Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Take Your Dog To Work Day 2014

Mark your calendar.  June 22, 2014 is Take Your Dog To Work Day.  I want all of you to be ready and looking sharp.  Make sure your nails are chewed short, your coat is licked clean and you are wearing your best smile.  You need to be ready just in case your human’s workplace is going to take part in this very important day.
DixieLee and I are lucky.  We get to go to work with our Mom every day but that’s because we work at home.  When I was a baby and we had a Studio in another town and I used to go to work with Mom.  It was a really good deal.  She would make gift baskets and I would get people to come into the store.  I was so cute, no one could resist.  Together we sold lots of gift basket.

Take Your Dog to Work Day was created by Pet Sitters International to celebrate and show people what great companions we dogs are and to get more people to adopt.  We sever as ambassadors, showing dog challenged co-workers what they are missing by not having a dog in their lives.
It was hard convincing some employers to let dogs go to work but research has shown that having dogs in the workplace leads to better teamwork, boosts morale, lowers stress and even contributes to higher employee retention.  In 1999 when the Pet Sitters International started the TYDTWD there were 300 companies that said okay and dogs went to work for the day.  In 2005 there were 10,000. 

Randolph T. Baker, a professor of management at VCU School of Business, said that “Dogs in the workplace can make a positive difference.”  He said that “The differences in perceived stress between days the dog was present and absent were significant. The employees as a whole had higher job satisfaction than industry norms.”  Yup dogs in the workplace are good.

Even if your Mom or Dad owns the company, there are some rules that have to be made.  Some people have allergies.  It‘s not their fault but dogs make them sneeze and be sick.  Some people are actually afraid of dogs.  Even when I was really little, Mom would go in the hall when she talked with her friend Nita cuz Nita was uncomfortable around me.  I still don’t understand why someone wouldn’t love dog kisses but it is a fact of life.
Dogs have to be on their super best behavior.  I could go with Mom to a “real” office job but I’m not sure DixieLee would like it. She doesn’t like to be around lots of people or to be in places where people are walking around and talking.  Mom would have to remember to bring my food, water, toys, and a bed or my crate so I would be comfortable.  She would also have to take breaks so I could go outside and, you know…

At our Studio, Mom had a baby gate between the Studio and the Shoppe.  Without the gate, I could go into the Shoppe and then right out the outside door.  A baby gate would be a good idea in big companies because it would keep the dog in one office and not let her walk around the whole place by herself and maybe get into mischief.
There are lots of places that let dogs go to work with their humans all the time.  Something like 17 percent of people have jobs at those kinds of places.  There are even career sites that let humans look for jobs in dog-friendly environments.

Do you get to go to work with your human every day or have you ever gotten the chance to take part in Take Your Dog To Work Day?  I'd love hear all about your experience.

Your hard working friend,


P.S.  Blatant self-promotion.  One of our Puppy Power Gift Baskets would make a great gift for any hard working dog.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

A Place of My Own

When you work from home like I do, it’s not always easy to separate your work life from your home life.  After a hard day in the office, I like a little peace and quiet but when you have a noisy and energetic sister it’s not always easy.
If I go in the bedroom, she goes in the bedroom.  If I sit on the couch, she sits on the couch.  If I go outside, she goes outside.  She can be so annoying. The only place I can have a minute to myself is in my crate.  I know lots of folks think that crates are just used for training or a place for a dog to be when no one is home but for me, my crate is my special place.

My crate is pretty.  It’s blue with nice wire windows on the sides to let me see out and let air in.  It has a wire metal door that I can look out too.  I keep the door open so I can go in and out any time I want. It’s a pretty big crate.   I can stand up or sit up straight or even stretch out a little when I nap.  My crate also has a fluffy blue blanket to sleep on.

DixieLee’s has her own crate and blanket too.  Her crate is all wire and has a plastic tray on the floor so the wire doesn’t hurt her feet.  Mom put a rug on top of it that also covers one of the sides so DixieLee can have some privacy.  It’s a big crate so she can sprawl out or sit up.  She also has a little crate that stays in our car.  When we go for rides, DixieLee rides in her little crate because she isn’t a good car rider like I am.   Mom puts her in the little crate and she naps otherwise car rides would not be fun because she wants to sit in the front seat and drive.

Since our house has both of the more popular kinds of crates, I’ve become pretty much an expert on crates.  So, if you are looking for a crate for your dog but don’t know what kind to get, let me help.
First of all, plastic crates are prettier than wire crates, mostly because they come in different colors.

Plastic crates are cozy and more private.  I can see out if I want but if someone wants to look in, they have to get close.  I can curl into a ball and not see any outside if I want to sleep.  I like my crate to feel like a den.
Plastic crates keep body heat in so they are nice and warm in the winter but wire crates are better in the summer because air has more places to get in.

Dogs in wire crates can look out all the sides while there aren’t many places to look out of a plastic crate.  Some dogs don’t like not being able to see out.  They feel trapped rather and secure.
Plastic crates are harder to break out of.  DixieLee had another kind of wire crate before and she was always getting out.  Mom finally got one with a double closer on the door and she hasn’t gotten out since.  I think she also likes her new crate more so she stays in it.  My cousin Sophie can also get out of her wire crate.

If you have a puppy or if your dog has a bad tummy, cleaning poop out of a plastic crate is more difficult than a the kind of wire crate that has a removable tray.
Both kinds are easy to store when you are not using them.   The top half of most of the plastic ones come off and fits into the bottom and the wire ones fold up flat.

If you really want a extra special crate for your dog, some crates look like furniture that you can keep in your living room.
No matter what kind of crate you choose, the most important thing you need to remember is to get the right size for your dog.  It should be big enough so your dog can sit up, stretch out and turn around but not over big.  After all, it is supposed to be your dog’s special place. Some of the wire ones come with dividers so you can buy a big one and make it small by using a divider while your puppy is little and make it bigger as the puppy gets bigger.

What kind of crate do you have and what’s the best thing about it?

Your friend,


P.S. Blatant self promotion.  Having a place of my own is one way my humans pamper me.  Our Spot's SPA Gift Basket is another way to show your dog how much you care.

Thursday, May 1, 2014

5 Resons People Need Dogs

I was relaxing on the couch this morning when I heard the bulldog on TV say that having a human is a big responsibility.  Wow!  I never thought of it that way but he sure is right. 

 Humans need a lot of care if they are going to lead healthy, happy lives and dogs can play a big part in making sure they are the healthiest and happiest they can be.

 In our family, if it weren’t for me letting Mom and Dad know what time it was, they would probably sleep way past five o’clock in the morning.

 1.  Dogs help their humans keep physically fit.  It’s true that people who have dogs in their lives are much more apt to exercise.  Taking them for walks is probably the biggest way we help keep them fit but I know one dog that helps her Dad run.  We also make sure that our humans get plenty of sunshine and fresh air by playing games with them outside.   Right now DixieLee is helping Dad stay fit filling in the holes she dug.

 My friend Sadie takes her Dad hunting pheasants and I’m going to take Dad fishing soon.  He says I’m the only Lab he knows who doesn’t like water.  I thought going in the water while he was fishing might not be such a good idea so I just like to sniff along the banks and check out the near-by fields.

 2.  Dogs can help improve a human’s social life.  We meet all kinds of people wherever we go. The dog park is the best place to meet new people.  If you happen to be as cute a dog as I am, people will come up to say how adorable or whatever and before you know it, we have a new friend.

 Some dogs even take their humans to therapy dog school.  After they complete the class, they can go to visit schools, libraries and places where older people live.

 3.  Dogs are good health care providers.  Just by petting a dog a human can lower their blood pressure.   Dogs can smell stuff 1,000 to 10,000 times better than a human so some dogs are able detect bad things like cancer or let a person know when their blood sugar is low.  Other dogs can know when a person with epilepsy is going to have a seizure.

 Dogs know how to cuddle just right to make a person not be depressed. 

 4.  Dogs keep people safe.  One very important responsibility we dogs have is keeping our humans safe.  For example, Mom would never have known there was a squirrel in the back yard just now if DixieLee hadn’t been lying on the bed looking out the window.  They would never know when any of our neighbors came home or when the mail came if we didn’t let them know. We can alert them as soon as someone turns onto our street because our hearing is so much better than theirs. 

 5.  Dogs provide companionship.  We make the very best friends.  We always want to do whatever you want to do.  We love unconditionally, are always happy to see you, never criticize your singing, or find your stories boring and we are excellent secret keepers.

Even though they can be trying at times DixieLee and I take good care of our humans because they are worth it.

What job do you do that you think is the most helpful to your humans?


P.S.  Blatant self promotion: Every dog deserves to be spoiled rotten so we created our Spoiled Rotten Dog gift basket just for them.