Wednesday, May 24, 2017

How Do I Love Thee....

My Mom and Dad love me and DixieLee very, very much. We know that by lots of the things they do for us. Things like giving us good food and lots of toys and treats. They talk to us, pet us, give us tushie rubs and even give us kisses but the one thing they don’t do is give us hugs.

Humans like to hug one another. Human hug when they like someone very much. I don’t like to be hugged because when a human hugs you, they make moving away hard to do. In dog language, putting arms (or paws) around someone, it is a sign of dominance. The one doing the hugging is dominate over the one getting the hugs.

I love my Mom and Dad very much. After all, they are members of my pack and pack members love each other. Pack members also keep each other safe.  DixieLee and I make sure Mom and Dad are always safe. We follow them from room to room. If they go into a room and close the door, we guard the door for them.

We make sure they are safe when they sleep. DixieLee sleeps on the bed until Mom and Dad are asleep and then we trade places. I guard from the bed and DixieLee guards from the sofa in the living room. Sleeping is the bestest way that I let Mom know I love her. I sleep on her feet or stretch out and cuddle my whole body on hers.

Touching is the bestest way to let humans know you love them. When we are out walking and stop to talk with other people, I like to lean against Dad’s leg. When Mom sits on the couch and she puts her feet on the table, she makes a nice bridge to walk under. If I stop when walking under her legs, she will rub my tushie or behind my ears.

One of DixieLee’s favorite places to play fight is under Mom’s legs when she is sitting at her computer. She thinks I can’t get her but I can.  Mom laughs because our playing makes her chair roll across the room.

Playing shows love too. We love to get our humans to play with us. I just have to drop a ball at their feet and they will pick it throw it for me. DixieLee likes to play tug of war. I don’t know how she does it but she always manages to end a game of tug of war with Dad with a belly rub.

We miss Mom and Dad when they leave the house and make sure we give them a big welcome when they come home. We know the sounds of their cars and wait at the door for them. We make sure they get lots of wiggles and whines and kisses every time.

Love is a big thing and we have lots of it at our house. What do you do to let your humans know you love them lots?

Your loving friend,


P.S. Blatant self-promotion. For the bestest pet gift baskets in the universe, go to You’ll be glad you did.

Thursday, May 18, 2017

It's A Dog's Life

You may not think so but being a dog can be stressful. Humans think dogs have easy lives. After all, many of us have nice families to share our houses with. We get healthy food and treats and get to go for walks and rides in cars.

You see our happy smiles and wagging tails and think everything is just fine but do you notice when we pant or lick excessively. I bet you notice when we chew up the furniture or pee in the house. Those are some big signs that we are stressed.

Dogs need lots of physical and mental exercise otherwise we get bored and boredom causes stress.  It can be really stressful for working dogs.  Working dogs can’t spend their days sleeping in their crates. I like to relax but even I can’t sleep all day.

Not having enough physical or mental activity is only one thing that stresses us out. Loud noises are very stressful too. Things like thunderstorms and fireworks are very loud but they don’t happen all the time like some of the noise we deal with every day.

Dogs have extra good senses and our hearing is lots more sensitive than human’s hearing. Humans like to play music and although we like music, we don’t like it extra loud. In our house the television is on all the time but Mom keeps the sound low. I like to watch the peoples and animals on the screen but I don’t like to hear some of the loud noises that the television makes.

We live on a street with not many cars but DixieLee and I can hear the big trucks that travel along the highway not so far away. I bet the dogs who live in the houses near the highway find the noise from those big trucks very stressful.

Yelling is the worst noise ever! Mom and Dad are old and they don’t hear good so sometimes when they talk when they are in different rooms they get really loud. When that happens, DixieLee barks to remind them that they should be using indoor voices when they are in the house.

And you should never ever use loud voices when training. Learning new things is stressful enough and yelling makes it even harder.

I’m pretty easy going so I don’t get stressed out often but DixieLee stresses a lot so Mom tries to make it so we don’t get stressed too much. One way is to make things routine. When we know when things are supposed to happen we know what we need to do.

Dad gets awake every day at the same time and we know he will get our breakfast soon. We know when Mom goes to work we have to go into our crates but we know Dad will come home soon and we can be in the whole house or in our pen if we want.

Mom and Dad also spend lots of time with us.  They take us for walks and talk to us all the time to help us have stress free lives.

I like being a dog and I do have a good life but it does get stressful some times.  I'm glad I get to live in a house with peoples who understand and try to keep my life stress free.  Most of the time....

I have to stop now and rest because Mom used her loud voice today when the man came in the big brown truck and we wouldn't stop barking.

Your totally stressed friend,


P.S. Blatant Self-promotion.  For the bestest pet gift baskets in the universe, check out

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Eau de Stinky Stuff

Boy was Dad mad!  We were all out for a nice long walk.  We sometimes walk in a very old cemetery because there are no cars and I can walk off leash.   As I said, we were having a very nice walk when all of a sudden Dad started running toward me yelling “No, no, no”.

Geeezzzzz.  You would have thought the world was coming to an end when all I was doing was rolling in some nice fresh poop that I found.  I know that Mom and Dad, like most humans, think poop is yucky but it isn’t to us dogs.  Humans forget that a dog’s nose can smell a zillion times better than a human’s nose.   A human only smells one thing at a time while we smell lots of different things.  And a single pile of poop or rotting something has lots and lots of different smell and we can tell what each one is.

Dogs have been rolling in poop and other stinky stuff since forever ago.  Some humans say it is because our smelling is so good we can tell that some of the yucky stuff was actually food at one time.   That would be very useful for our ancestors to know if there was some kind of food nearby.

The smelling food theory is one that humans thought up to explain why we like to smell yucky stuff but that doesn’t tell them why we roll in it.  Maybe it is because dogs don’t have cell phones so we can’t call our friends and tell them where we have been.  We can’t take photos to share on Facebook either.  Rolling in stinky stuff tells my friends and animals I meet along the way where I have been.  Rolling in the stinky stuff also puts my own scent down and lets anyone who comes along later know I was there too.

If I were hunting for food, rolling in poop or other yucky stuff would mask my real scent so my prey wouldn’t know that I was sneaking up on them.  They would just think it was the yucky stuff they had been smelling all along.  If I were the one being hunted, covering myself with another scent would help me hide better.

DixieLee and I don’t have to take baths like some dogs.  When we’ve been at the groomer to get out nails clipped, I’ve smelled dogs who have just had a bath.  To tell you the truth, I think they are too stinky and I much prefer rotting vegetables to bath stuff.

Humans are always trying to figure out “why” we do things.  Want to know a secret?  Sometimes we do stuff just because it’s fun.

Your stinky friend,

P.S.  Blatant self-promotion.  For the bestest pet gift baskets in the universe check out

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Back To School

Now that nice weather is coming, Mom and Dad want to be able to take us to lots of fun places like Dog Mountain and hiking in the White Mountains. We love going places with our Mom and Dad but it is important that we are on our best behavior when we do.

You see, only good dogs, with excellent manners, should go to places where there are lots of people and other dogs. Good dogs are dogs who listen to their humans about things like coming when called and dropping things we shouldn’t have picked up in the first place. One of the most super duper important things a good dog knows is how to leash walk well.

I admit I am not an excellent leash walker. Once we leave our yard, there are lots and lots of different things to see and smell that I tend to want to sniff every tree and rock and fire hydrant I see. I am trying to be a better leash walker, but it isn’t easy so Mom is taking us back to school.

Well, I’m going “back” to school because I did have school when I was really little but for DixieLee, going to school is a new experience. She said that when she lived with Mama Mel, she had some training but never went to “real” school.

We don’t go to the school yet, the teacher comes to our house. We like her a lot cuz she brings really good treats when she comes. She teaches us new commands and then we practice with Mom during the week.

I’m a good learner and DixieLee is getting better every week. Mom is thrilled that she knows “leave it” now cuz it's lots easier getting Dad’s socks back. This morning Mom noticed that DixieLee was hiding in her crate, chewing on a pencil.  Mom called "DixieLee Come" and she came out of her crate right away and then dropped the chewed up pencil as soon as she was told to “leave it”. DixieLee was so proud that she did good at listening that she gave Mom a big smile.

She still has to learned that just because something falls on the floor, it doesn’t mean it is hers but one thing at a time.

One of the hardest things we are learning is how not to bark when someone comes up our street. We think it is important to let Mom and Dad know such things like when the mail person comes but they say it isn’t necessary.

School stuff is fun but if we had to choose what we like best about school, I’d say it is recess.

Learning new things is so fun.  Maybe some day we’ll take Agility Training. Then again, agility training takes lots and lots of energy and I prefer conserving my energy for important things like eating.

Your scholarly friend,


P.S. Blatant self-promotion. Looking for the very bestest pet gift baskets in the universe? They are all at Stop by today and take a look.

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

More About Fences

 Last week in my blog I talked about the different kinds of fences there were and why it is safer for a dog to have a fenced in yard than for them to run free around the town. One of the kinds I mentioned was an invisible fence. Our friend Beauregard reminded us that invisible fences can be very bad for dogs.

Some people like them because they can be lots less expensive than other kinds of fences and since you can’t see them, they let you see all of the outside. Some places make rules about what kinds of fences houses can have. Because you can’t see an invisible fence they fit the kind of fences those rules say are okay.

An invisible fence sounds nice but it is really an electric fence that gives a dog a shock and makes a screechy noise when he tries to go outside of the fence. Shocks hurt and I don’t think hurting is a good way to train a dog. I think there are already enough bad noises like fireworks and thunderstorms so who wants more ugly sounds in the world.

Also the dog needs to be wearing a special collar for the fence to work. That means that other dogs, other animals or even bad peoples can come in the yard and hurt the dog that lives there.

If a dog sees something he really wants to chase or if something scares him enough, he could run real fast right through the invisible fence. He would get a shock but he would already be on the outside. The problem gets worse when he can’t get back into the yard. He will walk up to the yard and get a shock and stay on the outside.

One of Mom’s friends tried an invisible fence at her house. Her dog got shocked a couple of times and refused to go out of the house. He didn’t understand that he could go outside, just not too far. Luckily he only thought it was the front door so they let him out the back door and stopped using the fence.

 Our friend Julee reminded me that collars can get caught on fences and could choke a dog so we need to always be careful when we are outside, even when we are fenced in. Caught collars are only one of the reasons I  reminded peoples that they need to watch their dogs even though they are in a fenced in area. 

I see Dad is ready to go outside to rake the big yard so DixieLee and I will relax in our pen and watch him work. Having a big chain link fenced in yard means we can be outside with Dad and pretty much keep out of trouble. Well, I can. I don’t know about DixieLee.

Love your outside friend,

P.S. Blatant self-promotion. For the super bestest pet gift baskets in the universe, stop by You will be happy you did.

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Running Free, Not Me!

Did you know that a long time ago, when Mom was a girl, family dogs stayed outside all the time and ran free around town? I bet it would be fun to run around town and visit other dogs but it must have been very dangerous living back then.

Today most people let their dogs stay in the house and don’t let them run free when they are outside. I know that some adoption agencies won’t let a dog get adopted unless the house has a fenced yard. Fenced yards help keep pets safe. Fences keep dogs from running into the road where cars are and help to keep them from getting stolen. Today dogs that are running free around town can get picked up by the Police.

Pets that run free, especially cats and little dogs, are targets for undomesticated animals like foxes and coyotes. Porcupines and skunks many not eat you but they sure can make your life miserable. Even tangling with a squirrel or snake can mean a trip to the Vet. A neighborhood cat was almost taken by an eagle. Good thing her Mom heard her screaming and was able to rescue her. She is going to be okay but she did have to go to the emergency Vet to get stitches and shots.

Fences can be made from lots of things like wood or vinyl. There are even fences that are invisible!

DixieLee and I have a nice fenced in area. It is big enough for us to have good races and play fights in. It’s made out of chain link. DixieLee is a good jumper but the fence is high enough so she can’t jump over it and she’s not big on climbing over it like some dogs would be.

Dogs have been known to climb on top of dog houses or wood piles and jump over their fences from there. Some dogs prefer to go under their fences.

DixieLee almost dug her way out from under our fence. I don’t think she started out thinking of tunneling her way out, it’s just that she likes to dig holes and a couple of the holes happened to be near the fence. Some dog fences have a border of metal netting that helps keep a dog from digging their way out. Another way to keep a dog from digging under is to make sure that the fence goes at least 6 inches under the ground.

We get to go in our pen most any time we want but only when Mom or Dad is home. They don’t need to be outside with us but they want to be able to keep an eye on us. They know that DixieLee can get into trouble without even trying and escaping from the yard would be big trouble.

When we first got our new fence she tried to squeeze between the end of the fence and the house. Dad had to put an extra post in to fill the gap.  Like I said she doesn't look for trouble but it does seem to find her.

It’s a beautiful Spring day in Northern New Hampshire so I think I stop now and go outside in my pen and enjoy some sunshine and fresh air.



P.S. Blatant self-promotion. To see the bestest pet gift baskets in the universe, check out

Friday, April 14, 2017

The Real Scoop About Poop

Spring is finally here and we are getting to spend more time outside. It was so fun going for a big walk yesterday except Mom got very upset when we walked by a house that had a yard filled with dog poop.

When it snowed all the time, the poop got hidden in the snow but when the snow melted, the mess appeared. She said a poop filled yard not only looks gross, it is very bad for the dog that lives in the house.

Some people think that dog poop is like cow poop. They are wrong. Cow poop is good fertilizer, dog poop is not. That’s because dogs and cows eat different food. A dog’s diet is high in protein filled with stuff like beef and chicken. A cow’s diet is vegetarian. 

Dog poop makes the grass brown which is bad but what is more bad is that dog poop can have diseases like Parvo, Giardiasis, Salmonellosis and bugs like hookworms and tapeworms.

Parvo is very contagious and causes vomiting and diarrhea in dogs. Buggies like hoookworm are bad for dogs and people too. A yard full of dog poop is not a fun place for children to play and when grown ups step in a pile, it makes them say bad words.

We have a big pen and Mom cleans it twice a day, even when it snows. After the snow melted, our pen was nice and clean. When we go for walks, Mom has a pocket full of bags so if we have to poop, she can clean up after us. We think that cleaning up after dogs is so important, we put a box of biodegradable poop bags in of our dog gift baskets.

Unless we learn to use a shovel and rake like the doggie in the photo, we need to remind our humans that cleaning up poop is the right thing to do, even when no one is looking.

Your friend,


P.S. Blatant self-promotion. For the bestest pet gift baskets in the universe are at See for yourself!

Sunday, April 9, 2017

A Job Well Done

Hi everyone. I’m DixieLee, Zeva’s sister. I’m the chief product tester at Paw Pals Boutique so she said I could write the blog this week and tell you about some of the things we put into our pet gift baskets.

I have to admit I don’t know anything about cat things so I’m just going to talk about things dogs like. I’m part hound so I have a good nose for sniffing out the good stuff. Stuff like the all natural yogurt and carob frosted treats made in Vermont. Mom likes them because they are healthy, I like them because they taste awesome.

I also admit that I like all of the treats we use in our gift basket and most of the toys. Zeva likes the squeaky ball kinds of toys while I prefer the ones that are good for playing tug of war.

I like really like the dog bone toys from Smiling Dog Pets. They are hand made from recycled denim and have embroidered words on them. I also like the Zanie unstuffed toys. They are great for playing tug of war.

Sniffing out things to go into our gift baskets is only the beginning. Once we find something, I need to test it to make sure it meets my very strict requirements. I tend to be a little rough on toys so Mom makes the final determination.

Mom is also the one who puts all the toys and treats into the gift baskets. She gets that job because she is the only one that has opposable thumbs which are a big help especially when tying bows.

Zeva and I usually watch very carefully to make sure she puts in enough treats and toys and that she puts in a good variety of each. We also watch in case a package of treats accidentally opens and falls on the floor. It hasn’t happened yet but it’s good to pay attention because you never know.

Zeva said that writing a blog is lots of work and she is right, as usual. I still have to test a new batch of treats but I think I’ll take a short nap first.

Nice to meet you all,


P.S. Blatant self-promotion. Check out the bestest pet gift baskets in the universe at  

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Off To Work We Go

I like working at Paw Pals Boutique. Making gift baskets for pets is interesting work and a lot of fun. Mom was working in the office the other day doing accounting stuff. It sounded really boring until Mom explained that one of the reasons we work is to get monies so we can buy cookies.

I don’t know much about monies but I do know about cookies. At the time, I was reading an article about expensive dog accessories so Mom explained how much the different things cost if we paid in cookies.

For example, we saw a pretty collar that was made up of 52 carats worth of diamonds. Now I like carrots almost as much as cookies but Mom said carats are different from carrots. Then she wonders why I get confused when she says stuff.

Anyway, this pretty collar cost $3.2 million dollars. Mom said you can buy your very own cookie company for that much monies.

I have a pretty purple collar made by Waggsley Muttleston which didn’t cost nearly that much so if we every get $3.2 million dollars, I’ll buy my own cookie company and keep my purple collar.

We also saw a bathtub covered in shiny crystals that cost almost $7,000. I wouldn’t want one of those anyway since I don’t like baths.

I did like the dog house we saw that cost $417,000. It has two bedrooms, a big TV and an automatic food dispenser. We already have a pretty nice house with three bedrooms and a sort of big TV but we sure could use an automatic food dispenser.

There was a $10,000 harness. It was leather and lamb skin. It also had some of those diamond things on it and some 24K gold. It was sort of nice but I like my harness. It’s black and looks stunning against my white coat.

There were some accessories for cats too. There was a nice tree house that cost $999. I guess houses for cats cost a lot less than houses for dogs. I didn’t see where the tree house came with an automatic food dispenser so maybe that’s why it wasn’t as expensive.

We found a dinner bowl that cost $750. It was black and gold. I thought my dinner bowl which is white with different color bones on it was much prettier.

At Paw Pals Boutique we know that every pet needs a few essentials like a collar, harness and a dinner bowl and our To The Rescue gift basket is filled with some or those basics plus a whole lot more (like cookies). And it’s priced way less than $3.2 million.

Love your cookie counting friend,


P.S. Blatant self-promotion. Check out our To The Rescue Gift Basket and other designs at 

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

To Video Or Not To Video

Mom has started doing videos and posting them on our Facebook page and they seem to be popular.  DixieLee and I were featured in the first video but no others.  DL and I should probably do more but I am sooooo busy I'll have to see where I can fit another job into my already overbooked schedule. It looks like I may be able to shave a few minutes off of my afternoon nap but I'll have to do a time management analysis to see if that is the best use of my time.

In the mean time, I'll simply devote my blog this week to talking a little bit about

When I was adopted in 2011, I went to work with Mom every day to keep her company.  When people would come into our Shoppe I would greet them and soon people were coming in just to visit with me.

It was my idea to start selling pet gift baskets in our Shoppe and they did become very popular.  One of our biggest selling baskets was Paw Pals On the Heart.  We know that the loss of a pet is unbearable.  People send condolence gift baskets all the time so the idea of sending them for pets was a natural.

We also had lots of peoples who liked to send gift baskets when a pet got adopted.  I like those almost the best myself because I know a pet who gets a gift basket is going to be living in a super good home where there will be lots of people who love them.

By the time we closed the Laurel Mountain Basket Co shop in Massachusetts I was very active on line.  I had my own Twitter account, this blog and was an active member of 3 Million Dogs so it made perfect sense to give the pet division of Laurel Mountain Basket Co its own website.

Now you can find the bestest pet gift baskets in the universe all in one place.  Well, actually in three places but who is counting.  If you haven't already, "Like" us on Facebook and visit us often at

Look at the time!  I should be getting ready for my afternoon nap.

Anyway, please check out Mom's videos and let me know what you think.

Your friend,

P.S.  Blatant self-promotion.  For the bestest pet gift baskets in the universe go to

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Hi! What's Your Name?

You all know my name is Zeva but you may not know why my Mom chose that name for me.

When my Mom and Dad first met me, they thought I was very pretty and very smart.  Ziva David, was the prettiest and smartest character (played by Cote dePablo on NCIS) they could think of.  So, I got named after her.... only we spell my name differently.

My sister's name is DixieLee.  She got her name because she is a Dixie Dog. A Dixie Dog is a dog that is rescued from high kill shelters in the South and brought North

My friends Bumo and Miu were named after the area their breeds originated.  Both breeds started in the Himalayan mountain region of Tibet so their Mom gave them Tibetian names.  Bumo means girl and Miu means doll and their names fit them well.

Our friend Beauregard is a very special dog so his Mom named him after her very first dog who was also very special.  Beauregard is a French word and means well regarded and handsome.  I think my friend is very handsome.

Fo, our cat guest blogger, was named by her human girl who liked the fairy tale Jack In The Beanstalk so she named a litter of kittens Fe, Fi, Fo and Fum.

There are lots and lots of ways to choose a name for a pet.

Lots of pets have people names or people nicknames.  Some of the most popular dog names are Max, Buddy and Charlie for boys and Bella, Lucy and Molly for girls.

Some favorite cat names are Tigger, Lucy and Molly.  Lots of cats are given names that reflect their appearance or personality.  Names like Shadow, Smoky and Midnight or Comet and Dash.

There are some things that might help people choose a good name.  First, pets respond better to names that have one or two syllables.  Some dogs, especially championship dogs, have really long names.  Their papers may say their name is His Royal Highness Reginald III, his humans probably call him Reggie.

Also it should be a nice name.  How embarrassing it would be to be playing at dog park with a bunch of new friends and have your human yell out "Come here Dog Breath"!  I would run away for sure.

People should choose a name that will grow with their pet.  Even if the puppy is the smallest of the litter, Tiny is not such a good name for a Great Dane or Newfoundland.

Since we are friends I'd love to know your name and how your humans chose it for you.

Your friend,


P.S.  Blatant self-promotion.  Looking for a super special gift for your favorite fur friend?  Take a look at the super special gift baskets at

Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Sweet Dreams

Good Morning everyone!  There’s nothing like a good night’s sleep to get you ready for a productive day.

I was barking with a friend the other day and he said he wasn’t allowed to sleep with his humans at night.  I know that some humans believe that allowing a pet to sleep on the bed with them is not a good thing.

They say that you can get sicknesses or that we are dirty.  Well, DixieLee and I have had all of our shots and Mom has a special cover she puts on the bed that is easy to wash so we don’t have to worry about getting the bed dirty.  She said she would like to have a pretty spread but you can either have nice stuff or pets.  Whatever that means.

They also say that if people sleep with their pets they can get ticks and fleas.  That is true but only if we have ticks or fleas and we don’t.  At least not so far.  We wear tick and flea stuff and we get buggy checked all the time.

People also say people shouldn’t sleep with pets because they can disrupt sleep.  That is probably true.  DixieLee kicks in her sleep and when she kicks me I wake up and jump off the bed.  I guess she wakes Mom up too because she usually tells me to stop pacing and go back to sleep.

If a people has big pets like me and DixieLee they might not be able to stretch out good.  DixieLee likes to sleep with her head on Mom’s shoulder and I like to sleep with my head on her feet.  Mom says she hates to turn over because she doesn’t want to wake us.

DixieLee is also a blanket hog.  She plops down and the blanket gets pulled away from Mom making her cold.

I think unless someone is allergic, sleeping with a pet is a good thing.  Pets like to cuddle.  Mom says she finds it peaceful when she hears DixieLee snoring away.  She says that the snoring is hypnotizing and helps her fall asleep.

Mom also says knowing that we are all safe and sound  makes her feel relaxed and since we have better hearing than her makes her feel safe.  Except when there is a false alarm and I wake her for no reason.  Not that t happens often, just sayin’.

Snuggling with a pet keeps people warm.  It’s really nice in the wintertime when it is cold and windy outside.

And the bestest reason for letting pets sleep with our humans is that we like it.  Mom and Dad are busy most of the day so we don’t get to spend much time with them.  It’s nice to cuddle up and just be with them.  I’m sure you feel the same way about your humans.

Sorry but all this writing has warn me out.  Time for a nap… on the big bed, of course.


Your sleepy friend,


P.S.  Blatant self-promotion.  If you haven’t checked out our website yet, you are missing out. has the bestest pet gift baskets in the whole universe.

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

No Bow Thank You

I watched some of the Westminster dog show a couple of weeks ago.  I liked watching the dogs run around the arena with their humans.  That looked like fun but why would any dog put up with the other stuff?  I mean hair dryers and nail buffing and smelly baths.  Not for me!

I know grooming is important and not just cuz it makes us look pretty.  Things like brushings are good for all dogs, not only the ones with super long coats.  Brushing helps keep us clean buy getting rid of dirt and dandruff and hair we shed.  Brushing also helps make oils spread over our fur making it look silky.

I don’t mind a little brushing but I’m sure glad I’m not an Afghan or Poodle.  They have to get brushed lots so they don’t get their fur matted.

Brushing also lets Mom check us for little hurts.  DixieLee and I play hard and sometimes we get little hurts so when Mom brushes us she can check us for scrapes, cuts, lumps, bumps and even fleas and ticks.

Brushing is a nice way for dogs and their humans to spend time together. I know lots of dogs like to get groomed but me, not so much and DixieLee hates it.   She thinks she is a tough dog.  She loves to roll in the dirt and grass and get muddy.  She thinks grooming is for sissies.  The groomers at the day care really earn their pay when she shows up.  Especially when she needs her nails clipped.

Before she came to live with us she spent most of her time outside running free.  She ran on rocks and roads and sidewalks so her nails stayed pretty short.  Now that she has a house to live in with carpets, nice grass in the yard and woodland trails to walk on her nails get pretty long.

Long nails are not good.  If they are too long they can make walking and running difficult.  They can split or break which hurts.  If a dog’s nails are too long they start to walk funny and that can cause their joints to hurt or even get arthritis.  Long nails can accidentally scratch too.  I know DixiLee scratched Dad’s hand one time and he needed a Band-Aid.

Lots of dogs get their teeth and ears checked when they get groomed.  You need good strong teeth for eating cookies so keeping them clean is important.  Ears need to be clean and working well too or else you can’t hear the potato chip bag open.

Even though I don’t like getting brushed and washed and clipped I admit I do look extra pretty when we are all done.  I always get a nice colorful kerchief to wear after a grooming but no hair dryers please and no one puts one of those little bows in my hair.

Your well groomed friend,


P.S.  When you need a gift for your favorite fur friend, check out the huge selection of pet gift baskets at pawpalsboutique,com  I bet you fill find something your friend will  absolutely love.

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Back to School

I almost never get in trouble but I think I may have stepped on Mom's last nerve.

It's not really my fault. You see, she says I need to ALWAYS come to her when she calls my name. Well, there are times when I am really busy and sort of ignore her. Since she is the MOM, she says that is unacceptable. She said DixieLee and I need a training refresher course. I wasn't sure exactly what that means so I went on line to find out about dog training.

From what I read there are lots of ways to train a dog and it seems like nobody is sure which is the bestest way. From all the choices I read about, I like the one called “reward based training” or “conditioning”. Although some dogs respond well to praise or play, DixieLee and I love food or as the professionals say, we are food motivated so I hope Mom decides to use food in our training.

Some people think that using food in training is bribery and when the food stops coming, we will stop listening. There is a trick people use so that doesn't happen. Mom always tells us when we do good and pets us when she gives us our reward. After a while, getting told we are good and getting petted is almost as good as getting a treat.

Others think that we will be afraid that if we don't behave we won't get fed. Only a really horrible person would do that! We trust Mom and know that we will always get fed every day.

DixieLee and I love all kinds of food but some dogs are picky. They would do better with people food like peanut butter or cheese. Not that we wouldn't love getting some cheese or peanut butter! The thing about using people food for training is that dogs should only have tiny bits of it and there are lots of people foods that dogs should not eat so they have to choose the right foods.

We would love to have people food but the treats Mom uses are made special for training. They are small and even healthy but they are really yummy so we overlook the small and healthy part.

Some people don't like to use food in training because they think their dog will get fat. Well, that is a concern and that is why you only get a tiny bit for the reward. Some people use regular kibble for training. They measure out the daily amount and take part of that amount for training. That way the dog is getting his or her regular amount of food only spread out over the day.

Now that I know what a refresher training course is all about, I'm ready to start. I saw that Mom put a box of the special small and healthy treats in the cabinet so I know she is ready too. The next time she calls my name I'll respond the first time. I'd hate to miss out on any of the rewards.

See you after class,


P.S. Blatant self-promotion. When you are looking for a unique gift for your special fur buddy just go to We have the bestest pet gift baskets in the whole universe.

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Everyone Should Know a Second Language

DixieLee and I were playing outside when she noticed the cat sitting in the window of the house across the street. There are two cats that live in that house with two dogs. We started to wonder if they all talked to each other.
I don't know much about cats so I asked our cat friend Fo how cats talk to each other and other animals and humans. (Fo lives in India so she speaks Hindi.  See her saying "Hello" in the picture)
Fo said that cats communicate lots of different ways. They use their voices, they use their bodies, and they use scents. Interesting, so do dogs.
Cats use their voices to let you know what they want. They purr when they are happy and they howl when they are scared or angry. A cat meowing while standing near their bowl probably means you are late with their dinner.
Cats use their eyes, ears and tails to let you know what they are thinking. If you see a cat puffing up her tail, baring her teeth, arching her back and bringing out her claws, it most likely means she is not happy and it's best to back away cuz she ready to fight.
Cats have a good sense of smell so their bestest way to communicate is by scent. They mark their territory with scent to let other cats know to stay way. When kittens are born, the can't see at all so the only way they know where their mama is is by smell. Cats have glands in their faces that release their scent. Lots of time you will see kittens kissing noses or rubbing heads with their mama. Grown cats will touch noses or rub their heads with cats they are friendly with.
Paws are another place where cats release scent. When you see a cat kneading, they are marking their territory.
Male cats spray to mark their territory which makes their humans very unhappy if they do it inside the house.
Fo couldn't tell us much about eye blinking or staring because she is blind but she said that her friend Alpha told her that she blinks or closes her eyes to Fo all the time because blinking and closing her eyes is a sign of trust.
The opposite of blinking is starting. Cats don't like eye contact so if a cat is staring it means they feel threatened so it is better to not go near them.
Cats use their tails to communicate too. A confident cat will walk with their tail held high. If you see a cat with their tail tucked between their legs, it means they are insecure or frightened.
It sounds like cats and dogs have a lot in common as far as how we communicate. Now if I see a cat showing her teeth and claws, I know to keep walking by and not stop to say hello.
It's good for people to understand how their pets communicate so they can make life less stressful for everyone. Like when you see your dog or cat sitting near the treat jar, it probably means they want a cookie and you should give them one so they don't get stressed.
Thanks for stopping by to say hi!
Your friend,

P.S. Blatant self-promotion. For the bestest pet gift baskets in the universe, check out or our Facebook page at PawPals Boutique Store.

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Not Just For Fun

If you think that playing is only for fun you would be wrong.  Play is a very serious thing.  Play is exercise and exercise is really important for dogs because it helps us get rid of energy.  If we don’t get rid of energy by playing we find some other way to get rid of it.   I’m not pointing paws or anything, but some dogs, like a certain sister I have, get rid of extra energy by misbehaving. 

By encouraging play, your human could save a nice pair of shoes or an end table or even Mom’s reading glasses.  (Not pointing paws.  Just saying it wasn’t me.)

Anyway, play can be lots of things.  Play can be gentle or extreme.  Taking a walk can be a kind of play.  Nice walks are good for older dogs or dogs that don’t have lots of energy like Basset Hounds or Bulldogs.  Breeds like Border Collies or Australian Shepherds are very high energy and need lots more exercise.  Lots of high energy dogs love agility training because they get to use up all that energy.

Beagles can do well in the agility part.  It’s the training part that gets in the way.  DixieLee is a beagle mix which might explain a lot.

I like to play catch and our toy box is filled with lots of different balls.  Balls are good for playing other games too.

When it’s too cold or rainy outside Mom likes to play Up and Down the Stairs.  Mom makes the ball go down the stairs and I have to go down the stairs, get the ball and bring it back up to her.

Up and Down the Stairs uses different muscles and gets rid of energy fast.

Fetch is another good game and you can use lots of different toys.  A ball makes a good fetch toy but so does a Frisbee or even a soft toy.  DixieLee’s favorite toy is a funny snowman.  She loves when Mom throws it and she can fetch it back. 

Chase games are fun.  DixieLee and I play chase all the time.  Mom and Dad aren’t very good at this game so they just watch and cheer.  Bubbles are pretty to chase but are not good for playing fetch.  No matter how quick you are they disappear as soon as you think you’ve got them.

The soft snowman is also good for another good game.  Tug of War.  This is lots of fun.  We play Tug of War with Mom and Dad and with each other.  Braided rope toys are good Tug of War toys.

We have lots of toys to play with and after a day of playing our toy box is empty and our toys are all over the house.  Some dogs, like our cousin Sophie, put all their toys back in the box when they are done playing.   Putting away toys takes energy and by the time I’m done playing I’m out of energy and ready for a nap.

I bet you have a favorite game and toy.  Let me know so that we can make sure that we have the most popular toys in all of our gift basket.

Your playful friend,


P.S.  Blatant self-promotion.  Check out our huge selection of pet gift baskets at or on our Facebook page.

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Welcome Home

I love Mom and Dad and miss them when they are not at home.  I can hear when they start driving up our street and even though it is a short drive, it seems like forever before they come into the house.  I am so happy when they come home because then our pack is all together and I can watch over everyone.

I make sure I greet Mom and Dad at the door so they know I am happy to see them and to see if they have been around any other dogs.  My sister, however, goes overboard.  She loves Dad and greets him nice but when Mom comes home she goes crazy.  She runs to the toy chest or the couch and grabs a toy.  Then she runs to Mom.  She is so excited and her tail wags so hard she could give me a concussion if she hit me in the head.

She must think that Mom will like her more if she gives gifts but I don’t think so.  I’ve heard that some humans think it’s “cute”.  I’ve heard them say their dogs are bringing them gifts because they love them or they are showing respect because humans are the pack Alpha.

I’m not so sure about that.

 I’ve never seen Mom chew on a dirty sock or old caribou horn and Mom knows she is in charge and I know it too but I don’t need to bring her stuff to prove it.   It could be that DixieLee is part hound and in the way old times wild dogs would bring food to the den for the pack the share.  It would be just like her to show off her hunting skills.

It doesn’t help that Mom tells her she is a good dog and thanks her for the toy.  Of course DixieLee doesn’t give her the toy.  It’s not like she wants to play.  We know that Mom has things to put away when she gets home and can’t play so we just follow her around until she is done.

Besides, when we want to play we just throw toys at Mom.  She’s pretty smart and she knows we want to play catch or tug of war and unless she is typing something really, really important she will stop and play with us.

I’ve asked DixieLee why she greets Mom like that but she says she just feels like it. 

What about you?

A.  Do you bring something to your human when they come home?

B.  Why do you do it?

C.  What does your human do when you do?

Curiously yours,


P.S.  Blatant self promotion.  Check out the bestest pet gift baskets in the universe at 

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Winter Wonderland

I am sooooo excited!  The weather person says we are going to get a big snow tonight.  I hope this time he is right.  DixieLee and I love to run and play in the snow.  I have a nice thick coat to keep me warm and DixieLee runs so fast, the cold can’t catch her.
Even with thick coats we still need to be careful that we don’t stay out too long because if we get too cold we could get frostbite or even hypothermia.  Frostbite and hypothermia are bad, bad, bad for all animals and people too.  Puppies, older dogs or dogs who are not so well have to be extra careful not to be outside too long.
Dogs with short coats or who get cold easily can wear sweaters or coats when they go out.  Boots are also a good idea.  Boots not only keep feet warm and dry, they keep them safe from salts and chemicals.  The photo you see is of our friend Beauregard.  He lives in Canada where it is cold and snows a lot like it does in New England where we live.  He doesn’t like to wear his boots but his Mom knows keeping warm and dry is very important.  We think he looks very handsome in his boots and coat.
We have a nice pen to play in and our Dad uses pet safe salt to keep it not slippery but roads and city streets are treated with salts and chemicals that can be bad for dogs.
Dogs who walk on roads and streets should have their humans wash their paws, legs and bellies when they get back inside.  Licking the salt and chemicals can make you sick and if you don’t clean the salt and chemicals off they can get into your pad and make them hurt.
Chunks of snow can also get caught between your toes causing them to hurt which is one more reason to checked and cleaned when you get back inside.
Another chemical to be careful around is antifreeze.  Antifreeze is something that helps cars run better in the cold.  Antifreeze is sweet but is very poisonous so if you see any near your car, have your humans clean it up and DON’T drink any.
We need to be careful around ice in winter too.  It is best to not go near frozen lakes, ponds and rivers because the ice may look strong but it may not be.  If you fall through the ice you won’t be able to swim out like you can in the summer.
I know after a big day of playing in the snow I get hungry.  Some people think that extra weight helps keep a pet warm but my Mom says that extra weight brings more serious health problems so she makes sure our weight stays at the good level.
Animals that live outside do need more food during the cold weather but not those of us who live in nice warm houses.
Enjoy Winter but be safe.
P.S. Blatant self-promotion.  For the bestest pet gift baskets in the universe, check out

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Tips On Vacationing With Your Pet

A few months ago I wrote about the difference between staying at a kennel and using a pet sitter while our humans were attending a wedding far away.  DixieLee and I weren't invited so we couldn't go but when Mom and Dad go on vacation, we can go with them.

DixieLee and I both like to ride in the car. She likes to sleep in her crate the whole time while I like to sit up and look out the window.  When traveling by car, a crate or seat belt harness is recommended.  Just like a human, we need to be protected in case there is an accident.

Dogs should never ride with their heads outside the window because they can get stuff flying in their eyes.  I keep the window down just enough to I can stick my nose out and smell all the good smells but not so far down where my eyes can get my eyes hurt.

And never ever ride in the back of a truck.  You could get very hurt or even died.

Just like humans, we need to pack our belongings.  We need our regular food and it's good to bring along water from our house or bottled water because we get thirsty on long car rides.  Mom likes to take lots of water because she says that in some places the water tastes yucky.  Don't forget any medications you are taking and of course treats and toys.

Since you will be drinking water, make time for potty breaks where you can walk around a little and stretch your legs.  Lots of rest areas have poop bags available but you should bring along your own just in case.  Also make sure your humans always clean up.  It's the nice thing to do.

Of course we need to be on leash whenever we leave the care, even for a minute.  It is easy to get distracted or confused and run into traffic.

Don't ever stay in the car without your humans, especially in hot weather.  It gets really, really hot very fast.  It can get so hot that you could get sick and even died.

No pet should ever leave home without proper identification and this is even more important if you are going to be far from home.  We have microchips so if our collars or tags get lost, we can still be identified.

It's a good idea for your humans to have your microchip number and the phone number of where to report you missing if they somehow get separated from you.  Having a recent photo of you is also a good idea.

If you are going on a very big trip a visit to the vet before you leave is recommended.  The vet can make sure you are in good shape and they can give you a copy of your inoculations report to take with you.

Mom is going to take us to the beach this summer.  We have never been to the beach so it will be a big adventure.  The beach is far away so we will need to stay at a hotel.  There are lots of hotels that let pets stay in the rooms with their humans but we need to be on our best behavior.

The first thing you need to do when you get to the hotel is take a big walk.  After riding in the car it's good to stretch your legs and get rid of some extra energy.  Since you will be going to a strange place, there will be lots of strange scents everywhere.   Your humans should walk around the whole hotel room so their scent is the freshest.  I may help you feel more comfortable.

Some places have size restrictions so Mom had to make sure we found a place where they let big dogs stay.  Like not staying in the car without your humans, you shouldn't stay in the hotel room alone either.  Hotels where dogs can stay are often near lots of places where dogs can go like the beach.  The beach we are going to has rules so we have to be on our best behavior there too.

Sine Mom and Dad don't like to fly we don't have to worry about traveling on an airplane.  If you are going on a vacation that needs an airplane to get to, there are lots more things you need to know about.  And, if you are going to travel to another country, oh boy, you really need to know about lots of stuff.

I hope you get to go on vacation with your humans.  If you already have been on one, I'd love to hear about it.

Your traveling friend,


P.S.  Blatant self-promotions.  Did you know you can now shop at right from our Facebook page?  Come and check it out.

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Dog Heads Up New Division

We were cleaning up the Studio and getting things back in order after the Christmas rush when we found a bunch of brochures we had made up when we started the pet gift basket business.
The cover read:

Dog Heads Up New Division
January 2012
Press Release

Marie Lisewski,
owner and chief designer of
is pleased to announce the promotion of
Zeva The Dog to Canine Vice President
of the company’s Pet Division.

Zeva will be responsible for choosing and
testing all of the toys and treats that will be
used in the company’s expanded line of pet
gifts and gift baskets.

“Zeva joined the company in August of 2010
as a puppy and due to her Border Collie
intelligence and organizational skills quickly
rose to several management positions

“We plan to expand our on line presence in
the pet gift field in the next twelve months and
Zeva will be an important asset to help our
organization reach its goals”
said Ms. Lisewski.

“I am thrilled to be taking on this new role.  As
a dog, I am very aware of the  need for more
toys and treats in every pet’s life and my goal
is to see that we provide pet gifts to fit every
taste and every budget.” Said Zeva.


Zeva can be reached at

I can’t believe it’s been five years!  In those years we have experienced tremendous growth.  I got promoted some more and am now Chief Canine Officer with lots of new responsibilities.

We now have our very own website and we have our own Facebook and Twitter (@Zevathedog) pages!

We are posting weekly to this blog and sending out a newsletter to our fans every other week. (If you want to receive our newsletter it’s easy.  Just go to our Facebook page and click on the newsletter link.)

In 2013 DixieLee came to live with us and soon became a very important part of our team.  Of course I had to train her in all aspects of the business but she is a fast learner and it didn’t take long before she was the best product tester I ever saw.  She loves checking out boxes so she has become very helpful in both shipping and receiving.

If you haven’t visited our website yet, I invite you to check it out and to friend us on Facebook and Twitter.  We love talking with dogs (and cats) from all around the world and would love to hear what you have to say.

Mom says it’s time to get back to work.  The Studio won’t clean itself.

Wishing you and your humans a healthy, happy and funfilled 2017.



P.S.  The photo is of me and Mom when we started the pet division.