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.

Help Rachael Ray™ Nutrish® donate $250,000 to benefit shelter pets! You could win a year of Nutrish for your Pets!

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

A SWEEPSTAKES FOR YOU AND YOUR PETS TOO!!

  • Grand Prize$25,000 and a one-year supply of Nutrish® dry dog food or one year worth of Nutrish® dry cat.
  • THREE (3) First Prizes: $5,000 and a one-year supply of Nutrish® dry dog food or one year worth of Nutrish® dry cat.

Many of you know that I am not a Shelter dog. I was not adopted. That doesn’t mean that I don’t want to help EVERY SINGLE ANIMAL who is in a Shelter find a furever home. My kitty brother, Cody, was adopted. My “bonus” human “sister” manages a local animal shelter here in Michigan and she has adopted many of the animals she has helped care for.

I have been eating Nutrish since 2008, and I have been an Ambassadog for Nutrish for approximately four years. Mom and I are EXTREMELY proud to represent a company, that not only has delicious food that is good for me, but we are proud to represent a company where the owner, (Rachael Ray), not only “talks the talk”, she “walks the walk” when it comes to her dedication to helping animals.

For those who are regular readers of my blog you know that Rachael Ray created:Rachael’s Rescue® which was created 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.

Because there are so many more animals who need help, Rachael Ray has created a new campaign that will run throughout the month of October.

The Rachael Ray™ Nutrish® Furever Home™  Campaign is Helping Shelter Pets Find The Home They Deserve!

Rachael Ray Nutrish is donating $250,000 during the month of October to help shelter pets in need!!

Cash donation will be made in equal amounts to 3 organizations:

  1. Big Dog Ranch Rescue :Big Dog Ranch Rescue is the largest no-kill dog rescue in the Southeastern United States.
  2. ASPCA: American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®(American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®: We have featured the ASPCA numerous times on Dakota’s blog and are honored and happy to do so. The ASPCA is a national leader in the areas of rescue, adoption and welfare and has worked tirelessly for over 150 years to put an end to animal abuse and neglect.
  3. North Shore Animal League:  North Shore Animal League is the world’s largest no-kill animal rescue and adoption organization.
    • SWEEPSTAKES!!!!

    • The Sweepstakes begins on October 1, 2017 at 12:00:00 a.m. Eastern Time (“ET”) and ends on October 31, 2017 at 11:59:59 p.m. ET (the “Sweepstakes Period”).
    • To Enter Online: Purchase any Nutrish®-only product during the Sweepstakes Period, then visit www.nutrishfureverhome.com and follow the on-screen instructions to complete the registration form with your contact information, including email address. Then upload a digital photo of your original purchase receipt with the Nutrish product circled, to receive one entry into the Sweepstakes.
    1.                                                       To Enter without Purchase. Open to legal residents of 50 U.S/D.C.,18+ (19+ in AL&NE). Ends 10/31/17 at 11:59:59 p.m. ET. To enter without purchase by mail and for Official Rules: www.nutrishfureverhome.com

      1. Grand Prize: $25,000 and a one-year supply of Nutrish® dry dog food or one year worth of Nutrish® dry cat.
      2. THREE (3) First Prizes: $5,000 and a one-year supply of Nutrish® dry dog food or one year worth of Nutrish® dry cat.

      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.

      I LOVE MY NUTRISH and you will too! So what are you waiting for? Hurry out and buy some today and HELP SHELTER PETS and maybe you will win some Nutrish for YOU!! Barks and licks and love, Dakota

Rachael Ray™ Nutrish® PEAK Give-Away Winners!

Thanks to all who entered our give-away! We are so excited to announce the FIVE lucky winners! We are so happy for all of you!  Huge congratulations to all!!!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

 

 

 

Born to be Backyard Wild! Rachael Ray™ Nutrish® PEAK (Give-Away!)

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

 

“Get your motor runnin’ Head out on the highway
Lookin’ for adventure
And whatever comes our way…….”

 

“Like a true nature’s child
We were born, born to be wild…….”

“Get your motor runnin……'”

(lyrics from Born To Be Wild–Steppenwolf)

Well hi my furiends, it’s Dakota!! You caught me while I was rolling in the grass in ecstasy, barking out one of my favorite songs! Why? Wait til you see. Gather ’round woofies and let me clue you in on something super special! You know  I often pout about that my pawrents don’t own a traditional house with a yard. We have a condo in an apartment building so our “backyard” is a shared courtyard. I would often be sad that other woofies have private yards and mine is no fun, but that isn’t the case! You can have fun anywhere, even right in your own backyard, no matter what that yard is!

How did I discover this? Well, you know my furiends at Nutrish have my back, right? They are always looking out for ME and all you woofies, wanting to bring us food that they know we haven an “instinctual craving” for. So, guess what they created?

 

That’s right! They created Rachael Ray™ Nutrish® PEAK Open Range Recipe™ with Beef, Venison & Lamb and Rachael Ray™ Nutrish® PEAK Northern Woodlands Recipe™ with Turkey, Duck & Quail!!!

Don’t those flavors sound wild and exotic? That’s what I thought too! While I am “sheltie-smile-happy” with ALL of the Nutrish food recipes, let me tell ya my furiends, PEAK is something to get super excited and “SHELTIE-SPIN “WILD” about!

I couldn’t wait for my Mom to let me try it! Mom and Dad gathered some fun stuff that my pals at Nutrish sent to me and we headed outside, the most exciting part was the FOOD came with me! “FOOD OUTSIDE?” I had never eaten “al fresco”  and I was beyond excited!

I couldn’t wait to dig in! The recipe that I tried was the Rachael Ray™ Nutrish® PEAK Open Range Recipe™ with Beef, Venison & Lamb. (I will be trying the  Rachael Ray™ Nutrish® PEAK Northern Woodlands Recipe™ with Turkey, Duck & Quail soon!!)

Both the Rachael Ray™ Nutrish® PEAK Open Range Recipe™ with Beef, Venison & Lamb and Rachael Ray™ Nutrish® PEAK Northern Woodlands Recipe™ with Turkey, Duck & Quail are a natural food for dogs with added vitamins & chelated minerals. These are nutrient-dense recipes which satisfy your dog’s instinctual cravings! They both are:

  • Protein-rich, grain-free recipes to satisfy your dog’s cravings
  • Real U.S. farm-raised beef is always the #1 ingredient (Open Range Recipe)/ Real U.S. farm-raised turkey is always the #1 ingredient (Northern Woodlands Recipe).
  • 30% high-quality protein
  • 0% grains, glutens or fillers.
  • Natural food for dogs with added vitamins & chelated minerals.
  • Protein-rich recipes made with nutrient-dense duck & quail or lamb & venison.
  • No poultry by-product meal, artificial flavors, colors, or artificial preservatives.
  • Safely USA cooked with the world’s best ingredients. (Venison & Lamb from New Zealand, Duck from the U.S., Quail from the U.S. and France.)
  • Made for dogs of all sizes.

They are available right where you shop for your family’s groceries!

As you often hear me bark about, and what we are SUPER PROUD OF, is 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.  Rachael’s Rescue® was created for all of the forgotten pets – the ones who might not have someone who loves them as much as they deserve.  Through December 2016, Rachael’s Rescue has donated more than $17.5 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.

Now…check this out! After eating my incredibly “delish” meal, my Mom got out the new toy that Nutrish sent to me:

Boy did I ever have fun!!

WOOFIES!! Did you know that if you follow Nutrish on Instagram @nutrish and share a pic of your pup  with #NutrishBackyardWild & #sweepstakes you will be entered for a chance to win prizes from PEAK as well as a GoPro® HERO Session™? Yep, that’s true but the contest is ending soon so you had better hurry!!!  Read the Official rules: http://bit.ly/2qDmVUs

AND WE HAVE A GIVE-AWAY TOO!!!!! That’s right woofies!!! FIVE OF YOUR HUMANS  WHO ARE 18 AND OVER, WHO PAW IN YOUR ENTRY FOR YOU AND WHO RESIDE IN THE U.S., CAN WIN ONE COUPON TO TRY Rachael Ray™ Nutrish® PEAK !!! Now, when you enter, read CAREFULLY…there are TWO mandatory requirements on the Rafflecopter. Unfortunately, if you do not complete both, you will be disqualified.

Now woofies

“Like a true nature’s child
We were born, born to be wild…….”

“Get your motor runnin……'”

AND ENTER!!!

GOOD LUCK!!! 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

#Ad It’s a Rachael Ray™ Nutrish® Dog Treat Party and Give-Away! #NutrishPets

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

Hi my furiends!! It’s Dakota! Today I can BARELY contain myself!!!! Shelties spin when they are excited, and let me tell ya, I am sooooo excited that I am spinning like a top!!!!

The other day I was moping around because I didn’t feel that Mom and Dad made a big enough fuss about my TENTH birthday. I am a sensitive sort, and I felt there should have been much more fanfare. Suddenly, I heard a THUD outside of our door!! Sure enough, as if they could read my mind, my treasured friends at Nutrish came through YET AGAIN!!!  There was a GIANT BOX OUTSIDE MY DOOR AND IT WAS FOR ME!!!

I couldn’t wait to get my paws on it! As you can see by the photo above, it was LOADED with all sorts of things! There were even things in  the box for Mom and Dad! But the MAIN THING that I wanted….WAIT FOR IT WOOFIES….which has been a LONG time coming,  were the NEW Rachael Ray™ Nutrish® treats!!!  Let me tell ya my furiends, these aren’t just any ‘ol run of the mill dog treats either. Nope! These treats are in flavors that doggies DREAM about!!! But, you will have to put your tongues back in your mouths for just one second, because before I tell you about the DELICIOUS NEW Rachael Ray™ Nutrish® treats, I want to show you just some of the goodies that were in that Party box!

(This is just a sampling of what was in that amazing box! Mom was a piggie and ate the can of peanuts that was there, she also received some really cool lenses that are supposed to fit on her iPhone but Mom couldn’t get them to stay on).  Of course the MOST IMPAWTANT part, was that there were FIVE, COUNT ‘EM, FIVE BAGS OF NEW Rachael Ray™ Nutrish® treats FOR ME!

There was a note in the box saying to invite some woofies over for a pawty, but anyone that knows me knows that I run a TIGHT security operation here and there is NO WAY other woofies are GOING TO SET ONE PAW into MY territory and eat MY BRAND NEW TREATS! NO WAY!!!! Thanks to my cherished friends at Nutrish, I  would FINALLY get to celebrate my tenth birthday the way it SHOULD have been celebrated!

 

My furiends did you catch the names of the new treats? No, well here ya go, they are:

Burger Bites

Pawsta

Deli Cuts

Meatloaf Morsels

Savory Roasters

Inspired by real recipes from Rachael’s kitchen, these delicious treats start with real meat combined with lots of other good stuff for a tail-waggin’ treat experience like no other.

“Real meat brings the YUM!”

The new Rachael Ray™ Nutrish® treats are made with simple, wholesome ingredients. Dogs everywhere crave the meaty deliciousness in these Nutrish treats. Dogs love smoky pepperoni, burgers, chicken and even meatloaf!! Look for them where you shop for your family’s groceries.

  • Real U.S. farm-raised beef or chicken is always the #1 ingredient.
  • No artificial flavors or meat by-products.
  • No corn or wheat.
  • Dogs everywhere crave the meaty deliciousness in these Nutrish treats.
  • Safely USA cooked with the world’s best ingredients.
  • Rachael Ray™ Nutrish® Treats are intended for intermittent or supplemental feeding only. Please watch your dog to ensure Nutrish treats are thoroughly chewed before swallowing. Break into small pieces for smaller dogs.

 

For those of you who are on Facebook, you got a little tease with THIS photo Saturday night. If you read the last bullet point above, Mom DID break a few of my treats into smaller pieces….but….

she was taking SO LONG to give them to me that I jumped up, hit that plate with my paw and the entire thing fell onto the carpet! Treats were EVERYWHERE! It was a treat free-for-all, well a treat FREE-FOR-ME!!!!! It was EPIC!!

 

Now, let me tell you how my pawty went!! Mom, Dad and I decided to have MY pawty Saturday night. My friends at Nutrish sent Mom some recipes, a super cute wooden recipe box to keep them in, and a MUCH NEEDED plastic cover so that Mom won’t spill all sorts of things on her recipes while she cooks.  The recipe below was one that Nutrish sent to Mom, but she changed it up a bit,

(Mom and Dad aren’t big fans of eggplant, so Mom left that out, and she used balsamic vinegar instead of wine, as well as  crushed tomatoes that she had on hand. Mom also added carrots, broccoli and cauliflower to hers to make up for the eggplant). Here is Mom’s (and it is served in one of Rachael Ray’s serving pieces that Mom bought last year)

 

Mom and Dad said it was AMAZING! Mom tripled the recipe because she is a pig,  so she could freeze some.

NOW CHECK THIS OUT!

MY PLATE IS ON THE LEFT

MOM AND DAD’S PLATE

IS ON THE RIGHT

It was fun because while Mom and Dad got to eat THEIR pasta with ground meat, and some dry salami, (Mom said it was sooo hot and spicy and SOO delicious!!)  I got to eat Rachael Ray™ Nutrish® treats! I got to try MY Burger treats, my Deli treats and my PAWSTA treats!!

My treats look EVEN BETTER than the HUMAN food, don’t you agree? (Mom said that the entire time she was giving me my treats to taste, they looked SO GOOD, and SMELLED so good that SHE wanted to eat them!!! BOL!!) Mom said that Rachael Ray’s love of food and talent with food, as well as her knowledge about food, and her love of pets, are evident in each and every one of these treats. Mom thinks they are the MOST CLEVER TREATS EVER and quite easily the BEST she has ever seen! I could NOT AGREE MORE!! Mom said that these treats are so special that she wanted to present MY treats to me in a SPECIAL way so she served the human food and my treats on these wonderful plates that Nutrish sent.

The dishes are microwave and dishwasher safe and on the back of each plate is a drink recipe created by Rachael’s husband, John who is known for coming up with super cool drink recipes! Mom was going to show a recipe from the back of one of the plates, but figured, hey, if you want the recipe, go and buy the plates!! BOL! BOL! BOL!!!

This was the BEST pawty EVER! But even when you have a PAWTASTIC pawty like I had, you know, there HAS to be an after pawty, right? Well, of course! There were still TWO bags of treats that I hadn’t tried so Mom brought those out. It was time to PAWTY DOWN AGAIN!!!

The treats I had at my after pawty were the Meatloaf Morsels and the Savory Roasters. OH MY FURIENDS they are THE BEST EVER!! 

Now, my special friends at Nutrish know that I am one SMART Sheltie, so they also included a “brain game” for me to try to figure out. Mom broke up the treats that  were in her hand, (as you can see in the above photo),  and put them in my game.  Here is a video of me figuring the game out.

Mom said it took me longer to figure out the game than she thought it would. I say “Pfffft!!” to that!

I say all that matters is that I got to taste EVERY SINGLE BAG OF THOSE DELICIOUS TREATS!!!! GUESS WHAT MY FURIENDS!! YOU CAN HAVE A CHANCE TO TASTE THEM TOO!!!! (If you are in the U.S. and 18 or over). My furiends at Nutrish are allowing me to give away A COUPON FOR THE NEW Rachael Ray™ Nutrish® treats, ONE PER EACH LUCKY WINNER! THERE WILL BE FIVE WINNERS!!! (Only if you follow the directions on the Rafflecopter below!)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

Don’t forget my furiends that when you purchase items from Nutrish,  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.

Rachael’s Rescue® was created for all of the forgotten pets – the ones who might not have someone who loves them as much as they deserve. Through December 2016, Rachael’s Rescue has donated more than $17.5 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.

Follow Nutrish ! 

Thank you Rachael Ray™ Nutrish® for making these PAWTASTIC TREATS!!  They were the BEST part of my tenth birthday! Barks and licks and love, Dakota

#Sponsored A Dog’s 17 Wishes for a Happy New Year 2017 #NutrishPets

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

Well my furiends,  it’s Dakota and I am here hoping that you had a wonderful holiday! My Menorah still has a few more nights to go, but since I am a sensitive sort of Sheltie, I am already thinking about the New Year which is right around the corner. I decided to put my Sheltie brain to good use and share with you SEVENTEEN things that I am wishing for in the year 2017!

  • I wish I could finally chase the mail carrier away!
  • I wish I could also make the vacuum go away. I don’t appreciate how it taunts me!
  • I wish that Mom and Dad would play with me more. I know they are busy, but I am getting older now and they need to play with me much more than they do!
  • I wish I could have Nutrish more than just twice a day
  • I wish that all pet parents would take their animals to the Vet regularly, don’t wait til they get sick! 
  • I wish that Mom would brush my teeth more often. I do get a cleaning once a year, but I don’t mind having my teeth brushed one bit and I think that Mom should appreciate that and brush my teeth!
  • I wish my Sheltie girlfriend, Eva, would start blogging again. I miss her.
  • I wish that all animals would find a furever home.
  • I wish that Mom wouldn’t take blogging trips. I know she has two that she is going to be taking, I hope that there aren’t too many more!
  • I wish for Peace in the World
  • I wish that people would stop making me and my parents feel bad because I am not a rescue dog.
  • I wish that no more of my friends would go to the Rainbow Bridge.
  • I wish that I could do more to help the animals.
  • I wish that I could have more adventures in 2017. Many blogging dogs do exciting things! I guess maybe I should start to let Mom and Dad take me for more walks (I don’t love taking walks)
  • I wish that I stay healthy
  • I wish Mom and Dad would stay healthy
  • I wish that all of you would make the switch to Nutrish!!! By making the switch:

A portion of Nutrish proceeds go to Rachael’s Rescue®, which was created to help animals in need. To date, over $14MM has been donated. This money has gone toward food, medical supplies and treatments for these unfortunate animals.

Did You Know?

All of the Rachael Ray Nutrish products are available where you shop for your family’s groceries, making specialty recipes accessible and convenient for every pet parent. 

 

Follow Nutrish ! 

From my family,
from my Nutrish “family”
to YOUR FAMILY
we wish you a happy, safe and blessed 
NEW YEAR!!!!!
Barks and licks and love, Dakota