Category Archives: safety

Benebone and Other Great Made In America Dog Toys


Originally started through crowdfunding, Benebone has become very popular and I can speak from experience, that my dogs love them! Made in New York of USA-sourced nylon with the flavor from real bacon, peanuts, and chicken; they are durable and highly addictive! Starting with their ‘wishbone’ shape, they have since branched off into several different models and flavors. Check out the original bacon Wishbone here.

I agree with the top reviews on Amazon that all of the Benebone products are durable even for the heaviest of chewers. They come in several sizes so be sure to select the one that is appropriate for your dog.

Pros:

  1. Very durable. Will provide a very long ‘chew time’ even for big dogs.
  2. Made using Real Flavors from real bacon, peanuts, and chicken.
  3. Come in a variety of shapes and sizes to appeal to any dog.

Cons:

  1. Can be too hard for some dogs. Make sure you select the correct size and monitor your dogs usage of this product.
  2. Cost. They can be more expensive than other nylon toys, but consider the size and amount of engagement your dog will get from Benebone versus another nylon product.

Overall, these toys are great for all sizes of dogs, just be sure to select the correct format.

Another great nylon product Made in the USA is from Nylabone.

There is a reason that the Nylabone website starts with “For Every Reason To Chew, There’s A Nylabone”. This long-standing company makes hundreds of products for heavy chewers. Treats, bones, toys, and chews; they make it all. All sizes, shapes, and flavors, you will find a Nylabone product that your dog will find irresistible.

Pros:

  1. Comes in every combinations of size, shape, and flavor you can imagine.
  2. Products for all states of life (puppy & adult).
  3. Covers all price ranges, from value to premium.

Cons:

  1. Can be overwhelming to find the ‘right’ product. Be sure to use their Custom Product Finder on their website.
  2. Scent can be weak or fade quickly. Some reports from these toys say that the scent can be weak. Be sure to keep the package sealed until ready to share with your pup!

Overall, the track record of this company is stellar and they are sure to have a toy to exactly match your dogs engagement level, but don’t stress over finding the perfect toy; use their product search feature to find a few your dog will like!

West Paw designs and manufactures their toys in Bozeman, Montana. Their in-house team carefully designs and tests their toys to ensure they will be loved, and loved for a long time. They come in fun colors and are environmentally friendly, and non-toxic. They have an ever-expanding list of toys available and all kinds of fun an innovative shapes.

Pros:

  1. Fun, colorful, designs. Very unique shapes for fun and stimulating play.
  2. Good size product range for a lot to choose from specific for your dogs play style.
  3. Money back, or product replacement guarantee.

Cons:

  1. Some reports of quickly destroyed toys. Be sure to take advantage of their guarantee.
  2. Limited availability – mostly independent pet stores, but check for them on Amazon.

Overall, West Paw is a highly engaged company that puts a heavy emphasis on creativity and ensure long play time with their fun and durable products. Contact them if – for some reason – your dog destroys the toy quickly.

 

Palo-Alto

Brent-Wood Products has introduced small to extra-extra large Bow Wow dog houses. They are made from upcycled wood, and built in Los Angeles. The image above is their Palo-Alto model. Using the sizing guide on their website in the link above, or call them directly at 800-400-7335 and they will help you select the right house for your dog.

Pros:

  1. Made in the USA using upcycled wood.
  2. High-design models built buy hand.
  3. Direct customer service number to plan your house with a consultant.

Cons:

  1. Limited retail outlets to see models and order in person. Check out their website for the list of retailers.

Overall, this custom product will provide a stylish and spacious outdoor home for your dog.

Buying American has many benefits including ensuring that jobs are created and stay in our economy. That also has the secondary benefit of keeping money in communities where those people live. By creating products and adding value to physical goods that we modify and build here, we are increasing our GDP, a measure of our global competitiveness. Everything that we build and keep in our country reduces our reliance on importing foreign goods. When someone in your community builds a product, you know they will stand behind it and offer a high level of service after the sale. You can also know that they are aware of the components of that product and there is an increased likelihood that the output is safer than an unknown product.

Dog Toys (And More!) Made In The USA

Last article featured mostly dog treats and food Made In America, but this time In this we look at some durable toys and durable products that your dog will love.

Not only will these products improve the lives of your puppy, but when you buy American, you support our domestic economy. Keeping money here helps create and maintain jobs in our communities. It helps fund schools and has a ripple effect because the money you spend to buy the product is spent again in a community close to home; by the men and women building and creating the things your dog loves. Not only will these products give your dog a warm heart, but yours too!

Planet Dog Orbee-Tuff BallsThese ultra-durable balls are made of non-toxic, 100% recyclable materials right here in the USA. The company even offers a guarantee if your dog destroys it. I can say that after several years of owning one of these, that it takes a lot of abuse and still looks brand new. It has an incredible bounce to it too, so it will keep your pup really engaged while playing. Check out some of their holiday themed balls as well!

American Mutt – American Mutt has a wide assortment of products all Made in America. They are one of the few companies I have seen that makes a dog bed 100% in the USA. Check out their CoreBlu bed which is Waterproof, Fungal-proof, and has an incredible 5 Year Warranty! With that commitment, you know the company and employees put care and attention into what they make. There are several styles of bed to choose from, including a bolster bed that is raised off the floor!

SaltSox – Protect your pups paws from summer heat, dirty sidewalks, hot sand and much more. The built-in heat barrier reflects radiant surface heat and the breathable mesh fabric allows for natural cooling. Perfect for when the temperatures soar! Check out their versions for temperatures both hot (LavaSox) and cold (SaltSox). Both varieties are made in Chicago, IL! The bottom of the sock even has a grippy sole to improve traction indoors and out. This is the perfect gift for dog lovers who live in cities, or the suburbs where regular walking on pavement and snow can cause injury.

AquaComb – This innovative tool is made in Sarasota, Florida. It connects to a hose (garden or otherwise) and the patent-pending fingers direct water beneath even the thickest of dog coats to help deep clean dirt and dander. The fingers come in two lengths for short and longer coats, so there is one that is perfect for your pet. It comes in four models as well, made specifically for dogs, made for grooming horses, and models for cleaning pool and spa filters. This product is great for 4-H clubs and others who spend lots of time washing dogs, grooming horses or ponies.

Best Movies Featuring Dogs

Recently Variety a slideshow titled “The Best Movie Dogs of All Time“. It was prompted by the release of the movie “Dog Days” and features twenty of the best appearances by dogs in movies through the years.

I will save you a ton of clicking and put the top 10 here, but following that I will list a few recent movies that I feel should have made the cut.

10. Buddy in “Air Bud” (1997)
9. Beethoven (1992)
8. Arthur from “Beginners” (2010)
7. The Beast in “The Sandlot” (1993)
6. Old Yeller (1957)
5. Flealick from “Babe: Pig In The City” (1998)
4. Marley in “Marley and Me” (2008)
3. Toto in “The Wizard of Oz” (1939)
2. Lassie in “Lassie Come Home” (1943)
1. “Benji” (1974)

I would like to add a few movies to this list to make it a little more current.

Bailey (Bailey, Bailey) from A Dogs Purpose (2017). While this wasn’t reviewed well by the Rotten Tomatoes critics, it definitely tugged at the heartstrings of the audience. In parts it was a hard movie to watch as it deals with the passing of “Bailey” several times as he comes back in a new incarnation, but because it was handled in a tasteful way, we were able to connect to the main storyline. Even though Bailey is played by several dogs, the ‘spirit of Bailey’ narrates the movie and brings us along on this journey.

Max from Max (2015) is another recent movie where the dog takes center stage. IMDB describes the movie as “A Malinois dog that helped American Marines in Afghanistan returns to the United States and is adopted by his handler’s family after suffering a traumatic experience.” Not only did it resonate with audiences, but provided the foundation for a sequel.

Because of the bond humans have with dogs in real life, it is no surprise that we can connect with canine-led stories in the movies. While a lot of movies are based on conjecture (us creating a story based on what we want to see rather than what dogs actually may be thinking or doing), they are inspirational and bring out the hope in all of us.

One agency that certifies that “No Animals Were Harmed” in the filming of these movies is the American Human Association, through their Humane Hollywood initiative. When you see their logo and the “No Animals Were Harmed” tagline in the credits of the movie you just enjoyed, you can know that the animals shown in the movie were treated fairly and safely during their time on and off set.

Exciting “Made In the USA” Dog Products

Every pet owner is looking to provide the best and safest food and toys to their pet. With concerns about the safety of imported goods, and as we look to strengthen our economy and keep money in within the border, we look to Made-In-The-USA products to fill those needs.

These are some exciting new products that are Made In The USA. All of them are creative ways to stimulate and improve the life of our pets.

If you haven’t had a chance to read an earlier post about buying American, please take a minute to do so now. It outlines some of the reasons why it is the first choice we should be making when looking to purchase anything for our home.

Some of the links below will take you to the product pages on Amazon where you can easily complete your purchase. Most of the products feature free shipping for Amazon Prime members. These are affiliate links which means we receive a small percent of the purchase to help cover the cost of operating this blog. The price you pay is the same whether you use the links here, or go buy directly through Amazon.

Clicking on the company name will bring you to the corresponding company page.

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Loving Pets make a canine dental treat, branded as Ora-Bone, features both breath-freshening ingredients, and textured surfaces to clean all areas of your dogs mouth. They are proudly manufactured in their American facility.

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Dogs Love Snapeas (from the makers of Dogs Love Kale) are award-winning, limited-ingredient treats made with no animal by-products. The three current varieties are Peas & Cheese, Peas & Chicken, and Peas & Beef. Check out their fun Facebook page too!

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The folks at Emerald Pet make their products in the USA from American ingredients. They have a full line of chews and toys, as well as Snug n’ Tug ultra tough toys.

 

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Earth Animal make a wide variety of innovative products, no-hide chews, and treats. How better can I say it than they do: “Earth Animal™ is proud to bring you our very own Veterinarian formulated vitamins & supplements, treats, chews, Wisdom Real Food, Organic Herbal Remedies, and Natural Flea & Tick Prevention Products. Each line of our treats has been carefully and thoughtfully sourced, truly made in The USA, and manufactured in a USDA Human Facility. They are safe and ultimately nutritious for your animals. Our protein is sourced by local farmers and our vegetables are real and organic.

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The From Family operates all three of their facilites in Wisconsin from which they manufacture and test all their products. Their four lines cater to all stages of growth and diets. Customers rave about the high quality how even picky eaters will like this food.

One of their innovative products is Four-Star Parmesan Cheese treats. They are grain free and come in a resealable bag. Their Four-Star products come in a wide variety of dried, canned, and treat formats. Chicken with Peas and Carrots, Lamb and Cranberry, and Salmon with Sweet Potato, are just a few of the creative recipes they have formulated!

 

Be sure to check out the quality and durability of all these American-made products.

Differences Between Service, Therapy, and Emotional Support Dogs

With so much publicity around the announcement from the Publix grocery chain that dogs – of any kinds or purpose – are not allowed in their shopping carts, and the policy change by American Airlines about which support animals are allowed on flights, it reminded me of this article from Animal Planet about what animals are covered under the Americans With Disabilities Act.

The Act dictates that dogs (and not miniature horses) that otherwise wouldn’t be permitted in areas, are allowed if they perform a specific task to assist their owner. Notably the act does not extend the same protections to Emotional Support, or Therapy Dogs. The latter two groups may be allowed based on statues passed by individual states, or by individual businesses, but they are not Federally mandated to do so.

It is important to protect access to public spaces to everyone, provided there is a balance that the accommodation to one party doesn’t adversely impede the access others are permitted. For example, an emotional support dog being allowed in a bookstore should be okay provided that the dog is performing its duties, and is not running around, causing problems or being noisy and negatively impacting the enjoyment of the bookstore for other patrons. In the case of a mis-behaving therapy or emotional support dog, the manager would be within their purview to ask the person to leave.

For example, read this interesting article from The Washington Post: Dogs In Grocery Stores: Therapy For Some, Annoyance For Others.

It is important to note that this access is provided as a courtesy by the manager rather than out of an obligation to adhere to the ADA.

The most important part of dog ownership, whether working or pet, is personal responsibility. Ensuring that when out in public, that your dog is well-behaved. Check out the 5 Essential Commands from Caesar Millan.

This is a list of 33 dog friendly stores, compiled by BarkPost, where our canine friends are welcome! There are lots of super-cute pictures of dogs out shopping!

Remember, cars get hot when they are in the sun, so, if you can’t bring your dog into a store, its probably best to leave them at home!

Update: Canine Companions for Independence released this document showing the different training and services that the various types of dog provide. Check it out here.

New ‘Made In the USA’ Dog Food & Toys

Providing the best and safest toy and food is always the most important part of taking care of our pets. Knowing the origin of the ingredients and components is one step to ensuring your pet says healthy for a long time.

These are a few new Made in the USA products I recently stumbled across, and are some that I will be checking out to see if my dogs will like them.

As I mentioned in a previous Made In the USA article, there are several important reasons to buy American. Not only do you know the source of the components, but you also help to support American jobs. Knowing that you are keeping your pet happy, and that you are also supporting your neighbors jobs, is satisfying on many levels. With domestic ingredients going into the product you buying, it multiplies the domestic benefits. Keeping money circulating in many communities.

Buying American is also great for the environment because all the products have shorter shipping distances, less fuel is needed to move it around; keeping the air clean as well.

Clicking the links below will bring you to either the manufacturer website or Amazon where you can research or purchase the products. Some are affiliate links. The purchase price isn’t higher, and the revenue from Amazon helps offset the cost of operating this blog.

fw-logo

One of my favorite products that I use all the time, at bath time, is FreshWorks dog shampoo. While some of their ingredients come from places outside the USA, their products are manufactured in Rising Sun, Indiana.

They have a complete line of all-natural home freshening products including dog shampoo! It has a great, fresh, natural smell and lathers just enough to manage, but doesn’t make bath time difficult.

 

dogswell

The jerky products by Dogswell are each formulated for a purpose such as Hip & Joint, Skin & Coat, Immunity and Defense. They are made from lean cuts of USA-sourced chicken breast, turkey or beef and are oven-baked in their own facility. Other products also include Norwegian salmon, New Zealand lamb, and European duck.

 

ruffdawg

RuffDawg is product line from Jefferson Rubber Works, a 50 person company in Worcester, MA creating a full line of dog toys and chews. Their Flying Fish Floating Dog Toy is fully recyclable, made of solid premium rubber, and from FDA-approved recyclable materials, free of phthalates, latex, and BPAs.

 

Evangers-Logo-240x80

Evanger’s is a family owned company started in 1935 and recently introduced a super-premium line of protein-based food for dogs and cats. Buying online saves lugging cans from the grocery store, but also is available from local pet stores Pet Supplies Plus.

 

indigenous-logo-sm

The people behind Indigenous Pet Products makes a kelp-based Dental Chew for dogs. They source USA-made ingredients, when possible, and have their manufacturing facility in Denver, Colorado. Kelp is a rich source of nutrients and is free from artificial colors and preservatives.

 

This is just a tiny sampling of products that help support the US economy, and help to ensure that we are feeding the best to our furry friends.

National Pet Fire Safety Day

National Pet Fire Safety Day

As the calendar rolls by July 15, we are once again reminded of Pet Fire Safety day. This day is two-fold; 1) how we can protect our homes from fires started by pets, and 2) how we can protect our pets in case of a fire.

ABC television affiliate WIRC’s Amy Lacey interviewed Lt. Jason Elmore from Chesterfield Fire & EMS. Click the image to open a new window with the video.

WRIC Amy Lacey Pet Corner Firefighter Interview

WRIC Amy Lacey Pet Corner

Back in 2009, The American Kennel Club together with ADT Security Services established National Pet Fire Safety Day to raise awareness among pet owners of the fire hazards their cat, dog or other animal could pose at home, with the hope that many of these fires can be prevented.

The AKC and ADT offer these tips:

PREVENT YOUR PET FROM STARTING FIRES

  • Extinguish open flames – Pets are generally curious and will investigate cooking appliances, candles, or even a fire in your fireplace. Ensure your pet is not left unattended around an open flame and make sure to thoroughly extinguish any open flame before leaving your home.
  • Remove stove knobs – Be sure to remove stove knobs or protect them with covers before leaving the house. According to the National Fire Protection Association, a stove or cook top is the number one piece of equipment involved in your pet starting a fire.
  • Invest in flameless candles – These candles contain a light bulb rather than an open flame, and take the danger out of your pet knocking over a candle. Cats are notorious for starting fires when their tails turn over lit candles.
  • Beware of water bowls on wooden decks – Do not leave a glass water bowl for your pet outside on a wooden deck.  The sun’s rays when filtered through the glass and water can actually heat up and ignite the wooden deck beneath it. Choose stainless steel or ceramic bowls instead.

KEEP YOUR PETS SAFE

  • Keep Pets Near Entrances When Away From Home – Keep collars on pets and leashes at the ready in case firefighters need to rescue your pet.  When leaving pets home alone, keep them in areas or rooms near entrances where firefighters can easily find them.
  • Secure Young Pets – Especially with young puppies, keep them confined away from potential fire-starting hazards when you are away from home such as in crates or behind baby gates in secure areas.
  • Since Pets Left Alone Can’t Escape a Burning Home – Consider using monitored smoke detectors which are connected to a monitoring center so emergency responders can be contacted when you’re not home. These systems provide an added layer of protection beyond battery-operated smoke alarms.
  • Affix a Pet Alert Window Cling – Write down the number of pets inside your house and attach the static cling to a front window. This critical information saves rescuers time when locating your pets.  Make sure to update the number of pets listed.

The ASPCA offers free window clings which you can order using this link.

The National Fire Protection Association offers this free downloadable checklist to help you prepare for the need to evacuate you and your pet. This is also helpful should you need to quickly leave your home during a fire. Household Pet Evacuation Kit

Always be prepared for pet emergencies with a Pet First Aid Kit.

 

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