Traveling Dog Lady: 2015

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

52 Snapshots of Life; Week 52: Peace

This is my last post for 2015, and my last regular post for a while, going forward.  I am furthering my education beginning in January and taking a break from social media and non-essential internet for a while.

Many thanks to our friends at The Lazy Pit Bull for hosting this photo challenge all year!

This week's theme is PEACE.  I was at the beach for the Christmas holiday, and took a lot of peaceful photos.  This one is my personal favorite of all the photos I snapped last weekend.  Peace on Earth.

Until next time.....  Happy New Year......

Thursday, December 24, 2015

Happy holidays

The dogs made it onto the card this year.

Below are recent photos of the cats, taken this week.  Meow-y Christmas!



In spirit, forever in our hearts, always watching over us:




Mr. Kitty

Love Kitty




[Timba and] the first Charlie (cat).

Last, but far from least, The Dogfather himself, Gil Markle (pictured here with his grandson, a year ago)
I love you more than words can say, & miss you more and more each day.

Saturday, December 19, 2015

52 Snapshots of Life; Week 51: Friend

This is the next-to-the-last post for #52Snapshots, and I want to thank The Lazy Pit Bull for hosting this fun photo challenge blog hop all year.

This week's topic is FRIEND.  I could not have gotten through 2015 without my amazing friend, Cooper.  He is my "comfort dog".  My very own personal service dog, even though he isn't really a service dog.  I have thought about having him trained and certified to be a real service animal, but he is too reactive, so it would be a huge undertaking.  Maybe some day.  Who knows?  For now, he's my very own personal comfort, service dog.... and my very best FRIEND.  His brother, Charlie, is my friend and comfort dog too, but he still has trouble trusting me when I want to hug him or even just touch him.  For instance, he has just recently started putting his head on my lap when we sit near each other!   It's a work in progress.  One does well socially, the other does well privately.

Last weekend, I took a photo of Cooper at the beach.  He had laid down right at the foot of the dunes, on our way back to the house, and I thought to myself, "I remember taking a similar photo of Hobie many years ago."  I had thought they were facing in the same direction, but, in fact, I located the photo of Hobie, and he is facing in the OTHER direction.  Going by memory, I do recall that we had stopped walking in approximately the same place on the beach on both days.  After our walk last weekend, I told Cooper he had been "channeling" Hobie, because he was acting just like him!  Hobie used to refuse to go home, and would lie down in protest.  I'd have to often sit by the side of the road, and drivers would even pull over and ask if he was all right!!  "Yes," I'd say, "He's just refusing to go home."  I always thought they did not believe me.  Well, didn't Cooper pull the same game last weekend?!  Not only did he lie down on the beach in the same pose as Hobie, except facing the opposite way, he also laid down in the parking lot on the way back to the house, and refused to go home.  I had to sit on the pavement with him while people driving past were staring at us wondering WTH was going on!  To top it all off, with him only having three legs, people always think the worst.  No, he's just refusing to go home, because he's having a good time.  Just like Hobie used to do.  So, Cooper channeled Hobie last weekend, and it made me laugh and cry at the same time.

Here are the two matching photos.  The dogs were roughly the same age when these were taken. Cooper is now four years old, and Hobie was five years old in the photo of him taken at almost the exact same spot on the beach, at roughly the same time of year (between Thanksgiving and Christmas) ten years ago.

My friends.

Cooper, December 2015 - 4 years of age, at Nauset Light Beach at the foot of the dunes

Hobie, November 2005 - 5 years of age, at Nauset Light Beach at the foot of the dunes

RIP Hobie 1/6/2000 - 4/25/2015

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Nutrition At Affordable Prices #NaturesRecipe

This post is sponsored by Nature's Recipe and the BlogPaws Professional Pet Blogger Network.  I am being compensated for helping spread the word about Nature's Recipe available at PetSmart, but only shares information we feel is relevant to our readers.  Nature's Recipe and PetSmart are not responsible for the content of this article. 

As I mentioned in a post last month, my pets really enjoy Nature's Recipe® natural dog food and natural cat food, and so do I.  Not only are Nature's Recipe products made with quality nutritionally-vibrant recipes with no artificial colors or preservatives, grain-free formulas, protein-packed and delicious, but their products are the way to go when it comes to the budget-conscious pet parent.  You can give your pet great nutritional benefits without breaking the bank, and you don't have to buy your pet food at the grocery store anymore.  Food purchased in pet stores really isn't too expensive, and will fit into most budgets.  Nature's Recipe is a starter-level food that can provide pets with better quality nutrition at approximately the same price as supermarket pet foods.

Mo-oooom, stop writing and feed me some Nature's Recipe!
(Notice kitty, Newman, on the back porch.)

It's hard to believe that I'm still telling other pet parents about Nature's Recipe, since the company has consistently been providing pets with ideal nutrition drawn from nature's inherent goodness for more than 30 years! They really do craft their recipes to make every ingredient count, thus giving pet owners a step up in pet food nutrition, without a steep step up in cost.  You truly can go natural on a budget.

As far as my dogs are concerned, they aren't senior yet (but wow, does that happen quickly, since apparently "senior" is now defined as above seven years of age).  Nevertheless, I know a lot of parents of senior pets follow my blog, and I am proud to say that all but one or two of my pets have lived well into their teens.  With seniors in mind, I wanted to tell my dog-parent readers that Nature's Recipe offers a line of Life Stages Recipes.  These are tailored specifically to your dog's life stage, from puppy to senior.  I recommend this food based on personal experience:  during the last two years of his life, my beloved Hobie had major food allergies, grain allergies, pancreatitis and tummy issues:  it was Nature's Recipe that kept him fed and healthy during those bad times.  But the best part?  I was able to also feed my other two dogs (who were puppies at the time) Nature's Recipe formula for younger dogs!  I love the limited, natural ingredient recipes.

I never noticed that my kitchen looks like a utility room.  Sigh.

Not to overlook the cat parents (I'm one, too!), the Life Stages Recipes for those of the feline persuasion contain the essential vitamins and minerals your cat needs.

I'm a real person who feeds quality Nature's Recipe food, with great results, to my pets every day (without breaking the bank!).  If that's not a true endorsement, I don't know what is!

So, what are you waiting for?  Next time you're at PetSmart, check out their large stock of Nature'sRecipe pet foods and treats!  You can't go wrong with PetSmart and Nature's Recipe. 

Nice Nature's Recipe display at my local PetSmart!

Follow Nature's Recipe on social media (I do!):

Sunday, December 13, 2015

52 Snapshots of Life; Week 50: Neighbor

When the Nauset Light Preservation Society moved the iconic lighthouse in 1996, my house became Nauset's Neighbor.
This is my neighbor.  "She" keeps watch over us, and her calming and reassuring beacon is a symbol of hope and light.

Week 50!  Only two posts left for The 52 Snapshots of Life photo-theme challenge, hosted by our friends at The Lazy Pit Bull.

Sunday, December 6, 2015

52 Snapshots of Life, Week 49: Bokeh (and a special announcement)

I had no idea what Bokeh was!  Well, it turns out I accidentally Bokeh'd (??) a couple of photos from last week.  I was going to look for an old picture, but I didn't have to!

Admittedly, this is not that great!

So, that's this week's 52 Snapshots challenge photo.  52 Snapshots of life is hosted by our friends at The Lazy Pit Bull.

Special Announcement:  Charlie and Cooper's sister, Tess, has some very talented human parents.  They've published some books, including one titled Tammy Does Boston about Tess's predecessor.   A couple days before Thanksgiving, my local shelter Sweetpea For Animals had a devastating fire that destroyed a building and killed over 40 animals that were awaiting adoption.  Our community is reeling from this loss, and today is a fundraiser (Photos with Santa) to raise money to re-build the shelter.  Tess's parents, Judith and Michael, have offered also to sell their book to raise funds for this important charity as well.

Here's how you can participate:

Go to the Tammy Does Boston website and purchase the book ($14.95).  Afterwards, send me an email at and tell me that you purchased this book to help out the Sweetpea Fund.  For every book sold, Judith and Michael will donate HALF of the cost ($7.50 per book) to Sweetpea.  Please note that this offer is only for U.S. sales and is available now until December 25.

Super-huge thanks to Judith and Michael and Tess (and their other pooch, Tina!) for helping out.

Charlie (seated), sister Tess (standing on four paws); brother Cooper (tripawd!)

Saturday, November 28, 2015

52 Snapshots of Life; Week 48: Thankful

As we near the end of the 52 Snapshots themed photo blog hop challenge, hosted by our amazing friends at The Lazy Pit Bull, I am pleased to say I'm thankful to have been able to spend some time with these two cuties over the holiday weekend!

'at's right, we're 8 months old!

The twins look on in fascination as their first Christmas tree gets decorated by the older kids and the adults.

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

#NaturesRecipe dog food is affordable and easy to find

This post is sponsored by Nature's Recipe and the BlogPaws Professional Pet Blogger Network.  I am being compensated for helping spread the word about Nature's Recipe available at PetSmart, but only shares information we feel is relevant to our readers.  Nature's Recipe and PetSmart are not responsible for the content of this article. 

As I sat down to write this sponsored post today, I received some devastating news about some dear friends of mine in the animal world.  The local shelter that I often support, and whose events I always attend, fell victim to a horrible fire last night, and they lost everything including over 35 animals (both dogs, and cats).  The director of the shelter is a friend, and she took care of my dogs, Hobie and Hector for many years as my number-one pet sitter extraordinaire.  The outpouring from our little, tiny community here has been incredible.  In an effort to help the shelter re-build, I am donating all of the money I will receive as payment for this post to the shelter.  Now, on to the Nature's Recipe/PetSmart post.

My dogs have been eating Nature's Recipe ® for several years now, ever since my beloved Hobie developed a grain allergy. So, unlike some reviewers of this product, I am already using it, and very happily so!  And now, I'm honored to help introduce this product to you and your pet family. If you want to be reassured that Nature's Recipe products are the way to go, then look no further, because I'm here to tell you that they are an affordable option for a better nutrition choice for your pet.

Just ask Cooper, he'll tell you about the delicious nutrition in Nature's Recipe, grain-free natural dog food.
Even though my current dogs, Charlie Brown and Cooper, don't seem to have a grain allergy, I've stuck with Nature's Recipe simply because it's a great product with quality ingredients. 

For over three decades, Nature's Recipe has been committed to providing good nutrition for a pet's healthy, happy life.  Ingredients are derived from nature's inherent goodness.  Nature's Recipe crafts its recipes so that every ingredient counts.  Dog food recipes are crafted to help provide specific nutritional or functional benefits, and they contain no artificial colors or preservatives.  I personally like the fact that there are limited ingredients -- recipes for real life.

Cali wants me to remind you that Nature's Recipe also has a whole line of yummy cat foods that include all the essential vitamins and minerals cats need.  They're protein-packed and include grain-free formulas, just like the dog food!

Nature's Recipe products are available at PetSmart retailers.  Click on the following link to purchase dog food at  

Follow Nature's Recipe on social media (I do!!) :

Sunday, November 22, 2015

52 Snapshots of Life, Week 47: Passion

This year has been the absolute worst, and I had trouble figuring out what I would post for this week's topic, "Passion", since I am not feeling very passionate about anything these days.

But, last week was the dogs' fourth birthday, and we got together with their sister, Tess to celebrate their birthday, on the beach up in gorgeous Gloucester, Massachusetts.

If it were not for these two dogs, I don't know how I would have made it through these last few months.  They are my comfort, my companions, my heart.

I have always loved the Massachusetts coast, and have been visiting the "north shore" (as we call it) and the Gloucester area ever since I can remember.

Two things that I love most of all:  my dogs, and "my" beaches.  So, here we are:  a couple photos from dog birthday party on the beach, year four!

Charlie Brown looks on as Cooper (left) and Tess (right) vie for possession of the ball


52 Snapshots of Life is a themed photo blog hop hosted by The Lazy Pit Bull.

Monday, November 16, 2015

52 Snapshots of Life, Week 46: Veteran

My post is a tad late this week, and I really wanted to match the picture to Veterans Day, because this week's topic was Veteran... but November 11th is also the dogs' birthday (they're four years old now!!); and I sort of got sidetracked.

Without further delay, here (above) is my favorite veteran, and his favorite gal [that would be, my parents, in case you didn't know].  My father served in WWII in the 15th U.S. Army.  He wrote to my mother every single day, and I have all of his letters.  You can see some of the letters in my books:  available here on Amazon

52 Snapshots of Life is a photo challenge blog hop hosted by our friends at The Lazy Pit Bull.  Only six weeks remain in 2015!

Thursday, November 12, 2015

PL360 Supplements for Dogs Product Review and #Giveaway

This is a sponsored post for PL360 supplements.  I have received a two-month supply of supplements in exchange for this product review, but no monetary compensation.  PL360 is also providing a giveaway to three of my readers/followers of the product I am reviewing.  Contact me if questions:

A few weeks ago, I received an inquiry from the folks at PL360, asking if I would try their all-natural supplements with my dogs and write a review.  I no longer do product reviews with payment in product only (in other words, that doesn't pay the bills!), but I made an exception because a giveaway to three of my readers was also offered.  Hoping some of you out there would like a free supply of PL360's Arthogen Hip & Joint Formula for active dogs.  If so, just comment on this post right here on the blog (you may need to input a captcha code so Blogger knows you're not a robot!).

My "boys" Charlie Brown and Cooper just celebrated their fourth birthday yesterday!  They are still young, and the description "active" may be pushing the envelope a bit.  These hound-mixes are much less "active" than my previous dogs who were all Labs or Lab-mixes.  For example, Charlie sleeps most of the day (20-22 hours a day just about) but then will run at high-speed after a squirrel or a neighbor walking a dog past the house (safely separated by our wonderful fence, I might add!).  Because he is a large dog, pushing 90 pounds, but still tall and lanky, I do worry about his joints.

Charlie "treeing" a squirrel in classic Walker Coonhound style

Cooper, on the other hand, also sleeps all day, but is disabled (shhhh, please don't mention that word in his presence!).  With his single front leg, there is a lot of "slamming" of the leg onto hard surfaces such as pavement outside, ceramic tile and hardwood inside, and running up and down the back deck stairs at high-speed, jumping onto and off of furniture (yeah, he's allowed).  He is still so young that he runs just as fast as his brother, and that concerns me because his shoulder joint must get incredibly sore with all that slamming.

I've had a lot of experience with aging dogs and their joint problems, but I was interested to see how these all-natural supplements would work on The Boys.

Timba, above, and Hobie, below both had arthritis in their senior years.

The first day, Charlie, typically, was averse to anything foreign and new being put into his mouth.  I usually give out supplements like treats, so I had him sit at the treat counter in the kitchen.  He, of course, spit it out onto the floor and had to smell it and investigate it before chewing or swallowing.  He ended up walking away that first time, and Cooper scooped up Charlie's serving.  Cooper, by the way, gobbled it right up, no questions asked, no hesitation.

After a couple of days, Charlie decided he could trust me, and now has been enjoying his daily dole of the supplement each day.  I give them each two tablets per day at "treat time".

Give us treats!  Give us treats!

The hip and joint formula contains glucosamine, chondroitin, vitamin C, manganese, beef flavor, brewers years, cheese flavor and a couple of other ingredients I'm not 100% thrilled about, but at least they are few (silicon dioxide and xanthan gum just to name two).  The latter are inactive ingredients, incidentally.

Since my dogs do not have current joint issues, I am using this product more as a preventative than a treatment.  The first few days, I did think that they seemed to have more energy after their daily dole!  They were running around the house doing zoomies* and so forth.  But that could just be a feature of the time of year (less outdoor time, more indoor time as fall and winter descend).  Nevertheless, they certainly were not held back from romping around the house doing zoomies for 15 minutes!  So, I'd say that's a mark in favor of PL360's product.

All in all, I would recommend this product.  The folks I've communicated with at PL360 have been personable and professional, so that's a big plus, too (a lot of times it's the people behind the brand that makes the brand appealing!).

PL360's products can be purchased at Entirely Pets and !!

Don't forget about that giveaway!  If you're a reader who has an active dog and want to support their hips and joints with a pretty good product, just comment below.  The first three to post a comment containing the word "giveaway" will get a free bottle of PL360 Arthogen Hip & Joint Formula.

*This video is from 2014.

Saturday, November 7, 2015

52 Snapshots of Life; Week 45: Fall

A very unusual fall here in Massachusetts, with "beach" weather for the past 10 days....

Cape Cod National Seashore -- autumn sunset over Nauset Marsh and Nauset Beach
at the intersection of Eastham and Orleans

This post is part of the 52 Snapshots of Life blog hop, hosted by our pals at The Lazy Pit Bull.