Monthly Archives: February 2012

DoggySnooze Elevated, Chew Resistant Dog Beds on JustLuxe.com

DoggySnooze elevated chew resistant orthopedic dog bed featured on JustLuxe.com

Read about DoggySnooze dog beds on JustLuxe.com

Team DoggySnooze enjoys reading about how much dogs are enjoy their new, comfortable, elevated dog beds. Here’s a recent article from JustLuxe.com detailing how Bertha is having a grand time with her new DoggySnooze snoozeSofa.

DoggySnooze snoozeSofa elevated dog bed as enjoyed by a bulldog

Bertha the bulldog enjoys her snoozeSofa

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DoggyRide Talks 6 Top Takeaways About Cycling with Your Dog with Mark Solow of Cycle Highland Village

Young or old, big or small, just about anyone and any dog can enjoy DoggyRide trailers and strollers. Mark Solow, and avid bike rider and DoggyRide enthusiast in Texas shares his story about how biking with the DoggyRide has helped both him and his dog make new friends and increase visibility for his local cycling group. Mark has also gotten healthier and lost weight with the increased use of his bike and the DoggyRide.

Read on for more of Mark Solow’s story with 6 key takeaways on riding with the DoggyRide.

We hope that his adventures with his dog Roxy inspires you to continue to ride and explore with your dog and the DoggyRide as well.

Q1.What motivated you to originally purchase your Mini dog bike trailer?
A1. We took our dog on walks daily until we got into biking. My wife and I fell in love with biking again (we call it “rebiking”) in our 50s over a year ago. We wanted to still be able to get exercise and include our dog. Now we take our dog on adventures. She loves it more than walks!

Roxy enjoying her DoggyRide Mini

Q2. What have you enjoyed most about the product?

A2. Since most of our bike riding is shorter trips, usually under 7 miles, it allows me to get more exercise in a shorter distance. i.e. pulling a trailer is like running with ankle weights. That’s my favorite thing. We also love to talk to people we meet along the way and in our biking group.

Roxy in her Mini DoggyRide has become our group mascot. We try to bike whenever we can (grocery store, bank, hair salon, hardware store, dental appointments, restaurants, etc.) and it is very unusual for us not to include our dog wherever we can bike.

Q3. What have you enjoyed least about the DoggyRide?

A3. We love the way the Mini is designed. We love and use the large rear pocket and the water bottle holder. We love the balance and overall design. We are in Texas. In the summer I wish there was some sort of on-board water dispenser that was splash-proof.

The good news here is that we’re currently working on finding an effective way to add an on-board water dispensation system.

Q4. What kind of other experiences or reactions has riding with the DoggyRide trailer elicited?

A4.My wife and I rode in the 30th Annual Hotter‘N Hell bike rally in Wichita Falls, TX last August (along with over 13,000 others). Roxy and the trailer were a huge hit. We can’t wait to take her to more events like this. We know that whenever we go to either of the local pet stores (PetSmart, Petco) that we will need to plan on spending more time because dog owners there always want to talk to us.

Ruth and Roxy are ready to tour with their DoggyRide Mini!

The DoggyRide is a great conversation starter and tool with which to break the ice and hopefully make new friends!

Q5. How has riding with the trailer and your dog improved the overall enjoyment of your biking experience?

A5. Adding the dog to our biking experience has made biking so much more enjoyable. Our dog gets so excited to go when we say, “You want to go in your trailer?”. I am always looking for errands to run. I’ve lost over 20 lbs.

We love hearing how owners have grown to enjoy exercise even more — now even with their pets in tow! Better still is hearing about happy owners’ improved health!

Q6. What other information/tips/details would you like to share with other consumers who may be considering buying a DoggyRide trailer or stroller?

A6. I can’t speak to the stroller. That makes sense to me for someone who may not bike and has a really old dog or one with a disability that can’t go on a walk on their own. Or, maybe for a runner/jogger who wants to include their dog in their routine like we do. Since we organize weekly group rides (see www.facebook.com/cyclehighlandvillage click on “Events” to see past events), unlike other riding groups, we are anything but routine. We like to change the route and destination every week. Sometimes that involves what we call a “drive and drop”. We drive our cars to a starting destination and ride our bikes from there. I love how easy and quick it is to fold up the trailer so we can easily fit it in our car and include Roxy.

Other DoggyRide owners who drive hatchback or SUV vehicles may be happy to know that DoggyRide trailers can also be used as a carrying crate in the back of the car once the wheels are easily removed to allow for a dog to continue to ride safely, comfortably and in style, in the back of the car.

The DoggyRide trailer converts to a tent or crate for the back of the car.

Learn more about DoggyRide product on our website at www.doggyride.com, ‘Like’ us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/doggyride and feel free to tweet us at www.twitter.com/doggyride.

You can learn more about Mark and his Texas cycling group, Cycle Highland Village, on their Facebook page: www.facebook.com/cyclehighlandvillage. They also have a Facebook Group for cycling members and interested parties to use for discussions and sharing of news, stories, etc.

Cycling Highland Village takes a break for a photo.

Photos courtesy of Mark Solow and DoggyRide.

If you have fun cycling stories you’d like to also share with us, please email them to: monika (at) dutchdogdesign.com

Sunny Sundays Make for Great Doggy Photo Shoots

Menno enjoying the sunshine, in his new Dutch Dog Amsterdam leash

Recently, the DoggyRide team from Dutch Dog Design had the pleasure of heading out to the dog park for an afternoon of fun, sun and photography. We’re excited to begin the process of bringing you a new DoggyRide product, helping you and your dog to more fully enjoy the outdoors together, within the next few months. But, before we do so, we had to take some fun photos.

Menno enjoyed his time outdoors, strolling in the sun, meeting other dogs, and of course, modeling some of our other products. Here are a few photos of Menno enjoying a sunny Sunday afternoon at the park along the waterfront in Seattle, modeling a few Dutch Dog Amsterdam leashes to boot.

Orthopedic dog beds – facts and fiction

We claim that the DoggySnooze dog bed can be classified as an orthopedic dog bed, so we better explain why. We also use the term healthy dog bed, so when something is orthopedic,  something is healthy. We prefer to call our dog bed healthy over orthopedic, because we believe that as a resting place, it is much healthier for the long-term, while the term orthopedic gives a sense of being therapeutic.

Happy dog on the snoozeLounge by DoggySnooze

Well, let’s analyze it and see whether we can classify as healthy, orthopedic, just comfy, or all of the above.

First, we would like to make a disclaimer here. There is no government standard or official designation that will qualify one dog bed orthopedic and the other not. This reality has created much confusion in the dog bedding industry, to the point that the typical consumer is not able to determine if a mattress is orthopedic or not. So, this article is written to reflect our opinion about what should be classified as orthopedic or what is healthy for your dog in the long-term.

The Merriam-Webster dictionary definition of orthopedic is “marked by or affected with a skeletal deformity, disorder, or injury” and the Answers.com website definition is “The branch of medicine that deals with the prevention or correction of injuries or disorders of the skeletal system and associated muscles, joints, and ligaments.” We rather prefer to stick with the Answers.com definition and believe that the DoggySnooze dog bed is best suitable for prevention. I am not sure if any dog bed can be used for therapeutic or orthopedic correction. The definition on Wikipedia for an orthopedic mattress is a mattress designed to give extra back support. Having a number of definitions together we can see if the DoggySnooze can be classified as orthopedic, but we also need to look at whether this bed is right (in other words, healthy) for your dog.

We designed the DoggySnooze dog bed with the health of your best companion first and foremost in mind without looking up classifications or standards (as determined earlier which do not exist), but rather by using the input of experienced and renowned veterinarians.

Let’s first take a look at the different elements of the bed of what we have and have not yet described. We do not believe in cute, soft looking cushions. They look extremely comfy and they are certainly fun to lay on for a short while, but being used as a bed to sleep on? Imagine yourself sleeping for a night on the couch. You likely wake up feeling tired with back pain. Have you ever slept on those extremely stiff mattresses? Some hotels in China still have them. They are very uncomfortable when you first lay down on them, but you wake up well-rested without back pain. Have you ever slept on a Tempur-Pedic mattress? They are very comfortable and the top layer forms itself to the shape of the body. With the DoggySnooze we designed something in the middle. A bed layer that is somewhat stiff (the stiffness is adjustable) and the layer forms itself to the body.

But, as we use a Cordura nylon fabric layer, it has more features that allow it to be classified as an orthopedic dog bed. The nylon fabric will adjust itself to the body temperature of the dog. There are heated dog beds on the market that are comparable to the heated seats in your car. For some it is comfortable, but if you sleep your life always using an electric heating blanket you disable your body’s heating system. Assuming that you don’t expose your dog to a freezing temperature sleeping environment we do not see any value in heated dog beds, but this is just our opinion. A heated dog bed can temporarily work for an injured dog, but most dogs can be found on the floor next to the heated dog bed to cool off.

The Cordura nylon fabric layer not only aids to adjust to the body temperature, the breathable feature of the bed releases body odor, so it doesn’t get sweaty. Another benefit of avoiding sweat or body odor accumulation is that the bed won’t smell so badly.So, the question is whether the stiff, adjustable nylon fabric layer in an elevated position would make it orthopedic. It partially does, but we believe there are more factors to it. There are other beds on the market with an elevated Cordura fabric layer who classify themselves as orthopedic, while most dog beds classified as orthopedic are made out of a layer of memory foam. Does the elevated Cordura nylon layer win over the memory foam to be classified as orthopedic? As designers of the DoggySnooze dog bed, we believe that being truly orthopedic is a combination of factors and we have tried to incorporate them into the design. However we choose the elevated nylon Cordura layer over the memory foam for the aforementioned mentioned reasons. A memory foam layer would work better for humans as we are build with broader shoulders, but we believe that the nylon fabric layer fits a dog’s body given a dog’s various resting and sleeping positions.

What are the other factors contributing to a very orthopedic dog bed? The unique stiffness control system is one of them. If you have a heavy dog with sore muscles, lower the level of stiffness of the layer. If you have a young puppy that needs a good rest at night, let it sleep on a stiff bed layer. Well, it might have too much energy the next morning, but at least you know that in the long-term, it might be saved or delayed from the crippling hip dysplasia that affects so many dogs.

Another feature contributing to the bed’s orthopedic benefits is the bolsters. We use very dense foam, so it works for the back and the head. A dog likes to feel back support (which wasn’t in the Wikipedia definition of orthopedic, in regards to back support) while taking a “deep” nap. The side supports functions wonderfully as a head cushion, and if your dog likes to stretch out, remove the side supports. At the very least the bolster supports contribute to the orthopedic function.

To summarize this lengthy analysis the “elevated stiffness controlled breathable nylon fabric layer” in combination with the bolster supports make the DoggySnooze dog bed a truly orthopedic dog bed.

Elevated snoozeSofa by DoggySnooze

Super Bowl Sunday – Good and Bad ‘Human’ Foods for Your Dog

Feed Fido this, not that!

We at Dutch Dog Design are ready to cheer for our favorite team, with our doggy pals on Sunday. Are you?

Super Bowl XLVI is upon us and for many dog owners, friends will be swarming the mancave on Sunday for a raucous, football-filled afternoon. A staple for many for Sunday afternoon football watching is tasty comfort foods. Foods and drinks such as pizza, nachos, vegetables, chips and dips and beer and alcohol will surely abound in many homes. In order to keep our dog pals safe from getting sick this weekend, it’s crucial to know what food bits and table scraps your dog can eat and what it absolutely should not eat.

Snacks in hand, dog enjoying the game from a doggySnooze, let’s read on.

FOODS AND BEVERAGES TO AVOID:

Aguacate / Avocado

AVOCADOS: Eating nachos during the game? Don’t let your dog gobble up the excess that you might drop on the floor due to your excitement over a key play. Avocados, which may be found on your nachos or used in a dip, contain a substance called persin, which can be toxic to a dog, especially if ingested in large amounts. Persin can cause diarrhea and vomiting and damage the heart, lungs, and other tissues. So, don’t let your dog clean your plate and definitely not the added plates of your friends, either.

ONIONS, GARLIC: These savory seasonings, in forms including raw, powdered, cooked, or dehydrated, can be terrible to a dog’s health. Ingesting onions or garlic can destroy a dog’s red blood cells which can lead to anemia. In the case of ingesting too much garlic or onions, symptoms of anemia to look out for include the following: weakness, vomiting, difficulty  breathing and little interest in food. No sharing garlic fries with your dog!

Small bowl of mixed nuts displaying large nuts...

NUTS: Another popular football snack for many fans is a bowl of mixed nuts. For dogs, eating walnuts and macadamia nuts in particular (or any foods containing these nuts) can be especially toxic. Effects of eating these nuts include muscle tremors, paralysis of the hindquarters, vomiting, diarrhea, rapid heart beat and elevated body temperature. Eating chocolate and nuts together is even more dangerous as this compounds the earlier effects and can also lead to kidney failure. No cookies from the cookie jar for your pooch.

Burger Brezel

 SALT AND SALTY SNACKS: Excessive salt consumption can have similar effects on dogs as it does on humans. Eating too much salt, in dogs, like in humans, can lead to excessive thirst, urination and thus, dehydration. Sodium intake can also lead to sodium ion poisoning. Be sure to watch for signs of vomiting. diarrhea, tremors and elevated body temperature if you dog has  chewed on too much of your cheesy soft pretzel or lapped up stray potato chips.

TABLE SCRAPS, FAT TRIMMINGS AND BONES: Now it’s time to really get into the game, and the food. Once you’ve finished off those spicy wings or that steak, don’t pass on the excess scraps and bones to your dog. Excess fats trimmed from meats or still attached to the bone can cause pancreatitis in dogs. Another concern with dogs chewing on bones is that a dog can easily choke on a bone or the bone can splinter and lead to obstructions in your dog’s digestive system.

SWEETS AND SUGARY FOODS AND DRINKS: The victory is yours! More football-themed cake for you. Sharing sugary foods, soda and sweets with your dog is a bad idea, though. Just like in humans, eating too many sugary sweets can lead to obesity, diabetes and dental problems.

English: A refrigerated beer display at a Whol...

 BEER: No football game experience is complete without a cold, frosty beer for most fans. While most people will enjoy drinking a cold brew this weekend, beer, and any alcohol in general, is definitely a big no-no for dogs. Alcoholic beverages can have the same effects on dogs as they do on humans, negatively affecting the brain and liver. Given a dog’s smaller size, the harmful effects are more pronounced. Even if only a small amount of beer is ingested, it can cause vomiting, diarrhea, difficulty breathing and lead to brain and liver damage in dogs. No trading drinks with your dog!

If you experience any pet-related emergencies this weekend, it is best to contact your local vet, emergency clinic or the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center at (888) 426-4435 to get help.

On the other hand, the good news is that if you enjoy a healthy diet, your dog can enjoy it with you. Below are some foods that both you and your dog can enjoy, together. Please do note, we don’t advocate that we are foods specialists or that these foods can or should make up the entirety of your dog’s diet, but they are healthy treats for your pet.

FOODS TO ENJOY:

Yasuda yogurt 150ml

YOGURT: Yogurt is beneficial for both humans and dogs. It serves as a good source of calcium and protein. For added benefit, look to get yogurt with probiotic elements and have  no sugars or artificial sweeteners. If your pup is a bit pudgy, try to pick a fat-free yogurt to share.

Carrots on display at local greengrocer

VEGETABLES: A staple of human diets, certain vegetables can be very beneficial to dogs as well. Veggies which your dog is free to munch on include the following: cucumber and zucchini slices, carrot sticks, and green beans.

Seedless watermelon Purchased Feb. 2005 in Atl...

FRUITS: Nature’s candy! Certain naturally sweet, juicy treats your dog can enjoy include crunchy apple pieces, and banana, orange and watermelon slices. Just be sure to remove any seeds from fruits containing them before giving the fruit to your dog. Those extra bits are no good.

Now, is your dog tired from all of the excitement surrounding the game and ready to hit the hay? Your pal can always now take a nap on the DoggySnooze dog bed.

Or, are you and your pooched so amped up over your team’s sweet victory that you want to get outside and celebrate? Continue your healthy practices by going out for a walk or a bike ride together. Take your dog along for the celebration in a DoggyRide bike trailer or stroller.

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Image by PoshMoggy via Flickr

Many thanks go out to WebMD, TODAY and Modern Dog Magazine for serving as great sources of information on this topic.

Feel free to learn more about this topic via WebMD’s slideshow on Foods Your Dog Should Never Eat, TODAY’s article entitled, “‘People Foods’ That Can Kill Your Pet” and Modern Dog Magazine’s article, “10 “People” Foods for Dogs.”

Go Team!