Monday, August 31, 2009

Grreeat Birthday Recipe: Ma Snax Carob, Carrot & Calendula Cake for Dogs

Our Twitter friend & paw pal @pennysnax, spokesdog for Ma Snax tweeted us over a droolworthy secret recipe to share. Ma Snax is not only known for making wonderful, healthy, all natural & organic treats but have a huge tail wagging following from sharing their wonderful recipes. Here is a delicious Ma Snax Carob, Carrot & Calendula Cake for Dogs that would be a big hit at any bark-day party or celebration. So, get on your aprons & out your oven mitts and have some fun. Ready, set, bake!

Ma Snax Carob, Carrot & Calendula Cake for Dogs


Makes one 9-inch cake or 6 cupcakes


1/3 cup vegetable oil

2 cups grated fresh carrot

2 large whole cage-free eggs

1 cup organic all purpose flour

¼ cup brown sugar or honey

2 TBL carob powder

2 TBL organic flax meal or seeds

2 Tbl dried organic Calendula flowers

1 TSP ground cinnamon

¼ TSP salt

1 TSP baking powder

1 TSP baking soda

Optional: ¼ cup unsweetened carob chips


Preheat oven to 325º

Grease and flour cake pan to prevent sticking

Using a stand mixer with paddle attachment or hand mixer, beat eggs with oil and sugar [or honey] until well mixed.

Mix in grated carrots.

Sift dry ingredients together and add. Do not over mix.

Fold in carob chips if using.

Bake for 20 to 30 minutes or until center springs back when pressed.

Cool and decorate. Shop for eco-friendly, all natural & organic goodies for your new furry family member. We carry a great selection of Odor Free Bully Sticks / Dog Treats / and Dog Toys !

Hosting a Dog Birthday Party Celebration: Party Idea & Tips!

Like many of you, we view our four-legged friends as our children & part of the family. The one thing we love doing as pet owners is throwing party bashes in honor of our furry companions by inviting some of his canine friends & their owners.

You can throw a creative & fun party for your dog for just about about any occasion! Here are some hosting party planning tips to celebrate any dog's birthday (bark-day), the new arrival of a pet, or just to say "I love you" to a pampered dog or cat.

1. Select a Dog friendly location.
When deciding on a location for your dogs bark-day party or celebrations its important that the space is accommodating. If you haven't already guessed dogs love room to play & take a time out from their party pals. So choose a party location that allows you & your dogs paw pals to run, rough-house, ample space to take a party break & relax from the pack, room to chase balls & play fetch. But most importantly an area that is safe for pets to explore without fear of dog escaping, running away and leaving the festivities to early without a guardian. If you are having the party in your backyard make sure the area is fenced away from traffic.

The location should also be an easy clean for those accidental spills & potty break moments. Usually, if it isn't kid friendly than it isn't dog-friendly. It is important that if you are hosting the event at your home that it is dog proof, so time for some quick spring cleaning. Dogs love to explore & chew on anything within paws reach so make sure small items are off the floor, clear your coffee tables of precious family heirlooms that an exuberant tail may accidentally sweep off & break. Remember dogs are scavengers love to sniff through your personal belonging. Make sure medicine, cleaning products, mouse traps or snacks that are not safe for pets are put safely away. Before we forget that includes checking in between the couch cushions & under the recliner.

With so many dogs in close proximity there is a possibility of paw pals fighting over the last dog biscuits. If hosting a dog party in your home or outside, make sure there are at least two rooms or spaces available to separate dogs and give them time outs.

Always be prepared just in case bad rain decides to crash your party unannounced, even though the forecast was for clear skies. If you're going to be outside, make sure there is an inside or covered option just in case it starts raining cats & dogs.

2. Fun Activities & Games. Plan some activities for your excited party guest to get the party started. Although most dogs will just have fun with each other naturally. But it would help to break the ice if you get things started by tossing a ball, providing a soccer ball, or making sure there are interesting things for curious dogs to investigate. Our interactive eco toys like our Zisc, hurley's, hucks & hemp rope toys are great fun for any dog & human party goer. Make sure you enough toys for each pup to play with to prevent an ugly scene.

Here are some game ideas:

1. Bring enough balls so there are at least one ball per doggy guest and play free-for-all fetch.
2. Create a dog-and-owner "agility" course. Rent or create a homemade agility course equipped with tunnels for the dogs to race through; make sure you have lots of training bits or other treats to offer them when they run through successfully!
3. Bobbing for biscuits. Fill a small tub or child's pool with water, throw some biscuits in, he who gets them out fastest wins!
4. Dog Biscuit Scavenger hunt. Each dog with their guardian have to hunt for hidden dog treats, whatever duo finds the most (without eating them first) wins!
5. Hold a multi-round fetching race for the dogs and their owners. The dog who fetches the ball the fastest wins!
6. Make the pet's birthday party a costume party! Party guests will love an excuse to dig out those adorable dog Halloween costumes for the event, which can include pet costume contests for the best dog costume, most unique dog costume or the cutest dog costume.
7. Host a cake eating contest! Instead of just feeding the dogs a slice of the birthday dog's cake, turn it into a fun contest, with the winner receiving a batch of homemade pet treats, organic & all natural dog biscuits or our droolworthy odorless, odor free, all natural & free range bully sticks.

3. Remember Safety First.

-With so many dogs to tend to you can't do alone so having each dogs perspective parent present is a good idea to keep the peace among the pack.
-Have your pet first aid kit well stocked.
-Make it clear which treats are the human ones (and they're not reachable by the dogs) and which ones are for the doggies since chocolate is toxic to dogs.
-Make sure that various snacks and human food (grapes, chocolate) scraps have been picked up.
-Make sure that someone can't accidently let dogs out the front door or the backyard gate. Beware to double check to make sure gate isn't left unlatched.
-Make sure that you have one of everything for each dog. Some dogs don't like to share (water bowls, balls, frisbees). Creating resource shortages can provoke fights. So get one for each dog (and then it can go into a gift back after the party to take home).

4. Provide lots of Water. Always have some in multiple bowls.

5. Clean up Waste and Accidents Immediately. Make sure there are biodegradable bags available and obvious to people as they enter so that they take a few for pick ups. Make it clear where waste bags go.

6. Set Some party rules & guidelines.
--Make it clear before the party or gathering what is and is not appropriate. For instance, are some parts of the house "off-limits"? Is all digging in the backyard prohibited?
--If you expect everyone to introduce their dog slowly (to manage the stress and energy level) than make that clear up front.

7. Alert neighbors! If you have a boisterous barking bunch of party pups, let your neighbors know to expect some barking for a brief period.

8. Take plenty of photos or hit record! One great way for you and your dog to look back on fond memories is through candid photos and video. Break our your camera or camcorder and encourage others to do the same. Shop for eco-friendly, all natural & organic goodies for your new furry family member. We carry a great selection of Odor Free Bully Sticks / Dog Treats / and Dog Toys !

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Made With Love: Delicious Dog Birthday Cake Recipe

Does your dog have a Birthday or should we say Bark-day around the corner. Well your dog will love blowing out the candles on these delicious birthday recipes with the main ingredient being love, compliments of our friends at lovetoknow.

Bow Wow Beef & Bacon Birthday Cake
What dog can resist the delicious combination of beef and bacon?

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.


  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2/3 cup butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 jar of strained beef baby food
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup bacon bits


  • Stir flour and baking powder together in a mixing bowl.
  • Cream together the butter, oil, baby food and eggs.
  • Mix dry ingredients with the wet mix, and then stir in the bacon bits.
  • Pour into a greased and floured 8" x 8" baking pan.
  • If desired, sprinkle a light layer of bacon bits on top as a frosting substitute.
  • Bake in a 350 degree F oven for approximately 35-40 minutes or until the center of the cake springs back when lightly poked. Oven times may vary.

Canine Carob & Carrot Cake

Here is a naturally sweet dog birthday cake recipe that satisfies the chocolate-loving hound's taste buds without risking the toxicity from natural chocolate.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.


  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/3 cup butter, softened
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla (Optional)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup shredded carrots
  • 1/2 cup carob chips (Easily available at your local health food store)


  • Mix dry ingredients.
  • Cream together the butter, oil, eggs and optional vanilla.
  • Stir in carrots and carobs.
  • Pour batter into a well-greased 8"x 8" square or 8-inch round baking pan. Bake for approximately 35 minutes or until a knife inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean. Baking time may vary in your oven.

Well, now that your dog has chosen his or her birthday cake of choice all that is missing is the frosting. So to avoid sugary frosting here are some frosting substitutes below or you can serve without it.

  • Cream cheese: Well whipped cream cheese is quite spreadable and tasty too. Just be sure to refrigerate the cake when you're finished decorating.
  • Plain yogurt: Yogurt makes a healthy cake topping, and the plain variety compliments just about any cake flavor. Due to its consistency, yogurt is best used on a birthday cake you plan to leave in the pan. Again, be sure to refrigerate.
  • Peanut butter: Most dogs love peanut butter, and the creamy consistency makes this a natural choice for a frosting substitute. Just be certain your dog doesn't have any kind of peanut allergy before you give it a try. You can also blend a little peanut butter into cream cheese for added flavor and color.

Be sure your cake is completely cool before frosting. Bone appetit'!.

Below are some pictures of @lola_eco_dog turning 2 years old! Shop for eco-friendly, all natural & organic goodies for your new furry family member. We carry a great selection of Odor Free Bully Sticks / Dog Treats / and Dog Toys !

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Veterinarian 101: Pet Owner Tips on Choosing the Perfect Vet for Your Pet!

We all love our pets and that means making sure they go for yearly vet visits. Besides yourself, your vet is probably the next important person in their life. With that said it is important to do your research before hand to make sure your pet is seeing a trusted, caring & certified veterinarian. Remember going to the vet can be stressful for any pet, so picking the right vet is important. Here are some tips for choosing the right vet for your pets needs.
  1. 1. Get Friendly Recommendations! Ask someone you trust for a recommendation. Advertisements supply information about services offered, but a personal recommendation from friends, family & other pet owners is best.

    2. Set up appointment. Call ahead to make an appointment for a visit to meet the veterinarian, vet specialist and the staff. It important that the vet & staff can engage with your pet.

    3. Tour the facility. Its important that the practice is clean, tidy, relaxed & friendly professional atmosphere that promotes good pet health. The staff should be eager to answer your questions and give you a tour. You can tell a lot by the receptionist & observing the waiting room to see if the vet office is run in an organized & smooth fashion.

    4. Find out whether the veterinarian belongs to professional organizations, is affiliated with local humane societies and emergency clinics and provides referral services when needed.

    5. Ask questions about your pet's care, paying close attention to the answers. These responses are key to making certain you have the right person for the job.

    6. Request to visit the animal care wards and kennel areas; these should be squeaky clean, odor-free, warm, dry and comfortable at all times - no exceptions!

    7. Choose a veterinary clinic that allows you to see the same doctor during each visit so that he or she will become familiar with you and your pet, and vice versa.

    8. Make an appointment to take your pet for a get-acquainted visit. Observe how the veterinarian and staff interact with you and your pet.

    9. All veterinarians who practice in the United States must be graduates of an accredited school of veterinary medicine and must have a current license on display.

    10. Make sure to ask about fees, hours, what vet specialist (behaviorist, dermatologist, geriatrics) & services they provide such as x-ray, surgery, dental work, laboratory tests or ultrasound. Ask if these procedures are done at the practice or do you need to go elsewhere for that treatment?

    11. Remember to trust you & your dogs instincts when choosing your family vet, because your pet should have a say in the matter.

  2. Shop for eco-friendly, all natural & organic goodies for your new furry family member. We carry a great selection of Odor Free Bully Sticks / Dog Treats / and Dog Toys !

Friday, August 21, 2009

How can you Help Your Pet Sitter? Heres A Pet Owner To-Do List & Responsibilites

Now that you have hired the right pet sitter to tend to your furry companion while you are away. There are a few simple things you can do to ensure your pet sitter can adequately perform their duties to keep your home & pet safe. So, to help we have compiled a to-do list.

1. Make reservations with your pet sitter early, especially during holidays.
2. Ensure your pet is well socialized and allows strangers to handle him.
3. Place current identification tags on your pet's collar.
4. Maintain current vaccinations for your pet.
5. Leave clear instructions detailing specific pet-care responsibilities and emergency contact information, including how to reach you and your veterinarian.
6. Leave everything needed for the care of your pet in one, visible area so the sitter doesn't have to search for leashes, food cans, toys, medicine & vaccination records.
7. Buy extra pet supplies in case you're away longer than planned.
8. Leave a key with a trustworthy neighbor as a backup, and give him and your pet sitter each other's phone numbers. Be sure those extra keys work before giving them out.
9. Notify neighbors that a pet sitter will be visiting your house while you are away so they don't worry when a strange person shows up at your house.
10. Show the pet sitter your home's important safety features such as the circuit breaker and security system.
11. Buy extra food and litter to keep on hand in case you are gone longer than planned.
12. Clean up dirty dishes before you leave and remove food from the kitchen which may spoil.
13. Put away items or chemicals harmful to pets.
14. Adjust the thermostat to keep the house comfortable (heat or air conditioning) for your pets during your absence.
15. Lock outside gates, swimming pool area, doors & windows.
16. Make sure your pet is safely inside before you leave. Its amazing how many owners forget when they are in a hurry to get on the road or to the airport.
17. Leave Emergency number list on fridge. The list should include your whereabouts, vet's, plumbers, electricians, pool maintenance, friends & family to contact.
18. Leave a detailed list of your pets daily routine, diet, medications, hide & seek areas and rooms that off limits for your pet to roam free.
19. Remember to inform your pet sitter ASAP if there are any changes in your travel plans.
20. Leave a most recent photo your pet just in case your dog or cat tries to become an escape artist and succeeds. Shop for eco-friendly, all natural & organic goodies for your new furry family member.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Benefits & Tips on Hiring a Pet Sitter

Last minute travel plans can be stressful enough, but finding some one to tend to your pet can add another level of stress. Unable to find a neighbor, family member or friend to take care of furry loved one and you don't like boarding your pet. Well, a pet sitter is a good option. So, what are the benefits to hiring a pet sitter?

1. Your pet gets to stay in the environment he or she is accustomed to while staying on his or regular diet & routine !

2. Traveling can sometimes be stressful on your pet. By hiring a pet sitter your pet does not have to stay at a kennel, in an unfamiliar place.

3. Your pet will get an over abundance of love, affection & attention.

4. You get a peace of mind knowing your pet is being cared for by a qualified professional.

5. Pet sitters sometimes offer more services then just walking, feeding & playing with your pet. Often times they will water your plants & pick up the mail.

Start with a recommendation from a friend, neighbor, veterinarian, humane society or dog trainer. Make sure your pet sitter is affiliated with a professional pet sitter organization or has solid references. When hiring a qualified & reliable pet sitter to take care of pet what should you look for? Here are a few tips that will make the hiring process a bit easier.
  1. 1. Are you bonded & insured? Hire a pet sitter that is bonded and insured. The bonding covers theft of property while under a pet sitter’s care and the insurance covers pet and home liability.

    2. Call & Interview! Once you have found pet sitters in your area the next step is to call and interview candidates over the phone. Ask what they charge, how long the visits are, if they are bonded and insured, and if they have any special skills, such as caring for birds or reptiles, or veterinary experience. Ask how many pet sitters they employ and their days of operation. Inquire about whether they charge extra during the holidays. Make sure you ask them to bring references if you decide you want to meet them in person.

    3. Meet them in Person! Professional pet sitters always want to meet & greet you and your pet at your home prior to booking. This is important part of the step because it allows you to see how the pet sitter will interact with your pet and you can evaluate them in person. Remember pets are a good judge of character and will let you know if they are not comfortable. You can then explain your pets daily routine. You can tell a lot from someone body language and whether or not they are interested in what you are telling them and if they are taking notes or asking questions. If this visit goes well, start by hiring the pet sitter to care for your pet during a short trip, such as a weekend excursion. That way, you can work out any problems before leaving your beloved pet in the pet sitter's care for longer periods.

    4. Voice your pets special needs. Make sure to tell the pet sitter about any special needs you pet may have, such as medications, illnesses or conditions or special dietary needs.

    5. Sign on the dotted line! Many pet sitters will have a contract for you to sign. But look it over carefully and ask questions about anything you don’t understand. If you are hesitant you can always sleep on it and get back to the pet sitter the next day. Make sure you understand their rate schedule, how many visits you can expect during your absence, and what provisions they have in place in case of an emergency with your pet.

    If you & your pet love what you hear & see then make sure you give the pet sitter your phone number to where you will be, your veterinarian’s name and phone number, and the name of a friend or family member who could also help during an emergency. Shop for eco-friendly, all natural & organic goodies for your new furry family member.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Top First Aid Emergency Safety Tips for Pet Sitters

Are you about to head out on a last minute business trip and unable to find a friend to care for your pet. Well, there are two alternatives you can board your pet at kennel or call on a pet sitter. Just make sure you do your research to make sure your dog will be getting the proper loving care it deserves and left in the hands of reliable care-givers.

Well, if you are the lucky pet sitter to get hired here are a list of tips for those just in case emergencies. Remember you have a huge responsibility, not only do you feed, play, walk & take your clients pet on potty breaks you are there as guardian to protect. These tips will prepare you for anything & make your client feel more at ease & relaxed knowing that their furry family member are in good hands.

1) Learn CPR & Heimlich- Take a pet first aid class so you can learn skills and knowledge in order to react quickly and correctly in a pet emergency

2) First Aid Kit on the Go!-Create or purchase a just in case pet first aid kit and leave on in the car. Putting together your own First Aid Kit will allow you to customize it to your four legged clientele and you will know what you have in you kit. Our friends at compiled a list of items to be included in your pet first aid kit.

3) Locate Pet Records-Make sure that you know where your clients pet records are located. Tell your new clients to alert their vet that you will be caring for their pet and also to have a credit card on file at the vet for emergencies.

4) Map out vet route! -Depending on the severity of the emergency sometimes every second counts so know where your clients vets so you can get to the vet quickly. Take time to print a map and leave in your clients file.

5) Wheres the closet vet clinic?- You should also be aware of the nearest vet clinics in your vicinity, the hours of operation, and if their is a vet is on staff during operating hours. Sometimes the vet is called in only if needed.

6) Transporting pet- If you are caring for large dogs make sure you have a way to transport them to the vet. It will be helpful to call a friend or neighbor for assistance if you are having trouble lifting a larger dog or have a guerney in your vehicle. When transporting & caring for cats make sure you know where clients carriers are located.

These tips are sure to give your clients a peace mind & make you confident knowing you are prepared for anything! Shop for eco-friendly, all natural & organic goodies for your new furry family member.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

5 tips to help you get better photo's of your dog.

Getting your energetic & easily distracted pup to sit still & smile for the camera can be a challenge. Here are some tips to taking a good photos that will capture your photogenic pup “paw-sonality”.

1. Dog Eyes View- It's important to stoop to your dogs level, literally. Lay on the floor or grass to get that perfect shot. If need be you can prop your dog up on a chair or table to get eye level.

2. Location, Location- Taking your photo shot outside really helps to enhance your dog’s features. The sunlight really shows off your dogs coat, which works perfect for dogs with darker coats. If you decide to take your photo shot inside of your pup a drawn shade is helpful. Don’t be afraid to take close up mug shots and while outside get your dogs in action enjoying the scenery.

3. Squirrels!- If you are shooting outside make sure trees, squirrels, poles & other distractions are not in the frame.

4. Be Creative with your shots, remember that although your dog may be the center of your world he or she does not have to be in the center of the shot. Taking photos of your dog off center adds interest and different perspective.

5. Hey! Over here!- Getting your dogs attention can be quite a task. If you want your dog to tilt it head, ears or make a funny impression.

Oh! Don't forget to have fun!

This list is by no means complete, so we want your help. Leave a comment below with your tips to take better photo's of your dog.

Shop for eco-friendly, all natural & organic goodies for your new furry family member.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Top 10 Reasons Senior Dogs Make the Best Traveling Road-Trip Companions

We recently came across an article on that was quite interesting. One of our Twitter friends Robyn (aka @ChaucerandCo ) tells of her traveling escapades with her senior dogs Chauncer & Bronte. She also compiled a top ten list of reasons why senior dogs make good traveling co-pilots. So were are happy to share the article & pic with you!

Here story starts now....

s regular readers know, ours is a two-dog household: Between 15-month-old Brontë, the bouncy yellow lab, and 15-year-old Chaucer, the famous fox terrier, we strike a daily balance between chaos and quiet. Brontë is up for a hike, a run, or swim anytime, anywhere, making her a great traveling companion for our more active adventures. But after a year's worth of day trips and cross-country treks with both of them, I've come to the conclusion that senior dogs truly make the best road-trip companions!

#1 Older dogs turn a deaf ear--literally, in many cases--to your choice of road-trip music and the sound of you singing (perhaps tonelessly) at the top of your voice.

#2 Older dogs are not ready for their next 45-minute break running around a park two minutes after their last romp. (They do require regular breaks to stretch their legs and relieve themselves, but a cozy patch of grass is all that's necessary--not an extensive walking area or leash-free dog park.)

#3 Older dogs let you drive in peace and quiet when you want to. Chaucer now uses his favorite car toy as a pillow rather than for incessant squeaking.

#4 Older dogs are more flexible about mealtimes. Brontë's internal clock tells her it's time for dinner at six o'clock regardless of what time zone we're in--and then she subtly lets us know. Chaucer snoozes until the car stops, only then looking around as if to say, "Well, hello there! Snack, anyone?"

#5 Older dogs have more delicate stomachs, so you can enjoy that great roadside meal all on your own guilt-free. Ever try savoring an In-N-Out Burger with an alert hound's eyes fixated unblinkingly on you, oh-so-trustful that you are just moments away from sharing the delicacy with your very best friend?

#6 Older dogs are easier in hotel rooms. If they're no longer able to jump on furniture, there's no need to drape the bed and chairs with coverings from home. (A waterproof pad beneath your dog's own bed or blanket is a good idea, however, if he's ever had a nighttime accident.) And while Chaucer's nose still works quite well, he's no longer able to sniff out the scent of every single cat and dog and sticky-fingered child that's been there before him, which means he settles down for a relaxing night's sleep much more quickly.

#7 Older dogs are a great way to meet people. Can a true dog lover ever resist asking permission to pet a senior dog when they spot the tell-tale grey muzzle or arthritic limp? I can't. On more than one occasion during our latest cross-country camping trip, we actually had people cross entire parking lots to scratch Chaucer behind the ears. Some immediately recognized him as a dog of mature years from his faded coloring; others saw him walking stiffly and wanted to know if he'd gotten hurt. And all had their own story of a beloved old dog to tell, before we parted ways with wishes for safe travels on both sides. If you like meeting people when you travel, there's no better ice breaker than a gentle old hound!

#8 Which leads me to the next point... Traveling with an older dog is an effective way to promote the adoption of older dogs! I can't count how many times we've been asked incredulously, "He's 15--and he travels everywhere with you?!" (Honestly, some people almost seem to be looking around for his portable oxygen tank....)

Chaucer is actually a great example for explaining the differences between traveling with an older and a younger dog, because he was such an energetic and mischievous scamp until just a few years ago. (Scaling eight-foot chain-link fences... rattling the cheap windows in an apartment I once had until they popped loose and he could escape... the list goes on...)

So we share a few Chaucer stories and talk about our on-the-road adventures today, and people start nodding their heads, saying things like, "You know, my parents travel a lot in their RV and would really like to have a dog, but say they're not active enough for one. Maybe they should adopt a senior."

#9 Older dogs offer an additional level of personal protection. Well, at least Chaucer does! Reposing quietly on his blanket, so still as to appear asleep until you notice his eyes taking in everything, he apparently gives off the impression of being as latently lethal as a crocodile--slow and sluggish until dangerously aroused. I say this not because the little guy looks the slightest bit threatening (more like a stuffed animal, actually), but because on multiple occasions we have witnessed his surprising effect on strangers who approach our campsite, car, or picnic area. They stride up, spot him, come to a dead stop, sometimes step back a foot or two, and ask warily, "Does he bite?" (Of course not--unless you actually are a ne'er-do-well threatening one of his people; he simply feels there is no point for a famous literary dog to expend energy getting up when most people quite happily come down to his level to rub his ears or tummy and tell him how sweet he is.)

When approached by a stranger, dogs are either friendly (bouncing around, tail wagging, et cetera), noncommittal (they sit or stand at attention but because they're waiting for the release command from their person you can't gauge their friendliness level), or protective (a move, low growl, or some other sign makes it clear you should keep your distance). My theory is that since Chaucer falls into none of these categories, his cool, quiet stare at newcomers must unnerve some of them!

Senior Mutt MatchWhile we'll certainly never exclude Brontë from our travel adventures, road trips with active dogs like her require a little more planning in advance (printing lists of dog parks from the Dog Fun Directory, for example) and less driving time per day to accommodate her long exercise breaks. Chaucer's needs are simpler--and what's more, at his age he'd rather be cruising the highways and byways of America with his people than trying to keep up with the young pooches at places like Taming Anubis or Camp Canine. Which brings me to my final, and most important, reason why older dogs make the best road-trip companions:

#10 Taking an older dog along as your road-trip companion makes him happy! Dogs are pack animals who like the security and comfort of their dens. What is more den-like than a comfy nest of blankets in an enclosed car in the company of the leader of their pack--you!

Whether you've had your faithful friend since he was a pup, or adopted him in his golden years, there's no kinder act for an old dog than making him feel he's still an important part of the family.

So if you're an avid traveler who's been considering a new canine companion, please note that there are non-profits nationwide that specialize in helping dogs who've reached their golden years. Senior Mutt Match, for example, has links to rescue organizations around the country where you can find a new, slightly less active, but no less loving four-legged friend just right for you.

Shop for eco-friendly, all natural & organic goodies for your new furry family member.