Post Date Jul 14

Taking Stock of Livestock


In the 1951 classic movie “Weekend with Father” actress Patricia Neal plays a widowed parent of two young boys going for the first time to a summer camp in upstate New York.  There is a scene where the boy’s super-fit camp counselor Don takes Ms. Neal and her two boys to a health-food restaurant for lunch where he extols the virtues of eating healthy, professes that eating meat is poison to one’s body and that his good health is because he exercises and “hasn’t eaten meat in years”.  He then proceeds to order for them a round of “green” drinks and soy burgers.  The boys would rather a coke and hamburger, and after complaining about the food that Don is prescribing that they eat – their mother hands them money under the table and makes an excuse for them to leave the heath-food restaurant to which upon escaping – the older boy announces that he’s going to buy himself  “some poison with lots of onions”… meaning a hamburger and hotdog.

This scene in the movie is crazy interesting because of the fact that in 1951 there was obviously enough common knowledge back then to the benefits of “health food”.  This was even before there was the onslaught of chemicals used on farms, when most of the produce back then would have been considered “organic” in today’s terms, and the factory farm industry was in it’s infancy.

Fast forward 60 years later and we are still arguing whether it is healthy or not to eat meat.   We now also have to consider the inhumane practices of the current factory farm animal industry in addition to debating the moral aspect of consuming animals put forth by animal right activists and vegetarians.

Because of the ability to acquire news and information more so than ever before through the internet and news media outlets – it has led me to become very leery as well as concerned about consuming meat and meat products because of  inhumane treatment of animals on factory farms and the overall health of these animals.   Fortunately for the animals, as more consumers become aware of the horrific conditions that exist in this industry, changes are happening.

Whistle blowers photograph and report what is actually going on in some of these factories and slaughterhouses.  Large corporations like Bon Appetit Management Company in California that run over 400 college and corporate cafes state that they plan to buy only gestation-stall-free pork and cage-free eggs by 2015.  Fast food giants like McDonalds, Wendys, and Burger King tell their animal product suppliers that the chickens need more space and the beef needs to come from suppliers that audit using a scoring system that was developed years ago by Temple Grandin.    All these  developments and hopefully many more changes in our buying habits will force growers, suppliers and buyers to alter and correct the inhumane conditions and unhealthy practices of hormones used to make animals grow faster, and antibiotics used routinely so that the animals can tolerate cramped areas.  All of which allows factories to make as much money as possible at the expense of the health of the animals and people who consume them.

Temple Grandin is a Professor of Animal Science at Colorado State University whose insights into animal behavior and innovations in livestock handling have revolutionized food-animal welfare.  Autistic as a child, she developed her special sensory perception skills into a successful career as a livestock-handling equipment designer – one of very few in the world.  In addition, she has designed humane slaughterhouse facilities in which half of the cattle is handled in the US.  Ms. Grandin admits that she does eat meat and is quoted to say “Nature is very harsh… there is nothing about how nature kills things that is kind.  When cattle are raised right, they have a really good life.  When they go to the meat plant now they just walk up the chute… it’s no more stressful than going to the veterinary chute”.  This is because she designed a system where the cattle go single file through a curved chute which in practice is their natural behavior, and therefore, they are not stressed out.

However, there is still so much work to be done to change the culture on how our animal factory farms treat livestock.  Until this happens, our health is compromised with consuming animals that are sick, suffering and unhealthy because of the  conditions that they are raised in and slaughtered, because they are fed GMO and GE feed, and loaded up with artificial growth hormones and antibiotics.  The FDA is working on new rules and regulations to stop drugs being used to make animals grow faster – but they should go further and only allow antibiotic use when animals are sick or clearly in danger of getting sick and not just routinely.   Maybe the rules should also require farmers to get a veterinarian’s approval before using most of these drugs.

I feel strongly that it is our consumer right to know how and where our food is produced so that we can make informed buying choices.  In addition to supporting the labeling of all GMO and GE foods – there should also be a better system for labeling meat products considering the many important health issues and the welfare of the millions of factory farmed cows, pigs, chickens and turkeys in addition to dairy farming.  Every time you and your family eat any meat or meat products that are not labeled properly with certification of “Animal Welfare Approved”, “Certified Humane”, or “Organic”, and the farm where the animal was raised is not identified – then you are basically the guinea pig when it comes to compromising your health by eating meat.

Currently there are just a few organizations that certify meat products and unfortunately a meat producer can say anything they want on a label to mislead or misdirect the consumer.  So it is really up to oneself to do the research and be aware of where the meat you purchase comes from and how it got to you.

There is a nonprofit group out of Washington DC called “Animal Welfare Approved”.  They certify products from over 400 farms and they require all animals have outdoor space.  Another is “Certified Humane” by Humane Farm Animal Care in Virginia, and “American Humane Certified” by the American Humane Association in Washington DC.

I have cut back considerably on eating meat and meat products.  I try to only eat meat after I am able to confirm that the chicken or turkey is pasture or free range raised without antibiotics and hormones, and the beef or pork comes from small farms that are raised without drugs and slaughtered humanely.

If this is tricky for human consumption, think how scary the animal products and animal by-products that are sold to rendering plants and then re-sold to pet food manufacturers that do not follow stringent quality practices.  I am an advocate of the raw diet for dogs and buy from a really great reputable company “Aunt Jeni’s Homemade” for dogs and cats.   Aunt Jeni uses only meats and poultries from animals that are free-range, grass-fed, humanely raised and killed, and contain no added growth hormones or antibiotics.  The prepared food is a stand-alone, complete and balanced meal that requires no supplementation.  In addition to the high-quality meats – they use only the freshest, highest quality whole-food ingredients from eco-friendly farms.  I highly recommend this product and their diets for your pets.

Milk and milk products from dairy cows are also coming under scrutiny because a dairy cow can only produce milk after it has given birth, and therefore these cows are constantly impregnated and their young are quickly taken away and either used for veal or if female will suffer the same life as it’s mother.   So I have also cut back on dairy consumption, and only buy organic milk products.  I have taken to sheep’s milk yogurt but I feed my dog organic cow’s milk yogurt and I can’t deny my nephew an ice cream cone now and then.   My food guru friend Lois has stopped all dairy, and as I mentioned previously, makes her own almond milk to use in place of cow’s milk products.  I recently found out that she is now making her own almond milk yogurt!

With over 300 million people living in this country – it isn’t any wonder why factory farming of animals is a huge industry and also a major concern for the animal’s health and well-being as well as our own health.  I am hopeful that these issues will continue to be on the radar of consumers so we can push for more changes by being selective in what we are purchasing and buy only products that are safely and humanely raised, processed, certified and labeled.


– For more information on Temple Grandin visit:

– To learn more about meat and dairy product certification visit:


Aunt Jeni’s Home Made – Manufacturers of homemade, organic diets, treats, and supplements:

Photo Credit – David Ganz

Until Next Time…

Peace and Love, dogOdog











Post Date May 26

Trouble and Hope in the Land of (Almond) Milk and Honey

5516500-oliverMatsuo Basho – a famous Japanese poet of the 17th century said in his “Record of a Travel-Worn Satchel” that “all who have achieved real excellence in any art possess one thing in common, that is, a mind to obey nature, to be one with nature, throughout the four seasons of the year”.

One such “artist” was Rachel Carson a marine biologist, conservationist and author of the book “Silent Spring” who’s work brought attention to the environmental problems that she believed were caused by synthetic pesticides in the early 1960’s and was then ridiculed by the chemical companies of that time.  She is credited with advancing the environmental movement that led to the banning of DDT and other pesticides, and inspiring the grass-root movement that helped jumpstart the US Environmental Protection Agency.

Fast forward to today where globally we are still killing ecosystems from every possible angle with herbicides, pesticides and insecticides.  The latest is the massive global honeybee die-off.  This can have a devastating impact on our food security since it is estimated that honeybees are responsible for pollinating over 90 food crops worldwide.  Scientists studying the massive global bee die-off have unearthed a slew of evidence on the devastation across the food chain caused by the most widely used pesticide on earth – “neonicotinoid” derived from the tobacco plant.

In addition to pesticides, everything from intensive and monoculture farming (farming one type of crop over large areas of land) pests, weather, the use of insecticides and herbicides, GMOs and GE food crops poisoned systemically, and large commercial bee businesses that feed their hive with GMO corn-syrup or sugar, use chemicals in the hives and truck thousands of hives around the country following monoculture seasonal crops – these are all stresses contributing to the killing off of honeybees.  The  European Food Safety Authority imposed a two year ban on neonicotinoids in which studies have shown are the largest contributor to honeybees with “Colony Collapse Disorder”.

Over the last six years, with a third of all honeybees vanishing each winter and over 40% this past year – beekeepers are saying that we are now on the brink of not being able to pollinate all our food crops.  The United States has yet to impose any bans here but hopefully with all the information coming out about this serious problem – our elected officials will do the right thing and follow suit.  Studies also show that once neonicotinoids enter the water supply they wipe out dragonflies, snails and other waterborne life and the few remaining species that survive are left so toxic that they kill the birds that eat them.

Not unlike the turn of last century’s Arts and Crafts Movement which was a cultural backlash against the Industrial Revolution – this new century has brought us a new wave of environmentally conscience small and organic farmers who are working in collective ways to save our food sources and ecosystems.

In speaking with Oliver Cohen – artisan and bee whisperer of Aloha HoneyBee in Kauai, Hawaii – he stated that most of these big commerical bee companies are “re-queening” every year with the same genetic stock in their breeding which can make the colony weak in addition to the other stresses mentioned above.

Oliver (pictured above holding a honeybee swarm) is lucky that he lives in a part of the world where there are various types of flowers and crops year round that help keep hives healthy and thriving.  Being a self-proclaimed student of American agriculture, history and the environment, and is “always searching for the truth” – Oliver started his adventure with honeybees with just one call about a hive on his neighbor’s property in Kauai that needed removal.  True to his nature, Oliver carefully removed the hive and brought it back to his property to tend to it and Aloha HoneyBee was born.  He subsequently contacted local pest control, tree trimmers and landscapers in his area to let them know that he would be happy to take away any hives that are on their client’s property that they wanted removed.  He has collected over 40 hives in a little over a year and had he not – he said that last summer at least 30 hives would have been destroyed.

Oliver boasts that what makes his colonies healthy besides the fact that he doesn’t use any chemical or treatments for pests, and follows strict organic principals of beekeeping – that his bees are feral in that they are of different genetics which makes them less prone to being wiped out by one type of disease or pests.   Aloha HoneyBee’s honey is raw and organic – never heated and only lightly filtered.  Oliver is in the process of designing his label and packaging, and plans to sell it in Hawaii but I am hoping for his success to be great so that I can buy it stateside.

During my conversation with Oliver about the plight of the honeybees, the subject of the American almond growers came up as they also have been hit hard over the last few years because of the problem with not enough honeybees to pollinate almond trees in California’s 400 mile long Central Valley where just about all domestic almonds are grown.

I am a major fan of nuts, particularly almonds, and everyday i eat a large handful of organic raw almonds that i soak overnight in lemon water.  About a year or so ago, I came to learn from my friend and nutritional guru Lois Gore that the “raw organic almonds” that i was buying in the grocery store were in fact not raw but pasteurized.  In 2007, a law mandated pasteurization for all US almonds after outbreaks of salmonella bacteria were traced to almonds in 2001 and 2004.  This forced the pasteurization of most domestic almonds by using either a steam treatment or fumigation with toxic propylene oxide PPO.

So be very careful to read all the label information when buying almonds and steer clear of any PPOs (even though some may not be labeled as such)!  Unfortunately, both these processes tend to kill the “live” quality of almonds but there is a way around buying truly raw almonds that are not pasteurized.  You can find them on the internet and order them from abroad or buy bulk quantities directly from some US growers.  I highly recommend the organic truly raw almonds from Briden Wilson Farm in Arbuckle, Ca. or Bremner Farms in Chico, CA.

For many health-conscientious people, almond milk is becoming a replacement choice for hormone-heavy dairy milk.  Today’s cows produce double the amount of milk they did just 40 years ago and that’s because of a GE synthetic hormone called “recombinant bovine somatotropin” or rBST.  This synthetic hormone is banned in many countries because it is linked to prostrate, breast and colon cancers.  However, it is still legal here, although many dairies are being pressured to abandon it.  It is important to try to buy organic milk whenever possible or try almond milk as a replacement.

My friend Lois who makes her own organic almond milk, discovered “easy-how-to” videos on YouTube.  She made me a two page print out of easy step-by-step instructions to make home-made almond milk, and I will be happy to share and send you a copy if you are interested.

In closing, I urge everyone not to use any chemicals on your lawn and in your gardens, and if you find a beehive on your property – please contact a local beekeeper for safe removal… just make sure whoever removes it does not plan to destroy it.  And please support your small, local and organic farmers and growers this summer!



-For more information about the plight of the honeybees visit: 

-To see more photos of Oliver Cohen and Aloha HoneyBee go to his facebook page:  AlohaHoneyBee

-For more information about the pasteurization of almonds visit:

-For more information about the health benefits of almond milk visit:

-To order organically grown truly raw almonds contact Briden Wilson Farms:

or Bremner Farms:


-dogOdog Organics  100% Organic Snack-Treat-Enjoy Biscuits are made with Certified USDA Organic Honey.  Play Safe, Treat Well and Have Fun!             

Until next week…

Peace and Love, dogOdog






Post Date May 19

The ABCs of GMOs

Luke & Basha

It is interesting that when the subject of GMOs (Genetically Modified Organisms) and GE (Genetically Engineered) food comes up in conversation – how many people really don’t know too much about it.

Today’s controversy surrounding GMOs and GE food is partly around labeling or for that matter – the lack of labeling.  Vermont is the first state to make some headway when it’s House of Representatives passed a bill on May 10th of this year requiring food containing GMOs to be labeled.  This is the furthest any such legislation has made it through the legislative process in the US.  Unfortunately, this bill would exempt animal products including meat and dairy even though livestock are often fed genetically engineered feed.

Last year California’s Prop. 37 brought to vote whether to label all GMO foods.  Companies like Monsanto and Hershey Co. contributed 44 million dollars for the campaign against Prop. 37 that was narrowly defeated.  In spite of this defeat – it was a close vote as Prop. 37 was able to gain approximately 47% of the vote.

Similar bills have been introduced in Arizona, Connecticut, Colorado, Illinois, Iowa, Maine, Minnesota and New Mexico this year.  Food and Water Watch and other organizations are encouraging supporters to petition for national GE labeling laws to give us the “right to know” as to whether or not foods contain GMOs.

Frustrated by Monsanto’s bullying of governments and farmers in the US and abroad – tens of thousand of activists around the world are gathering on Saturday May 25, 2013 for the “March Against Monsanto”.  This was started in early February of this year on a facebook page of the same name and is instrumental in organizing the events.

Although I buy organic produce whenever i can – I personally became concerned about hidden GMOs in food that I was ordering out in restaurants, and fortunately found an insightful article on Tips for Avoiding GMOs When Dining Out on the website Healthy Child/Healthy World.  It said that the biggest and highest risk ingredients are corn and soy as the vast majority of the soybeans and corn grown today are genetically modified.  Just think of all the food products that contain some form of corn or soy.  Soda is usually sweetened with high fructose corn syrup and diet drinks are typically sweetened with aspartame which is an artificial sweetener derived from GMOs.  Wheat and potatoes are now becoming suspect as is non-organic meat because it is likely raised on GMO feed.  Fast food chains and pet food products are probably the most saturated with GMO and GE foods.

Most hawaiian papaya grown in Hawaii is currently a GMO fruit and i have seen GMO labeled navel oranges in the supermarket.  Right behind these are apples.  The Canadian company Okanagan Specialty Fruits has been in review by US Regulatory Agencies since 2010 for GE Granny Smith and Golden Delicious apples that they are calling “Arctic”.  This company of course is against labeling but says it will voluntarily identify their apples with a sticker that reads “Arctic”.  So unless you know what “Arctic” apples are – you will not know that these could potentially harm you, your kids and/or your pets.

Without the proper labeling and long term testing of these food crops and animal products – no one really knows if this stuff is really safe to eat.  The FDA in internal documents that became public suggests that these products could pose potentially serious allergenic and toxic reactions among consumers.  At least with conventional food – people know what they are allergic to but with GMO and GE you don’t know because the foods are not labeled and not enough scientific studies have been done.

The American Academy of Environmental Medicine (AAEM) doesn’t think GM foods are safe.  The Academy said in a report that “several studies indicate serious health risks associated with GM food including infertility, immune problems, accelerated aging, faulty insulin regulation and changes in major organs and the gastrointestinal system”.  The AAEM asked physicians to advise patients to avoid GM foods.

A friend told me that she would prefer to buy organic produce and meats but that it is just too expensive for her family. However, she shouldn’t be kept in the dark when she shops for conventional produce vs. GMOs because of these big businesses and their strong lobbyists in our government.  Labeling is crucial not only for our health but also because it is our right to know.  There is a label system in place for produce as follows:  for organic produce – the code is five digits that begins with #9, conventional produce is four digits usually starting with #1 or #4, and a GMO product is five digits that starts with #8.

If you have a dog and/or cat and feed them a commerically produced diet – think of all the implications of this not only in their food but also in their snacks and treats.  In helping a friend do some research who needed to change her dog’s kibble brand because of Natura Pet Food brands being recalled recently due to salmonella – she asked me my thoughts on another brand.  In reading the ingredients we saw that it contained sugar beet pulp.

Now most people would think “beets” as in the vegetable beets that we eat – but they are not.  Sugar beets are grown and used specifically for sucrose, and did you know that Monsanto owns 95% of the sugar beet market with their genetically engineered Round Up Ready Sugar Beets!  I don’t think there is any reason in your dog’s diet for corn, soy or sugar beet pulp.  This stuff is filler and killer!  If you want an easy and great resource for finding out how your dog food brand rates on a scale of 1 to 5 – go on the Dog Food Advisor website.  You just type in the brand and name of the product, and they give you a rating and the reasons for the rating.

By the way and if you didn’t know – this company Natura Pet that has the salmonella recall produces  Innova, Evo, California Naturals, Healthwise, Mother Nature and Karma.  If you or anyone you know is feeding their dog(s) these brands – please tell them to stop and find a healthier and safer choice.

Reading labels and educating yourself on what is exactly in the products you buy is so important and so easy to do with our friend “google”.  Recently i found two great replacement products for Theo because i was not “feeling good” about some of the ingredients in his teeth-cleaning pads and a joint supplement with MSM that i was giving him.  If interested, I give more details on these products in FYI after my TIPS below.

In closing – I recently read that when Monsanto first introduced the gene for seeds for these GE crops (sugar beets, corn, soybeans, alfalfa, etc.) they argued that the gene would let farmers cut down the use of toxic pesticides and herbicides on their crops.  But these herbicide-resistant crops are actually breeding “superweeds” and possibly “superworms” that have evolved to overpower the chemicals in their seeds.  So now farmers have started applying even heavier doses of the chemicals to combat these new strain of pests.   Because of this, Monsanto is reaping benefits from it’s own failure.  Recently the company announced high profits largely due to a 37% increase in herbicide sales.


Food and Water Watch Website:

Healthy Child/Healthy World – 6 Tips for Avoiding GMOs When Dining Out:

Dog Food Advisor Website:

FYI – Great Dog Products:

I had been using DDS Dental Wipes after brushing Theo’s teeth or for a quick cleaning that I purchased at my local pet store.  I decided recently to look for a product that didn’t contain any chemicals.  I discovered a great product that was not available locally but was able to find it on  Fast and Fresh Dental Swipes from TrueBlue – “An all natural botanical blend (including peppermint, parsley and baking soda) for a healthy mouth and fresh breath”.  This is great product not only because of it’s natural ingredients but because the pads are a large size that easily and securing wraps around your finger for easy cleaning and has little bumps on the pad for a little extra friction.   Theo and I love this product:

Also, I purchased through my local veterinarian a product called Dasuquin with MSM from Nutramax which is a “joint health supplement” that contains Glucosamine and Chondroitin.  I needed to supplement Theo’s diet with MSM to help him with inflammation due to his FSF (Familial Sharpei Fevers).   Theo didn’t have any adverse reactions to this product initially but i found that after a few weeks later he was constantly licking his feet which is a sign of an allergy or allergic reaction.   In reviewing everything that i was giving him – I discovered that this product contained soy protein isolate and soy lecithin.   Not Good!  I know Sharpei should not have soy products.  I did some research and found that these are found in many of our food products, and are not good for us.   I just never read the really fine print to see what else was in this supplement besides the three main ingredients that i mentioned above.  Fortunately, i discovered a great replacement from NaturVet called Glucosamine DS plus MSM & Chondroitin that I found available on for less money than the Dasuquin and without any soy additives.  Also, it has some other good stuff in it like Fish Oil and Flax Seed.  If you are looking for a great all natural  product to help with support of hip and joint function and flexibility and other inflammatory issues – I highly recommend the NaturVet product:                                                                                                      

Until next week…

Peace and Love – dogOdog








Post Date May 12


theo to swim img_1250.jpg ~1. (2)


My sister’s dog Ruby who is an 8 year old Chocolate Lab will jump into any body of water with such joy, grace, and abandonment while my dog Theo (pictured above) watches from the sidelines with awe at his cousin’s ability but also with frustration and extreme hesitation because as much as he wants to join her – he will NOT go in!

When Theo was around 6 month’s old  he was given a swim session with Randy Handwerger of S.S. Aqua Dog – hence the photo and life jacket above.  She said that he did well and can swim nicely but I think given the choice he would never try it ever again.  Sharpei literally hate water and Theo is true to form.

Many dogs do not love swimming as inherently as Ruby so it’s probably a really  good idea to “teach” them the basics especially if you have a pool, take them on a boat or bring them to the bay, beach or a lake.


Randy, who i mentioned above, is among a fine group of people who have unfortunate things happen in their life and somehow turn it into something very good and positive.  Years ago when I met Randy – she had a big, sweet dog Sylvester who was around 9 years old.  Around that time, he developed Degenerative Myelopathy which is like  Multiple Sclerosis in humans.  She thought to include swimming laps in a pool in addition to his regular exercise to help build strength but she needed to be able to continue this program for him throughout the winter months.

As the universe would have it and with help of friends – Randy built him a heated swim spa that she could use year round.  She was able to swim Sylvester as well as help other dogs swim away their aches and pains, and “Viola” – S.S. Aqua Dog was born!

Randy’s training includes teaching dogs of all ages how to swim and safely get out of the water, swimming dogs for exercise as well as for arthritic and hip dysplastic issues.  In addition, she swims dogs recouping from surgery and ACL tears.  Randy is a licensed Canine Therapeutic Massage and Reiki Practitioner.  She knows first hand the value and benefits of swimming and because of it she believes that her dog’s life was extended way beyond his prognosis.  ALSO – teaching a dog to swim and safely get out of the water can be the difference between life or death for a dog in the water.


Unlike dogs – people are not born with the skills to instinctively know how to swim. John Ryan Sr. the Coordinator of Hamptons Life Guard Association together with his son John Jr. who is chief of the East Hampton Town Life Guards said that 40% of kids at the age of 9 to 10 can not tread water.

Now that is a big deal out here where we have miles and miles of beaches and almost 5 out of every 10 homes have pools.   In addition, think about all the private and public pools throughout this country that are jammed packed with kids for the most part from June through September, and add that to the warmer regions where kids have access to pools and beaches year round.   Knowing how to swim is a big deal!

There is a really interesting documentary in the works that is being shot in and around the town of East Hampton that is being produced by Mae Mougin of Southampton called “WATERPROOF”.  It is almost 3 years in the making and is a feature length film that will tell the story of Mr. Ryan and his son John and their amazing effort not only to teach kids of all ages how to swim and water safety but also the intense training and grooming of our town’s life guards to be the “firemen of the sea”.

This story shines a light on the hard work, dedication and training involved in saving lives out here with 12 life guard stands manned by 60 guards who make over 1200 rescues a summer.  In addition – there are volunteers who go through rigorous training to become part of the Volunteer Ocean Rescue.  They take the calls from 911 for beach goers or any other people in distress using the many unprotected beaches, bays and ocean.

We really owe a tremendous amount of gratitude to the men and women everywhere who dedicate their lives to develop swimming programs for our kids and for their live-saving careers that help save our lives.


Lynn Sherr – author of “Swim: Why We Love The Water” says:  “Swimming is my salvation – it stretches by body beyond earthly limits, helps to soothe every ache and caress every muscle”.  In an interview, she said that one of her swimming buddies claims that her regular sprints back and forth across the pool keeps her sane!

In a NY Times article by Jane Brody – she writes that swimming can be enjoyed regardless of age and especially ideal for arthritis or knee and hip joint problems.   Ms. Brody also states that it helps to preserve stamina, cardiac and respiratory function, muscle tone and flexibility as one ages.

I know this to be a fact even though i am not a swimmer.   My mother-in-law who is in her late 70’s and is an avid year-round swimmer looks amazing with good health, posture and poise of someone many years younger.

Mae – the tireless producer of the documentary “Waterproof” is benefiting from swimming also.  Mae swam as a kid, and as a teenager trained for the Life Guard Swim Test when she was a camp counselor.  She took it up again a little later in her life doing endurance swimming when she was living in Greece.  But I think it was many years since Mae had been back “in the water”…

I saw Mae recently after not seeing her for a few months over the winter, and asked her what she’s been doing because she looked great and had a glow about her.  She told me because of working on the film with the Ryans that they convinced her to get back in… she is now swimming with the lifeguards and she looks amazing!


1.  To learn more about Randy Handwerger at S.S. Aqua Dog check out her website:

2.  For more information about the documentary “Waterproof” visit the following:

until next week…

Peace and Love – dogOdog









Post Date May 6

The Birth of

Introducing the 2013 blog birth of and inviting you to share in it’s mission:

Creating a collective environment by providing a forum to explore, educate and discuss inspiring and thought-provoking ideas about the physical, mental and spiritual health and wellness of you and your dog with an emphasis on supporting the rights and humane treatment of animals, and to enrich and protect the well-being of our planet.

Is this a lofty aspiration and goal?  Maybe… as with anything new – sometimes you have to just try it out and see where it goes.  Hopefully, a post or two will take on a life of it’s own over time, and others will morph into something else…’s initial plan for upcoming posts will include diverse guest bloggers from time to time as well as reporting and following cultural movements and current news stories that are at the heart of’s mission.  It is also important to use this site as a platform to support individuals and organizations that are working so tirelessly to help make this a better world for all of us, our domesticated pets, farm animals and wildlife.  Their stories, inspiration, and progress will be featured occasionally but it is important to state here that it will not be our policy to promote these posts with pictures or images of suffering.  We all know by now what that looks like so there is no need to keep shocking our hearts and senses when the written word can tell the story.

In addition – plans to include TIPS at the end of each blog that will put a spotlight on great products discovered and/or special people doing creative work that you might need, inspire you or that you just find interesting.

So here is dogOdog’s first TIP:  Austin Scott of Austin Scott Creative

I first met Austin 4 years ago in Savannah, Georgia when he was finishing up his Masters degree in Advertising at SCAD (Savannah College of Art & Design).

At that time, I was looking for someone to help me do the “back of the house” computer stuff for the birthing of dogOdog Organics, and I was very fortunate that Austin was recommended to me.  He worked with me on all the creative and technical aspects of my packaging for dogOdog Organics, and once the products and packaging were ready – he worked closely with me in developing my vision for the website and built it for me from the ground up.  We kept in touch over the years, and anytime I have new projects that need his techy help – he always avails himself to dogOdog even though he is quite busy with his Art Director position in Chicago and his own design company.

Austin reminds me of Clark Kent – mild mannered, laid back and really easy to work with but as soon as Austin takes the job in his hands – he turns into Superman!  Austin is an extremely smart, talented and creative guy.  You can find out more about Austin’s work at his website:

Thank you Austin for all your hard work, patience and dedication in helping dogOdog Organics and  go from inside my head and heart to being open for business!

In closing – invites you to enjoy, engage and to share in this journey together by subscribing on this page so that you can be notified of each new posting by email.

Peace and Love, dogOdog


Post Date Apr 27

Little Theo

Theo – My Muse and Inspiration →

Feel good about the well-being of your dog and planet.

dogOdog Organics