Dogs + food allergies = learning a lot about dog food ingredients.

If you have ever had to deal with food allergies — you'll understand my pain. Finding a dog food that works well for your dog that has allergies can be a painfully long process. On one hand, we have Blue — essentially the dog version of a garbage disposal. He eats everything that he comes across and seems to have no negative reactions whatsoever. Please note that we do not feed him any people food or anything outside his normal routine. However, once he is out in the yard — anything is fair game.

Briggs, on the other hand, flares up and loses hair from a variety of different things. Chicken? Oh heck no. If you feed him a chicken treat, his neck and stomach will be swollen red with a rash within 20 minutes. The list goes on...no grain, turkey, chicken, salmon or buffalo. Raw food diets of rabbit also essentially destroyed him. We've been around the block with trying out foods.

Currently, he is doing quite well on Fromm Pork & Peas. We love Fromm as it is a family-owned business that uses the best ingredients.

Some food & treat favorites:

And, I just had to add the Fat Cat brand toys in there...a little something else for them to chew on. I find these toys to be quite durable.  

Do your pets have allergies? What are some of your favorite foods?

The Do's and Don'ts of Dog Parks

Dog parks are a tricky business. In some respects, it gives your dog a wonderful opportunity to socialize, burn off excess energy, and to learn commands under high stimulation. However, there are a lot of negatives that come with dog parks. While you may have properly socialized or trained your dog, others may have not. Even worse? Many owners will let their dogs loose and not even pay attention to them.

Two incidents at our local dog park have put me off of them and now I much prefer to do doggy play dates with dogs we know.

The first one was when a boxer attacked Briggs. I'm not pointing out the breed to say that Boxers are aggressive. I happen to love Boxers. But I am pointing out there is a size difference between a Boston Terrier and a Boxer. The owner of this boxer was on the other side of the park gossiping with her friends. The boxer pinned Briggs and had him by the neck. It took three people to pull him off. We were screaming the whole time and the owner did nothing. Only when it was over did she come over to see what had happened. I yelled at her and she was furious with me.  As far as I am concerned, not paying attention to your dog at a dog park is inexcusable.

less people.jpg

The second incident that occurred simply amazed me. Recently, a biergarten has opened up in the same park as where the local dog park is. I watched one sunny afternoon as a couple dropped their dog off in the dog park and then strolled over to the biergarten for some beers. This floored me. I would never leave Briggs or Blue unattended at a dog park. Not only for their own safety but also for the safety of other dogs. You never know when your precious bundle will snap at another dog.

Check out this article for some good tips on dog park rules to follow.

A hunter kills a family dog...and walks away.

Zoey

Zoey

This is Zoey.

This is her story in her family's words:  

"This is Zoey's story. I was killed by hunters the weekend of 10/25/13. I went missing on 10/25/13 at about 9:00 A.M. When my family was looking for me they asked some hunters (Neighbors) if they had seen me. They stated they did on 10/25/13 at about 9:30 A.M. They stated they threw sticks at me because I was disrupting their hunting but have not seen me since. On 10/26/13 my family asked the hunters (Neighbors) a second time if they seen me. They said no. My family searched for me every day for hours and hours, shouting, calling, walking miles but could not find me. On 10/28/13 my family found me 30 feet from the hunters (Neighbors) tree stand with an arrow hole through my back and neck. I was left to suffer and die. My body was in clear view of the hunters tree stand and path. It is undeniable to say I could not have been seen. My family loved me and is devastated by my murder. Please help me and my family bring justice to the hunters (Neighbors) who wrongfully murdered me. Share my story to everybody and let the world know I did not deserve to die." 

Now. I come from a state where hunting is almost a religion. My personal thoughts on hunting aside, I do not want this to be a debate on the merits of hunting.  

This wasn't hunting. This was slaughter. A clear and deliberate act of unfathomable cruelty. But -- I will play devil's advocate. What if this was an accident? The dog is brown, she is in the woods, and could be mistaken for the hunter's prey. Let's say the hunters shot her by mistake. Please, tell me one hunter that fires a round, knows it hits an animal, and doesn't go track that animal to see what happened. Seriously. I would like to know. Isn't that the very act of hunting? Shoot, track, kill?

The fact is, accident or deliberate, these hunters witnessed the pain, suffering, and death of this dog and did nothing. Nothing. This is when a person's true character is called into question. An ethical person -- a person with heart -- would accept what he had done and carry the dog to the family. A person with integrity or an ounce of character would have done everything they could have to alleviate the suffering and owned up to their mistake. Not, I repeat, NOT, walk away. And if this was deliberate? There is a special place in hell for these people. Right next to Michael Vick after he hopefully passes from a very painful and debilitating football injury. 

A big thank you - and I want to hear from you!

Hello all,  

I broke one of the cardinal rules of marketing -- though shall keep thy blog updated. Whoopsie...I'm sorry! We moved out of our condo with no yard and into a snazzy new place with a beautiful yard for Briggs & Blue to play in.

I have to say that I am eternally grateful to all of my readers who have reached out to me via my contact form or through Facebook. Not only am I honored that the story has made such an impact, but I am also proud to know that it is making dog owner's more vigilant.

I plan to be  more diligent on updating this blog and will be posting all dog related topics - from dogs stolen, missing, funny dog stuff, and even pet food alerts. Um, have you seen the dog jerky alert?  Feel free to send me topics or things that you would like to see posted about or discussed - and most definitely send me pictures of your pooches!

In the meantime, here is a picture of Briggs & Blue enjoying life in their new yard (we had to cut down a rotting tree - they are in heaven!).

My stick. 

My stick. 

No, my stick!  

No, my stick!  

Follow the yellow brick road...to Oz!

Today's pup comes from Lisa in Olympia, Washington.  

Meet Oz (christened after the Wizard of Oz).

"Are you falling under my magic already?" 

"Are you falling under my magic already?" 

Yeah. I know. I'm dying. That face!  

Oz is an avid explorer. Once he finds his treasures like pieces of bark or old plant pots - he'll tear around the yard with them. One must protect such fine treasures.  

His "king-like" personality shines through when he climbs the old play set in the backyard and slides down the slide or hangs from the rope swing. This is one pup that shows no fear.

"I am king of the mountain!" 

"I am king of the mountain!" 

Oz may have one weakness. That other furry thing in the house. That cat, Sonic. You may or may not see him biting on her tail or chasing her on occasion. Oz admits nothing. 

"Ugh. You know the king likes his latte with skim milk."  

"Ugh. You know the king likes his latte with skim milk."  

Oz spends his days keeping his owners on their toes and bringing genuine joy to their lives.   Oz loves trail walking and greeting all the people he sees. In fact, he thinks everyone should give him a greeting. He is a king, after all.

(although we won't tell anyone that every night the king still sleeps with his first toy, an alligator.) 

"I make people smile. It's what I do."

"I make people smile. It's what I do."

Would you like to see your dog featured here? Send pictures to tricia (at) thestolendog.com.  

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