Please Help My Senior Dog Lose Weight

For those of us that have senior dogs, another concern we need to consider is if they are carrying extra weight on their bodies. Not only do we need to help them maintain joint health, we need to make sure they stay at a healthy weight. If they gain weight, it can cause medical conditions and a lower quality of life. So, let’s discuss how to help my senior dog lose weight.


How to Help My Senior Dog Lose WeightWhat Causes Weight Gain in Senior Dogs?

There are a number of causes in weight gain for dogs in general, but I think it is especially important to maintain a healthy weight going into your dog’s senior years. Why? Healthy weight will help them live a longer, more quality life!

Possible causes of weight gain in your senior dog

Consuming More Calories Than Needed: Similar to humans, dog’s metabolisms change as they get older.

Not Exercising Enough: Your fur baby may be spending more time sleeping than running around like when they were puppies. Less exercise, means fewer calories burned.

Pregnancy: If you haven’t spayed your female, it is possible she may pregnant. Even as they age, they will still get an estrus cycle. It may not come as often; however, they can still get pregnant.

Retaining Fluid: This can be due to medical conditions such as tumors or diseases in the dog’s internal organs. It can also occur if your dog has a shunt placed in his/her liver or if they have a congenital heart condition. This will not look like your typical overweight belly…you will definitely want to talk to a vet if you notice this type of enlarged belly.

Bloat: This happens when your dog gobbles his or her food too fast. Your dog will tend not only to gulp their food down, but they also gulp excess air. This will also affect your dog’s heart rate, ability to breathe, and will cause pain in the abdomen. Please take your dog to the vet immediately as this is a life-threatening scenario.

Prescription Drugs: There are some drugs that will cause weight gain in your senior pup as well. Talk with your veterinarian to see if this is one of the reasons your dog is gaining weight.

Medical Reasons

Hypothyroidism: Yes, the dreaded thyroid issues that affect humans as well. Similar to humans, hypothyroidism can slow your dog’s metabolism and make him/her gain weight.

Cushing’s Disease: This disease is caused by an overproduction of glucocorticoid hormones that regulate protein, carbohydrates, and metabolism. There are three types of Cushing’s:

  1. Pituitary Cushing’s; Caused by a tumor in the pituitary gland, too much adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH) is produced. ACTH stimulates the adrenal gland on how much cortisol is released into the system. According to the VCA, this accounts for 85-90% of all cases.
  2. Adrenal Cushing’s: This condition is caused by a tumor on the adrenal glands to where it produces too much cortisol as well.
  3. Iatrogenic Cushing’s: Iatrogenic Cushing’s is caused by excessive steroid use over a long period. It may have been prescribed for a legitimate medical reason; however, if used for too long, it can create excessive cortisol which will cause weight gain.

Diabetes: “Sugar Diabetes” is the type of diabetes seen in most dogs where your dog’s metabolism has a hard time converting food into energy. It can cause a higher appetite and thirst, which in turn can cause weight gain…but…it can also cause weight loss. If you are concerned, please talk to your veterinarian immediately.

I have heard from many older humans that “getting old is not for the faint of heart (or the weak!)”. It always makes me giggle, but it also makes me think more about what I need to do to ensure my dogs stay healthy into their senior years (and cats), as well as myself.

Talk to Your Veterinarian

Even though there are so many causes that MAY affect your dog’s weight, it is of utmost importance to consult a veterinarian if there are any concerns. Your veterinarian will be able to examine your dog and do diagnostic tests to rule out certain causes; as well as diagnose your senior pup.


Benefits to Helping My Senior Dog Lose Weight

Not only will your dog look great, he or she will feel much better when at a healthy weight. Your dog will also have additional health benefits that come with staying healthy.

1. Increased Energy: As your dog begins to lose weight, you will notice a difference in their energy level. (maybe even a little pep in their step!) Most dogs were bred for certain jobs such as herding, chasing away intruders, hunting, etc. These activities require energy, so when your senior dog loses weight, he or she feels more invigorated and able to do their job (even if it is really only running after a ball at that time!).

2. Lower Risk of Long Term Health Issues: This is an extremely important aspect to helping your senior dog lose weight. If the dog remains at a healthy weight through life, there is a lower risk of long term health issues such as diabetes, intestinal issues, skin conditions, heart disease, and even breathing issues.

3. Lower Risk of Arthritis:If your dog is overweight, the extra pounds put a lot of pressure on his or her joints and bone structure. As a senior, your dog may be prone to arthritis anyway; however, if he or she is overweight, the pain can be worse than if he or she is at a healthy weight.

4. A Possible Longer Lifespan: An overweight dog can see a decrease in lifespan due to the possible medical issues that arise. According to the AKC, dogs who are just 10% overweight have a 1/3 decreased lifespan as well as a higher propensity for heart, kidney, and liver disease.

As we can see, there are definitely benefits to helping our senior pups lose weight. We want them to live a good-long, healthy life with us, right?

Activities to Help My Senior Dog Lose Weight

When your senior dog is overweight, there are a few things you can do to help them lose weight. Here are a few activities that can help.

Increase activity slowly: You are probably able to tell that your overweight, senior dog moves a bit slower than the average dog. In this case, you will want to start slow when getting your dog active. Take short walks at first or limit the time playing fetch. You can also let them swim (if they like water) to help alleviate the pressure on their joints.

Reduce Stress in Their Environment: Sometimes stress can cause a dog to overeat, so it is important to minimize stress in their environment. This may mean reducing noise levels in the home, keeping them calm during fireworks displays or storms, but it may also include monitoring how people and other animals interact with them.

Tools you can also use to help reduce stress as well.
  • Thundershirts: The vest applies constant, gentle pressure to help calm their fears, anxieties, and stress. It’s like a constant gentle hug!
  • Happy Hoodie: This head band goes over your dog’s ears to help with noise reduction. It will also help keep your dog’s ears and head warm.

  • Supplements: There are a number of supplements on the market to help alleviate stress. You will find them in the form of drops, sprays, treats, etc… For dogs who do not like chews, you can put a few drops on their food or water or crush the pills and sprinkle over their food. If your dog loves treats or chews, finding a supplement chew would be a fantastic idea.

Make Them “Work” For Their Food and Treats:Another activity to help your senior dog lose weight is to make them work for their food and treats. I don’t mean they have to go and get a job or anything, but you can make it a mission to get to the food bowl!

One idea is you can move the food bowl around the house so your dog has to find it. If you put the bowl upstairs, your dog will have to walk up the stairs to eat dinner. Make it fun…maybe put the bowl in the kitchen 1 day and then in the bedroom the next. Your dog will figure out where the food is pretty quickly.

Another idea is to use slow feeders or use interactive toys that hold kibble/treats. This will help keep your dog from gulping food, but also gives them something to work for. I use the Kong Stuff a Ball Toy for Chai, and she is entertained for hours.

Talk to Your Veterinarian

These are just a few options to help get your fur baby more active and to be able to drop some of that extra weight. Of course, it is important to speak with your veterinarian regarding any types of supplements or training ideas. They will be able to give you insight on what may be best for your dog.

Food to Help My Senior Dog Lose Weight 

Lastly, (but not least!) the quality and quantity of food your dog eats plays a major role in their weight loss. It is important to find food that will help your dog lose weight, but not at expense of overall nutrition.


If you live in the United States, you know that even though correct portion sizes remain the same for humans, many of our restaurants serve larger portions and then we tend to increase what is on our plates at home. Now that is a little different for everyone (like extreme athletes, kids, etc…), but as we age, the harder it is to work off that big bowl of pasta.

Consider our senior dogs…the quantity of food is going to rely on breed, size, age, medical condition and activity level. According to the AKC, you can calculate how many calories your dog needs by using the Resting Energy Requirement (RER) formula.

RER Formula
  1. Take your dog’s weight in Kg, multiply by 30, and add 70 or Take your dog’s weight in lbs and divide by 2.2 and then multiply by 30, and add 70.
  2. Factor in their Metabolic Energy Requirement (MER) based on health and if they were spayed or neutered.
    1. Weight loss – 1 x RER
    2. Neutered/Spayed – 1.6 x RER
    3. Intact Adult – 1.8 x RER

3. Talk to your veterinarian to have them calculate the RER and to see how your dog can lose weight safely.


The quality of your dog’s food is a very important factor in helping them lose weight. A lot of processed dog foods will contain carb fillers and not enough of the proteins and nutrients needed. Like in humans, proteins and vegetables help keep your dog full for longer.

I won’t recommend any specific food here because I feel it is a conversation you need to have with your veterinarian. There are so many foods on the market, it can be overwhelming, so talking with your doggy doctor is best. The only thing I can recommend is to choose a quality food where the ingredients are easy to read and understand. This will mean higher proteins and veggies, and lower carbs and fat.


Don’t forget treats either! Monitor the amount and types of treats you give your dog. If you are feeding your baby a healthy meal, but give him or her processed treats, you may not be progressing in the weight loss journey. Instead of feeding your dog processed treats, you can change it up and give them fresh fruits and veggies such as cucumbers, carrots, celery, blueberries, bananas, or apples.


Phew! That was a lot of information to get through, but I know it is important for yours and my dog’s health! Let’s consider all the options to help our senior dogs lose weight and live a long, healthy life.

There are so many food brands and supplement options that I highly recommend talking to your vet before choosing a specific brand.

Let me know if you found anything that worked for your senior dog. Are there any products or activities you found helpful?

Joint Supplements Beneficial for Senior Dogs with Arthritis?

My fur baby, Beckham, is beginning to show signs of his senior age (at 10 years old). It is a little harder for him to get up from laying down, as well as getting up onto the bed or the couch. This made me think…are joint supplements beneficial for senior dogs? Are they good for arthritis?

In talking with Beckham’s veterinarian, she says, yes! Joint supplements are beneficial for senior dogs; however there are some things to look for.

Let’s discuss how you can tell if your senior dog has arthritis. What types of joint supplements are available, and what is the best supplement for your dog.

Of course, before you make any decisions, please consult with your veterinarian!

Are Joint Supplements Beneficial for Senior Dogs with Arthritis?

How to Tell if Your Senior Dog has Arthritis

Arthritis is common among senior dogs as well as large breed dogs. Like in humans, their joints can deteriorate and cause pain and mobility issues.

What is Arthritis?

The full name this disease is known by is Osteoarthritis (OA) or Degenerative Joint Disease (DJD). This is an inflammation or degeneration of the joints to where dogs experience pain and inflammation of the joints that interfere with daily activities.

Basically, in healthy dogs, the cartilage acts as a cushion in the joint to allow fluid movement. In OA or DJD, the cartilage is broken down where the joint becomes inflamed, painful, and your dog can lose mobility.`

A veterinarian will diagnose the disease by performing a physical examination and possible over diagnostics such as X-Rays/other imaging. If you are suspicious about arthritis in your dog, please contact your veterinarian to properly diagnose the condition.

Causes of Osteoarthritis

There is no single cause of arthritis; however, there are many determining factors that can be the reason for your dog’s joint pain. Here are a few things to consider:

  • Age
  • Weight – if your dog is overweight, he or she may be prone to arthritis.
  • Body Condition – how is your dog built?
  • Activity level – is your dog active or more sedentary?
  • Repetitive stress – dogs who compete in agility, flyball, etc can be affected
  • Nutrition – do you feed your dog a nutritious diet?
  • Orthopedic Surgery – Has your dog had surgery?
  • Breed – Is your dog a larger breed? Is his/her breed predispositioned to arthritis?
  • Infection – For example – Lyme disease can affect the joints.
Signs to Look For

You know your dog best. Any time they move wrong, cough, or even sneeze, you will be on alert, right? Well, let’s break down a few signs to look for that may be concerning:

It will be difficult to detect signs early on; however, you will possibly see the following in moderate to severe cases:

  • Difficulty getting up from laying down
  • Stiffness in the joints
  • Lethargy (lack of energy)
  • Reluctance to do normal activities such as run or jump
  • Weight gain
  • Loss of muscle mass
  • Hard time squatting to urinate
  • Irritability
  • Crankiness when being petted or touched.

I started noticing Beckham was getting a little more cranky when my youngest son and our puppy, Chai, start to run around the house. When they run by him, he doesn’t get up to play, so he plays the role of  “fun police” and barks at them going by.

Beckham also does the old man stance when getting up from laying down or when getting up on the couch. I can tell he is experiencing some stiffness in his back hips and legs. It now takes a little longer for him to do these things, so I decided to talk to his veterinarian regarding joint supplements.

Treatment Options

There are different options you can use; however there is no cure for arthritis. Again…talk to your veterinarian regarding the best options for your dog.

  1. Diet: It is important that your senior dog is on a proper diet. This will help keep your dog at an ideal weight to help alleviate the pressure off of his or her joints.
  2. Pain Medications: There are a few options to help alleviate pain. Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS) are first in line to help.
    1. A couple options your veterinarian may prescribe are: Carprofen, Deracoxib, Grabiprant, etc.
    2. On rare occasion, your veterinarian may prescribe corticosteroid such as Gabapentin.
  3. Chiropractic / Physical Therapy / Acupuncture: In some cases, your veterinarian may recommend physical therapy to help alleviate pain and increase mobility.
  4. Surgery: Depending on your dog’s arthritis prognosis, the veterinarian may suggest surgery to help with the pain. Surgeries such as total hip replacement or knee replacements may be in line…or even fusion surgeries.
  5. Supplements: Veterinarians may also recommend joint supplements as they have been known to be a safe, long term treatment for arthritis. These supplements are: Glucosomine, Chondritin, and Green Lipped Mussel (GLM).

So…why supplements? How do they actually help alleviate pain and inflammation due to Osteoarthritis?

What Do Joint Supplements Do to Help Arthritis?

Joint supplements can help reduce the pain and inflammation in your dog’s joints; however, they will not cure the condition. They will help treat symptoms and create an overall better quality of life.

To Consider Before You Buy:

Here are a few points to consider when looking into purchasing joint supplements:

First, they will not work immediately…it takes a little time for the supplement to build up in your dog’s system and can take up to a couple months to see improvement.

Second, they will not work if your dog is obese. The weight on your dog can put a lot of pressure on his or her joints that even with supplements, can be painful. Consider using supplements when your dog is at a healthy weight.

In the last section, I talked about what types of supplements that are beneficial, but let’s take a closer look at Glucosamine, Chondritin, and Green Lipped Mussel. How do they help alleviate the symptoms from OA?


According to the AKC website, Glucosamine is a naturally occurring compound (made of sugar and amino acids) that can be used to alleviate pain and stiffness. It is made in your dog’s cartilage, but it is also helps rebuild cartilage.

Glucosamine is safe to use long term. It is extracted from crabs, lobster or shrimp shells and will come in 3 types.


Chondritin Sulfate is also a naturally occurring compound that works to stimulate cartilage repair and is used in conjunction with Glucosamine. It can be found in food sources such as fish, bird cartilage, pig trachea and even squid cartilage.

A chondritin sulfate supplement can help hydrate your dog’s cartilage and help keep it from breaking down further. It reduces pain, inflammation, and can help improve mobility.

Green Lipped Mussel

GLM is an extract that comes from New Zealand’s native green lipped mussels, and includes the omega-3 fatty acids, amino acids, antioxidants, and vitamins/minerals. It is used to help protect your dog’s joints and decrease inflammation (and works for humans, too!).

Best Joint Supplements For Your Dog

In my conversation with Beckham’s veterinarian regarding the best joint supplements on the market, she gave me a few pointers. She told me there are only a couple supplements she approves as a lot of products don’t include the quality ingredients needed to actually work. It’s also the fact that certain websites/stores will basically sell anything.

Here are the supplements Dr V approves:


Dasuquin is created to help support normal joint function and stimulate cartilage regeneration. In turn, this will help reduce inflammation and pain for your dog.

Active ingredients:

  • Avocado/soybean unsaponifiables: Helps prevent cartilage breakdown
  • Boswellia Serrata Extract: Provides additional joint support
  • Methylsulfonylmethane: Helps support joint health
  • Decaffeinated Green Tea Extract: Helps reduce inflammation

Dasuquin can be found through and and can be purchased without a prescription.

Dasuquin Advanced (RX)

Dasuquin Advanced is the prescription strength version of Dasuquin. You may be able to get this through, but will need a script from your vet. I didn’t see an option online; however, your vet will be able to get it for you.

Active Ingredients:

  • Avocado/soybean unsaponifiables: Helps prevent cartilage breakdown
  • Boswellia Serrata Extract: Provides additional joint support
  • Methylsulfonylmethane: Helps support joint health
  • Turmeric: Provides additional joint suport
  • Decaffeinated Green Tea Extract: Helps reduce inflammation
  • Alpha-Lipoic Acid: Provides anti-oxidant support
  • Manganese: Provide support of the cartilage matrix production
  • Omega 3 Fatty Acids: Supports overall joint health

Parent Company, Nutramax not only manufactures Dasuquin, but they also developed Cosequin. The largest difference is that Cosequin does not include Avocado/Soybean Unsaponifiables.

Active Ingredients:

  • Methylsulfonylmethane: Helps support joint health
  • FCHG49® Glucosamine Hydrochloride: Helps support cartilage and connective tissue
  • TRH122® Sodium Chondroitin Sulfate: Helps support cartilage and connective tissue

Cosequin can be found through and as well. There are different options available based on your dog’s needs. I am looking at the ones specific to senior dogs and that include MSM and Boswellia.


I think this is a great blog to share especially considering Beckham is getting older (aren’t we all?!) and needs some supplements for his aching bones.

The cool thing about these supplements is they can be used long term and can be found online at reputable websites. They are fairly inexpensive, but they will be beneficial to our dogs so they can live a more healthy/quality life.

I challenge you to check them out! Check out Cosequin and Dasuquin and let me know which one you prefer!

Sources Used:

Pet Insurance Review – Odie Pet Insurance

I apologize this blog has taken so long to write! I had surgery in May, but then had complications, so it has been a bumpy road getting back to writing this pet insurance review.

A couple weeks ago, I wrote about pet insurance and if it was worth the cost. Today, I am going to provide a pet insurance review – Odie Pet Insurance… who is really worth looking into.

Odie Pet Insurance

Price: As low as $6.00 for cats; $9.00 for dogs



Odie is a newer pet insurance company that was created for the owner’s two dogs, Luke and Summer. Struggling to understand all the options and plan benefits plus the premium costs (which were unpredictable!), Luke and Summer’s parents decided they were going to make buying pet insurance much easier.

Their belief is everyone has access to affordable veterinarian care, and pet owners shouldn’t have to choose between their pets and their bank account. The company also believes that preventative care and education will ultimately help keep pets healthy and finances intact.

Pet Insurance Review – Odie Plan Options  

The Illness and Injury Plan

This plan covers a number of options if your dog or cat comes down with an illness or injury. Plans average around $25 a month for cats and $45 a month for dogs (based on a 3-year old mixed breed pet).

Plan Details: The Illness and Injury plan gives you deductible options of a $50 – $1,000 (in $50 increments) as well as reimbursement options of 70%, 80%, or 90%. Annual payout options are as follows: $5,000, $10,000, or $40,000.

Whats covered:

Pet Insurance Review - Odie Pet Insurance

What’s NOT Covered:

  • Pre-Existing Conditions
  • Training/Obedience Classes
  • Breeding, Pregnancy, or Birth Expenses
  • Prescription Food
  • Boarding
  • Cosmetic or Elective Procedures
  • Biohazard Fees
  • Preventative Care

Optional Add-Ons:

You have the ability to add on a couple options for an additional fee These options are:

  • Office Visits and Exam Fees: Fees in addition to the diagnostic tests or treatments
  • Take Home Prescription Medications: Odie covers up to 950 different prescriptions
  • Rehabilitation, Acupuncture, and Chiropractic Care: This option covers ongoing physical therapy to help mobility.
The Accident Only Plan

This plan will cover the cost of an emergency based on if your pet has a mishap/accident only up to $10,000 each year. Cost for this plan start at $6.00 for cats and $9.00 for dogs.

Plan Details: Accident only pays up to $10,000 each year. Your annual deductible (out-of-pocket) is $250 and Odie will reimburse you up to 90% of the veterinarian bills.

What’s Covered:

  • Injuries: Broken bones, sprains, damage to eyes, traumatic dental fractures
  • Wounds: lacerations, bite wounds, snake bites, and bee stings
  • Veterinarian Treatment: X-Rays, ultrasounds, lab tests, emergency care, hospitalization, CTs, MRIs, and surgery.

What’s NOT Covered:

  • Illnesses, diseases, and specific conditions: Breed-specific health issues, congenital diseases, chronic conditions, dental illness.
  • Specific Injuries: Preexisting injuries, cruciate ligament events, intentional acts or behavioral condition caused injuries.
  • Preventative Care: Routine / wellness visits, spay/neuter, vaccines, micro chipping, or teeth cleaning.

The Wellness Add-On:

Plan Details: This option can be added onto the Illness and Injury or the Accident Only plan for an additional premium. It is not an insurance plan, but an option that can help with the preventative care costs such as micro chipping, vaccinations, and flea/tick medications. There are no waiting periods, no annual deductible or co-insurance, and it covers pet’s with preexisting conditions.

Add-On Plan Options:

Additional Information


According to Odie, their offerings are superior to those of other pet insurance companies. In reviewing the options, it looks like Odie may have an upper hand on the overall cost; however, it will be based on the plan and options chosen as well as the age, breed, and overall health of your cat or dog.

Take a look at the comparison chart on Odie’s website:

Pet Insurance Review

Waiting Periods and Exclusions

When looking at pet insurance options, it is important to also consider waiting periods and exclusions. Odie has the following per their sample policy:

Waiting Periods

  • 14 days following the Policy Effective Date for any Illnesses and any related conditions.
  • 3 days following the Policy Effective Date for any Injuries and any related conditions.
  • 6 months following the Policy Effective Date for any Cruciate Ligament Events and any related conditions.


  • Pre-Existing Conditions:
    • Chronic Conditions.
    • Bilateral Conditions, if your Pet had at any time any Pre-Existing Conditions
    • Intervertebral disc Conditions, if your Pet had at any time any Pre-Existing Conditions involving the intervertebral discs (due to either degeneration or trauma).
  • Preventative Care:
    • Wellness exams; parasite control, etc.
    • Elective and cosmetic procedures,
    • Spaying or neutering
    • Claims for Pets found to be healthy and presenting with no clinical symptoms
More Exclusions?
  • Other Exclusions (Costs, Fees, or Expenses) related to:
    • Treatments, therapies, and services described under the Supplemental Benefits coverage, if this coverage is not purchased at enrollment;
    • Any prescription or over-the-counter medications that are not included in their covered medication list;
    • Administrative charges for the processing of insurance claims and/or sending medical records;
    • Injuries due to any organized dog fighting, that involves you or a member of your household;
    • Breeding and pregnancy;
    • Boarding and transport expenses, including ambulance transportation;
    • Complications of or diagnostic tests, treatments, therapies, and/ or medications related to Conditions not covered.
    • Anal gland expression;
    • Typical bedding, housing, crates, cages, ramps, feeding accessories, etc
    • Biohazardous waste fees
    • Any Condition resulting from  training for or participating in racing, including track or sled racing;
    • Alternative and Holistic Treatments;
    • Experimental therapies and medications
    • Conditions arising from a repetitive and specific activity that leads to decontamination (e.g., the induction of vomiting), medical, or surgical treatment of your Pet.
    • Training and treatment of Behavioral Conditions
    • Cremation and burial;


Ok, I know that was a TON of information on Odie’s pet insurance options…especially when it pertains to the waiting period and exclusions, but I think it is important to give you the full picture of what to consider when purchasing a product.

Overall, I think Odie has a good policy. The company is fairly new to the insurance world, so there are not a ton of reviews out there; however, for the price and types of coverage, Odie has a decent offering.

There is only one thing left for you to do and that is…get a quote to see if Odie is right for you and your family!

5 Best Tools to Prevent Dog Bites in Your Household

Last week, I wrote an article on how to prevent dog bites in the home and outside. I discussed how important it is to be able to ensure the safety of those around us (including our dogs) and to remember that dogs are still animals…not human.

Being vigilant and understanding our dog’s body language is extremely important; however, sometimes we may need some tangible tools to help keep everyone safe.

Today, I want to offer some suggestions to help prevent dog bites. Here are 5 of the best tools that can help prevent an incident in your home or when you are out with your dog.

Quick Hits:

If you don’t have time to go through the entire review, I have added the links to the pages where you can find the products.

When you buy something from this website, I may receive an affiliate commission. These are my opinions and are not representative of the companies that create these products. My reviews are based on my personal own experience and research. I never recommend poor quality products, or create false reviews to make sales. It is my intention to explain products so you can make an informed decisions on which ones suit your needs best.



Collars, Harnesses, Gentle Leaders


Gates to Prevent Dog Bites

Let’s start with some ideas for the home. Many bites occur when someone knocks on the door. You open the door and your dog is trying to protect his/her home. Other times, dogs bite when children become too much for them. How do you handle the situation?

What are Gates For?

Dog gates can help keep your dog in an enclosed area, where they are unable to access the stimuli (aka: kids or delivery person). If you see your dog is getting overstimulated or if you want to keep them from rushing the door, you can sequester them in a separate room to help them calm down.

Gates come in many shapes and sizes. Your needs are going to be based on how wide the door frame is where you want to install the gate (or how wide the stairs are if you are looking to remove access at that location), how big your dog is, how crafty they can be, and the type of gate you are looking for; ie: easily removed or semi-permanent.

Here are a few ideas for you to consider:Gates to prevent dog bites


This gate will fit in a doorway or stairway between 28 – 48 inches wide. It is extra tall at 36 inches, so most dogs will not be able to jump over the top. (This may be different for the extra tall dogs like Great Danes or Irish Wolfhounds…)

The gate itself is auto-closing, so you don’t need to worry if you forgot to close it behind you. It will fit beautifully in most doorways or stairways without being an eyesore.


According to Amazon ratings, it received a 4.6 out of 5 based off of 23, 050 global ratings.

Description: This gate will definitely be beneficial for those who have large breed dogs and/or wide doorways where standard gates cannot be used. It features a self-closing door that shuts if opened less than 90 degrees. It also includes a double lock feature to help keep the gate open or closed.

The gate can be separated out to where you can use two or all three panels, depending on the size of your doorway/space. According to reviews, it is easy to install; however, the manufacturer does provide detailed installation instructions and there are installation videos as well.


Chewy reviews show it ranks 4.7 out of 5 out of 54 customer reviews. That doesn’t seem like a lot of reviews; however, I would encourage to submit a review based on your purchase!

Description: This is a freestanding gate with side panels to help keep your dog safe while keeping them out of trouble. The gate can easily be stepped over and is very sturdy. It has rubber feet on the bottom to protect your floors and is easily moved from location to location. If needed, the gate is easily collapsible for easy storage.

The gate is recommended only for cats and for dogs that are up to 17.5lbs. It is not recommended to use as a baby gate.


Amazon ratings show it ranks 4.5 out of 5 based on 5,900 customer reviews.

Dog Crates

If gates don’t work for your home or your dog, you always have the option of utilizing dog crates. Most dogs do ok with crate training, but you need to make sure the crate is a good and safe place to go to.

I will not go over training tips here for crates, but if you are interested in types of crates, here are a few ideas to get started. Remember, crates should be just large enough for your dog to stand up, turn around, and lie down.

Description: MidWest Homes is a well-known name when it comes to popular dog crates. They offer easy to assemble metal crates that are built with quality and durable construction. The newer crates feature a slide-bolt door latch to help keep your dog more safe and secure.

Each crate includes a divider panel, leak-proof pan, protective rubber feet, and a handle for carrying. The divider will allow you to purchase a larger crate for your growing puppy (and only 1 crate for life!)

You will be able to ensure the puppy is safe in a smaller area of the crate until they are large enough to fit in the whole crate. The rubber feet will ensure your floors aren’t scuffed or scratched, and you will easily be able to move the crate by handle when needed. (not while your dog is in the crate, please!)


Amazon Ranks it at a 4.7 out of 5 based on 157,429 customer ratings and it is #1 in basic dog crates! It is easily affordable, easy to assemble, and can be used throughout your dog’s growing stages. (no need to purchase a bigger crate!)

  • EliteField 3-Door Soft Folding Dog Crate
    • Material: Alloy Steel and durable 600D fabric and hex mesh fabric
    • Color: choices include: black, camo, tan, purple, blue, and more!
    • Dimensions: multiple to choose from based on the size of your dog (lengths go from 20 inches to 42 inches)
    • Location: Indoors only
    • Price: $55 – $119 depending on size and if you get single or double door

Description: This crate is made with steel tubes with a fabric cover to ensure durability and breathability. There are three mesh doors so you are able let the sunshine and air in (or be able to access your dog!), and two accessory pockets for storage. The fabric is removable and washable!

The crate also includes a carrying bag and fleece bed, and the handle has a handle strap for easy carrying. What is really nice about this crate, is it includes a 2-year warranty from Elitefield.


Amazon rates it 4.5 out of 5 based on 13,017 customer reviews and #9 in basic dog crates…but #1 in soft dog crates. It is definitely one to check out!

  • Diggs Revol Dog Crate (Collapsible Dog Crate, Portable Dog Crate)
    • Material: Aluminum, Alloy Steel, Plastic
    • Color: Ash, Charcoal, Gray, Pine
    • Dimensions:
      • Small: 28″L x 20″W x 21″H,
      • Medium: 32″L x 20″W x 22″H;
      • Intermediate: 41″L x 28″W x 31″H
      • Large: 45″L x 31″W x 33″H
    • Location:Travel Friendly
    • Price:
      • Small: $374.99
      • Medium: $474.99
      • Intermediate: $595.00
      • Large: $675.00

Description: This crate may be a bit more expensive than most; however, it is built with durable; high-grade aluminum, steel mesh wire, and reinforced plastic. It goes above and beyond typical dog crate standards and is built to baby industry standards, so no more pinched fingers or paws!

The crate is travel friendly, so it is easy to collapse and reassemble. It is equipped with a handle and wheels for easy transport.


It may be a bit more expensive, but Amazon gives it a 4.6 out of 5 based on 820 customer ratings. This is definitely one worth checking out if you want to pamper your pooch with quality sleeping space.

Dog Collar, Harness, and Gentle Leaders

So, I am a bit biased towards certain products because I used them when I was teaching obedience classes and volunteer classes at a local shelter. These items helped keep control of the dog, keep them from slipping out of the collar/leash combo, or at least give the human a bit more confidence in handling an active dog.

  • PetSafe Nylon Martingale Dog Collar
    • Material: Nylon
    • Color: You can choose from many colors and patterns
    • Dimensions:
      • Petite: 5 – 8 inch neck, 3/8 inch wide
      • Small: 8 – 12 inch neck, 3/4 inch wide,
      • Medium: 10 – 16 inch neck, 3/4 inch or 1 inch wide;
      • Large: 14 – 20 inch neck, 1 inch wide
    • Price:
      • Petite: $6.49
      • Small: $6.99
      • Medium: $5.84 – $7.99
      • Large: $6.99 – $8.49

Description: I really love the Martingale collar. Every dog that joins our family gets one of these collars! The Martingale collar is a great option for those dogs who easily slip out of their collars or figures out how to unclasp the buckle on normal collars.

It is known as a limited slip collar where if the dog pulls, the collar tightens, but when the dog relaxes, the collar loosens. This gives you more control when out on a walk. You don’t need to worry your dog will slip out of the collar and run towards another dog or something they are really interested in.

This is the only collar I will use because I find it much safer than regular collars and not as harsh as choke or prong collars.


Chewy gives this 4 out of 5 stars per 858 customer reviews.

  • PetSafe Easy Walk Dog Harness
    • Material: Nylon
    • Color: You can choose from many colors and patterns
    • Dimensions:
      • Petite: 12 – 16 inch girth or 13 – 18 inch girth
      • Small: 15 – 21 inch girth or 19 – 26 inch girth
      • Medium: 21 – 32 inch girth
      • Medium/Large: 24.5 – 34 inch girth
      • Large: 27 – 40 inch girth
      • Extra Large: 32 – 50 inch girth
    • Price: (On Sale from $28.99)
      • Petite: $22.95
      • Small: $22.95
      • Medium: $22.95
      • Medium/Large: $22.95
      • Large: $22.95
      • Extra Large: $22.95

Description: This is a great harness for dogs who really like to pull when on a walk. The harness clips on at the dog’s chest to where you have control of the dog from the shoulders. This keeps your dog from choking/gagging like when you only clip the leash to the collar.

When I was teaching obedience classes, I would always recommend this type of harness instead of a regular harness that clips to the back. If your dog tries to pull, you are able to put a little pressure at the shoulders and easily regain control.


Chewy gives it 4 out of 5 stars based on 2735 customer reviews

  • PetSafe Gentle Leader Padded No Pull Dog Headcollar
    • Material: Nylon
    • Color: You can choose from many colors and patterns
    • Dimensions:
      • Petite: 6 – 8.5 inch neck
      • Small: 7 – 15 inch neck
      • Medium: 9 – 19 inch neck
      • Large: 11 – 24 inch neck
      • Extra Large: 12 – 28 inch neck
    • Price: (On Sale from $28.99)
      • Petite: $19.95
      • Small: $19.95
      • Medium: $19.95
      • Medium/Large: $19.95
      • Large: $19.95
      • Extra Large: $19.95

Description: This no-pull head collar is a great option for those dogs who really love to pull or who are reactive when on a walk. The gentle leader goes around the nose, which reduces your dog’s instinct to pull. It also allows you to guide your dog where to go without your dog putting up much resistance.

At first, dogs are not really pleased with having something across their nose; however, they will get used to it. It does not prohibit them from regular activities such as eating, drinking, or panting, or playing. Once they get used to feeling the strap over the nose and seeing it in their peripheral vision, your dog will be a much more mannered pup on your walk!


Chewy rates it 4 out of 5 stars based on 1559 customer reviews

Muzzles to Prevent Dog Bites

Muzzles can be a controversial item because of how they look on a dog. In some cases, the dog looks more aggressive than they are or some people think it can be cruel equipment used to subdue a dog.

I can understand the concerns when it comes to muzzles; however, to keep your dog, family, and friends safe, a muzzle may be necessary. This is extremely important if your dog has a history of biting or lashing out in stressful situations.

Best Type of Muzzle

With that said, there are different types of muzzles; however, I would only recommend a muzzle where your dog is still able to drink water and pant. Remember, your dog will need to be trained to accept the muzzle, and it may take a bit to get them comfortable.

Here are a few options:

  • Baskerville Ultra Dog Muzzle
    • Material: Thermal Plastic Rubber
    • Color: Black or Tan
    • Dimensions: Sizes 1 – 6
    • Price: $15.25 – $30.32 depending on size and color

Description: This muzzle is light-weight, but made with durable material. It is ergonomically designed and has two additional secure attachments to ensure the muzzle stays in place. According to the manufacturer, you can also heat the muzzle in hot water to mold it for a custom fit.

Baskerville muzzles allow for your dog to drink, pant, and take treats. The open design helps them feel more comfortable while wearing it.


Chewy gives it 4 out of 5 stars based on 659 customer reviews.

The reviews have stated the sizing chart may be incorrect, but if you get the wrong size through, you can always return and replace it.

Description: This muzzle is specifically designed for our pittie friends and their cute snouts! It will not rust because it is stainless steel, and there are four adjusting straps to ensure a snug, yet comfortable fit.

I like the look of this muzzle because it is so open. It is lightweight enough to where your dog should be able to move about normally. It will allow your dog to breathe easy, pant, drink water, and even lick his/her nose.


Amazon rates it at 4.1 out of 5 stars based on 2,474 customer reviews.

Dog Training to Prevent Dog Bites

Lastly, let’s talk training to help prevent dog bites in the home and outside. This is the most important step to keeping you, your family, others, and your dog safe.

Training should begin as soon as you bring your pup home (either a puppy or an adult). This will help build a bond between you and your dog while also showing them they can rely on you in scary or stressful situations.

There are so many training opportunities for you and your dog; however, you must find a reputable trainer, behaviorist, or program that is willing to work with you. If you are unsure of the type of training, I recommend what is called “Positive Reinforcement” training that does not use harsh punishments for wrong choices.

How to Find the Best Trainer or Program

Finding a good trainer is going to be based on your location. I am sure there are a number of trainers who do virtual visits; however, it is always better to work with someone in person. This allows for the trainer to guide you and your dog when you make mistakes (like we all do at times!)

If you are wondering about trainers in your area, I recommend checking out The Association of Professional Dog Trainers and The Certification Council for Professional Dog Trainers on how to choose the right trainer for you as well as certified trainers in your neighborhood. You can also reach out to a local pet shelter for advice as well.


Wow! That was a lot to unpack!

My hope is that this article and product review help you find something that will help reduce the possibility of a dog bite in your family. It’s not a fun topic to write about; however, your safety is of utmost importance!


Gates and crates will definitely come in handy in your home. These products can help keep your dog from a potentially stressful situation such as the dreaded doorbell ring or a little kid’s birthday party in the living room!

Collars, Easy Walk Harnesses, and Gentle Leaders will be helpful when you take your dog on walks or just even out of the house for a while. You will be able to maintain control and keep you and others safe from a possible dog bite.

Muzzles are particularly useful in cases where your dog may have a bite history or acts out in certain situations (like getting checked out by the vet). Don’t forget that you need to train your dog to accept the muzzle, so it may take a little time to get them used to it.

Let me know which product you have tried and how it worked for you! I am curious to see if you found something else that worked better.

Prevent Dog Bites in the Home (& Outside)

The other day, I read an article regarding dog bite liability claims and how the amount paid out for insurance claims has increased drastically over the past few years…even if the actual number of claims didn’t go up as much. To me, that is absolutely absurd! Not only does it mean that insurance rates go up, but dogs get a bad reputation. If we are trying to keep dogs in their homes, how do turn this around?

So, I had an idea! Let’s talk about how to prevent dog bites in the home and outside!


Prevent Dog Bites in the HomeStatistics on Dog Bites in the Home

Before we get into how to prevent dog bites, let’s talk about statistics.

Dogs and Households

According to the Insurance Information Institute, approximately 85 million dogs reside in about 69 million households. Approximately 4.5 million people are bitten by dogs each year, and unfortunately, many of those bitten are children. Of these 4.5 million people bitten, 800,000 need medical attention (CDC).

  • 1 in 5 people in the U.S. who are bitten need medical attention
  • Children are more likely to become badly injured from a dog bite.

Insurance Claims and Payouts

In 2022, State Farm states they paid out $211 million in dog related injury cases. The number of claims only increased by 26 from 2021; however, the amount paid increased by approximately $49 million.

The Insurance information Institute shows that insurers paid out $881 million in 2021.

Overall, the number of claims has fallen over time; however, the amount paid out has increased exponentially (around 28%). An average dog bite/injury liability claim will pay almost $65,000.

Survey Says!

State Farm and the National Dog Bite Prevention Coalition also conducted an “Ask Suzy” survey in March 2023 that found the following: (over 1330 people responded to the survey)

    • 23% of participants said they have been injured from being scratched by a dog.
    • 19% of participants said they have been injured by a dog bite.
    • 17% of participants responded “YES” to the question of if their dog has either bitten them or another dog.
    • 11% of participants filed an insurance claim due to a dog-related injury.
    • 6% of participants have either sued or been sued because of a dog-related injury claim.

What States Are Seeing An Increase in Dog Bite Insurance ClaimsPrevent Dog Bites

There are 10 states that have seen an increase in dog bite insurance claims. According to State Farm’s story “When Good Dogs Have Bad Days”, California leads the pack when it comes to the number of claims and the amount paid out.

California is closely followed by Illinois, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Texas, New York, Minnesota, Indiana, and Georgia.

Not in Those States?

Even if you don’t reside in one of these states, don’t let your guard down. You may still have to deal with a dog bite situation or know someone who will go through something similar.

How to Prevent Dog Bites in the Home (& Outside)

Even though these pay out amounts are staggering, it doesn’t mean all hope is lost! There are multiple ways you can help prevent dog bites in the home or outside of the home.

For Dog Owners:

  1. Get to know your dog: This is especially important when you first adopt or purchase from a breeder. Take the time to talk to the shelter or breeder to find out if there are any known triggers or aggressive tendencies.
  2. Do not leave your dog alone with children: Remember, dogs are still animals and have certain instincts. Even if your dog is the best dog in the world and wouldn’t hurt a fly…still take precaution as instinct overrides personality. I remember hearing stories of the family dog attacking a baby when mom took a quick shower. There was no indication that the dog would attack; however, it did. It’s important to avoid that possibility.
  3. Make sure your dog is healthy: Sometimes dogs will bite because they don’t feel good or they are in pain. If you notice a change in their behavior, contact your veterinarian to see if they are sick or injured.
  4. Pay attention to your dog when out and about or when someone approaches the door: It is really important to keep an eye on your dog when on a walk or if you are around people they may not know. A lot of bites have happened when the delivery person comes to the door. Your dog may be super excited (and jump/scratch) or may be trying to protect the home. When out in a different environment, they may become stressed due to being in a new place; around new people or animals etc… Watch them closely and remove them from the environment if you see they are becoming more excitable.
  5. Learn dog body language: There are many behaviorists and training that will help you understand dog body language. A lot of signals may be missed because there is a misunderstanding of what the dog is trying to convey. For example, a dog doesn’t only wag his/her tail when happy. There are other factors to pay attention to when understanding what the tail wag means (where is the tail in relation to the body, is the body tense, how the dog is standing, etc.) This will also help if you are in a situation with an unknown dog.
  6. Take your dog through obedience training: Obedience training can be vital when preventing dog bites. It helps train your dog to listen to you and pay attention to your cues in certain situations. The more control you have over the situation, the more confident your dog will feel in following your direction.
  7. Socialize your dog: This is easier for puppies up to 6 months old as this is the optimal time period where they should be socialized with everything and everybody. For dogs older than 6 months old, it may take more guidance from you and possibly help from a behaviorist. Also remember that some dogs aren’t able to socialize properly, so it may not be good to force that issue. If there are any questions or concerns, talk to a behaviorist.
  8. Exercise your dog: Most breeds need about an hour of exercise a day. To avoid bad behavior or the possibility of dog bites, it is important to get them out on a walk, throw the ball…even, as my son does with Chai, run up and down the stairs playing chase.
  9. Walk your dog on a leash: Besides many states/communities having leash laws, so many people think their dog will be ok off-leash. We need to remember that even the best of dogs can bite, so keeping them on-leash helps reduce putting them in a bad situation.
  10. If you are worried about possible dog bites, there are tools on the market: If you know your dog can be aggressive or get stressed in certain situations, there are tools that you can utilize to minimize damages. One of the best tools is a basket muzzle. This is a muzzle that will keep your dog from biting anyone, but they will still be able to drink and breathe comfortably. Click HERE for options:

Encounters with dogs outside the home

  1. Always ask if you can pet somebody’s dog: It is so difficult to keep your hands to yourself when you encounter a floofy ball of cuteness. Unfortunately, if you reach out to the wrong fur baby, you may get bitten. Be sure you (and your children) always ask for permission to pet a dog.
  2. Don’t run towards a dog: If you run towards a dog, the dog may take that action as aggression and may bite you in defense.
  3. Don’t bark or growl at a dog: This can be considered teasing the dog and can increase their excitability. They may see it as play…or they may see it as a sign of aggression. It’s best to keep things neutral with dogs you don’t know.
  4. Don’t approach barking, growling, or scared dogs: This is extremely important for those who are not trained to handle these types of issues. If you come across a stray that is barking, growling, or is scared, keep your distance and call animal care and control.
  5. Teach your children to respect the dog’s space: Kids are notorious for wanting to interact with cute, fluffy animals. Teach them how to approach a dog; ask for permission to pet the dog, and to steer clear of sketchy situations.
  6. Remember Service Dogs are not to be disturbed: When you are out and about and come across a service dog, please be respectful of the dog and his/her handler. The dog is working and cannot be disturbed. If you approach and distract the dog from his/her job, they may miss important triggers for their handler’s illness or disability. This can result in the handler becoming injured or hospitalized.
  7. Remember dogs are animals…not human. We tend to anthropomorphize our pets, but what we forget is that they are not fully domesticated. Our dogs still have certain instincts and may act on them even when you don’t understand why. This means, even though you may have good interactions with a neighborhood dog, it may not happen in the future. Be aware of your environment, the dog’s body language, and remember they are still very much an animal.

It’s Not Better to Ask Forgiveness

I understand there are many people who have well-trained dogs and understand their dogs behavior inside and out. Unfortunately, this is not the case for the majority of us, so being precautious is always beneficial when it comes to avoiding dog bites.

It’s not like the saying “It’s better to ask for forgiveness than permission”. If you don’t take the precautions, forgiveness may never come and your insurance policy (and maybe you) pay a lot of money for a dog bite claim.

Talk To Your Property Insurance Agent For Coverage Information And How to Prevent Dog Bites in the Home

So much information on how to avoid dog bite claims, but what do you consider when it comes to your insurance policy?

Many insurance companies don’t exclude certain dog breeds; however, it is important to talk with your agent or broker to ask if your insurance company does exclude your dog’s breed. If your dog’s breed is excluded for liability coverage, you will be responsible for the full amount of damages if your dog bites someone.

Liability Options

When you determine if your dog is covered, talk to your agent or broker regarding liability limits. Remember, the average dog bite/injury claim has jumped to an average of $65, 000, so you will want to be sure you have enough coverage. I recommend at least $500,000 in liability coverage to be on the safe side.

Umbrella Coverage

Also discuss the possibility of a personal liability insurance policy (PLUP). This will cover over and above the homeowner’s liability limit up to the policy limits. (the average is $1M limit) These policies are fairly inexpensive; however there are certain conditions you have to meet to qualify. For example, my PLUP requires that I carry higher auto policy limits.

Overall, the insurance premiums will be a little higher; however, you know that in the event of a covered dog bite claim, the insurance company will have your back.

When in Doubt…

When in doubt, talk to your agent or broker. They will be able to give you the rundown of specific state laws, insurance regulations and what you need to do in the event of dog bite liability claim (being the insured or the claimant).



I understand there is a lot to unpack in this article; but I want to make sure you, your family, and your fur baby are safe…(and that you don’t end up in one of these types of claims). The amount of insurance claims paid out in 2022 was crazy! Let’s see if we can’t do something on our part to reduce the payouts in 2023 and in the future.

Let’s Work Together!

There are so many things we can do as responsible dog owners and dog lovers to keep our dogs out of these situations. Let’s work together to educate our community and help each other out, so our dogs can live long, happy lives!

Have you been involved in dog bite claim? What was your experience? Are there any tools you use to reduce the potential of a dog bite (like a basket muzzle?)


Sources Used:

Is Pet Insurance Worth the Cost?

I have seen this question come up quite a bit in the last year…especially for those who are adopting new pets. The cost to care for pets has gone up exponentially, and sometimes a visit to the vet can cost hundreds or thousands of dollars (We’ve all been there, right?). So, the question is, in order to save money down the road, is pet insurance worth the cost?

We do need to remember there are many facets to pet insurance, so take the time to learn and choose wisely. Each policy and every pet insurance company is different. So…let’s start with the basics.

Pet Insurance Worth the Cost?What Is Pet Insurance?

Pet insurance is very similar to medical insurance. You pay a premium each month (or year), and depending on the type of coverage you have, the insurance will cover certain medical conditions (minus a deductible or copay). There will also be exclusions on certain policies depending on the policy type or if your pet has a preexisting condition.

Depending on the insurance company, the pet owner will pay up front for the veterinary services and then submit the claim to the insurance company for reimbursement. There are only a handful of companies that will pay the veterinarian up front, so it is important to choose a plan that works for you and your budget.

What types of pet insurance policies are available? There are 3 categories you can choose from:

Accident Only: This plan only covers veterinarian bills due to accidents such as broken bones, or if your pet swallows a foreign object.

Accident and Illness (most common plan): This plan includes bills due to accidents, but it will also include if your pet gets sick. Illnesses can include: diabetes, cancer, arthritis, and allergies. This plan can also cover chronic illnesses or congenital conditions.

Routine Wellness or Preventative Care: Some insurance carriers offer this plan as an add-on (sometimes as a separate plan). This type of plan will cover your typical well visits, vaccinations, spay/neuter, and flea treatments.

What Pet Insurance Doesn’t Cover

When considering pet insurance, there are a few standard conditions / incidents that are not covered by the insurance companies. Here are a few that will help you decide if pet insurance is for you:

  • Elective procedures such as ear cropping or tail docking
  • Breeding and/or pregnancy
  • DNA testing
  • Accidents due to cruelty, racing, fighting, or neglect
  • Grooming
  • Food supplements
  • Experimental treatments
  • Preventative procedures
  • Non-veterinary expenses (such as waste disposal)
  • Some companies don’t provide coverage for preexisting conditions (some have a waiting period)

Who is Pet Insurance For?

Not everyone should jump to purchasing pet insurance for their pets. There are certain things to consider when deciding on whether to make the purchase.

  1. What type of pet do you have? Currently, most pet insurance companies cover dogs and cats; however, there are some that will cover birds, reptiles, etc… It is important to check with the company to see if your pet qualifies.
  2. Is your pet relatively young and healthy? The younger and healthier your pet is, the better price you will pay for insurance. This doesn’t mean your older, healthy pet doesn’t qualify; however, you will pay more in premium.
  3. Does your pet have a preexisting condition? If your pet has a preexisting condition, such as diabetes or hip dysplasia, these conditions may be excluded. Some companies may choose to put a waiting period in place for preexisting conditions instead of excluding coverage. For example, if you purchase a policy on January 1st, and the policy has a 14-day waiting period for preexisting conditions, coverage won’t be available for your pet’s preexisting condition until January 15th.
  4. What is your budget for pet costs? This needs to be considered on a few different levels. First, how much can you afford on a monthly basis for insurance premiums? Second, how much can you afford for insurance premiums and deductible/copay? Third, how much can you afford for emergencies.
  5. What type of policy are you looking for? For pets who generally only need well visits and vaccinations or spay/neuter, pet insurance may not be necessary. The cost of the insurance may be more expensive than paying out-of-pocket. On the contrary, if you have a pet known to need additional care throughout life (like Frenchies), an accident and illness plan may be less expensive than paying out-of-pocket per visit. If you know you can cover well-being visits, but may not be able to pay for more expensive bills such as ACL tears, an accidental policy may be right for you.

I know it is a lot to take in, but the major takeaway is: If you have a relatively healthy pet, and you can pay monthly premiums, but not expensive vet bills, pet insurance may be for you. Pet insurance will help reduce the stress of high emergency vet bills, surgeries, and even certain ongoing treatment for your pet. This can give you the peace of mind knowing you do not have to ‘break the bank” when getting care for your fur baby.

Pet Insurance Lingo

Before you decide which company to purchase pet insurance, let’s talk about what some basic terminology means:

Policy: This is the chosen plan for your pet. It will go over coverages, deductibles, copay, exclusions, and premiums.

Premiums: This is the amount you pay to keep the policy in force on a monthly basis. The premium will be based off of the following:

  • Age
  • Gender
  • Breed
  • Preexisting conditions
  • Where you live
  • Coverage types (accidental or accidental/illness, etc)
  • Deductible / CoInsurance

Coverage: This is what the company will actually pay for or reimburse. Depending on the type of policy, coverage will be for labs, treatments, surgeries, medications, and certain vet fees.

Exclusions: This is a part of the policy that will explain what will not be covered under the policy. In most accident or accident/illness policies, well-visit fees and vaccinations are excluded under the policy. Some policies may exclude certain preexisting or hereditary conditions. It is important to read the fine print to understand what all would be excluded under the policy.

Waiting Period: A waiting period is an exclusion period where certain conditions will not be covered. For example, some companies may waiting periods from two to thirty days for certain accidents or illnesses. Other companies may have longer waiting periods for pets prone to hereditary or common conditions (like hip dysplasia). If your pet is being treated for these temporary exclusions within the waiting period, coverage will not apply. You will be out-of-pocket for that visit.

Benefits: This is the amount that the insurance company will pay.up to for a certain incident or time period. The best insurance companies will have the larger benefit amounts.

Deductible: This is your out-of-pocket expense before a claim will be paid. For example, if the visit costs $1,000, and you have a $250 deductible. The insurance company will pay the $750 after you pay $250. Depending on the plan, the deductible may be per incident or per year. In some incidents, the company may only require a single deductible if the pet is going through ongoing treatment (such as cancer).When considering deductibles, it is important to understand, the higher the deductible, the lower the premium…but in many cases that is not doable for most people. Choose a deductible that will easily be paid at any vet visit.

CoPay/CoInsurance: Outside of your deductible, the policy will most likely have a copay. Copay is a percentage of the bill you will be responsible for. For example, if you have a $1,000 bill and a $250 deductible, 10% copay, the company will pay up to 90% of the bill, minus the coinsurance. In this case, the company will pay up to $650. This is another important factor to consider. You will want to make sure the insurance you choose has a lower coinsurance such as 10 – 30%.


Our pets are family and we want to do everything we can to care for them. Unfortunately, sometimes the cost to care for them is more than we can bear; however, pet insurance can help alleviate that burden.

If you are thinking about purchasing pet insurance, there are a few things to consider before you make a decision. Not only do you need to consider your budget, but you need to research the insurance companies and what they cover….and how it pertains to your pet’s needs.

It seems like the number of pet insurance companies in the U.S. has increased exponentially…so it is even more critical to make sure you get the best policy for your pet and for your budget. I will be doing an insurance comparison in the coming week or so, but I at least wanted to get this blog out for those considering purchasing insurance.

Truly, pet insurance can be worth the cost….but it really depends on what your pet needs, how much you pay, and what the policy covers.

If you have pet insurance, is there a specific company you prefer? Tell me who you trust!

Sources Used:

How Are You Coping with Pet Loss?

It has been a year since my family lost the goodest girl, Nuka, and I know I still struggle with coping with loss. Of course, social media doesn’t let you forget either (which can be a blessing and a curse), but this year it brought back a lot of big emotions. This got me to thinking…how are you coping with pet loss?

This will probably be a little shorter of a blog post, because, I am writing it almost as a question to myself as well as to you. Are you still working through your grief? Do you have a support system or people close to you that can help you through this time? How are you remembering your fur baby?

Coping with Pet Loss
Beckham and Nuka April 2022

Does Time Heal All Wounds When Coping with Pet Loss?

The old adage “Time heals all wounds” seems to be out of place when speaking of loss. When you lose a pet, the grief can be so strong that it feels like it overpowers every other emotion.

Over time, grief begins to wane; however, I don’t believe it ever goes away. Certain memories or even small movements can trigger the grief all over again.

The Closet Door

As an example, this past week, my husband shut our bedroom closet door and I immediately thought of how Nuka always slept in our closet…so I had to open the closet door for her, even though she is no longer with us. This memory, as small as it seems, caused a restless night, full of tears.

My husband even will see a movement in the backyard and think Nuka is running and playing. It takes a moment to remember she has been gone for a year.

Scars On Our Heart

All in all, time doesn’t heal our wounds in their entirety; however, it leaves a scar on our hearts. It shows us that we did love with all of our being and the pets that have passed over the rainbow bridge have left a definite impact on our lives.

At first, scars are red, angry, and they hurt! You are more likely to scratch at them and open up the wound, and grief overflows. Over time, the scar gets less angry, painful, and grief doesn’t come as often. When the scar heals, you still have a reminder of the loss, and you may grieve on occasion; however, the pain is not as it once was.


Do You Have A Support System While Coping With Pet Loss?

I know this sounds like a silly question…but think about it. Do you have people who you can talk to while going through the grieving process? Even if it is one person, that can be the difference between coping with your loss and remaining in a dark place.

Who Do I Talk To?

Ok, Kelly, seriously…do you think I would talk to someone I don’t trust? Maybe…but I think it is something to think about. Many of us have family members who will support us through our grieving process, but sometimes that may not be enough.

You have a few options:

1. A Professional Counselor/Therapist: They are trained / qualified to work with you through your grieving process. They will be able to provide ideas on how you can get through this difficult time in your life… Pets have become such an integral part of our lives that the therapist will have a range of tools to help you through.

2. Support Groups: If you are not as interested in talking 1×1, group therapy is always an option. You should be able to research groups in your area or reach out to your local veterinarian or rescue shelter and they can direct you to a group that will work for you.

3. An Online Forum/Social Media Group: I have seen a number of these popping up on Facebook and Instagram, and I am sure there are other platforms that help people who are coping with pet loss. The one thing I would caution is that these are not necessarily moderated by professionals, but are just normal people like us.

I think one of the most important aspects to coping with pet loss is to talk to somebody…to have a support system that will help you and encourage you on your grief journey.

6 Ways to Keep Your Pet’s Spirit Alive

During the grieving process, it also helps to find a way to memorialize your pet. It will keep the good memories alive and help you remember your pet when they were in good health.

Here are a few ideas on how to memorialize your pet:

1. Creative Writing: One of the things I have found to help is writing about my pets…I started this blog because I wanted to write about Roc and Aprilia who passed away, and in turn, I have been able to write articles on grief as well as how to keep pets healthy for a longer life. Even if you don’t want to write a blog, take time to create a story of your pet.

2. Art: I have seen a number of artists who create beautiful portraits and memorials for family pets. If you have an artistic bend, creating art to remember your pet may help memorialize your own loved one.

3. Create a memorial garden: I think this is a beautiful idea to where you can create a specific area in your garden or create a garden to memorialize your pet. You can put a wind chime or a memorial stone in one of your pet’s favorite outdoor areas. If you are in an apartment or condominium, maybe adding a little herb garden in the window may work best.

4. Tattoos: This idea is one that I have done and will do again. If you don’t shy away from needles, a tattoo is a great permanent remembrance for your pet. I had Nuka’s paw print tattooed above my heart. There are so many ideas online, but I would trust a reputable tattoo artist to help you design something specific for you and your pet.

Nuka's Paw Print

5. Plan a Memorial Service: Invite friends and family to a small service to remember your pet. You can include a photo album / slideshow of your pet, and have friends/family share their memories. You can even bury your pet or spread ashes to help with the closure.

6. Volunteer at a Shelter in Their Memory: This idea may not happen right away based on how you deal with grief and how long it takes you to process each stage of grief. When you are ready, take time to research some local shelters to see which one you would prefer to volunteer with. If you are uncomfortable volunteering or don’t have time (or are afraid that you want to take all the pets home!), many rescues accept donations in memory of your pet or a loved one.

Remember: Healing Takes Time When Coping With Pet Loss

The biggest take-away I have when it comes to coping with pet loss is that it takes time. And…the time it takes is different for everyone, so be gracious to yourself.

There are 5 stages of grief we all go through. Take your time with each stage; don’t rush yourself through the process.

Also, don’t let others rush you through the process either. Surround yourself with people who will support you and love you regardless of where you are.


Pets have become an integral part of our families. When one passes over the rainbow bridge, the grief can be just as difficult as it is when we lose a human family member. This means we coping with pet loss is important to our health and well-being.

Processing grief may take time, but as long as you can talk to someone about what you are dealing with and/or you can remember your pet in a positive way, you will get through this hard time.

Let me know if you have a specific way to cope with the loss of a pet. Are there any gift or memorial items you have purchased to remember your pet?

Pet Memorial Gift Ideas for 2023 – Chewy Edition

Last month, I shared a post of 3 pet memorial gifts I found on Amazon. They are beautifully made and are a reasonable cost. I know some people prefer to shop through, so it only made sense to show you a few pet memorial gift ideas for 2023…Chewy Edition!

It is so hard when our pets cross over the Rainbow Bridge. We never want to forget them, but sometimes it is difficult finding something to remember them by (without scrolling through all of the pictures, right?).  Something tangible and real can help keep their spirit alive…something you can see every day to remember all of the good times and the love you experienced during their life…

Take a look at the review for the following three pet memorial gift ideas.

"When you buy something from this website, I may receive an affiliate commission. These are my opinions and are not representative of the companies that create these products. My reviews are based on my personal own experience and research. I never recommend poor quality products, or create false reviews to make sales. It is my intention to explain products so you can make an informed decisions on which ones suit your needs best."

My 3 Favorite Pet Memorial Gifts from Chewy

Bereavement Urn

Kay Berry If Tears Could Build a Stairway Personalized Dog & Cat Urn


Material: Stone

Weight: 18lbs

Dimensions: 9.5 x 5 x 8 in

                                                                                                    Price: $113


This is a beautiful way to remember your beloved pet. I love the saying on the stone. It encompasses everything a pet parent wants to say and do when their pet passes away.

“If tears could build a stairway, and memories were a lane, I’d walk right up to heaven and bring you home again.”

This urn is made of stone and can be customized for your best furry friend. The stone has 3 lines of engraving with 18 characters per line that can eulogize your pet and their life with you. It also includes a plastic container that can hold your pet’s ashes, up to 35lbs, or a personal momento.



There are no reviews for the urn on Chewy; however, I was taken aback by the beauty, wording, and the fact it can be customized. This is a product definitely worth the cost as it is made with strong material and will last for years to come.

The only concern I have is that it is quite heavy (18lbs!), but it makes sense as it is made out of stone.

Click the link to find out more about it and the other options Kay Berry offers: “If Tears Could Build a Stairway”

Pearhead Pet Memory Box


Material: Wood

Weight: 3.05lbs

Dimensions: 4.5 x 10.25 x 8 inches

Price: $34.99


This is a beautiful option for storing your pet’s ashes after they have passed over the rainbow bridge. The box will hold  ashes for a pet up to 100lbs.

You can insert your favorite 4″ x 6″ pet photo in the insert as well as a similar sized paw print. This item also comes equipped with the tools to capture your pet’s paw print. You will receive the pet-safe clay, roller, double sided sticky tape and a ruler.

This memory box is a simple, yet beautiful way to keep your pet’s spirit alive forever.

There are only a few reviews; however, 90% of people who purchased this product, would recommend it to others.

My concern with this item is that it only will fit the ashes of a pet up to 100lbs. Most pets are under 100lbs; however, there are some (like my Beckham) who weigh much more than that.

If you are someone who does not keep your pet’s ashes, here are a few other similar items that may

Pet Memorial Gift Idea Carson Industries “My Heart” Picture Frame Garden Stone


Material: Acrylic and Resin

Weight: 3.25lbs

Dimensions: 9.5 x 9.5 x 0.75 in

Price: $27.99


Each garden stone is hand-crafted and painted and made out of quality acrylic and resin material. The stone has an insert to hold a 4″ x 6″ photo of your furbaby.

The stone also includes a beautiful saying (which rings true for all of our loved pets!)

“You have left my life, but you will never leave my heart.”

This garden stone has a keyhole hanger for those who prefer to hang the stone in their garden or in a favorite spot inside the home. (It may be a bit heavy, so you may need to reinforce the hanger)

There are no reviews for this item yet; however, it looks to be made with quality materials and can be placed in the garden or in the home.

It is such a beautiful stone, and I love that you can add your favorite picture of your pet.


These are only 3 items I found through Chewy. They are all beautiful, simple, and a wonderful keepsake to help keep your pet’s spirit alive after they have passed over the rainbow bridge.

I encourage you to take a look at some of the other keepsake items Chewy has to offer as well.

Click here for more ideas:   Pet Memorial Keepsakes 

Pet Memorial Gift Ideas for 2023 – Amazon Edition

My mom just recently lost 2 of her fur babies 60 days apart due to cancer. It’s not the best way to start out a new year, so I decided to look for mementos or keepsakes to buy for my mom to keep Bella and Meela’s spirits alive. Here are some pet memorial gift ideas for 2023.

(As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.)

My 3 Favorite Pet Memorial Gift Ideas from Amazon

Pet Memorial Gift Ideas
Willow Tree

  1. Willow Tree Angel of Friendship, Sculpted Hand-Painted Figure

Manufacturer: Willow Tree

Artist: Susan Lordi

Price: $31.49

Dimensions: 6.7″L x 3.6″W x 5″H

Material: Resin


I love this sculpture and how it reflects the true love between a human and their dog. This is a great gift to give someone who has lost a pet or who just wants a keepsake to remember their pets.

It is a small resin sculpture that fits on the fireplace mantel, a book shelf, nightstand, or even a desk. The resin figure is cast from Susan Lordi’s original carving and hand painted.

According to 8,678 Amazon reviews, Willow Tree Angel of Friendship received 4.9 out of 5 stars. It is also ranks #22 in Collectibles/Figurines.

Click  to find: The Willow Tree Angel of Friendship

I have two Willow Tree Figures for my sons, and they are absolutely beautiful. This is definitely a great gift idea!

2. Pet Memorial Wind Chime – 18″ Metal Casted Pawprint Wind ChimePet Memorial Gift Ideas for 2023


Manufacturer: The Grandparent Gift Co

Price: $27.99

Dimensions: 12.5 x 5 x 1.5 inches; 0.16 Ounces

Material: Metal


This is a beautiful wind chime that features a paw print at the top of the wind chime and four musical tubes below. The paw print has a sentiment etched on each side.

On one side it reads:

“Life seems quiet without you, you were far more than a pet. You were a family member, a frienda loving soul I’ll never forget”

The other side reads:

” It will take time to heal, for the silence to go away. I still listen for you, and miss you every day.”

The wind chime is durable and can withstand the hardest elements. You can hang it out on your porch, in your yard, even inside the home, or your pet’s favorite spot. A light breeze will begin a soothing melody to help you remember a lost pet.

If you are giving as a gift, the wind chime comes in a gift box that includes “The Pawprints Left By You” poem by Teri Harrison. This is a beautiful poem that can help convey your message of compassion. (because sometimes, it is hard to find the words to say!)

Amazon reviews show it is a 5 out of 5 star gift; however, the ratings by feature show 4.6 – 4.8 out of 5 stars. It is not much of a difference; however, I thought I would point it out.


It is currently ranked 5,912 in pet supplies and 6th in Dog Memorials & Funerary. There are over 3,000 reviews, and with such a positive ranking, this gift is definitely worth looking into.

Click to Find: The Paw Print Wind Chime

Pet Memorial Gift Idea3. Rainbow Bridge Pet Memorial Gifts – Cat Memorial Gifts

Manufacturer: OLDCOREY
Price: $14.95

Dimensions: 6.18 x 5.35 x 0.75″; 9.14 Ounces
Material: Wood (photo holder)                                                                                                                    and Acrylic


For anyone who has been owned by a cat, knows they leave such an impact on your life. As hard as it is to lose a cat, this gift helps keep their memory / spirit alive.

It is a beautiful piece that can be placed on a mantel, desk, or table…or somewhere special. The acrylic heart has a beautiful rainbow with two famous memorial statements as well as cute little paw prints and a cat figure on a crescent moon.

Beside the acrylic heart is a wood picture holder that will hold your favorite picture of your beloved cat.

It is a new product on the market, so there are not a lot of reviews. The reviews I found were mostly favorable, however, there were a couple that were concerned with the sharp edges of the product which could make it a little more difficult to gift to a friend or family member.

I see how that could be a concern; but the memento is absolutely stunning, and I would definitely display one in my home.

Click to find: Rainbow Bridge – Cat Memorial Gift


It is hard when your best friend passes over the Rainbow Bridge. How can you keep their memory alive without spending a fortune?

I know this is one of my shorter posts, but I wanted to at least show you some items that may help keep your pet’s spirit alive (or help one of your friends or family) at a reasonable cost.

These 3 items are definitely worth the price and you can find them on Amazon.

You can click on the picture or the link and it will take you to the item of your choosing.

Let me know if you purchased one of the items and tell me what you think of it? Have you purchased anything like it before? Which one do you like best?

Yes To Pets – A Successful Fundraiser Journey

In September 2022, my family had the opportunity to work with our community on a pet food and supply drive for one of the shelters in our area. Since COVID-19, a number of shelters have seen an influx of unwanted pets, so their pantries have become sparse. Due to the shelter’s need, I wondered if my sons’ karate dojo could do a food drive for Lost Our Home Pet Rescue in Tempe, AZ…and voila! Yes To Pets was born.

Where Did Yes To Pets Originate?

The story behind Yes to Pets is pretty interesting.

Once upon a time in March/April 2022…we began looking for a cat FOR our cat, Hunter. (Yes, we were looking for a cat for our cat!) We originally adopted Hunter from Lost Our Home Pet Rescue and loved how they care for their pets and how they interact with their community. So, we went back to Lost Our Home Pet Rescue to find a friend.

Lost Our Home Pet Rescue


Who is Lost Our Home Pet Rescue?

Lost Our Home is the only shelter in Arizona to open up their hearts to people who are facing difficult times. They want pets to stay with their families, so they provide short term shelter for pets while the pet parents work through financial instability, domestic violence, medical situations, or homelessness. Once people are able to get back on their feet, their pets are returned home to be with their families.

*According to their website, more than 1,700 pets have been reunited with their families!*

The shelter also has a food bank where people can get pet food and supplies when they are in need. This program helps families with up to 6 pets and for up to 6 months. Again, this helps keep pets with their families, instead of having to look for a new

I had an Idea!

When my family visited LOH, I noticed the pantry was fairly bare and I had an idea… Now that COVID is basically over…let’s get our karate dojo involved and do a food drive! Let’s overflow the shelves!

I discussed the idea with the owner of the karate dojo, and he said it’s a great idea. It allows the dojo and students to give back to the community and return to pre-COVID days. It could be a fun event and our students LOVE animals.

Poor Sensei was bombarded on a weekly basis of how and when we were going to start the food drive. It was going to take a little time to plan it and set it up so we could execute the plan.

The Mustard Seed Grows:

Little did I know, my small idea was going to become a large community event where over 25 local businesses would participate.

The Community Said Yes To Pets.Yes To Pets

Sensei thought about how we could make the food drive an absolute success. He came up with the great idea to not only involve the dojo, but to involve all of Ahwatukee businesses(our community). One day in June or July, he went to our local print shop, Print Smart to discuss some work to be done.

He looked down at the business mascot…a cute little Yorkie named Kayla and asked Dave, the owner…” Would you ever say no to her?” Dave, of course, said he would never say no to Kayla because she is part of the family.

Print Smart and Mountainside Martial Arts Said Yes!

At that time Sensei began talking of the idea of the food drive and the name “Yes to Pets”. It took no time for Dave to say he was all in. The excitement was palpable and Dave quickly created the logo and purchased the domain name within days. He also created the website and purchased the donation boxes that were placed in our local businesses.

And so the planning begins…and “Yes to Pets” was going to be launched September 1, 2022.

How Will We Get the Community Businesses Involved?

After discussing the idea with Dave, it became apparent, that he should definitely be involved in the decision-making. Sensei was also looking at how to get the word out to get community involvement. Enter our local newspaper, The Ahwatukee Foothills News (owned by Times Media Group).

The owner of the company made a generous offer to provide free advertising for the whole month of September. Not only was “Yes to Pets” advertised on their website, but it was also in the weekly print, and we had a number of articles written throughout the month. Click these links to read: ArticleArticle 1; Article 2

Local Businesses:

We were also able to obtain a list of local business who were members of the Ahwatukee Chamber of Commerce. There was so much excitement amongst the business owners about being able to be a part of the “Yes to Pets” food drive. We were able to place donation boxes in 26 locations throughout Ahwatukee.

The Excitement Catches On


I talked a little about Times Media Group and their willingness to donate ad space and write articles. What came next was truly amazing!

We were looking to reach more businesses and community members, so we reached out to our local news and radio stations. Our number 1 radio station, 97.9 KUPD’s morning show, Holmberg’s Morning Sickness, was generous and provided air time to promote the food drive. They also listed it on their social media pages to help increase awareness.

Local Businesses:

The Ahwatukee businesses also promoted the food drive on their websites and social media sites. Some even offered great discounts for their products if their customers brought in a donation.

We had about 3-4 large donation boxes filled throughout the community, that I asked the dojo staff to pick the donations so the businesses could collect more.

An Entire Month and a Community’s Generosity

It would be wrong to say everything went smoothly, but with the community’s generosity, Yes to Pets was a HUGE success. Without the 30 local businesses and the constant communication, and media presence, I don’t think we would have made s much of an impact as we did.

It was amazing to see number of people who truly care about pets and who were willing to help a local shelter who was in need of supplies. Ahwatukee local businesses stepped up and made an impact on a number of pets’ lives.

A number of businesses were able to fill up their large donation boxes early in the month to where the dojo staff collected the donations and stored them in their study center. That allowed for the businesses to collect more for the rest of the month.

I was beyond proud of what our community was able to do!

The Outcome

My nerves got the best of me at the beginning of the food drive because my name and my kids’ dojo name was on the line. What started out to be a small idea…a little seed…turned into a beautiful large undertaking.

My ultimate goal was to be able to overflow the shelves at LOH with food, toys, blankets, cleaning supplies, and I was worried that people / businesses wouldn’t respond or we would just be able to provide a fraction of what was hoped for.

Boy, was I wrong! (And yes, I should have listened to Sensei when he said everything would work out!)


At the end of September, my husband, my oldest son, one of the dojo employees and I went around Ahwatukee to collect donations. We filled a large portion of the dojo study center with so much food, blankets, treats, toys, cleaning supplies, and even some medicine. The room smelled like dog food!

On October 1st, 2022, it took 2 large SUVs and a truck and 2 trips (with all 3 vehicles) to the shelter to unload all the donations the Ahwatukee local businesses collected. There were so many donations, and Lost Our Home Pet Rescue was extremely grateful for what our community was able to achieve!

I will be honest…. I was exhausted after delivering all the donations, but my heart was full! I saw how a community can come together to help others without hesitation.

How Yes To Pets Changed Me

I have contemplated how Yes to Pets has changed me, and it is really in 2 ways.

  1. I love my community even more! It was so amazing to see the excitement and the drive of the local businesses to be a part of a food drive to help our local animal shelter. This food drive showed me that even after COVID, we are united and are willing to step out of our comfort zone to help others, regardless of the situation.
  2. I trust my abilities more. Now, I know this sounds a bit selfish…but it actually isn’t. This is actually part of my journey of finding who I am and what I am supposed to be when I grow up (obviously not Toys R Us Kid!) I have always been down on myself and always thought I wasn’t capable of being a part of something successful. I knew I could come up with ideas, but conveying them or trying to act on them seemed to always fall flat.

Side Note:

This Yes To Pets journey showed me that I am capable of being a part of something successful and that I can implement ideas and actions with the support of a community…and an amazing mentor…Sensei. It may not always be in the time frame of my choosing, but with patience and a positive attitude, success is possible.

This personal side of the journey showed how much I would prefer to work in animal welfare and create fundraisers or food/supply drives for those shelters in need. I want to see pets adopted and in good homes and shelters empty, but until then…. I want to be able to help the shelters by filling their pantries and helping them with supplies / medicinal necessities, etc…


Yes to Pets was a phenomenal success! A small idea turned into a community event and we are looking to do it again in September 2023.


Both Sensei and I agree…we want this to go Valley wide and eventually Nationwide. We want to stock the shelves of the rescues throughout the U.S. The only question is…are you in? Would you be willing to help out in your community? Can all of us provide the necessities to where the rescues can help more pets and families?

My challenge for all of us is to find a shelter or organization to where we can alleviate some of the pressure of every day needs.

Are you in?