It’s Been Awhile!

It’s been awhile, but we have been over here rescuing all the neighborhood kittens!  Since we last checked in on the blog, Maple has taken in THREE more cats.  Yes, I said three.  It’s a long story, but we are now a crew of 6 fur babies.  One dog and 5 cats!  I’m not sure why we decided to really commit to the ‘M’ theme, but they are as follows:

Maple, Monster, Minga, Mario, Memphis, and Marshmallow Fluff.

Here are some pictures of Maple and her cats:

 

 

Automatic Cat Feeders

Minga loves food!  I mean, she really really loves food.  She used to wake me up every morning around 4am, begging me to feed her.  She would do anything to get my attention.  She would meow incessantly, bite me, paw at me…knock over lamps!  A friend suggested that I look at investing in some automatic pet feeders, and finally, I took her advice.

We purchased two Aspen Le Bistro Automatic Pet Feeders and I could not be happier!  Minga no longer wakes me up at 4am, but instead she patiently waits for the feeders to dispense her early morning snack.  I wish I had purchased these feeders years ago!  If you have a cat who insists on being fed at the crack of dawn, do yourself a favor, and get one of these feeders ASAP!!

You can set the feeders to dispense the amount of food you want, at whatever time you want. They come in 5lb or 10lb models and will dispense food in increments of a 1/4 cup, or as much as 3 cups!  You can also set the feeders to dispense food up to 3 times a day.

Minga and I are much happier thanks to Aspen’s Le Bistro Pet Feeders!!

Why Adopt A Shelter Pet?

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So, why should you adopt an animal from a shelter?  First of all, I would like to say that I totally understand the desire for a specific breed of dog or cat.  I absolutely love hairless cats. It’s true. I’m not saying that to be funny.  I am constantly sending pictures and videos of those cute, wrinkly, gremlin-like creatures to my friends, but for some reason, they don’t seem to appreciate the beauty of a hairless cat like I do. I’m also really into Abyssinian cats.  Have you heard of them?  Google it.  They are soooo cute! And don’t even get me started on the Cornish Rex!  As for dogs, I’m partial to the Border Collie. I also really love a Great Pyrenees and I secretly wish I had a teacup anything to carry around with me at all times.

But here’s why I won’t go to a breeder:

When you adopt a pet from a shelter, you are literally saving a life.  Even if you adopt from a no-kill shelter, you are making room for an animal who may have otherwise ended up in a high kill facility.  Then there is the whole supply and demand issue.  Every time a dog or cat is purchased from a breeder, the demand increases, more animals are bred for profit, and in turn, more animals die in shelters.  So please please please consider your local shelter when you decide you are ready to add a pet to your family.  Each year, the United States has to euthanize more than 2 million adoptable dogs and cats, due to overcrowding and overpopulation.

If you are looking for a pure bred dog, or a specific breed, please consider a rescue group. There are PLENTY of rescue groups who specialize in specific breeds.  You can find almost anything you are looking for!  There are rescues for Great Danes, for Huskies, for Great Pyrenees, for Dachshunds, for Border Collies…etc.  There is even an Abyssinian Cat Rescue group out there!

Adopting an animal from a shelter or a rescue group is a more humane and ethical choice.  If you have your heart set on a puppy or a kitten, don’t worry, there are plenty to choose from at your local shelter!  Need a hypo allergenic dog?  Don’t fret!  There’s a rescue for that!

If you are concerned about your future pet’s health, you are generally better off with a mixed breed.  Mixed breeds are often healthier than their pure bred counterparts.

But don’t just take it from me.  Check out The Humane Society of the United States‘ stance on the issue, as well as what Best Friends Animal Society has to say about the matter.  And if you need even more convincing, here are some pictures of my three adorable shelter babies!

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Cuddle Monster

Monster is my wild child.  He has endless amounts of energy.  He is constantly running, jumping, leaping and climbing.  He is about 12lbs soaking wet and starts wrestling matches with our 50lb dog.  He could be compared to the Tasmanian Devil, Sonic the Hedgehog, or the Roadrunner from Bugs Bunny.  He is an adorable, furry, ball of energy.  Sometimes he can take this never ending energy out on his little sister Minga, but most of the time, he is such a great cat!

In fact, when Monster isn’t busy tearing through the house at a high rate of speed, he is usually cuddling with his favorite human.  As wild as Monster is, he is also the most affectionate cat I have ever had.  Every single evening and every single morning, Monster can be found curled up against me, purring away.  It makes it quite difficult to find the motivation to get up for work in the mornings, when I have the world’s cutest snuggler, nuzzling into my neck.  Monster also has this really endearing quality that only a mother could love and appreciate.  He doesn’t seem to have the ability to swallow while he purrs.  This tends to result in a lot of drool along with the cuddling, but I’ll take it if it means having this adorable ball of fur next to me every morning.

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No More Shedding!

Let me start by saying that I absolutely LOVE having pets.  Maple, Monster and Minga are members of this family and nothing will ever change that.  However, I am a bit of a neat freak, and I absolutely HATE all the dog and cat hair that seems to endlessly appear in every crack and crevice of this home.  It doesn’t seem to matter how much I clean, I still catch a tumbleweed of dog fur rolling down the hall, as soon as I put the vacuum away.

I’m here to tell you that I think I have found the solution!!  During our many trips to the dog park, I have caught on to the fact that the huskies (Stryder, Alaska, Lola and Laika), as well as our German Shepherd friend Leader, seem to have it figured out.  They have something called a FURminator and I promise you, it will change your life.  I’m so excited about the FURminator!  I’m already starting a mental list of all the things I will be able to do with my free time, now that my life won’t be consumed by vacuuming and pet hair!

I can’t believe how effective the FURminator is.  I used it on Maple, as well as the cats, and after just one brushing session, they have silky soft fur and do not seem to be shedding.  The FURmintor won’t completely eliminate your need to vacuum (sorry), but the company claims to reduce shedding by 90%, and I totally believe it.

Check out their products here and click here to buy the one we bought for Maple and the cats.  Don’t let the price scare you.  This is not an ordinary pet brush.  It is a pet grooming tool, a time saver and maybe even a life saver.

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Three Peas in a Pod

Awhile ago, I wrote about Minga, and how she was coping with Maple.  She had a hard time adjusting to her new sibling and it took a long time before she could even be in the same room as Maple.  Recently, however, I have been catching Monster, Minga, and Maple hanging out together and it absolutely melts my heart.  Catching these three cuddled up together is the best!  I am so happy that they all seem to love each other now and I can confidently say that we are one big happy family!

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Fun in the Sun

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Last weekend I was able to get away for a mini vacation to Venice, Florida. I was only there for a few days, but leave it to me to find a dog beach! I only wish Maple had been there with me. Instead, I was totally that weirdo at the dog park without a dog. Nevertheless, some nice people allowed me to take some pictures of their beautiful dogs, frolicking in the Florida sun. Happiness is a dog beach!

If you are ever in the area and want to take your pup to a beautiful beach with lots of room to roam and play, you have to check out Brohard Paw Beach.  You can find more photographs, information, and directions here, and you can watch the dogs in action here!



Neighborhood Watch

Since we bought our house a couple of years ago, there has been a neighborhood cat, who often stops by to visit. She hangs out on our front porch and visits with our cats. When I take Maple outside, she runs toward us.  She is incredibly sweet and affectionate.  We always enjoy her company, and it has also made for some pretty adorable photographs!  She looks just like Monster and Minga.  Who knows, maybe she is a long lost relative.

Thank you Ike & Stella!

It’s no secret that Maple loves Ike & Stella Handmade Petwear!  She has been wearing their collars since she was just a pup.  We were super excited to get a brand new one in the mail today, so here are some cute and sleepy pics of Maple enjoying her new goods.  Thank you Ike & Stella!!

You can learn more about Ike & Stella here and see our previous blog post here.

Home Goods Happy

Home Goods might not be your first thought when it comes to buying pet supplies, but maybe it should be!  Home Goods is one of our favorite places to go when we want to pick up something special for our furry friends. They have an excellent pet section and always have a ton of cool stuff in stock. Toys, treats, and dog beds for days. If you need some last minute stocking stuffers for your fur kids, Home Goods is a great place to go.

Check out this adorable food and water stand we purchased for Maple at Home Goods!

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Delightibles are just delightful!

Awhile ago I was feeling a little guilty because I think sometimes we spoil Maple a little more than the cats.  It’s not that we love her more, it’s just that she demands more attention, and sometimes we give in more than we should.  So on my way home from work recently, I stopped and picked up some cat treats for Monster and Minga.  I can’t remember the brand of the cat treats, but both cats turned their noses up at my offering, batted the treats around for awhile and then eventually walked away, leaving me to clean up the mess!

I decided to try again with some gourmet cat treats from Delightibles.  These ones were a success!  Monster and Minga were climbing all over me, trying to steal the treats right out of my hand!  Delightibles are wheat free, corn free, made without the use of artificial preservatives and come in six flavors:  Chicken, Salmon, Tuna, Turkey, Beef and Dairy.  Monster and Minga loved their new Delightibles cat treats so much that they wanted to share the wealth!  Check out the Maple & Friends Instagram account @mapleandfriends to enter a giveaway for the chance to win a box of Delightibles cat treats for your own fur babies.

*The opinions in this article are my own.  I do not work for, or with, any brand mentioned in this article, nor do I have any official relationship with them.  I have a relationship with GigaSavvy, for whom I create original editorial content.

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November’s Thanksgiving Bark Box

The November Bark Box has arrived and it’s full of things to be thankful for.  This month’s box included some great stuff!  Wagatha’s Kitchen Sink treats were a favorite.  Made with organic, GMO-free ingredients such as bananas, pumpkin, cooked apples, carrots, roasted ground peanuts, flax seed, honey, sunflower seeds, apple cider vinegar, turmeric, cinnamon and ginger, you can be sure your pup is getting a healthy and wholesome snack.  The box had a plush cornucopia filled with squeaky toys.  Maple has been tossing them up in the air and catching them ever since.  It didn’t take long for her to demolish the Diggin Your Dog Charki-O’s beef trachea.  The idea of a beef trachea grossed me out, but Maple loved it!  Also included in the box were some Slow Roasted Rosemary Turducken treats by the Feelgood Treat Company.  They are gluten free treats made with oats, rice, turkey, duck and chicken.  Also inside were some Apawthecary Cleaning Wipes to wash of those paws after a Thanksgiving feast.

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