KAW-For the dogs...

magsnjFebruary 23, 2014

The Kong factory........

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2 appreciative dogs.....

    Bookmark   February 23, 2014 at 2:47PM
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So well behaved waiting for their treats! Super cute!

    Bookmark   February 23, 2014 at 5:24PM
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It's a rare moment of being well behaved! The black dog (Lucy) is 11 months and the white dog (Ben) is 5 months... so there's a reason that child gate is closed! :)

    Bookmark   February 23, 2014 at 6:22PM
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That's adorable!!! It looks like they both want the red one.

    Bookmark   February 23, 2014 at 6:23PM
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How long do those keep them busy? What a great treat!

    Bookmark   February 23, 2014 at 6:46PM
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It keeps them busy for about an hour..... the other ones went into the freezer and once frozen it's a little more than an hour. A lot of people just do peanut butter which would last just as long. I add the unsweetened coconut to help their coats shine and keep them smelling good.

    Bookmark   February 23, 2014 at 7:06PM
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Maple (my lab) is jealous and wants you for an owner...

love the faces!

    Bookmark   February 23, 2014 at 7:59PM
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Awesome. Love your pups.

    Bookmark   February 23, 2014 at 8:02PM
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Forgive my ignorance, but what the heck are Kongs? And what are you making?

Inquiring dogs want to know and mine don't want to miss out! :)

Yours are serious cuties!

    Bookmark   February 23, 2014 at 8:39PM
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CEFREEMAN!!!! FINALLY!! I get to teach YOU something! LOL. I can't tell you how many posts of yours I've read and learned from.

I adore these dogs.....I got Lucy as soon as I felt I had a handle on my house, and then I took her to a local animal rescues charity event (photos with Santa) and that's where she found Ben for us.

When I first brought Lucy home I knew that since she was a Lab mix I was going to have a chewer. So I looked into absolutely everything to redirect her from my furniture... and my base molding.... and my feet.... you get the point.

The winners were Kongs and bully sticks and elk antlers (all from the USA). They kept her happily chewing long enough to help teething and to keep her occupied and give me a break.

Some people use marrow bones with dogs, and once the marrow is gone they'll fill the hole with other things to make the dog more interested. A Kong works in a similar way. From the ASPCA website, they describe a Kong as:

"The KONG is a nontoxic, dishwasher-safe rubber toy with a hollow center. When stuffed with food, it provides dogs with a healthy outlet for their natural desire to chew and lick. KONGs come in many sizes, from very tiny to extra-large. Some are made for puppies with baby teeth, some are made for regular chewers and some are made for dogs with powerful jaws."

The link is below and it has more info on why they think they're beneficial for your dog....I just know mine love them, so I keep them coming

I put any mixture peanut butter, unsweetened coconut flakes, coconut oil, banana, yogurt, dog meat-loaf (I cook it for them) into their kongs...I make enough for the week and I freeze them and they get one a day. They spend an hour+ happily licking and biting it in their crates (I don't like peanut butter slime/slooge on my rugs), and then I let them out, they run to the other one's crate, grab the other dogs Kong, and bring it to their beds and clean it out and chew on it. They really love them.

Here is a link that might be useful: Kong info

    Bookmark   February 23, 2014 at 9:12PM
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mags, you have the happiest pups! I admire you for having two large teenagers in the house - I can see that the kongs are worth the effort.

I still have a couple of marrow bones that I got for my lab - and he's been gone for 11 years.

    Bookmark   February 23, 2014 at 9:25PM
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HA! Look at those dawgs! So attentive and good.... funny.

    Bookmark   February 23, 2014 at 9:41PM
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What adorable, attentive pups! I love the idea of adding coconut and oats to the PB in the Kong...perhaps my boxers need this as a treat soon! (I have a Lucy, too. :))

    Bookmark   February 23, 2014 at 9:56PM
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At 1st I thought you had 7 dogs! But, the 2 you do have, are adorable! They are so pretty.

You mention putting PB & unsweetened coconut in them. Do you use what is in the glass canister too? It looks like oatmeal. I break up puparoni's & stuff them into the kongs. My dogs can empty them in about 15 min's max. I think I'm going to have to try the PB & coconut & freeze them. I'd love for mine to be kept busy for about an hr!!

Thanks for sharing.

    Bookmark   February 23, 2014 at 9:57PM
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Attentive and good as long as there's food in front of them.... here they are in their natural state:

And their sister stares on in horror:

    Bookmark   February 23, 2014 at 10:06PM
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Yes! Sorry! The other thing I add in are quick oats. Some people don't like their dogs to have grains so I didn't include it.

    Bookmark   February 23, 2014 at 10:11PM
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Oh my gosh, they are sooo cute! I love that they get along so well. And the cat is too darn precious. The look on her face says it all. I had a cat - passed away last yr - & she wasn't fond my 2 pups in the least. Avoided them like the plague!

Thanks for the other ingredient. I'm off tomorrow to the store to pick up a few more kongs so I can have them frozen & ready to go! Thank you again.

    Bookmark   February 23, 2014 at 10:16PM
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There are few things that demonstrate joy in the world than babies of any species. They are BEAUTIFUL!

I didn't know I was such a teacher! I'll take that as quite a compliment. Normally, I just talk and hope it makes sense. :)

My old girl has kind of iffy teeth. She got a bone stuck on a back molar, which when the vet forced it off, broker her tooth. She doesn't seem to care about much, still happily chewing on her bones and treats, but I think I'll explore something for an old girl. At probably 14, she's still jumping and twisting in the air when I come to feed her in the morning!

Now, I might have a similar thing, but maybe for a dog that doesn't chew? I take restaurant scraps and divide them up into baggies. I squish them into a ball and freeze them. I give them to Morgan periodically and she is busy for a while!

Thank you for the info and the link. I think these sound like brilliant toys!

Here's a picture of my girl helping me build my MBR cabinets.

    Bookmark   February 23, 2014 at 10:27PM
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This cat is intrigued by them for sure.... if I sit on the floor with the dogs, she'll come over and lay on the ground and chirp, and she won't let them intimidate her... she walks freely on the floor and will swat and hiss at them if they overstep boundaries (I've yet to figure out what the boundaries are b/c sometimes she'll let them sniff her nose and be just fine).

I have another cat who is a tuxedo cat, and I swear he taunts Lucy. He loves for her to chase him, and she obliges. I used to feel bad for him, but he'll walk into the room, and if she's sleeping he'll circle about hoping she'll pick up on his scent and if she doesn't wake, he'll actually meow to get her to wake up and chase him. She's caught up to him before and hasn't done anything to him, so I've gotten less worried about it. Apparently it's a game and I just don't understand the interest for him.

When you make your Kongs, don't forget about my warning about the peanut butter slime/stooge/drool. It comes of the hole on the top of the Kong usually.... it's not the worst thing in the world, but you'd definitely prefer not to have to clean it off your carpet or their bed.

    Bookmark   February 23, 2014 at 10:28PM
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Oh my goodness!!! Look at that face!!! She's a dog anyone could fall in love with at first sight, CEFreeman! That big smile and those expressive eyes/eyebrows! I'm sure she brings you a lot of joy!

    Bookmark   February 23, 2014 at 10:33PM
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CEF, I just want to give your sweet girl a big hug! She looks like she's lived some great life so far. Does she have corgi in her? So cute!

Mags, I love that your tuxedo cat taunts your dog! Too cute! Thanks for the reminder on the mess! Ick!

    Bookmark   February 23, 2014 at 10:46PM
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If anyone ever wanted to actually put their kitchen's to work for their dogs, my favorite book on home cooking (or just supplementing your dogs kibble) is Natural Dog by Deva Khalsa VMD. It's really informative. I'm posting the amazon link even though the price is ridiculous (I think I paid $7 for the book in the summer when Lucy had a bad reaction to her food) b/c it lets you look inside the book. It has really good information on what types of things are good for your dog so you can supplement their kibble with the same types of things you eat if you don't want to cook for them(I would never have thought of giving them bananas by myself) and also gives you the history of the dog food industry.

Here is a link that might be useful: Dog Nutrition book

    Bookmark   February 23, 2014 at 11:43PM
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Deleted duplicate

This post was edited by magsnj on Mon, Feb 24, 14 at 0:03

    Bookmark   February 24, 2014 at 12:01AM
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And puppies too, so well behaved! They were probably just vibrating waiting for the kongy goodness :)

    Bookmark   February 24, 2014 at 2:14AM
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We found Morgan in 2004.
We were driving south on the Ohio 70, returning from my mom's in MI. Way ahead, we saw brake lights coming on. Then we saw something moving down the left side of the highway.

Sure 'nuff, it was a terrified Rottweiler. Pooping, drooling, ears pressed flat back, scared. We looked at each other and pulled over. My DH got out of the car and started going back after her. People were great. Stopping, cheering, a semi- driver blocked several lanes, all so DH could get ahold of her and leash her with his belt.

We ignored the unaware idiots screaming, "Get your effing dog out of the road." Huh?

While he was doing this, I was looking ahead and saw brake lights coming on again. Sure 'nuff, another black dot was running down the road. I got out, knelt down and started calling her, clapping my hands. She ran up to me and did the Dog Love Dance. She was Morgan.

Morgan had a broken halter on and Shelby (or Rottie) had a collar with expired tags on. We think they were dumped at the rest top right about where they were coming on the highway. We also think they left Shelby's tags on so no one would shoot her. We figure they were 2-4 years old?

Anyway, they hopped up in the truck, snuggled down, and slept all the way to our home in MD. Shelby died a couple of years ago, so Morgan has been an only dog.

I did foster some really sweet pugs for several years, because Morgan was getting lonely and developed a limp. That went away with company. They wouldn't play, though, because everything tugged on became a power struggle and they'd fight. Over food, too, for a while. It was uuuuugggggly. Then they settled down.

So that's my girl. She's having some arthritis trouble, and a weakness in her back legs. Every so often she can't get up, so I pick her up and stand her up. She gets her bearings and off she goes.

She's quite smart. I watched her lift up the fence and let the dogs, then herself out. I noticed later than she'd let herself back in, but them on the outside of the fence. Looking at me with the thought on her face, "Look at those BAD dogs! I stayed here like I'm supposed to!"

My girl. :)
Here's Morgan on her bed with her space heater in the mud room where she can go in and out at night with the dog door. She snuggles and snores.

    Bookmark   February 24, 2014 at 8:55AM
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Your dogs are adorable! I am such a sucker for dogs. My GSD used to get filled Kong toys but she has a very restricted diet in her old age (11 years old next month) and so we can't really fill them anymore.

Kong toys are so fantastic. There are numerous varieties and sizes. The blue/white ones I believe are "puppy" ones and they seem to be softer and lighter. The red ones are for normal chewers and the black ones are for super chewers. Just be a little careful if you have a super duper chewer. My girl decapitated several of the largest black Kongs with her super chewing in her younger days. Even if you don't want to use peanut butter, you can also squeeze them a little and wedge other solid treats inside. They're also great for throwing (outside or in a non-delicate part of the house) because they bounce every which direction. Just be careful because they will bounce wildly and can knock things over.

    Bookmark   February 24, 2014 at 11:51AM
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Another vote of approval for Kongs. Our German Shepherd loved his red one. We used to pack it with peanut butter studded with doggie biscuits. Magsnj, I never thought to be as creative as you are with the different ways to stuff these, great ideas!

Those are wonderful happy pictures of your two dogs playing in the snow.

CEF, what a wonderful dog story. We always stop and rescue dogs too, but so far, in recent years, we've been able to find their owners (so nobody has permanently moved in with us for a while.) DH is very good at using his belt for a quick leash, and we keep old leashes and collars in our broom closet for a quick rescue if we see a lost dog.

I love Morgan. She looks like a wise old soul. She was very lucky to land in your home.

    Bookmark   February 24, 2014 at 1:36PM
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CEF, that's a great tale. It's funny how the dogs you never knew you wanted find you.

    Bookmark   February 24, 2014 at 5:09PM
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I love the idea of filling and freezing Kong toys. My dog eagerly goes searching through the house when I tell her to bring a "peanutbutter toy." There must be a half dozen of them under furniture and lurking in corners where she has lost them. I hope she doesn't learn to open the freezer!

A quick search on Amazon and AddALL found really outrageous prices for the book magsnj listed--$200 new, $100 used!!!! Mags, please tell me it isn't worth that!!

Does anyone have any other title they can recommend? I am interested in supplementing "good" commercial dog food with healthier additions?

With suggestions from some here, I bought a medium sized LEM grinder and have been adding ground chicken hindquarters to her food. She certainly loves it, and they can be had quite inexpensively at our local IGA (49 cents a pound).

    Bookmark   February 24, 2014 at 5:29PM
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CEF, what a wonderful story. It brought tears to my eyes. They were lucky dogs to have had you drive by that night. I just don't understand people that can let go of dogs, especially if they've had them for a long time. Breaks my heart. Thank you for being so good & giving them a forever home. Morgan is a beauty! Lucky little girl!

Bellsmom, I saw the price too on the book & thought that's either a typo or one heck of a book! I think I'll look for something else!

    Bookmark   February 24, 2014 at 9:08PM
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Neat and inspiring! I work for a company that sells pet toys and I've never bought my dog a KONG. That changes tomorrow! He will love these, loved hearing the testimonials and seeing the dog KAW in action pictures.

    Bookmark   February 24, 2014 at 9:26PM
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Lol...Bellsmom, I said I was only attaching the link so you could look inside the book!! The price is ridiculous. I don't want to say it's not worth $200 b/c the information I've gotten from it is invaluable (from food to buying a calendula tincture to help Lucy's sores (from a chicken allergy) to heal... nothing else worked and she kept licking at the wound), but I wouldn't pay $200 for it....I think I saw it for 14.99 the last time I looked for my friend.

If you have a kindle, here it is in eBook form (


And I'm including a link that has it for $14

Some people love Dr Pitcairn's book.... I've looked at them side by side and by far prefer the one that I have, but enough people like that book that I'm willing to say it's just my personal preference. Dr Khalsa was a pioneer in holistic veterinary practices. The book is entertaining and informative. I use it the same way I use my Better Homes and Gardens plaid cookbook. It's a great reference.

Here is a link that might be useful: Natural Dog

    Bookmark   February 24, 2014 at 11:05PM
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Here's a brief listing of what you can and can't feed your dog if you happen to be making it for yourself:

Never feed your dog onion
Never feed your dog grapes
Never feed your dog raisins

CAN (Honestly, the list is huge, so I'm just going to list what I've given them that doesn't seem obvious)
olive oil
Apples (I take the skin off)
Melons (they LOVE watermelon and cantaloupe)

The list goes on and on and on. The book goes into why certain things are good for them (watermelon and apple replaces electrolytes and helps hydrate in the summer, parsley is good for the kidneys and bladder, etc., etch., etc.). And it's actually fun to eat an apple and throw the dogs some every other bite.

    Bookmark   February 24, 2014 at 11:22PM
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OH! And eggs.... and their very crushed shells!!! The book says:

"Because dogs do not suffer from thickening and hardening of the arteries, they are not subject to high cholesterol, there's no need to worry about these problems resulting from their consumption of eggs or dairy"

, so if you want to give them all your egg yolks, they'll love you for it and you don't have to feel guilty. Actually, it contains omega-3, so you can feel good that you're treating their heart, coat and skin so well.

Also, I usually take my immersion blender and blend the eggs along with the egg shells to make the shells tiny. Shells are rich in calcium, and unlike humans, dogs supposedly enjoy the taste.

This post was edited by magsnj on Tue, Feb 25, 14 at 10:25

    Bookmark   February 24, 2014 at 11:33PM
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You could also try Dr. Greg Martinez' books. Dog Dish Diet and Dog Dish Cookbook. All of my dogs are thriving on their new menu. They would overeat if I let them. We used to only give dry kibble. They had access to it all day and night. I make crock pot meals for them now and keep a supply in the freezer. My oldest dog is getting around better now. All of my dogs cannot tolerate corn so we fed them Diamond dog food with no corn, wheat, etc. It is expensive so we were happy to find the recipes for crock pot dog food in the vet's book. Much cheaper than what we were paying and healthier.

    Bookmark   February 25, 2014 at 4:29AM
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Now my dogs have requested their own bedroom. I knew I should have never left the HGTV website showing on my computer! LOL

    Bookmark   February 25, 2014 at 4:33AM
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Thanks for the link, Mags. Yes, the price on Amazon made me laugh. Wonder if anyone buys at that price.

I ordered the very reasonably-priced copy from DeepDiscount. (Powell's books has sold their $14 copy, although it still shows up on AddALL.) And I ordered a copy of Dog Dish Diet on Amazon--thank you to whoever suggested that one.

It will be fun to have new "cookbooks" to play with.

And, since I was placing an order with Nuts.com, I ordered some flaked unsweetened coconut. Do you promise, Mags, that coconut will make the dog more fragrant?

Thanks to all of you my cooking will soon be, hopefully only partially, for the dogs!

CEFreeman--Four of our cats and one of our dogs (these all dead now after long lives with us) came to me through desperate students who offered them up to me because they were not allowed to keep them. I will never forget the seventh grade girl, tears in her eyes, who smuggled her kitten into my classroom after the farm dogs had killed the mother and the rest of the litter. (All of the kids knew I was a softy for beasts of all sorts--Joe's newts lived for a couple of weeks in an aquarium on my desk!) Some of the students checked on "their" pets for years afterwards.

And I am still haunted, after many years, by the memory of a desperate doberman running full out down a high multi-lane expressway overpass through downtown Louisville. There was absolutely NO way I could get over and invite the animal in. I will never forget its palpable panic. Your dogs were SO lucky to find you.

    Bookmark   February 25, 2014 at 10:06AM
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I'm ready to buy all the books and try to sell them on Amazon!! I could make a killing!! While the price it's ridiculous, maybe it's a testament to how good the book is?! Please let me know what you think!

I'm not sure if I can promise your dogs won't smell like dogs, but I've read people who swear by coconut and coconut oil to improve a dogs smell. My dogs don't smell doggy.....and I give them coconut and coconut oil.....but I also trend to think that the fact that I cook all their meals (thank goodness for my freezer) has something to do with it too.

Your stories are very touching. What's the saying? The gauge of the success of a civilization is how it treats it's weakest members? I like to think there are enough people like you in the world to offset the ones that aren't so kind

    Bookmark   February 25, 2014 at 5:39PM
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