Saturday, March 10, 2012

Read and win! Prize packages for answering dog behavior questions

I hope everyone's ready for the chance to win some cool dog stuff, because I've finally gotten my act together and arranged prize packages for the kick off of this week's contest.
In short, I'll be giving away different packages for the first person who emails me ( with the answer to a variety of dog behavior questions that I'll post over the next few weeks. Read more about the contest (and how to give yourself an edge on winning) in my post, Read and win — answer questions to get cool dog gear.
And don't forget that last week's posts were a primer for the first few questions I'll ask as well.
Those posts are:
Behavior 101: Shaping vs. Training, Part I
Behavior 101: Shaping vs. Training, Part II 
If the dog likes you, I like you

After tallying up the give-away gear that's been amassing under my desk, I decided to make one change to the contest — rather than have a specific prize package for a specific question, I'm posting information about all the available prizes in this post. Each winner will get to choose which package he or she wants.

Without further ado, here are the prizes:

This prize is no longer available!
Prize package #1
Prize package #1 — Food & water bags for travel by Planet Dog
Made for traveling with your pooch, these two bags are handy for trips to just about anywhere. Use the larger pink bag for storing your dog's kibble and use the smaller green one to feed him. The green bag is 100 percent waterproof and can be used for both food and drink. Both bags are fully collapsible, which means they're great for stuffing in a backpack and taking it with you on a hike. I've had a similar collapsible, waterproof bag for my dog for years and wouldn't be able to get through the summer without it. Spending hours on the trails on an 80-degree day isn't something you can do without having a water source for your dog. What I love about these collapsible bags is that I can fit them into my hiking backpack, toss in a couple water bottles and we're all set for a day hike. Both bags can be machine washed and left to air dry. Not to mention, I love Planet Dog because of its foundation that provides cash grants to programs that support dogs helping people in need. Find out more at

Prize package #2
Prize package #2 — Small food & water bag by Planet Dog with stickers
Similar to the bags in prize package #1, this is a smaller version of the collapsible food and water bag. It is also 100 percent waterproof and can be machine washed. Toss it in your hiking backpack with a bottle of water and you're all set for a day hike with the doggie. I'm including some neat little car stickers with this bag as well, one that says "Bring Fido" (to let everyone know that you're a great dog owner and they should be too!) and another that shows your support for Planet Dog, a cool company that produces some great dog gear. Additionally, I love that a percentage of every purchase goes toward providing cash grants to programs that support working dogs. Find out more at

Prize package #3
Prize package #3: T-shirt and toys
This package of dog-oriented gear has something for both you and your pooch. For you, there's a light blue t-shirt by (size medium) featuring a pug face that says "Neighborhood Watch." I've also tossed in a set of playing cards for the canine aficionado. Made by Laurence King Gifts, the Dogs: Best in Show trump cards feature dog breed illustrations and instructions for a lighthearted card game. For fido, there's a glow in the dark bouncy ball by Planet Dog. The ball is buoyant (for those water dogs), non-toxic minty. My favorite part — it's also made in the U.S.A.

Prize package #4
This prize is no longer available!
Prize package #4: T-shirt and bath products
Get the same "Neighborhood Watch" t-shirt as in prize package #4, except in a dark blue color. The shirt features the image of a pug, size medium, and is made by This package also includes an assortment of canine bathing products by Furminator, the maker of the ultimate dog de-shedding brush. Products include a waterless de-shedding shampoo as well as a regular de-shedding shampoo and an additional de-shedding solution for use during bath time. As an extra, I've including a sticker that can be placed on a window on your home to alert firefighters or emergency professionals that there is a pet inside — so important to have in case an emergency ever happens.

Prize package #5
This prize is no longer available!
Prize package #5: Canine clean-up products
Made by Purina, this handy kit is perfect for the new dog owner. Kit includes training pads (more commonly known as "pee pads") as well as a pet stain and odor eliminator solution. My favorite in this kit is the super-sized lint roller — unless you own one of the rare non-shedding breeds, these things are a must in a dog owner's household and, in my opinion, is one of the few items we Americans should be proud to have super-sized.

Prize package #6
Prize package #6: Calendar and coffee table books
Get a darling calendar (yes, it's for 2012. I'm late. But you can still enjoy this calendar for the bulk of the year!) based off the book Unlikely Friendships, which is all about — yep, you guessed it — documented cases of unlikely friendships in the animal kingdom. Also included in this package is a set of two adorable hardcover coffee table books: Puppies in 3D and Kittens in 3D, both by author Yoneo Morita. Every guest will enjoy picking up these books to browse through beautiful photos depicting our most-popular pets in their cutest form — as babies.

Prize package #7
Prize package #7: Crochet projects for dog lovers
These two books are called "Ami Ami Dogs: Seriously Cute Crochet" (get volume 1 and volume 2) and I must admit, there are some seriously cute patterns included in this book. The paperback books by Mitsuki Hoshi introduces readers to various techniques of Amigurumi, the Japanese art of crocheting stuffed animals. Both books have patterns for 12 breeds ranging from labradors to Bernese Mountain Dogs, Dalmations, poodles and more.

You may also choose from the following selection of books:  

Book 1 — Racing in the Rain: My Life as a Dog
By Garth Stein, this is a special adaption of the New York Times best selling adult novel The Art of Racing in the Rain. (paperback)
Description included on book: "Meet one funny dog — Enzo, the lovable mutt who tells this story. Enzo knows he is different from other dogs: most dogs love to chase cars, but Enzo longs to race them . He learns about racing and the world around him by watching TV and listening to the words of his best friend, Denny, an up-and-coming race car driver, and his daughter Zoe, his constant companion. Enzo finds that life is just like being on the racetrack — it isn't simply about going fast. And, applying the rules of racing to his world, Enzo takes on his family's challenges and emerges a hero."

This prize is no longer available!
Book 2 — For the Love of Dogs: An A-to-Z Primer for Dog Lovers of All Ages
Written by Allison Weiss Entrekin. Illustrated by Mark Anderson. (hardcover)
Description included on book: "For the Love of Dogs explores our canine obsession in a fresh and humorous way, using all 26 letters of the alphabet accompanied by rhymes, colorful illustrations and informative text. The result is a tribute to pooches that can be enjoyed by readers of all ages. From barking beagles to dashing dachshunds, many of our favorite breeds are featured on this book's colorful pages. And because I is for 'Instincts' and O is for 'Obedience,' readers will learn about some of the traits that make dogs such fascinating friends."

This prize is no longer available!
Book 3 — Katie Up and Down the Hall: The True Story of How One Dog Turned Five Neighbors into a Family
By Glenn Plaskin. (hardcover)
Description on press release: "In KATIE, Plaskin tells the moving story of what happened over a period of sixteen years up and down his long hallway, his astutely-intelligent dog Katie, leading him to discovering an entirely new "family" in his New York City apartment building. At a time when people often feel estranged from their neighbors, this book is an affirmation a family is anything you want it to be, and that you might find a new one when you least expect it."

This prize is no longer available!
Book 4 — Huck: The Remarkable True Story of How One Lost Puppy Taught a Family — and a Whole Town — About Hope and Happy Endings
By Janet Elder. (hardcover)
Description on press release: It is "the kind of simple yet compelling, spirit-lifting tale that cannot be dismissed as merely another 'dog book.' It is more than just a story of one family going against the odds to find their lost puppy; at its heart, Huck is a story about the boundless love parents have for their children and the instinct of people to open their hearts to strangers in need. It is a story that you will have a hard time putting down or forgetting."

Book 5 — Roam
By Alan Lazar (hardcover)
Description on press release: "A beagle/poodle mutt named Nelson finds a happy home with a newlywed couple, Katey and Don. But when in trouble sets in, Nelson senses something wrong, and soon follows his nose outside of their yard and into the world. Over the course of eight years, Roam follows Nelson as he crosses the country searching for a way home, meeting people and animals along the way who teach him life's most valuable lesson. Roam is so much more than the story of a dog. It is an eye-opening look at the human condition."   

Book 6 — Hooper Finds a Family: A Hurricane Katrina Dog's Survival Tale
By Jane Paley (hardcover)
Description on press release: "He's endearing. He's funny. He's a survivor. In this moving tale of adventure and triumph based on a true story, a lovable yellow lab named Hooper tells his own dramatic rescue tale of being left homeless in the wake of Hurricane Katrina and taking a daring trip from New Orleans to New York City to meet his new family. He tells of the terrifying force of Katrina, his trials in the shelter, and being the new dog on the block in a city far from home. Hooper Finds a Family is  tale of survival that is sure to resonate with young readers and dog-lovers of all ages from New Orleans to New York City and beyond."

Book 7 — Ivan! A Pound Dog's View on Life, Love, and Leashes
By Tim McHugh (paperback, advance reading copy)
Description on press release: "What makes this book important is that it provides a voice for adopted dogs ... This book is similar to The Art of Racing in the Rain and A Dog's Purpose, in that it is told from the perspective of the dog. Ivan tells his story and that of his adopted family on his quest to answer the central question of life: why is he here? With optimism and insight he gives us all a great sense of appreciation for all that we have in life."

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