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.

Happy Thanksgiving Friends!!

we are thankful for our blessings,

Today, and every day,

we are thankful for YOU!

From our house to yours,

Happy Thanksgiving!!

Barks and licks and love!

#Sponsored Giving Thanks for my Silly, Stubborn Dog #NutrishPets

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

 

It’s the night before Thanksgiving, and here I sit with the smell of cranberries cooking on the stove for the upcoming Thursday feast. The TV is on with no one watching. To my left is Dakota’s favorite red, white and blue ball that is  just waiting for someone to trip over it. Dakota and Cody are asleep in the vicinity. Our condo feels warm and cozy. Perfect.

dakota-thanksgiving-nutrish-cranberries

It is hard to believe that in just a few weeks we will be saying goodbye to 2016. I have to admit, this is one year I am happy to kick to the curb. It hasn’t been kind on many fronts, but through all the challenges that were faced head-on, my pets are always there to make me laugh and give me the greatest gift they ever could, their unconditional love.

Today’s post was supposed to be entirely different from what it turned out to be. I was going to put a Turkey hat on Dakota, and take some cute photos and make it all “Thanksgivingy”, but Dakota made it clear that he wanted NO PART OF IT!  No amount of cajoling, treat bartering, or cutesy voices  would have him obey, he made it clear that he had enough of me chasing him around wanting to take photos.

dakota-thanksgiving-nutrish-looking

 

dakota-thanksgiving-nutrish-singing

My knee-jerk reaction was to be upset, my first thought was “what the heck am I going to write about now?”, but after looking at the photos and thinking, it dawned on me. How often do we forget that our pets have minds of their own? Some would disagree, but I believe our pets think and  have feelings, they are entitled to not want to always do what WE say they have to do, and if it is something that isn’t going to hurt them, then I say go with the flow.

 

dakota-thanksgiving-nutrish-guarding

Dakota practicing “selective hearing”
in the photo above. No way was he going to listen!

Dakota didn’t sign up to be on a blog, I enlisted him without his consent!  If I don’t have the photos that I need, that’s my problem, not his.

dakota-thanksgiving-nutrish-handsome

So, since “life is what happens to you while you are busy making other plans”, I re-grouped. There are  no silly turkey hats in this post. There is  just me, sharing photos of my sometimes stubborn dog, and often crazy cat, who make me laugh on a daily basis, multiple times per day, even when I don’t want to.

dakota-thanksgiving-nutrish-playing-with-cody

When Dakota and Cody both entered my life in 2007  I had no blogs. I didn’t look at them thinking of photo ops, or for what they needed to “do” to make me happy for my blogs, I loved them for THEM. I wanted them in my life because I love animals. Pets enrich the lives of their owners on every level. I wanted to give them love. I wanted them to be safe. They spend every day of their lives asking for nothing from me but to LOVE and  protect them. Dakota’s resistance to wanting his photo taken reminded me that he doesn’t need to pose or cooperate for a photo for me to love him. I love him because he is a wonderfully sensitive, fun, brilliant and silly dog. I love him because he “IS.”

Dakota, Cody and I are some of the lucky ones. My pets have a roof over their heads, a warm home. They have more than enough toys, tons of love from their Dad and me, they eat the most delicious food. Not all animals are as lucky.

When I began feeding Dakota Nutrish back in 2008, it was a no-brainer. I already was a fan of Rachael’s from TV, but my decision to feed them Nutrish was partly based on the fact that she has mad cooking ability, but more importantly, I trust Rachael Ray implicitly because I know how much she  loves animals.  Rachael’s pet food was created with the same love that she brings to her human food.  She brings that same love to a cause dear to her heart, Rachael’s Rescue.

Rachael's Rescue logo - new

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.

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 ! 

 Sometimes we all need a kick in the butt to see what is truly important. Whether or not Dakota cooperated for a photo shoot isn’t important at all. What IS important is that I love he (and Cody), for the amazing pets that they are, for the love and laughter they bring me EVERY DAY. 
dakota-thanksgiving-nutrish-sleeping-with-cody
Today,  I give THANKS for Dakota and Cody, the 4-legged loves of my life!! I also give ENORMOUS thanks to ALL OF YOU, and ALL OF YOUR FUR BABIES who bring joy to ME every day. Last, but far from least, I give thanks to Rachael Ray, Rachael’s Rescue, and every one at the forefront and behind the scenes at Nutrish. THANK YOU for caring about all of our pets, EVERY WHERE!!! THANK YOU for all that you do!

Turkey Talk and Gratitude:Thanksgiving

thanksgiving 2015 collage

 

Today, and every day,

we are thankful for our blessings,

Today, and every day,

we are thankful for YOU!

From our house to yours,

Happy Thanksgiving!!

With Love!

From Us to YOU! Happy Thanksgiving!

It’s #Thanksgivukkah!!!!

It is a once in a lifetime event that the American Thanksgiving and the Jewish holiday of Chanukah are falling on the same day, hence the name Thanksgivukkah!!!

dakota thanksgivukkah

Dakota and I want each and every one of you to know just HOW SPECIAL you are  to us, and we are THANKFUL for your friendship and support not just ONE day of the year, but EVERY DAY!!

It is our pleasure to share with you a most beautiful video that was lovingly made by the marvelous “Shell”, over at her blog,  My Three Moggiescommemorating both Thanksgiving and Chanukah, aka Thanksgivukkah!!!!,    She painstakingly put in all of the photos that each of us submitted to her and we are grateful for that and the zillion other things that she helps with throughout the blogging community. “Shell” and each and every one of YOU are shining examples of why we LOVE PET BLOGGERS!!!

May your holiday season be full of abundant blessings!!!


Barks, licks and much love and gratitude,

Dakota  and Caren