5th Annual Prosperous Pet Business Online Conference

Mark your calendars for September 12, 2018!

Interested in growing your pet business?  Are you thinking about starting a business.  If you are interested in pet sitting, dog walking, training, grooming, or daycare, then join the 5th Annual Prosperous Pet Business Online Conference!  This year you will hear from the top speakers from the previous 4 years!

Check back with PetsitUSA for additional information in the following weeks.

PetsitUSA Blog

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Humanely Raised Farm Animals & Respect for our Planet

Humanely Raised Animals - OrigiNative

What my own dogs eat has raised my consciousness and influenced my decisions about how to choose ingredients for my own diet. Thanks, Maisie and Wanda Weimaraner!

My realization came about ever since Halo coined the phrase OrigiNative® and changed the entire way they source their ingredients to focus on humanely-raised animals and non-GMO plants in their kibble (which Maisie and Wanda Hotchner eat every day as part of their diets).  I realized I could be making those same choices for myself with just a bit of effort. It’s funny how that happens – the pets leading the way!

For years when I was live every week on the air with CAT CHAT on Sirius satellite radio, when people called in with deep concerns about what they were feeding their dogs and cats, I recognized their own “lightbulb moment” when they realized that they could make healthier food choices for themselves and their human family members, too.

Concern for our (extended!)-family’s health is important, but don’t we need to consider the entire food chain and how those ingredients make their way to us?  What struck me recently is that even though I’ve personally been avoiding processed foods and concentrating on fresh ingredients for decades, I wasn’t aware of how the soil was being treated. Because of the work of the American Humane Association and the Humane Society of the United States on behalf of food-chain animals, I was theoretically “woke” about the horrible conditions in which chickens (for eggs and meat), pigs, beef cattle and dairy cows lived and died. I’ve been choosing cage-free, vegetarian-fed eggs for years (my girls get scrambled eggs at least twice a week, too) but what I hadn’t put together was that I could make choices about all my ingredients that followed these three simple rules:

  • No to close confinement on feedlots (which means cage-free egg hens and gestation-crate-free pigs).
  • No to antibiotics used during growth.
  • No to GMO plants for ourselves or animal feed.

In pockets of “moral high ground” across the country, people have been talking about the importance of feeding ourselves and our children (two-legged and four-legged) with healthier choices. Our focus on what ingredients are good for us has enabled food stores like Whole Foods to flourish, and more wholesome areas in traditional supermarkets to grow as well. However, I now see we have to take it a step further and use our pocketbooks to make a statement: choose providers that do not keep farm animals in close confinement, farmers who refuse to abuse antibiotics for faster growth, and those who do not use genetically-modified animal feed, which helps promote environmental balance and a healthy ecosystem .

In a world where things often seem to be going to “hell in a handbasket,” each of us making the best possible choices for our human and pet family members’ meals is a way to feel you’re treading a little more lightly on the planet and setting a good example.  

Halo achieves these goals by embracing an agricultural and ranching system that is more original and native—what they call OrigiNative®. Read more on Halo’s embrace of the humane raising of farm animals.

Tracie HotchnerTracie Hotchner is a nationally acclaimed pet wellness advocate, who wrote THE DOG BIBLE: Everything Your Dog Wants You to Know and THE CAT BIBLE: Everything Your Cat Expects You to Know. She is recognized as the premiere voice for pets and their people on pet talk radio. She continues to produce and host her own Gracie® Award winning NPR show DOG TALK®  (and Kitties, Too!) from Peconic Public Broadcasting in the Hamptons after 9 consecutive years and over 500 shows. She produced and hosted her own live, call-in show CAT CHAT® on the Martha Stewart channel of Sirius/XM for over 7 years until the channel was canceled, when Tracie created her own Radio Pet Lady Network where she produces and co-hosts CAT CHAT® along with 10 other pet talk radio podcasts with top veterinarians and pet experts.

Dog Film Festival - Tracie HotchnerTracie also is the Founder and Director of the annual NY Dog Film Festival, a philanthropic celebration of the love between dogs and their people. Short canine-themed documentary, animated and narrative films from around the world create a shared audience experience that inspires, educates and entertains. With a New York City premiere every October, the Festival then travels around the country, partnering in each location with an outstanding animal welfare organization that brings adoptable dogs to the theater and receives half the proceeds of the ticket sales. Halo was a Founding Sponsor in 2015 and donated 10,000 meals to the beneficiary shelters in every destination around the country in 2016.

Tracie lives in Bennington, Vermont – where the Radio Pet Lady Network studio is based – and where her 12 acres are well-used by her 2-girl pack of lovely, lively rescued Weimaraners, Maisie and Wanda.

Halo Pets

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Can Dogs Get Heatstroke?

Happy first day of summer! Seems like a great time to remind all of us to keep our dogs cool when the temperatures go up. Because, yes, they can get heatstroke. Here’s a nifty graphic from the Texas Veterinary Medical Foundation. Click on it to view it full-size. Until next time, Good day, and good […]

Doggies.com Dog Blog

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Gene flow between tazi and wolf in Kazakhstan

tazi mating with wolf

This image appeared on a Kazakh instagram account. 

The wolf appears to be a steppe wolf (Canis lupus campestris). In Kazakhstan, people keep wolves as pets and “guard dogs” fairly often, and according to Stephen Bodio, they are obsessed with wolves.

The dog is a tazi, a sighthound of the general saluki breed complex, that has quite a few wolf-like characteristics. The breed is usually monestrus, like a wolf, coyote, or a basenji, and females engage in social suppression of estrus and sometimes kill puppies that are born to lower ranking bitches.

I wonder if the wolf-like traits of this breed are somehow reinforced by occasionally crossings with captive and wandering wolves like this. As far as I know, no one has really looked into the genetics of the Kazakh tazi, but it is an unusual dog that lives in a society with a very strong tradition of keeping captive wolves.

We know that gene flows between Eurasian wolves and dogs is much higher than we initially imagined, but I don’t know if anyone is looking at breeds like these for signs of hybridization. The only study I’ve seen looked at livestock guardian dogs from the Caucasus, and it found quite a bit of gene flow-– and it was mostly unintentional.

It would be interesting to know exactly how much wolf is in Kazakh tazis. I would be shocked to learn that they had no wolf ancestry.

I seriously doubt that this is the only time a captive steppe wolf and a tazi were found in this position.

Natural History

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Like most Americans I greet the World Cup with a yawn

The Poodle (and Dog) Blog

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6 Ways To Take Better Care of Your Hair and Nails

6 Ways To Take Better Care of Your Hair and Nails

Thank you for supporting the brands that help make Bubby and Bean possible. This post is sponsored by Ionicell for Women, but all opinions are my own.

I talk a lot about things I do to take care of my kids around here, but only occasionally do I mention taking care of myself. And this applies to my real life, outside of the blog, as well. I’d venture to say most moms – and women in general – could say the same thing. We tend to take care of others before ourselves, in all aspects of our lives. We are strong, badass babes, but we usually come in at the bottom of our to do lists.

That said, I’ve been working a lot in 2018 to change this. I’ve posted a few times about different efforts I’m making to remember that I’m important too. The most recent of these efforts has to do with my appearance – specifically my hair and nails. My hair and nails have majorly suffered since becoming a mom a few years ago. My hair changed after becoming pregnant for the first time, and started breaking and falling out more frequently. And taking care of little kids is a surefire way to make sure your nails are consistently broken. I decided it was time to do something to improve the health of my hair and nails, and my skin while I was at it. And it’s been working. More than anything, when I look good, I feel good. I think most of us would agree, so today I thought I’d share the things I’ve been doing, in case you’d like to take better care of your hair, skin, and nails as well.

6 Ways To Take Better Care of Your Hair and Nails

1. Stay moisturized. Keeping both my hair and nails moisturized with a good quality oil (I use argan, but coconut oil works well too, especially on cuticles) seems to make a big difference in how healthy they look. I apply it to both my hands and my hair when they’re damp, which helps with absorption.

2. Eat blueberries. Blueberries are full of antioxidants (more than all other fruits!), which help protect cells against free radical damage – including in hair and nails. I’ve been freezing them, which makes for the most delicious (and convenient) dessert.

6 Ways To Take Better Care of Your Hair and Nails
6 Ways To Take Better Care of Your Hair and Nails

3. Take Ionicell for Women.

This has been the easiest and most effective step I’ve taken to improve the quality of my hair, nails, and skin. For the past few weeks, I’ve been taking this dietary supplement once or twice a day, everyday, after meals. IoniCell for Women by Mineral BioSciences is specially formulated and clinically proven to help our bodies generate collagen, rehydrate cells (for healthier skin!), protect cells, and improve their performance. The capsules are easy to swallow, and absorb quickly, and I’ve really started to see results. My nails are visibly stronger (and the longest they been in years!), which makes sense, since Ionicell for Women specifically helps to strengthen, protect, and nourish nails. Ionicell for Women may also improve hair appearance and luster (for all hair types!), and I believe it – my hair seems to be thicker and shinier, and doesn’t seem to be breaking as easily. My four year old daughter even told me I look like Rapunzel (I’ll take it), and is constantly asking to braid my hair. It also helps stimulate collagen for healthier skin, which is a huge bonus! IoniCell for Women contains something very cool called Ioniplex, which is a fulvic ionic mineral that contains from 65 to 72 essential macro and trace minerals. This combination of fulvic acid and minerals in an ionic form is super powerful, with all sorts of beneficial effects. So in addition to potentially making your hair, nail, and skin look great, it protects against cellular damage (which is a major cause of aging!), provides nutrients to each cell for energy production, enhances nutrient absorption, and helps neutralize free radicals. It genuinely affects changes in appearance at the cellular level, and enhances beauty from deep within. Pretty great, right? If you’re looking to improve the quality and condition of your nails, hair, and skin, I definitely recommend giving it a try.

6 Ways To Take Better Care of Your Hair and Nails

4. Use a nail strengthening polish. Even if my nails are bare and I don’t have time to paint them, I try to keep them covered with a coat of nail strengthener. It only takes a couple of minutes, and it really does seem to help prevent breakage.

5. Eat Greek yogurt. I’m a vegetarian, so I sometimes don’t consume as much protein as I need. Nails are made out of protein, and getting enough will help strengthen them. (It’s good for your hair too!). Greek yogurt is full of protein, and easy to incorporate into your diet. I eat it plain, but also in smoothies, with cereal, and as a sauce (it’s so good on tacos!).

6. Trim regularly. Did anyone else grow up with a parent or grandparent telling you that getting your hair trimmed makes it grow faster? While that’s not technically true, keeping the ends of hair healthy and free from split ends – through regular trims – will help prevent breakage. And I have found the same to be true for my nails. If I trim them occasionally, they tend to break less and therefore grow longer more quickly.

6 Ways To Take Better Care of Your Hair and Nails

As I said earlier, when I look good, I feel good. I also feel emotionally and mentally at my best when I know I’m making the effort to take care of my appearance. And knowing that even simple, easy steps likes these can make a profound difference in the state of my nails and hair motivates me to continue to take care of them – and my whole self, too.

Do you have any tips or tricks for healthy nails and hair? Have any of your tried Ionicell for Women yet?


Bubby and Bean ::: Living Creatively

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One Cat Recovers From Trauma Thanks to a Caring Staff and Halo®

Nannette from The Arizona Animal Welfare League
“We placed a portion of several varieties of Halo wet cat food in her kennel to entice her. Slowly but surely, she leaned over and began eating…”

June is Adopt-a-Shelter-Cat Month, a time to bring awareness to kitten season when millions of kittens are born and often end up in animal shelters increasing the need for cat adoption and foster care.

Halo encourages adopting through a shelter like The Arizona Animal Welfare League & SPCA (AAWL &SPCA), where they rescue, rehabilitate and re-home more than 4,000 dogs and cats that are abandoned or that have been surrendered by their owners.

Recently, Director of Shelter Operations for AAWL, Christine Flanagan, shared with us a story about a cat named Nannette. She said:

“Nannette made her way to AAWL after having a feeding tube inserted after ‘not eating’. Our vets quickly determined that she had swallowed something, causing a very serious blockage, which threatened her life. After the surgery to remove the feeding tube and foreign body, Nannette still would not eat. She had been through a lot of trauma. Unfortunately, if she didn’t start eating soon, her body would start shutting down and she could die. After trying several options and Nannette turning her nose up – someone remembered we had Halo wet food for cats in our retail boutique! We placed a portion of several varieties of Halo wet cat food in her kennel to entice her. Slowly but surely, she leaned over and began eating – and not just one flavor, ALL of them. We knew she was finally going to be ok. There was not a dry eye in the clinic as we watched her eat her first meal in weeks – veterinarians, vet techs, animal care staff. In the coming weeks, she grew stronger every day until she was adopted by her new family.”

Nannette from The Arizona Animal Welfare League

Although Nannette has been adopted, there are many adoptable pets at AAWL looking for a forever home. At Halo, we are proud to partner with shelters like AAWL who love and care for so many animals like Nannette. Thank you for making it possible for pets to have a second chance at love and life.

Halo Pets

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Facebook Fan Says, “Thank You For Making a Quality Vegan Dog Food”

Bailey loves Halo vegan dog food

“…our pup loves your [vegan] food as much as we love the ingredients.”

Halo® Facebook Fan Alyssa Markille shares with us her experience with Halo Garden of Vegan® dog food recipe. She says:

“Just want to say thank you for making a quality vegan dog food!!! Just discovered this brand from a friend at the pet store and I’m so excited that our pup loves your food as much as we love the ingredients. She’s struggled with food allergies for a long time and it’s nice to have options that are not prescription but that are real foods.” 

Alyssa, thank you so much for sharing your story and we’re happy Bailey loves our vegan dog food

Halo Pets

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Friday Funny: Dog Hours

I feel exactly the same way sometimes! Until next time, Good day, and good dog!

Doggies.com Dog Blog

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GIVEAWAY! Win a $200 Gift Card to Butter Clothing

GIVEAWAY! Win a $  200 Gift Card to Butter Bamboo Clothing

Happy Wednesday! Head over to our Instagram for an absolutely incredible giveaway for a $ 200 gift card to one of our favorite new clothing companies, Butter!  (I’m wearing their luxuriously soft, insanely comfortable  Leggings, Bralette, and Butterfly Throw in this photo.) I’m telling you guys, their eco-friendly, handmade, hand-dyed, buttery-soft bamboo garments are truly some of the most delicious articles of clothing in my closet. (Essley said I “feel like a magical cloud” when I wear them and I agree.) Entering is super easy, so make sure you check it out right here.


Bubby and Bean ::: Living Creatively

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