Category Archives: Welcome

What Are Cats For?

The most important things in my life, not necessarily in order, are my family, my health, my work, my dog, my friends and my yoga. Yes, yoga. It keeps me in touch with my body and mind, slows down the aging process, and is just plain good for you. I heartily recommend it to everyone.

You may have noticed that I didn’t include the cat in my list. I guess he’s OK, but I’m afraid I’m just not a cat person. Or maybe it’s this cat. I dunno, but we just don’t see eye to eye. Nevertheless, I feed him twice a day, let him in when he wants in, let him out when he wants out, make sure his water dish is full, worry about him when there are coyotes around, and enjoy the absence of mice in the basement. So it goes.

Xylitol Warning

My local news last night reported on a pet ferret that got into a pack of sugar-free gum and died from eating the Xylitol it contained.  This seemed kind of far-fetched to me, so I checked it out.  Turns out this very common sugar-substitute is indeed fatal to animals.  I know my dogs have gotten into my purse to pull out gum before, but they are so big, I guess it wasn’t enough to hurt them. 

The Knowles Animal Clinic in Miami has this to say on the subject:

“Xylitol is a sugar alcohol that is used in sugar-free products such as gum and candy, as well as for baking and is used in the production of certain low-carbohydrate products now on the market.

As early as the 1960’s, experiments indicated a link between the ingestion of xylitol
and hypoglycemia in dogs. However, it has only been recently that the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center has begun to receive reports of xylitol toxicosis in dogs. It is believed that this recent rise is likely due to the increased use of products containing xylitol in the United States.”


When a dog eats Xylitol, it causes a huge insulin rush, throwing the dog into a coma similar to how a diabetic ends up when his blood sugar gets too low.  In as little as 30 minutes, your dog may begin to show the symptoms such as : 

    • Weakness

    • Vomiting

    • Ataxia (uncoordinated movements)

    • Depression

    • Hypokalemia (decreased potassium)

    • Seizures

    • Coma

    • Liver dysfunction and/or failure

                              Pretty scary stuff!


So, until next time, keep that sugar-free candy and gum away from all of your pets.


Good day, and good dog!

New Blog Editor

Hello, readers!  My name is Beth (a/k/a The Dog Lady), and I have been asked to begin blogging on, so I  thought I’d start by telling you a bit about myself and the dogs I have known. 

I grew up with a beautiful tri-color collie named Lady.  A sweeter dog has never been born.  We got her when I was about 6 years old, and she passed after I had left for college, so I cannot imagine any part of my childhood without her.  Even though I have 5 human brothers and sisters, Lady was my best pal.  Seems like I was the one she always woke up at night when she had to go outside. 

Now that I’m grown and have my own kids, we have developed quite a menagerie.  In addition to three kids and two cats, we now have four dogs!  My oldest is Maggie, a 7-year old golden retriever.  When we got Maggie, we already had 2 or 3 dogs, but I really wanted a golden – the quintessential family dog.  One day, while we were driving through Amish Country in Ohio, we found a sign for a breeder, and stopped in, just to see what he had.  He met us at the door with, “I’m sorry – we don’t have any puppies right now.” 

“Perfect,” I said.  “We just got new carpet.  Would you happen to have any older dogs for sale?”

As it turns out, Maggie (then four years old) had been bred twice, but had never been able to bring down enough milk for her pups, so to a breeder, she wasn’t worth much.  So, we loaded her into the car for a bargain basement price and took her home to meet the kids.  She is so patient with them, and believe me, my kids are wild!

Next in line is Kayla, a mixed breed (probably shepherd and either chow or huskie – she’s got the curled tail).  She is five years old, but we’ve had her since she was a pup.  We got her the day BEFORE we found out we were getting a new foster infant.  I’d never do that again!  Kayla was my “out of mourning” dog after we lost our foxhound Molly to cancer.  We got her from a lady who takes in strays and had Kayla’s mom as a pregnant drop-off in the middle of the night. 

Third in line is 2-year old Cooper, a beautiful Vizsla from a breeder in Southern Ohio.  We drove about 5 hours each way to pick him up because we just had to have a Vizsla after being introduced to the breed at a relative’s house.  He is very active, and his best trick is holding down the picnic table whenever he’s in the back yard.  It’s his favorite perch – he can see the whole neighborhood.  No doubt mapping out his route for the next time the kids leave the gate open.


Last, but certainly not least, is my baby Beagle, Penny Layne.  She stands up pretty well, considering all the other dogs in the house weigh at least 3 times more than she does.  My middle son, who is autistic, has really taken to Penny.  I think we will train her for agility so Jimmy can work with her – it would be good for both of them!

So, that’s a little bit about the craziness that is my life.  I hope to share lots of stories with you through this blog.  I’ll be doing about five posts a week, so check back often.  I’ll do the surfing to find all the wild, wacky, funny, serious, and helpful information you need to know.  Between this blog, the rest of, and, you’ll have a full resource for everything dogs!

Good day and good dog!


Best Friends

Are you really taking good care of your dog? Let’s not forget that they’re totally dependent on us for their food, shelter, health and well-being. We took them away from nature and made pets out of them, and in doing so, we let them forget how to survive on their own. Let’s never forget that a dog is like a little baby, needing us through their entire lives. Continue reading Best Friends