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Classic Glam Meets Modern Art in Hawthorne Bowl

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When it comes to the inspiration for the design of our dog bowls, a specific aesthetic and environment is what shapes the outcome. The Hawthorne collection is inspired by the classic glamour of old Hollywood and the excitement of modern art.

The Hawthorne collection features a jaw dropping metallic gold finish that makes this bowl a conversation piece as well as a functional feeder for the most discerning pooches.

Isn’t it time you ditched the dingy plastic bowl and upgraded to something that showcases your refined taste?

Shop Hawthorne here

The Health Boosting Power of Dogs

Numerous studies all conclude that interactions with pets, specifically dogs, can decrease stress in humans. Anyone with a pet can attest to this, but what is the science behind it all?

kids-dogSimply put, playing with or petting an animal increases levels of oxytocin, which is a natural stress reducing hormone that our bodies produce. To further add to the hormonal benefits, animals can also reduce the stress hormone called cortisol.

Reduced stress has endless benefits on the mind and body. In a 2001 study, researchers established that pet-owning patients with high blood pressure kept their blood pressure lower during times of mental stress than patients without pets.

Other studies suggest that dog owners may also have increased odds of surviving a heart attack.

And in 2008, a group of researchers documented the successful introduction of a shelter dog to Alzheimer’s patients. Patients were given questionnaires, and many responded that engaging in activities with the dog was beneficial.

To add to the evidence that dogs have a positive effect on our health, children are believed to grow up more confident and perform better in academics if they are raised with a pet. The children are also less likely to suffer from depression. Not only do children love their dog, but they receive enormous amounts of health benefits from their beloved pet.

bbTo recap, here’s how dogs benefit our mental and physical health:

  • Lower stress
  • Decrease high blood pressure
  • Stimulate the mind
  • Provide exercise
  • Decreased chances of suffering from depression
  • Provide companionship

Science has proven that children and adults alike can benefit from playing with dogs. They are a source of calmness and relaxation, and provide stimulation for the brain. We may not have been aware of the science behind the health benefits of owning a dog, but were all aware of one obvious benefit: joy.

 

What to Look for in a Groomer

Lets face it, most dogs aren’t a big fan of bath time. Wrestling Spot into the tub is stressful and some parts of grooming are best left to the professionals. That’s why most of us consider taking our loved pets to a groomer. But finding the right one isn’t always as simple as it should be. Here are some of our tips for finding a groomer that you and your dog will love.

-Groomers don’t have to be licensed. Technically anyone with a pair of scissors can say they are a dog groomer. You need to look for a groomer with good references. If you’re unsure about where to start, ask a friend where they get their dog groomed. Or, if you see a dog with a great clean look walking with their owner, engage with them. Pet owners love to share information like that. Good credentials and pleased customers are key.

-When you get to the shop, check to ensure that it is clean. First impressions are everything. Ask for a tour of the facility. There should be no spaces they refuse to show you. If they turn down giving you a tour, that’s a big red flag. This usually means that they are hiding something.

-Ask questions. Even if your dog is well behaved and doesn’t stress about going to the groomer, ask them how they handle fearful or aggressive dogs. Their response should be a genuine and heartfelt. Something like “We understand it’s uncomfortable for some dogs. If we only get 5 nails clipped, we only get 5 nails clipped. We don’t use force the dog into anything that clearly frightens them.” Also, make sure that the groomer doesn’t sedate the animals. More commonly than you think, groomers will give your dog sedatives to make them easy to handle. This can be dangerous and illegal.

-Make sure your dog likes the groomer. Does your dog seem happy when you pick them up or are they anxious / stressed? A good sign that your dog was treated right is how happy they are around the groomer. Of course, some dogs just don’t like being groomed and will never like the groomer. Trust your instincts. 

 

5 Ways to Combat Your Dog’s Bad Breath

puppy-kissing-boothThere are very few things that are worse than bad dog breath, and if you haven’t been taking care of your doggy’s teeth, you’ll know the next time they try to give you a sloppy kiss. The main cause of awful smelling breath is poor teeth and gum health. Here are 5 easy ways to combat your dog’s bad breath and get their mouth smelling fresh again.

Give your dog a bone!

Chewing is a natural cleanser of plaque and bacteria in your dog’s mouth. This is because it produces saliva which naturally removes odor causing agents and it removes plaque from their teeth. Make sure that the bone isn’t too hard for your pup, or too small. Chipped teeth cause issues and you don’t want them to swallow anything they could possibly choke on.

Add chopped up parsley to your dog’s food.

The benefits of parsley will make you think “why didn’t I do this sooner?” First off, parsley is a natural breath freshener (this is true for humans too) because it has Chlorophyll, which is an antioxidant and anti-inflammatory which kills and prevents bacteria in the mouth. Parsley not only helps breath, but it also helps enhance the function of organs and studies show also help prevent cancer. Just add a few pinches to your pup’s food and they’ll be set!

Keep your dog’s diet clean.

No matter how irresistible those begging eyes can be, avoid giving your dog table scraps and canned food. The best thing for your dog is a natural diet. Switching to natural food works wonders for your dog’s health, and it also freshens breath. Ask your vet which food they recommend.

Clean their feeder often.

Dog bowls can become a breeding ground for bacteria. Our stainless steel liners combat this issue because they are non-porous, so bacteria cannot seep into natural cracks and crevices you find in plastic bowls. Plus, all of our liners lift right out of our designer dog bowls and are dishwasher safe for the easiest cleaning imaginable.

Brush your dog’s teeth.

This seems like an obvious tip, but many people under estimate the importance. Be sure to purchase a pet-friendly toothpaste (the Crest you have in your medicine cabinet is not safe for dogs) and brush their teeth once daily. We recommend having your dogs teeth professionally cleaned as well. It will probably take some practice, but setting up a brushing ritual with your pup will make their breath better and ward of decay.

What other tips do you have for combating bad puppy breath?

 

 

 

Adore Adour – Casual Luxury in a Dog Bowl

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Style isn’t just reserved for us humans, that’s our mantra here at Unleashed Life. One of our very favorite styles of dog bowls is the Adour Collection. Adour offers a timeless and upscale design combined with function and quality.

When we design our dog bowls, we like to imagine the type of stylish environment they would compliment. The Adour collection was created to have a traditional feel but be versatile enough to work in transitional settings as well. Designer and co-founder, J Kent Martin, designed Adour to be reminiscent of a pedestal or statue by giving it visual weight and offering the aged stone finish.

Indeed Adour does look like a sculpture, but it isn’t all about appearance. The collection is lightweight for easy mobility and comes with our removable stainless steel liners. This makes refilling and cleaning easy, especially since the liners are also dishwasher safe.

We love the Adour collection and hope that you do as well!

Check out Adour in gold here! 

 

 

How To Choose the Perfect Dog Trainer

unleashed-lifeSo you have a furry family member or perhaps it’s time for a long overdue training session for a pup you already have…the very first thing you need to do when considering hiring a dog trainer is to decide what your goals are. It might also help you in the decision making process to sit in on a training class to watch their style and how they interact with their “students”.

A good trainer needs good communication skills, not only with the animals but with humans as well.

Here are some things to keep in mind:

-They should practice humane and positive training techniques.
-Use positive reinforcement and rewards
-Avoid using fear or physical punishment
-Understand the theory of dominance
-A good trainer will have questions for you about your dog to get an overview of who your dog is, and to understand the things that are concerning you before the actual training begins.
-A good trainer will have references they can provide you with.
-They will want you to be involved in the training, to learn the techniques, to watch you interact with your dog, and to develop that bond between “parent” and pup. Family friendly classes are always great to be involved in.
-Check your potential trainer’s credentials. Certified trainers have had to meet certain guidelines and requirements.
No matter who you choose as a dog trainer, the important thing to consider is that you’re comfortable with them and their training methods.

New Year New Bowl

Welcome to 2017! New years are always exciting because they symbolize a new start – a chance for exciting changes. Here at Unleashed Life we had an amazing 2016, but we’re so excited about what this year has in store for us. What are you looking forward to in 2017? A new dog bowl perhaps?

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High-Rise White / Phorm / Bruno / High-Rise Nickel / Baroque / Finley / Adour

A new year calls for a new dog bowl, and why not offer your furry friend the very best? Check out our designer dog bowls here!

Already have Unleashed Life bowls? Shop our dishwasher safe liners here!

 

Keeping Paws Healthy in the Cold

winter-dogsBrrr. It’s getting rather chilly outside for most of us. We all know that taking your dog outside and allowing them to get plenty of exercise is important to your their health but this can be quite a challenge in the winter. There are specific concerns when it comes to the bitterness of winter, such as the ones listed here, but for this post we are focusing on your pup’s paws.

Perform Regular Paw Checks

It is important to check your dogs paws regularly to ensure that the pads are crack and injury free. To do this, gently but firmly grasp their paw in your hand and visually inspect the pads for injuries or abnormalities. Next, use your thumb to gently press down in the pads with your thumb and make note of any pain or discomfort your pet reacts to. Lastly, don’t forget to check between their toes for any cuts, debris, or discoloration.

Conduct Regular Maintenance 

Just as it is important for us humans to groom and maintain our feet, dogs need this attention as well. Some dogs have patches of hair sprouting between their pads and toes – kind of like the hair growing out of your uncle’s ears…This should be trimmed back in winter months to keep ice and snow from sticking to the paw. This is an effective way to avoid frostbite. And while your at it, pass this advice on to your uncle.

Moisturize Your Dog’s Paws

Keeping your dog’s feet moisturized can help prevent cuts, cracking or peeling of the paws. This is a common occurrence with humans, and dogs are no strangers to it either. Moisturizing creams work wonderfully, but be sure that they are gentle and safe for your pets. Balms made specifically for pets will work best. These can be picked up nearly anywhere!

To Melt Ice, Non-Toxic Ice Melter

At some point you’re going to have to use chemicals or salt for slippery sidewalks and stairs outside your home. We urge you to use non-toxic pet safe ice melter. These work better than rock salt and will not irritate your pets paws or skin. It’s also safe for children and plants. Find some here.

 

5 Instagram Dogs That Dress Better Than You

We love Instagram, especially for keeping up with our favorite fashionable pooches. We’ve put together a list of 5 dogs that might make you rethink your own wardrobe…

Montjiro the Chihuahua

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Montjiro has caused quite a commotion with her perfectly polished taste and classic good style. Some say she’s the Jackie O of dogs, and we find that hard to disagree with. Follow here!

Colby the Cavapoo

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Never ever underestimate the power of the perfect denim shirt! Follow here!

Bodhi the Shiba Inu (Menswear Dog)

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Why can’t our husbands dress as well as Bodhi? He’s become quite the internet sensation, and has also landed a few big time modeling gigs. What have you done today? Follow here!

Toby LittleDude the Maltese

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This hipster Maltese will make your heart melt and give your serious wardrobe envy. Pretty fly if you ask us. Follow here!

Scrappy Doo and Baby Kaelyn

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Self proclaimed treat eaters and full time models, these precious pups know how to get their swag on. Follow here!

5 DIY Dog Treat Recipes

This time of year calls for long afternoon snuggle sessions with our dog—and plenty of treats (for dogs and humans). We’ve compiled some of our favorite DIY dog treat recipes appropriate for the season. Prepare to spend lots of time in the kitchen (and lots of extra kisses from your dog). Try them all and let us know which treats your dog loves best!

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Photos by Chungah / Damn Delicious

Homemade Peanut Butter Dog Treats

This recipe from Damn Delicious® is appropriate no matter the season. Make sure to find a peanut butter that doesn’t have xylitol, a food additive that’s toxic for dogs.

Ingredients:

  • 2/3 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1/4 cup peanut butter
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3 cups whole wheat flour, or as needed

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat; set aside.
  2. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat pumpkin puree, peanut butter, and eggs on medium-high until well combined, about 1-2 minutes. Gradually add 2 1/2 cups flour at low speed, beating just until incorporated. Add an additional 1/4 cup flour at a time just until the dough is no longer sticky.
  3. Working on a lightly floured surface, knead the dough 3-4 times until it comes together. Using a rolling pin, roll the dough to 1/4-inch thickness. Using cookie cutters, cut out desired shapes and place onto the prepared baking sheet.
  4. Place into oven and bake until the edges are golden brown, about 20-25 minutes.
  5. Let cool completely.

Liver and Cranberry Bars

Are you feeling festive—and a bit adventurous? If your dog loves liver, they’ll love this recipe from Dog Treat Kitchen.

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 lbs calf liver (organic is best)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup fresh cranberries
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup cornmeal
  • 1 tbsp dried parsley

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. Slice the liver into 2-inch chunks.
  3. In a food processor, pulse all the ingredients, except the cranberries.
  4. Scrape the sides of the food processor and continue pureeing until a dough forms.
  5. Remove the food processor blade, then scoop the mixture into a medium bowl.
  6. Fold in the fresh cranberries.
  7. Liberally spray non-stick cooking spray in a 8×8 baking pan.
  8. Spread the mixture into the baking pan.
  9. Bake for 25 minutes.
  10. Let cool in the pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes.
  11. Slide a knife around the edges of the pan. Then release the entire brownie block from the pan onto the cooling rack to completely cool.
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Photo by Andrea / The Cottage Market

Apple, Cheddar, and Bacon Treats

Did you know there’s a National Dog Biscuit Day? As far as your dog’s concerned, that day should be every day. This recipe from The Cottage Market is appropriate all year long.

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups white flour
  • 1 1/2 cups of whole wheat flour
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 tbsp softened butter
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 8 ounces grated sharp cheddar
  • 1 large apple, peeled and grated
  • 2 tbsp of dried parsley
  • 3 tbsp of bacon bits
  • 1 cup milk

Directions:

  1. Place the egg, butter, and olive oil into your mixer bowl and whip together
  2. Add the milk and mix a bit more
  3. Slowly add the flours, then add the grated apple,  cheese, parsley, and bacon bits. Your dough should be nice and smooth. If it’s too dry, add a little touch of water or milk. If it’s too sticky, add a little bit more flour!  
  4. Sprinkle some flour on your board or counter so the dough doesn’t stick. Roll out half of the dough (approximately ¼-inch thick)
  5. Sprinkle a little bit more cheese, bacon bits, and parsley on top. Give it a few rolls so everything sticks.  
  6. Cut into shapes.
  7. Place them on your prepared baking sheet and pop them into a preheated 375 degree F oven for 20 – 30 minutes.

Blueberry Biscuits

This recipe from Martha Stewart‘s website combines healthy with delicious.

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups oat flour
  • 2 1/2 cups quinoa flour
  • 3/4 cup flax meal
  • 1/2 cup frozen, organic, unsweetened blueberries
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 large egg

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with a nonstick baking mat or parchment paper; set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, mix together all ingredients with 1 cup water to form a dough. Roll out mixture between two sheets of plastic wrap to 1/4-inch thick; remove plastic wrap and cut out biscuits with a 3 1/2-inch bone-shaped cookie cutter. Reroll scraps and continue cutting out biscuits.
  3. Space biscuits 1 inch apart on prepared baking sheet. Bake for 30 minutes until nicely browned and firm.
  4. Transfer biscuits to a wire rack. Turn off oven and place biscuits on wire rack in oven overnight. Remove from oven and store in an airtight container up to 2 weeks.
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Photo by Sarah Dickerson / Chic Sprinkles

Puppermint Dog Treats

We love this recipe from Pretty Fluffy—it combines the joy of the season with ingredients you don’t typically see in dog treats. Added bonus: peppermint will freshen your dog’s breath too.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups almond flour
  • 4 tbsp coconut flour
  • 1 tbsp coconut oil
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 4 tbsp finely chopped fresh mint

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  • Combine ingredients together in a bowl and mix together until you form a ball. If mixture is too wet, add more coconut flour. If too dry, add a little more water.
  • Roll out your dough and cut the treats using bite-size cookie cutters. Sprinkle with a little coconut flour to prevent from sticking.
  • Place your treats on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake in the oven for 15, flip and bake for another 15. Turn off and let set in the oven until crisp.
  • Makes approx. 20 treats (dependent on size of cutter). Let cool before giving to your dog.

“More Treats, Please!”

We tried, but we couldn’t narrow this post to just five recipes. If you’re looking for more fun and festive treats, check out these recipes from The Daily Treat. We promise your dog will love them!

Treat Your Dog to a Loving Sitter

You love your dog so much it hurts, and you always go above and beyond for them. Get total peace of mind when you’re out of town or have a long day at work—turn to Rover.com, the nation’s largest community of trusted pet sitters and dog walkers. Every stay and walk includes premium insurance, 24/7 support, and a reservation guarantee. Rover sitters live in Austin, Miami, and in 10,000+ cities nationwide. Start your search today to connect with a sitter who will give your dog the love, snuggles, and treats they deserve. And, while you’re at it, check out these DIY dog treat recommendations from Rover pet owners and sitters.

Thank you to our awesome friends at Rover.com for contributing this post!

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