Once upon a time, I thought that having a short haired dog would mean less grooming, less hair and less shedding. BA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA! What a fool! Oh man, you guys. WHY DIDN’T ANYBODY TELL ME?! My puggle, Kolchak, sheds like it’s his job. I honestly can’t believe this dog isn’t BALD yet. I quickly learned that if I didn’t want to live in a house where there were fur tumbleweeds everywhere and dog hair in, on and around everything, I would have to figure out some shedding solutions for short hair dogs. We’re sharing what works for us.
It’s 8:33 PM and it it’s still about a squillion degrees at Casa de Kolchak.
We are in the throes of a heat wave. It it’s hottest today, it was over 100 degrees. Now, as the sun starts sinking behind the mountains, it’s still 85 degrees. It’s hot. I’m hot. The dogs are hot. The apartment is hot, but nothing is as hot as it has been outside. You guys, it’s too hot to go out there. I just want to hide in the moderate coolness of the house and wait for the heat to subside.
Too bad that, even when it’s hot out, bathroom breaks still have to happen.
Living in an apartment, you don’t have the option to let the dog run out into the yard for a quick potty break. Walks are a necessity and when your dog has got to go, they’ve got to go. You can’t wait until the sun goes down for a bathroom break! The key is to know how to make walking dogs safe on a hot day and we have a few ideas that can help.
Everyone loves barbecue season and a chance to get outdoors and have fun with family and friends, but with all the food and fun, a backyard party can be a dangerous place for a dog. Luckily, there are a few simple things you can do to dog proof your summer BBQ.
Spring has sprung, yo!
So, remember how a few days ago, I shared how I was
totally humiliating celebrating Easter with some DIY Photo props for the dogs?
Of course you do. I mean, really, who could forget seeing this:
Ha ha ha ha ha…lookit how mad Kolchak is. SO MAD! SO SO FUNNY! (Don’t worry, you guys, he was handsomely rewarded for his compliance with this photo shoot. Trust me, if he didn’t think it was worth it, he would never allow these shenanigans.)
Now, with such ridiculously adorable pictures of Kolchak, you don’t really think I would let Felix escape, do you?!
Oh woof no.
I love doing themed photo shoots for every holiday with my dogs, but buying the props and accessories can get pricey. I love making these simple and fun DIY Easter photo props for dogs and having a bit of holiday themed fun.
* * *
Back in February, I shared these pictures of Koly and Fe on the Kol’s Notes Instagram feed.
They look thrilled, right? I tell you guys, I slept with one eye open that night. I was totally afraid that Koly would shank me in my sleep. Not afraid enough though, that I didn’t want to try it again the very next chance I got.
I knew Easter would be the perfect opportunity to create a couple new photo props for dogs and have a little bit of fun at Kol and Fe’s expense.
The good news that I want you to have a little fun at your dog’s expense too. This time around, I’ve created a couple of printable templates, so that you can try this at home. (You totally don’t have to use them, this is so simple that you could drive for you but just in case you’re not feeling very crafty, my templates will take all the guesswork out of it.) It’s so easy to do and it makes a great project for kids and not so crafty people.
Here is what you need:
- 1 sheet of 12 x 12 scrapbook paper
- markers or crayons
How to make your dog an Egg Head in four easy steps:
- Trace an egg shape on three 12 x 12 piece of white scrapbook paper and cut it out (Click here if you want a printable template)
- Decorating your egg with coloured markers or crayons – don’t worry about making it perfect. Part of the charm, is it looking rustic and hand-drawn.
- Cut a hole in the centre of the egg for your dog’s face.
- Place it on your dog’s face and photograph away! (Kol’s Note: Step four may require liberal doses of treats and an incredible amount of patience.)
I mean how could you even resist doing this to your dog? Doesn’t Kolchak look ridiculously adorable?
It would make my whole Easter if you guys would take EggHead photos of your own and share them on our Facebook wall or on Instagram with the hashtag #eggheaddogs
Annnnnd check back one Wednesday because there is NO WAY I would let Felix escape this
insanity holiday fun! He got a DIY photo prop of his own.
Dogs have this special way of being totally uncooperative when we want them to especially behave, don’t they?
It’s like they know we need to get something done and try their hardest to make it difficult as woof. Kolchak wiggles like a worm while I try to dry him off. Felix squirms like he’s being tickled when I dremel his nails. They both dance around like we’re playing a game of keep away when it’s time to brush their teeth. Somethings are just a little harder than they need to be.
Yesterday, some friends and I were chatting and Julie from the Daily Dog Blog, (who has the cutest puppy in the whole world) asked:
Can someone tell me how to get your puppy from chewing & snapping on the towel while you are trying to dry her feet??
Oh puppies, such adorable little pains in the butt! Is there anything they won’t do to squirm away when you’re trying to get something done?
It doesn’t have to be this way. A few years ago, I discovered the secret to distracting your dog and tricking them into standing still.
Holy woof, you guys, it works like a charm. I call it The Peanut Butter Wall
or, you know, a cheese wall, if you happen to prefer it or the “anything smearable” wall, but I’m going to go ahead and say that one doesn’t have a great ring to it and just sounds awkward.
Anytime I need Kolchak to stand still for a moment or two, I smear a thin layer of peanut butter over an easy to clean surface.
Then, while he’s occupied trying to lick the thing clean, I shift into ninja mode and I get things done. I’ve sneakily designed every room in the house with an easy spot to put a peanut butter wall, if needed.
- In the entry way, where we stop to dry off our feet, I’ve hung a full length mirror on the wall. It’s perfect for keeping Kolchak cool while I towel him down.
- In the kitchen, where we wipe the floors and bowls out after meals, a quick smear of fat free cream cheese on the fridge keeps Kol occupied while I disinfect the surfaces. (Since they are raw fed, it’s important they don’t track meat juice all over the house. Gross, man).
- In the bathroom, where we dremel our nails, the side of the tub is the perfect spot to spread some liver paste and in the tub, where we take our bath, the tiled wall works like a charm too.
- In the living room, where I brush Felix’s fur, a bit of canned pumpkin smeared on the siding glass door is enough to distract your dog while you groom.
- In the office, where sometimes you just need to distract your fussy dog, maybe while you finish a quick email or get a blog posted, a bit of peanut butter wiped on the glass front of a picture frame can buy you the minutes you need.
Yes, it may seem a little weird that I have tiny jars of peanut butter hidden all over my house, but I’ve found ways to keep them hidden, but accessible. You never know when you might pick up a picture frame to find some PB behind it or open a drawer and find a tiny jar inside. It’s like a treasure hunt and it’s worth it because the peanut butter wall works.
Do you have any sneaky tricks for getting your dog to keep still? Will you share them with us?
I almost didn’t post this.
It’s not a “real” post, but, something happened this weekend that kind of rocked my world and even though you guys probably already know, I feel like I should tell you. Just in case there are any goofballs out there like me, who are fussing over nothing!
Let me start out by saying that I love our harnesses and I love our coats.… [read more]
Kol’s Note: This post is sponsored by TightVac, but all ideas and opinions expressed in the post are 100% my own. It’s my commitment to you that I will never woof about a product I don’t believe in. All links to Amazon are affiliate links. If you make a purchase, I will receive a small commission (even though the product won’t cost you anything extra). I promise to spend the coin on craft supplies, baking pans and other awesome stuff to share with you guys, deal?
It’s no secret that here at Casa de Kolchak, the dogs love the smelly stuff.
Don’t all dogs, really? I mean, put two things in front of your dog, say a cracker and a piece of liver, and I bet every darn time, they sniff out that liver first. (If they happen to be Kolchak, they’ll snarf up the liver, then make a mad dash for the cracker, just in case you were planning to take it away after he made his choice. I’ve almost lost a finger this way. That guy is like a small furry velociraptor.)
I’m very fussy about what types of treats I will give my dogs on a frequent basis. More often than not, the treats I feel good about giving are meat-based, dehydrated treats.
Around here, we skip the store bought bones that come a bazillion to a box for $2. 75. We shun the soft treats in the zip top bags that are made with sugar and glycerin for $1.00. Don’t even suggest we buy a treat where the first 7 ingredients include 5 grains and something called “meat digest”. Um…what the woof. Gross, man. No, here at Casa de Kolchak, we serve up the good stuff. Bully sticks, tendon pieces, trachea chews, dried sardines, liver, heart and lung bites.
High quality meaty treats drive my dogs wild. Too bad they smell so darn disgusting.
<– This is Kolchak chomping on a piece of pork heart and yes, it does smell every bit as good as it sounds. Not only does he love stinky treats, Kolchak has a crazy good nose. I like to buy my treats in bulk to save a bit of money, but as soon as something smelly and delicious enters the house, this guy knows. He knows and he demands he get to eat one, immediately. He’s demanding little dictator. Still, I can’t have him eating a chew every time he catches the scent. He would always be sitting next to our doggy command centre, where we store our smelly dog treats, crying.
Over the years, I’ve developed a few ways to store smelly dog treats and keep the yuck factor at bay.
Which method I choose depends greatly on just how smelly the treat is, how often I plan to get into the package and how many treats I need to store.
1. Zip Top Bags
Zipper bags are the easiest and least effective way to contain smells. Many modern day baggies are made of this crazy special plastic that is considered “permeable” which means they let the food inside breathe and keep your food fresh. The downside to this is that air can get in, odours can get out. Yuck. I use the wide, double seal bags to minimize this, but still. The smells are escapey.
Best used for: slightly smelly treats like low-odour bully sticks, homemade chicken or turkey jerky and anything that doesn’t make you gag when you put it right under your nose or very short-term storage.
2. Foodsaver Packages
My Foodsaver is one of my VERY favourite Kitchen things. It lets me save food for freezing, it’s great for quickly marinating meats and it’s handy as heck for sealing the odour in with larger volumes of treats. Since the machine vacuum seals the package there’s no air getting in or out, so it’s pretty fabulous at containing odours. However, if your dog is a super smeller like Kolchak, they may still smell odours on the outside of the package. (True story. That nose is nuts.) If your dog has a good nose, wipe down the outside of your vacuum sealed package with white vinegar. It wipes any residual smells off the outside. I love this option because it lays flat for easy, stackable storage.
Best used for: Long-term storage, such as when you buy treats in bulk, when you’re packing to go on a trip and don’t want your suitcase to reek and super smelly treats like bison bully sticks and greasy, smelly trachea chews.
3. Vacuum Seal Containers (aka my fav)
To me, vacuum seal containers give me the BEST of both worlds and they’re my absolute favourite solution. They’re easy and convenient to get in and out of, but they do a much better job at concealing odours than the plastic baggies do. Ever since I discovered the handy PawVac containers made by TightVac last year at SuperZoo, I have been IN LOVE. They’re a lot easier to use than some other brands of vacuum seal containers which need you to have a vacuum sealing machine AND the container.
With the PawVac canisters, you simply fill with your treats, compress the button on the lid, press it into place and you’re done. (If your dog is a super smeller, I might wipe the outside with white vinegar to kill any surface smellies.) When you’re ready to serve up a treat, just compress the button and lift the lid. It’s that easy.
As a side benefit, if you leave these containers sealed, they work just like a vacuum seal package and they’ll keep your treats fresh longer. As a test, I put fresh cookies in each container. One I opened every day for a 10 days (until the cookies spoiled). The other container I left sealed and the cookies lasted longer than a month! Jack pot! They do come in really cute paw print and bone patterns, if you happen to like the doggy theme, but you guys know me. I want a house that is dog-friendly, but doesn’t look “doggy”, so I chose these plain canisters with coloured lids.
What treat does your dog love that you can’t stand the smell of? How do you store it?
Wet leashes are just apart of life with dogs when you live in a wet climate. Living in an apartment, you would drive the neighbours nuts if you had leashes clanging around in the dryer several times a day. Luckily, our dryer solution can help.