Metro Pets

By Yasmin Jorge

The holidays are a time for giving and appreciating our friends and family, especially our loyal Fidos and beloved Fluffies. Today, about 63% of all U.S. households have a pet (Source: American Veterinary Medical Association) which translates to about 75 million dogs and about 85 million cats owned nationwide (Source: Pet Food Institute). Now that’s a lot of biscuits and catnip for our furry friends!

Personally, I’m grateful for those daily hikes with my pets that keep my body lean and mind balanced, and those licks and nuzzles just because I’m around. And while I don’t like my pets Greta and Sawyer grabbing and gobbling my kids’ snacks when opportunity strikes, they will be indulged this festive season. Here are a few gift ideas canines and felines will enjoy from us humans:

I’m thrilled to have found PersonalizationMall.com for unique customized products. I got two items for my dogs and am completely satisfied. The ruby red Bones© Stockings are well-crafted, super plush outside with nice dog bone appliques, each expertly embroidered, and lined with linen. And since these booties are generously sized at 14 x 9 inches, I’ll happily fill them with lots of yummy dog treats, toys and jewelry – oopps, wrong stocking. The Mice© Stockings are available for cats.

I also like the Jingle Bones© Dog Treat Tin, another sweet gift. The tin, high quality and durable, holds a fun, six-ounce assortment of dog treats. These biscuits, shaped like dogs, stars, circles, bones, etc., are made of all-natural ingredients, like rye flour, peanut butter, molasses, cheddar cheese, milk powder, sugar, and more. We both can feel good about our holiday desserts. I’ll stick to my home baked gingerbread men cookies, but my dogs will devour these. These dog treats came wrapped in paw-printed cellophane and tied with festive ribbons – overall a perfect presentation.

The name, PersonalizationMall.com says it all: I had the stockings and tins personalized with the names of my dogs, Greta and Sawyer. They did a wonderful job. I’m a happy customer and will return year-round when I need that extra special gift. (Please allow a tad more time to monogram when placing an order.) http://www.personalizationmall.com

Thanks to Hartz™ I have great treats and toys for those stockings. I’ve always relied on this brand, and Hartz doesn’t disappoint for the holidays. The products I selected do double duty: My dogs are having fun munching the play bones and chew toys while keeping their mouths healthier. The Chew ‘n Clean™ line offers bones in different sizes for a variety of breeds. Chewing is important to help remove tartar, keeps teeth clean, and exercises gum. Crunch ‘n Clean™ Dog Biscuits are another healthy snack for dogs that provide vitamins and minerals essential to their health. These biscuits contain Hartz’s patented ingredient DentaShield™ to block twice the tarter for cleaner chompers. While my pets don’t care about the health benefits, they love the tasty flavors of Hartz’ products, such as Braised Beef, Rotisserie Chicken, and Smokehouse and Country Bacon. For cats, Crunch ‘n Clean treats come in salmon and chicken flavors. “Buen provecho,” I say.


Finally, my one-year old American Dingo is having a ball with the Hartz’s Dura Play™ Squeaking Football. He is a high-energy frisky pup, and toys must withstand his rougher play and chewing. This football does the trick. Sawyer throws this into the air, jumps up to catch it, then throws it around many times. Before my kids are up in the morning, he grabs the football and thumps and bounces with it all over the house. He can get quite greedy with toys, so I may not be able to play fetch with him. Whatever, we’re happy to add this durable football to his toybox.

Hartz products are available at grocery stores, drug stores and mass merchandisers nationwide, including Wal-Mart, Kmart and Kroger. http://www.hartz.com

My dogs are fans of Crazy Critters™ by TeleBrands, a marketer of “As Seen on TV” products. Crazy Critters are stuffed toys, foxes and raccoons, without the stuffing. They look real and make squeaking noises, so dogs will think they are playing with fellow animals. They are ideal for both indoor and outdoor play — dirt can be removed by hand washing, and zero stuffing means no mess on floors and furniture. My 8-year old beagle-basset, who I thought lost interest in toys, keeps stealing and nibbling on her 22-inch fox while lounging in her crate. With its’ silky softness and head and tail squeakers, I’d join her.

Crazy Critters are great for dogs of all sizes. They are available at Walmart, CVS, Target, Bed Bath & Beyond, and many other national retailers, or visit http://www.buycrazycritters.com.

In tandem with decadent holiday treats, our pets deserve great products for optimal health and energy. Nordic Naturals™ Pet Cod Liver Oils and Omega-3™ Pet Soft Gel Capsules provide essential omega-3 fatty acids, an important supplement for dogs and cats, plus vitamins A and D. Omega-3 fatty acids are vital for healthy skin and hair, joints, brain, heart, eyes, weight management, and improved immunity.

A leading supplier of omega fish oil in the natural products industry, Nordic Naturals offers pure, fresh and flavorful oils and gels for convenient use and travel. I’ve been feeding my pups the cod liver oil in their morning kibble for a few weeks. I’m amazed that their fur feels velvety softer, and my beagle’s chronic flakiness is gone. They seriously enjoy the added oil in their breakfast, licking their empty bowls plus rims – for a long time. I should use this product year-round. I should try cod liver oil myself!

Exclusive to Beauty News NYC readers, K9Cuisine, a Nordic Naturals retailer, is offering a 20% discount off the Pet Cod Liver Oil through December. Visit http://www.k9cuisine.com/m-158-nordic-naturals.aspx and use the promotional code, “Nordic,” or call 866.919.2415 and say “Nordic” to get the discount.

Visit http://www.nordicnaturals.com/pet/ to shop online or find a NYC retailer near you.

Whether walking on snowy terrain or napping by a warm fireplace, dogs will look classy in the new co-branded collection of fine and sturdy dog collars and leads from Vineyard Vines™ by Mascot™. They feature Vineyard Vines signature fishbone or whale icon, woven onto jacquard ribbon and backed in durable cotton webbing. Collars and leashes can be hand washed with soap and water.

I admire both companies for their all-American products, so well crafted and durable. People and pets will be happy. Visit http://www.vineyardvines.com or http://www.mymascot.com to see the entire line and shop.

And if you don’t have a fireplace, the Pet-zzz Pad may do the trick to keep dogs and cats warm this Winter. It’s a novel concept: the pad heats up the animal’s bed to a vet-recommended 102º when he lies on it. It then shuts off when the critter gets off. Greta looked skeptical when I asked her to give the pad a try, giving me the familiar stare that says, “You crazy humans.” She did eventually settle in and was quite comfy and relaxed in the Pet-zzz Pad. I think Greta will get used to her cuddly pad. I bet she’d love it on our Bernhardt sofa, which she sneaks on to nap when we’re not around. Here’s to a long good life, my best canine lady!

Pet-zzz Pad is an American Kennel Club and Cat Fancier Associated branded heating mat that activates with a pet’s weight. It fits any size pet bed with a regular 12-inch pad for small to medium pets and a large 16-inch for medium to large pets. Visit PETCO or http://www.PetZZZPad.com

Happy holidays to all our furry best friends. Love, your humble humans.

Originally published December 2010
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