Friday, August 31, 2018

Almost Homemade #Chewy Influencer

It's been a difficult month here at Porty Land.  Losing a pack member has an effect on each member of the household. Her sisters knew Bailey was sick but they each stop before her crate every morning looking for her. It's heartbreaking for me to see them look for her. Lola was especially close with Bailey and seems especially lost. Tess has stepped up and sleeps in Lola's crate with her each night to get her thru this change.
They all need a little extra attention now and Chewy has helped by offering an interesting food that was new to me. This is Sojos Mix-A-Meal.
This is a dry mix meant to be combined with a protein of your choice and water. The ingredients listed are sweet potatoes, carrots, apples, whole egg, cranberries, flaxseed, kelp and vitamins and minerals. The package states right on the front that it's made in Minnesota with globally sourced ingredients. It also states "nothing from China".

I chopped up some turkey breast.....
added the Sojos mix........
added water and waited.

About 15 minutes later we had a thick meaty dog food that looked and smelled good. The first thing I noticed were the whole cranberries. Often in dog food the label states an ingredient but all you see is a bit of color that you assume is the berry or carrot or whatever. In this food you can actually see  and recognize the ingredients. It looks like something you might cook up in your own kitchen from ingredients in your refrigerator.
So it looks good, but how does it taste? Well the room was absolutely quiet while everyone ate. They each licked their own bowl clean, then checked each others bowls for leftovers. There were no leftovers.

This food was a big hit with my dogs and we highly recommend it.

Chewy sent us a bag of Sojos Mix-A-Meal at no cost to us in exchange for our honest opinion.

Sunday, August 26, 2018

Dr Lyon To The Rescue #Chewy Influencer

A few months ago our friends at Chewy sent us a probiotic  by Dr Lyon.  Until that time I hadn't heard of the company but we've been using a probiotic ever since our crypto catastrophe. We had been using ForteFlora for several years and liked it. We decided to try Dy Lyon's probiotic and were very happily surprised. It worked even better for us than the one we were using and it cost less. Win-win!

Earlier this month we received a surprise package from Chewy containing two other products from the Dr Lyon line. Because of our success with the probiotic, we were more than ready to try them. First was Dr Lyon's Skin and Coat Support Soft Chews.
 These are basically an omega supplement and we highly approve of omega supplements. The first two ingredients are salmon oil and Brewers yeast, both of which my dogs take daily.

This summer I have two dogs, Norma Jean and Sebastian that are extremely itchy. They are both just itchy dogs normally, but this summer their allergies have exploded and the itching is out of control. We've tried almost everything short of steroids, so I decided to give these soft chews to the two of them.
They think they're special treats and and seem to love the taste. Have they helped? I don't know yet. They aren't specifically designed for allergies but I'm hoping that by conditioning their skin, they may help stop the itching. We'll see. They certainly aren't doing any harm and I think in Sebastian's case they may be helping a little.
The second product in our surprise package was something that pleased me a lot. It's Dr Lyon's Liver Support Soft Chews.
 These little funky smelling chews contain some good stuff like silymarin from milk thistle and tumeric. Again these are things my dogs take daily for liver health. Two of my girls, Lola and Tess, have had higher than normal liver values on some of their blood tests so they are the ones I chose to test out this product. They love them, probably because of the cheese flavor.
 Because my dogs take  silymarin and tumeric daily anyway, it's hard to tell if these chews are having any significant effect, but I think they're just more of a good thing.
I thank Chewy for sending these helpful products to us for my dogs to try. My dogs thank Chewy because they taste good and maybe make them feel better at the same time.

Chewy sent us these Dr Lyon products at no cost to us in exchange for our honest review.

Wednesday, August 22, 2018

Bailey, My Wild Child

She was the fifth puppy, born at 2:17AM and weighed 8 ounces. She was all black with a few white hairs on her chest and a milk chin. It didn't take long for me to realize that she was different from the others.
When she was seven days old, her eyes weren't open yet, she decided to leave the whelping box and go exploring. She managed to get both front legs up on the rail of the box but wasn't strong enough to push herself over the top. When her eyes opened on day ten, she did it. I found her crawling around the room exploring the big world. After putting her back in the box three times that day, we built the walls up higher.
When the pups were four weeks old we moved them to a pen in the kitchen. There was a three foot wire enclosure to contain them. Bailey could climb out of that pen before I could cross the room. When she was six months old I caught her half way up a ladder leaning against the fence in the yard. She was going to check out the world outside the yard.
She never liked water. When we turned on the hose the others came running but Bailey disappeared. We took her to the lake a few times but she preferred to stay on the boat and explore.

She caught a bird on the wing and brought me a live angry squirrel. She dug enormous holes. She loved her pack.

  She was smaller than her sisters and got beaten up a few times. One day they ran her into the fence, face first. We took her to the vet with the skin scraped off one side of her face and she spent a couple days there as they treated her scrapes and watched for infection. The sisterly abuse didn't change her sweet gentle temperament.

The girls slept in crates. Each had a couple blankets but Bailey's crate was stuffed full of her 'babies'. She loved her stuffed animals. Monkey was her first and her favorite, but she had dozens of others and loved them all.

Each morning I opened her crate first because she has to sort thru her babies to choose which one to bring with her and carry around all day. At bedtime if one was missing, she'd bark until I found it and it was safely back with her.
Bailey was tough and independent but sweet and loving. She was a hugger.
 She was special and I miss her terribly.

Thursday, August 16, 2018



 Legacy's Ebony Bay
October 26, 2006- August 16, 2018

I loved you your whole life
I'll miss you for the rest of mine

Monday, August 13, 2018

Fish For Breakfast # Chewy Influencer

It feels like the time for a Bailey update. We never expected to make it to August together and we've been spending lots of time with Bailey, saving up memories.
The tumor is growing and she's getting weaker, but she's still happy and still wants to be part of the pack. She stays either in her crate or in the big pen in the garage so that she doesn't have to deal with stairs. When I step into the room she slowly stands up and grabs a toy to carry around. She has three favorites; Rottie Pup,

Chris Moose

and Big Red Monkey. She alternates but for the past few days she's sticking with Monkey.
She goes outside with the other dogs and usually sits on the hill watching and sometimes barking. If she's feeling good, she wanders slowly around the yard.
She's had a good appetite but it's becoming more difficult for her to eat. The huge tumor is squeezing her internal organs so she can only eat about a third of a normal meal. She has to stop frequently and pant until she can eat some more. Sometimes she prefers to be spoonfed because bending isn't comfortable.

Bailey eats four or five small meals a day. Because she prefers it and because it's good for her, she eats a lot of fish. Chewy has made it easier for me to find quality fish kibble. This month we're using a favorite, Zignature Trout and Salmon Meal Limited Ingredient Formula Grain Free Dry Dog Food. We're big Zignature fans around here but this time it's all for Bailey.  At lunch I add a sardine chopped and mixed into the kibble.
Yesterday Bailey wasn't interested in dinner and refused her bedtime yogurt. That worried me. This morning she didn't want to get up and go outside with us. Then she refused to eat breakfast. I doubled her pain medication and let her rest for awhile. Then I mixed a sardine into her breakfast and she ate the whole thing. Next she went outside, carrying monkey with her. At lunch she showed more pep and ate well. The same at dinner time.
I suspect Bailey is getting ready to leave us. Although she's grown hair back on her chest legs and face, she looks tired and serious. She's been amazingly brave thru this whole illness and has given me strength to face the ending. We're taking it day by day and we have eleven years of loving memories to hold onto.
Chewy sent us this bag of Zignature Trout and Salmon food for Bailey at no cost to us in exchange for our honest review. Bailey looks forward to her fishy food and I want to thank the good folks at Chewy for offering us healthy fish choices for our girl. We've found some wonderful foods that were unknown to us before Chewy introduced us.