Overall Spencer is a well-behaved, charming and easy dog. However, that does not mean he does not have his ‘quirks.’ He also has some anxiety and separation issues. I’ve tried many products to help manage those issues. I came across the Calming Collar in a magazine and reached out to see if Spencer would benefit from it.
|(Image retrieved from the Calming Collar website)|
The Calming Collar is a customized cloth collar filled with a blend of natural herbs. The combination of these herbs help your dog with different issues. It is easy to use. All you need to do is clip it around your dog’s neck (as you would a collar), adjust the straps and let the aromatherapy do its work.
The Calming Collar offers three different collars to target three different target issues: Calm Me Down, Good to go, and Too Cool. In this review I will be focusing on the Calm Me Down Collar.
- Separation anxiety
- Fear of thunderstorms and other bad weather
- Fireworks or other loud noises
- Stress and stressful situations such as going to the groomers
- Excessive barking
- So much more!
Other facts about the collar:
- If the collar is worn 24/7, the herbs will last 3 to 4 months. If only used a few hours a day or less, it could last up to a year.
- It comes with a sealed bag you can store your collar when it is not in use.
- Surface clean only with damp cloth.
- You can choose from over 40 different fabrics.
- The adjustable buckles are nice since Spencer’s hair grows and it can be adjusted accordingly.
- A variety of different fabric chooses to chose from to fit you and your dog’s personalities.
- All natural herbs, no oils or chemicals.
- Wonderful communication with the company!
- At first this collar’s aroma is strong, if you are sensitive to smells that maybe an initial concern.
- It comes with a informational sheet, I wish they would include how long the collar last and if it is okay for them to sleep with it. (This information is on their website.)
Written by my mom in honor of Belle.
In 1996, my father entered a contest through a farming magazine called “The Great American Farm Dog Contest.” Actually, I should note that my mother ‘encouraged’ him to enter the contest about why he felt he could use a service dog.
Perhaps it would be best to give a little back story to why my father would enter such a contest. In June 1986, my father was involved in a motorcycle/car accident on his way home from work. A car failed to stop at a stop sign and ran directly into my father, who then flew off his motorcycle and into a nearby ditch. The accident left him a paraplegic. Never one to be told he couldn’t do something or be held back from something he loved to do, he continued to farm once he got out of the hospital for the last time in February 1987. Through creating and adding various, and at first quite crude, lifts onto many of the farm machinery and equipment, he was back in the field within a year. Of course there were things he relied on other people to help him with but, for the most part, he adapted to his situation.
Fast-forward to 1996 and the contest, my mother thought he had a chance to win. Of the hundreds of applicants, my father won. The grand prize was a three-week trip to Independence, Pennsylvania to have a service dog trained and assigned by Independence Dog, Inc. If you are wondering how a dog would assist a person with a wheelchair, I found the following description:
Wheelchair Dogs are trained to assist a person with strong upper body function who uses a wheelchair. They are taught to pull their partners up ramps and to support their partners as they transfer from a wheelchair to another chair, car, or bed. They can even help their partner get back into the wheelchair after a fall. Since dogs are not color-blind, they can identify objects, such as books or clothes, by color. These dogs are also trained to open heavy doors, pop wheelchairs over high curbs, and carry packages or books in their specially constructed backpacks.
My family went to Pennsylvania and were set up in a house where the dog training facility was located. The dog assigned to my father was Belle – a golden retriever. Our family had always had dogs but we never had a golden retrievers. Belle was the typical golden retriever with a quite and calm demeanor and soft, fluffy fur that one could use as a pillow (and blanket!) on those cold nights. Most of the time we were there, the trainers would work with Belle and my father. Soon they became quite the pair as Belle identified her new master. We would go on day trips together so Belle and my father could adapt to different environments together. The three weeks went very quickly and soon we were on our way back to Minnesota. On the plane ride home, Belle said on the floor of the plane next to my father’s seat.
Once we were home, Belle enjoyed the openness of the farm and took an avid interest in the pigs. Luckily, she ignored the farm cats and soon they ignored her as well. My father and Belle were quite a pair as she sat next to him in his Kawasaki Mule and even in the combine and enclosed tractors.
One time, my father was feed in the pigs and as he was pushing up the small hill to the house, he slid on ice and tipped over. At the time my sister and I were in the house, suddenly we heard Belle barking – she never barked. We looked out the window to see her in the front yard looking at us and barking. She would then run towards the barn and back to the house, barking the entire time. We knew that something was wrong. After getting on boots and coats we headed to the barn with Belle leading the way. If she had not informed us that he had fell, who knows how long my father would have been out there on the snow and ice.
In February 2005, Belle passed away of cancer. As she got older, my father ‘retired’ her from her service dog duties but never as his faithful companion. It is always difficult to say “Goodbye” to our furry family members, but saying it to Belle was heartbreaking. She epitomized the saying “man’s best friend.” Since my family had Belle, they have since had/have mostly Golden Retrievers (with the recent exception of Louie). And all have been rescues. Belle still has a special place in the house as seen in the photographs. Her ashes, collar and Service Dog harness along with photographs of her and my father are positioned throughout my parents’ house.
Belle was “The Great American Farm Dog” and we still miss her dearly.
Buying pet costumes can be expensive and you can only use them once, maybe twice a year. Have you ever thought about buying children dress-up clothes, costumes, or outfits and use them for the your pet?
|(Spencer is very upset that the pizza slices are not real…)|
In 2011, Spencer went as a Pizza Chef! It was only logical since he’s known for stealing a slice here and there when your back is turned.
I went on Etsy.com, a online “marketplace” with over hundreds of thousand seller. I came a cross this one seller, Key2Life, who makes customized aprons and chiefs hats for children. After a brief conversation letting her know what I was looking for, Spencer’s hat and apron were on their way! Once I put them on him I know we had a winning look.
Rounding the look off we made a t-shirt (mens M) that stated “For pickup or delivery call 1-800-SPENCER,” and we reused his boys size 8 jeans from the year before. We also added in a felt pizza. When everything is combined, Spencer becomes our Chief Taste Tester!
After Halloween, kids can play dress-up with the hat, apron, and pizza. And parts of the costume (such as the jeans) can be saved for another Halloween costume.
I know that “dog shaming” was a fad months ago and, while some of the photos are kinda cute, it’s not something I was totally sold on. Many of them said more about their human than about their furry selves. Some of the photos just screamed “TOO MUCH INFORMATION!”
I guess this is the moment where you can point at me and shout “HYPOCRITE!” The photo below is what I first saw after work. The worse part was that Spencer was just so darn proud of himself. As if he was searching it for hidden poison or some toy at the bottom of the box.
It was like he was standing on the top of a massive snow pile, banging his chest and yelling “I’M THE KING OF THE WORLD!” As if the crackers, two different kinds of cereal, peanut butter and fish batter was his Mount Everest.
In the end it makes for an interesting photo but the chances are good that he will have to be monitored for a few hours and have to have frequent trips outside if you get my drift…
Do you have any pictures of your dog getting into mischief? Or come home to a mess? Please share your pictures or stories so I don’t feel quite so irresponsible!
Having been a nurse for almost 7 years now, I could tell you what shots you need and when you need them. But, vaccinations for you puppy or dog, I have no idea what they get and when they get them. The vet that I go to is wonderful about reminding me when Spencer is due for his next visit and which shots he needs. Below is a list of the vaccinations, what they protect and approximately when they should be given. If you are unsure or have any questions contact your veterinarian, they will ultimately be your best resource.
A dog drops on average poops 3/4 pounds of waste daily. That means if your town has 730 dogs that is approximately 550 pounds of dog waste is generated each day! Even if half of that was picked up daily that is still 225 pounds of poop! Yuck, that is a lot of POOP!!!
- You can use a scooper method, bag method or shovel to pick up the poop.
- Make sure you put it in a bag and seal it before placing it in the trash.
- Do Not compost your pet waste!
It is every pet owner’s responsibility to clean up after their pet. So join me and Spencer and head to your local dog park, favorite trails, or just around you neighborhood and “Be a Scooper Hero” by cleaning it up.
Here are 5 reasons dog owners must Scoop That Poop.
This is the 2nd Scoop That Poop blog hop. There are many other fantastic blogs participating, so make sure to check them out as well by clicking their links below.