Friday, September 4, 2015

It's Fun to Follow Blogs Outside of Our Niche


Today, for just a few moments I am going to pussyfoot OUT of cat mode! Yes!! I am!!

Sometimes it is important to venture out of cat mode (or in my case, cat AND dog mode). Wait! I no longer love cats? Or dogs? Nope, I never said that. I just said that sometimes I need a break from reading about cats and dogs, and that is when I deeply appreciate the list of blogs that I follow outside of the Pet Niche.

Some of my favorites are:
(Ok so the word "Paws" is in the title, sue me lol)


Believe me when I tell you that this list in no way covers all of them There are close to 200 on my follow list that are NOT pet related. (GASP!!!)

Don't get my wrong. My core blog follow list is 99% pet related blogs. It is also fun to follow all sorts of blogs because you meet people outside of your niche with different viewpoints and perspectives on blogging, and you learn about a myriad of topics outside of the pet realm. Sometimes, there is a bonus that you happen to follow a blogger outside of the pet niche who has a cat, dog or both!! When that happens you often gain new followers!!! 


One of my favorite non-pet blogs that I follow is:

 Written by Ellen Ross, Ask Away was started by Ellen "to give people a place to come for advice on anything and everything.  I've always been known as the advice giver and I can give advice from an unbiased standpoint."

I have been following Ellen for a few years now and an extra bonus to her blog is she has the most adorable Chihuahua furbabies!!

Ellen covers topics such as:


AND MORE!!

Ellen is quite a bit younger than me, (as most of the bloggers I follow in ANY niche are), but I love that. It helps keeps me young at heart and in spirit, and keeps me up-to-date in reference to topics such as pop culture, music, fashion, technology and what is important to young people today.

I have always had friends of all ages and for me, it doesn't matter if a blogger is 20 or 100. If I like their blog I will follow.

Recently, I was reading Ellen's blog and she had an amazing give-away for some new cleaning products that I had never heard of:

Murchison-Hume was created by former Fashion Editor and mother of two, Max Kater when her son developed allergic sensitivities to common household cleaning products. She made it her mission to create products that would be safe, easy to use, beautiful and effective.

You choose carefully and work hard to keep your family safe and make your home beautiful. We’re here to help you keep it that way. Clean is easy. Clean is beautiful.

The products I won from the
Murchison-Hume  line:

AND
AND I WON!!
My items arrived this past week and I could not be happier! I have mostly been using the counter safe All-Surface Spray (I have been using it in the kitchen), and not only does it WORK, but it smells FANTASTIC!!!! Not like a cleaner at all!!!

There are other reasons why I love this product line and will definitely be ordering from them and you can see those reasons right on their product label:


The Murchison-Hume products are:
100% CRUELTY FREE
NEVER TESTED ON ANIMALS
AND THEY ARE
PEOPLE, PET AND PLANT SAFE!!!

I am in love with the Murchison-Hume product line and I thank Ellen for hosting the give-away and for introducing me to them! 

See what I mean? When you follow blogs OUTSIDE of your niche, you never know what fabulous people you will meet, what new information you will discover and what amazing new products you will find!!! 

C'mon...step OUTSIDE of the litter box for a change, it's FUN!!!


Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Kitty Couch Sofa Cat Scratcher by Feline Be Mine:Winners!!

HUGE CONCATULATIONS 
TO THE LUCKY WINNERS!!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway


YOU ARE GOING TO LOVE THIS!!
we apologize that we don't know
if Betty has a blog, but our friend Ellen does and you can visit it by clicking here or below the photo:

Monday, August 31, 2015

Pet Tree Houses:"Purrveyors of Natural Feline Fun" Review and Discount Code!

Tomorrow, September 1st, is the beginning of Happy Cat Month. The mission of Happy Cat Month is:  "celebrating the month that is all about ensuring companion cats are happy, healthy, enriched, and valued." (From theCATalyst Council). To help keep YOUR cat happy, today I am pleased and honored to feature what are, in my opinion, the most SUPERB cat trees on the market: Pet Tree Houses.

Back in June I had the complete pleasure of speaking on the telephone with Joe DelRocco, one of the creators and  owners of Pet Tree Houses. After speaking with Joe on the telephone for approximately an hour, I learned so much about why these amazing trees were created, and the depth of study that went into their design, The knowledge that Joe and his wife Shelley (co-owner and co-designer of Pet Tree Houses), have about cats makes  the Pet Tree Houses stand out as superior in a sea of mediocre cat trees that are saturating the market.

Joe was previously a custom home builder of million dollar homes and he and his wife Shelley, share a passion for animals.   Joe and Shelley designed their first Pet Tree House for their own cats in 2008.  The premise was twofold:  to create an aesthetically pleasing feline tree house and a tree that the cats would actually use  and would be a realistic outdoor experience for them making them feel more at home in their natural environment. 



Joe wanted to change the culture of what people think of cat product manufacturers-
What does this mean? 
That many who produce items for cats:
 a) don't understand cats
 b) don't understand their owners.

Many cat product manufacturers don't do adequate research when creating their products, they don't design products that will sufficiently address what cats needs are. They design products that are not durable.

They also manufacture products that often aren't "human-friendly". Often this is portrayed by making difficult to put together items and items that are, for a lack of better verbage, SIMPLY BORING TO LOOK AT and are BORING for the pet.

THE PET TREE HOUSE MISSION: Pet Tree Houses – Real Cat Trees With Leaves

Our mission is simple. Offer the highest-quality handcrafted real cat trees so that your feline companion feels as if they are living in their true nature. 



Joe explained to me how "cats do nothing by chance", they are "calculating", he went on to say that "cats, REMEMBER, while dogs have a short term memory", and cats thrive in a "behavior based" environment. Cats pick up on organic scents, which is just one of many reasons why Pet Tree Houses are made with REAL TREES.

Joe and Shelley focused on the "instinctive needs" of cats when creating the Pet Tree Houses. The Pet Tree Houses allow cats to have their private hideaway. They can scratch and stretch on REAL TREE BARK that is crafted by HAND.

The leaves are designed to "mimic the wild" from the "rustling" sound they make when the cat is in the tree house. Joe explained that even a cat who was not feral instinctively knows what that sound is.
Also, while Cody is a chewer and I KNEW he would chew the leaves, the broad shape of the leaves deters chewing and the cat CANNOT CHEW THEM UP.

Cody keeps trying but he can't chew this up!


The foliage has been carefully selected by its shape to provide visual and audible stimulation while minimizing the possibility of cats chewing on the leaves for instinctive digestive needs.

Yes!! The trees are REAL!!!

They are harvested from sustainable forests found only in the Southeastern United States then are carefully dried to maximize their strength and durability. There is no need to water or maintain the tree.





Joe and Shelley have spent years perfecting the engineering of the tree house and continue to strive to exceed their customers’ expectations.  Each tree is hand crafted and takes up to 1,000 individual cuts to build.  The real trees are hand selected as is the cedar to provide the highest quality indoor habitats available today.



WE RECEIVED THE:

KIT-TY TREE DELUXE WITH TOPPER

SPECIFICATIONS:
The KIT-TY Tree Deluxe has a canopy of leaves over the top platform that the standard KIT-TY Tree does not.
The KIT-TY tree is 4 levels of pure fun! Standing nearly 72" high, adorned with silk foliage; this tree is sure to bring out your cat's true nature!
Base is 21" x 21"
1st Platform is 16" x 21"
2nd Platform is 16" x 16"
3rd Platform is 16" x 16"
APPROXIMATE ASSEMBLY TIME IS ONE HOUR. 
HERE IS THE PHOTO OF
OUR FINISHED TREE!!


Let me tell you not only does Cody love it, but I cannot stop looking at it! It is a room enhancer, unlike most cat trees on the market.

Now back to set up:
When my tree arrived, I panicked.The tree that I received was a "do-it-yourself" tree. Uh-oh... I have never been known for my mechanical ability!

When Joe was talking to me on the phone he told me that his purpose in designing the DIY trees was to make it easy for owners to put together. He is fully aware that most trees on the market are difficult to put together.

Joe went on to say that his instructions are designed to be similar to the color-coded instructions of Grrranimals from back in the day! (Each part of my tree was clearly color-coded).

 Joe told me REPEATEDLY that I needed a CORDLESS SCREWDRIVER (and maybe pliers, but definitely the cordless screwdriver!!)  Stubborn cuss that I am,I  kept telling Joe that  I could put it together without one.

I COULDN'T. THIS WAS NOT THE FAULT OF JOE OR PET TREE HOUSES! I called Joe at least 3 times and HE COULD NOT HAVE BEEN MORE HELPFUL. He had me text him photos of what I was doing, he explained every step. HAD I HAD THE ITEMS HE SAID I NEEDED I COULD HAVE PUT THIS TOGETHER MYSELF.

IMPORTANT POINT: If you purchase a DIY kit you will NOT be left in a lurch alone and confused (and panicking like me!) There is help available on their toll free number (877-971-TREE (8733)  to answer any and all questions! The customer service that I received and the patience shown to me was superb!

 I did not have the items that I needed, so I was unable to put my tree together myself. As you will see in the collage below, Cody was moping (because his old tree was gone and he didn't understand the BEST TREE EVER would soon be taking its place.)

I called the office at the apt/condo complex where I live, and our buddy Edward who works maintenance here, (being the Angel and life-saver that he is),  agreed to come over, and I paid him to put the tree together:

A zillion thank yous to Edward!!!

Pet Tree Houses also offers
custom and unique 
"Branch Work"

Replacement branches
can be purchased if necessary

Their craftsmen are dedicated
to creating the 
most attractive, durable,
and unique pet habitats
available ANYWHERE 
at ANY PRICE!!



CLEANING IS A BREEZE!!!
The tree house is made out of natural wood, cedar and dragonwood tree. The carpet is attached using Velcro. If you need to remove it to clean it or vacuum it, simply pull the carpet up by its corners and put it back into place after you have cleaned it. The carpet can be hand washed and line dried.



TO MAINTAIN THE LEAVES:
simply wipe the leaves off using a damp cloth when necessary to eliminate dust. We have had our tree since the end of June and it has barely accumulated ANY dust, if at all.





Pet Tree Houses have received many
 industry awards for their habitats

 They received Cat Fancy Magazine's 'Editors Choice Award" 6 years in a row! They also hold the Guinness Book of World Records for The World's Tallest Cat Scratching Tree!

What Does Cody Think Of His Pet Tree House?


I would say his expression of pure bliss says it ALL!!!

It didn't take Cody more than a few days to designate his Pet Tree House as his new FAVORITE hangout. I think at first, it was so nice, that he thought he was not permitted to climb on it!  I put a few treats on each level and that was it!

Now that Cody and I have a Pet Tree House there is NO GOING BACK for us. How could we? There isn't a tree on the market that we could ever hope to have that has all of the features and benefits that our tree from Pet Tree Houses has. None would ever be as well-made or be made with the craftsmanship, love and study as the trees from Pet Tree Houses are. There simply is no comparison. Nothing else comes close. From customer service, to quality, to being good for my cat, to the aesthetics of this gorgeous tree, there isn't another tree we could ever want or need.


A Pet Tree House is the ONLY pet tree you will ever need. They are an investment,  but one that will bring far more years of joy than many of the inferior competitors on the market. These Tree Houses will not only enhance the lives of your cat, but they will make your home look fabulous too!

Cody and I not only give Pet Tree Houses FOUR paws up, our tails are up too!!!


Joe, Shelley and furbabies!!
Photo Courtesy of Twitter


Did I mention what a complete delight Joe and Shelley DelRocco are as people? Every communication I had with them, be it phone or email, was full of warmth. It's no wonder they have a superior product!

DISCOUNT CODE FOR OUR READERS!!
Joe and Shelley  are generously offering an exclusive discount code for our readers!!!! To receive a 15% DISCOUNT just enter CODY15 at checkout!

Visit Pet Tree Houses online
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Twitter
Facebook



FTC Disclosure: I received this product for review at no charge. Receiving the free product did not influence my review. Cody and I never hesitate to give you our honest opinions!

Friday, August 28, 2015

Rainbow Bridge Remembrance Day-Honoring My Angel Bobo

Today it is an honor to be a part of the first annual:
ABOUT RAINBOW BRIDGE REMEMBRANCE DAY:

This special day was created by Deborah Barnes – author, award winning blogger, and cat advocate in tribute to her cat, Mr. Jazz, who she had to say goodbye to on August 28, 2013. She shared the journey of letting him go in her most recent book, “Purr Prints of – A Cat’s Tale of Life, Death,and Beyond,” a warm and heartfelt book that is written in the wise and comforting voice of Mr. Jazz himself as he shares his life and death journey to offer guidance and understanding through a cat’s perspective as to why sometimes letting a pet go can be the greatest gift you give them. 

On behalf of Deb Barnes, Purr Prints of the Heart, and the Zee/Zoey Gang – thank you all for your support. To share your post on Facebook, click here.

In order to not make this post overly "photo heavy" I have created three collages to honor my beloved Bobo whom I was blessed to share my life with from December 1989 until July 2, 2007.

Bobo was found as a stray in sub-zero temperatures when he was approximately six months old. He spent every day of his life showing me his gratitude for having rescued him, and more unconditional love and devotion than I ever thought could exist. His life cannot accurately be portrayed in a mere three collages, but that is all I can do for now. Many of the photos I am sharing with you today,  you have not seen, (I apologize for their poor quality, but they were taken before the days of cell phones and blogging), and I will offer some explanation of the photos. Please join me in remembering my beloved Bobo with all of my love and with a heart that still breaks and grieves when I gaze upon his photos and share these memories.

In this collage you will see in the top left some of Bobo's favorite toys that I cannot bring myself to part with, nor do I ever allow Cody to play with them. The photo on the top left shows them in the bag in which they are stored, in the bottom photo you see his "kitty" that he slept with every day, his stuffed woofie, a mouse, two balls and his catnip pillow with a picture of a kitty that looked so much like him.

In the photo on the top right, are his last bowls that are kept in a trunk for safe-keeping. I have never let Cody use them. They were Bobo's and as much as I love Cody, I never could bring myself to allow him to use these bowls.
This collage is rather eerie when you hear a story that accompanies it. First, why in the world I bought my mancat a PINK carrier is beyond me! For the life of me I have no idea why I did that!

The bottom left photo shows my maiden name with Bobo's name on top of the carrier, all ready for for trips to the vet. The photo on the right is my Bobo sitting on TOP of his carrier which he used to do ALL of the time!

The photo on the top left is a photo of the  carrier as it looks today.  I keep it in the closet of my office, everything in it is exactly as it was since the day he crossed the bridge.I haven't changed or touched a thing. I sometimes think I should dispose of it, but I can't. It will be with me always.

What is eerie is one day I couldn't find Cody. I searched everywhere, and when I finally found him I found him IN the closet, IN Bobo's carrier. He had opened the door, crept in, and it has now become  one of his favorite sleeping spots. He does this nearly EVERY DAY.  I like to think that on some level he and Bobo are communicating, and I am convinced that they are. How and why Cody ever discovered this in the closet, I have no idea. For some reason it brings Cody happiness and comfort to sleep there, and it makes me happy that he does it.

I leave you with a photo of Bobo on the top left in his eating area when we moved to Michigan in 2001. 

The other photos show him on the couch that was Lenny's before we were married. There is a photo on the top right of Lenny and Bobo. Lenny didn't meet Bobo until he was 12 years old and had already slowed down considerably, but they were blessed to have six years together. Sadly, that is the same couch that the Vet helped him cross the Bridge on and we no longer have it. I just couldn't keep it, it caused me enormous pain every time I looked at it.

I used to think Bobo's markings were so unique until I saw a number of cats in the blogosphere who looked so much like him it was uncanny! I adored his perfect four white paws and his "bib", he was such a handsome boy.

He wasn't a people cat as Cody is, I often wondered what Bobo experienced in the months before he found me. He didn't like strangers, he was a much more fearful cat than Cody (who is fearless), but he had a sensitivity and a remarkable way of being attuned to every nuance of my being that was something that isn't experienced often in ones' lifetime. When I hurt, he hurt, and vice versa.

The Rainbow Bridge poem was given to me by a friend when Bobo passed. I keep it in a frame in my office, where it still brings me comfort.

I didn't intend for this post to be quite this long, and I thank you for taking the time to read it. I also would like to thank Deb Barnes for creating this wonderful event.

I send my love to each and every one of you, and look forward to reading your stories and seeing your photos of those "who came before." May we all derive some comfort from these posts. 


 
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