Swimming Dog and Summer Fun

Swimming dogs
Quincy in the Pool

Who doesn’t like a dip in the pool on a hot summer day?  Some dogs love the water, some not so much and others are just not very good at swimming.  Come on, you are thinking, all dogs love the water.   Actually,  not all dogs know how to swim.  I learned this when I took a pet first aide/ CPR class with the American Red Cross.  The instructor told us that CPR is mostly used to resuscitate dogs in cases of near drowning.

Goldens and Labs seem to be made for the water.  Show them a puddle and I’ll show you a wet dog.   Collies, with their heavy coat can become waterlogged or Bulldogs with their heavy bodies can sink like bricks. One day a friend of mine called me to tell me she almost drowned her dog Petey.   Petey is her  80 lb Pit Bull mix that they decided to throw in the pool on a hot day.  Petey sank to the bottom of the pool like a ton of bricks.  Luckily, they were able to get him out of the pool.  So think first before tossing your dog in the pool to cool off.  And besides if your doesn’t like a bath they probably are not going to like the pool. Continue reading “Swimming Dog and Summer Fun”

Dog Tales: Stories from our Rescue Dogs

I decided to share some stories of our dogs, all rescues.  It started with Spike in 1999 and our newest is Penny Lane.  I was originally going to try and get this down by writing about each dog, one at a time.   Now I have decided that I have too much to say about everyone and that it would make more sense to just share stories at my whim.  So here we start with Louie G and Walter, numbers 2 and 3.  I hope you get of sense of each of each of these amazing animals, where they came from, their travels through life, to emerge in a place that is loving and safe.  Forever.

Our Gang
Louie G, Walter, Myself

Continue reading “Dog Tales: Stories from our Rescue Dogs”

Dog Parks

Dog Park Etiquette

dog park play
dogs playing

Dog parks. You either love them or hate them.  We are very fortunate in St Pete to have so many places we can take our dogs to play, from North Shore Park to the beach at Fort DeSoto.

The ideal of the dog park is of course, dogs having fun with enough room to run, to fetch balls, play frisbee and socialize with other dogs and people.  The up side for the owners is  you get to socialize with other dog lovers and meet their dogs.
The not so ideal; dogs getting into fights, people get knocked over by running dogs, your dog gets sick after being at the park, owners who ignore their dog while it bullies the other dogs, stepping in…..you get it.
If everyone steps up and follows a few simple guidelines we can all have a fun and safe time at the park.

*Follow the rules. Most dog parks have posted rules.

*Healthy dogs only. Kennel cough, mange and other health problems can spread like      wild fire in an open dog community.

*Be sure your dog is current on their vaccinations.

*No puppies under 4 months of age. They aren’t fully immunized and are at a higher risk of contracting diseases.

*Don’t bring small children. Dogs running fast have been known to knock over an adult, imagine what could happen to a child.

*Remove the leash as soon as you enter the off leash area. Mixing leashed and unleashed dogs can cause aggression.

*Limit your use of toys or food treats to avoid dog on dog conflict.

*NO female dogs in heat, that combined with unneutered males is asking for trouble.

*Bring only as many dogs as you can manage. The typical ratio is one human to 2-3 dogs.

*Do not allow dogs to form loose packs. There is a potential for serious problems including ganging up on weaker dogs and possibly attacking them.

*Be realistic about your dogs play potential. Not all dogs enjoy playing with others, some dogs prefer to sniff every blade of grass. If your dog is not having a good time it’s time to go.

Dog park
Squirrel Hunting a favorite dog park activity

*Supervise your dog, be prepared to interrupt inappropriate play.

*Clean up after your dog.

Stay aware of your surrounding and your dog and everyone will have a enjoyable experience.

For a complete list of dog parks in Pinellas and St Pete please follow these links:  Pinellas County Dog Parks and St Petersburg Dog Parks

Why Hire a Professional Pet Sitter – Dog Walking & Pet Sitting Pros


IMG_2201I started my pet sitting business in 2004. It’s been a great business for me. I have learned so much about owning and running a business and so much about the pets in my care and how to handle many situations. I consider myself a professional, although there are many people who would not consider this profession, professional.

While many of my clients are excited and happy to know I have expertise with pets there are those who think this is a job for the neighborhood kids, neighbors, friends, family or other employees. So why should you choose a professional? Continue reading “Why Hire a Professional Pet Sitter – Dog Walking & Pet Sitting Pros”

Runs With Dogs

Original running buddies
Joe and Hallie my 1st running buds

I have offered running as a service for a few years.  I have only had a few people interested, that is until recently.  Since I only run in the morning it keeps me from getting overly ambitious but there are mornings I can put  in 9 miles.

Running dogs requires the runner to have some knowledge of dogs and first aide and they need to help educate the owners regarding whether their dog is a candidate for running.

First thing to consider would be the breed.  Some dogs are born runners, like Vizsla, long distance runners or Jack Russells, short distance runners.  But perhaps your Boston Terrier or French Bulldog with their short snouts are prone to overheat and would not make good running companions.  Heavy coated dogs like a Husky might not be well suited to hotter climates like Florida.  Do some research on your breed.

The age of the dog is the next factor.  If you have a puppy as a running companion you may have to wait awhile.  Running young dogs could damage their joints while they are growing.  Depending on the breed you could start running as young as 8 months but start slow and easy.  Larger breed dogs develop at a slower rate and may need to start running at an older age.  The best thing is to consult with your veterinarian.

Hot pavement can burn your dogs pads.  Look for shaded, grassy areas or run before or after the sun is high.  Burnt pads are a painful experience for your dog and an expensive one for you.

Hot Pavement
Hot Pavement

Do you know the warning signs of overheating are?

  • The dog’s tongue will be long, hanging far out, it will flatten out and seem wide as the dog tries to cool down.
  • The tongue and gums will become dark red
  • Fast or rapid panting.
  • If your dogs eyes become glazed or the dog starts to loose coordination it is time to pull over,  find some shade and let the dog rest.  Put cool not cold water on their head, neck and belly, offer small amounts of water. A dog that has overheated should be treated by your veterinarian

Summer is here so we need to be extra careful for our running buddies.  I have run with dogs that never seemed to want to stop or at the other end is my Walter, who is not so fond of the heat and will just lay down and not move.  That boy is no fool.

If you would like to get your dog started with running please contact me to set up a consultation.  Calling All Dogs   We also offer dog walking for the more mellow of our companions.




Welcome Lisa

We wanted to take this opportunity to welcome Lisa Bambace as our office manager. After 11 years of running this business by myself, I am so excited to have found someone who has my passion for animals that mirrors my own and a sense for business that far exceeds mine.  I look forward to working with Lisa and continuing to grow Calling All Dogs.