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Category Archives: Dogs

Dogtique: Last of the Litter

Where could this little puppy be headed?

Last of the Litter print

This print is from my late grandfather’s collection of dogtiques.

I haven’t discovered much history about the print, entitled Last of the Litter. It is also represented online in a collection of prints commissioned by the Wilson Chemical Co. on a page managed by the Tyrone Area Historical Society.

My grandmother said that Fluffy, the dog she got in high school during the 1940s, once traveled across the country in a crate much like the one in the print.

Incidentally, a few days before snapping the photo of this print, I also encountered a similar old timey dog kennel. It was in the back room of a new antiques and curiosities shop in my neighborhood.

Check it out:

antique dog kennel

Can you make out the dog’s name?

antique dog kennel

Solid construction but not a posh accommodation.

antique dog kennel

For times of thirst…

My grandma said her Fluffy was pretty ragged by the end of her trip in this kind of crate. I’m not surprised.

I’m glad pet carriers have advanced since this model.

How do your pets travel?

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Local Treats: Porter’s Pet Pantry

Way back on Mother’s Day, I swung by the farmer’s market at City Market in Kansas City.

My goal was to pick up some fresh or potted flowers for my mama. But what I ended up with were chocolate linguine noodles, a hand-painted flower pot filled with six ounces of fudge and a bag of locally made dog treats.

Porter's Pet Pantry

The dog treats were for my pups. They came from Porter’s Pet Pantry, a local company I had not encountered before.

The family of Porter – a chocolate lab who inspired the business – makes a rather large line of wholesome dog snacks in a professional kitchen in the River Market.

Nate, who I chatted with, explained to me that the company started with liver slivers, a pure meat treat, and the offering has grown from there. What I took home for Luke and Scooby was unlike anything I have bought for them before: waffles.

Actually, these were Chicken-N-Waffles, little silver-dollar-sized waffle-shaped biscuits made with wholesome grains and real chicken. They were crunchy and, apparently, tasty.

They were eaten up before I thought to take a photograph and the packaging disappeared. Oh well, we will have to hit up Porter’s Pet Pantry again.

You can learn more about Porter’s Pet Pantry at the website and on Facebook.

Have you discovered any local treats lately?

Nice Day for a Ride

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Not everything is right in the world – particularly if you happen to live near the tornado path in Oklahoma.

But today in Kansas City, the sun is out, the breeze is sweet, and (in spite of some troubles of our own) we have plenty to be thankful for.

This little scene of two smiling dogs in a car will be repeated this morning, as I chauffeur Luke and Scooby to Kennel Creek Pet Resort.

I’m so glad they will be taken care of on a day when my plate at work is sure to be overflowing.

What are you grateful for today?

 

What Are Beer Paws?

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I have been obsessed with the idea of bottle openers for dog collars for quite a while now.

I first encountered a dog with bottle opener bling on the set of the Pet Pops video.

The notion amused and impressed me so much that I eventually outfitted Luke with a bottle opener.

golden retriever with bottle opener

At your service!

Then, it occurred to me that creating a line of bottle openers intended to be used by dog lovers would be a great way to spread around this fun idea while also supporting my personal projects and raising funds for animal rescue.

Voila! Beer Paws were born.

Luke Beer Paw

I officially founded the company with the state of Missouri this week.

The first round of button style bottle openers were a hit at the Cinco de Mayo Chihuahua parade, and I’ve already had some out of state orders.

Beer Paws bottle opener

Shiny collar bling for your dog.

At 2.5 inches, this particular style is a little big for small dog’s collars.

But it works great at the end of a leash, or even attached to your own bag or keys.

Reilly and Willow look good with Beer Paws!

Reilly and Willow look good with Beer Paws!

Eventually, I see the Beer Paws brand encompassing a little bit more than just bottle openers. But for now, that’s where I’m starting.

The official Beer Paws website will soon go live. In the meantime, please Like the Beer Paws fan page on Facebook.

Place your orders via the Wayward Dogs shop on Storenvy.

If you’re in Kansas City, you can also buy Beer Paws directly from me or from the following purveyors:

Kennel Creek Pet Resort

GoodDog2Go

I’d love to hear what you all think of this idea. Please share your thoughts in the comments or send me an e-mail!

What a Lovely Blue Velvet Coat

Meet Tessa

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This pretty little pittie girl used to live in unsavory circumstances in a house full of dogs. Then, she ended up on death row.

Lucky for her, Midwest Adopt-a-Bull recently saved her.

However, her foster home didn’t work out, and now blue Tessa is back to living in a cage.

Until we can find her a new foster or forever home, Tessa is in boarding at A Dog’s Fun Playce, a rescue center and doggy daycare in my neighborhood.

Her accommodations aren’t bad, but she sure was happy to get out over the weekend when I stopped by.

Although we had never met before, Tessa greeted me with a kiss before dragging me out of the shelter.

She’s a pocket pittie at just about 45 pounds, but Tessa is pure muscle, and she’s not yet used to walking on a leash. For the first half an hour, she pulled like a sled dog, but as she got tired, she walked more politely.

tessa pro

I know with more practice, she will be a great walking or jogging companion.

My most important discovery about Tessa is that she’s not afraid of people. In fact, she likes them a lot and even gave kisses to two of my neighbors.

People like Tessa, too. Her silvery blue velvet coat garnered many compliments during my outing with her.

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I plan on seeing Tessa again this week.

In the meantime, I am hoping to do some things to improve her current situation, such as bringing her Kongs and bones.

You can help Tessa, too.

Please consider making a donation in her name to Midwest Adopt-a-Bull, whose tiny budget is being stretched to the limit by the cost of her boarding.

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If you would like to get something tangible in exchange for your giving, you can also buy a Beer Paws bottle opener from my Storenvy shop.

Beer Paws bottle opener

The front.

Beer Paws bottle opener

The back.

These button style bottle openers look great on your dog’s collar, at the end of a leash or on your own bag or keys. They’re even silver, like Tessa.

Until further notice, at least $1 from each Beer Paws sale will go directly toward Tessa’s care.

Order online today, and I will personally send you a Beer Paw!

Contact me with any questions.

Party Time with Mom

It’s her day.

mom wearing a spuds mackenzie apron

Who’s the real party animal in this picture?

This is the woman who taught me how to love unconditionally and that your baby, no matter how many legs it has or how ill-mannered it can be, should be doted on and cuddled as much as possible.

Case in point: Tori the rat terrier who’s giving the camera the stinkeye.

Today, I’ll be spending a good part of the day with my mom, celebrating our relationship and dining on tasty, locally prepared food.

Our ultimate hope is to get tickets for a  tour of Boulevard Brewery, the internationally renowned craft beer company based in Kansas City.

She better leave that Spuds Mackenzie apron at home, though.

Happy Mother’s Day to all of the moms out there! Whether your puppies have two legs or four, you deserve some appreciation for a job well done!

Hound Dog Joe

Joe doesn’t ask for much, but he needs a home.

adoptable hound dog in cameron, missouri

Sweet Joe needs someone to pal around with.

This good dog makes friends easily. Now, he needs a family.

 Joe has been in Missouri’s Puppies for Parole program about two months and is looking for his forever home. This young hound mix was found wandering the streets as a puppy.

Now approximately three months old, Joe has learned to sit and lay down. However, he’s still working on a his leash skills. He’d rather just wander around on his own, between naps. Joe is a sweet, loving dog who loves attention from anyone who offers.

He gets along with all the other dogs, and once he knows you are his handler he will follow you everywhere.

Anyone interested in giving this hound dog a good home can call the Cameron shelter at (816) 632-2177.

MIssouri Puppies for Parole

Every month Wayward Dogs features a story  from the Missouri Puppies for Parole program. You can check out all of the available puppies at P4P’s website!

A Tale of Two Cincos

The best part about having a very tiny dog is how easy it is to take him everywhere.

Scooby the elderpin and I met for the first time at a party, and he has continued to be a social fellow through our six+ years together, zipping underfoot at events I hosted and making the rounds from the crook of my arm during gatherings outside of our home.

Cinco de Mayo, 2009:

miniature pinscher in a sombrero cinco de mayo

Cinco de Mayo, 2009

The occasion: a vegetarian potluck, at my then-friend Zach’s house.

Zach had not yet encountered a certain golden retriever wandering the streets of Kansas City but welcomed my miniature pinscher into his dogless home for the party.

As soon as we arrived, a tiny sombrero was produced, furnished by a neighbor especially for Scooby.

In addition to the dog, I also brought a bowl full of guacamole made from overripe avocados. It wasn’t very good, but the guests pretended not to notice. Meanwhile, I pretended not to hang on my handsome host’s every word.

And Scooby didn’t have a single accident on the floor.

Cinco de Mayo, 2013:

miniature pinscher wearing a hoodie

Cinco de Mayo 2013

The occasion: Kansas City’s Cinco de Mayo Chihuahua Parade.

This year, I found myself in good company as a person with a novelty-sized canine.

Although this local attempt to break a world record for number of dogs in costume was open to all breeds, its advertisement as a Chihuahua-centric gathering attracted a preponderance of people with very small dogs of presumably Mexican heritage.

His sombrero long since gone, Scooby (who is often mistaken for a Chihuahua) sported his official KC Pittie Pack hoodie – and for most of the day, a blanket.

It was so unseasonably chilly, that Scooby’s new friend Piper, a teacup Chihuahua of just 2.5 pounds, never even fully emerged from Kennel Creek trainer Diana’s lunchbag pet carrier.

teacup chihuahua

Is that a pup or a peanut?

Despite the cold weather and a turnout not nearly high enough to break the current record of over 1,300 costumed dogs, Scooby and I had a lovely day with friends old and new. For me, it was especially nice to just have fun after our recent slew of sad life happenings.

Instead of thinking about all that, today we walked in the parade. We visited the Good Dog 2 Go food truck for dogs. We helped hand out Kennel Creek leashes.

And we sold the first of a new official Wayward Dogs product that happens to be perfect for people who love dogs and parties!

If you haven’t already seen the teaser photo of this product on the Wayward Dogs Facebook page, you can guess what it might be from this old blog post.

More details to come very soon!

Did you celebrate Cinco de Mayo with your dog?

Big thanks to everyone for your support over the past couple of weeks. It is good to receive kind and empathetic words when the days get dark.

Another Farewell

I feel like every time I promise a follow-up post or start a themed series on this blog, something happens and I end up leaving my readers hanging.

Thanks for putting up with me.

I promise to get back to sharing my late grandfather’s amazing collection of dogtiques very soon.

In the meantime, I need to share something else.

My beloved Uncle Bruce passed away this week.

brothers

That’s my dad on the left and his big brother Bruce on the right, circa 2011.

Bruce’s departure from this world was not unexpected. His big, old heart had been failing him for a while.

But it is never easy to say goodbye to someone forever. Bruce’s absence is felt profoundly by the family, his community and beyond. He was a legendary man, much like the son who beat him to heaven.

In the near future, I look forward to sharing a bit more about my dear uncle and his impact on my life.

For now, here’s a picture of his granddog Harv, who brought smiles and comfort in the final days.

Harv the silky terrier

A dog in the lap is great therapy.

I will always miss you, Uncle Bruce. 

The Saddest Picture in the World

When I was a little emo kid, I would stare at this picture every time I went to my grandparents’ house.

The Lost Playmate

“The Lost Playmate” by Gustave Henry Mosler

This framed 1902 print of Gustave Henry Mosler‘s painting “The Lost Playmate” originally belonged to my great aunt Vera, a kind and hunchbacked old woman I can barely remember.

Upon her passing, my grandfather acquired this piece of Victorian art and it became a central piece in his collection of old dog prints and figurines.

My grandfather has been gone about a dozen years now, but most of his collection still decorates the house he shared with my grandmother.

“The Lost Playmate” will always be my favorite, but come back tomorrow, and I’ll show you more of his beautiful collection of dogtiques.

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