Treat with a reason: Dynamo Dog Functional Treats from Cloud Star

Not all treats are created equal. The goal for most treats is that they taste good to your pup, and contain ingredients you find appropriate for your dog. But that doesn’t mean you can go shoving whatever tastes good in your dog’s mouth, any more than you should do that for yourself, right? However, what if the treat served a purpose, other than empty calories? Cloud Star’s line of Dynamo Dog Functional Treats accomplish exactly this. They’re a treat with a reason!

Glad that the treats weren’t just empty calories, we (well, Izzie and Maddie) decided to take the Dynamo Dog Functional Treat product line for a spin, so to speak.

What’s “functional” about them?

First of all, let me say that for each variety of the Dynamo Dog Functional Treat line, the treats are free of grain, gluten, wheat, corn, soy, artificial colors, artificial flavors, and byproducts, plus are made in the USA. Being a dog mom that watches what her dogs are allowed to eat, I give this a big appreciative thumbs up.

Izzie and Maddie tried all three “functions” of the functional treats:

  • Tummy – for daily support of digestive health – with pumpkin, ginger, and added probiotics
  • Skin & Coat – for daily support of healthy skin and shiny coat – with salmon and added Vitamin E
  • Hip & Joint – for daily support of healthy joint function – with bacon & cheese, or with chicken, plus added Glucosamine HCL and Chondroitin Sulfate

 Treat with a reason: Dynamo Dog Functional Treats from Cloud Star

Because the treats are nutraceutical in nature, each bag clearly provides feeding instructions for your dog based on their weight. My girls were glad to learn the recommended “dosing” was daily, athough the recommended “dosage” was half of one treat each. The soft treats easily split in half (or even smaller) for the purpose of sharing with two eager dogs.

Our Experience

When we moved last month, Maddie was having a bit of tummy trouble. I knew from prior experience that pumpkin and ginger were good ingredients to calm a dog’s stomach. So I was pleased to try her on the Tummy treats. With added probiotics, pumpkin, and ginger, I knew those ingredients would be beneficial to her condition, and they were. 

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Holiday stress? Yep, dogs get it, too

 Holiday stress? Yep, dogs get it, tooAs much as you might love the holiday season, it can be stressful. So much to fit in to your schedule, so much you feel like you  “have” to do. And while dogs don’t have those same types of stressors, you being stressed, plus the changes in the house and additional visitors can lead to holiday stress for your dog!

For my dogs, the addition of holiday decor that they aren’t supposed to touch, chew, fondle, or otherwise maim, can be a stress. And added visitors are always stressful, as my dog Izzie (pictured) can be a bit territorial.

This year, because we are moving to a new house, none of the Christmas decorations are being unboxed, but in the place of that stress is the stress of a move and the house being overrun by boxes.

Izzie in particular hate hate HATES the sound of the packing tape dispenser gun – which legitimately has to be used repeatedly to put together and seal every moving box.

So when I received an inquiry from the good folks at Pet Naturals of Vermont to try their line of Calming chews for dogs, it couldn’t have come at a better time!

I received some samples of the calming chews in the mail a few weeks ago and decided Izzie would be my test subject.

So, first of all, what’s in Calming chews? [Read more…]

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The DogSplendor Holiday Gift Guide

At this point there is no avoiding that the holidays are right around the corner. Without a doubt, many discerning dog parents will take the time to buy a present (or two or five) for the favorite furry faces on their list.

So, without further ado, I present the 2013 DogSplendor Holiday Gift Guide – with fun items for dogs and the people who love them. We’re getting this guide out early so you have plenty of time to order.  Make sure you check out the special deals for DogSplendor readers!


DS Holiday Gift Guide Cover The DogSplendor Holiday Gift Guide

Click the image above for the full holiday guide in PDF format, or open the direct link.

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Chia seeds: not just for chia pets anymore!

Is it just me, or when you think of chia seeds do you first think of chia pets? Just me? In truth, it’s certainly a shame to waste this wonder food on a stoneware planter. The benefits of chia seeds as a supplement for humans have been increasing in popularity, but I haven’t seen treats for my dogs that include this superfood…until now.

Lincoln Bark, an exciting natural pet brand out of Chicago, has introduced two new lines of treats for your dog featuring chia seeds!

So, why are chia seeds a wonder food?

 Chia seeds: not just for chia pets anymore!

As you can see, that is a LOT of nutrients packed in those little seeds. Surely your dog would benefit from a treat so healthy. But then the million dollar question becomes: “if it is healthy, will my dog like it?”

Putting healthy treats to the test

Once again, Maddie and Izzie decided to take one for the team and taste test some treats. Lincoln Bark sent us a full sized pouch of the Treat Smart™ treats in the roasted peanut recipe (we also received samples of all the other flavors – chicken liver, wild salmon, and duck and pea). We also got to try the Sweet Little Butterpup™ treats in the pumpkin peanut butter recipe (also available in wild salmon, chicken liver, and oatmeal).

I’ve gotten increasingly picky (even if the dogs haven’t) over what I let them try in terms of treats. Aside from being “powered by chia,” the Lincoln Bark treats are produced from 100% natural human-grade ingredients sourced and baked in the US. The treats also contain no wheat, corn, artificial ingredients, or additives.

 Chia seeds: not just for chia pets anymore!Maddie loves all healthy things, so I had no doubt she would enjoy the Lincoln Bark treats and she did. The above picture is prior to any treats being opened – her least favorite time to take a picture.

 Chia seeds: not just for chia pets anymore!I was a bit surprised by Izzie’s reaction. Of course she loves most treats, but she can tell if you try to trick her into eating something too healthy for her, and she will turn up her nose. But Izzie loved the Treat Smart treats and kept trying to sneak a bit more. I had to explain to her that the feeding guidelines for the Treat Smart treats said that she got one of the soft treats per seven pounds of her body weight. Since she ate about 5 treats, and weighs less than 18 pounds, math clearly isn’t her strong suit. The Sweet Little Butterpup treats didn’t have feeding guidelines, but obviously moderation in accordance with your dog’s eating habits and activity level is always a good idea.

I liked the texture of the soft Treat Smart treats, as they’d be easy to break into smaller pieces for a very small dog (if needed), and they didn’t make crumbs. They seemed super fresh! The Sweet Little Butterpup treats have a harder texture, like a crunchy cookie, but were still a good size for smaller dogs. They had an awesome smell to them, like an oatmeal cookie. Maddie and Izzie gobbled them up, so there wasn’t any time for crumbs.

Both the Treat Smart and Sweet Little Butterpup treats are available via the Lincoln Bark website.

This post has a Disclosure Level of 2. was provided with the products mentioned above at no charge. As always, all opinions are our own.

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Fresh for all! #FridgeChallenge wrap up

This past week I’ve been sharing insights from my participation in the Freshpet Fridge Challenge. The challenge was established to bring attention to the importance of fresh foods in your dog’s diet. And while my dogs didn’t go without fresh food for the length of this challenge, I did, and let me just say, it really drove home the importance of fresh for all! Take a look.

freshpet billboard Fresh for all! #FridgeChallenge wrap up
This post has a Disclosure Level of 9.

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