Friday, October 24, 2014

8 Great Places to Walk Your Dog in Atlanta

Rocco takes in the view of the Midtown Atlanta skyline  from Piedmont Park
It's hard to believe, BarkWorld Expo 2014 is just around the corner!

If you're heading to Atlanta next week to attend BarkWorld and you have a little extra time, I've compiled a list of some our favorite in-town walks, perfect for you and your dogs if you are bringing them! These all are within about eight miles from Buckhead and the Westin Hotel. 
Piedmont Center nature trail


The 1.2-mile Piedmont Center nature trail is closest to the BarkWorld host hotel. It's a hidden gem that meanders behind an office complex about a mile walk from the Westin. Click here for walking directions.

Chastain Park also has a nice path around the park and is about 2.8 miles from the hotel.  Click here for driving directions.

Lenox Park has some walking paths around a pond and fountain and is about 1.5 miles away. Click here for driving directions.

Lullwater Park is one of Atlanta's hidden gems. Located next to Emory's campus, it's a lovely place for a dog walk with wooded trails, open fields, a lake and streams and all located just minutes from the city of Atlanta. Here's a post we wrote about our Walk Through Lullwater Park


Rocco at Piedmont Park

Piedmont Park is the city of Atlanta's largest park, located near the Midtown and Virginia Highland neighborhoods, about a 20-minute drive from Buckhead. You can spend a few hours here, walking on both paved and wooded paths. And, if it's a dog park you're looking for, Piedmont Park has separate areas for small and large dogs. You can get a feel for the park in these posts:
A Walk Through Piedmont Park Expansion
A Walk Through Piedmont Park

The Beltline trail at 10th and Monroe



Near Piedmont Park, and actually running through it, is the start of the Atlanta Beltline Eastside Trail. This is a really cool path that was developed where an old railroad track and previously unused space existed. It really is "found" greenspace, created from an area that was unusable for years -- covered in kudzu and other debris. Interesting art installations also seem to pop up along this path all the time. Beltine Piper used to live on the Beltline, but he's since moved to an unlisted address. 


Here are links to a few more nearby walks:

Dog Walk on Freedom Parkway Trail
A Stroll Through Winn Park


For some more helpful blog conference and travel tips with pets, check out these:
Travel Bag Comfort for You and Your Pet
A Walk Through BarkWorld Expo 2012
BarkWorld Packing Tips

See you at BarkWorld! If you're coming, please let me know in the comments below!

The fun and games continue every Friday with FitDog Friday, the weekly Blog Hop brought to you by To Dog With LoveSlimDoggy and My GBGV Life to promote a healthy active lifestyle for pets (and their people, too!). Join in every Friday by linking up your FitDog story or visiting the blogs in the Hop.





Thursday, October 23, 2014

Fido's Freebie Friday is ready to #TreatRight!

Rocco is READY to #TreatRight!
Welcome to another edition of Fido's Freebie Friday (FFF), the weekly giveaway blog hop for all things pet!

It must be Twitter Party season, because this week we're preparing for another Event Barkers event, loaded with terrific prizes and sure to be tons of fun! 

Rocco's been busy taste testing all his yummy new Merrick treats from their lines of all-natural Kitchen Bites, Jerky Chip Treats, Power Bites and Dental Chews. Your pups can get their chance to win some too just by going to our RSVP post and entering via the giveaway widget.

More treats, please!
We hope you'll join us on Twitter at #TreatRight this Sunday, Oct. 26 from 8-9 p.m. ET. We'll be giving away $750+ in Merrick USA-made treats along with our co-hosts DogTipper and All Things Dog Blog.  And, we'll be sharing all sorts of fun tips and occasions to help you #TreatRight!

If you can't make the party, you can still enter to win one of our three pre-party prizes.  But hurry… you'll have to do that before the party starts this Sunday.

In the meantime, check out the selection of this week's giveaways in the Fido's Freebie Friday Blog Hop below. You can enter them all or add your own! We make it easy by linking them up all in one place.


Here's how to participate 


The rules for Fido's Freebie Friday are super simple. Here's all you need to know to link up:
  • You have up to 45 characters to describe your prize and include an expiration date
  • Fido's Freebie Friday Blog Hop is open to posts with prizes for pet products or services, including pet-related or pet-themed items for owners. Use your specific post url to link up.
  • Or simply enter the giveaways that interest you for a chance to win some fabulous prizes!
Fido's Freebie Friday opens each Thursday afternoon for linkups at 4 p.m. ET, and renews each week at the same time with a new listing. Link up anytime during the week!

For more information, you can check out the help page. Your hosts are All Things Dog BlogDogTipper and To Dog With Love.

Happy (s)hopping!


Individual rules of entry and guidelines for winning may apply to each listing. All Things Dog Blog, Doggies and Stuff, DogTipper and To Dog With Love take no responsibility for the legality of the rules governing the listings on other sites and giveaways that are posted here. We simply provide this forum as a gathering place for pet products to be offered. Fulfillment of each giveaway is done by the blog conducting the giveaway, not by the hosts of this giveaway hop; please contact the giveaway host with any questions regarding a giveaway or giveaway prize.

Take a Walk, Help a Rescue with ResQwalk Mobile App

I was recently introduced to the ResQwalk, a mobile app that allows animals lovers to raise money for rescue groups just by walking… and now I'm addicted to it!

I will say, if you're going to have an addiction, this is a good one to have! ResQwalk not only motivates me to get out more often to walk Rocco, it also allows us to raise money for our favorite rescue groups every time we go for a walk. 

And that is good for our hearts in more ways than one!

The app launched this past June for IOS and now it's also available for Android devices.

Here's how it works

Each week ResQwalk announces a donation pool. In order for a rescue to receive a portion of that week’s pool, their supporters simply need to start the ResQwalk app when they go for a walk or run. At the end of each week, donations are distributed to the rescues proportionally to the total distance walked by their supporters.

“Our vision is to give people a platform that enables them to easily integrate ‘giving’ into their daily routine. Often people don’t have the time to foster a cat, the space to adopt a dog, or the time to volunteer. ResQwalk gives everyone the opportunity to help animals in need on a daily basis without disrupting their regular schedules,” said Founder Bailey Schroeder.

Since launching on June 26th, iOS users have walked over 190,000 miles and $33,400 have been donated to animal rescues across the United States and Canada. There are over 1,000 benefiting organizations on the ResQwalk app.

Both the iOS and Android ResQwalk apps now include a leaderboard that enables users to track how many miles have been walked in support of their favorite rescue throughout the week. 


ResQwalk’s donation pools are funded by a combination of corporate sponsorship dollars and sales generated in the shop section of the app. BarkBuddy (a Bark & Co company) is the current corporate sponsor and deals from Coupaw.com, in combination with ResQthreads products, are powering the shop section of the app.

ResQwalk is available on the App Store and from Google Play.

For more information:
Visit ResQwalk.com
Like ResQwalk on  us on Facebook
Follow ResQwalk on Twitter
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This post is sponsored by ResQwalk. As alway, all opinions expressed herein are our own, and To Dog With Love only shares information we feel will be of value to our readers.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Merrick Dog Treats Review: An Occasion to #TreatRight

In our household, there are LOTS of occasions to give a dog a treat!
  • A reward for good behavior
  • Coming inside when called
  • Playing hide and seek with treats
  • Learning a new trick
  • Relaxing after a vigorous hike, or during a hike or walk
  • Getting brushed out
  • A bedtime snack
I could go on and on!

So we were really excited to learn about Merrick's new line of grain-free and gluten-free treats that includes FOUR different types of treats in a total of TWENTY different varieties and flavors.  That's a lot of variety to keep a pup interested and motivated!

I love switching up Rocco's treats to KEEP him interested and I also think it's a good idea to look for these qualities in treats:
  • Made in the USA, with no ingredients from China.
  • High quality ingredients with real meat, fruit and veggies.
  • Grain- and gluten-free with no corn, wheat or soy (none of the fillers your dog doesn't need).
  • Nothing artificial or scary looking in the ingredient list. So we look for treats with no artificial colors or preservatives.
What we love about Merrick's new treats is they're all these things and more.  So I couldn't wait to see what Rocco thought of them.

Rocco patiently awaits to perform his treat test duties

The new lineup includes biscuits (Kitchen Bites), soft & chewy training treats (Power Bites), Dental Chews and dog cookies (Jerky Chip Treats) – all grain-free and gluten-free.  So how to decide what to treat when? Here's how we do it.

First let's talk dog cookies and biscuits. I like these for Rocco as a special treat, a bedtime snack and a reward for coming inside after he goes potty outside. You do want to treat responsibly by choosing healthy treats and accommodating for the calories in your dog's daily diet. I typically break a cookie into about four (or more) smaller pieces since Rocco's a smallish pup.


Rocco not so patiently dives into the Kitchen Bites!… and devours the cookie!
He moves on quickly to the Jerky Chip Treat with equal gusto! 
Rocco LOVES both the Kitchen Bites and Jerky Chip Treats and I love that they both are filled with quality proteins and other healthy ingredients. Here's a bit more on both.

Merrick Kitchen Bites: These are oven-baked biscuits made with deboned meat as the first ingredient, and inspired by Merrick’s award-winning classic cans in six flavors – Wingaling (Applewood Bacon and Hickory Smoke), Turducken, Brauts N Tots, Cowboy Cookout and Grammy’s Pot Pie.

Merrick Jerky Chip Treats: These are the newest addition to Merrick's line of grain-free and gluten-free treats. These oven-baked all-natural dog cookie treats are filled with protein-packed jerky chips, in four flavors including chicken, beef, lamb and salmon.

Next we tried the Merrick Power Bites. These are soft and chewy treats with deboned meat as the #1 ingredient. They're small enough to use for training where we typically use LOTS of treats. AND, they're soft enough to break even smaller so we can treat even more.


We used this training opportunity to proof Rocco's down/stay. The Power Bites provided a HUGE distraction!

I'll use Power Bites for our agility and tricks training, and when we're out walking to keep Rocco focused on me when distractions come by. 


It didn't take much encouragement to get Rocco to inhale these treats too!
Power Bites come in Beef, Turducken (turkey with duck), Pork, Salmon, and Chicken. And, these are one of the only soft and chewy treats made without artificial preservatives. 

Finally, Rocco loves a good chew and I like giving him dental chews to help with his dental health. 

Rocco's a bit "over" having to stay and wait! He LOVES these too!
Merrick Dental Chews clean dogs’ teeth and freshen breath with all-natural ingredients. These chews come in five different shapes & textures and, unlike some other dental treats, do not contain grain (like wheat) or gluten. Available in three sizes of brush bones (Mini, Lil and Big) as well as Flossies and Texas Toothpicks.

It's time to grab one and run!
ALL these new treats from Merrick are:
  • Made in the USA with no ingredients from China
  • Grain free and gluten free
  • Made with no corn, wheat or soy
  • Made with all-natural ingredients: No artificial colors, preservatives, sorbic acid or sodium copper chlorophylin

RSVP for #TreatRight Twitter Party for a chance to win from Merrick Pet Care!

We hope you'll join us at the #TreatRight Twitter Party this Sunday, Oct. 26, 8-9 p.m. ET. There will be plenty of chances to win yummy prize packs from Merrick and lots of fun too!
Here's what you can do for a chance to win before Thursday's party:
  1. Mark your calendar for Sunday, 8-9pm ET for the #TreatRight Twitter party 
  2. Be sure to pick out a couple of cute photos to share of your dog during the party to share the fun (and sharing photos–or any kind of engagement in the party–makes you eligible to win prizes!)
  3. Visit the RSVP post to enter the three pre-party giveaways. (Even if you can’t attend the party, you’re eligible to enter the pre-party giveaways!)
Hope to see you Sunday!


We are working with Merrick through our partnership in Event Barkers to produce this Twitter party and share product news with our readers. Prizes will be provided and shipped by Merrick. To Dog With Love only shares information we believe in. All opinions expressed herein are our own.




Monday, October 20, 2014

RSVP for #TreatRight Twitter Party #Giveaway


We're excited to bring you our next Event Barkers Twitter Party filled with lots of yummy goodies from Merrick's new line up of all-natural dog treats. There are a variety of flavors and treat types that any dog would love!

From biscuits and cookies to soft, chewy training treats and dental chews, Merrick has every #TreatRight occasion covered for you and your pup!

Rocco is enjoying sampling all these treats and you'll get the chance to win some too in both our pre-party and #TreatRight Twitter Party giveaways! Read all the way down to peruse some terrific prize packs and learn how to enter our pre-party giveaways that are open now!

We love that these treats are grain-free and gluten-free. And like Merrick pet food, Merrick treats are made in the USA with no ingredients from China.



#TreatRight at a Glance
  • Who: @MerrickPetCare and @EventBarkers, hosted by @DogTipper, @ToDogWithLove, and @AllThingsDog
  • What: #TreatRight Twitter Party
  • When: Sunday, Oct. 26, 8-9pm ET, 7-8pm CT, 6-7pm MT, 5-6pm PT
  • Where: On Twitter
  • How: Enter the pre-party giveaways in the widget below. You can enter these giveaways even if you’re not on Twitter or not able to make the party. To enter the party giveaways, just join the party Sunday night and participate in the fun! You can use Twitter.com, Hootsuite (our choice) or join our dedicated TweetChat room: http://tweetchat.com/room/TreatRight.

We'll be telling you more about these treats later this week, but I CAN tell you now that it's easy to #TreatRight when you've got this kind of selection of yummy, natural treats to choose from. With flavors like Brauts N Tots, Grammy’s Pot Pie and Turducken, and ingredients that include real meat, fresh fruit and veggies, it's hard to go wrong! 


Prizes


Here’s a look at the more than $750 in prizes we'll be giving out both before and during the #TreatRight Twitter Party!

3 Pre-Party Winners each receive: 
  • Merrick treat box (includes five bags of Merrick all-natural dog treats)
  • 4-pound bag of Grain-Free Chicken or Grain-Free Real Texas Beef dry food
  • Total value approx. $70!

6 Party Winners each receive:
  • Merrick treat box (includes five bags of Merrick all-natural dog treats)
  • 4-pound bag of Grain-Free Chicken or Grain-Free Real Texas Beef dry food
  • Total value approx. $70!

One Grand Prize winner receives a grain-free prize pack of treats and food:
  • Merrick treat box (includes five bags of Merrick all-natural dog treats)
  • 12-pound bag of Grain-Free dry food with the winner's choice of protein
  • $40 in additional wet food, dry food or treats (winner's choice!)
  • Total value approx. $120!

All our winners will get help from Merrick's pet parent relations team to customize packages for preferred flavors from the Kitchen Bites, Power Bites, Jerky Chip Treats and Dental Chews lines of Merrick treats. 

How to Enter

The widget below will be used to pull three pre-party winners who will be selected at random:
  • One for RSVPing for #TreatRight
  • One for Tweeting a pre-written Tweet about the party
  • One for entering any of the entry methods
NOTE: There are many ways to enter but you can enter with as many or as few entry methods as you choose! Get started by simply entering your email address and name in the widget below. Good luck!





We are working with Merrick through our partnership in Event Barkers to produce this Twitter party and share product news with our readers. Prizes will be provided and shipped by Merrick. To Dog With Love only shares information we believe in. All opinions expressed herein are our own.

Friday, October 17, 2014

Purina #BetterWithPets Summit 2014

Early this week we took a quick trip up to NYC for the Purina Better With Pets Summit, where scientists, visionaries, and innovators gathered to share stories how innovation is helping create a brighter future for people and pets.

There were 15 amazing speakers -- from rocket scientist Mark Deadrick who printed prosthetics for a Chihuahua to 14-year-old inventor Brooke Martin who invented the ICPooch so you can video chat and treat your dog remotely. 

Every speaker and presenter was fascinating, on such a wide variety of topics. We're looking forward to posting some of the videos on our favorite topics in the next few weeks.

In the meantime, here's a quick look at just some of the highlights.





Mark Deadrick spoke about how he used a 3D printer to make a prosthetic device to help TurboRoo -- a Chihuahua born without front legs -- regain his mobility.


Once again, John Hockenberry, host of public radio's The Takeaway, was brilliant as emcee of the event. Here he has some fun with TurboRoo, showing him how to do some wheelies!

Just a few more highlights included:
  • Rita Garza of the Urban Resource Institute in New York, taking about the URI Pals program which allows survivors of abuse to live alongside their pets in shelters
  • Dan Smith, a Purina researcher, talked about imagining a better future with pets, including helping them live longer lives by reducing the amount they eat to keep them lean and healthy
  • Joshua Leeds and Lisa Spector, the creators of Through a Dog's and Cat's Ear sound therapy to help pets with anxiety
  • Janet Jackson, a Purina researcher who talked about advancements in canine cognitive health through the discovery of MCTs (medium chain triglycerides) that help dogs that are showing signs of confusion similar to dementia
There were lots more amazing and entertaining speakers including poets, a comedian and rappers! We'll share more with you in coming posts!

We also had a terrific time seeing old pals. Here's our fun group selfie!

Clockwise from bottom: Dan from Purina, Roxanne from Champion of My Heart,  Rosalyn from Sugar the Golden Retriever,  Jen from DOGthusiast; Pam from Simply Southern Mom, Felissa from Two Little Cavaliers and me!

The fun and games continue every Friday with FitDog Friday, the weekly Blog Hop brought to you by To Dog With LoveSlimDoggy and My GBGV Life to promote a healthy active lifestyle for pets (and their people, too!). Join in every Friday by linking up your FitDog story or visiting the blogs in the Hop.





Thursday, October 16, 2014

Fido's Freebie Friday is #BetterWithPets

Welcome to another edition of Fido's Freebie Friday (FFF), the weekly giveaway blog hop for all things pet!

This week we had a fun (and quick!) trip to NYC for the Purina Better With Pets Summit, the daylong event that brought together scientists and pet experts and showcase innovations that are helping enhance relationships between people and pets. We'll share more about Better With Pets tomorrow and in a few more upcoming posts.

This is Turbo Roo, the little Chihuahua born without front legs and the beneficiary of a prosthetic made witcutting edge 3D printing technology that helps keep him mobile.  We met Turbo Roo at Better With Pets!

Also, next week stay tuned for another fun Event Barkers Twitter Party! We'll announce our sponsor this Monday, and as always, there will be LOTS of fun and prizes.

In the meantime, check out the selection of this week's giveaways in the Fido's Freebie Friday Blog Hop below. You can enter them all or add your own! We make it easy by linking them up all in one place.

Here's how to participate

The rules for Fido's Freebie Friday are super simple. Here's all you need to know to link up:
  • You have up to 45 characters to describe your prize and include an expiration date
  • Fido's Freebie Friday Blog Hop is open to posts with prizes for pet products or services, including pet-related or pet-themed items for owners. Use your specific post url to link up.
  • Or simply enter the giveaways that interest you for a chance to win some fabulous prizes!
Fido's Freebie Friday opens each Thursday afternoon for linkups at 4 p.m. ET, and renews each week at the same time with a new listing. Link up anytime during the week!

For more information, you can check out the help page. Your hosts are All Things Dog BlogDogTipper and To Dog With Love.

Happy (s)hopping!



Individual rules of entry and guidelines for winning may apply to each listing. All Things Dog Blog, Doggies and Stuff, DogTipper and To Dog With Love take no responsibility for the legality of the rules governing the listings on other sites and giveaways that are posted here. We simply provide this forum as a gathering place for pet products to be offered. Fulfillment of each giveaway is done by the blog conducting the giveaway, not by the hosts of this giveaway hop; please contact the giveaway host with any questions regarding a giveaway or giveaway prize.

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