As we mentioned in our brief post last week, we’ve been on a bit of a hiatus as Gilligan’s humans (who happen to include your faithful author) have been away gettied married and going on honeymoon.
Gilligan spent some time with several excellent sitters, and we will bring you some glimpses into his time there in the lap of wiener luxury, but first…
A tale of Dog Loyalty from Bonnie Scotland
One tale from Edinburgh, Scotland that is sure to thrill you dog-lovers out there, is that of Greyfriars Bobby.
Bobby was a Skye Terrier who lived in the 19th century. Legend has it that when Bobby’s owner passed away, leaving him behind, he spent the rest of his 14 years of life sitting in front of his owner’s grave and guarding it. Locals who passed by the grave on their way to and from the nearby pub came to know and love Bobby, and they would feed him bits of food when they saw him.
Then one day, Bobby passed away peacefully by the side of his owner’s grave.
Eventually, this tavern was named after the renowned canine, and a statue erected in his honor.
Just a “wee bit” of Scottish lore for you today for Black and White Sunday! Stay tuned for many more stories of the adventures our hero Gilligan and his humans have been getting into.
Article contributed by guest blogger Vee Cecil Image courtesy of Matt Deavenport under creative commons license Attribution-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic The Authors at WagsAhoy.com have not tested any of the products recommended by the author; we cannot offer a personal endorsement of these products nor claim responsibility for the reader’s use of or satisfaction with them.
August 2014 was the hottest month ever recorded. So, while summer may feel like it’s starting to wind down, we can likely expect some hot weather throughout August. And that could mean trouble for our four-legged friends.
As this article on the dangers associated with hot weather points out, heat exhaustion is a very real threat for dogs. So, it’s important to help them cool off as temperatures soar.
If you plan to enjoy some time by the pool with your dog in these last weeks of summer, that’s certainly a great way to help your dog stay cool. But it means you’ll need to be extra cautious and protect your dog from possible pool-related dangers.
Here are a few pool time safety rules to keep in mind:
Don’t assume your dog can swim. Because we’re all so familiar with the “doggy paddle,” often we assume that all dogs can swim. PriorityPetHospital.com points out that that simply isn’t true. However, the article notes, if your dog does like being in the water, it’s important to immediately train them how to find the stairs, which is their only option for getting out of the pool. It suggests using a landmark—like a patio chair—to help them learn where the stairs are as you train.
Keep your pet away from pool chemicals. If you’re a pool owner, then you know the number of chemicals required to keep a pool safe for humans. This article provides a comprehensive list of those chemicals and gives a good idea of just how toxic they are. Be sure your pool chemicals are locked away so that your pet can’t get anywhere near them and clean up any spills or leaks immediately. And though a pool’s chemical levels should be safe for dogs, it’s still a good idea to be on the look out for any signs of irritation, such as red eyes or skin reactions.
Cool them off with these treats. Taking a dip in the pool will definitely help your pet stay cool, but they’ll need some extra help cooling off when they aren’t in the water. A frozen dog treat can do the trick. These tasty options, include chicken pops and frozen banana treats. They are especially great to whip out when you’re barbecuing by the pool. They make for an effective distraction so that your four-legged family members won’t be as attracted to “human” foods, especially those that can be dangerous for them such as corn cobs and bones.
Protect their feet. Your pet’s paws are very sensitive. As this article from Banfield Pet Hospital recommends, always check a surface yourself before allowing your dog to walk on it. Before entering the pool area, place your own bare foot on the surface for 10 seconds. Banfield notes that if the surface feels too hot for you then it is definitely too hot for your dog.
These last weeks of summer can be fun and refreshing for your dog—especially when you head to the pool. But if you do decide to let them take a dip, be sure you know how to keep them safe from common pool-related dangers.
Vee Cecil is passionate about wellness. She often studies the topic and shares her findings on her recently-launched blog. She is also a Kentucky-based wellness coach, personal trainer, and bootcamp instructor.
Yes, it has been some time since our last update here on WagsAhoy.com about the adventures of our fearless sausage pup, Gilligan. That doesn’t mean nothing has been going on, though… quite the contrary!
Since we last checked in with you, Gilligan’s parents have gotten hitched! That’s right: Gilly’s Mama and Papa have “made it official” and are now back in the U.S. from a lovely honeymoon in Europe.
Our wonderful Ween is unfortunately not comfortable enough around crowds to have participated in the wedding in person (“in dog?” No, dogs are people too, ok…), but he did attend in spirit by wearing his lovely tux bandana to match Papa’s groomsmen attire.
While they were away getting married, Gilligan stayed with 3 fabulous family friends and had an absolute blast! We are excited to tell you more about all the fun.
It wouldn’t be a proper wedding of Gilligan’s folks without dachshund themed drink coozies, table cards, and more!
They even got a couple of dachshund themed gifts, including this cute little card featuring a couple of German teckel “soulmates:”
Today we’re going to show you how we made Mother’s Day count, and how you can too, with an irresistibly adorable homemade pup-themed card!
Incidentally, this guide can be used for making similar homemade cards for any occasion, so even if you read this after Mother’s Day we hope you will take the opportunity to really make a loved one’s day, showing them how much you care by taking the time to craft a unique card such as this.
What you will need:
Durable paper (we used recycled paper shopping bag material, but feel free to use colored construction paper or anything else you like)
Tissue paper (again, we used recycled tissue paper to a neat effect; you can do what we did or just use standard tissue paper/ other soft paper of your choosing)
Cutting surface (matte board recommended; we used a piece of durable ply cardboard from a shipping box in this demo ONLY because a matte board was not handy)
“Card bling” (rhinestones, pieces of nature, glittery stuff, etc. – if this is your thing, go nuts!)
Glue (for your card bling)
Step 1: Prepare the Tissue Paper
If you’re using fresh construction paper, go ahead and skip this step, BUT we would highly recommend hanging on to tissue paper in the future so you can do this. It is good for the environment and achieves a nice effect.
Get your ironing board out, plug your iron in, and turn it on to the lowest setting (this is important because of how delicate the tissue paper is).
Then, carefully lay your tissue paper piece out flat on the ironing board, making sure to avoid quick movements that may result in a tear.
Gently iron the tissue paper, making sure not to go too slowly as you want to achieve a uniform “bake” across the sheet of paper.
When you are done, you will have a relatively flat piece of tissue paper, with mild (pretty) wrinkles throughout it. The particular purple tissue paper we used also reacted to the heat by turning more pinkish, which you can see in the photo below. It is possible that the heat will also affect the color pigment of your tissue paper, in which case it is important to make sure the iron is applied uniformly across the whole sheet (to avoid color inconsistencies).
Step 2: Cut the Card Body Paper
If you happen to use the type of paper we did, you’ll want to start by undoing the seams of the paper bag and laying it out flat, as below.
*Disclaimer: You will notice we did a lot of our cutting and folding right on the ironing board. A hard flat surface is recommended, so don’t be like us in this case!
One really happy thing about using a recycled paper grocery bag is that there are already folds along the bag! It turns out that these folds make for pretty good ready-to-go card borders!
We have the luxury in this case not to measure precisely, since we will not be using an envelope for the card (which would require us to fit the envelope’s dimensions). Deciding that the first three rectangular “sections” look like a pretty good size, we proceed to fold the paper over, achieving double thickness for a sturdy card stock (and in this case also hiding the designs on the reverse side of the original grocery bag!).
Once the paper is folded in half, we cut it so that we’re left with a double-thick piece that is roughly the size we want for our card, folded open. We say “roughly” because you will want to leave about an extra 1/4″ on each side to help smooth the edges.
Our piece looks like this:
Note that one side happens to have a crease through it that we would ideally want gone. If this happens in your case, you can try to flatten it out by hand, or use the iron again at a low setting. We also chose to make this side the exterior of the card, because it will be covered with tissue paper in the end and the crease will likely be covered, whereas the inside of the card will leave the paper exposed and we want that part as flat as possible.
Then, with the “interior” side of the card facing up, cut about 1/4″ off of each of the three exposed edges (the folded edge will not be exposed; no need to cut it), on the top-most layer of paper only. This will leave the layer below it about 1/4″ longer. Then, fold the bottom layer over the top layer (including the folded edge just for a consistent look) so that you have a neat 1/4″ border resembling the below:
Next, carefully fold this sheet in half to create the card crease, starting at the edge and working your way back toward the crease, and being careful to apply plenty of pressure at the edges to ensure that your 1/4″ folds remain in place.
Congratulations! Your card body is complete!
Step 3: Prepare a Stencil
You may have any number of traceable nicknacks or ready-to-go stencils to use. For our card, we created a new dachshund stencil, by simply drawing it on a scrap piece of grocery bag paper, then using an exacto knife to cut the stencil out. If you decide to make your own like we did, make sure to measure your card ahead of time to ensure you make a stencil that is the perfect size to fit within the card how you want it to.
Step 4: Set the Tissue Paper in Place
Place your card body open-face-up in the middle of an ironed sheet of tissue paper, as below:
Then, carefully cut around the edges of onlythe right side of the card (leaving the left to add the stencil to), leaving a good inch or so around each of the top, bottom, and right edges:
Then, fold the tissue paper over these three edges, and use very small pieces of scotch tape to pin them in place at the corners and near the seam (a little vertical “snip” of the tissue paper at the top and bottom near the seam will help you fold the top and bottom flaps over):
Next, we’re going to fold the lefthand flap of tissue paper over the card body, pulling it as taut as possible.
Decide where you want your stenciled image to appear, and lightly mark the center of the spot with a pencil.
Step 5: Add Your Stenciled Image
Cutting the stencil into the tissue paper is the most delicate part of the card-making process, so take your time and go slowly when drawing on and cutting the soft paper.
First, with the left side of the tissue paper “open” as below, line up your stencil where you want it to go, making sure that it is aligned in the reverse direction of how you want it to appear on the front of the card (since you’ll be flipping it over to the right when you’re done cutting):
Then, carefully trace your stencil onto the paper, holding the stencil as steady as possible, and taking care to draw very lightly so as not to damage the paper.
Once you’ve traced your stencil image onto the tissue paper, lay it on top of your cutting board (matte board, thick cardboard, etc.), making sure the paper is as flat as possible. Then, use your exacto knife to slowly cut the image out. Take deep breaths and move slowly (image of cutting not shown here because we were too busy concentrating)!
When we were done, we were left with the below cute cut-out.
Unfortunately, the dachshund image was a little too far to the right (which could have been avoided with more careful measuring)! We fixed this by folding the tissue paper towards the seam of the card body, to shift the dachshund image about a 1/4″ to the left, and create a neat little crease design element on the front of the card in the process.
Once satisfied with the placement of the cut-out on the face of the card, the next step is to trim the edges of the tissue paper, once again leaving an edge that you will fold over the edges of the card body and secure into place with bits of scotch tape, like we did with the other side before making the stencil.
You will want to ensure that the tissue paper fits relatively tightly onto the cover of the card body, to minimize any flaps and ensure your image is as clear as possible.
Step 6: Complete Your Card!
Once your card is fastened and together, take some time to press it tightly in place along the seams and creases, adding some extra strength to fasten it and help bind the bits of tape, etc.
To help flatten the card, we found that ironing it lightly was very effective, and gave the added touch of pressing the stencil cutout more firmly on the card body, eliminating any “flap” of the tissue paper and tightening the design. Be very careful if using this method to be gentle when running the iron over the stencil, so as not to damage any of the delicate edges. Our card became a little more pink from this step, so again be mindful of whether the iron affects the color of your tissue paper.
Now the only thing left to do is to add any additional “bling” you like, and most important of all: write a message on the inside telling Mom that you love her! We won’t tell you how to do these parts because that it all you!
We hope you enjoyed this DIY card-making lesson! If you have any questions about bits of the process we did not cover in detail, please leave a paw-ment below and we’ll be happy to answer!
It’s mid-April, and boy has a lot been going on for our hero Gilligan this past month!
Gilligan’s Mama just returned from an international trip to the Middle East and Southeast Asia, and he’s super glad to have her back!
Beyond that, after a painfully snowy, cold and wet winter, it is finally Spring! All of the snow has finally melted as of this week, and Gilligan is back to enjoying his favorite parks in all their glory (see what the park looked like before the thaw here).
The onset of Spring means another thing: motorcycles are back on the streets! While Gilligan’s Mama and Papa find the vehicles to be too dangerous and have refused his pleas to let him ride (even in a sidecar, sorry little guy), after a great day at the park he did get a chance to visit a friend’s garage and pose in the seat of this rad red Suzuki. Hopefully this will not become further fuel for Gilligan’s “bad boy” self image. 😉
Today, April 8th, is National Dog Fighting Awareness Day.
Just a few brief words about Gilligan on this day, then we’re going to share a couple of things you can do today as a pet parent to help the cause of raising awareness to end the practice of dog fighting.
Looks Can be Deceiving
As much as Gilligan is in many ways the little angel he appears to be, when it comes to meeting and greeting other dogs, he can be a bit of a terror. He often exhibits a fighting/ aggressive response to the anxiety of being introduced to a new dog.
If your dog exhibits aggressive behavior, make sure to always safeguard against potential incidents by using a muzzle (we use the following for Gilligan: Baskerville 5-Inch Rubber Ultra Muzzle, Size-1, Black). You may want to work with a behaviorist who can help with counter-training the aggressive behavior.
What You Can Do
The above aside, putting dogs in mortal danger by pitting them against one another for sport is just plain wrong! If you would like to take up the fight against dog fighting, here are a few things you can do:
Ask the Department of Justice to #GetTough on dog fighters by creating harsher sentencing guidelines. Simply fill this quick form out and let the the DOJ know that you support prosecution of this horrific form of cruelty: http://bit.ly/1HxeMSL
Download a #GetTough on dog fighting toolkit kit which includes a printable sign, Facebook & Twitter cover image, and digital shareables:http://www.aspca.org/GetTough
Visit the ASPCA’s Fight Cruelty section to find out more about the ASPCA’s work to end dog fighting. Read about recent dog fighting raids and rescues, as well as facts about pit bull cruelty and breed specific legislation: https://www.aspca.org/dogfighting
Take a photo of your dog with the digital poster you can print then share it on social media.
Disclosure: The link in this article that leads to information about a dog muzzle will lead to that muzzle’s product page on Amazon.com. The link itself is generated using the Amazon Affiliate program, which means that the author of this site will earn a small sales commission on any purchases of the item accessed through the link. Product reviews on WagsAhoy.com are always the honest opinion of the author.
This is a Blog Hop! A big thanks, as always, to BlogPaws for hosting Wordless Wednesday!
Powered by Linky Tools
Click here to enter your link and view this Linky Tools list…
Sharing is Caring! Like and Share Gilligan with Friends today!:
Today’s Wordless Wednesday’s theme is “Pets Gone Wild!” Since we won’t be doing a very good job of being “Wordless” today, we’ll at least do this theme justice by once again featuring perhaps the wildest photo of Gilligan ever taken, which we showed you in a post entitled Drink of Choice: Puptrón.
And now for our feature story. 🙂
The Thaw Continues
We’ve been celebrating the onset of the Spring thaw after what was a record-breaking blizzard season for us here in the Boston area. As the snow has gradually melted, we’ve been showing you that Gilligan has been able to gradually go for walkies again without being defeated by the cold and ice.
Now, we celebrate another baby step: getting back to the park!
You’ll notice we say “to the park,” and not “in the park.” That’s because the park itself, despite some significant thawing, is not yet accessible; only the walkways around the park have thawed sufficiently for us to navigate.
Today’s post will show that after the intense winter we had, the thawing of the park is a bit of a process, which we will compare to the slow awakening of a hibernating giant.
Compare our photo from the first frost, to this week’s photo of the same patch of pathway around the river:
The photo to the left shows another angle of the riverside area where Gilly was situated in the first photo.
In case it isn’t clear enough: Gilligan can’t even stand where he was standing in the first photo anymore!
And so we must be content to walk around the park, until it thaws sufficiently. For another enlightening comparison, let’s look at a photo we took of the basketball court area of the park when it was too wet to navigate a few months back (before the snow), as compared to the utterly snow-locked state of things this week:
We’ll leave you with one last (and certainly NOT least) photo showcasing how ridiculous the snow coverage at the park remains. Good luck trying to open the gate and get into the court for a round of tennis!