the next stop.  Make sure you bring a dish for me to eat and drink out of too!
6.  Plan where to sleep.  Mom likes to just get in the car and go with no planned agenda.  But this can make it hard when it's time to sleep.  Not all hotels welcome little dogs.  Make it easier on both of us by knowing which hotels are pet friendly.  Better yet - reserve our room in advance so there is no question that we will both have a place to curl up at night.


Sunday, March 10, 2013

Visit Tucson, AZ with PopArtDiva, Pixel, and Tink!

Tucson, AZ is home to Mom's good friend - and my favorite graphic designer - Terri aka PopArtDiva.  She makes most of the designs for my store.  Mom can't even draw stick people very well so when she has an idea for a new shirt, she calls Terri and Terri turns it into art. 

When she isn't busy working on my designs she is a Mom too!  She takes care of Pixel and Stinky Tinky Cat.  Pixel is a Yorkshire terrier like Austin.  But despite the resemblance to the Rat, Pixel is my friend.  Stinky Tinky Cat adopted Terri and Pixel one day herself.  She arrived on their doorstop, decided she liked having them as family, and never left.  That's how cats work.  We have been adopted ourselves like this a few times! 

Mom and I have been to Tucson in the past and look forward to going again.  Not just to see Terri, Pixel, and Tink, although that would be reason enough.  But Tucson is a great place to visit, especially if you are bringing your family.

When visiting Tucson, Mom and I recommend that you stay at the Loews Ventana Canyon.  Mom says the rooms are good and the beds are comfortable.  Plus there is a coffee maker in the room.  If you know my Mom and her coffee then you know this is important!  I like it because they love me!  They treat me like a king when I am there.  I can have room service.  They give me treats and bones.  There are places where I can go for a walk.  I even get a tag when I check in.  It's the best service ever!  Mom says they treat all pets the same way, but I think I get a little extra special attention.  But if you tell them Bob sent you, I bet you will get the special treatment too.  The hotel does charge an extra $25 if you travel with your Mom and Dad, but this is to cover the costs of the extra special cleaning each room gets before you check in.  And they do limit the number of pets to 2 per room.  But that is good.  Who wants to sleep with a roomful of critters?

Once you get settled in your room, there are lots of things to do.  One of my favorites is a trip to Sabino Canyon.  Mom and I like to walk and there is plenty to see here.  Mom says there are even bears here but I have never seen one.  Just to be safe though, you need to wear your leash when you are out and about.  You wouldn't want to lose your Mom or Dad if a bear came!

Another place we like to go is the Pima Air and Space Museum.  Mom and Dad both love airplanes and rockets so this is the perfect place for all of us.  Dogs are allowed at the outdoor exhibits.  Since there are 80 acres of planes to visit, there is enough to keep us all happy.  I get a good walk and Mom and Dad get to look at planes.

Sometimes, Mom and I just like to go for a ride.  There is a great place to do that in Tucson too.  The Mt. Lemmon Scenic Byway is one of the most beautiful drives in the country.  And there are lots of places where I can get out and take a short walk to stretch my legs.  It's nice and relaxing with just me and Mom in the car looking out the windows and listening to the radio or just talking.  Ok, she does the talking.  I just listen.

There are also several dog parks in Tucson.  I love having a park just for me.  We like the Anamax Bark Park.  This is a one acre park divided into two areas - one for large dogs and one for small dogs like me.  There are shade ramadas in both sections with seating, water fountains for the owners and their four legged friends. Waste stations are provided so owners can pick up after their dogs.

Although I bring my own food with me and even though the hotel will bring me room service, I look forward to one tasty treat while we are in Tucson - a bite of Mom's sandwich from Baggin's Gourmet.
Mom is a big fan of the Almost Reuben or the Anasazi Chicken.  Dad always gets the Baggin's Club.  I don't care what they get as long as I get to share.  I like them all!

I can taste the sandwich already.  Terri, Pixel, Tink - are you ready for a visit?

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Join the Great Backyard Bird Count!

I love birds!  I like to chase them sometimes when I need exercise.  Mostly I like to lay on the porch in the sunshine and listen to them sing.  We have lots of birds at our house because Mom puts feeders out for them and keeps parts of the yard as habitat for them.  And every year we participate in the Great Backyard Bird Count!

The 2013 GBBC will take place Friday, February 15, through Monday, February 18.  It s an annual 4-day event that engages bird watchers of all ages in counting birds to create a real-time snapshot of where the birds are.  Mom started participating when she worked for the Girl Scouts.  I was just a puppy then so I didn't help much.  Now I do my best to rouse the birds in our yard so Mom can get a good look at them and count them all.  She says I'm not helping much, but I do what I can!

Everyone is welcome--from beginning bird watchers to experts - even little dogs. It takes as little as 15 minutes on one day, or you can count for as long as you like each day of the event. It’s free, fun, and easy—and it helps the birds.

Participants tally the number of individual birds of each species they see during their count period. They enter these numbers on the GBBC website.  You can also send in photographs of the birds you see for the GBBC photo contest.

The Great Backyard Bird Count is very important for helping birds.  Scientists use the GBBC information, along with observations from other citizen-science projects, such as the Christmas Bird Count, Project FeederWatch, and eBird, to get the “big picture” about what is happening to bird populations. The longer these data are collected, the more meaningful they become in helping scientists understand and help birds.
Participating is easy. To learn more about how to join the count, get bird ID tips, plus downloadable instructions, web buttons, and flyers, visit The count also includes a photo contest and a prize drawing for participants who enter at least one bird checklist online. Portions of the GBBC site are also now available in Spanish at

Friday, February 1, 2013

Make Some Bunny Happy - Adopt a Rescued Rabbit!

February is Adopt a Rescued Rabbit Month!  I have all kinds of rabbits at my house.  I like to chase them when they come in my yard but Mom scolds me.  She says the rabbits live here too and I need to leave them alone.  I have to admit they are cute.  Almost as cute as guinea pigs!

Maybe that's why so many rabbits wind up in shelters.  They are cute and cuddly looking and people buy them on a whim, especially now - in the months before the Easter season.  But these people may not know how to take care of a rabbit.  And that can lead to problems like chewing.  Now the people are tired of the rabbit and have dropped them off at shelters - or worse, just turned them loose thinking they will survive like wild rabbits.

This month I want to teach everyone about rabbits and help get some already rescued rabbits adopted. 

Rabbits are smart and affectionate.  Mom says they can even be trained to use a litter box like our cats.  But just like puppies, they like to chew and that can be destructive.  Mom says that just like new parents baby-proof their home or new puppy parents puppy-proof their home, new adoptive parents of a rabbit must be willing to rabbit-proof their home.  Rabbits should also be spayed or neutered just like I was.  There are too many rabbits in shelters already.  We don't need more babies to add to the overpopulation problem.

Rabbits are not always good pets for children.  Children often want to us up and carry us.  I don't mind being carried.  I'm old and tired.  But most rabbits don't enjoy it.  When a child realizes that their new pet doesn't want to play with them, they may not want to keep it.  And then another rabbit gets dropped off at the local shelter.
Mom suggests that if you are considering adopting a rabbit, you should read about it first.  The House Rabbit Society is a great place to find out about caring for a pet rabbit.  After you get the facts, if you decide a rabbit is the right pet for you, please consider adoption first.  Contact your local shelter or rescue group, Petfinder, or the House Rabbit Society to find rabbits waiting for homes in your area.