It's finally warming up here and one way Phoenix loves to beat the heat is by swimming! She really enjoys fetching things out of the river and she could do this for hours. It's fun to watch her swim and she has a great time but sometimes she gets so into it that it's hard to tell when she's getting tired. Safety in the water is really important to me and we were really excited when one of our favoritge brands offered the perfect solution: Life Savior!
The Life Savior, is a new generation streamlined life jacket for dogs, made by Hurtta. This life jacket is ideal for swimming, water rescue, rehabilitation, boating and hunting. The special design of the floats make the jacket very light and ensure a comfortable fit. The light design of the jacket allows for freedom of movement for your dog in water and on land. I love how light weight the jacket is. Our swimming spot is a bit of a trek for us and the light weight design is very helpful. Phoenix can either wear the jacket as we're hiking or I can carry it. Even soaking wet, the jacket is light.
The buoyancy of this life jacket has been
thoroughly tested by the Finnish Institute of Occupational Health. The life jacket has an adjustable
belt and front that allow it to fit most breeds of dog. The back
of the jacket is fitted with sturdy handle by which the dog can be
guided in the water or lifted out. A protective underbelly section
distributes the dog's weight over a larger area and keeps the jacket
firmly in place. The reflective
fabric and 3M reflectors on the back of the jacket provide
visibility in the dark.
We had an awesome time testing this life jacket and I noticed a huge difference in Phoenix's confidence in the water. I could tell that the life jacket was helping to make her buoyant and swim more correctly (sometimes her back end sinks). I love the feeling of safety that this life jacket provided me with. Phoenix can now play as much as she wants in the water without me worrying that she might get too tired. I also really love sturdy the handle is on the back of the jacket, I was able to lift her completely out of the water with it. The Life Savior is a very sturdy life jacket and I can tell we will get a lot of use out of it!
If your dog spends a lot of time swimming or near the water, I would highly recommend checking out the Hurtta Life Savior! Life jackets save lives!
Does you dog like playing in the water?
Don't forget to check out Hurtta out onFacebook and like their page! They often look for product testers and run their own giveaways. The best way of finding out about allthe Hurtta news is by liking their page.
ZoePhee was provided with a Life Savior in exchange for an honest review. We were not monetarily compensated and all opinions are my own. Hurtta is not responsible for the content of this blog post.
Many pets are terrified of fireworks and other loud noises. These sorts
of noises are hard to predict and even harder to work on with training.
My dogs are usually over threshold immediately upon hearing the first bangs or
Fireworks can cause a great deal of stress in dogs. Some signs to look for would include:
Shaking or Trembling
Barking or Howling
Refusing to Eat Food
Pacing, unable to settle
Trying to hide or trying to get into or out of the house, fence or enclosure
Loosing control of their bladder, bowels or anal glands.
Things we can do to help our dogs get through the night:
Exercise your dog early and make sure to walk them before it gets dark.
I'm planning on running the girls several miles out at the big park in
the afternoon. Hopefully they will be tired and sleep through the festivities.
Keep your pets indoors! Many pets who are left outdoors during fireworks
end up panicking and getting lost. If you must go outside, keep your
dog on a leash attached to a harness. Harnesses are a lot harder to
escape from. Pets should also be wearing ID tags with your most current
Close your curtains or blinds. Turn on your TV, fan or radio to provide them with some background noise and distraction.
Some dogs find hiding in their crate to be comforting. My dogs love
their crates and I will often throw a blanket over their crates, too
which gives them an extra sense of security.
If your dog will take food, you can try to keep them busy with a food puzzle toy, like a stuffed kong.
Some dogs do just fine with the noises but other dogs, like mine, are
not easily calmed by petting or talking to them. They are just too upset
by the noise. Pets who are very frightened and who might hurt
themselves should never be left alone. If nothing seems to work for your
pet, you should consider speaking to your veterinarian about sedatives. We've had really good luck with trazadone but it's important to consult with a veterinarian to find out which drug might work best for your dog.
Happy Sunday everyone! We recently took Zoe and Phee on a weekend trip to the Oregon Coast! We visited three different beaches and toured Fort Stevens. The girls had a blast and as soon as I'm done editing the photos, I will share more of our trip with everyone!
Hi everyone! I hope you're all having a great day. Today I have an update on how Phoenix has been doing. As most of you know, we started Phoenix in play groups at my work back in the beginning of February to try and help her with some of her dog/dog issues. Along the way, we've had some struggles and we've learned so much about her. Phoenix also attends our reactive dog class whenever there is room for her and helps other dogs learn how to be calm around each other, so she's getting some additional counter conditioning on leash with other dogs in a controlled manner. Working my own dog in that class has been really helpful for me and has helped me improve my handling skills which is great for Phoenix and great for all the dog training classes that I help with.
The main thing that Phoenix struggles with is greeting new dogs. She is fearful and face-to-face
(----> <---) greetings are hard for her. Sometimes a face-to-face greeting can illicit a soft snarl and flash of teeth all the way up to an actual snark with light contact. I say light contact as she has never hurt anybody.
The other issue that we've seen is what we call "breed-specific (hereditary) chasing and nipping. This behavior is very interesting as it seems like something she has a very hard time controlling on her own. It's like some sort of compulsive action that she can't help doing. When she sees a dog moving, her first instinct is to chase them and nip at their butts.
We've also seen some low-level separation anxiety from me. As soon as I would leave the room, she would continually pace and try to figure out where I went or try to get back to me. Transitioning times between employees and dogs were pretty stressful for her.
I'm happy to report that things are going a lot better and it seems like each week she does better. We've been setting her up to win with new dogs by introducing her dead last. That way the new dogs are distracted by the rest of the group and Phoenix is also distracted by the group. She is not able to zero in on a new dog to chase and nip or get snarky upon greeting them. We control the greetings by feeding the other dog so Phoenix can sniff them without conflict. We are very careful and thoughtful on how we do greetings and it's really helping. She's doing amazing outside of my work when we go hiking and meets new dogs on her own without help. We have not seen much snarky behavior in weeks, most of what we see is avoidance or a very low level lift lip. We've even seen her solicit play from new dogs out at the park, which is amazing.
Playing in the water surrounded by new dogs she's never seen before!
The chasing and nipping has gotten much better as well. Today I actually saw her think about **NOT** doing it. She started to do it and then stopped herself, turned around and came back to me. She was SO good!!! I was excited to see her do that. She is also not nipping as much if she does end up chasing and is able to recall off the dogs and come to us. We've also seen some play that did not include chasing with her, actual play bows and jumping around a little. It was so cute!
The separation anxiety and worrying about where I am has gotten much better. My coworkers report that she's doing really well and participating in all the training activities that they've been doing. She's still really worried when the dogs are transitioning to go home but we wait until she's completely calmed down before she's allowed to get back to me, which seems to be helping a lot too!
I'm so happy with her progress and I'm really glad that I stuck with the play groups, even though she had a hard time at first. I'm so thankful that I work with awesome trainers and that my coworkers have been so helpful with her. The support I've gotten has been amazing. I wish everyone had a facility like this to help them.
Note: Our play groups are not in any way close to what you would find at a traditional "Doggie Daycare". Our facility is first and foremost a training facility where we work with the dogs to help them with their issues and understand them better. I do not recommend traditional doggie daycare for dogs who have dog/dog issues, as they can end up flooding a dog and causing more issues. A training facility that understands behavior, does training and careful, thought out introductions is where Phoenix goes and it's the only sort of facility I would ever recommend. Pet owners need to thoroughly vet the places they are taking their dogs.
Hi everyone! I hope you're all having a fantastic day! Today I have a dog food review for you. We were excited when Nature's Logic asked us to try their food. I've heard wonderful things about this company. We actually tried a few samples of the food a few months ago when Zoe wasn't feeling well and it was the only thing we could get her to eat.
Nature's Logic is a company that provides pet owners with a variety of top notch pet foods, treats and supplements. They were founded in 2006 by Scott Freeman. Scott wanted to develop a pet food that focused on the benefits of whole food nutrition without using added synthetic supplements that other food companies use. Since nothing like this had ever been created, Scott sent the food for AAFCO feeding trials to have them substantiated for
All Life Stages. They passed with flying colors. The ultimate goal of Nature’s Logic is to provide the most nutritious
and safest product that people can feel good about feeding their canine
and feline family.
All of food from Nature's Logic are 100% natural and free of common allergens. There are no synthetic vitamins or minerals.
Nature’s Logic Canine Venison Meal Feast
is a blend of Venison meal from New
Zealand combined with Nature Logic's concentrate of dried vegetables and
fruits. It’s ideal for dogs of all ages, sizes, and breeds.
Nature’s Logic Canine Rabbit Meal Feast
is a blend of rabbit meal from
European-raised rabbits combined with Nature Logic's exclusive concentrate of dried
vegetables and fruits. It’s ideal for dogs of all ages, sizes, and
Both of the dogs really enjoyed the food we tried from Nature's Logic, even Zoe, who is super picky! They both did really well on the food. I really like that the food is all natural and doesn't contain any synthetic vitamins or minerals. I'm really happy with how the dogs did on it and we will definitely be getting this food again. I would recommend checking them out!
ZoePhee was provided with samples of Nature's Logic dog food in exchange for an honest review. We were not monetarily compensated and all opinions are my own!
Things are going a lot better the past two weeks at work with Phoenix. We have only had one new dog join the group and she's getting along okay with him. She also learned a new skill this week: Going through the tunnel!
A few years ago, there was no way she would do this. I'm pretty happy with her progress. She's doing really well and she's such a good girl. She's trying really hard to figure out how to dog with other dogs.
Phoenix's favorite friend from work is Percy, the border collie. We spent some time last week doing agility with all the dogs. They got to do the jump, tunnel and our pause table.
This morning I got a pretty hateful comment on one of my old reviews for some leashes. The comment was in regards to my dogs wearing harnesses:
"oh god... harnesses.. great way to teach your dogs to pull are you too stupid to actually train your dogs to walk CORRECTLY on a collar?!?!?!?"
Usually I don't feed the trolls but today I decided I wanted to talk about this, since there's a huge misconception about harnesses.
Harnesses DO NOT teach dogs to pull on leash. Humans teach their dogs to pull on leash by not teaching them what they would like them to do instead of pulling. It can also be an impulse control issue as well. A "back clipping" harness **can** give a dog more leverage to pull if they have not been trained and the dog can be more easily reinforced for pulling because the owners might have less control. This is a training issue. It's NOT about what sort of gear you choose. Dogs can pull in any sort of gear at any time, even aversive equipment.
Now let's address the "too stupid" part. It is actually much more challenging to train a dog to walk nicely on a harness than it is a collar and if I can train a dog to walk politely in a back clipping harness, surely I can teach a dog to walk nicely with the leash attached to collar. My dogs can and do walk nicely in their collars all the time and I spend several nights a week helping other owners to achieve this as well, you know... at the dog training facility, where I work...
I **choose** to use harnesses on my dogs because I feel they are safer and more comfortable for the dog to wear. If a squirrel were to run across our path and they do lunge for it, their necks and tracheas are protected. Even the most well trained dogs might go for a squirrel or something and I'd rather the dogs not hurt their necks. I think a harness can be a great piece of equipment to use on a dog, especially for hiking and other outdoor adventures and we will continue to use ours.
We are product testers and I am fully aware the harness on Phoenix does not fit her very well. I didn't feel like bringing her home, putting a different one on her and re-filming.
It's that time of year again! Spring and Summer fun with dogs!
Goodbye winter! Hello fun activities! No matter what you're choosing to do, whether you'll be hiking or maybe taking a new training class, I have a gear recommendation for you! Zoe and Phoenix absolutely love going on new adventures, hiking trips and exploring the great outdoors and we always have a blast testing out gear. We only share products that we completely believe in.
Hurtta is one of our favorite companies, they have been producing top notch dog gear for the last 20 years! They offer a variety of different items from amazing dog coats to cooling coats, boots, life jackets, harnesses, leashes, collars. You name it and Hurtta probably has it. One of my favorite things about Hurtta as a company is that they are constantly testing and improving the quality of their products.
When we go on our outdoor adventures or training classes with Zoe and Phoenix, the first thing I always pack is their harnesses. I prefer training and walking my dogs with their leashes attached to a harness and I feel that harnesses are the best way to keep dogs safe in the outdoors or challenging conditions.
Phoenix practicing "Treibball" wearing her Y2 Harness and a long line for safety!
Attaching a leash to the collar could be harmful to a dog's neck if they were to
see something and suddenly jerk on the leash, not to mention the added
pressure on their necks can cause some dogs to become reactive or
stressed. (For more information why you shouldn't attach a leash to your
dog's collar, please see this article:"Is it harmful to attach a leash to your dog's neck?" by Emily Larlham)
generally only use our collars for their tags, quick potty trips out in
our yard or when we go on our off leash hikes, where the leash is only
attached to the collar from the car right to the trail and then they are
taken off the leash.
ThePadded Y andPadded Y2
Harnesses are my favorite harnesses from the Hurtta line. These
harnesses are great for walks, hikes and dog sports of all kinds! This
harness is also great for dogs who may suffer from neck or back issues,
if the dog happens to pull on the leash, the close-fitting harness
distributes pressure evenly across the chest, preventing damage to the
dog’s vertebrae and trachea. These harnesses are padded with neoprene,
they are light weight and so comfortable for the dogs to wear. They do
not cause any rubbing of the fur or skin. The harnesses are easy and
quick to put on and my dogs have never had a problem adjusting to
Padded Y2 Harness is a little different from the original design, it
has an O ring in the front and a longer strap on the back. I really like
the updated design and I like that I could attach a leash to the front
of the harness on the chest if I needed to. Both of these harness styles
are excellent. The Y2 does run a little bigger than the original so if
you're upgrading you might want to get one size smaller than the
original Y that you had.
harnesses have one point of adjustment so measuring carefully is
important. The chest measurement is the most important one, from my
TheActive Harness is a great harness for any adventurous dog! This is my favorite one for hiking trips. This harness is sturdy, padded and has 4 points of adjustment. It's a little more heavier duty than the previous harnesses. The back has a handle that is comfortable to hold on to. I really love this harness and use it on narrow trails or when we go hiking where there might be sharp cliffs. It makes me feel like I'm keeping my dogs safe in those kinds of situations. I also like the added handle that I can hold on to when we pass other hikers. The handle is also useful for keeping dogs secure in vehicles.
ThePadded Harness was our very first harness that we purchased from Hurtta. It was what started our obsession and deserves an honorable mention! I've had these harnesses for as long as I've had Zoe. So going on 6 years and the harnesses are still in excellent condition, despite all the adventures we've been on, all the mud dirt and times I've dropped them in the washing machine. This harness is different from the Y and Y2 as it does not have a strap that goes between the legs. The design on this one is for over the head and buckling behind the front legs. My dogs do seem to pull a bit more in this harness and it's a great harness for nosework or any sort of scent detection where it's okay for a dog to pull.
ThePadded Collar is neoprene-padded, reflective and is comfortable in use and provides long-range visibility. If you would like to see us putting the padded collar through it's paces, check out our video of Phoenix swimming: https://youtu.be/oR0iNxrSXFo. The Hurtta Padded Collar is the only collar I trust them to wear and not get ruined when we go get muddy at the park or hitting the trails!
TheMountain Rope Leashes are comfortably and soft to hold in your hand. They are highly durable and resembling climbing ropes in structure and materials. Hurtta recently updated their leads, replacing the mental with aluminium, which is highly durable, stainless and extremely light. Rope leashes are my favorite kind to use and I love these!
All of the harnesses, padded collars and rope leads have 3M reflectors that help keep you safe in low light conditions. All of the gear from Hurtta is machine washable. I would recommend using a garment bag and a gentle cycle. Don't dry the gear in a machine, air dry only.
We absolutely love our gear fromHurtta! Everything we've ever gotten has lasted for years. Hurtta is a fabulous company and wonderful to work with. I highly recommend checking them out and giving their gear a try!
Happy Spring everyone! What sort of adventures will you be going on this year with your dogs?
ZoePhee received products from Hurtta in exchange for our honest thoughts and opinions. All opinions are my own. We were not monetarily compensated.
We are partnering with Hurtta and Major Dog to give one of our readers a chance to win a prize pack worth up to $100! One (1) lucky winner will receive theHarness of their choice, aPadded Collar and aMountain Rope Leash from Hurtta and aTiger Toy from Major Dog. The giveaway is open to USA and Canadian (excluding Quebec), age 18 years or older. Please follow the directions on the giveaway widget to enter. The winner will be notified by email and have 48 hours to reply before I choose someone else. Good luck everyone!
Today we've got a Phoenix update! Phoenix goes to play group once a week on Mondays and she is doing pretty well with our established group. We don't see her playing very often yet but she's able to hang out with the other dogs and she does try to play with a few of her favorites. She's just not sure how it all works yet. "How do I get these dogs to play with me?" (That doesn't involve chasing and nipping or third wheeling.) Attending play group has also helped her with her dog interactions in the real world. She has been doing great when we go to the off leash hiking park. She's even solicited play from some random dogs we've come across out there!
With all the good stuff, Phee still struggles sometimes when she meets new big dogs. Greetings can be stressful and she gets scared. We had three new dogs start yesterday and she had trouble with one of them. I guess one out of three isn't ridiculously horrible but sigh... The greeting was not what we usually do with her, the dog showed up early (new dogs are supposed to come in last) we didn't control our antecedents very well and we had a snarky incident. Nobody was hurt but it wasn't pretty. Then the rest of the session, Phoenix struggled with that dog being in close proximity to her. Eventually everybody did settle down and everything was fine but it was not her best day.
Everyone at my work is very supportive and we think these are issues we can work through with her. There are other dogs that come who used to have way worse issues and they've been worked with and are doing great. I keep trying to remind myself that all dogs have good and bad days, just like us! Training takes time and she is only able to go once a week. My co-workers tell me that she is doing better each week and she also does better when I am not in the room with her.
When things go wrong, it's so much harder when it's your own dog. I can watch other dogs have their grumpy moments all day long but when it's my dog, it really gets me emotional. My boss has given me a mantra to repeat: "Conflict is normal". So I try to remember that shit happens, they're animals. We just do the best we can and that's all we can do.
So that's my Phee training update. She's a work in progress! Overall she's doing well so I'm trying to look at the bigger picture and not let an occasional off day get us down.
I also just wanted to let you guys know that I've been having technical difficulties with my computer and camera so it's been making it hard to blog and visit blogs. So this is why you guys haven't been seeing much of me.
Hi everyone! I hope you're all having a fantastic day! Today we have a super cool review and giveaway to share with you! I was so excited when Isle of the Dogs contacted me and asked me to try out some of their products. I was a groomer for more than 13 years and I first discovered IOD when I groomed at a vet clinic. Since then I've used their products pretty frequently on my own pets with fantastic results.
Isle of the Dogs story begins with a woman named Becky Rao. An owner of champion Brittany Spaniels, Becky always knew that a beautiful, healthy coat was the ultimate advantage in the extremely competitive world of show dogs. Show dogs need to be washed often, so her challenge was to find a product that would cleanse the coat without damaging it. Becky had heard the story of a dog named Lucy, who was a west highland white terrier and had lost 90% of her hair due to a skin condition that even her veterinarian couldn't diagnose. However, her coat was remarkably restored thanks to a concoction that her groomer, David Grimes, came up with. The treatment included evening primrose oil, royal jelly and even a splash of eau de cologne, had a nearly bald Lucy fully coated in soft, shiny fur in around 5 weeks. Becky incorporated this formula into her grooming regimen for her own show dogs leading to great accolades on the professional show dog circuit. Becky and her husband Kailas decided to start their own business and named it Isle of the Dogs. Today their business features a full line of natural grooming products, nutritional superior treats and supplements. All of their products are sourced in the USA.
We live in Oregon and during the rainy season, which this past year has been nearly 5 months straight, things get very muddy and gross. Zoe and Phoenix still need exercise, so when we go hiking, they tend to get extremely dirty. I don't do dirty, stinky dogs. They get washed as soon as we get back. It's great to have products available that clean them well but don't dry their skin out or cause any irritation. Isle of the Dogs has been a lifesaver!
Silky Oatmealshampoo is a mild and gentle shampoo that
will help create a soft and silky feel to the coat. It can be used on
any breed or coat type, and has the benefits of oatmeal and jojoba, which
help soothe dry skin. Silky Oatmeal shampoo is sulfate and paraben free.
Silky Oatmeal Conditioner is a deeply penetrating
product that was designed to moisturize the coat for a soft, silky smooth look and feel. Using this conditioner helps to loosen up the
old, shedding hair that gets caught up in the coat. It helps make the
brushing process much easier and reduces tangles. This conditioner is also
sulfate and paraben free.
I've used Isle of the Dog's Oatmeal Shampoo and Conditioner for years and I've had great results. Their coats always come out so soft and it helps to remove the extra shedding hair. This shampoo and conditioner does have a pretty strong perfume smell when you're applying it, which is the only downside, if you're sensitive to perfume or other smells. The shampoo and conditioner rinse out well and the perfume smell is a lot lighter when the coat is completely dry.
Coco Clean De-Shed Shampoo is a custom formulation that reduces excessive shedding, while maintaining a clean and healthy coat. Coco Clean shampoo is soap-free, sulfate free, paraben free and is infused with coconut oil.
Coco Clean Brush Spray Depending on the hair type, in
order to prevent hair damage, it's important to avoid brushing a dry coat. Brush spray helps reduce shedding, static and maintains a silky,
healthy coat that stays cleaner, longer. Blended with coconut oil to
help improve overall skin and coat condition. Also features ExtenScent,
a natural odor-neutralizing complex that extends freshness and keeps
dogs smelling better, longer.
I think I'm in love with the Coco Clean De-Shed Shampoo! I also really like the Brush Spray and generally, I am not a fan of leave-in products but this one is growing on me! The De-Shed shampoo is amazing. Zoe tends to be a shedding beast around twice a year and this combination of products has really helped! I also tried the shampoo on my cat, who sheds a ton, and it did an amazing job removing her excess hair! It's nice to find a product that is gentle enough to use on cats, as they can be sensitive to things.
I wish I had some of this Brush Spray when I lived in Nevada! In the desert there's a lot of static cling problems! The Brush Spray is the first leave-in product that I've ever really liked. It's hard to find a leave-in pet product that does not leave some sort of film or greasy feel to the coat. This one does not do that and I'm very happy with it. I like to use the Brush Spray in between baths to freshen them up and whenever I'm going to do any heavy brushing or de-shedding.
I'm so excited by the Coco Clean products that we are going to be partnering with Isle of the Dogs and hosting a giveaway. The details will be at the bottom of the review.
Isle of the Dog also offers a variety of healthy treats and supplements!
Skin - Soft and Chewy Treats - featuring flaxseed and kiwi. A softer, chewier treat that helps to condition,
moisturize, and improve overall skin health. Dogs shouldn’t itch or
scratch any more than we do. While there can be many causes of dry,
flaky skin, the first place to look into is what we feed our dogs. To
promote healthy skin and thick, shiny hair, Isle of the Dogs have combined whole
flaxseeds with kiwi fruit with added cherries and apples to enhance the
sweetness. All the benefits of a fresh-from-the-farm diet, rich in
nutrients and sun soaked fruits, in one delicious bite.
Guilt-Free 100% Natural Baked Treats - featuring Pumpkin and Sweet Potatoes. Isle of the Dogs'guilt-free treat is gluten-free and sugar-free, so
you can be guilt-free when spoiling your dog. Cinnamon has been added to
this biscuit to bring even more benefits. Cinnamon helps regulate blood
sugar and increase the body’s ability to use insulin, aiding at-risk
and diabetic dogs. It also helps ease arthritis pain, helps improve
brain function, as well as helping to boost energy, vitality, and
circulation. Sweet potatoes and pumpkin serve as great sources of fiber.
Both Zoe and Phoenix really enjoyed these treats! I really like that they are made from all natural ingredients that are sourced in the USA.
Overall I am very impressed with all of the items that were sent to me by Isle of the Dogs and I would highly recommend checking their products out!
Do your dogs shed a lot? Do you groom them yourself and how often?
We really liked the Coco Clean products and I would like to give one of our lucky readers a chance to try them.
The giveaway will be open to US residents age 18 or older. Please see the giveaway widget for the full rules and regulations.