50 Ways to Save Money on Dog Expenses

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50 Ways to Save Money on Dog Expenses

Photo by Rollan Budi / CC BY-SA 2.0

Have you ever calculated how much you spend a year on your dog? I haven’t because I’m not sure I really want to know. By just guesstimating the cost of food, vet bills, medications, supplements, toys, and other supplies—it’s a lot! Haley’s worth every penny we spend on her, but it sure is nice when we can save a few dollars here and there. Here’s how you can save money on dog expenses too!

50 Ways to Save Money on Dog Expenses

FINDING YOUR NEW BEST FRIEND

1. Don’t shop, adopt!
Find your pup at a local shelter or rescue and you’ll save a lot of money and usually the spay/neuter expense and some vaccinations are included in the adoption fee too. If you’re looking for a pure-bred dog, check for a breed-specific rescue in your area.

FOOD AND TREATS

2. Don’t skimp on food.
Cheap, low-quality food offers little nutritional value and it will cost you more in the end with related health issues and higher vet bills. Bonus! Dogs will normally eat less (and poop less) when fed a high-quality food.
3. Avoid buying food and treats in grocery stores.
Prices in grocery stores are usually higher while quality and selection are generally lower. You’ll get better deals at your local pet store, livestock, or feed store and they often carry better brands of food.
4. Higher prices don’t always equal higher quality.
Don’t assume expensive brands are always better or more nutritious. Take the time to compare labels and ingredients.
5. Measure your dog’s food.
The recommended feeding amounts listed on most packages of food are a little on the high side which can lead to overfeeding and an overweight dog. Measure your dog’s food and track their weight and appearance to find the appropriate daily serving size for your dog and their activity level.
6. Make your own homemade food.
It may be cheaper to make your dog’s food yourself and you’ll know exactly what goes into it. Check with your vet or the BalanceIt website if you need some help in creating nutritional meals.
7. Buy in bulk.
Buy food in bigger bags or larger quantities and stockpile extra food when you find it on sale. You can even ask for larger discounts when buying in bulk and if your friends or family members use the same food, you can share the savings.
8. Take advantage of store promotions.
Local stores usually have some type of loyalty card or frequent shopper program to help you save money. Also, take advantage of those in-store surveys and coupons that print at the bottom of your receipt.
9. Follow your favorite brands on social media.
Lots of brands provide special offers, rebates and coupons on their Facebook or Twitter accounts. Most brands also provide the option to sign up for email offers from their website.
10. Order food and treats online.
It’s often cheaper and more convenient to order your dog’s food online. You’ll save time and gasoline and often you’ll get free shipping too. I love Chewy.com for their low prices and amazing customer service!
11. Compare online prices and get extra savings.
Check online prices through Google or sites like PriceGrabber or Shopzilla, then look for extra discounts or coupons codes on sites like PawDiet, RetailMeNot, Groupon, EBates, and coupons.com.
12. Choose the auto-ship option to save even more.
Some online stores offer a 5-10 percent additional discount if you have your food automatically shipped when you need it. Bonus! You never have to worry about running out of food.
13. Buy and use discounted gift cards.
Buy discounted, pet-related gift cards from sites like Raise or Cardpool. Better yet, get some money for those gift cards sitting in your wallet that you’ll probably never use.
14. Check online discount pet stores for bargains.
Websites like Doggyloot.com and Coupaw.com offer treats and other pet items for bargain hunters.
15. Make your own treats.
It’s easy to make homemade treats for your dog and most recipes require only a few ingredients you probably already have on hand. A food dehydrator is ideal for making jerky and treats that will last a long time.
16. Head to your local butcher shop.
Ask your local butcher (or at your grocery store meat counter) for some raw, meaty bones. Knuckle bones are great or they’ll usually custom cut other bones for your pup too. They might charge a small fee but if you’re lucky, they’ll give you the bones for free. Quick reminder—never give your pup cooked bones or any small bones that might splinter or cause a choking hazard.
17. Divide and conquer costs.
Cut or break large treats into smaller pieces. I promise, your dog won’t notice the difference and you’ll be saving money and calories!
18. Kibble as treats?
Yep! Most dogs are perfectly happy getting a few small pieces of kibble instead of more expensive treats.
19. Everyone loves leftovers.
Okay, maybe you don’t like leftovers, but your dog will love getting some healthy, lean meat or veggies instead of packaged treats. Just make sure the food is safe for dogs to eat and it’s not spoiled. Don’t feed your pup junk food or high-calorie leftovers, stick to lean meats and vegetables.

GENERAL SUPPLIES

20. Look for freebies.
What’s better than free, right? Ask friends or inquire on social media to see if anyone has pet items they no longer need. Chances are, someone has a dog crate or baby gate they would be happy to give away. Freecycle and Craigslist are two other places to look for free items.
21. Buy quality items when it matters.
Dollar store finds are good sometimes but buying cheap items over and over again because they break doesn’t really save money. It pays to invest in quality items, like collars and leashes, that are safer for your dog and will hold up longer.
22.Check eBay for great deals.
eBay not only has great prices, but you can often find favorite toys or items that might be no longer available in stores.
23. Buy functional bedding.
When buying your pup a new bed, make sure it has zippers and removable padding so it can be easily taken apart and washed.
24. Make your dog’s bed.
Use some old blankets or quilts combined with pillows or old clothes for stuffing and you’ll end up with a bed that your dog will love more than the expensive versions found in stores. Bonus! Your dog will love having your scent on their new, custom crib.
25. Make your own custom car cover.
You can easily make a car seat cover by customizing an old quilt with sewn-on straps or pieces of velcro.
26. Save money (and frustration) by housebreaking your pup early.
Train your puppy as soon as possible so they’ll want to potty outside and you’ll save a ton of money on those puppy pee pads.
27. Get crafty with fashion trends.
Not all dogs can be fashionistas but if you just love the look of those expensive accessories, but plain or inexpensive versions and customize them yourself.
28. There’s a purpose to repurpose.
Instead of buying new or expensive pet items, repurpose household items you already have. Use ceramic or metal bowls for pet bowls or recycle grocery bags instead of buying poop bags.

TOYS

29. Don’t pay too much for toys.
Shop for dog toys at discount stores where prices are generally lower than prices at pet stores.
30. Review the reviews.
When ordering toys online, check reviews to see if they’re good quality and durable.
31. Take your dog garage sale shopping.
Community garage sales are a great opportunity to walk your dog and browse for bargains. I know some people that only buy stuffed animals from garage sales for their pups that like to shred toys.
32. Make your own puzzle toys.
You get the idea. Take an old muffin tin, throw in some treats and cover them with tennis balls. Your dog will be thrilled! Get creative and try other homemade puzzles and games for your pup.
33. What’s old is new again.
Instead of throwing out toys when your dog gets bored with them, put them away for several months. Rotate the toys and your pooch will be happy to see those toys again later on.
34. Make toys out of things your dog loves.
Simple items found around the house can bring your dog a lot of joy. They might like an empty water bottle with treats inside or a tennis ball stuffed into an old sock. Haley’s favorite pastime is ripping up cardboard boxes when a couple of treats are hidden inside. Here’s some more ideas!

VET CARE AND MEDS

35. An once of prevention can save a lot of money.
Keeping your dog at a healthy weight, regular exercise, annual vet checks, preventative care, and parasite control methods can prevent major health issues and expenses later on. Brushing your dog’s teeth or even rubbing a little gauze or cloth along their gum line can help prevent expensive dental cleanings and even extend your dog’s life.
36. It’s time for a safety check.
An easy way to avoid expensive emergency vet care is to dog proof your home and make sure you pup has a safe and secure yard. It’s common sense, but most accidents and poisonings can be easily avoided.
37. Keep an open dialog with your vet.
Shop around for the best vet that works within your budget and be open to discussing any financial concerns about treatment options. If a large, unexpected expense occurs, most vets offer favorable financing options through CareCredit.
38. Evaluate pet insurance options carefully.
Shop and compare pet insurance companies before purchasing or consider putting aside what you would pay in premiums into a special savings account for pet care expenses. There are also discounted care plans, like Pet Assure, that may be beneficial.
39. Vets give discounts too.
If you have multiple pets, ask your vet if they’ll offer a discount on services. Some vets have discounted programs for vaccinations and dental cleanings during certain times of the year. My vet even offers a rewards card so I can earn points towards credit for future services.
40. Animal charities may offer discounted services.
Check with the Humane Society, ASPCA or other local pet charities to inquire about free or discounted spaying/neutering and vaccination programs in your area.
41. DIY vet care.
You can eliminate unnecessary expenses and trips to the vet by doing what you can yourself. I give Haley her monthly Adequan shots at home and I can save $25.00 each time Haley gets a vaccination by giving her two Benadryl tablets before her appointment, rather than her getting an injection for allergic reactions in the vet’s office.
42. Save on prescription medications.
Compare the cost of buying your dog’s medications from your vet with prices from online pharmacies and local stores like Kroger or Costco. Some drug companies have discounts or loyalty programs that offer savings on the drugs themselves or credits that can be applied towards services at your vet’s office.
43. Do you really need those expensive pill pockets?
Why not try hiding the pills in other food or make your own pill pockets at home.
44. Check for generic medications.
There may be generic drug options available for your pet’s medications and they’ll likely be cheaper. Also ask your vet about generic flea and tick prevention products.

PROFESSIONAL SERVICES

45. Save money on grooming.
Stretch out the time between grooming appointments by using a dry shampoo or pet wipes to freshen up your pup. Save even more by giving baths, trims and toenail maintenance at home. If you need a bigger or more convenient space for giving baths, try a self-service pet wash station.
46. Take advantage of free dog training options.
You can learn a lot about positive reinforcement dog training by visiting blogs, getting books from the library or watching YouTube videos online—all for free!
47. Walk your dog.
Instead of paying a professional dog walker, walk your dog yourself or even offer to walk a few of your neighbor’s dogs too for some extra cash. If that’s not a option for you, perhaps a neighbor could walk your dog in exchange for another service you can offer them.
48. Trade doggie daycare for play dates.
Give up the doggie daycare expense in favor of getting together with friends who also have dogs or visit your local dog park.
49. Are you bored with boarding options?
Boarding your dog at a kennel can be expensive and not that much fun for your dog either. Ask a family member if they would be wiling to pet sit your pup or perhaps a neighbor would be willing to take care of your dog and you could do the same for them when they’re away.
50. Hire someone to take care of your dog.
Paying a friend, family member, neighbor or local pet sitter might still be a better and cheaper option than paying to have your pup boarded at a kennel. Bonus! Your dog gets to stay comfortably at home or with somebody they love.

Dog With Cash

Photo by OTA Photos / CC BY-SA 2.0

It’s always nice to save a few dollars here and there, but if you’re really struggling with expenses, be sure to contact your local Humane Society or other local pet charities to see what resources might be available to you.

Our pups don’t have to eat up all of our disposable income but I’m sure I’ve overlooked some other ways to save money on dog expenses, so share your favorite frugal tips with us in the comment section below!


Why Dogs Make Us Laugh

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Why Dogs Make Us LaughWith all their goofy looks and antics, it’s no wonder we cherish our dogs as our best friends. Dogs make us laugh when they’re unpredictable and silly. They entertain us with their playful nature and creative problem solving skills. But I think one of the biggest reasons dogs make us laugh is their human-like behaviors and expressions. Even though they don’t share most of our human emotions, sometimes they seem to act like young children. Maybe that’s why we even find it humorous when they’re a little mischievous.

Laughter Is the Best Medicine

Today, I’m doing my part in encouraging you to celebrating National Humor Month. I know, another one of those silly holidays or special months you’ve probably never heard of, right? But this one is truly worth celebrating all year long. Laughter not only increases the level of endorphins which make us feel better, but it can also lower blood pressure, reduce stress and boost our immune systems.

So, if you happen to need a humor boost this month, start by looking through some of your pup pics and share your funniest image with us in the comment section below. I’ll get things started with some of Haley’s amusing antics.

Why Our Dogs Make Us Laugh

Dog Going Down SlideTrying New Things
Dog Going Down SlideEven Though They Don't Always Go As Planned
Dirty Dog Bath

Finding the Absolute Best Place to Take a Bath

Dog in Halloween HatParty Girl on Saturday Night
Dog in Halloween HatChurch on Sunday Morning
Dog Biting Basketball

Taking a Bite Out of Life

Dog Biting Cardboard Box

And Never Worrying About Biting Off More Than You Can Chew

Dog Riding Luggage CartSome Lazy Dayz
Dog Riding Luggage CartSome Crazy Dayz
Dog Retrieving Log

Not Being Afraid to Rise to a Challenge

Dog Stuck on Tree Branch

Or Admit Defeat!

Dog Biting BumbleBiting Someone's Head Off
Dog Biting BumbleThen Almost Getting Yours Bit Off!
Dog Playing Ping Pong

Playing Puppy Ping Pong

Dog Playing Air Hockey

Then Moving on to Scoring Big Points!

Dog Wearing Angel WingsSometimes the Sweet Angel
Dog Wearing Angel WingsSometimes a Little Devil
Dog With Man Statue

Always Ready to Greet a Friendly Face

Dog With Pink Flamingos

Or Defend The Yard Against Flamboyant Invaders

Dog With Sandy NoseWorking on Keeping My Nose Clean
Dog With Sandy NoseAnd Not Sticking It Where It Doesn't Belong

Don’t feel bad for laughing at your dog. They might just be laughing at you too. Konrad Lorenz, a Nobel Prize winning ethnologist, believes that dogs do laugh and here’s how you can recognize it and maybe even learn to laugh with them. Give it a try!

Tell us why your dog makes you laugh and share your photo with us below. Even though some studies show that dogs make people laugh more than cats, we’re not so sure about that. I love them both, so feel free to upload those funny feline pics too!

Is Your Dog Stressed Out?

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Is Your Dog Stressed Out?

Photo by localpups / CC BY 2.0

We all know that too much stress can be harmful to our mental and physical health. So, to celebrate Stress Awareness Month this April, let’s focus on creating some new, healthy habits to reduce our stress and anxiety levels. Spending quality time with our pets certainly helps and maybe you’ve even wished you could trade places with your dog during stressful times in your life. It may seem like our pups have it made, going about their business with not a care in the world while all their needs are being met by you. But the truth is, our pets do feel stress sometimes and too much of it can affect their health and well-being too. Is your dog stressed out and you don’t even realize it?

Is Your Dog Stressed Out?

Observing your dog’s body language is the easiest way to tell if they’re feeling anxious. Here are the most common signs to look for:

  • Panting
  • Pacing or Restlessness
  • Yawning
  • Lip Licking or Drooling
  • Sweaty Paws
  • Scratching
  • Tense Body or Hypervigilance
  • Tucked Tail
  • Raised Hackles
  • Excessive Barking or Whining
  • Shedding Hairs
  • Uninterested in Playing or Eating
  • Repetitive or Destructive Behaviors (Digging, Chewing, etc.)
  • Hiding or Trying to Escape
  • Shaking or Trembling
  • Agitation or Aggressive Behaviors
  • Urination, Vomiting or Diarrhea

That’s quite a list of symptoms ranging from very subtle to severe, but any behavior that’s not normal for your dog could mean they’re feeling stressed.

What Makes Dogs Stressed?

Scared Dog

Photo by Thomas Leuthard / CC BY 2.0

There are obvious stress inducers for most dogs, like visiting the vet, groomer or staying at a kennel. Traveling or changes in routine can also create anxiety for our pups. Other common culprits are loud noises, thunderstorms, physical pain or trauma and staying home alone. Dogs are also affected by stressful events in our lives, like moving to a new home, divorce or new family members coming into the home (human or other pets).

Other events that can trigger anxiety might not be as obvious. Boredom, exuberant play sessions, overexcitement, meeting new people or dogs and socializing puppies are a few examples of situations where you might not realize your dog could be feeling stressed. There’s no way to avoid all stressors but there are ways to limit excess anxiety for you and your dog. Here are ten easy ways you can work on it together!

10 Ways You and Your Dog Can De-Stress Together

1. Relax
Enjoy some downtime together by petting your dog or giving him a relaxing massage. You’ll soon notice that both of you are feeling much happier and less stressed. You could even try meditating with your dog or practicing mindfulness exercises. To better help your dog, check out TTouch exercises or the helpful advice in Grow Young With Your Dog.
2. Exercise
Physical exercise is very effective for releasing endorphins and reducing stress in both people and their pups. Whether you take a walk or head outside for an active game of fetch, moving together will make both of you feel healthier and happier. Exercise is especially helpful for dogs that suffer from separation anxiety and don’t forget about providing mental stimulation exercises and games for your dog too.
3. Lower Your Voice
Whether you’re yelling at your dog or vocalizing frustrations about your day to someone else, take a break and practice some deep breathing exercises for a few moments to calm down. Yelling at your dog only creates confusion and breaks down trust. Rather than repeatedly saying “No!” to your pup while shaking your finger in his face, work on positive, productive and peaceful approaches to dealing with his frustrating behaviors.
4. Work on Training
You can eliminate most of the frustration and stress from your dog’s unwanted behavior by working more on training so he understands your expectations and will demonstrate good manners. Also, be consistent about enforcing the rules of the house so your pup doesn’t get confused or stressed.
5. Protect Your Pup
Step in and protect your dog in situations where he might feel uncomfortable or anxious. Many dogs get stressed when meeting strangers or energetic children. Others may feel anxious when forced to greet or interact with dogs they may not like. By preventing a negative interaction, you’ll both avoid unnecessary stress. If you’re socializing a puppy, work at a pace that’s comfortable for them so they don’t feel pressured.
6. Take a Nap
Lie down next to your pooch and enjoy an afternoon snooze together. Just remember to let sleeping dogs lie while they’re dozing. It can be stressful on a dog to suddenly be jolted awake from a deep sleep.
7. Reduce Household Stress
When you’re feeling overloaded or anxious, your dog may pick up on your stress. Whether they shy away from you or want to jump in your lap, take your dog’s reaction as a cue to practice some relaxation techniques. If there’s a lot going on in your household at the moment, make sure your dog has a safe place to retreat to and relax.
8. Keep a Consistent Routine
As much as we sometimes like to break out of a rut, routines help keep us grounded and our pets especially feel more comfortable when they have a predictable routine. Major disruptions to a dog’s routine can be very stressful.
9. Accept Your Dog
Don’t fight nature by expecting your pooch to act more like a person than a dog. Accept your pup and all of his canine qualities and you’ll be less stressed when he exhibits those typical dog behaviors like barking, chewing, digging, chasing cats or even being an opportunist around food. Work more on training and find desirable or creative outlets for unwanted behaviors.
10. Provide Balance
Strive to create harmony through balance. Too much of anything, even good things, can cause stress. For example, overstimulating your dog with too much excitement can cause excess adrenaline and stress. Too much exercise or activity can be just as bad as too little exercise and can lead to obsessive behaviors. Make sure your pup has plenty of downtime and relaxation as well as fun and exercise.

Relaxed Dog

Photo by alan miles / CC BY 2.0

Every dog is different. Just like some people suffer more from anxiety, so do some dogs. If your pup is unusually anxious and none of these methods help, check with your vet to make sure there’s not a medical reason for their symptoms of stress, especially if you have an older dog that might be experiencing pain from an injury or arthritis. Consulting with a holistic vet can offer additional treatment options for calming anxiety, like herbal and nutritional supplements, aromatherapy, acupuncture and more.

I hope you take some time this month to focus on lowering the stress level for both you and your dog. Stress will always be a part of our lives but we can keep it at a healthy level by practicing these and other relaxation methods.

Is your dog stressed out? Share your thoughts and stress-reducing techniques in the comment section below!

My Favorite Global Pet Expo Products 2017

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My Favorite Global Pet Expo ProductsFrom food to fashion and everything in between, the 2017 Global Pet Expo had it all and I was thrilled to be there this year to take it all in!

I was glad to see the ever-expanding field of healthy food/treats and health-related products. Probiotics, herbal remedies and hemp-based products are gaining in popularity. Healthy chews and other products to support oral health were plentiful at the show as well as companies offering mud and mineral-based shampoos and products to promote healthy skin and silky coats.

Browsing booth after booth of fun and dazzling dog merchandise was so exciting. There were so many new products and cool things I hadn’t seen before. I especially loved seeing all of the accessories designed for active adventure dogs. I’m always drawn to technology products and I wasn’t disappointed with the latest ideas coming from companies from all over the world. It was hard to narrow down all the wonderful offerings from the show, but here are my favorite Global Pet Expo products for 2017!

My Favorite Global Pet Expo Products!

Pillstashios


PillstashiosPillstashios – If you struggle with getting your dog to take medication, look no further than Pillstachios! This is a food-based container with Stash, Snap and Serve technology. Put your dog’s pill, liquid or powder medication inside, snap it shut and serve. The Pillstashio hides the taste and scent of the pill and comes in Apple Bacon, Blueberry Chicken or Cranberry Turkey flavors. Made in the USA from all natural, grain-free, gluten and soy free ingredients and comes in two sizes.

SleepypodSleepypod – I’ve been looking for a high quality, safety-tested harness for Haley to use while we’re traveling and I believe I’ve finally found it! Sleepypod makes safety a priority and their products meet the highest safety standards. Every Sleepypod carrier and harness received top safety ratings from the Center for Pet Safety. Their own test dog, Duke 2.0, has even better instrumentation for verifying testing data and improved product design. Their pods can be used as a bed, a carrier, or a safe car seat for traveling.


Le SharmaLe Sharma – The colorful, eco-friendly toys and beds from Le Sharma are not only adorable but they’re made from chemical-free, 100% natural wool and dyes and are machine washable. Le Sharma products are handmade from artisan earthquake victim women in Nepal. Bonus: The toys also clean your dog’s teeth!


Pet House CandlesPet House Candles – Okay, this product is more for you rather than your dog, but if your house is smelling a little “doggy”, One Fur All has you covered. Their soy candles and scent-based products are designed and guaranteed to neutralize pet odors and they’re made with pet-safe ingredients.


PetkitPetKit – I really like these two Petkit products, the Eversweet Smart Pet Drinking Fountain and the Fresh Metal bowl. The Eversweet quietly circulates and purifies your pup’s water and will send an alert when it’s low. It’s easy to fill and also has a light sensor for even quieter nighttime operation. The antibacterial Fresh bowls come in both metal and plastic models with a variety of designs. They weigh your dog’s food portion and can make feeding amount suggestions.


LeashesThree Great Dog Walking Products
If you struggle with a pulling dog like I do, you’ll love these three products!
On the left we have Gismo for you gadget lovers. It’s everything you need for your walk held in one hand (a poop bag dispenser and clip to hold a used bag and a sliding carabiner for a more comfortable walk). Its multi-function connectables option allows you to customize the Gismo for different functions, like adding a flashlight, treat container, clicker or dual leash holder.
In the center is a short, bungee leash called The Heeler by BihlerFlex. It’s perfect for when you need to keep your dog close but it will also stretch two times its length for less stress on you and your dog when pulling. It’s made in the USA, has a lifetime warranty and comes in several colors.
Rounding out the trio is the Classic Rok elastic leash on the right by Rok. Again, this is perfect for reducing stress on you and your dog when they pull on the leash. I love the colorful designs and matching collars that are available for each design.


Himalayan CorporationHimalayan Corporation – If the traditional, hard cheese Himalayan chews are too hard for your dog, there are now some new options for your pup. YakyPuffs are bite-sized chews you puff up in the microwave before serving to your dog. YakyYums are a softer chew with added potato starch and YakyChurros are even softer yet. All cheese products have natural enzymes to help remove plaque from your dog’s teeth and they’re naturally gluten and grain free with lactose removed during the cooking process. Himalayan’s new Leanlix are an innovative and portable, low calorie reward and training tool that can be licked by dogs.


Ochah Mud ScrubOchah Mineral Pet Care – I love this line of Dead Sea mineral shampoos and mud scrubs. They are rich in minerals, natural extracts and oils and come in various formulas. The products are also healthy for your pup as they prevent hair loss, repair damaged tissue, promote blood circulation, reduce joint inflammation and stress, and help eliminate dandruff, itching, scratching and hot spots. On top of the health benefits, they leave your dog’s coat soft and silky and your hands soft and moisturized.


PetEgo Upet TentPetEgo – Have you ever seen one of those small demo versions of a tent in a sporting goods store and wished you could buy it for your dog? Now you can! This Italian company specializes in active lifestyle products for you and your dog. The UPet Tent is not only adorable but it’s super functional as a portable pet house, car containment system and outdoor tent. It has claw-proof mesh windows and an umbrella opening and closing mechanism so it pops up in seconds. It includes a messenger bag for easy transport. Even if you’re not a camper, what pet wouldn’t love this as a bed?


Hurtta Slush Combat Suit


Hurtta Sun and Bug BlockerHurtta – While we’re on the topic of enjoying the great outdoors, Hurtta has a lot of really cool products for active adventure dogs, no matter what the weather. Their Slush Combat Suit and Sun and Bug Blocker are just a few options they offer. I can think of several occasions when both of these would have come in handy for Haley. Hurtta also offers a full range of products from rainwear, clothing, cooling products, leashes, harnesses and collars.

Pura Naturals Pet Feeding SetPura Naturals Pet – This feeding set caught my eye because of its eco-friendly design and feeding tray. They are made from American-grown rice hulls and are non-skid, formaldehyde and BPA free, dishwasher safe and made in the USA. The unique design means it’s less likely to support mold growth and I like how the bowls fit into the grooves on the tray so they don’t slide around. The set comes in three different colors.


Canada PoochCanada Pooch – Your pup can stay warm in style with the quality jackets, vests, sweaters, rainwear and boots offered by Canada Pooch! None of their products are made from any animal-derived materials and you can be assured these items are both highly fashionable and functional.


Chilly DogChillyDog – Speaking of chilly dogs, Chillydog also carries a wonderful line of sweaters and accessories for chilly dogs.


True Leaf Pet Hemp
True Leaf Pet Oregano

TrueLeafPet – There are two lines of products from True Leaf Pets, a hemp-based (non-CBD) line and their new oregano-based line of products. Don’t worry, hemp is not marijuana and won’t get your pet high, but it does offer potential health benefits for dogs with anxiety, arthritis/joint issues, seizures, pain, skin issues, inflammation, digestive issues or cancer symptoms. The oregano line of products are beneficial for ear care, oral health and skin/coat health.


Petrageous Thinkrageous Treat BankPetRageous Designs – PetRageous makes some really fun products for your pooch and I particularly like the design of their ThinkRageous Treat Bank. It’s perfect for dogs that tend to master treat dispensing toys too quickly. It has an internal maze for treats which means your pup has to work longer to get those yummy tidbits to come out.



Molly Mutt – Your dog will love being close to the scent of your old clothes or pillows and you will love the beautiful cover designs that Molly Mutt has to offer. The eco-friendly bed design makes it easy to wash when necessary. There’s also an optional inner armor liner and pillow pack for more comfort.


Aromadog Silk Road Oils
Aromadog Toys

Aromadog and Aromadog
The names are the same but the companies and products are different.
On the left is Aromadog (Silk Road Oils) specializing in aromatherapy products. They offer a full range of fine products made from human-grade oils, including their popular Chill Out oil. Aromadog on the right is a product line of stuffed toys by McCann Pet Group that deliver long lasting scent to help dogs with excess energy or separation anxiety.


Dogs Love KaleDogs Love Kale – Kale for dogs? Yes! Paula Savarese and Dawn Ward teamed up to bring your dog healthy kale and snap pea treats that are full of vitamins and antioxidants. Not only are they healthy, but they’re human grade and low calorie snacks made right here in the USA. These are great limited ingredient treats for dogs with allergies or digestive issues!


Healthy Essentials Probiotic SprayHealthy Essentials Probiotic Food Spray – We’re all discovering how valuable probiotics are for us humans and our pets alike and now there’s a convenient way to dispense a daily dose onto your dog’s food. This all natural spray contains 11 strains of live, active probiotics. The spray tastes great, is cost effective and doesn’t need to be refrigerated.


Pet CakesPetCakes – There’s no need to wait for a special occasion or your dog’s birthday to treat them to a special doggie dessert. PetCakes are the first and only microwavable treats you can make at home in minutes. They offer cake mixes and molds and also a new line of frozen treats. PetCakes are vet approved and contain human-grade ingredients but no corn, wheat, soy, salt, sugar or preservatives.


Max And Lucy Dry ShampooMax & Lucy Dry Shampoo – This dry shampoo is perfect for when your dog needs a quick freshening up or when it’s not convenient to give them a full bath. Just fill the bulb with the essential oil encapsulated powder then squeeze the bulb onto your dog’s coat and massage. No water is needed and it comes in three fragrances: Lavender, Orange & Lemongrass, and Rosemary & Thyme. The powder contains no chemicals or synthetic fragrances and the Rosemary & Thyme version even helps keep ticks and bugs away from your pup.


Up CountryUp Country – One of my favorite fashion accessory exhibitors was Up Country! For 30 years they’ve been creating and selling their stylish line of pet products of over 120 collar designs and dozens of lifestyle accessories. Most of their products are hand sewn, pressed and finished in Rhode Island. Their attention to detail and the fact that they stand behind all of their products makes them an expo favorite.


Spunky Pup WibbleezSpunkyPup – The new Wibbleez from Spunky Pup looks like a winner for Haley! They squeak, they stretch, they’re durable and they’re super cute. As a matter of fact, the whole line of Spunky Pup toys look really fun and interesting.


PAWS PizzeriaPAWS Pizzeria – You no longer have to feel guilty while eating pizza in front of your pooch. Order their very own Dog Pizza or order by the slice. The pizzas are grain free and made from chicken and sweet potato, all sourced and made in the USA and only 70 calories a slice. So go ahead, share a slice of pizza with your best friend!


Pet Winery


Pet WineryPetWinery – What’s pizza without a beer to go with it, right? Have your dog belly up to the Dog Bar at the Pet Winery and order him a vitamin-enriched, non-alcoholic Bark Brew or Dog Perignon. All PetWinery products are 100% organic, sourced from the USA and manufactured in an ISO7 food-grade clean room. The Bark Brew also has glucosamine for hip and joint health.

The Global Pet Expo featured a vast number of pet food companies and most of them offer quality, healthy options for your pet’s diet. I usually don’t offer recommendations or reviews on food but Carna4 and Blackwood are two companies that I might look into further. Carna4 offers quick-baked and air-dried real food with no synthetics. Blackwood offers all-natural, handcrafted, small batch slow-cooked food that’s made in the USA.

Dog Eating Crab CookieThis year’s Global Pet Expo was a huge, record-breaking success and I loved every minute of it! Unfortunately, Haley wasn’t allowed inside but she was rewarded for her patience with lots of treat samples and plenty of romping and swimming on the beautiful beaches of Florida.

There were so many wonderful exhibitors at the expo. I wish I had room to highlight many more of them here but watch for some additional posts later this year as I take a closer look at some other products featured at the show. If you’re interested, here’s a look back at highlights from the final day. I can’t wait to attend again next year and to my fellow bloggers, I hope to meet up with you there next March!

What type of new products do you love finding for your dog?

The 2017 Global Pet Expo!

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The 2017 Global Pet ExpoLast year, I was planning on attending the Global Pet Expo but unfortunately we had to cancel our plans after Haley tore her CCL and needed surgery right before the show. I was so disappointed to miss the event last year, but I’m thrilled to be here today at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Florida to discover all the latest and greatest finds at the largest annual pet products trade show.

The Global Pet Expo is presented by the American Pet Products Association (APPA) and Pet Industry Distributors Association (PIDA) and this year’s show is setting a new record with 3,435 booths and 1,130 exhibitors (27% being international companies). The show covers an area of about 13 football fields in size and is filled with products for all types of pets. This year there will be 223 first-time exhibiting companies and more than 3,000 new product launches. I can’t wait to check out all of these exciting, new products today!

I’ll be sharing my favorite products from the show in next week’s post but if you want to follow along over the next three days, view some highlights from the expo on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube or Pinterest! You can also use the #GlobalPetExpo hashtag on several of these social media platforms to discover even more exciting details from the show.

Do you love finding new toys, treats, accessories or other products for your pup? Share some of your favorite finds with us in the comment section below!