Taylor’s Social Media Schenanigans: A Hamburger and a Selfie

Hello, Friends!  I hope everyone who is reading this is happy, healthy, and enjoying their Monday!

Well, speaking of Monday…today is Mischief Monday within the pet blogging community, and I thought it would be fitting to share with all of Taylor’s buddies some of her Scottie antics that I was lucky enough to capture and post onto Instagram…& Facebook…& Twitter…& Google +…& Pack…& Pinterest!  Man, we’re everywhere, aren’t we?

So, last Sunday, I posted this picture that depicts a sudden realization of just how small of a pup Taylor really is!  Considering how big of a personality she has, her small stature is a fact I often overlook:

Instagram 1

Last Monday, Taylor had a one-on-one play session with her new hamburger toy that she received in her very first PawPack, which I will talk about in further detail in an upcoming post:

Instagram 2

Last Tuesday, Taylor helped me out with a shameless plug for Pack’s Scottish Terrier Newsletter for the week!  On top is one of Team Scottie’s fine fellas whom we featured in last week’s newsletter, Winston!  His mommy, Tanja, is a fabulous artist, and Winston serves as her muse for her designs that you can find in her Etsy store, Dear and Birch!  A sample of her work was featured in last week’s newsletter as well as on the bottom of this Instagram post:

Instagram 3

Last Wednesday, I posted a selfie…or, rather, an up-the-nose selfie:

Instagram 4

And, lastly, on Friday of last week, Taylor and I staged a literary protest against the outrageous California heat wave that we experienced that day…with the help of Dr. Seuss, of course!

Instagram 5

Taylor and family had a great time last week, and we are looking forward to more shenanigans in the next few days as we close out the month of July!

Are you and/or your pet on social media?  I’m pretty sure the answer is “yes”!  You are more than welcome to share where I and everyone else can find you on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc. in the comments below!

Hope you have a great rest of the day!

Monday MischiefThis week, Life Embarked is participating in the Monday Mischief Blog Hop, hosted by Snoopy, Alfie’s Blog, and My Brown Newfies!

Why a Variety of Fruits and Vegetables is Best for My Dog

Taylor and the carrot Taylor with one of her obsessions

Happy Saturday, Friends! Taylor and I hope that you are having a great start to your weekend!
So, today, let’s talk about food…dog food, that is!  Specifically, fruits and veggies!
During a recent visit with Taylor’s holistic vet, Dr. S., she recommended that we put forth a better effort in giving Taylor more of a variety of fruits and vegetables.  She informed us that this will guard against nutritional deficiencies or food sensitivities that could result if a dog eats the same kind of foods, day in and day out.
Regrettably, before this appointment, Taylor’s fruit/veggie menu was only two lines long: bananas and carrots.

Our Tasty Quest for Change Begins:

We first ventured into the doggy farmer’s market territory by introducing apples to Taylor.  Unfortunately, apples do not seem to like Taylor’s tummy very much, so we scrapped that idea quickly.
Last week, we added celery onto her menu.  Unlike apples, Taylor’s tummy and the celery have developed a good friendship, though it does take Taylor a few sniffs and stare-downs with the celery before she chomps away.
Lastly, two days ago, Taylor tried lettuce for the first time, and she loved it!  According to PetGuide.com, lettuce is a water-dense vegetable that is full of nutrients…though it is a veggie that a dog should not have a lot of, as it could cause diarrhea!  So, for Taylor, a few pieces every other day is best!
Below is a useful infographic about vegetables for dogs that I am planning to photocopy and keep on my refrigerator as Jeremy and I continue to add some tasty variety to Taylor’s palate!
veggies for dogs Next stop in our fruit and veggie train: blueberries!  I’ll let you know if Taylor takes to them quickly, like the lettuce…or will just tolerate them, like the celery!

What are your little one’s current fruit and veggie faves? I would love to hear your foodie recommendations in the comments below!
So…until next time, Friends! Hope you have a fantastic rest of the day!

Why Does My Dog Lift Her Front Paw?

Lifted paw
Even though I have lived in the dog parent world for almost 4 years, there is still a lot I need to learn about how canines speak to us and to other dogs. So, when I discovered this unique gem in doggy behavior, it made me wonder…

Why does Taylor lift her front paw?

I’ve seen Taylor lift her paw a few times during her walks whenever a squirrel or bird is in close proximity. This could possibly be due to her terrier instincts of tracking and hunting. Don’t let her princess-ness fool ya!
However, my curiosity peaked when I saw Taylor lift her paw while perched on her futon throne and watching her neighbors pass by. After some research, I’ve concluded that Taylor could be expressing submissiveness with that mid-air paw of hers!

According to Open Paw, a non-profit organization that helps new pet parents with training techniques, a lifted paw is an invitation to play, much like the play bow.  It could also be a sign of uncertainty.  Maybe Taylor noticed a new human walking by her window…oh, the nerve of that guy! 

It is very interesting to learn about all of Taylor’s quirks, which…I am finding out…are not quirks at all!  Evolution has definitely worked towards the canine’s advantage when it comes to communicating!

So, have you seen your dog lift his/her front paw?  If so, in what context have you seen this behavior…during walks?  During a playdate?  I would love to hear about it in the comments below!

Black and White Sunday

This week, Life Embarked is taking part in The Black and White Sunday Blog Hop, hosted by Sugar and Nola!

When a Dog Shows Her Teeth: The Submissive Grin

showing teeth 2Some might have already seen this crazy shot of Taylor showing her teeth in a previous post. Since sharing this picture back in March, I have always wondered what Taylor was really trying to tell me with her pirate smile!  Thankfully, the ASPCA had the answers!

The Submissive Grin
The ASPCA states that some dogs tend to show a submissive grin, where their lips are pulled up vertically as they show their front teeth.  It is often coupled with a lowered body as well as other signs of a submissive body posture, such as a lowered head and pinned back ears.  This is an indicator that the dog is happy and/or wants something from you…like playtime!

And, looking back, Taylor and I were in the middle of a playtime session (a game of fetch, to be exact) when the picture you see below was taken about a year ago:
showing teeth 3You might have already seen this picture in a previous post.  I can’t help it!  It’s one of my faves!

The submissive grin, according to PetPlace.com, seems to be an expression that dogs only show to humans…not other dogs!  Go figure!

Does your dog display his/her very own submissive grin?  If not (because this definitely is not an every dog occurrence), what does your dog do to show his/her submissiveness?  Please feel free to share in the comments below!

Black and White Sunday Today, Life Embarked is taking part in this week’s Black and White Sunday Blog Hop, hosted by Sugar and Nola!


Advise Request: What is Your Favorite Ball Play Alternative for Your Dog?

Happy Wednesday, fellow dog mommies and daddies!  Taylor and I just came home from an acupuncture session, and she was a star patient!  Of course, I would say that…I’m her mom!  But she ended her session with half of her acupuncture needles still in their designated spots, so even an objective person would call that impressive…well, maybe!  Hopefully!  ;-)

Taylor after acupunture

June 18, 2014: Taylor, post-acupuncture

Since my last post about Taylor’s experience with acupuncture, her holistic veterinarian, Dr. Sur, has seen and felt an improvement in her back knees.  Because of this great news, we are now going every two months instead of every six weeks as a preventative measure so that her luxating patellas will not progress.

Dr. Sur did mention during our appointment today that it would be a good idea to decrease the amount of indoor ball play that Taylor partakes in on a daily basis.  Taylor, Jeremy, and I live in an apartment with hardwood floors, and even with area rugs, the sudden (and sometimes slippery) stops that come with ball play like catch and fetch can possibly aggravate Taylor’s knee…um…situation.

Now, one of the best rewards that come with being a dog blogger is learning from the best…my fellow dog parents!  So, I was wondering if I can get your advise: what would you recommend as a great alternative to indoor ball play?  Aside from catch and fetch, what have been your go-to games that make your dog smile that involve some kind of physical activity?  Have you tried hide and seek with your little one?  How about dog dancing?  I have been wracking my brain since leaving Taylor’s veterinary clinic for ideas, and I am coming up short!

Any kind of first hand advise from my fellow dog parents would be oh-so-greatly appreciated!

And I will make sure to include your ideas (with links to your blogs) in my upcoming Thoughtless Thursday posts!

Thank you so much, Friends!  Taylor and I hope you have an awesome Wednesday evening!

BP_Wordless_wed_Hop_Logo_2014Today, Life Embarked is taking part in the Wordless Wednesday Blog Hop, hosted by BlogPaws!




Two Outstanding Dog Dad Blogs for Father’s Day!

Good Morning, Friends! Taylor and I hope everyone had a wonderful Father’s Day yesterday!

Now, in a vast sea of female dog bloggers, I have stumbled across two amazing blogs that I have grown to love that are written by…wait for it…MEN!! So, in an effort to extend Father’s Day by just a few more hours, I would like to spread the word about two awesome dog dads who blog, and the dogs who love them:

Blog #1: Marking Our Territory

Marking Our Territory 1Photo of Penny (L) and Eko courtesy of Marking Our Territory

I have been a huge fan of Marking Our Territory since becoming a blogger myself about two years ago. It tells the tale of a young adventure-seeker named Will and his handsome sidekick, Eko, a Rhodesian Ridgeback. Recently, they welcomed a teeny tiny little one into the family, another adorable Rhodesian Ridgeback named Penny. Needless to say, she will not be teeny tiny for very long!

Marking Our Territory 2Photo of Eko, Penny, and Will courtesy of Marking Our Territory

Marking Our Territory is a blog that celebrates dog parenthood…the good, the bad, and the freakin’ hilarious!

All of Will’s posts are heartwarming, charming, and very funny! His videos of his fur kids will give you perma-grins! Please check out this blog as soon as you can!

Blog #2: Gnawing the Bone

Raud and buddies Photo of Willie, Raud, and Sadie courtesy of Raud’s dog training blog, Kennedy Dog School

Gnawing the Bone is a unique blog from writer and dog trainer, Raud Kennedy, that combines amazing dog-centric fiction with stunning photography and dog training tips! Raud has a very witty and intelligent sense of humor that comes across in his writing, especially in his fiction that often centers around his own dogs, Willie (a German Shepherd), Sadie (a Golden Retriever), and Fleegle (a Chocolate Lab):

Still unable to sleep, I listen to Fleegle snore. He sounds like a train struggling up a steep grade with a freight load of fat Labradors. I nudge him with my foot under the covers. “Straighten out your neck and maybe that freight you’re pulling won’t be so heavy.”

“The circadian rhythm of my snores not lulling you to sleep? I’m out like a light when you snore,” Fleegle says sleepily. “I love pizza, but I love it even more because it makes you snore and I know exactly where you are without even looking.”

- an excerpt from Gnawing the Bone’s Negotiating with Cookies #6 – Flies and Opossums

Gnawing the Bone Photo of Fleegle courtesy of Gnawing the Bone

If you are looking for a one-of-a-kind blog to add to your Follow list, I highly recommend Gnawing the Bone! If I can one day possess half the writing chops that Raud currently holds, I will be a happy camper!

I am proud to be a pet blogger alongside these two amazing writers and dog dads! Happy (Belated) Father’s Day to Will, Raud, and to all of our outstanding dog dads that make this canine-loving world a better place!




Taylor Says: GET MORE SLEEP!!

Sleepy Taylor

What a beautiful thing sleep is! It is something that I never really appreciated until I became a full-grown, responsibility-driven adult! As kids, sleep was absolutely the last thing we wanted to think about!  Now, as our days slowly but surely become overloaded with work, bosses, deadlines, bills, and chores, sleep has become somewhat of a rare commodity.  Add parenthood into the mix, and sleep turns into a treasure that you need a map to find!
Now, as a parent of a canine, I have come to observe the mind-set of a dog when it comes to sleep. A dog seems to understand how much of a necessity sleep really is and doesn’t let anything stand in his/her way from getting some!  Of course, if there is a whole lot of fun in close proximity (i.e. a visitor, a trip to Grandma and Grandpa’s house, or Daddy coming home early from work), he/she will pick up that lovely thing called sleep and set it aside…for awhile!  I can recall doing the same thing as a kid…we all remember those nights when we snuck out of our rooms like stealthy superheroes so we could watch The Tonight Show with our parents…from a distance, of course!
For the most part, when Taylor realizes that sleep is beckoning, she stops whatever she is doing so her nap time could commence. And I envy her for that!  But who’s to say that I am not allowed to do that as well?  What’s the harm in taking a break from my responsibilities for a brief moment so I can recharge?  It’s not like my work will disappear while my eyes are closed, right? Though…that might actually be a good thing!  Wait…did I just say that out loud?  ;-)
I am always learning from Miss Taylor the importance of not letting others dictate how and when to take care of myself, and sleep is no exception!  So, if you ever find Taylor asleep in her cave bed or on her cool pad, you might just find me napping right next to her!

Black and White Sunday This week, Life Embarked is taking part in this week’s Black and White Sunday Blog Hop, hosted by Sugar, the Golden Retriever and Dachshund Nola.