Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Free one year digital subscription to Animal Wellness Magazine!


Our good friends at Animal Wellness Magazine have provided you, our readers, with an amazing offer - a free one year digital subscription to their pawsome healthy magazine!

It's easy to sign up - just follow these instructions:

Step 1: Click the image and follow the link to the sign-up page
Step 2: Choose '1 Year Animal Wellness Digital Subscription'
Step 3: Fill in your details and create your login information
Step 4: Enter the coupon code - C3012 - in the ‘Coupon Code’ field at the bottom of the payment page and continue
Step 5: Start viewing the current magazine and our library of back issues

We hope you enjoy your subscription! And big, big thanks to Animal Wellness Magazine for providing this great offer to our readers!

Monday, October 24, 2011

Make your dog a Halloween Doggie Smoothie!

"Sliver'd in the moon's eclipse...nose of Turk, and Tartar's lips;"

There's just nothing better than a nice healthy sip after a long hike, a day playing in the leaves, or out trick or treating with the neighbor pups!

So why not make your dog a Halloween Doggie Smoothie! It's organic, healthy and super yummy.

"Adder's fork, and blind-worm's sting...lizard's leg, and owlet's wing."

Here's our recipe:Gather all your ingredients...


1 cup kefir - low-fat, plain, organic is best
A few oz. organic, unseasoned chicken stock
A nice slice of cooked liver
1/4 Lightly steamed organic (large) carrot
A dollop of canned pumpkin (make sure it's pure pumpkin, K?)
A splash of apple juice
A few slices of banana
Tsp of flax seed
Small spinach leaf.

"Double, double toil and trouble....fire burn, and caldron bubble!"

How to make it:

Throw all your 'creepy' ingredients into a blender (except the sprinkles and spinach leaf, add those after) and mix well. Serve immediately in a stainless steel dish, or chill for an hour in the fridge for a cooler treat. Sprinkle with crushed flax seed and a small spinach leaf.

Refrigerate any small amount of leftovers and use within 24 hours.

Remember, you don't have to use all the ingredients, the basics are the Kefir, fruits, veggies or meats. Don't forget to check what foods are safe for us pups if you decide to vary the recipe.

And as with all things - moderation is key, so start your pup out with smaller portions to begin with (about 4 oz.). Hope they enjoy their doggie smoothie!

From Macbeth! Some of the phrases used in this post are from Williams Shakespeare's play 'Macbeth." The phrases used are at the beginning of Act IV, Scene 1 of the famous play. Read and learn more about "Macbeth".

Thursday, October 20, 2011

We're presenting Daily Green Dog Tips for Dogster!

We are super excited!

Starting this past Monday we are providing Daily Green Dog Tips for Dogster website visitors and email subscribers.

This week's focus is on organic lawn care. And we have lots of great green tips planned in the coming weeks to talk about including disposing of the doo, handmade and repurposed gifts for the Holidays, and lots, lots, more  to help your dog go green for a happier, healthier dog and environment!


We're also sharing our daily tips on our Raise A Green Dog Facebook page every day, so head on over and 'like' us, K? We hope you enjoy the info that we'll be sharing over the coming months.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

It's Halloween...make it a green!

It's almost time for Halloween!

Halloween is a great time to have fun with your dog...so we thought we'd share some of our great green Halloween tips and ideas to make this Halloween the best ever for your dog!
Costumes

I don't usually mind, but some dogs just don't like to dress up for Halloween and that's OK! But if your dog doesn't mind, here are some great green ideas for whipping up a cool costume.

One of our absolute favorite costume ideas is this handmade spider costume that Martha Stewart made for her Sharkey. Make it green by using some old black and orange material from a sweatshirt or sweatpants! For more fun make-your-own pet costume ideas visit MarthaStewart.com.

Be creative and have fun finding reusable materials around your home as substitutes for suggested materials. Like this cute costume dress from an old t-shirt and some lace!

Here are a couple of patterns from McCalls that may help give you some sewing help. And for some other pawsome ideas, check out these:
If your dog is shy about wearing a costume, maybe all you need is a super cool orange bamboo collar, like this one from Eco-Dogs.com!

    Treats! Did someone say treats?

    Nothing goes with Halloween more than pumpkins and apples! Here's a great healthy, natural Halloween dog treat you can make for your pup (courtesy of eHow):

    Applesauce Pumpkin Cookies 

    Ingredients:
    Oven cookie sheet
    1½ cups whole wheat flour
    3 tbsp. (organic) applesauce
    2 eggs
    3/4 cup pure pumpkin (not pie filling)
    1 tbsp. molasses
    ¼ cup water

    Directions:
    1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F and grease the cookie sheet.
    2. Combine all the ingredients in a large-sized bowl, then mix together. The mixed batter should resemble the consistency of cookie dough.
    3. Depending on how big you want the cookies to be, use a teaspoon or tablespoon to drop the dough onto the greased cookie sheet. Drop them approximately 1 inch apart.
    4. Bake for 14 minutes or until the cookies are firm.
    5. For crunchier cookies, turn the oven off and leave the cookies in the oven to cool for one to two hours.

    This recipe makes approximately two dozen cookies, depending on how big you make them.

    If you need other ideas, try these Ginger Spiced Treats and Apple Dog Biscuits! Or just something as simple and yummy as a little Organic Sweet Potato from Eco-Dogs.com!

    Toys, oh yeah!!
     
    Holidays mean presents and that means a new toy! Toys can be expensive, so why not try making your own from reused items around your home? Here are some great green ideas!
    And if you're short on time, try one of these pawsome Halloween toys from PetsHeadToTail - Pumpkin, Bat, Ghost, Boogey Man!
      Have a Dog Howl-o-ween Pawty!!
       
      Halloween is a great time to have a dog party! So how do you plan a great green dog party? Check out my lens on Throwing a Great Dog Party, and utilize some of the tips you've learned from Raise A Green Dog to make it green!

      Stay calm!
       
      Halloween can sometimes be a scary time for dogs. With all the activity, visitors, door bells rings, treats, and scary human costumes, you're dog may need some help to get through all the activities.

      We like Canine Calm from Earth Heart. Just a little spritz on the belly, and rubbed on the ears and it may be just the key to help your dog cope a little more easily with all the Halloween activities.

      Another great idea is to pick up some Ginger Krispies from Simply For Pets. They are specially made with ginger to help dogs cope with tummy upsets from travel and from stressful activities.

      Be Safe!


      Halloween is a fun time, but it can also be a scary time for dogs! And dangers lurk in many more places. Take care with these safety tips, so your dog can have the safest, happiest Halloween ever!

      1. If you're dog doesn't want to dress up, respect the pup! There's nothing more scary than having to wear something that makes you uncomfortable. Try a nice orange collar or bandana instead. And only costume a dog that's agreeable, or has been properly introduced to the idea. If you do dress them up be sure the costume is safe. Sometimes those weird outfits can get caught and cause choking or even worse, so be safe!

      2. Those bowls of human candy can be very tempting for us dogs. Keep the bowl safely away, so we aren't tempted to get into the chocolate, candy with xylitol or other bad for us stuff.

      3. Lots of guests and visitors can be overwhelming for us dogs. So if your dog isn't used to all the commotion, secure them safely in a quiet room until trick-or-treating time is over. And if your dog does like all the visitors, make sure your dog is leashed up and wearing their tagged collars just in case; and take care to keep us from escaping through an open door. Safety first!

      4. Halloween decorations can be tempting if we haven't seen them for a year. Take care with your dog around electrical cords and lights, and other decorations. With all the stress, we just may be tempted to chew 'em up!

      Here's to a safe, happy and green Halloween!!!! Have fun!

      Sunday, October 9, 2011

      Our Top 10 Tips for Hiking the Green Dog Way!

      Mum, Gracie and I just love to hike!

      We live in the Mountains of NE Georgia, so we get to hike a lot and see some pawsome scenery, meet other fun hikers, and enjoy our time in the fresh air and great outdoors.

      We've learned over the years that there are some tips to hiking with dogs...tips to keep us comfortable, happy, healthy, enjoying our day and leaving no carbon pawprint.

      We wanted to share our tips with you!

      1. Are you and your dog ready? Make sure you and your dog are prepared for the hike you are undertaking. Not all dogs (or humans for that matter) are suited for 7-8 mile hikes like we enjoy. And we sure didn't start hiking seven miles in the beginning; nope we started with about a mile. Gracie and I are agility dogs and are well conditioned for active, high level fitness, but your dog may not be ready. So be sure and start with short hikes if you've never hiked with your dog, and build to longer hikes.

      2. Pack it up! Mum has a pack that she takes with us on our hikes. Our pack contains everything we need for a fun, healthy and environmentally friendly hike. Here's just a quick list of our pack contents:
      • BPA free bottles of water and bowl if needed
      • Biodegradable poop bags
      • Recycled tissues
      • Camera
      • Cell phone - with our Endomondo hike tracking app and our TrailNote safety hiking app
      • GPS - with satellite connection because we hike in really dense forests on scantily marked trails with no cell signal sometimes
      • Snacks - for us and Mum
      • Vet wrap, alcohol wipes, Traumeel cream, tweezers and spare dog boots or socks for what if
      • Long line - for when we get to go in the river.
      • Trail map
      Some dogs like to take their own packs and we think that's great! Some dogs are suited for carrying packs, and some aren't. Be sure that your dog is prepared for carrying a dog pack; that they are strong enough, can handle the extra weight and are used to carrying a pack. You can gradually get a dog used to wearing a pack by trying it at home first, giving lots of treats when the pack is near, then placed on their back, then strapped, then gradually increase the time your dog wears it around the house. Be sure and give lots of treats as you train them to wear the pack.

      3. Leash up! Hiking trails are unpredictable. You can encounter a wide, wide variety of things on your hike - cliff drop offs, other hikers that may not like dogs, stray and other off leash dogs, deer, squirrels, wild turkeys, snakes and even bears! That's why it's important to stay leashed up. Yes, it's super tempting to let your dog loose on the trail, but it's important to follow the rules and to be safe; most all national and state parks require that your dog is leashed on the trail.

      We have a leash system which we love. Mum has nice, tough and durable harnesses for both me and Gracie, that allow us all kinds of freedom of movement and flexibility. Then we have six foot leather leashes that we've had for well over six years, that we still use today! Mum can have both of us on leash in one hand very securely and even take photos with the other. It's a great system that works well for us. Find a system that works for you for a happier hike!

      4. Keep hydrated! Keeping both your dog and you hydrated on the trail is sooo important. We have a several water containers that we take with us. One of them is stainless steel with a BPA free lid that also acts as a water bowl for me and Gracie. The other two are BPA free Nalgene bottles for Mum and for our refills. At least every mile when it's cooler and more often when it's hotter, we stop for a nice sip of water, and take a little break, check the paws and pads and do a little stretching. Oh and it's a great time to give Mum some licks to thank her for a fun day!

      5. Snacks! Hiking burns a ton of calories, especially if you are out for four to five hours like us on some hikes, climbing up 1000 foot elevation changes. So every few miles or so, Mum will give us a few treats to keep us energized, and she'll snack on some trail mix as well! We have a couple of favorite snacks we like on our hikes - Zukes Mini Naturals and Dr. Harvey's Power Patties; they are both great energy suppliers, and healthy, safe snacks for us.

      6. Pick up the doo! I can't tell you how many times, even on the most remote trails, that we have found the remnants of another dog on the path. So please, please, pick up your dog's doo when you're out hiking. Keep it green and leave no trace! Mum takes some very strong, durable biodegradable bags when we're out hiking, and yes, she adds them to her pack when used; then deposits them either in a trash bin at the end of the trail, or if there isn't one she takes them home with us to add to our dog poo composter.

      7. Watch the temps and the weather! Before we plan a big hike, Mum will check the Weather Channel. Being in the mountains, weather can be a bit unpredictable. Mum wants to make sure it's not going to be too hot or too cold for us and wants to make sure that Gracie and I (and her, of course) are dressed for whatever weather we may encounter.

      I'll never forget one of our favorite hikes last year. It was one day after we had seven inches of snowfall. But the next day it was sunny, 45 degrees and still had about four inches of snow on the ground. We didn't need a warm coat for that day, but Mum did make sure that we stayed out of the creek, because of the icy water. So be prepared! Have your dog wear a dog coat if it's going to be too cold; and delay your hike if it's going to be too hot.

      8. Those enticing waters! Those rivers, lakes and streams can be very enticing to us dogs. First sign of water and I'm wanting iin there! But Mum makes sure to take extra precautions when we're near bodies of water. She only lets us sip out of nice flowing mountain streams in national and state parks where there are no farms or plants nearby; and keeps us out of creeks and ponds that are stagnant.

      Why? Because there can be some really nasty stuff in some of those creeks, ponds and lakes. Everything from checmical run off from farming, to giardia in creeks from other dogs and wildlife. So encourage your dog to drink from the filtered water you bring on your hike, and steer clear of drinking from water sources that are unfamiliar or questionable.

      8. Take breaks! I giggle, because my Mum needs more breaks than I do. She knows, however, what to watch for when we're out hiking and I, or Gracie, may be tiring. What do I do when I'm tiring? Yep, I start lagging (sure doesn't happen very often, but it does on occasion). If I'm not out in front, pulling Mum up and down the trial, that's when she knows I need a good break.

      9. Check the pads! There are all sorts of things you can encounter on a hike, pine needles, broken glass, stickers, small stones, burrs and lots more that can reek havoc with a dog's paws. Mum makes sure to watch us for any slight limping, and when we stop for a water break, she always checks our paws and pads for any foreign material or abrasions.

      10. Body check! After the hike, check for ticks, fleas, burrs, and well, all kinds of things us dogs can get into. After every hike Mum will spread us out on one of our beds in the cabin and start rubbing all over us, checking for anything that's not supposed to be there. But the best part? I get a nice rub down after my hike too! Love those rub downs.

      Have fun!!! The best part of hiking with my Mum and sis Gracie is having fun. No stress, quiet, serene times, great exercise and just being with my pack...we love that! Take the time to have a fun day with your dog, 'cause us dogs can really show you how to have fun!


      Happy Hiking!
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