Monday, February 23, 2015

Decoding Your Dog

If you're like me - and if you're reading this blog I think we can guess that you are - we are among the more than 90% of owners who consider their dog a member of the family. This is wonderful except it does come with a caveat: dogs are another species, speak a different language, and try very hard to learn our language. They are masters at learning our body language. The human animal has not been as proficient at learning theirs and in the past have trained them with choke collars, prong collars, electronic collars, pushing them around, hitting them, a veritable litany of what amounts to animal abuse. Many of us have long since moved forward to a kinder, gentler and certainly more effective world. As much as we know, there is always more to learn. Certainly there are things to learn about dogs before you bring one home. 

To facilitate this learning, Veterinary Behaviorists, the Board Certified members of the American College of Veterinary Behaviorists, have compiled a book for everyone who has, or plans to have, a dog. Whether you've had dogs all of your life or are about to acquire your first dog, there is something here for everyone, written by veterinary specialists in the field.

Mahalo and his Parrot friend, Gala, kissing. Photo courtesy
Loren Jensen-Carter

Editors Debra Horowitz, DVM DACVB and John Ciribassi, DVM DACVB and Steve Dale have compiled an easy-to-read volume of information and step-by-step ways to help you and your dog get through behavior problems such as separation anxiety, house training and much, much more in 14 chapters that you will read and read again.

Positive training plays a big part in this book. There is research to back up their information. 

It is appalling to think that more dogs die of behavior problems because they are relinquished to shelters, than any single disease. Go ahead, read that sentence again.  It's important. It's far better to work out the issues in a positive manner and build the human-animal bond rather than break it.

Karma in the Snow
Photo Courtesy: Veronique Schejtman

This book should be on every dog owner, or potential dog owner's shelf. 

Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt in January 2014, it is 384 pages filled with information you and your dog need.  It is reasonably priced in your choice of Hardcover, Paperback or e-book. Personally, I prefer to have a "real" book edition of a reference book so I can hold it in my hands and flip through the page or use the index to find what I need long after I've read it from cover-to-cover

If you can't wait another minute to read it, here's a link to the book on Amazon:

NOTE:  I received only a review copy of this book. I have NOT been monetarily compensated. The review is my own based upon reading the book.

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Random Acts of Kindness Day!

Did you know that today was Random Acts of Kindness Day?  Frankly, I didn't! However, it's not too late to participate in the Random Act of Kindness of your choice.  Here's one that should appeal to many of you.

MARS Petcare SHEBA brand decided to show their kindness to cats in shelters across the country who are waiting for their forever homes.  To that end, SHEBA brand donated - wait for it - TWO MILLION CANS OF CAT FOOD to animal shelters across the nation. How cool is that!

Sheba Brand is encouraging cat lovers to join them by sharing the video below -  or just share this post  -  with the hashtags #ShebaGives and #RAK and Sheba will donate an additional can of cat food to shelter cats - up to 1 million additional cans!  

Here's the video. Now do your part!

NOTE: I received no compensation for posting this. It was completely my decision to help this campaign.

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Homes for Dogs Project

Max, the Adopted Dog

Every pet deserves a warm, loving home. Unfortunately, not everyone has one. They often languish in shelters where they are killed (euthanized) if no one adopts them, or in rescue, waiting for that "forever home."

Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC ( is aiming to find homes for 20,000 dogs this year. Yes, you read that correctly. This ambitious campaign will seek to match dogs with loving families. For those of us who believe that a house is not a home without a four-legged family member, this is a great idea. I'm sure the homeless dogs would agree.

Their 30-second ad spot which is premiering during the 87th Academy Awards, shows a real success story. Max was seen on and adopted. Coldwell Banker hopes to 20,000 more dogs will find their forever homes as a result of this campaign.

"Our previous spots have showcased the joy of coming home, so this year it made sense to portray who's on the other side of the door," said Sean Blankenship, chief marketing officer for Coldwell Banker Real Estate LLC

Coldwell Banker® is simultaneously announcing their first ever "Homes for Dogs Project" by teaming up with, the largest non-profit pet adoption website in North America, the campaign aims to find homes for 20,000 dogs in North America.

I have an advanced "peek" at the commercial for you that opens with an originally produced country song.  Enjoy you early-bird look at the commercial created by Siltanen & Partners. (

Meet the Dogs of the Homes for Dogs Commercial!

I hope you'll enjoy this sneak preview as much as I have! I hope the right people will open their hearts and homes to the right dogs - and cats!  Yes, that's a hint!  I hope they will do a campaign for cats before too long!  Thanks, Coldwell Banker!!

Meanwhile, if you're interested in giving a forever home to a dog, follow this link:

Monday, February 9, 2015

9 Reasons Why Your Dog Should Be Your Valentine

Photo Courtesy of Veronique Schejtman

When it comes to Valentine's, I've yet to find a human who could match dogs and cats when it comes to real love. Those of you who know me, or have been reading this blog for awhile, know that I adore dogs and cats, puppies and kittens. They have made my life so much richer. There is nothing like the Human-Animal Bond. There's a good reason why I was invited to be one of the first layperson members of The American Association of Human-Animal Bond Veterinarians.

Photo Courtesy of Loren Jensen Carter

Usually, my blog is filled with helpful information for dog and cat owners, occasional reviews, and once in a very great while, something that's just plain fun.

With Valentine's Day a few days away, the nice people at HooplaHa ( have shared this compilation video. I don't know if there is also one for cat owners. Heaven knows, those of us who are owned by cats know all about the love, laughter and happiness they bring into our lives every single day.

Photo Courtesy of Claire Clayton

In celebration of Valentine's Day and the Human-Animal Bond, here's HooplaHa's video compilation of 9 Reasons Why Your Dog Should Be Your Valentine.  We can't give our four-legged companions chocolate but we can give them our love, attention and time.