Saturday, February 26, 2011

Travel to Italy with your dog: Seeing the sites of Rome

When we traveled to Italy with Cosmo, seeing the sites of Rome was as much fun for Cosmo as it was for us! There was plenty to sniff as well as see and we were able to do many of our excursions by foot and paw, although taking a quick subway ride was also no problem with a dog.

First stop was the Colosseum, one of the grandest of all Roman monuments. Then we walked past the Arch of Constantine down Via di San Gregorio...

... toward the Circus Maximus.  Once known as THE place for chariot racing, there's not much left to see there now. But it is possible to imagine the splendor of the site and now it's an excellent place for a dog walk. A little further down the road we had hoped to visit the Bocca della Verità, or Mouth of Truth... 

Here, Audrey Hepburn and Gregory Peck test the legend of the Mouth of Truth in the 1953 movie Roman Holiday. The story is that the sculpture represents the face of an ancient god who knows if you are telling the truth or lieing! If you tell a lie while inserting your hand in its mouth, it will bite it off! But since the sculpture is now sectioned off as part of a tour of the Church of Santa Maria in Cosmedin, we were not allowed in to try out Cosmo's paw at the truth! While we found dogs are seldom allowed inside of museums and churches, there are still plenty of historic sites to see from the outside.

Next we walked along the Tiber River toward the area known as the Jewish Ghetto, where we passed Rome's main synagogue near the east bank of the Tiber.

Strolling through the Jewish Ghetto, we saw many shops, restaurants and bakeries...

... and stopped for a quick bite of gelato! Most food establishments in Rome do allow dogs, making it very easy to enjoy the journey with your canine companion! After continuing on to the market in Piazza del Campo dei Fiori, we headed on to Piazza Navona.

We enjoyed views of the fountains and activity in the Piazza...

... as well as being able to spend some time viewing the Pantheon nearby. This time Cosmo was allowed inside...

... where he expressed worthy admiration of  the coffers in the concrete dome, and the central opening, or oculus, to the sky!

Nearby, Cosmo provided equal admiration to some meat -- after all he is a dog! The nice lady slicing the mortadella didn't mind too much until Cosmo leaned in just a little closer!!

Later than evening we strolled back toward the Piazza Navona...

And stopped at the famous Four Rivers Fountain. Then it was on to our new evening ritual of hot chocolate, Italian style.

As usual, Cosmo gets to enjoy the experience right along with us and was typically offered some tasty treat by the restauranteurs. After a long day enjoying all that Rome has to offer, there's only one thing to do...

Cosmo dreams about the adventures of the day and whatever lies ahead!...

If you're planning a trip to Italy or an international trip with your dog, here are a few other posts you might enjoy:
And now it's time to check out what our pals are doing at the Pet Blogger Hop!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Help rescue animals across the U.S. with Pedigree and in Atlanta tonight with Mostly Mutts!

We love Pedigree for all they do for rescue animals and we love Betty White and adorable Yogi in this video.

Like Betty White says, you can help the animals who need it most at

And if you're in Atlanta, join us tonight at HOBNOB For the Hounds at -- where else -- HOBNOB Neighborhood Tavern where we'll be helping the doggies and kitties at Mostly Mutts Animal Rescue and Adoptions.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Wordless Wednesday: Early Spring Edition!

One of the things I love most about Atlanta is that come February, just about any day can be a glorious Spring day! Enjoy our early Spring... these pics snapped this morning! 

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Pet Blogger Hop / From Rome to Atlanta

High above the Spanish Steps in Rome, Cosmo Havanese enjoys the view and watching the bride and groom below. Can you see them?

We still have plenty more pictures and posts to come from our trip to Italy including exploring the sights of Rome, day trip to Frascati, the road to Milan and a day at Lake Como! There were also plenty of great meals and shopping along the way.

If you're planning a trip to Italy or an international trip with your dog, here are a few posts you might enjoy:
Then, back in Atlanta we've come across an amazing deal. If you are even remotely thinking about coming to BarkWorld Expo, now is the time to fetch a few tickets. Until February 28, you can purchase tickets for this pet industry social media event for 50 percent off! The event is scheduled for Sept. 29 - Oct. 1 in Atlanta, Ga., with speakers from Yahoo! and Dogster already on tap as well as bunches of other speakers and activities that look really fun, interactive AND educational. See you there!

And now, it's time to hippity-hop on over to the Pet Blogger Hop!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

A special not so Wordless Wednesday, Westminster style!

We had lots of fun with photos at the #WKCPawpawty!
Thanks to Rick Rockhill for providing this photo of
a nice overview of Madison Square Garden
Pet lovers across the country watched the drama and excitement of the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show over the past few days. But we had the opportunity to experience it in a completely different way this year as we watched it on TV and shared the experience with thousands of our friends on Twitter.

Social media has brought the world closer together in ways we never would have dreamed about just a few years back. It's about much, much more than the "social media gurus" or the 5-second news cycle. It's about creating a community and enriching an experience no matter what  your  interests -- from dogs to diapers and about everything else you can imagine.

@PedigreeUS provided some great behind-the-scenes photos! 
Starting with the first broadcast on Monday night, plenty of folks across the country started using hashtags such as #WKC and #Westminster to hear what other were saying about the show. The USA Network hosted a feed, where we could follow all the conversations about the dog show and you can still check it out to see all the post show comments and photos.

Then last night we joined a special viewing party to help raise money for the shelter pets at Save-A-Dog in Grayslake, Ill. Sponsored by Pedigree and hosted by #Pawpawty creator Frugal Dougal, people and their pets who tweet (known as the anipals) followed the hashtag #WKCPawpawty. Pedigree donated $1 to the shelter for everyone who tweeted the special hashtag and there also were quizzes and prize giveaways to make the evening even more fun! In fact, we even had our own "Best in Show" photo competitions and you can see some of the great photo's on Frugal Dougal's blog.

Right before the Best in Show winner was announced, the folks from
@PedigreeUS snapped this shot of the winning dog,
 GCH Foxcliffe Hickory Wind, the Scottish Deerhound

And if that wasn't enough, the Twitter band, The Shibbering Cheetos  kicked off the party with a concert and my own Cosmo Havanese served up the color commentary and play-by-by so that our pals without cable or from different countries could also join in the excitement of our country's oldest dog show. An interesting tidbit from the Westminster Kennel Club web site states that the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show, first held in 1877, is America's second-longest continuously held sporting event, behind only the Kentucky Derby. You can read more about the show's history here, and it sounds every bit as glamorous as it is today.

So at the 135 Annual Westminster Dog Show, social media provided us the opportunity to share the experience, photos and great behind the scenes stories with friends who were at the show in person and with pals from across the country and world. Host Frugal Dougal with his mom Lynn Haigh, experienced the show from our tweets and photos while "watching" from their computer in the U.K. (at 4 a.m.!).

While I've always wanted to attend Westminster in person -- and still intend to -- I can't think of a better way to enjoy the show than we did last night with the many great friends from around the world who share our love for dogs. It was truly a Best in Show experience!
Congratulations to this year's Best in Show, GCH Foxcliffe Hickory Wind!
(photo: Westminster Kennel Club)

Monday, February 14, 2011

Lots to Love on Valentine's Day!

Love is literally in the air as Cosmo Havanese jumps through hearts this Valentine's Day! And there's plenty of stuff to love today! 
  • We love that this weekend's #PawPawty raised nearly $1,600 for the Animal Welfare League of Queensland, an organization that takes care of about 10,000 stray and abandoned animals each year and is helping animals currently displaced because of the flooding in Australia.
  • We love that for every dollar donated to AWLQ this weekend, Pedigree matched with an equal donation to rescue organization Save-a-Pet in Grayslake, Ill.
  • We love that the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show starts tonight live on USA Network from 8-9 p.m. ET and on CNBC from 9-11 p.m. ET. Hound, Toy, Non-Sporting and Herding Groups are up tonight!
  • We love we'll be watching Westminster's closing night on Tuesday with our pals on Twitter where Pedigree will donate a dollar to Save-a-Pet  for every tweet using the hashtag #WKCPawpawty. On Tuesday, catch the broadcast live on USA Network from 8-11 p.m. ET for the Sporting, Working and Terrier Groups and Best in Show. And join us on Twitter for the viewing party! (Spoiler alert: the West Coast telecast is delayed, so if you want to enjoy the drama unfold on TV, careful what you watch on Twitter!  
  • We love our breed and we'll be rooting for the Havanese tonight! And since not all Havanese are as lucky -- or spoiled -- as Cosmo, check out the HavToHavIt General Store to benefit Havanese Rescue.
And finally, we love our Valentine's Day playlist. Enjoy!

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Pet Blogger Hop / Love is in the Air #Pawpawty!

Hosted by @frugaldougal,  #PawPawty fun continues round the
clock, starting at 2 p.m. ET today and continuing through 2 p.m. ET
Sunday, Feb. 13. Joining a pack of anipal volunteers,
@CosmoHavanese will be your quizmaster, giving away
fabulous prizes from generous sponsors,  starting at 10 p.m.  ET
tonight!  He'll be back at it at 10 a.m. ET on Sunday, spinning
some romantic tunes for the pawpawtiers! 
It's time again to #Pawpawty! Once a month the animals on Twitter -- known as the anipals -- get together for virtual fun and games and raise REAL money for an animal organization in need. This month TWO animal shelters will benefit thanks to our pals at Pedigree!

First, the anipals  will be raising money for the Animal Welfare League of Queensland. Located in Australia, AWLQ was mostly unaffected by the unprecedented flooding in Queensland and has been able to care for those animals who were caught up in the floods.

Then, Pedigree stepped up to help a SECOND shelter in the United States! Pedigree will match** every dollar donated to the Pawpawty on February 12 -13 and donate those funds to Save-A-Pet in Grayslake, Ill., an organization dedicated to finding loving, quality homes for each cat and dog in its care. The adoption center is currently responsible for 500 animals.

If you've never been to a #PawPawty on Twitter, you can learn more about it at Every month there's a different theme and this month it's "Love is in the Air," just in time for Valentine's Day! So dress up in your Valentine's day finest or just come as you are, either way we'll know your heart is in it as we help the anipals who need it most!

**Maximum matched fund donation is $2,000

Now, let's go to the hop!

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Giveaway winner: For The Love of Dogs Book!

W is for Winner! It's time to spin the magic wheel and announce the winner of our  book giveaway! One lucky reader will receive a copy of For the Love of Dogs: an A-to-Z Primer for Dog Lovers of All Ages.

In the spirit of this book that uses all 26 letters of the alphabet to describe our love for dogs, TDWL readers were asked to enter by stating what any letter of the alphabet meant to them!

And the winner is...... *giving the wheel a hearty spin... t-t-t-t-t-t-t--t--t---t----t-----t-------t*

Pup Fan! who said, "B is for my Beautiful Bella!" You can see for yourself Miss Beautiful Bella on Pup Fan's blog I Still Want More Puppies.

Congrats to Pup Fan and thanks to all who entered. You can read all the wonderful comments here!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Wordless Wednesday: Havanese puppies and a dog show!

No, they're not mine! I met these cute Havanese pups at the dog show in Atlanta last weekend! 

Havanese resting before show time. This is the part you don't see on TV!

... and a final fluff and puff before going in the ring...

Taking a walk around the ring for the judge...

Every dog has his time on the table.

The best from each breed go to group. In the Toy Group on this day the win went to the Pug.

If you're in Atlanta for the show in Jonesboro, don't miss this Greek restaurant. Best dog show food ever!

Then there's the shopping. And lots of it!

After the show... hey, mom! Where'd the treats go?!

Friday, February 4, 2011

Chew on this and GREENIES will donate to AAHA Helping Pets Fund

Do I know that good oral care can help increase a pet's lifespan? You betcha! Do I brush Cosmo's teeth? Well ... uh ...  no, but it seems neither do 99 percent of U.S. dog owners.

So when I received this info from the nice folks at GREENIES, it made me feel just a little better about neglecting Cosmo's oral hygiene choosing the best treats for good dental health.

Cosmo always enjoys a good chew, and that can be a good thing. But as it turns out, not all dental chews are created equal.

That's why the American Veterinary Dental College created the Veterinary Oral Health Council (VOHC) -- to establish testing protocols and a Seal of Acceptance for pet products that meet established standards in helping reduce plaque and tartar buildup.

And ... ta-da! ... GREENIES® Canine Dental Chews -- with their special chewy texture for maximum tooth contact -- have the magic VOHC seal for both plaque and tartar control.  See more products that have been awarded the VOHC seal here.

Now, just in time for National Pet Dental Health month, here's what you can do to help pets most in need of veterinary dental care.

The Campaign. The GREENIES® Brand is partnering with the American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA) to support its Helping Pets Fund, a charitable organization that provides financial support for sick or injured pets that need veterinary care. This fund makes a wide range of veterinary services available for pets whose owners have either abandoned them or do not have the financial means to pay for treatment options. 

GREENIES’® donations will help to provide life-saving oral surgeries for dogs and cats in need.  

So how can you help? Just spread the word!
  • For every blog post written about VOHC, The GREENIES® Brand will donate $25 to the AAHA Helping Pets Fund
  • For every use of #VOHC on Twitter (either through an original post or a re-tweet), The GREENIES® Brand will donate $1 to the AAHA Helping Pets Fund
Easy! If you'd like to help spread the word, feel free to bite on anything in this blog post and carry it on over to your blog or twitter!

Cosmo Havanese

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Book review and giveaway: For the Love of Dogs: An A-to-Z Primer for Dog Lovers!

Today is book review Thursday!... ok, I just made that up. But since I  just received a beautiful new book about dogs in the mail, it IS the perfect day for both a book review and ... ta-da ... a giveway!

For the Love of Dogs: An A-to-Z Primer for Dog Lovers of All Ages is the latest in the series of the For the Love of ... books. Written by Allison Weiss Entrekin, editor of Doggie Aficionado magazine, this whimsical book is a fun read and tribute to dogs of all sorts.

From A-to-Z,  you'll learn an interesting doggie tidbit for every letter of the alphabet. Some answers revealed in this book:
  • Does Bo Obama share the President's bed?
  • What instinct do all dogs share?
  • Which breed was originally bred to help fishermen catch fish that escaped from their hooks?
And while we desperately hoped that "H" stood for Havanese,  we weren't disappointed with Entrekin's choice. Our favorite however, was the choice of It's Me or the Dog's Victoria Stilwell, who wrote in the book's forward, "to me, 'P' is for Positive -- always has been, always will be. "

With colorful illustrations by Mark Anderson, this is a charming book, appropriate for all ages. So whether your dog is "A" for Adopted or "Z" for catching some ZZZs there's something for every dog lover in this book.

How to enter our giveaway!

And now, for the FUN part, since we LOVE giving stuff away! Enter our little contest for the chance to win a copy of For the Love of Dogs: An A-to-Z Primer for Dog Lovers of All Ages.

To enter, simply leave a comment on this blog post and write what any letter in the alphabet means to you. For example, C is for Cosmo Havanese, my high-flying buddy and best furry pal!

Entries are open to U.S. residents only until midnight EST Wednesday, Feb. 9 and the winner will be announced on this blog on Thursday, Feb. 10.  The winner will by chosen by

Disclaimer: The nice folks at Triumph Books sent us this book to review and are providing one for the giveaway.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Wordless Wednesday: GroundHog Cosmo Havanese says spring is on its way!

Cosmo Havanese emerges from his burrow without a shadow in sight! "Spring is on its way," proclaims the newest springtime prognosticator. 

The uncanny resemblance...