Below is a list of people, products, and pet-related things that I adore and think you should know about, too! I’m always looking for more pet-friendly products, services, and places, so if you know of any that I should definitely check out, please let me know!
BarkBox – We love BarkBox! It’s a fun monthly box filled with goodies for your pup, usually some super treats and adorable, themed toys. You select what size your dog is, so you get appropriately sized items. Use referral code “SHUTTERHOUND” to receive a free month! It’s fun getting a box of goodies for your pup each month and I swear I get one right as my treat jar is getting a little low.
Bear’s Bites – All their meat comes from a local farm right here in Central Illinois, Little Blue Farm, and is hormone free and steroid free AND all of their fruit and veggies are organic! Healthy, tasty treats that your dog will LOVE – what more can you ask for?!
Eddie’s Wheels – Custom pet wheelchairs for paralyzed and disabled pets. I have a cart from Eddie’s Wheels for my dachshund, Lola, and the craftsmanship is suburb. You can tell that they really care about animals and strive to add mobility back into pet’s lives. Not to mention that the cart is warrantied for the life of your pet.
Pawbo – I love my Pawbo! Pawbo is a pet camera, treat dispenser, and laser tag game! I use it to check in on my pups while I’m at work. There is a two way microphone, as well, so I can say hello to my pets from afar! This was one of the reasons I went with Pawbo as my petcam, because surprisingly most do not have a microphone that works both ways! Kai, my boy dachshund, LOVE the Pawbo and gets excited when I check in and give treats. Lola, my girl, likes the treats but isn’t so sure about the talking thing in the corner. It’s completely opposite of what I thought would happen, but I can check in without them even knowing and see what they’re up to, which is usually sleeping.
Spoiled Bratzwear K9 Originals – Love their soft, adorable collars and pet clothes for small dogs. Their collars are soft on the inside, which is perfect for hairless dogs or dogs with sensitive skin, like mine.
WiggleLess Dog Back Brace – Not only is this back brace amazing for dogs that have current or previous back issues, it’s great added support and a preventative measure for all dogs alike! See our review of our WiggleLess brace here. We highly recommend it for the added support and peace of mind, which is priceless!
Bortell Animal Hospital – I LOVE Dr. Bortell and his staff. They’re amazing. We’ve been going to Dr. Bortell since 2013 for acupuncture for Lola after she went down. There is no doubt in my mind that her miraculous recovery was made possible by Dr. Bortell’s treatments. Not only is Dr. Bortell certified in Western medicine, he is also certified in Traditional Chinese Medicine. Which means you have lots of options for your furry friend. My only complaint is that I can’t teleport to Dr. Bortell’s office instead of driving.
Charmaine’s Pet Spa – You can really pamper your pooch at Charmaine’s in the Junction City Shopping Center.
Pekin Veterinary Clinic – The staff here is amazing AND it offers the only water rehabilitation in the Peoria-area. They are home to the Central Illinois Small Animal Rehabilitation Center, which is where Lola did the water treadmill to help gain strength after her back surgery for a slipped disc.
Rescues + Organizations
Alliance of Therapy Dogs – Nationwide – This was the organization that Lola and I were a registered therapy dog team for 4 years with. We LOVE them and highly recommend them. Their teams visit hospitals, special needs centers, schools, nursing homes, and more. Our objective is to form a network of caring individuals who are willing to share their special animals in order to bring happiness and cheer to people, young and old alike.
Foster Pet Outreach – Peoria, IL – They rescue and foster pets from the Central Illinois area. Fostering allows them to get a better sense of the animal’s personality and can place them in the perfect home. (P.S. My mom got her dachshund, Michael, from them!)
MidWest Dachshund Rescue – Illinois, Indiana, + Wisconsin – A rescue that focuses on Dachshunds! They have fosters throughout the three states that care for doxies and find them the perfect home. (P.S. I got Kai from here!)
Paws Giving Independence – Peoria, IL – Paws Giving Independence rescues dogs from local shelters and trains them to be service dogs to assist people in need while providing support to encourage independence.
Peoria Humane Society – Peoria, IL – Peoria’s main animal shelter. They focus on ending pet overpopulation, cruelty and neglect to animals, and promoting respect and kindness to all through education and public awareness
TAPS No Kill Animal Shelter – Pekin, IL – TAPS No-kill Animal Shelter serves as a safe haven for homeless dogs and cats in need.
Bark in the Park – Located on the Riverfront in October, Bark in the Park provides a fun afternoon for you and your dog, including: photos, contests, raffles, auctions, and more!
Running With The Dogs – Paws Giving Independence does this yearly fundraiser at Junction City. It’s a 5k run or 3k walk that you can do with your dog! A great way to raise money, spend time with your pup, and exercise!
Bradley Park in Peoria, IL – Separated big dog and little dog area! There always seems to be a lot of people down here, most of them regulars.
Happy Tails Dog Park in Pekin, IL – Separated big dog and little dog area! Always lots of wiener dogs whenever we go, which is a plus! Many people bring their own lawn chairs and are very friendly.
Washington “Bark” District Dog Park in Washington, IL – This has a separated big dog and little dog area. This opened in the spring of ’16, so it’s still fairly new and there aren’t too many people there when you go.
22 Essential Items to Get Before Bringing Home Your New Puppy – This article gives you some pointers on the essential things your puppy will need and a few nice-to-haves too, helping you to stick with things that are actually going to benefit you and your puppy.
Bringing Home a Rescue Pet – some great tips for bringing home a new furry-family member and how to best introduce them to their new family and environment.
Can My Dog Eat This? – A great printable infographic that lists out what foods are and aren’t okay for your dog to eat! It’s perfect to put on your fridge!
Complete Guide to Pet-Proofing Your Home – This guide looks at each room of the home, as well as outside yards. It will review potential problem areas and how owners can better “pet-proof” each.
Daily Dog Tag – I love this website! It’s filled with beautiful photos and tons of adorable dog-related blog posts. It’s one of my favorites
Designing a Pet Friendly Room – I can’t be the only one who keeps their pets in mind when I’m planning out my space! This has some great things to keep in mind that keep the space both functional and stylish!
Dodger’s List – If you have a long-backed dog PLEASE visit Dodger’s List and educate yourself on IVDD and the symptoms. Time is everything when dealing with IVDD and I wish I knew more about it when Lola slipped her disc. And if you ever do have an IVDD episode, please post a board on the forums and the angels that are on Dodger’s List and they will help and support you. I can’t recommend this website enough!
Driving With Dogs 101 – a thorough guide on various ways to ensure your pet is traveling safely in your car.
Essential Guide to Owning Your First Puppy – This has an amazing, in-depth infographic and tons of information for first-time puppy owners! Definitely check this out when you start thinking about bringing home a little one!
Home Safety Guide for Pet Owners – This guide from Expertise.com rules! It has a common household hazards, food safety, pet proofing your house, and natural disaster preparation for pet owners! I highly recommend new pet owners and long-time pet owners alike to check it out. I bet there’s some info in there that you didn’t know or might’ve forgot.
How to Afford a Service Dog – As we know, service dogs require extensive training. That training, in addition to veterinary costs, staff and dog trainers, registration and more, runs the average cost of a service dog between $20,000 and $60,000. For many individuals who need a service dog, these costs can be way out of their budget. However, there are several options to make a service dog more affordable.
How to Care For Dogs Recovering From Surgery or an Injury – This guide offers some practical general guidelines for caring for your dog after surgery.
K9 Back Pack – Another website for IVDD-affected dogs! Tons of resources if your dog is having an episode. I especially love their Twitter, because they post daily words of encouragement. It’s stressful when your dog has IVDD, but they are there for you to help and lift your spirits.
Keeping Pets Safe in the Home – A great page with lots of advice – including room by room advice on keeping your pet safe at home!
Lost Dogs Illinois – I hope you’re never faced with a situation where your dog is lost, BUT if you are, please go to Lost Dogs Illinois’ website and fill out the form. The power of social media is used wonderfully to help owners find their lost dogs.
Most Dog-Friendly Cities – Dogs are family, but when you have one, moving can be, well, ruff. Not only do you need to find the perfect home for you and your family, but you need to ensure there’s plenty of room and nearby green space for your furry family members too. It also might help if you’re moving to, or within, one of the following cities.
Pet Masters – I love Pet Masters! It’s an online database of pet services (photographers, grooming, vets, and more!) that you can search and browse. A great resource for pet parents!
Pet Ownership Cost Guide – This is a wonderful breakdown of the cost of owning a pet – great for those thinking about buying or adopting a pet soon!
Pet-Proofing Your Home & Yard – This informative article by HomeAdviser.com has tons of ways to ensure each room of your house and even your yard is safe and sound for your furry family members.
Safety Guide for Pets in Your Car – Fantastic, visual article on how to make them safe during the journey and prepare the indirect details to keep them safe, healthy, and happy when you travel.
Seniors & Pets Guide – The National Council for Aging Care has some great points for why seniors should have a pet, including the companionship and exercise, as well as things to consider before getting a dog – like cost and commitment.
State-by-State Guide to Moving With Pets – This is a state-by-state interactive map that allows pet owners to easily view the specific veterinary health certificates, permits and vaccinations that are required to move their pet to a new state.
Train Travel with Your Pet – Traveling by train with your pet is another great option besides driving or flying. It’s often cheaper and safer than flying, especially! This article has some fantastic info if you’re considering traveling by train with your furry friend.
Traveling Internationally With Your Pet – Whether you’re moving to another country or going on vacation, there may come a time when you want or need to bring your pet with you when traveling internationally. This is a thorough guide with useful tips!
Traveling With Your Pet – This website features some tips and tricks for traveling safely with your pets. Whether you’re going on a trip or relocating altogether with your pets, this is great information to keep in mind.
The Ultimate Clean-House Guide for Dog Owners – If you’re a dog owner already, you may feel like it’s a constant struggle to keep your home clean and your dogs happy simultaneously, but it doesn’t have to be. What you do need to have is a plan and a strategy, and you want to follow some specific techniques. Check out some great tips and tricks here.