Archive for November, 2012

Wordless Wednesday – Trip to Texas for Thanksgiving Part II

November 28, 2012

Before you look at these pictures, go visit our Pet Auto Safety Blog for the first nine Wordless Wednesday photos from our trip to Texas. The first nine photos consist of the trip itself and are not to be missed! Now check out the other eight photos below:

Pierson was obsessed with Odie, my parent’s bird. Maya had no interest in the bird what-so-ever. There was one instance where Pierson went after the bird in the cage, but no one was hurt.

Maya hopes for a piece of Thanksgiving Turkey to fall while everyone prepares their plate for the Thanksgiving feast.

Everyone passed out after dinner. Here is Maya resting with my brother and soon-to-be sister-in-law.

The day after thanksgiving, my husband and our friends Sha Sha and Jinbo decided to make a Chinese dinner feast for my family. Left to right, my dad, me, my husband, Jinbo, and Sha Sha. My step-mom is taking the photo.

After dinner, we play Apples to Apples.

Over the weekend, we went to downtown Austin. This is the capitol building.

Another photo taken in downtown Austin.

On the way home to Kansas. Jinbo and Sha Sha fall asleep while Maya looks on longingly from the back. We all enjoyed the trip but can’t wait to get back home.

Our Trip to Texas for Thanksgiving – Teaser Photo

November 26, 2012

Here is a photo from our trip to Texas for Thanksgiving. Be sure to come back on Wednesday for more photos!

Maya hopes for a piece of Thanksgiving Turkey to fall while everyone prepares their plate for the feast.

Enjoying Thanksgiving Weekend

November 24, 2012

Sorry, I don’t have a post prepared for this Saturday. I had hoped to share some photos of our trip to Texas to visit family this Thanksgiving. But I am unable to download the photos from my camera (I forgot the cord). Stay tuned and enjoy the rest of your Thanksgiving weekend!!! 🙂

No Wordless Wednesday – Visit our PetAutoSafetyBlog

November 21, 2012

We don’t have much available for Wordless Wednesday today. We are getting ready for our road trip from Kansas to Texas. By the time you read this, we might be halfway there! Check out some photos on our other blog, Thanks for stopping by!

Holiday Traveling with Pets – Packing for the Trip

November 17, 2012

Sephi and Maya asleep in the back seat of the car on one of our road trips to Texas.

Are you going out of town this holiday season? Are you taking your pets with you? Don’t forget all the important things your pet needs for the trip.

– Leash, if your pet is a dog
– Collar with tags (make sure tags are up to date; have tags even if your pet is microchipped)
– Water
– Pet food
– Pet food & water bowls
Pet waste bags for dogs/ litter and litter box for cats
– Pet blanket or bed
– Veterinary information (including vet contact info and vaccine information)
– Pet First Aid Booklet (we have one from Blue Pearl)
– Pet toys (optional)
Dog car harness, pet travel crate, or pet car seat if traveling by car
– Airline approved pet travel crate if traveling by airplane
– Meds (if applicable)

If your pet tends to get nervous during travel or get car sick, ask your vet if there is anything you can give them for the trip. I am trying a product called Travel Calm since Pierson is known to get car sick. I am hoping the Travel calm will also help keep Maya from getting so excitable as she tends to do when she rides in the car.

If your trip is a long one, be sure you pick up your dog’s poo at rest stops or anywhere else you stop. Take plenty of rest stops, especially if you have a hyper pet like my Maya. We are driving from Kansas to Texas this Thanksgiving. Check out our other blog,, for what we are doing to prep for such a long road trip.

Where are you going for the holidays? Is there anything that you bring for your pet that I might have forgotten to list?

Wordless Wednesday – My Favorite Pet Pics Collection

November 14, 2012

Welcome to the Wordless Wednesday blog hop. Today I’m sharing some of my favorite pet pics of Maya & Pierson. All of these have been taken within the past year but I don’t think I have shared them with you before.

Pierson, my little frog dog. I love how his legs stick out behind him when he lies down.

“In the old country, we didn’t have those fancy-schmancy dog toys.”

This pic was a little blurry so I didn’t share it before.

I did share this photo before, but I couldn’t resist sharing the photo of Pierson’s cute fuzzy spotted feet again.

Maya loves to play Basketball, although she has her own version of the game. 🙂

Three-Way Tug-of-War!

Maya gets really creative with her sleeping positions.

Wonderful Gifts from Purina Dog Chow and Nutro Natural Choice

November 10, 2012

Maya & Pierson Love Their Gifts.

I have received three promotional gifts within the past thirty days. I’m not sure if the gifts were intended to be an exchange for a review on my blog, or whether they were just simply given because I followed these companies on Twitter and Facebook. Well, since I have a blog, I’m going to go ahead and share these companies with you – Purina & Nutro.

Gifts from Purina Dog Chow
A week or so ago, I received a dog water bowl from Purina Dog Chow. It’s great and I already used it when I took Pierson with me to hang out in downtown Lawrence. Yesterday, I received another great gift from Purina – a really cool dog back pack. It is a little small for Maya because the straps won’t fit around her big chest, but it is perfect for Pierson. Now both Maya and Pierson have a back pack.

Pierson Poses with his Perfectly Proportionate Purina Pack.

I’m sure these gifts were given in hopes that I would give a good review. But considering the first four ingredients of Purina Dog Chow, I will not be able to give it. But let me be honest, I’ve had dogs in the past who ate nothing but Purina for their entire lives and they were not unhealthy because of it. And let me be honest again, there were times when I couldn’t afford better food for either myself or my pets. Does that make be a bad dog owner? I did the best I could for myself and for them. I’ve heard people say that if you can’t afford to properly care for your dog, then you shouldn’t have one. But I’ve also heard people criticize others for giving up their pets for that very reason. It can’t be both ways.

With that being said, even though Purina does not have the highest quality ingredients it does meet AAFCO standards. Through my own experience, many dogs will do just fine eating this food. But now that I am educated in pet health it is not my first choice. If times get tough, though, I’d rather get this relatively inexpensive dog food than give up my dogs.

Since I have learned so much about the ingredients of dog food, I think Purina needs to seriously reconsider their dog food ingredients. By-products are far from ideal. Corn is not an ideal ingredient either and should not be the first and most prominent ingredient. So what are the ideal ingredients? I do not feel that I am knowledgeable enough to give you that information. But I have learned that a meat listed with the word meal is better than a meat by-product. And meat it should be listed at least as one of the top three ingredients, if not the very first ingredient. For example, chicken meal instead of chicken by-product.

Gift from Nutro Natural Choice
So what dog food are my dogs eating now? They are trying several brands. Nutro is what they are eating now. I was first introduced to it when I got my dog Pierson. The very same day that I rescued him from the park, I took him to the Pawsh Wash to get rid of his fleas and ticks. They suggested Nutro Natural Choice because of its high protein content and essential vitamins, something Pierson needed greatly since he had been living as a stray for so long.

Nutro recently gave me Nutro dog treats, something my dogs hadn’t tried yet. As I look at the ingredients of the Large Breed All Natural Biscuits, I see lamb listed as the very first ingredient. Whole brown rice is the second. There is no corn and no by-product meats listed in the ingredients at all. And, of course, my dogs love them.

Nutro Natural Choice also gave me tartar control dog treats. As a stray, Pierson’s teeth are not in as good of shape as Maya’s. Pierson is younger, but his teeth are worse. I brush his teeth daily and improvements have been made. But perhaps these tartar control treats can help as well. Both Maya & Pierson love the taste of these treats too. And the ingredients are just as healthy as Nutro’s large breed treats.

Thank you, Purina and Nutro for the wonderful gifts. We love them! I’m sorry, Purina that we couldn’t give a great review for your food. But if you sell those back packs, we will be more than happy to promote them – the dog water dish as well. Perhaps as more people are educated about healthy dog food, you will come to realize that changing your ingredients are in both your best interest and in the best interest of pets everywhere. We look forward to your improvements and will be happy to try your product again when those improvements are made.

Wordless Wednesday – Random Cuteness

November 7, 2012

Just some random photos I took of Maya & Pierson this week:

When I get done with my other drawing projects, I think I will draw Maya from this photo.

And perhaps I will draw Pierson from this photo.


Or how about drawing from this photo of Maya sleeping. She looks deceptively angelic when she sleeps. 😉

Or I can draw a full body pose of Pierson so as to capture his cute spotted feet.


Maya’s a bed-hog but at least Pierson has a nice comfy pillow to rest his head.

Happy Wordless Wednesday!

What it is Like to Have a Labrador Retriever

November 3, 2012

Maya playing with one of her Kong dog toys.

Everyone once in a while I will write about a specific dog breed. The information is helpful and informative, but it can be a little dry. So I am going to do something a little different today. I am not just going to tell you about a specific dog breed, I am going to tell you about a specific dog. This very special dog is a Labrador Retriever and she is my Maya.

The Dog House event had a fun photo shoot where you could dress up your dog. Maya looks like the little clown that she is.

Very Affectionate
While Maya does fit into the general characteristic mold of a Labrador Retriever, she is unique in her own way. Unlike most Labradors, she is not overly needy for affection. Oh, don’t get me wrong, she loves attention. But she doesn’t beg for it. Perhaps this is because I work from home and give her plenty of love and attention. But even when I was away from home working in an office all day, she didn’t cause any trouble while I was gone. When I came home, she was excited and we would play then go for a walk. Then for the rest of the evening she was quiet and content with laying down beside me on the couch or at my feet.

Maya is a great cuddler.

Can be Hardheaded
I’ve heard Labradors can be hardheaded, but I just don’t see that trait in Maya; not even an ounce of it. Maya is my first purebred Lab so I am not sure what the Barron’s Dog Breed Bible means when they say Labs can be hardheaded. I know what hardheaded means. Sephi could be stubborn at times. But I just don’t see how it could apply to a dog like Maya. Perhaps Barron’s meant something else. Or perhaps they are wrong. Do any of you have a Labrador and can explain to me what Barron’s might be referring to?

Maya Wearing Daisy Diva Design Collar.

Virtually Non-Aggressive
Maya is the most amiable dog I have ever had. Every single dog I’ve had before Maya has been disagreeable in some way, whether with dog aggression, shy with people, or guard-dog qualities. Maya, however, loves everybody and every dog. One could be an ax-murderer and she would love them. I feel bad for her sometimes because she tends to be bullied by other dogs. Pierson can be a pest when playing with her but she just stands there and takes it, even if he is hurting her.

Maya always let Sephi win.

Right now Maya is laying at my feet, as quiet as ever. But say the words “walk”, “cookie”, or “outside” and I have a maniac on my hand. Goodness-forbid if someone comes over to the house. I have managed to get Maya to sit and stay while I answer my door or open the closet door for her food or her leash. But she whines impatiently and wiggles around so much that I question whether she is really obeying the stay command. And despite the fact that I have taught Maya not to jump on me or others, in her excitement she often forgets herself. At Dogtoberfest this year, she tried to jump on a lady who was petting her and ended up giving her a fat lip! Walks can be a nightmare too, especially when she sees another person or dog. She is getting much better, but she still has those moments when she is so excited that she pulls and barks.

Pull No More dog harness

Maya Wearing Her New Pull No More Dog Harness.

Maya is a very smart girl. She is not as smart as my dog Pierson but she is definitely smarter than my dog Sephi was. It doesn’t take long to teach her new tricks. If anything inhibits her training, it is her excitability. I have to keep training sessions short because if she gets too excited about doing tricks for treats, she stops listening and starts doing tricks at random until she finally does the one I asked for. When I try to get her to jump through the hula-hoop, like I taught Pierson, she jumps up but not through, thereby landing onto the hoop. She gets so excited about jumping that she doesn’t understand the concept of what she is supposed to do.

“I will do anything for a treat!”

Loves Water
The first time Maya saw a body of water, she ran so fast into the water that before I knew it, she was underwater, head and all. For a split second, I was worried I would have to rescue her. But she came out coughing, then jumped right back in and played for at least an hour. Check out this great video of Maya swimming at a public pool. Notice that a lot of the other dogs in the pool are also Labradors.

So there you have it. Information on the Labrador Retriever presented by my sweet, excitable, intelligent Maya. What is your Labrador like?

Here’s another great Lab – Callie.

The Mountain Labrador Collage Dogs Adult Tee T-shirt

This and other great Labrador gifts at our Amazon a-store, Labrador Retrievers Gift Store.