Friday, December 6, 2013

Santa Paws is Coming to Town!

Love on a Leash Trusted Dog Care is hosting a dog-friendly fundraiser with net proceeds donated to Paws for Hope and Rescue a Boxer.

The event will take place Saturday and Sunday, Dec 14th and 15th from 11 a.m. until 4 p.m. at Tisol on Grandview Highway.

Renowned pet photographer, Angie Wojciechowska, of Off-Leash Photography will be on hand to capture professional portraits of beloved pets with Santa Claus himself, amid a winter wonderland backdrop, complete with festive holiday décor and a pooch friendly Santa on his throne.

The two days will feature delectable baked goods and mulled cider for the humans and lots of doggy treats and socialization for the pooches while raising funds and awareness for two local animal organizations.

Special gift bags to the first 50 photos each day, a raffle with great prizes to help raise funds, and lots of “mixing and mingling” to get you into the holiday spirit. $20.

Holiday Safety Tips for Your Pet

The biggest safety hazard consistently witnessed by petsitters during the holidays is a pet’s access to dangerous materials in the home that can be easily ingested.
Other hazards noted were electrical appliances left on in the home, a pet’s access to dangerous plants, holiday food and decorations and issues related to weather.
Some of the most frequently recommended cautions are:
Holiday treats, such as rich, fatty scraps, bones from pork and poultry, alcoholic beverages, chocolate and other sweets and candies can be harmful or toxic to pets.
Pine tree water can be poisonous, so be sure to cover open tree stand bases. The tree should be secure to the wall with strong wire or twine because a toppling tree can cause serious injuries to dogs and cats.
Keep these poisonous holiday plants away from pets: the berries of the mistletoe, holly, hibiscus, Christmas roses and the poinsettia.
Many holiday decorations are hazardous to pets. If decorations are not pet-friendly, keep them, as well as lights, out of a pet’s reach.  House fires increase considerably during holidays.
Remember, the most common pet-related emergency that occurs over the holidays is the consumption of human pharmaceuticals. Make sure all prescription and non-prescription drugs are safely stored.

Six Holiday Foods Your Dog Should Never, Ever Eat

Make sure you keep heartache out of the season of joy. While there are some wonderful and yummy festive treats available for your dog, there are several foods associated with the holidays that you should never let your pooch eat. Even if your dog begs and tells you with every fibre in his being that this food is okay, in this instance it’s important to remember that you know better and keep these foods well and truly away!

1. Cooked Meat and Bones
This is an easy one to overlook. After all, dogs are meateaters, right? Wouldn’t they be eating meat and bones in the wild? Wrong! While they would be finding raw bones, cooked ones are not part of the natural dog’s diet. Cooked bones can splinter and can cause internal damage. While many meats associated with the holidays are too rich for the average dog whose system is used to being fed commercial dog food.

2. Nutmeg
While it would take a lot of nutmeg to actually kill your dog, little is known about why nutmeg is so very toxic to canines. And since this spice is found in so many human holiday treats, this is one to be aware of.

3. Onions
This is another one that ends up being in a whole lot of holiday foods. Equally dangerous to dogs cooked or raw, your dog must avoid them at all times of the year!

4. Raw Bread Dough
While the dough itself isn’t toxic, the yeast can expand and cause all kinds of intestinal distress in your pet. Yes: even death. Keep your dog away from pizza and bread-making activities!

5. Sage
Sage is another one that isn’t necessarily toxic in the dangerous sense but should still be avoided. It contains essential oils that might cause some stomach upset for your pooch. It can also cause central nervous system depression. Better to avoid it than take chances.

6. Grapes
Okay: grapes are not a holiday food, but they are so bad for your dog and this is one of the lesser known ones, that we thought we’d reiterate. Never, ever, ever let your dogs have grapes! They are entirely indigestible to canine stomachs.

Have a happy and healthy holiday!

Thursday, December 5, 2013

The 12 Days of CHRISTMAS…. Great Gifts for your Dog this Holiday Season!

Who can resist an adorable little sweater or coat for their dogs, plus all dogs adore treats -- what dog doesn’t?

This Christmas I will give my kidlets sweaters and coats (really for me) and treats and toys (really for them) from a variety of wonderful retailers in Vancouver and the Lower Mainland who offer such a fabulous selection of fun, adorable & unique things for your pooch!

1) Three Dog Bakery carries bath products that are fur-tas-tic, including products by Fresh Dog, Dermagic, Earthbath and Buddy Wash. The smells are delicious (lots of peppermint, oatmeal and vanilla), the products are fabulous and the prices are great, too! There are also dental products to keep your dog’s teeth sparkling and breath fresh, by Kissable Dental, are also available at Three Dog Bakery in Vancouver & Port Moody.

2) A new dog bed is always the perfect gift.  Bowser dog beds, available at Bowwow Haus, are super stylish and contemporary beds made of upholstery grade fabrics in dozens of fabric options. Durable, comfortable, completely washable and best of all, Canadian made! Self warming, round, comfy sleeper beds by K&H are fashionable and super snuggly for your pooch and available at a Tisol location.

3) “Muttlucks” and “Paws” booties to protect your dog’s precious paws. With winter creeping up on us, these little boots save doggys’ feet from the salt and chemicals used to de-ice the sidewalks. The “Paws” reusable disposable booties, which look like balloons, are available at Barking Babies. Other paw-saving bootie types and styles are available online and at various locations throughout Vancouver and the lower mainland.

4) Slip a most “pupular” peanut butter personalized stocking cookie, wrapped and ready to go with a gift tag, into your dog’s stocking. Three Dog Bakery has been capturing the hearts & tummies of people and their canine companions since 1989. All baked goods are carefully crafted to ensure the best quality for your loyal friend. This outfit is known for fresh-baked personalized celebration cakes, as well as dog treats and cookies, but they also carry great packaged specialties like Puppermint Mocha, Snickerdoodles and Star Wafers 2-pack gift sets. This dog bakery always gets two paws up!

5) Barking Babies in Yaletown has the best selection of “High Fashion-Haute Couture” coats and sweaters like no one else in this city! For the ooh-La-La and wow factor head over to Barking Babies for cashmere sweaters by Louis Dog, around the world fashion ensembles by Touchdog, leather jackets by Hip Doggy and NHL Sports Jerseys.

6) Professional Pet Portraits by Angie Wojciechowska, of Off-leash Photography, who has made a name for herself as Vancouver’s premier pet photographer. She is amazing at capturing your beloved dog on film! Angie has a huge soft spot in her heart for dogs and cats and would love to help you capture your beloved pooch as an everlasting keepsake. From personal experience, I promise that you will never regret spending the time and money to have professional photos taken of your dog. The photos I hold closest to my heart, two years after my own gal passed away, were taken by Angie. Gift certificates are available.  Contact her at

7) RC Pet Products, carried at Tisol Stores throughout Vancouver, manufacture the best selection of functional & stylish canine outerwear.  The coats and raincoats protect your pet from inclement weather while looking great with styles aptly titled “West Coast Rainwear,” “Yaletown Slicker” and “Robson Rainwear.” Many are fleece-lined or PVC-coated and are waterproof which is mandatory on the west coast. Their matching leashes and collars come in a spectacular assortment of eye catching colors and patterns which are fun, fashionable and affordable.  Tisol also carries an excellent assortment of packaged treats and goodies to stuff your dogs’ stockings at reasonable prices!

8) TOYS. TOYS, TOYS!! We love the retro dog toys available these days. Tisol and Bowwow Haus have plush versions of “Where’s Waldo,” “Lambchop” and “Mr. Bill” Squeaky Toys. Bigger dogs need tougher toys. Try the Kong Brand of toys guaranteed to survive your dog’s rough play available at Tisol. Plush puzzle toys that engage your dog's natural instincts to search, stalk and capture are de rigueur. Find a selection of these toys at Bowwow Haus and help challenge and develop your dog’s problem-solving skills while keeping them entertained for hours! Finally, award-winning, durable PrideBites dog toys come in a variety of fun designs & they float, making them an ideal toy for dogs who love water...available at Bowwow Haus on East Broadway.

9) Fruitables “Love life Together,” Calorie Smart Dog Treats are 100% natural and contain delicious, healthy ingredients like pumpkin, banana, apple, cranberry, organic oatmeal, pearl barley, cinnamon and molasses. A great little stocking stuffer for your pooch, these are available at Woof, Tisol, Bowwow Haus and Barking Babies in Vancouver and Uptown Dawg Spa in Port Moody.

10) Lampe Berger Products, invented in Paris in 1898 to purify the air in hospitals, still remain the best in fragrance and purification for your indoor environment (read: doggy smells) using its patented catalytic diffusion system. These lovely lamps and fragrances are available in many styles and scents to complement any home! A perfect holiday hostess gift and available exclusively at Bowwow Haus’ West Broadway location.

11) Created especially for dogs, Vancouver designed and manufactured, ZUKA Pooch collar jewellery uses only the best quality Swarovski crystals, Czech glass and pewter components.  ZUKA Pooch Charms are available in two styles, flower and paw print,  and are purely fun for the fashionista in your pooch. These delightful sparkly collar charms sell for $10 with $2 from every sale to be donated to Vancouver animal charity, Paws for Hope. ZUKA Pooch is for the dog about town, one who loves to stand out and be noticed. They are available at Love on a Leash's Santa Paws is Coming to Town Event at Tisol Grandview on Dec 14th and 15th or via

12) Bruno spike dog food bowls.  These gorgeous cast aluminum bowls come in two sizes (small and large) and feature removable stainless steel inserts for easy cleaning, and will compliment the décor in every home! Available at Bowwow Haus on East Broadway.

Monday, December 2, 2013

Holiday Dog Cookie Recipe: Salivatin’ Cinnamon Apple Nips

Christmas never tasted so good! For your dog, that is.

These Salivatin’ Cinnamon Apple Nips are from the Cooking the Three Dog Bakery Way: “Now the furry little apple of your eye will have yet another reason to love you.”

The book is by Mark Beckloff and Dan Dye, Broadway Books and it’s a good one. Here’s a holiday dog treat recipe that your dogs will love and that makes the whole house smell terrific!

Apples and whole oats are sweetened with a touch of honey and a sprinkle of cinnamon that will definitely get your pooch’s full ears-up attention.  They make a great reward for your pup just for being so darn cute!

Salivatin’ Cinnamon Apple Nips
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup quick rolled oats
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. cinnamon
½ cup canola oil
1/3 cup honey
2 eggs
1 cup cored & diced apple
Preheat oven to 350 F.  Grease two baking sheets with nonstick vegetable spray.

Stir together the flour, oats, baking powder and cinnamon in a bowl and set aside.  In a large bowl, stir together the oil and honey until well blended.  Add the eggs, one at a time, stirring to combine.  Add the dry ingredients to the egg mixture and stir to form a smooth dough. Fold in the apples.

Drop the dough by the rounded teaspoonful, 1-1/2 inches apart, on the baking sheets. Bake for 12 to 15 minutes, or until golden.

Cool to room temperature before serving.

Store in an airtight container for up to 1 week, or wrap well and freeze for up to 2 months.  (Thaw before serving.)