Tag Archives: bulldog

Downers Grove Pet Sitter Liz

Meet Downers Grove Pet Sitting Extraordinare, Liz! Warning: Her Dogs Will Make You “Aww” Out Loud! [PHOTO]

Hi there, I’m Liz, pet sitter extraordinaire covering Downers Grove! I’d like to introduce you to my furry family. I have a 7 year-old Chihuahua named Bigsby, who we call Bigs for short, a 4 year-old Yorki-Poo named Ella, and last but not least, there is my 9-month-old American Bulldog named Cooper.

Every day is an adventure with these three! My bulldog would definitely be the most social of the gang…we spend a lot of time at the dog park playing, running, and saying hi to every potential furry or human friend he sees.

As a joint decision, my furry family and I would declare the classic red Kong as our favorite toy! Each of my pups has their own size-appropriate Kong, and they go to town when I put their favorite snacks inside, like peanut butter, apple sauce, and pumpkin. Sometimes I freeze the filled Kong to make it last longer (shhhh… don’t tell them that!).

My pups also agree on having a favorite treat: they go absolutely bananas for Stella & Chewy’s Carnivore Crunch! We like to go back & forth between and try all the other flavors, too.

As cheesy at it may sound, the best gift I’ve ever received are my dogs! Their unconditional love is something that can never be replaced.

Thanks for taking the time to get to know me and my furbabies!

Table Talk: How to Feed your Pet the Natural & Healthy Way

Guest Blogger:  Many of our pet parents are interested in feeding their furry friends a healthy & natural diet so we thought we’d check in with the experts over at Boulder’s Natural Animal Hospital for some advice.  Boulder’s Natural Animal Hospital is a full service veterinary hospital located in Boulder, CO.


If you take some time to think about the trends and changes in the food products you find at your grocery store, you’ll notice that things are very different than they were even 5 years ago.

With more consumers adopting health-conscious and environmentally-conscious eating habits, natural and organic options have sprung up everywhere! Similarly, many companies have introduced ‘healthier’ options such as natural and fortified foods for your pet. With so many options to choose from, it can be hard to know what foods are right for your pet and what’s just plain hype. Have no fear: in this post, your friends at Boulder’s Natural Animal Hospital would like to help shed some light on the tricky subject of pet nutrition. We’ll discuss some things to look for as well as those to avoid and why, so you can be a savvy shopper and the best possible pet parent. Bon appetit!

Things to Look for

  • AAFCO Approved Foods: The motto of the Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) is  “Feed Safety & Consumer Protection – Over a Century of Partnership & Progress”. This organization certifies pet foods that meet at least the minimum requirements for nutritional content. As such, seeking foods that are approved by the AAFCO is a good baseline. It’s also important to note that the AAFCO has not established official definition for the words ‘holistic’ and ‘organic’. So don’t be fooled by fancy language on the side of a bag.
  • Please Pass the Meat! Many people have made the choice to eliminate the consumption of meat from their diets. Some may also choose to feed their pet’s vegetarian fare. As a pet owner who places your companion’s well-being at the top of your list of priorities, it is imperative to note that dogs and cats are carnivores. Biologically, they need real meat and the proteins that come along with it to thrive. On the same note, Fido and Fluffy have not evolved to utilize grains as a source of nutrition. This means that rice, corn, and other carbohydrates are unhelpful at best and downright dangerous at worst. The only reason they are added to most pet foods is because they are less expensive and make the meal chunkier.
  • Watery Food: Though it may sound a little bit strange, the “waterier” your pet’s food the better. Dogs and cat’s alike need a large amount of water in their diets to stay hydrated. For their more wild relatives, a large amount of their daily water comes not just from drinking, but eating as well. This is because the bodies of prey animals are composed of up to 70% water! Compare that to your standard dry kibble and you might see a problem developing. If possible, feed your pet wet food at least a few times per week, but strive to make the mushy stuff a daily part of their diet if possible.

Things to Avoid

  • Enhanced, Fortified, Blah Blah Blah: If you put our ‘Things to Look for’ list into practice, you can forget all of the hype-filled claims that fortified foods come with. Remember that dogs and cats are biologically programmed to derive everything they need for optimal health from a natural diet. Additives can be harmful whether they present a short term danger or cause complications over time. In dog foods you should strictly avoid any brands that contain BHT, BHA, ethoxyquin and propyl gallate, as they are known to be harmful and some are even carcinogens. For both dogs and cats, avoid foods that contain artificial preservatives in favor of those preserved with vitamins E and C.
  • By-products: The first ingredient in your pet’s food should be meat… and we’re talking REAL meat. Remember that your pet is a carnivore by nature and his body is fine-tuned to receive the maximum benefit by processing and using the nutrients from prey animals. Fillers and meat by-products sometimes contains additives that can be harmful to your animal companion. A good rule of thumb to follow is that if the meat isn’t human-grade, you shouldn’t feed it to your pet.
  • Overfeeding: This tip might be a bit different than the others that we’ve discussed so far, but we feel that it is just as important. America’s pets have a weight problem, just like many of our people. The key to a happy and healthy pet is feeding them the right things in the right amounts. Pets don’t have the mechanisms in their minds to turn town a delicious bowl full of food if it’s sitting on the floor in front of them all day. Make sure you feed your pet the proper amount of food for their particular size and breed and you’ll have a much happier camper on your hands.

We hope that you’ve found these tips to be helpful and informative. Some pet parents may decide that trying to navigate the complex world of pet food brands is too risky and preparing a home-cooked diet is the way to go. If you would like to explore the home-feeding option, schedule an appointment with one of the skilled veterinarians at Boulder’s Natural Animal Hospital – just call 303-494-7877.

– The Boulder’s Natural Animal Hospital Staff





Out-U-Go! staff meetings typically involve bagels, coffee, orders of business and staff members sharing  some of their experiences working at Out-U-Go!  It usually becomes clear that some of our Pet Parents’ homes produce more stories than others and at a recent meeting, one particular household of dogs proved to have A LOT of stories (mostly about poop).  Of those stories, one sticks out in particular…

To protect their anonymity, let’s refer to the dogs as Penny and Gretta G.  Now, Penny and Gretta share a special flare for life as well as anything and everything edible and not edible.  As such, it’s not uncommon for them to crap on the floor… but hey, even the best of us have the occasional accident.

Like most dogs, these two shed a lot so their owner purchased a Roomba to keep the hardwood floors clean while he’s at work.  If you don’t know, a Roomba is a Frisbee sized robot vacuum designed to roam the house cleaning the floor while you’re at work.  Between a mid day visit for the dogs from Out-U-Go! and a hard working Roomba, this Pet Parent had a lot to look forward to every time he opened his door after a hard day at work.

One day, like all days, Penny and Gretta’s owner kissed his two beautiful dogs goodbye, released the Roomba to do its thing and drove off to work.  A few hours later our walker arrived to find a house full of diarrhea and a hard working Roomba.

As it turns out, the standard Roomba is not equipped to clean a house full of diarhea, but not due to any lack of effort.  By following the parallel diarrhea tracks around the living room and noting the skid marks of partially-dry diarrhea with wheel tracks through them, our walker could clearly see the Roomba’s morning long effort to vacuum up diarrhea.  Because the Roomba has a sensor that determines whether an area is clean or whether it needs more vacuuming, it diligently attempted to clean several areas with back and forth motions until the sensor read clean.  Had the Roomba been mounted on a WWI tank it might have had a chance, but alas, the standard model uses plastic wheels and the sensor never read clean so back and forth it went.  Despite giving it the old college try, our walker wasn’t able to get the floor completely clean, just like the Roomba.

Upon hearing of this incident, our office staff picked up the phone and called this Pet Parent at work to inform him of what happened.  He responded with mostly curse words.  Penny and Gretta bounced back fairly quickly and were ready for their mid-day walk the very next day.  The Roomba, however, was never the same.


Doga Anyone?

Out-U-Go! & Boulder’s Natural Animal are once again teaming up to host Boulder’s next awesome outdoor charity event!  Our last event, the Pampered Pooch Spaw Day for Charity, was such a huge success (we raised over $1200!) that we’ve already begun organizing Doga for Charity!  Stay tuned to our Facebook page for the exact date and time, but this awesomely fun and hilarious event will take place this summer outside Boulder’s Natural Animal hospital.

All funds raised will be donated to the Humane Society of Boulder Valley.

Plan on a day of fun in the sun, canine massage, food and drinks and…. DOGA!

Any pup can participate, no matter how long they are able (or not able) to stay in one place 🙂

The team at Out-U-Go! and Boulder’s Natural Animal are looking forward to keeping everyone posted as more details develop, but based on the level of success we had with the Pampered Pooch Spaw Day, we think you’re in for a treat!!!!

Bulldogs – a unique perspective on “cute”

Every time I walk Buddi and Orecchio, it seems people just have to tell me how cute they are and “oh isn’t he precious what kind is he” and “where can I get one.”  My own first reaction was quite different.  When I first met Buddi and Orecchio, I was as shy as a new kid in class.  I’d never had any interaction with Bulldogs before, so, though I consider myself a dog person, I admit I was at a loss for what to make of the little critters.  My definition of “dog” had always assumed, among other things, an animal with a tail and nose and ears.  I’ll admit they’re charming, and I don’t mean to hurt their feelings when today I walk into the room and say “hello monsters!”  The boys seem to relish their strangeness, and I guess you could say they wear it well.  Bulldogs certainly have their fan base, kind of like, say, Danzig, and I don’t want to antagonize them. Or Danzig for that matter.  Rock on, sir.

Still, there’s no getting around the fact that Buddi looks like he came from the kennel of Dr. Frankenstein, who, undertaking canine design as a side project not worthy of his full attention, was content to just use whatever parts were laying around.  In Orecchio’s case it seems that mad Doctor F simply crossed a bat with a large potato.  Snouts and tails must have been in very short supply, because both their faces look like they’re trying to sneak back into their heads and hide, and though Orecchio has a little nub tail, Buddi has nothing but a smooth streamlined rump.  He’d probably be very aerodynamic if he ever got over 4 mph, and was heading backwards. But they’re great, I mean, “yay Bulldogs!”

Actually Buddi was sired by a champion show dog.  So though he may not have been Frankenstein’s creation, someone did indeed try very hard to bring life to that peculiar form.  Bulldogs were not bred to hunt or track or work or herd (ha!).  They were originally bred to fight bulls.  Since bull-baiting has declined in popularity in the past few centuries, poor Buddi has all the fearlessness and gall to take on a bull but alas, there are no bulls to be found (at least on our walks in Forest Park, IL).  So Buddi improvises by latching on to just about anything else, including sticks, bushes, Orecchio, my shoe, and most of all, the leash I walk him with.

He looks very inert.  Of the dozens of colorful adjectives that slap my cortex upon viewing Buddi, one of the most pragmatic is “inert.”  “Solid” is another one, and indeed I challenge any lump of lead to pack as much weight into that same size.  Yet Buddi is capable of amazing leaps.  From a calm seated position with no wind-up or viper’s coil, he can launch himself at something in the blink of an eye.  He is simply a mass located in a particular place one moment, and the very next moment he is in another particular place–likely a place you don’t want him to be–and is firmly anchored to that place with a lock jaw that is, along with his leaping/teleportation ability, explicable only in terms of mutant X-man powers.

These powers, and my efforts to match them against my own dog walking powers, I’ll have to tell you about later.  Or watch the movie ‘X Men’ and you’ll get some idea.


The Bulldog Pack

Buddi is an English Bulldog.


Buddi the English Bulldog

Orecchio is a French Bulldog.



Orecchio the Bulldog

Sometimes the two of them like to re-enact the 100 Years War, and it’s times like that which make me grateful that Bulldogs’ canine teeth are recessed into their tiny snouts, or else it would be too true a re-enactment, with blood and carnage spread out across the globe.  Instead, they just sort of wrestle each other and snarl and try to bite but usually after a few moments of furry fury get so exhausted that they just retreat to opposite corners of the room and vomit.  You can ask a historian how well this performance symbolizes the 100 Years War.  All I know is I don’t like watching it, yet dare not venture a hand to pull them apart, lest it be returned to me a stump.  Also, if I pull one away and restrain him, the other seizes the opportunity to get some cheap shots.  No one is ever really hurt and there isn’t always a clear winner, so I bite my lip and let them fight it out.  At least, I used to. They haven’t fought in weeks.  It might have something to do with hormone changes in Buddi, who was neutered several month ago.  Possible.  But I’d rather take the credit for fostering a comfortable environment where neither dogs feels the need to vie for position in the pack.  It hasn’t been easy, but slowly, they are turning into teddy bears.

Buddi is about 50 lbs and very powerful.  He is also, to quote his human dad, “a huge butthead.”  He is aware of how strong and intimidating he is, and likes to push boundaries.  Orecchio, like many younger siblings, is much more mellow.  When Buddi is acting up by, say, attacking the towel you are using to wipe up wet paw prints, or trying to pick and then win a fight with a nearby hockey stick, Orecchio will sometimes reproach his brother by attacking him.  This is very noble and brave of Orecchio (fine Renaissance gentleman that he is) since Buddi is at least twice his size.  These fights end quickly because Buddi knows he is in the wrong, and like any older sibling who has just been tattled on, he contests the point just a little for decorum’s sake, and then sulks away to plot his revenge.

But the revenge motive is only part of the explanation for their fights.  The greater part has to do with pack dynamics, and the complications that come along with new pack members.  Since I walk Buddi and Orecchio (or Rec as I like to call him) twice a day, I am kind of part of the pack.  The bulldogs are like any dogs in that they instinctively seek the comfort of knowing who is the pack leader.  That can never be me, nor should it be.  If their owner was a petite woman, the boy’s would defer to her like the wonderful and loyal vassals that dogs so often are.  But their human is in fact himself a large and powerful guy, and so the thing I’ll call a mind residing inside Buddi’s “butthead” has an extra overt and satisfying bit of information to put his pack sense to rest:  the knowledge that his owner could kick his butt.  Not that his owner would, because he is in fact a very doting and caring pet parent.  But with Buddi, I just get the sense there is more of a high-school gym-room kind of mentality.  Before I showed up, the pack was clear in his mind:  big monkey thing (his owner) on top, then himself (the Awesome One), then the Frenchman.  Simple.

Then I showed up…

To be continued