Category Archives: Uncategorized

Homemade treats: Peanut butter “donuts” with carob

November’s BarkBox included a fun recipe for Homemade dog treats. Titled Protein-Packed Peanut Butter Mini Donuts (recipe on BarkPost through the link) the treats are very easy to make, look great!, and certainly passed the (many) taste tests.

The recipe has just seven ingredients (flour, egg, baking soda, milk, peanut butter, carob powder and water). 

Mixed together, the dough is quite stiff. The recipe recommends using two spoons or a pastry bag to fill the mini donut pan. My Ziploc bag with the corner cut out wasnt strong enough and the dough popped through, so I reverted to using spoons.

I doubled the recipe, and in three amout of time the first pan of donuts took to bake, the remaining dough had risen so the second batch was fluffier than the first.

Rather than create a mess by drizzling the carob-water glaze on the donuts, I made the glaze thicker and dipped the donuts in. This gave me the classic donut look without glaze being all over them.

Happy baking!

National Ride The Wind Day

Today is National Ride The Wind Day, a carefree day near the end of summer to kick back, let the breeze through your hair, and float above the clouds.

Dogs can celebrate this day in their own way, literally, by floating through the air, using their skills to help their fellow animalkind. 

National Geographic has this coverage of skydiving dogs in Africa. Partnered with a handler, they float down from a plane then begin pursuit of poachers, mostly of ivory.

Take a second today, kick back and enjoy the fresh air, pet a puppy, and read this inspirational article.


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Home Dog Spa on Amazon

Browsing Amazon today I found this contraption; a home pet spa. Solving a lot of the frustrations of bathing dogs, the Pet Spa features a hand-held wand for reaching those ‘hard to wash’ areas, the side mist jets help ensure a thorough rinse, and the tall sizes help eliminate you from getting soaked by a shaking dog!

It has a connection to your plumbing and a flexible drain hose. It also features an adjustable platform to fit dogs of all sizes!

It just goes to show, you can find anything on Amazon!

Home Pet Spa

Screenshot 2017-07-04 at 8.58.38 AM

Most recent order included Dexter’s favorite: Buddy Biscuits

I like to make sure that I choose healthy and simple food for myself and selecting pet treats is no different. I make sure Dexter gets a balanced regular food, and want to keep treats simple and healthy but not overly filling, as I don’t want the treats to replace his main meal.

When I was on last, I saw these great, simple, grain-free treats and thought I would give them a try. Buddy Biscuits are made in the USA with only seven ingredients, including peanut butter and chick pea flour. 

Buddy Biscuit box front

Buddy Biscuits box back

Buddy Biscuits box side panel

When I opened the package (which was shipped free and arrived two days later) I saw the size of the biscuits, and it is perfect. Slightly larger than two quarters, one biscuit is enough to let him enjoy it without filling his belly. 

Buddy Biscuits shape and size

The biscuits come sealed in a plastic longer which helps to keep them fresh, while the outer cartoon had a hole cut so you can see how many you have left 🙂

They have a net Facebook page ( where they do giveaways and interact with fans, and their website ( where you can find out more about all their flavors (peanut butter, roasted chicken, bacon & cheese, and filled beef) as well as their small range of Grooming supplies. 

Be sure to submit your pics of where your ‘Buddy’ has traveled and maybe you’ll see it on their site!

Hot and Spicy Foods Day

In celebration of International Hot and Spicy food day, we look at what foods are safe for dogs. Specifically, can you feed your dogs foods that humans would find spicy.

First, what makes a food spicy? It is the capsaicin oil in the food that binds to receptors in our mouth that give us the “hot” sensation.

According to this article in Psychology Today, dogs have around 1700 taste buds, significantly fewer than humans – with approximately 9000.

So, their ability to taste is much more diminished than humans, but what about capsaicin?

The Canine Journal lists Spices (including those containing capsaicin) as an irritant, and not a toxin. 

Based on this information, yes, dogs can taste spices, they probably can’t taste it well, and of ingested will be more irritating than dangerous, but since dogs wouldn’t naturally gravitate toward eating spicy foods it wouldn’t be a good idea to feed it to them.

As always, before feeding things to your dog please consult your vet.

If you encounter an emergency situation, call poison control immediately.

There are a number of hotlines available, at different costs, but the ASPCA 24-hour emergency poison hotline can be reached at 1-888-426-4435.

The Pet Poison Helpline is available 24 hours per day and 1-855-764-7661. 

For day to day peace of mind, consider having a Pet First Aid kit, such as this one by the AKC, available.

These common plants can be toxic to dogs

Recently in the news was the story of two bears that had mysteriously died. As it turns out the bears had consumed some shrub leaves that are toxic to bears.

What plants do we innocuously believe are safe to have around dogs that may cause them harm.

As it turns out, the ASPCA has put together a surprisingly long list of indoor and indoor plants that may cause poisoning if ingested.

The complete list can be found here.

The list is not meant to be exhaustive and underscores the importance of having an emergency poison control numbers available in case of emergency.

There are a number of hotlines available, at different costs, but the ASPCA 24-hour emergency poison hotline can be reached at 1-888-426-4435.

The Pet Poison Helpline is available 24 hours per day and 1-855-764-7661. 

For day to day peace of mind, consider having a Pet First Aid kit, such as this one by the AKC, available.

Hands-On With The Details Pet Activity Link (PAL)

Disclaimer: I was part of the Kickstarter campaign which didn’t result in funding, but the nice people at R2PPet sent out a free PAL to everyone who did support them.

Keeping active and getting regular exercise are important for people and pets alike. With the explosion of human activity trackers (like the FitBit, Wifi connected scales, calorie tracking apps) came the existence of several pet trackers.

I backed the Kickstarter campaign because I was looking for an affordable tracker. Some trackers, like the Whistle, offer more features like live-GPS tracking, but all I needed was something to monitor steps, track rest time, and nutrition. At under $50, the Details Pet Activity Link fit the bill.

It arrived in a very nice retail box, with everything I needed to get started including a battery, and a link to the required free app. The production devices come in seven colors, but I received a blue one. The box contains the PAL unit, a Quick Start Guide, and a FCC statement sheet. I was initially disappointed in the lack of information, but found that the documents answered all my questions and did get me started quickly. As of this writing (5/10/16), the accompanying website was still under development and didn’t have an FAQ.

Setup was very easy. Literally, you just have to push the button on the back of the unit using a paperclip and tracking starts; you are good to go.

Details Pet Activity Link (PAL) Unboxing Box Contents

It is well designed, and they advertise it as “weatherproof”, but are careful to say it is not waterproof. The device is made from rugged yet light plastic, and the battery compartment seals with a rubber gasket.

Details Pet Activity Link (PAL) Battery Compartment Seal

Attaching the unit to your dogs collar is very easy and the band loops back onto itself to keep it securely connected.

Details Pet Activity Link (PAL) Battery Double-back Fastening to Dog Collar

The app download was fast, and discovered the device quickly. There is a battery monitor in the app showing the remaining charge. The battery is not rechargeable, but it is a common watch battery you can buy at Best Buy or most department or jewelry stores. The expected charge is expected to last four months. Aside from the internal components, there is a red LED inside the housing that flashes when data is transmitting from the device.

The sync speed is good at about 45 seconds to a minute, but since so little data has to be uploaded to the phone, I expected it to be shorter. I chose a time just before bed, or while watching TV when my fuzzy buddy wasn’t moving. The phone has to be in range and the unit was always within 5 feet of my phone during a sync.

The app is useful, colorful and well-designed. It allows you to set nutrition, activity, and rest goals, and when data is available, shows your pets percentage to each goal. I would have liked to see a “Sync Now” button rather than having to choose a date, select one of the three modes (rest, activity, nutrition), then pressing Sync. You are provided with weekly graphs with percents and totals.

After a successful sync, you get a fun “Award” screen showing progress. I couldn’t figure out the best way or time to download the data. Sometimes it wouldn’t return any data despite our daily walk, other times the data would seem a bit high. I don’t know if their proprietary algorithm needs some tweaking or if the PAL unit needs to be under the chin to record accurately (sometimes the unit would be on the side of the neck).

There are several other trackers out on the market including the Whistle, FitBark, and the SafePet Bark & Activity Monitor. Each has its strengths and weaknesses and fills a niche. From the basic PetSafe product which has more of a pedometer feel and PC but no mobile device support, to the mid-range FitBark and Details PAL (approximately $70 & $30 respectively) to the high-end Whistle (approximately $80 plus monthly subscription) there is a tracker out there for all budgets and desires.