3 Reasons Why I Am Thankful For My Dog (Secrets You Never Knew)

Rachael Ray Nutrish has sponsored this post, but all opinions are my own.

One of my favorite holidays is right around the corner, Thanksgiving. It is a favorite of mine for a number of reasons, yes, the food is decadent and scrumptious,  but I love Thanksgiving for another huge reason as well, it enables me to stop, take a deep breath from the trials and pressures of life in my daily world, as well as the world around us, and take stock of what I am thankful for. This is something I should be doing every day, but like many others, I do not do it enough.

Some of the things I am thankful for are my husband, my family, friends,  a roof over our heads, food on our table and the pets by my side.

This year in particular I am especially thankful for Dakota. This self-professed “cat person” and this incredibly sensitive and loving dog have become obsessed with each other. I am sure this didn’t happen overnight, Dakota is now ten years old, it has been ten years in the making.

Dakota is the first dog I have had as an adult. When I was a child we had a dog, but I had never had one on my own until Dakota.  When Dakota first joined our family, I was clueless. I had cats for approximately 20 years and knew nothing about caring for a dog. Dakota not only helped me learn about dogs in general, but with his unconditional love and devotion, he enabled ME to learn about HIM.

1. Dakota Expanded My Horizons: Having been immersed in the world of cats for so many years, I am thankful that having Dakota enabled me to meet some of the most knowledgeable dog bloggers in the world. Some of them I have been blessed to meet in person, others I am close to via email and their blogs. Many have become like family to me and they have enriched my life more than they could know.

2. Dakota enabled me to be a Brand Ambassador for a Company that I am honored to represent: I am thankful that Dakota enabled  me to take my years of loving all things Rachael Ray, (long before I ever had a blog), to an entirely different level. When I first bought Nutrish  in 2008, Dakota didn’t have a blog, (his blog began in 2011, a thank you to Yvonne DiVita at BlogPaws who strongly suggested that Dakota have his own blog, even if I was kicking and screaming that I did not want Dakota to have a blog, because I already had a cat blog, and how would I ever manage TWO blogs?)

  I never dreamed that Dakota’s blog  would lead he  and I to be Brand Ambassadors for Rachael Ray Nutrish. It is an honor that I cherish and I am  proud to have been a part of for nearly 5 years. I am thankful  for this relationship on so many levels. It is a complete delight to work with the people I am involved with at Nutrish,  and it delights me because Dakota truly eats Nutrish (and has since 2008).  Authenticity is important to me, and it is a HUGE component of our blog. I am also grateful to be an Ambassador for Rachael Ray Nutrish because Rachael as a person, and the brand as a whole,  truly cares about animals and gives back.

Rachael Ray created:Rachael’s Rescue® which came about to care for all of the forgotten pets – the ones who might not have someone who loves them as much as they deserve. A portion of proceeds from each sale of Nutrish is donated to The Rachael Ray Foundation, which helps animals in need through Rachael’s Rescue. Through September 2017, Rachael’s Rescue has donated more than $21 million dollars to pet charities and other organizations that do good for animals. The funds are used for food,medical supplies, treatments, and more for animals in need. Many more animals around the country need help, and through Rachael’s Rescue, together we can make a difference in the lives of many four-legged friends.

 

 3. Dakota has taught me to be a “little” more patient: I am thankful that Dakota taught me that yes, “patience IS a virtue.” I am NOT known for being patient. Living with and loving Dakota has taught me that things aren’t necessarily going to happen when I want them to. Housebreaking a dog,  teaching commands, learning how to interact with each other, it all takes TIME and PATIENCE.  There are many “how to train a dog” books that have been written, I have read a ton of them, but an important point that must be taken into consideration is, what is “tried and true” for some, might not be “tried and true” for all. Each dog, just like each human who lives with a dog is an individual.  What motivates one, may not motivate another.

I try to make sure I remember that Dakota isn’t a “cookie-cutter” dog. Taking the time to learn about MY dog and only MY dog is one of many lessons that Dakota has taught me that I am thankful for.  While Dakota appreciates that I have become more patient there is still one thing he wishes that HE could be thankful for…….what is it? That when it comes to taking photos, that I would just disappear!

There you have it, those were my 3 Reasons Why I Am Thankful For My Dog  (yes I have a TON more but you have better things to do than to read about a ZILLION reasons why I am thankful for my dog).

Now it’s YOUR turn, what are YOU thankful for? What has your dog taught you? Has your dog “Made the switch to Nutrish?” Leave us a comment below and tell us, we would LOVE to hear!

About Rachael Ray Nutrish: In 2007, with help from pet nutrition experts, Rachael Ray created Nutrish super-premium food and treats for dogs inspired by recipes from her own kitchen. In 2014, we were very excited to grow the brand into the world of cat food. Whether intended for dogs or cats, Nutrish recipes are made with simple, wholesome ingredients like real meat or fish, and do not contain poultry by-product meal or fillers.

Dog Book Winners! ”Too Licky” (Two Sisters’ Journey to Rescue the “Just-Right” Dog) by Gigi Giles & Ryan Giles

Thank you to all who entered our give-away for:

Photo Courtesy of “Too Licky” Click to visit their website!

 

THE LUCKY WINNERS ARE:

CHERRI MEGASKO

DEBBIE

I will be emailing you soon!!!

CONGRATULATIONS!

Unique Nonprofit Shares the Healing Power of the Paw by Shannon Kopp

With Adopt a Shelter Dog Month just underway, a unique nonprofit organization, SoulPaws Recovery Project, was thrilled to share it’s message about the healing power of the paw in PEOPLE Magazine! 

Logo Courtesy of Shannon Kopp

 
SoulPaws utilizes rescue dogs and therapy animals (dogs, puppies, miniature horses, guinea pigs, rabbits, rats, and more) to help women overcome food and body issues. The nonprofit provides free online and in-person animal-assisted therapy workshops—designed to combat the shame and secrecy so inherent in eating disorders. Live workshops are held monthly by trained facilitators, who are licensed therapists, social workers, or marriage and family therapist interns. Journaling, meditation, sharing on recovery oriented topics, and one-on-one time with the animals are a part of each workshop experience.

 
Studies show that time spent with animals not only improves our physical health, but our mental and emotional well-being. “The lack of judgment, lack of expectations, nonverbal interaction, sensory engagement through touch, evident behavior of the animal, and restorative/fun experience are elements that have made the human-animal interaction qualitatively different from human interactions,” says SoulPaws Executive Board Member, Dr. Patricia Flaherty Fischette, Ph.D.

soulpaws participant and therapy dog. Photo Courtesy of Shannon Kopp

 
SoulPaws Founder, Shannon Kopp, shared with PEOPLE: “Eating disorders are often described as a disease of disconnection. The goal of SoulPaws is to not only help the participants connect with animals and each other, but to experience freedom from their eating disorder and a reunion with their true, authentic selves.”
 
In late November, SoulPaws will be teaming up with Recovery Warriors to offer their biggest online animal-assisted therapy workshop yet at the FoodBodyLove Rally.
 
To learn more about SoulPaws, visit www.soulpawsrecovery.org.

Soulpaws therapy dog photo courtesy of Shannon Kopp

 
About SoulPaws: SoulPaws, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, offers unique and evidence-based animal-assisted therapy experiences designed for people impacted by mental health issues. With every workshop, SoulPaws aims to decrease shame, increase compassion, and inspire courage. Offered in-person and online, our workshops are led by SoulPaws trained facilitators. SoulPaws utilizes a variety of therapy animals, including dogs, miniature horses, guinea pigs, rabbits, rats, and more. In simply being themselves, SoulPaws therapy animals serve as guides to compassion, mindfulness, and emotional vulnerability.
 

Happy Halloween!!!

Pet Product: Molly Mutt Car Seat Cover

Hi everyone it’s Dakota! Back in September Mom and I were reading a blog that we follow regularly (My Rotten Dogs) and they were having a give-away for a Molly Mutt Car Seat Cover. 

My Dad had just leased a new Honda Accord and was already getting frantic about having me ride in it too soon. Why? Because Shelties are known to have an abundance of fur and said-fur gets all over Dad’s back seat. Mom and I were quite familiar with Molly Mutt because we had won a bed some time ago,  and we both decided that since their products are so well made, we wanted to enter this give-away and hopefully surprise my OCD Dad by winning the Car Seat Cover.

Well, I won and I am doing Sheltie Spins of joy that I did!

The Molly Mutt Car Seat Covers are super versatile and stylish! They can be used as traditional car seat covers, cargo covers or a hammock cover. Before I show you my photos (because of course I never use ANY product in a traditional way), I want to show you a photo from the Molly Mutt website that shows the cover being used three different ways. You will notice in the photo below that the cover is put in the car in a neat and tidy manner, (not like the way that my Mom put ours in for our Dad!)

Photo Courtesy of the Molly Mutt Website. Click to visit and purchase

The Molly Mutt car seat cover not only protects your back seat or cargo area, it also adds an extra bit of style.

  • fits all vehicles with headrests
  • covers the back seat or cargo area
  • adjustable straps for easy on/off
  • seat belt slots so you can buckle up
  • seat anchors & non-skid backing keep the cover in place

dimensions: 56″ x 56″

you can also add embroidery!

When I won, Mom and I selected the same cover that is featured in the photo above. It is called “Rocketman” (and you are welcome for the earworm I just gave you with Elton John buzzing in your head!)  When you see my photos below you will notice that Mom did NOT use the adjustable straps or the seat belt slots. Why? Because Dad’s wants/needs for the use of HIS cover is different from most. The reason for that is because I am only a 25 lb Sheltie, I am NOT a giant dog who takes up the entire back seat both in length OR height! Dad’s main concern for his car is that the seat that I plop my butt on (and that passengers in his car plop THEIR butt on), is covered, AND, because I tend to also like to sit ON THE FLOOR, Dad wanted part of the FLOOR covered as well. (That is because my fur sticks to the carpeting in the car like velcro!)

Leave it to us to ALWAYS add a new spin on ways to use products! It might not be the textbook “right” way but it WORKS for us and FULFILLS OUR NEEDS!

Now that we have a Molly Mutt Car Seat Cover my fur doesn’t shed on the seat or the floor which makes Dad happy and in turn makes Mom and I happy because we don’t have to listen to him yapping about not wanting to have me ride  in his new car! (The nerve of him!)

Thanks Molly Mutt and our furiends at My Rotten Dogs! The car seat cover functions the way that WE need it to function and we couldn’t be happier!

Woofies go and visit Molly Mutt and get one for yourself too!

Barks and licks and love, 

Dakota 

 

 

In full disclosure:we were not compensated for writing about the Molly Mutt Car Seat Cover. We chose to feature it on our blog as a thank you for having won it, which in our world is the proper thing to do when one wins a prize from a blog. That being said, we love our cover and if we had done a traditional review we would have featured more photos and more feedback from us, but this is a product “feature” NOT one of our traditional reviews.

Best & Worst Pets for Apartment Living

FTC Disclosure:ForRent.com has sponsored and provided the content for this post.

Over time, dogs are reportedly more stinky than cats by a 2 to 1 ratio. And yet, the age-old personality question persists: Are you a dog person or a cat person?

Beyond personality, we wanted to look at the many other considerations of pet ownership that are important for apartment living. How much space does your pet need? How much care and walking will it require? Is it stinky? How much does it poop?

We set out to find statistics and data to answer these questions so you can find the best pet to suit your apartment life. Here’s what we found:

Best & Worst Pets for Apartment Living
Best & Worst Pets for Apartment Living Created By: ForRent.com

 

Educating people on the best pets for smaller spaces will hopefully reduce the number of pets turned over to shelters because owners were not well informed.