Saturday, May 28, 2011

This Party's Going to the Dogs!

This time last year, Scott and I knew we were going to lose our "Princess Autumn Bell" to a rare form of cancer: bile-ductular carcinoma, diagnosed in less than 2 percent of dogs. To this day I can't speak Autumn's name in a sentence without wanting to cry. Watching a beloved dog, a family member, wasting away and dying from cancer, knowing there's absolutely nothing you can do, is one of the worst experiences any dog parent can ever experience.

Three years ago I decided to get on board with Morris Animal Foundation's Canine Cancer Campaign. I thought it would be a "fun" and "good" thing to do. Well, now I'm on a personal mission to help fund research to find a cure for canine cancer. There is nothing "fun" and "good" about cancer, in ourselves as humans, and in our pets.

One in four dogs will die from cancer, the No.1 killer in dogs over the age of 2. If you share your life with dogs, you WILL lose one dog, if not many more, from cancer. Ten years ago my dog Niki was diagnosed with hemangiosarcoma, so Autumn's death was not the first time canine cancer has touched my life.

My friend Kelly Smith is a Scentsy Independent Consultant. Kelly has a huge heart and began her Scentsy business in memory of her mother, Anne, who died suddenly last year from pancreatic cancer. I'm so proud to know Kelly and so excited that Kelly's generously offered to donate 40% of her commissions to help me raise funds for research to find a cure for canine cancer. So not only are you helping the dogs, you're helping to find a cure for pancreatic cancer!

Now through July 31st, purchase Scentsy candle products through our online Angels for Autumn party, and have a portion of the sales proceeds donated to Morris Animal Foundation's Canine Cancer Campaign.

Please cross-post to all your dog-loving friends and family members and be an angel for all the dogs! Thank you all so much for your love and support! ♥

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Animal Abuse: Let's Get A Plan In Place To Stop It

I feel abuse of animals is a learned behavior. Children grow up to be animal abusers because of what they're taught by peers, by their parents, or what they are NOT taught at home or in school. They're taught by seeing on TV that a pro football player like Michael Vick can serve a jail sentence for abuse but then get rewarded by a multimillion-dollar contract to play football again.

I feel since education at home may be lacking, the already underpaid and overworked teachers need to take on some of the task of educating their students, and parents need to contribute to the task of teaching their children that abusing animals is NOT okay.

How do teachers and parents begin to even find humane education resources and tools? A good start is by visiting The Humane Society Web site.

Here parents and teachers can learn how to educate kids, engage teenagers, inspire teens, receive Humane Educator training, receive lesson plans, and more.

Humane Educators are sometimes part of your local county's government. You can make an appointment with the humane education department of the county to pay a visit to an elementary school at no, or very little, cost.

Meanwhile, for the home, find some very inexpensive ways of engaging and teaching children how to care for and be kind to dogs, cats, and wildlife with these Humane Education Activity and Coloring Books, which will help teach humane values, create empathy, and can even inspire compassionate action.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Microchipping Your Pet and Cancer Risks? is one of several Web sites these days to warn pet owners and the general public about the possible associated dangers of microchip implants in pets.

Learn the possible risks of microchipping your pets, facts, scientific evidence, case studies, legislation regarding microchipping, how to report a suspected or known cancer case associated with microchipping, and more at this
Animal Adverse Microchip Reactions site.

Also read a most excellent article by The Dog on the medical reasons not to microchip your pet and why you should please consider NOT doing so.

Sure, microchips can sometimes help recover your lost pet, but you need to be aware of the possible medical implications involved.

Please know what you're dealing with BEFORE agreeing to let anyone microchip your pet! Nothing in this world is 100% safe. You should always know all possible adverse risks and reactions of anything you expose yourself and your pets to. Be safe, not sorry!

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Rainbow Bridge Poem

Just this side of Heaven is a place called Rainbow Bridge.

When an animal dies that has been especially close to someone here, that pet goes to Rainbow Bridge. There are meadows and hills for all of our special friends so they can run and play together. There is plenty of food, water and sunshine, and our friends are warm and comfortable. All the animals who had been ill and old are restored to health and vigor. Those who were hurt or maimed are made whole and strong again, just as we remember them in our dreams of days and times gone by. The animals are happy and content, except for one small thing; they each miss someone very special to them, who had to be left behind.

They all run and play together, but the day comes when one suddenly stops and looks into the distance. His bright eyes are intent. His eager body quivers. Suddenly he begins to run from the group, flying over green grass, his legs carrying him faster and faster...

You have been spotted, and when you and your special friend finally meet, you cling together in joyous reunion, never to be parted again. The happy kisses rain upon your face; your hands again caress the beloved head, and you look once more into the trusting eyes of your pet, so long gone from your life but never absent from your heart.

Then you cross Rainbow Bridge together...

~ Author Unknown

Sarah's Angels Pet With Angel Keepsakes

When you're a pet parent, you feel like your pet is an angel. When that pet dies, your pet becomes an angel in Heaven that you know.

Losing an animal companion is one of the most stressful and heart-breaking events one can experience in life. When the beautiful spirit of a beloved pet has gone to the Rainbow Bridge the devastating grief and/or guilt one may feel can be overwhelming. I know. I've been there and understand.

Sarah's Angels Collectibles always make a meaningful sympathy gift for a pet parent. Animal-angel keepsake gifts are hard to find. Sarah's Angels figurines will always be cherished and will provide a source of comfort for years to come for the pet parent's grieving heart.

I like being surrounded by the memories of my angel dogs with their pictures and with my Sarah's Angels figurines. Read how I am Displaying Sarah's Angels Collection in my home.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Rachael Hale Pet Lover Ecards

When you want to send an electronic greeting card to an animal loving friend or loved one, check out the free ecards from Rachael Hale. These ecards include friendship, sympathy, marriage, Christmas, birthday, and more.

The Rachael Hale e-cards are so cute. Check them out. You're going to love them.

How to Make a Dog Cookie Arrangement

This past summer I created my Bow Wow Blooming Cookies arrangement for a friend's dog who was getting ready to go through obedience training. Like a lot of people, I don't have time to bake, but I wanted to create a memorable dog cookie bouquet.

Here are the materials I used that you will also use to create this unique dog cookie "flower" arrangement. Remember, all the goodies in this arrangement are for the dog!

1. Paw print Snapware dog treats container purchased at a local Petsmart.

2. Small organic bone-shaped dog training treats purchased at a local pet spa boutique. Purchase a big enough box or bag to fill the entire inside of the Snapware container with the training treats.

3. Premade organic dog cookies, as pictured here, purchased at a local pet spa boutique. You can purchase premade cookies in many different shapes and sizes and are limited only by your imagination.

4. Tissue paper in various colors to match the dog cookies. As this was a summer arrangement, I used two tones of several sheets of green tissue paper.

5. Floral foam purchased at a local craft store.

6. Wilson lollipop covers (or cellophane bags) purchased at a local craft store. Check the baking aisle for the appropriate size clear cellophane bags you need AFTER you've purchased the dog cookies.

7. Extra-long Wilson lollipop sticks purchased at a local craft store. (These can be trimmed down to the appropriate height to keep the dog cookies above the top of the container yet should be able to securely fit into the floral foam.)

8. Green cloth ribbon, purchased at a local craft store. This ribbon is used to tie the cellophane bag at the base of the cookie to the stick and is used as a decoration.

9. Optional print cellophane used like the tissue paper for a decorative accent. The paw print cellophane is what I use in my gift shop for wrapping pet gift baskets and what I used here, but it cannot be found in a craft store.

10. Clear cellophane tape.

11. Decorative cloth ribbon tied into a bow to cover the lid of the Snapware container.

To start, cut a chunk of the floral foam with a knife (to fit in the center of the container) and wrap the foam in cellophane like it is a present. Wrapping the foam in cellophane protects the treats from the foam. This chunk of floral foam is then taped on its bottom to the middle of the inside of the Snapware container. (Don't worry if the foam is somewhat wobbly as once the cookie stems are placed into it and the treats added to fill the container, the foam will stay in place.)

Once the floral foam is secure at the bottom of the container, add enough of the small dog bone treats to fill the bottom sides of the container to meet the top edge of the floral foam. As you add each cookie stem, add treats to cover the cookie stems, and so on until all cookie stems are arranged the way you want them, secure in the foam, and treats fill the entire container up to where the bottom of the lid meets the container. Be sure as you're gradually adding the treats that you check all sides of the container to make sure there are no gaps. You don't want to see the cookie stems.

Take each sheet of tissue paper, gather it as per the video, and add the sheets of tissue paper between each cookie stem. Push the bottom edge of the tissue into the dog treats.

Watch this YouTube video by Karen's Cookies and see just how easy it is to make your own dog cookie arrangement. The video will fill in the gaps that I missed here.

You may use any type of container or mug and use however many cookies you desire. Again, just use your imagination and create something spectacular and one-of-a-kind!