Is your dog a hitchin’ pup?

SAN MARCOS, Texas – OH MY! I think I may have found the best place in town to bring my pup, Elsie, on a hot Texas day.

Right off the well-known San Marcos Square, lies a food truck park called The Hitch. The Hitch contains six different food trucks with an array of gourmet food to choose from. The coolest part of all, is that The Hitch is pet-friendly! They even call the dogs that come by “hitchin’ pups!”

IMG_5543But wait, it gets better. One of the food trucks, called Mambo Freeze, is a snow-cone stand and they serve Pup-Cones! Now what is a Pup-Cone, you may ask? It is shaved ice, chicken broth and yummy treats to top-it-off! My pup absoluetly loved it. We have been back many times since then and it never fails to get Elsie spinnin’ in circles!

As a plus, it’s within a mile radius of the San Marcos Dog Park and the San Marcos River. Sounds like a perfect bonding day with your furry friend, if ya ask me! Give it a try and let me know what ya think.

Much Ruv,

Kristen

too much ruv

I never imagined myself to be much of a blogger, (If ya’ll weren’t aware, I created this blog for my Fundamentals of Digital and Online Media class at Texas State University) and in the beginning, I honestly can say it made me nervous. You know, putting my thoughts in writing out there for the digital world to see. In the past, if I had to write an essay, I was very particular on who I let proof read it because writing is very personal to me. However, now it’s like I’m a new person. I’ve had an awesome experience blogging and it was incredible to see all of the analytics behind the scenes – whether it be from social media or here on WordPress.

It blows my mind how social media allows you to reach so many people. My most popular week was in the beginning of October (10/5-10/11). In that week I had 136 views and 105 visits to my blog. The most popular post of the year was my “Eh, I don’t want my dog anymore” post. It received 123 views and I think the dramatic title is what pulled more people in. It was really surprising to me that the Sites Stat Data even showed what region the people who were viewing your post came from – two people were viewing from France and Germany!!! I mean, how crazy is that!

Like mentioned above, the tool I found most effective was to share my blog posts to as many social media platforms as possible. Although, I found that Twitter didn’t give me very much interaction; Facebook brought in a lot of my views. In the future I hope to improve on being more of a storyteller, while still being informative. Overall this experience has benefitted me in many ways: It has given me additional practice, which makes me more confident in my writing, while it also gives future employers a chance to get to know me more on a personal level.

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Although my class has come to an end, I still intend on posting as frequently as possible so stay tuned! I have too much ruv to let you guys go!

Much ruv,

Kristen

 

 

 

Why you should keep your dog on a leash

Let me fill you in on the my biggest pet peeve ever..

Have you ever been walking your dog (on their leash, of course) and a dog comes from around the corner or across the park at full speed to “greet” your dog? This kind of thing drives me bonkers!!

Let me tell ya my perspective on the issue.

dogs on leashTo begin, this does not apply to the few people who own dogs that have gone through advanced training and no matter if they see another dog, they will stay at your side. This is to those who have your dog off leash – and don’t get me wrong, I’m sure they’re good dogs – but as soon as they see a dog, they bombard the other pup. Please take a second and imagine how the dog on the leash feels. First, it makes them feel inferior. A dog who is sniffing, jumping and running circles around a dog who is on a leash does not make most leashed dogs very happy. Secondly, you never know how the dog on the leash is going to react. The owner may have his or her dog on a leash because the dog is very dog-aggressive. Not to mention, you never know when something may catch your pup’s eye across the parking lot or street while a car is heading the same direction.

Therefore, in my opinion, I don’t find it worth it to have your dog off-leash. I believe that it is for the safety of your dog and others that they are kept safe on a leash at all times. I hope that I brought a different perspective to at least a single person, because I mean really, nobody wants their furry friend getting hurt! And to those of you who fall victim of this issue, I received a lot of helpful tips from Paws Abilities blog.. I definitely encourage y’all to give it a read!

Much ruv,

Kristen

Party Pup to Babysitter

So I was sitting on my back patio eating breakfast with my pup by my side and I noticed that her head is beginning to get a few grey hairs.. Hm, I thought. My pup, Elsie, will be turning 3 in December so I think it’s a lil early for her to start getting gray hairs! So I began thinking..  I thought about her life.. then my life… and everything that she is going to experience with me, and it about blew my mind!

According to Pet MD, the average medium sized dog probably lives to be about 11 years old. And I mean, I thought about how permanent getting a dog was when I adopted her – but dang, I can’t even comprehend what I’ll be up to in 11 years!

PersonIMG_1261ally, I have never really sat and thought about everything Elsie will be in my life for. Getting a dog in college means that every big thing that happens in your life, your dog will be right there next to you. They start out the party/study pup through college, then eventually they’ll be taking wedding pictures with you and your fiancé and we all know what’s next.. kids, your best furry-friend will be getting tiny human friends! Can you imagine?

I don’t think many people think about how long of a commitment a dog is when they adopt. I did, but then I didn’t. I didn’t think about if this dog would be good with my future children, especially since I am currently in college, not having that in my mind.. AT ALL! Although, now I definitely think that it is worth thinking about before someone adopts, so think about it people!! A dog isn’t a birthday or Christmas present; you don’t get rid of them when life gets hard or busy. They’re your best friend – they’re man’s best friend – treat them that way. Your dog is going to be there for you through think and thin.

Much ruv,

Kristen

5 Best Dog Places in San Marcos, TX

Oh San Marvelous, between the breathtaking San Marcos River intertwined throughout the city, to the up-beat town square and to the beautiful Texas State campus – How could a small town possibly get any better? Well let me tell ya.. dogs are welcome, about, ANYWHERE!!

Yes, I said it. San Marcos is already awesome as it is, but being dog-friendly is kind of like the cherry on top of the sundae. Personally, I think everything is way more fun if I have my furry friend with me, so I have came up with a list of my 5 favorite dog places here in San Marcos, Texas!

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If you have yet to try any of these places out, I urge you to do so! You won’t regret it and your pup’s tail will be wagging for joy!

Much ruv,

Kristen

DIY dog treats

So is it just me or does anyone else wonder what’s all  in a dog treat? The fact that it is packaged up and can last months is a little unsettling to me so I decided to make my own. In all honesty, I really thought that it may be a little complicated but it was surprisingly easy!

I found my recipes on the ever-so-convenient, Pinterest, typing in “Easy Dog Treat Recipes” in the search bar, and I found two recipes that only consisted of FOUR ingredients!! The first recipe is below.

“Cheesy Sweet Potato”

IMG_1283Ingredients

1 Sweet Potato

1/2 cup Shredded Cheese

1 tablespoon Dried Parsely

1 cup Flour

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit
  2. In a large bowl, add all ingredients and mix well
  3. Knead dough into a ball and roll onto a floured surface 1/4 inch thick
  4. Place on a greased baking sheet and bake for about 10-15 minutes
  5. Once cooled, cut with a cookie cutter of your choice (I used a cute, little bone-shaped one)
The second recipe is:

“Peanut Butter Apple”

IMG_1285Ingredients

1/4 cup Apple Sauce

1/4 cup Peanut Butter

pinch Cinnamon

1/2 cup Flour

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit
  2. Mix all ingredients in a large bowl until well combined
  3. Knead dough into a ball and roll onto a floured surface 1/4 inch thick or thinner
  4. Place on a greased baking sheet and bake for about 10 minutes, until the edges are brown
  5. Once cooled, cut with a cookie cutter of your choice (I used the bone-shaped cookie cutter again)
Viola!
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Both, the Cheesy Sweet Potato and the Peanut Butter Apple, made a dozen or so dog treats and the dogs absolutely LOVED THEM!! It definitely was an awesome feeling giving such a yummy treat to my pup and knowing exactly what was in it! So next time you’re feelin’ like cookin’ up some dog treats, give these simple and easy recipes a try! Your furry friend will jump for joy and bark for more!!

Much ruv,

Kristen

We all need a lil {paw}sitivity in our lives

What do the majority of people do when they see a dog?..

Daisy the happy houndyTHEY SMILE! So why do you think we do that – smile? What draws us to dogs? What is so darn special about a dog?

In my opinion, it is because the positivity that a dog is constantly giving off! They are always happy to see you. They don’t care if you’re homeless or make six-figures.  They don’t care what color skin you have or who you believe in. A dog sees a person as is… no judgement, no bias. And that’s why we’re so drawn to them.

What inspired me to write about this, is this awesome blog that I came across, The Adventures of Bella and her Friends. Behind this blog is a gorgeous, black Greyhound named Bella that uses poetry to tell her story or adventure. One poem in particular really stood out to me:

“What is A Smile?”

We all will have a bad day
If only now and then,
(I must have had a couple,
Though I can’t remember when.)

I am a happy houndy
My life is pretty good
I have a home and family
Like every houndy should.

For those who aren’t so lucky
I feel we could do more
I cannot change the world that much,
Stop wars or feed the poor.

A houndy has no money
So cannot help that way,
But I can try to make you smile
And brighten up your day.

A smile is always welcomed
A kindly word or two,
Costs nothing to deliver
And it isn’t hard to do.

And what is even better,
A smile can be returned!
You get back what you’ve given
With profit, I have learned!

It may not make much difference
The problems are still there
But one small act of kindness
Will show them that you care.

And that is worth the effort,
That moment when they smile
To make their world a better place
If only for a while.

-Bella

I could read this poem over and over again and it will forever leave a smile on my face and warmth in my heart. Not only “houndys” have the opportunity to make a person smile. YOU, also, have the opportunity to make someone smile EVERYDAY! So spread love as generously as if you were a dog – they make pretty good examples.

Thanks again for the inspiration, The Adventures of Bella and her Friends.

Much ruv,

Kristen

Eh, I don’t want my dog anymore

Has anyone else noticed that it’s kind of “the thing” to get a dog while in college? I honestly think every one of my friends owns a dog (which is AWESOME), because that leads to play dates, dog events and dog park evenings. I absolutely love having my dog and being able to enjoy those types of things, I mean who wouldn’t? I feel as if that is what the ‘average’ college student thinks of when they consider getting a dog, I definitely did. I can remember my sister (owner of three pups) trying to persuade me to wait to get a dog until after I graduate. She said over and over again that I don’t understand how big of a responsibility a dog is. I claimed that she was wrong and that I was ready for the commitment.. BOY, WAS I WRONG!

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Let’s get one thing straight, you never know what can happen to your precious pup. At the time of adopting my dog, Elsie, she was healthy and heartworm negative.. well, I was not informed that I was supposed to be keeping up with her heartworm prevention medicine (which is about $120 for a years worth). Six months passed and I get informed on how important heartworm prevention is. So I immediately go get her tested for heartworms and sure enough, she was heartworm positive.

For those of you who are not familiar with heartworms, they are carried by mosquitos. Once an infected mosquito bites your dog, they eventually make their way into the bloodstream and start to reproduce. With the heartworms multiplying, they essentially clog up the bloodstream, making it more and more difficult to pump blood during daily activities. As the heartworms continue to grow, they will finally get to the heart and slowly shut it down. With all of this being said, there was no question about it, I was going to get her treated to kill off the heartworms. So I let my Veterinarian know that I wanted to pursue the treatment and then came the amount…. $1,000.

Now I’m not trying to discourage anyone on getting a dog, I just want people (especially college students) to be aware that dogs are a BIG responsibility and along with that, they are NOT cheap. I went forward with paying for the treatment and Elsie is now back to being a healthy pup. I would never, to this day, say that I regret adopting her, even a thousand dollars later. When I signed the paper to adopt her, I was fully committed to her life and everything that it entails. So next time you think about getting a dog or you know someone that wants to get a dog, please remember that dogs are not temporary, they are not something you can throw away when life gets busy or when they get expensive. A dog is your companion and will love you more than you can imagine. Don’t let them down.

Much ruv,

Kristen

a puppy isn’t all that

Like most college students, I had it planned out that as soon as I moved out of my dorm I was going straight to the animal shelter to pick out my dream pup. Of course, I always wanted a puppy. I mean, who wouldn’t? They’re only the most adorable four-legged creatures ever! But then I realized..

The weeks prior to me finally being able to move out, I spent my days (mainly my classes) looking up all of the potential dogs I could adopt. I used a website called Pet Finder that pulls up all of the dogs in your area that need furr-ever homes. As I went through literally hundreds of different dog photos, it became obvious to me that the older dogs are the ones that have the hardest time finding homes because everyone wants a puppy. Many people have the mindset that they have to have a puppy; yes, they are cute, but they are also a huge responsibility. Puppies need a lot of attention. On top of that, puppy vaccinations can cost up to $300.00 (that’s for a healthy pup) and lastly, you can’t forget all of the accidents that go along with potty training. Therefore I thought.. an older dog will not only be better for my time in life (being a college student and all), but I will also get to save a dog that didn’t have as good of chances as the cute, fluffy puppies.

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So from there on, I searched for a dog that didn’t have the best chance in finding a home. One dog in particular stood out to me, and that was my Elsie Moo. Looking back at her shelter photo, she is hardly recognizable to the dog she is now. I was told that Elsie was found lost on the streets, and when I adopted her she clearly did not trust people. I have no idea what happened in her past, but it took weeks for her to finally come around and let me pet her. Although she is still a shy girl, she now lets strangers pet her and she loves to play with all of the dogs! I’m not saying that puppies shouldn’t get adopted, but just keep in mind that older dogs can be just as good of companions. They will never forget that you saved them and in the process, they may just save you.

Much ruv,

Kristen