Tag Archives: pet friendly travel

Trends at Global Pet Expo |thepupdiary.com

22 Mar

When we were asked to model at this year’s Global Pet Expo in Orlando, Florida we were so excited! Global is the pet industry’s largest annual trade show with 1,000 exhibitors, 4 miles of show floor to walk, and thousands of new products. The American Pet Products Association estimates that overall spending in the pet industry for 2014 could reach over $58 billion!! That sure is a lot of kibble!

Modeling for BH Pet Gear

Modeling for BH Pet Gear

Although we’re not professional trend spotters, we did notice several trends that we think will continue to grow. And most of our favorite companies from SuperZoo last summer exhibited at the show, too!

Here’s what we noticed at Global Pet Expo!

Rescue and Giving Back
Adoptable pups, companies that give back, and toys with a mission were all superstars at Global! Adoptable pups were front and center at Global with Florida Little Dog Rescue showing dozens of cuties at the event. DOGSFOOD DOG for DOG took home Best in Show in the dog category in the new product showcase. For every product they sell, they donate to a dog in need. Furry & Fabulous toys donate proceeds to help autism and Alzheimer’s.

Wow! Some very cool pet products in this category! We love iCPooch! It is a video chat system where you can have a 2-way video chat with your pup and deliver dog treat! It retails for $149.99 and is Made in the USA. PetChatz is another “greet and treat” machine that allows you to remotely interact with your pup using a smartphone.The iQ StarWalk attaches to a collar and helps track exercise. It also has a nightlight and syncs with smart phones to track data. Voyce is another wearable technology for dogs. It monitors dog vital signs to help get a complete picture of how your pup is doing. PetAcoustics Pet Tunes was one of the coolest products at the show — a preloaded device with soothing pet music.

Car Safety
We have been attending trade shows for years and have never seen so many products to help keep pups safe while riding in the car. (We think that is great!) We follow the Center for Pet Safety’s reports to see what they recommend. PupSaver, a small dog car safety seat, conducted their own testing and is a great option for dogs under 25 lbs. One caveat — please add a removable cover so we can wash it! 4pets, a Swiss company, had some unique car safety products including a mounted “penthouse system” for small dogs.

Grain-free, Gluten-free, and Natural Foods
We knew once gluten-free foods hit mainstream human foods, the trend would spill over to pet food. Mom still has to sort through all of our food samples and brochures. Our advice — read the label and buy American! Don’t fall for gimmicks . . .

How many beds does a pup need?
Just when we thought we had enough beds, (I think we have 8 in various forms and sizes!) we saw new and different must-have beds at Global. From Alcott doggy sleeping bags, to scented futons, to leather loungers, to Molly Mutt duvets stuffed with mom’s laundry — what will designers think of next to help us get some rest. Don’t they know we sleep in mom’s bed – BOL! Big-name mattress brands like Sealy have doggy beds, too!

Calming, Health, and Comfort Products
We modeled the new BH Pet Gear CalmCoat and we think it works! The soft coat gives us a hug and makes us feel safe. ZenPet has several calming products including a spray made from essential oils. We love the idea of Earth’s Balance Pill Paste to hide the bitter taste of pills! The Green Pet Shop had cool pet pads that we must get for this summer!

We loved all of the interactive toys and games – our favorite trend!

Game time!

Game time!

Visiting JFK’s final resting place | thepupdiary.com

23 Nov

The 624 acre cemetery, Arlington National Cemetery, is dog friendly. We headed there on a dreary day to take a long walk and visit gravesites. On this 50th anniversary of JFK’s assassination, we remember our walk in the rain and the prayer our mom said at his gravesite. Over 400,000 American servicemen and famous Americans are buried at the cemetery. The cemetery is open year round and well-behaved and leashed pups are invited to walk the grounds. It’s a beautiful place to visit if you tour the Washington, DC area.

Arlington National Cemetery - JFK gravesite

Arlington National Cemetery – JFK gravesite

Wordless Wednesday | thepupdiary.com

13 Nov

Party time! Essex Resort’s Top Dog Weekend.

Hanging out by the fire at the Essex Resort

Hanging out by the fire at the Essex Resort

Making biscuits with a Le Cordon Bleu chef | thepupdiary.com

6 Nov

It’s not every day that we get to make doggy biscuits with a Le Cordon Bleu trained chef! Well, truth be told, we weren’t even invited! But mom got to take a doggy biscuit class this past weekend at The Essex Resort & Spa and her teacher was a Le Cordon Bleu trained chef! The class was part of the resort’s Top Dog Weekend of fun!

Yummy biscuits!

Yummy biscuits!

Mom realized that making dog biscuits is not only very easy and fun, but also very inexpensive! And we love to save money whenever we can! We figured that each batch of the basic biscuits would yield about 3 dozen treats and cost less than $2 to make. Best of all, we actually love the biscuits and we tend to be picky treat eaters. The chef said that the added brewer’s yeast makes the biscuits extra special and appealing to us. All we have to say is YUM!

Basic Biscuits
2 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
1 cup chicken broth – low sodium
1/2 cup brewer’s yeast
3 tablespoons oil
1 to 2 teaspoons water if needed
Mix all ingredients in a bowl to form a dough. Roll out on lightly floured surface to 1/4 inch thickness. Use 2 or 3 inch cookie cutters to cut into shapes. Bake at 350 degrees on parchment lined pan for about 40 minutes. Let cool completely before storing. Store in airtight container for up to 2 weeks.

The Essex Resort & Spa rolls out the green carpet | thepupdiary.com

5 Nov

It seems there are always several lists with “dog-friendly” hotels and places to visit. Often they are expensive hotels with huge pet fees and very few amenities that we want. Earlier this fall The New York Times published an article about dog-friendly hotels and we were very intrigued by The Essex Resort & Spa’s Top Dog Weekend. An entire weekend devoted to the pups at a beautiful resort near Burlington, Vermont! We were hooked!

Doggy treats at the reception desk

Doggy treats at the reception desk

Getting There
We rented a car and drove the 6 hours from Midtown Manhattan to Essex, Vermont. We stopped at Dog Mountain in St. Johnsbury about 90 minutes east of Essex. We highly recommend this stop!! Dog Mountain is one of the most magical and beautiful places we have ever visited! The drive up to Essex is very beautiful with several stops along the way.

Top Dog Weekend
The Resort had several doggy activities planned for us beginning Friday night. The package deal for $499 included all activities, hotel for 2 nights, and the hotel pet fee (normally $45 per night per pet). We had a welcome reception Friday evening, a dog treat cooking class Saturday morning, a guided hike Saturday afternoon, and a grooming pawty Sunday morning before we left. Everyone at the hotel seemed to genuinely like pups! We got freshly baked doggy treats every day and we were given doggy toys and water bowls. Mom thought she was getting a bargain for all of the amenities and activities!! We will go back for sure!

Hanging by Lake Champlain

Hanging by Lake Champlain

The Hotel
The Essex Resort & Spa is an 18-acre property, so there is a lot to explore! We had a huge room with a separate bedroom and a full kitchen. The bell staff brought doggy treats straight to our room every day! We had really great take out food from the on-site restaurants. Mom said she needed more time to check out the spa, tennis courts, swimming pools, hot tub, zip line, gardens, and shopping! We did visit the chickens and looked at the bonfire with s’mores!

Side Trips
The Essex Outlet mall is walking distance from the resort. We loved the Orvis Outlet store! Burlington, VT is a 20 minute drive to the east. We enjoyed shopping on Church Street and found most of the shops to be dog friendly. There is also a beautiful walking path along the lake. Of course, Dog Moutain is a must see! Also, allow time for the cute shops and stops along the roads. The Resort can book a dog sitter ($15 an hour) and humans can check out the Ben & Jerry’s tour! The off-leash dog park is about 10 minutes from the resort by car. Next time we will stay for 3 nights since there is so much to do!!