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Wednesday Winner: The Dog Who Healed a Family

July 21, 2010 Leave a comment

This week’s Wednesday Winner is a book. A really good one.

It’s called, “The Dog Who Healed a Family: And Other True Animal Stories That Warm the Heart and Touch the Soul”.

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Written by Jo Coudert, The Dog Who Healed a Family, is a collection of short stories exploring the relationship between people and their pets. Sometimes funny, sometimes sad, and, often times, inspirational, The Dog Who Healed a Family is an easy read. As a busy small business owner, I was able to pick it up, read one story, and come back later to read another.

While all the stories are well-written and interesting, a few really captured my heart:

The Puppy Express – I won’t lie. This one had me tearing up. It is at once heartbreaking and heartwarming. A family’s elder dog must find a way home across immeasurable odds. It will renew your faith in the power of people and what they can do when they work together.
I Love You, Pat Meyers – Bird videos can be quite funny to watch, especially when they mimic us silly humans. This story is no different. Pat and her bird, Casey, become quite the pair after Pat becomes laden with an illness and the after-affects. I dare you to not laugh out loud at this story. I did. Several times.
An Experiment in Love – This is a wonderful story about a woman, named Livy, who chooses to give a kitten (Boston) a little more love and attention than the others in the litter. Read and see what happens. A hint? Love is a mighty, powerful thing.
The Pig Who Loved People – People often think of cuddly cats and dogs when they think of a pet, but Pigger proves that pets can come in all shapes and sizes. A great story about an amazing pig and how he used his smarts to impress.
The Good Shepherd – An amazingly touching story about a mom and a shepherd named Grizzly who brought light and joy to the lives of many a sick child. Who knew this was the beginnings of the Good Shepherd Association? Truly a beautiful story.

I also loved Jo’s exploration of people’s pure love for pets and their pure love for us in the Afterword. Her thoughts on why we love our pets so much are “right on” in my book!

That’s why this week’s Wednesday Winner is The Dog Who Healed a Family by Jo Coudert.

Wednesday Winner: Minnehaha Falls Off-Leash Dog Park

June 30, 2010 6 comments

This week Wednesday Winner is going local… as in Minnesota local.

I’ve always been a frequent user of another dog park (name not given because I kind want to keep it a secret), but recently I decided to give the Minnehaha Falls Off-Leash Dog Park a try. It was a hot and humid day and the dogs needed a little water time. Luckily, Minnehaha Falls has a plenty of that!

Located off of 54th Street and Hiawatha in Minneapolis, Minnehaha Falls Off-Leash Dog Park is spectacular. It’s huge, deeply wooded and runs along the Mississippi River. It has tons of trails, beaches (when it doesn’t rain for days on end) and water to spare. My dogs absolutely love it!

You need a permit to use the park, but it’s well worth it for the fun your dogs will have playing in the water or running along the trails.

Daisy, Jasper and I usually spend about 2 hours just playing along the beach. Jasper’s favorite activity is chasing the waves (a typical herding dog) – he really does think he’s going to catch one! Daisy never learned to swim, but she loves to wade in the water and dip her snout in it.

Check out some of the photos and videos below.

So this week’s Wednesday Winner is the Minnehaha Falls Off-Leash Dog Park!

Crazy Jasper Chasing the Waves

Wednesday Winner: The KONG Wobbler

June 9, 2010 Leave a comment

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A couple of months ago, I was exploring various interactive toys for my client newsletter and came across an ad for a new KONG product: the Wobbler. I already had a rolling treat ball at home that Jasper (my Sheltie) absolutely loved, but I wondered if he would like the Wobbler too.

He does! And, so does Daisy!

The Wobbler works just like the Weeble-Wobble toys from when I was a kid. There is sand in the bottom that keeps the toy grounded but allows your dog to tip it to get the treats out of the hole on the side. What I like about this toy is how easy it is to fill with treats and clean up afterwards. And, my dogs really do love it.

The first time I placed the Wobbler on the floor, Jasper backed away, uncertain of what this new thing was and what he was supposed to do with it. But once I showed him how it worked, he was busy pushing it around, knocking it over and pawing at it.
Now, before I leave the house for the day, I fill it with his kibble (or special treats) and leave it on the floor for him and Daisy (my Lab). I never know where I am going to find it when I get home, but that’s part of the fun! I’ve found it in the bathroom (behind the toilet!), under a chair, under the entertainment center, at the top of the basement stairs, in my bedroom, etc. It’s now become a game to guess where I will find it next! Clearly, it is a very popular toy with my dogs.

That’s why the KONG Wobbler is this week’s Wednesday Winner!

Wednesday Winner: Animoto

June 3, 2010 Leave a comment

It’s a little late here on this Wednesday eve, but I wanted to recognize a very cool internet-based company that has been instrumental in growing my pet sitting business. Today’s Wednesday Winner is Animoto!

Animoto allows users to produce some really cool and unique music videos in a matter of minutes using your very own pictures, video and music. What I love about Animoto is that it allows me to create some really awesome videos for my clients (whose pets stay with me while they are away on vacation) for a really reasonable price. My clients love them and I love sharing them with them!

Clients love to see their pets having fun while they are gone, and it’s a great tribute to their pet that they can keep and share with friends. What better way to show how much fu their pet had while they were away?

But, what’s also awesome about Animoto is that is really, really simple. Upload your photos and video, review, add music and wait for Animoto to produce it in just a few minutes! Have a graduation coming up? Create a video you can share. Took a really cool vacation? Use Animoto’s water background to create a cool video to share with your friends- better than watching a slideshow in someone’s basement! Here are some sample videos for you to check out.

I’ve included a few of my own client videos to show you what I mean. Feel free to check them out.

Belle, Marley and Jasper (Jasper is my dog, the Sheltie)
Noah and Sophie

Then, go to Animoto and sign up! You won’t regret it!

Wednesday Winner: SarahBeth Photography

May 13, 2010 2 comments

In addition to being a lover of animals I happen to have a passion for photography. There are a few photographers whose work I absolutely love!

One of them is SaraBeth Photography in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Sarah Ernhart is simply amazing. She gets shots of people’s pets that make you ask, “How’d she do that?” I would love to know!

I highly recommend you check out her many photos here. By the way, that cute little guy on the right? That’s Ozy, my Boston Terrier client. Isn’t he adorable? She caught his personality perfectly! Click on the html link below him and take a look at the amazing pics.

And, check out her blog – one of the most touching ones I have ever read is here.

If you are Ohhhing and Ahhhhing after looking at her photos, then you know why she just HAD to be this week’s Wednesday Winner.

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