Traildogtreats's Blog

Dogs and Treats

To Fly or Not to Fly Fido? January 17, 2011

Filed under: Dogs,Family,Travel — Trail Dog Treats @ 6:24 pm
Now that the holidays are over and New Years has come and gone, it’s easy to get into a post-holiday slump. What a better way to beat the winter blues that planning a trip? If you’re like many dog owners who can’t imagine the idea of going on a trip without their best friend, you’ll need to take the proper steps to ensure that your dog is happy and safe while traveling to your get-a-way destination. 

It’s fairly easy to pack the car and make your dog comfortable for a road trip, but if your vacation spot requires air travel, there are many things to think about when preparing your dog for flight. Before you booking your flight, you’ll need to find out whether or not the airline will allow your pet on the aircraft. While some airlines will allow dogs in the cabin, others will only allow them in the cargo area, or don’t transport animals at all. If you cannot find an airline that will transport your dog, contact a professional pet transporter. These companies meet all the regulations for transporting pets in the air and are extremely knowledgeable. Using a professional pet transporter will be more expensive than flying commercial but will provide you with peace of mind.

                           

In 1995, I flew my large 4 year old Black Lab, Boris from Denver to Hartford to visit my family for the holidays. He flew in the cargo area, and all in all it was a very positive experience because I was very well prepared for the journey. Following are some beneficial tips I’d like to share:

  • Acclimate your dog to his crate or pet carrier well before the flight.
  • Call the airline several times prior to your flight to ensure that a spot has been reserved for your dog.
  • Fly direct whenever possible. If you can’t fly direct, schedule as few stops as possible to reduce your dog’s stress level.
  • Be sure to have your dog’s collar on him. The collar should have a tag that clearly shows his name and your contact information, including a phone number at which you can be reached.
  • Provide ample food and water into two bowls attached to the kennel. Provide the staff with feeding instructions and food and also post feeding instructions to the carrier.
  • Keep your dog secure in the cargo area by placing him in a hard-sided, airline-approved dog carrier that is clearly marked with your contact information/your vet’s contact info, live animal stickers, arrows that show the upright position, and the dog’s name. By clearly posting the dog’s name, people handling him will be more apt to talk to your dog.

  • Do not board the airplane until you know your dog has been loaded. Have the flight attendant verify that your dog is on board. Likewise, do not leave the plane until you know your dog has been unloaded. As soon as you know he is off the plane, immediately proceed to baggage claim to retrieve him.
  • Do not transport your dog in a cargo area that is not climate-controlled. Uncontrolled cargo areas can experience temperature extremes, putting your dog at risk.

If you’re contemplating sedation and tranquilizers, there are a few things to consider. Some people think using a sedative or tranquilizer prior to travel will calm a dog and make him less stressed. Fortunately, this was the case with Boris. He did well on the tranquilizers that the Vet prescribed, mostly because he had experience taking them in the past. Boris was terrified of thunder & lightening, and needed tranquilizers to get through a stormy night. I was confident that he would be okay taking the same pills to overcome any anxiety or stress while traveling in the cargo area of the plane. However, many experts believe that these medications can be dangerous, as they interfere with your pet’s ability to balance, increasing his risk of injury when his carrier is moved. Also, air travel requires increases in altitude, which can cause respiratory and cardiovascular problems in medicated dogs. Always talk to your vet before giving your dog any medication prior to air travel.

If you prepare carefully and everything goes as planned, you and your dog will fly the friendly sky’s with ease, realizing it was all worth it when arriving at your final vacation destination! Enjoy!

 

 

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A Year in Dog Treats December 31, 2010

Filed under: All Natural,Dog Biscuits,Dog Snacks,Dogs,Healthy,Treats — Trail Dog Treats @ 10:46 pm

 

2010 was a year of experimentation for Trail Dog Treats. We experienced the ups and downs of starting up a small business, worked our way through the red tape to become legit, researched dog food trends & ingredients, and baked endless batches of treats to create a great brand.

As we look back on our year in dog treats, we see common industry trends that have influenced Trail Dog Treats product development. Trends including the development of natural dog food and emphasis on the use of human-grade ingredients; ingredients focused on the well-being of the whole animal and not just the individual parts.

There is an obvious trend of pet humanization amongst dog owners, often calling themselves parents and treating their canine companion as little humans with fur. Treating dogs as children, pet owners have become more health conscious, scrutinizing their pet’s diets. Many are turning to naturally made food and biscuits for their dogs. Despite the higher cost of all-natural, specialty treats compared to commercially produced biscuits, people are willing to spend the extra money. With the support of these health conscious pet owners, product development will only continue to improve. In 2011 we’ll continue to find more wheat-free, gluten-free, all natural and organic pet food options for our dogs. It’s this revolution in dog food/treat products that is to believed to increase the life span of dogs. Statistics show that within the past 15 years, dogs live an average of 3 years longer. This is great news for all of us doggie moms and dads! 
                                                        

 

 

‘Tis The Season To Celebrate December 15, 2010

The elves are hard at work in the tree house this month preparing treats for all the good boy & girl pups. ‘Tis the season for giving Trail Dog Treats! ‘Tis also the season to celebrate one particularly special birthday — my trail dog!

8 years old on December 8th! HAPPY BIRTHDAY TATUM! Her big day was a hit, with an early morning walk & scrambled eggs for breakfast, followed by an afternoon trip to her favorite dog park, snacking on TDT trail mix along the way, home to open her gifts, then ending the evening with pumpkin cupcakes and a Bowser Beer. It doesn’t get much better than that! I’m pretty sure this is the reason why people say they’d like to come back as my dog someday.

       
With the birthday a big success, it’s time to concentrate on the holidays. We’re baking up chicken flavored candy cane sticks, fresh Trail Dog Treats in every flavor, and stuffing stockings for every furry friend on your list. Now offering TDT stockings for just $10/each.  Stockings include 1 med size variety treat pack, 1 small bag of trail mix, 1 Kong tennis ball, & 1 candy cane stick. To order, please email nancy@traildogtreats.com.

HAPPY HOLIDAYS!

 

Giving Thanks November 25, 2010

Tatum’s Top 10 List of Things She’s Thankful For:

10. Warm dog beds and baskets full of toys
9. Mom’s new career — taking on the role as head taste tester
8. Mountain Trails
7. Snow
6. Lakes, Rivers, Reservoirs, puddles… you get the point!
5. Squirrels — nothing better to chase!
4. Summer Farmer’s Market
3. Free Angus Beef samples from the famer’s market beef vendor
2. Play dates with great friends

…and the #1 thing that Tatum is most thankful for…

1. Unconditional love and endless attention from her mom!

 

Doggie Tricks for Tasty Treats October 24, 2010

Filed under: dog costume,Dogs,Healthy,Nutritious,pet parade,Pumpkin,Treats — Trail Dog Treats @ 10:19 pm

  Trick or Treat!  Halloween week is a great time to focus on product development in the Trail Dog Treats kitchen.  This season’s flavor of choice…  pumpkin.  Not only are these large squash tasty and nutritious, but a great source of beta carotene.  Pumpkin is also packed with potassium and high in fiber to help with doggie digestive systems. 

Nutritional facts (8 oz of cooked pumpkin):
49 calories
2 grams protein
12 grams carbohydrates
37 mg calcium
74 mg phosphorus
2 mg iron
265 RE vitamin A
12 mg vitamin C
*And a variety of essential minerals

Our creation is a pumpkin brownie bite, sure to please any furry ghost or goblin.  Soft and chewy!  Yum!

                                

If you’re looking for a great healthy treat for your dog this Halloween night, but don’t want to mess around with baking your own pumpkin treats, just follow this simple technique…  as your carving your artistic creation, scoop out the insides of the squash and set aside in a bowl (be sure to remove the seeds).  Store bought canned pumpkin is okay too.  Heat up on the stove top to cook thoroughly and throw a couple of Tablespoons in his/her dinner.  You’ve got a festive Halloween meal custom-made for Fido!  Of course it’s best for dogs to earn their treats this time of year, by dressing up and performing their favorite tricks!

          

                               

Boo!

 

Change of the Seasons September 21, 2010

Summertime fun is coming to an end, but the memories of a great hiking season remain on our minds. Tatum and I ventured through the Rocky Mountains all summer long, discovering new trails, testing our endurance, and enjoying the natural beauty of the lakes and wildflowers all along the way.

 

        

Now the air is crisp, the trees are changing color, and the days are getting shorter. Fall is here and it’s just as beautiful as always. When the seasons change, so do our outdoor adventures. With less hours of sunlight in each day, our weekly hiking, running and trail destinations will often bring us closer to home. Some may call it a “backdoor adventure”; outdoor adventures that you and your dog can enjoy before/after work, on the weekends, or even during your lunch hour.
To integrate backdoor adventures into your fall fitness routine, take a look around your neighborhood… make note of easy to access bike paths, city parks, dog parks, lakes, and trails around you. One of the great perks of a backdoor adventure is packing light — no need for a car full of gear. Just throw on your shoes and go!

           

If given the choice of activities, Tatum will always choose a long distance trip to the mountains for a day long hike, but when we’re limited with time she’s just as happy taking in the sites in and around Denver… a stroll along the Platte River, playing catch at the city dog park, and running along the trails in the foothills. She also makes a great ball girl on the tennis courts!                                                     
There are many options for you and your dog to stay fit and active this fall season, so grab your dog and get outside!

 

Dining Out With Your Dog July 27, 2010

Filed under: dining,dog food,dog friendly,Dogs,Family,Travel — Trail Dog Treats @ 12:12 am

No need to leave Fido home while you dine out.  A dog’s gotta eat too! And no matter where you’re headed, there seem to be more and more options for you and your dog to eat out together.  Whether your looking for a great sidewalk cafe, brew pub, coffee shop, or other eatery that will welcome Fido to join you at an outdoor table, This is the day and age for pet friendly dining! 

In order to make your excursion as relaxing as possible for all concerned – you, your dog, your dining companions, other diners and cafe owners, here are some tips to make your experience a positive one…

  • Take your dog out for a good walk before going to the cafe – not only will this give him the opportunity to empty his bladder, the exercise get rid of any excess energy
  • Unless your dog is an old hand at going to cafes, expect him to get bored relatively quickly – book in for a quick lunch or a coffee and a snack rather than a meal that could last a couple of hours;
  • If you are going to a cafe you haven’t been to before, phone ahead and make sure they are happy to have your dog dining with you
  • Ask for a table that’s at the edge of the dining area – this will be quieter for your dog and he’s less likely to be in the way of waiting staff and /or get his tail or paw trodden on by accident;
  • When you arrive at the cafe walk directly to your table, without stopping to let your dog sniff and greet the other diners, and get him to sit under the table.
  • Bring some supplies with you for your dog – a water bowl, water, favorite toy (one that doesn’t squeak) and/or a tasty treat. Give these to him before you start eating your meal;
  • Do not let your dog sit on a chair, sit on your lap during the meal, or feed your dog from your plate – other diners won’t appreciate this behavior
  • Discourage people from coming up and making a fuss of your dog – this may cause a disturbance to other diners, but if your dog is in a confined space under the table he may feel threatened by people bending under the table to pat him and could easily nip someone’s hand
  • If your dog gets unsettled and starts to be a nuisance, pay your bill and leave immediately
  • If you make it to the end of the meal, be generous with your tipping!                 
                                                          
        

Tatum and I are lucky to live in a very dog friendly city, enjoying meals together at many local cafes, bars, and restaurants in Denver.  To research dog friendly dining in your area, check out http://www.bringfido.com/restaurant/region/united_states/

Bone appetit!