Wednesday, May 24, 2017

An "Angel" of a Cat Sofa/Scratcher Bed

Early last winter I had the pleasure of meeting the Cat Mom from the blog Eastside Cats. I had gathered together some items that Cody wasn't using that I thought her kitties would enjoy.  Last Valentine's Day the Eastside Cat Mom blogged about how much her kitty, Angel, LOVED the cat sofa scratcher bed that Cody had given to her, and she had sent me these photos:

Photo courtesy of Eastside Cats
Photo Courtesy of Eastside Cats
Then, just a couple of days ago, I got a text from Angel's Mama with two more photos showing me that Angel is STILL in love with that sofa scratcher bed:

Photo Courtesy of Eastside Cats
Photo Courtesy of Eastside Cats
This makes me sooooooo happy!!! Angel's Mama said she had to purchase another one to make it a "double-wide." I nearly died laughing! For those who might want to purchase one, it is called the Kitty Couch Sofa Cat Scratcher by Feline Be Mine. (We reviewed it in 2015) It is sold on Amazon and no, there are NO affiliate links in this post and we get nothing for mentioning it. Just wanted to pass the info on in case you want one for YOUR kitties, there is NOTHING in it for us!

Kitties, do you think Angel loves that Sofa Scratcher so much because she can smell Cody? Discuss!!

Monday, May 22, 2017

Pet Loss and Children: "Staying Strong for Smokey" and "Being Brave for Bailey" by Corey Gut, DVM (Give-Away!!)


"Tis better to have loved and lost
Than never to have loved at all"
--Alfred Lord Tennyson

Losing a beloved pet is one of the most heart-breaking experiences that anyone who shares their life with a pet will ever have to face.  It is hard enough for adults to understand,  but how does one explain it to the special children in their life?

Explaining to a child that their beloved pet whom often they have known since they were born is aging, and ill, and that the most caring thing that you can do for that pet is to help them "pass peacefully to a safe place" is a difficult concept for adults to grasp, let alone a child.
Photo Courtesy of Corey Gut, DVM

"Smokey is a cherished family pet who has been a loving companion and friend to all. But Smokey has become very sick and her quality of life has diminished. It's time for the family to make an extremely difficult decision.

Death and euthanasia are difficult concepts for a child to grasp and accept. "Staying Strong for Smokey" introduces these difficult subjects and helps guide children through the complex and frightening emotions that are inevitable. Written by a veterinarian with assistance from an elementary counselor, this book and its canine counterpart "Being Brave for Bailey" are valuable tools for broaching these topics"

I had the honor in July of 2016 of reviewing Dr. Corey's first book: Being Brave for Bailey on Dakota's blog Being Brave for Bailey by Corey Gut, DVM,  is a sensitive, touching and beautiful book,  that is written with a great deal of compassion and  in a charming rhyming manner, that is geared towards elementary school children. It was inspired by a true story when Dr.Corey's niece was experiencing the loss of her beloved pet.

I  am honored to know "Dr.Corey" (as all at the Vet call her!), and to have received a copy of her second book, Staying Strong for Smokey.

While reading Staying Strong for Smokey, I cried. Yes, I did. It brought me back to when my beloved Bobo crossed the Bridge and I held him close and sobbed into his fur. I cried at one of the exquisite illustrations (by Kim Stahl), that showed a tiny smoky gray paw clutching the fingertips of a hand. A hand that was adorned with a bracelet that a broken heart dangled from. I lost it. 

Please do not let the fact that I cried deter you from purchasing this important book. Staying Strong for Smokey is sad, but it is also a book that is full of love and encourages pet adoption when the individual who is grieving is ready. It leaves children and adults with the knowledge that one day they WILL have another pet who they will love with all of their heart again, and one whom they will  create new memories with. It lets children know that even though now they are hurting, the memories and love they shared with their beloved pet will NEVER leave.

 When I was finished reading this sensitive and touching book, I mentioned to my husband how I love that Dr.Corey wrote both books in a rhyming style and was seeking the proper way to convey that to all of you who read this review. My husband then handed me the perfect quote:

"Poetry:the best words in the best order"

The quote could NOT be more perfect. Staying Strong for Smokey and Being Brave for Bailey are brilliant examples of that quote. "the best words in the best order."

Though geared towards children, Staying Strong for Smokey  brought ME comfort. As was the case in Being Brave for Bailey, at  the back of the book is a helpful section called "Activity ideas for further support" that lists some wonderful ideas to help a child, (and in my opinion, adults would benefit from many of these same activities),  cope with the loss of their pet, such as:

Make a scrapbook, a photo album or a memory box: I did this when Bobo passed. I could not bear to not see him every day. I bought a number of collage frames so that I would have photos of Bobo in every room that I entered.

Plant a Tree or a flower bed in your yard in honor of your pet

Create a website or social media page to honor your pet.

Donate to an animal rescue group in your pet's name

and more! 

DID I MENTION HOW MUCH
I LOVE THESE BOOKS?

When I was about 6 years old, our family pet (a Boxer named Brandy), passed at the young age of 7 from cancer. Neither of my parents discussed her passing with us. All we knew was she was sick, the next day she was gone. It was never addressed. I loved her dearly and never completely understood what happened. How I wish these books had been available to me back then! Both Staying Strong for Smokey and Being Brave for Bailey deal with a sensitive subject in a caring, loving and gentle way that will not frighten a child. They are written in language that children will understand  and that will not overwhelm them.. The illustrations in both books are touching and beautiful. Both are hard-cover books that are the perfect size for both parents and children to read together, and that will offer parents (and any adult who reads them with a child), the opportunity to encourage further discussion and share their feelings. Allowing feelings to be shared is an important step in the grieving process.

 The nicely sized pages are just the right size for tiny little hands. These books would make wonderful bedtime reads, and would also be great in a classroom where teachers could address the subject of pet loss with their students.  These books would be fabulous to donate to a school, community library, doctor's office, etc. or to give as a gift to anyone in your life who has experienced the loss of a beloved pet.

Photo taken by the QUEEN
of selfie-takers!
Dr.Corey Gut
I am truly blessed.  Dr.Corey happens to be a Vet at the same practice that has been caring for my pets for approximately 16 years.  Cody and I  have often written about "Dr.Smiley" (who primarily takes care of Dakota and Cody, and he also took care of our Angel Bobo). We are blessed that the practice has  Dr.Corey as a member of their superb staff as well. I recently learned that Dr.Corey has taken HER pets to the same practice throughout her childhood years. Before becoming a Vet, she was an employee there during her High School years. Then, she went on to get her education to become a Vet.  

When I am saying that both Staying Strong for Smokey and Being Brave for Bailey are written with warmth, sensitivity, knowledge and love, I am saying it with FIRST HAND knowledge of WHO Dr. Corey is as a person. Dr.Corey has an aura of warmth and love that exudes from her being the second you meet her in person. This same aura is evident in her written communication as well.  She is loving, kind, knowledgeable, caring and a true professional.  


FURTHER ACCOLADES:







TO PURCHASE



ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Corey Gut is a veterinarian in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan. She has loved working in a wide variety of veterinary fields but finds her current job of caring for pets and their families the most personally rewarding.

ABOUT THE ILLUSTRATOR
Kim Stahl has been a high school science educator for the past 22 years where she has taught biology, chemistry, botany, and zoology courses. Kim loves animals and has been drawing as a hobby throughout her life. She lives in Lake Orion, Michigan with her husband and their Golden Retrievers, Kodi and Cooper. Kim's two furry "boys" are loved and cared for by Dr.Corey Gut.

GIVE-AWAY!!! Dr. Corey is generously offering THREE of our readers who are 18 and over and who reside in the U.S. the chance to win a copy of either Staying Strong for Smokey or Being Brave for Bailey. Entering is super easy, just enter on the rafflecopter below (watch for TWO mandatory entry requirements) and a bonus entry. GOOD LUCK!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway







In full disclosure: We were not compensated to share this book with you. It is our pleasure to share this beautiful book and the author with a heart of gold who wrote it.

Friday, May 19, 2017

Winners of Rachael Ray Nutrish Indoor Complete Super Premium Food for Cats

Hi furiends! Thanks to all who entered our GIVE-AWAY!!!

HUGE CONCATULATIONS

TO THE LUCKY WINNERS

LISTED BELOW!!
a Rafflecopter giveaway


Sunday, May 14, 2017

The Reluctant Mother's Day Participant

Ok, as you can see, Cody was a most UNWILLING Mother's Day participant.  Doesn't matter, I love him just the same.

Quite often, some of the best Moms
are NOT biological, and 
they don't have to be female.
Whomever or whatever it is
that you "mother" unconditionally,
YOU matter, YOU rock
We salute you and thank you!

Have a wonderful Mother's Day!

Friday, May 12, 2017

Cats You CAN have a GREAT and DELICIOUS Indoor Life! Plus A Give-Away!

Rachael Ray Nutrish has sponsored this post, but all opinions are my own.





Hi Kitties! It's Cody taking over the blog today!
 


If you are a regular around here you will remember that back in March I meowed about some new food from my pals at Rachael Ray Nutrish, it is Indoor Complete Super Premium Food for Cats, Chicken with Lentils and Salmon recipe. I cannot believe I have been eating this deliciousness for almost two months now! (Yes, I had been eating Nutrish prior to that, but I didn't try Indoor Complete until March.)




Some people think that because I am an indoor kitty my life is lacking. Well, I am here to tell you that it most definitely is NOT!  I have plenty of places to sleep, ample places to hide, TONS of toys, a Sheltie brother to play with and a Mom and Dad that think the world of me!



I don't have coyotes  (who happen to be in our area), coming after me, and I have no worries about cars and other outside dangers. 



 I don't think I am missing a thing by being an Indoor kitty, allow me to give you a peek into my day.


At approximately 3am I begin jumping on Dad's face wanting some of my yummy Nutrish. Now, if Mom is sleeping like a log, Dad will relent and get up and give it to me. If Mom wakes up, "fuhget about it!" She has the complete NERVE to close the bedroom door, right  in my ADORABLE face!! Do you believe it?  The NERVE of her! I was beyond incredulous the first time THAT happened!  I  just plant myself outside the door and wait until my Dad comes out. While waiting I sometimes become sleepy, then I begin to dream about the moment I can dig into my food. Below is just one portion of my wonderful dream.


I also  begin to think about all of the reasons why I love my Indoor Complete Chicken with Lentils and Salmon recipe  so much


Real U.S. farm-raised chicken is always the #1 ingredient, plus real salmon.
Lentils are naturally rich in fiber and protein and low in fat. They help support healthy metabolism and optimal body weight.
Dandelion greens & pumpkin are nutrient and fiber rich. Dandelion greens also contain natural prebiotics to aid in healthy digestion.
Cranberries & blueberries are antioxidant-rich fruits that are great sources of essential vitamins and minerals, like Vitamin C, to help support a healthy immune system.
Safely USA cooked with the world’s best ingredients.
No ground corn, wheat, soy or poultry by-product meal.
Intended for adult cats only (1 year or older).

Mom and Dad have noticed that I seem to have much more energy since I have been eating Indoor Complete. I will come flying over the baby gate to cause trouble play with my Sheltie brother, and I will get the "zoomies" much more than I used to! I usually eat my Indoor Complete traditionally in my bowl.
Other times, Mom will put my Indoor Complete in my treat dispenser and I will have a blast. Then, the other day when I had finished my first bag of Indoor Complete, Mom gave me the bag (under CLOSE SUPERVISION, KITTIES TELL YOUR HUMANS TO NEVER, EVER LEAVE YOU ALONE WITH AN OPEN BAG OF FOOD!) and let me go to town. I began pushing it across the floor:
And I even began to wrestle it!
After a good game of (let's go to the WRONG end of the bag and try and get some food out of it) Mom and I settled down to try out the NEW NUTRISH MOJI'S APP!!! Oh kitties is it ever FUN!!!! It is available for download on iOS and android and users can upload a picture of their pet and turn it into a custom sticker: http://apps.swyftmedia.com/nutrishMojis 
If you notice above on the left, that is the home page of the app. You put your paw (or your human's finger) on that button and it will open the app! All your human has to do (because our paws are too big to manage it), is trace a photo of you with their finger and then they can make some super pawesome stickers that you see above to the right, and down below. (If MY Mom can do this,, ANYONE CAN!!)  The stickers above to the right are actually separate stickers, but Mom combined them for the collage. The same with the stickers below. 
These are actually three separate stickers that Mom made into a collage. As you can see they have some adorable ones to play with, (my kiss-up Sheltie brother got into the act too!!) They are SOOO much fun  and you can share them on Instagram and your other social channels! By the way kitties, if you aren't already, be sure to follow NUTRISH on Instagram (@Nutrish and follow Mom too @catanddogcaren ) 
In between my meals I try to think of the kitties and other animals  who are less fortunate than I am.  One of many, many reasons that I love the peeps at Nutrish and especially Rachael Ray is: 


Rachael’s Rescue® was created for all of the forgotten pets – the ones who might not have someone who loves them as much as they deserve. A portion of proceeds from each sale of Nutrish is donated to The Rachael Ray Foundation, which helps animals in need through Rachael’s Rescue. Through December 2016, Rachael’s Rescue has donated more than $17.5 million dollars to pet charities and other organizations that do good for animals. The funds are used for food, medical supplies, treatments, and more for animals in need. Many more animals around the country need help, and through Rachael’s Rescue, together we can make a difference in the lives of many four-legged friends.

Thank you Rachael Ray Nutrish for caring so much about all of the animals, but especially all of us kitties!!!! 
After all of that playing and eating, it is time for me to start thinking about lunch and dinner...I suggest you start thinking about it too!
INDOOR KITTIES! TELL YOUR HUMAN TO GO TO THE STORE NOW AND GET SOME RACHAEL RAY NUTRISH, INDOOR COMPLETE! 
Rachael Ray™ Nutrish® Indoor Complete Chicken with Lentils& Salmon Recipe is a natural food for cats with added vitamins, minerals & taurine. This recipe contains a real superfood blend to meet the complete needs of your adult indoor cat and is available right where you shop for your family’s groceries!!
This is OUR actual bag in our shopping cart
 that my Mom  BOUGHT with her OWN MONEY!!!
Kitties!! Guess what? We have a give-away!!! Our incredibly pawesome furiends at Nutrish are going to send FIVE PEOPLE (who reside in the U.S. and who are age 18 and over) a coupon for a free bag of  Indoor Complete Chicken With Lentils & Salmon Recipe. Entering is super easy, just enter on the Rafflecopter below, good luck!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

 
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