Pups in the Park

Where: Washington, DC (Nationals Park) 
Date: Saturday, June 2, vs. Atlanta Braves
Benefitting: Washington Humane Society
Information: Tickets MUST be purchased in advance. Click here to order your tickets. For more information visit the Washington Humane Society event page
Can’t make the event? Make a donation to support the Washington Humane Society.

Image courtesy of Washington Humane Society

Get ready to enjoy afternoon of baseball this season with your four-legged friends! Purchase a discounted Washington Nationals ticket for you, your family, and your favorite pups and support the Washington Humane Society! 100 percent of every $8 dog ticket purchased for a Pups in the Park game will benefit WHS.

All participants MUST buy tickets in advance. Ticket sales are managed through the Washington Nationals and all information regarding ticket sales and Nationals Park may be found at www.nationals.com/pups.

Walk for Animals

Where: Sparks, Nev. (Sparks Marina Park)
Date: Saturday, June 2
Benefitting: Nevada Humane Society
Information: For more information visit the Nevada Humane Society event page
Can’t make the event? Make a donation to support the Nevada Humane Society.

Image courtesy of Nevada Humane Society

Calling all animal lovers! It’s time to put your best foot forward! You’re invited to help us raise $100,000 to provide care for homeless dogs and cats in our community by participating in our Walk for Animals! Festivities include a two-mile fun walk, music, contests, face painting, pet services, refreshments and more. Four-legged walkers on leashes are welcome.

Walkers are asked to seek donations from family, friends and co-workers. Everyone who raises $30 or more will receive a Walk for Animals t-shirt. Those who raise more become eligible for other great prizes, including admission to a VIP tent during the event. Individuals who want to help raise funds but can’t take part in the walk can still gather donations to sponsor the NHS team of dogs.

Hounds and Sounds

Where: Saukville, Wis. (Wisconsin Humane Society, Ozaukee Campus)
Date: Saturday, June 2
Benefitting: Wisconsin Humane Society
Information: For more information visit the Wisconsin Humane Society event page.
Can’t make the event? Make a donation to support the Wisconsin Humane Society

Image courtesy of Wisconsin Humane Society

It’s been a year since the Wisconsin Humane Society Ozaukee Campus opened its shelter in Saukville. To celebrate this milestone, they are hosting Hounds & Sounds: An Anniversary Celebration. This family-friendly event will combine the very popular musical series they held last summer into one celebration of live music from the band, String-a-Long, food, drinks, our prize wheel, and even a puppy parade!

Walk for Animals 2012

Where: Montpelier, Vt. (Downtown)
Date: Saturday, June 2
Benefitting: Central Vermont Humane Society
Information: For more information visit the Central Vermont Humane Society event page.
Can’t make the event? Make a donation to support the Central Vermont Humane Society

Image courtesy of Central Vermont Humane Society

Walk for the animals as an individual, or team up with friends, family, or co-workers for more fun! This year’s route will start at the Montpelier Recreation Field and loop 3.1 miles through Downtown Montpelier. After the walk, return to the event pavilion to celebrate your accomplishment for the animals. Enjoy refreshments & ice cream, wonderful company, and more! A noontime prize ceremony will recognize the “top dogs” in each category. Every walker will receive a 2012 Walk for Animals T-shirt and fun gifts from CVHS. The top two highest pledge collectors in each category will also be awarded special prizes!

Bark Ball

Where: Washington, DC (Washington Hilton) 
Date: Saturday, June 2
Benefitting: Washington Humane Society
Information: For more information visit the Washington Humane Society event page. 
Can’t make the event? Make a donation to support the Washington Humane Society.

Image courtesy of Washington Humane Society

This event is the only black-tie event for Washington, DC’s movers and shakers where they can bring their canine companions as their dates. The Bark Ball draws many of the area’s most illustrious residents and their four-legged friends, all in honor of the programs and services of the Washington Humane Society. The guest list always includes leading figures from the political, media, entertainment, sports, and business worlds.

The Washington Humane Society’s 25th annual black-tie gala will be held on Saturday, June 2 at the Washington Hilton. There will be a reception followed by an extensive silent and live auction, dinner, program, dancing, and special surprises.

Island Party

Where: Ormond Beach, Fla. (at the Ron Rice residence, founder of Hawaiian Tropic)
Date: Saturday, June 2
Benefitting: Halifax Humane Society
Information: For more information visit the Halifax Humane Society event page.
Can’t make the event? Make a donation to support the Halifax Humane Society.

Halifax Humane Society will host its 2012 Island Party to kick off the summer for the Greater Daytona Beach area.  Hawaiian Tropic founder Ron Rice has graciously opened his home for this fundraising event, which will benefit the animals at Halifax Humane Society.

Photos courtesy of Halifax Humane Society

Beer, wine, specialty cocktails, and fabulous island fare from Amber Jewel’s Catering are included with admission. Guests will enjoy a beautiful evening at the Spanish estate’s pool deck while listening to Alex Kinsey & the Awesome Karma Band jam to island tunes. There will be an auction for a weekend stay at the Spanish home, as well as beautiful pieces from the Spring Collection compliments of Molto Bella.

Mutt March

Where: Grosse Point Shores, Mich. (Edsel & Eleanor Ford House)
Date: Sunday, June 3
Benefitting: Michigan Humane Society
Information: For more information visit the Michigan Humane Society event page
Can’t make the event? Make a donation to support the Michigan Humane Society.  

You can help homeless animals while joining in the fun at the 24th annual Mutt March! This family-friendly event includes a scenic walk, with or without a pet, around the beautiful grounds of the Edsel & Eleanor Ford House in Grosse Pointe Shores. Your participation will help MHS change the lives of thousands of homeless, abused and neglected animals this year

Register, create your own web page, form teams, and solicit donations online!

All walkers who turn in donations of $156 or more at the event will receive an official Mutt March T-shirt. The first 800 four-legged walkers will receive a Mutt March bandana. If your dog will be walking with you, be sure to bring current vaccination records.

Clothing & Shoe Donations: To help additional animals in need, MHS is pleased to partner with American Textile Recycling Services (ATRS), which will be accepting donations of your gently used clothing and shoes at the Mutt March. ATRS will make a monetary donation to MHS based on the amount of clothing and shoes collected. Thank you!

Summer Shindig

Where: Alpharetta, Georgia (Country Club of the South)
Date: Saturday, June 23
Benefitting: Atlanta Humane Society
Information: For more information visit the Atlanta Humane Society event page
Can’t make the event? Make a donation to support the Atlanta Humane Society.

 Image courtesy of Atlanta Humane Society

Join the Atlanta Humane Society  for Summer Shindig, their first social fundraising event to benefit the Atlanta Humane Society’s Mansell Campus! This extraordinary adoption facility hopes to find forever homes for 6,000 pets this year, and we need your support to make this a reality. On a beautiful summer night enjoy delicious barbecue as you get down to the bluegrass sounds of the Packway Handle Band out of Athens. A 2006 Harley Davidson motorcycle will be raffled off, but best of all you will spend time with some adorable, adoptable pets.

All motorcycle raffle tickets will be mailed after payment has been processed.


Sniff and schmooze with other dogs and their owners during The Ritz-Carlton, Laguna Niguel’s Yappy Hour, the monthly cocktail party for canines and their companions. Kick back and relax while your pup kicks up some dirt on The Dana Lawn. Dogs will enjoy lapping up libations, thanks to water in his favorite flavor–bacon, chicken, cheese, beef or liver–while you enjoy wines from Mutt Lynch Winery. Featured Mutt Lynch Wines by the glass include Unleashed Chardonnay, Merlot Over and Play Dead, and Chateau d’Og Cabernet Sauvignon.

Yappy Hour is celebrated Thursdays, June 7, July 5, August 2, and September 6 from 5 to 8 p.m.  The monthly events are held to raise money for the Laguna Beach Animal Shelter.

The Mutt Lynch Story

Mutt Lynch Winery was born in 1995 combining Chris and Brenda Lynch’s mutual passion for wine and “all things dog.”  Natural evolution carved out their roles. Chris dreamed of owning his own winery and started as winemaker– books, courses, not one ounce of natural production sense. Brenda started by helping Chris and quickly assessed the situation and took over–no books, no courses, but a natural sense of “what to do” in the cellar. Since its start, Mutt Lynch Winery has been sourcing its grapes from vineyards up and down the coast of California. Brenda’s goal is to create fruit-forward wines with varietally true aromatics, mid palette weight and flavor, and a full bodied and balanced finish.

About the Laguna Beach Animal Shelter

The Laguna Beach Animal Shelter opened in 1975 by a group of volunteers. The Shelter serves the residents of Laguna by providing temporary care for lost, stray and sick or injured animals rescued by Animal Services Officers within the city limits.  At any one time, the facility houses dogs, cats, and a small number of other animals.  Every animal at the Shelter is held for seven days for reclaiming by its owner. Dogs and cats that remain unclaimed are seen by a veterinarian, bathed and groomed, vaccinated, micro-chipped and neutered/spayed and then put up for adoption. The aim of adoption is to place the animal in the most compatible situations possible and ensure an appropriate match between pet and owner.  While the Shelter’s basic upkeep and routine operations are funded by the City of Laguna Beach, it is dependent on private donations to cover all other expenses. The City of Laguna Beach Animal Shelter, located at 20612 Laguna Canyon Road, Laguna Beach, is open seven days a week from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

About The Ritz-Carlton, Laguna Niguel

The Ritz-Carlton, Laguna Niguel premiered as the first luxury resort along coastal Orange County in August 1984. Twenty-six years later, the resort is a re-imagined surfside retreat that awakens guests’ senses with its unique ocean-front setting and remarkable service heritage.  The resort is the premiere destination for travelers who desire a playful approach to Southern California luxury.

The resort has been the recipient of many awards over the years, but is proud to boast earning AAA Five Diamond status for the 25th year, the longest in California. The resort offers many extraordinary luxury experiences including Raya, 180blũ, The Market Place, Eno, Bar Raya, The Spa and Jean-Michel Cousteau’s Ambassadors of the Environment.  For more information or reservations call 800-241-3333, the hotel directly at 949-240-2000, a travel professional or visit the web site at www.ritzcarlton.com/laguna.

The Ritz-Carlton, Laguna Niguel
One Ritz-Carlton Drive, Dana Point, CA 92629, U.S.A.
(949) 240-2000
Photos courtesy of The Ritz-Carlton, Laguna Niguel.

Consider this predicament: you are a U.S. service member and you receive orders to deploy or move to a temporary duty station for an extended period of time. If you are a pet owner what do you do with your pet if a family member or friend can not care for your pet for that length of time?

Shawn & Alisa Johnson, who serve in the U.S. Navy and U.S. Marine Corps respectively, created a social site that allows service members who need help with their pets in situations like this to easily find it. Thus, Dogs on Deployment was born.

Q & A: Shawn & Alisa Johnson, founders of Dogs on Deployment

Who are the founders?

  • Dogs on Deployment was founded by husband and wife, Shawn and Alisa Johnson, who serve in the U.S. Navy and U.S. Marine Corps respectively. They started Dogs on Deployment in June 2011. They own two Australian Shepherds and a Caique parrot.

Why create the site?

  • In 2011, Alisa received orders to Quantico, Va. for a six-month Marine Corps school where she was required to live in military housing which did not allow pets. During this time, Shawn was scheduled to deploy. They stressed over where their dog was going to live, but eventually contacted a family member who was willing to watch him during for the length of time needed. They were lucky, but recognized that there are service members who don’t have the support they did. Alisa and Shawn wanted to create a social site which would allow service members who need help with their pets, easily find it. Thus, Dogs on Deployment was born.

What is Dogs on Deployment?

  • Military members nation-wide confront a multitude of problems during their career. The last problem they want to worry about is what to do with their beloved family pet when it’s time for them to deploy. Service members have limited options for their pets when they have to go overseas. Many owners have had to relinquish their pets to shelters when they thought they had nowhere else to go. Dogs On Deployment is a licensed non-profit provides an online resource for military members to search for volunteers who are willing to board their pets for the length of their deployment or training schedule. We support all branches of the Armed Services and accept applications from active duty, reservists and retired military personnel.

How does it work?

  • Families and individuals may sign up to become a “DoD Boarder” by visiting our website and completing an application which will be posted online in a searchable database. DoD Boarders will be notified of Pets in Need in their area, search in other areas and they may contact the owners via email.
  • Service members about to deploy who need a temporary home can list their pet by visiting our website and completing an application which will be posted online in a searchable database Service members will be notified of DoD Boarders in their area, search for a DoD Boarder in other areas and they may contact DoD Boarders via email.
  • The pet owner is in charge of who they choose to board their pet. When they have chosen a suitable DoD Boarder, their listing will be deactivated. They can use our Owner Resources to prepare their pet for the DoD Boarder’s household.
  • Simple as that! Dogs on Deployment is a place for people who love animals and who love their country to get a chance to really support their troops by giving service member’s dogs a place to call home when they would otherwise not have one.

Is there any additional information that you might want to include?

  • On Dec 31, 2011 Dogs on Deployment filed for their 501c3 tax-exempt status. They are also in the process of professionally redesigning their website. Please support their endeavors to improve the service they offer to military members and volunteers by donating any amount to donations@dogsondeployment.com via PayPal.


This  Memorial Day, how will you honor the men, women, and even animals who serve our country? Consider making a donation to Dogs on Deployment or become a volunteer boarder.

For more information about Dogs on Deployment go to http://www.dogsondeployment.org/ or visit their facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/DogsonDeployment


by Doug Gelbert, author of Doggin’ America: 100 Ideas For Great Outdoor Vacations To Take With Your Dog

The welcome mat in our National Park System rolls up when we drive in with our dogs. Very few national parks allow dogs on hiking trails. In Yellowstone National Park dogs are not allowed more than 100 feet from roads, parking areas and campgrounds. In Yosemite National Park dogs can walk the paved paths of the Valley floor but are not permitted on any trail or slope. At the Grand Canyon dogs can walk along the South Rim in developed areas but can not go on any trail below the rim. At Zion National Park dogs are permitted on one mild trail.

And on and on. So, while most of America is making plans to visit our national natural treasure, we dog owners must be a bit more creative. Here are the five best national parks to take your dog in America.

1. Acadia National Park Bar Harbor, Maine
Acadia National Park is certainly one of the crown jewels in the National Park Service and dogs will not bark in dissent—this is the best national park to bring your dog for outdoor adventure. Except for the swimming beaches and ladder hiking trails like the Precipice Trail, dogs are allowed throughout the park.

Much of your time with your dog in Acadia will be spent on its intricate network of carriage roads. Mount Desert Island, named by French explorer Samuel Champlain in 1604, was once the summer playground of America’s rich and famous. When John D. Rockefeller, Jr., no great fan of the horseless carriage, visited the Maine coast he enjoyed outings with his team of horses and open coaches. He painstakingly directed the construction of wide, motor-free carriage roads twisting through the island mountains. Forty-five miles of rustic broken stone roads were eventually built between 1913 and 1940 and the hand-built byways are the best examples of the construction technique still in use in America. In addition to the stone roads and stone guardrails, irregularly spaced granite slabs known locally as “Rockefeller’s Teeth,” there are 16 stone-faced bridges—each unique in design.

One of the wealthy elite, George B. Dorr, devoted 43 years and much of his family fortune to preserving the island. He offered more than 6,000 acres to the federal government and in 1916, President Woodrow Wilson established the Sieur de Monts National Monument. Three years later Lafayette National Park became the first national park east of the Mississippi River. Honoring its Acadian heritage, the park became Acadia National Park in 1929.

Several park highlights come with little perches for your dog. The Jordan Pond Nature Trail is a mile-long loop leading to views of glacial mountains reflecting in the pond waters. The rounded mountains, known as the Bubbles, can be climbed on short trails. Other easy hikes include the Ocean Trail to Otter Cliffs that clings to the edge of lands’ end over the Atlantic surf and exploratory walks atop Cadillac Mountain. The 1530-foot summit is the highest point on the Atlantic Ocean north of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil and sunrise hikes here will be the first to be illuminated in America. The Great Head Trail loops across Sand Beach and most people go right at the head of the loop. But going left into the maritime forest saves the spectacular coastal views from one of America’s highest headlands until the end. All these trails are easily accessed from the Park Loop Road and can get busy. Seek out trails across Somes Sound—America’s only fjord—in the western reaches of the park to find fewer paw prints.

2. Shenandoah National Park Luray, Virginia
The Blue Ridge Mountains that host Shenandoah National Park are the oldest rocks on earth. A billion years ago these mountains were higher than the Rockies when they were created. Time has weathered and rounded the peaks and valley that we see today. But what we see in Shenandoah has not been left to the hand of nature, as we have come to expect in our national parks.

Shenandoah is very much a planned national park. President Herbert Hoover established a Summer White House on the Rapidan River (the park is only 75 miles from Washington, DC) helping to trigger wilderness development. During the Great Depression, Shenandoah was officially designated a national park and Franklin Roosevelt’s “Tree Army” planted hundreds of thousands of trees on slopes that had been cleared for farms and firewood.

At the same time construction began on the 105-mile Skyline Drive that is today the only public road in Shenandoah National Park. Your dog is welcome at just about every stop along the way—only 20 of the more than 500 miles of hiking trails are off-limits for dogs. These are usually trails involving awkward passages and rock climbs. Unfortunately one such trail is on Old Rag Mountain that is considered by many to be the best hike on the East Coast. But generally your dog will be able to visit the best views and waterfalls in Shenandoah National Park.

3. Cuyahoga Valley National Park Brecksville, Ohio
Raise your hand if you knew that America’s first national park of the 21st Century was created in…………..Cleveland? To the first people who came here 12,000 years ago the Cuyahoga was the “crooked river.” Its steep valley walls inhibited settlement as easterners poked into the region in the late 1700s. But a navigable water link between Lake Erie and the Ohio River was a priority in the early American Canal Age and in 1832 the Ohio & Erie Canal became a reality. Ohio boomed and settlers poured into the area. The canal was put out of business by the Great Flood of 1913 and the Cuyahoga Valley was left to recreational purposes. The 33,000 acres along the banks of the Cuyahoga River were protected as a national recreation area so the heavy lifting for creating the park was done before its designation as a national park in 2000.

As befits its history as a recreation destination, Cuyahoga is a national park that permits dogs on its trails. It doesn’t have the feel of the grand American national parks but instead evokes an intimate feel on the trails that are squeezed between highways, farmlands, and neighborhoods.

The main trail through the park is the nearly 20 miles of the Towpath Trail along the route of the historic canal. Ten trailheads make it easy to hike the crushed limestone path in biscuit-size chunks. The trail is a mix of meadows and forests and the remnants of locks and villages.

Another long distance trail through the park is the Buckeye Trail that circles the entire state of Ohio for over 1200 miles. About 33 miles of the blue-blazed pathway wander the ravines and ridges of the valley.

Some of the best outings with your dog in the park are in the north end of the Cuyahoga Valley, in the Bradford Reservation. A five-mile all-purpose trail traverses the Tinkers Creek Gorge area, exploring Ohio’s most spectacular canyon. The gorge is a National Natural Landmark, noted for its virgin hemlock forests. Short detours off the main trail include an easy walk to Bridal Veil Falls and the Hemlock Creek Loop Trail.

Other highlights include the dark and mysterious 2.2-mile ramble around the Ledges (from the Happy Day camp) and a short 1.25-mile loop through the Brandywine Gorge that takes your dog to the lip of Brandywine Falls and 160 feet down to the water level.

4. Hot Springs National Park Hot Springs, Arkansas
The water that bubbles to the ground at 143 degrees Fahrenheit fell to earth 4,000 years ago, percolating deep into the earth and heating four degrees every 300 feet before seeping out of the lower west slope of Hot Springs Mountain. Spanish explorers and French trappers visited the springs for centuries. In 1803 the United States acquired this land in the Louisiana Purchase and in 1832 the Federal Government reserved land around the springs—the first “national park” to protect a natural resource. There was little done to administer the reserve, however, and private bathhouses sprung up to cater to tourists visiting to relax in the “healing” waters. Finally in 1921, Hot Springs became a true National Park, a unique blend of a highly developed small city set in low-lying, rounded mountains.

There are more than 30 miles of top-notch hiking trails available in Hot Springs, mostly on short, inter-connecting jogs on Hot Springs Mountain and West Mountain that flank the city. Many of these paths were carved for visitors who were encouraged to walk daily in addition to their baths as part of an all-encompassing healthy routine at the spas. Most were constructed wide enough to handle carriages and are still roomy today. Although the mountains only top out at little more than 1,000 feet expect to find some climbs that will leave you and your dog panting. Also, there aren’t many streams so make sure you carry plenty of cooling water for your dog on a summer afternoon’s outing.

For extended canine hiking head out on the Sunset Trail that leaves West Mountain and tags Music Mountain at 1,405 feet (the highest spot in the park) before doubling back onto Sugarloaf Mountain. This trail doesn’t loop and is a good candidate for a car shuttle. Back in town you can take your dog on a tour of Bathhouse Row with a half-mile saunter down the Promenade, visiting several of the 47 springs that flow at an average rate of 850,000 gallons a day.

The one place you can’t take your dog in Hot Springs is in the centerpiece bathhouses but across from Bathhouse Row you can catch a ride on a Duck Boat, an amphibious vehicle that drives south of town for a cruise on Lake Hamilton. Dogs are allowed to ride on the top deck.

5. Mammoth Cave National Park Mammoth Cave, Kentucky
Not named for extinct wooly elephants but rather the length of its passageways, Mammoth Cave is by far the longest known cave system in the world. In fact, if you combined the second- and third-longest caves and put them in Mammoth Cave there would be 1000 miles left over.

There may be no traces of mammoths in the vast underground world but archeologists have unearthed evidence of human occupation in Mammoth Cave from as far back as 4,000 years ago. In the early days of the country, Mammoth Cave was used commercially to produce saltpeter needed to manufacture gunpowder and in 1941 the cave was protected as a national park. In 1981, Mammoth Cave was named a World Heritage Site.

Your dog won’t be able to sniff around the 336 miles of underground passages in Mammoth Cave but there are more than 70 miles of trails above ground to explore in the park. A variety of leg-stretching hikes less than two miles are available around the Visitor Center, including the Green River Bluffs Trail that snakes through thick woods to a promontory above the Green River. For prolonged canine hiking head for the North Side Trails. A half-dozen mid-length day hikes launch into the dark hollows and hardwood forests from the Maple Spring Trailhead (North Entrance Road). A favorite day hike for your dog here is the 7.9-mile Good Springs Loop that rolls past numerous waterfalls. This labyrinth of trails cuts through rugged terrain that has been left in its natural state. In the Big Woods (Little Jordan Road), you can hike the White Oak Trail through one of the last remaining old growth forests in Kentucky.

Along Highway 255 (the East Entrance road) is a small parking lot for a short trail to Sand Cave. For several weeks in the 1930s, this remote section of woods was the most famous spot in America. A local cave explorer named Floyd Collins became trapped in the cave and the nation became fixated on the rescue efforts that were meticulously detailed in newspapers and radio reports. Rescuers were ultimately unsuccessful in freeing Collins from a leg-pinning rock. The incident spawned books and a movie starring Kirk DouglasAce In The Hole. The small entrance of Sand Cave is wired off today and there is little to remind visitors of the drama that once gripped America here.


Doug Gelbert is the author of 26 books on hiking with your dog, including Doggin’ America: 100 Ideas For Great Outdoor Vacations To Take With Your Dog. His latest canine hiking guides are for Atlanta-North Georgia, Orlando-Central Florida and Asheville-Western Carolina.



Giveaway Items:


  • The Giveaway is sponsored by Sleepypod, 2797 East Foothill Boulevard, Suite 110, Pasadena, CA 91107.

Agreement to Official Rules:

  • Participation in the Giveaway constitutes entrant’s full and unconditional agreement to and acceptance of these Official Rules and the decisions of the Sponsor, which are final and binding. Winning a prize is contingent upon fulfilling all requirements set forth herein.


  • No purchase necessary. A purchase or payment of any kind will not increase your chances of winning.
  • Open to legal residents of the fifty (50) United States and the District of Columbia.
  • You must be 18+ years or older.
  • Only one entrant per e-mail address per household.
  • Sleepypod, LaunchLab Inc., Linus Bikes, Modko, Molly Mutt, Jonathon Adler, The Rover Boutique, Sniff, and World’s Best Products employees and their immediate family (spouse, parents, siblings, and children) and household members are not eligible.
  • Subject to all federal, state, and local laws and regulations. Void where prohibited.
  • Participation in the Giveaway constitutes entrant’s full and unconditional agreement to these official rules and Sponsor’s decisions, which are final and binding in all matters related to the Giveaway. Winning a prize is contingent upon fulfilling requirements set fort herein.
  • Participation in the Giveaway constitutes your consent to Sponsor’s use of your entry image(s) in any media to include the internet, without further payment, notice, review, or approval.
  • Participation in the Giveaway constitutes your consent to Sponsor’s use of your name for promotional purposes in any media to include the internet, without further payment, notice, review, or approval.

Entry Period:

  • Contest begins: Thursday, June 21 at 21:00 EST
  • Contest ends: Thursday, June 28 at 21:00 EST


  • Entry method:  GiveawayTools.com
  • To enter the Giveaway, follow the instructions on the giveaway site. You will automatically receive one giveaway entry by completing the required entry.
  • In addition, you may earn extra entries for completing the non-required entries.
  • LIMITATIONS: Multiple entrants are not permitted to share the same e-mail address and/or household. Any attempt by any entrant to obtain more than the stated number of entries by using multiple/different e-mail addresses, identities, registrations and logins, or any other methods will void that entrant’s entries and that entrant may be disqualified. Use of any automated system to participate is prohibited and will result in disqualification. Sponsor is not responsible for lost, late, incomplete, invalid, unintelligible, or misdirected registrations, which will be disqualified. In the event of a dispute as to any registration, the authorized account holder of the e-mail address used to register will be deemed the registrant.
  • Sponsor will randomly select the potential giveaway winner from all eligible entries through the use of GiveawayTools.com on or around the end date specified for the Giveaway period. The odds of being selected as a potential winner depend on the number of eligible entries received during the entry period.

Winner Notification:

  • Potential winners will be contacted via email and will be asked to provide their full name, age and mailing address within a specified time period.
  • Winner has seven (7) days to respond to initial winner notification.
  • If a potential winner does not respond within the timeframe stated in the notification email, the Sponsor may select an alternate potential winner in his/her place at random from all entries received during the Entry period.
Requirements of the Potential Winners:
  • Except where prohibited, the potential winners may be required to complete and return an affidavit of eligibility and liability/publicity release (the “Affidavit/Release”) within seven (7) days of being notified.
  • If a potential winner fails to sign and return the Affidavit/Release within the required time period, an alternate entrant will be selected in his/her place in a random drawing of all entries received.

Release and Limitations of Lliability:

  • By participating in the Giveaway, entrants agree to release and hold harmless the Sponsor and its respective subsidiaries, affiliates, suppliers, distributors, advertising/promotion agencies, and each of their respective parent companies and each of such company’s officers, directors, employees, and agents (collectively the “Giveaway Entities”) from and against any claim or cause of action, including, but not limited to: (a) unauthorized human intervention in the Giveaway; (b) technical errors related to computers, servers, providers, or telephone or network lines; (c) printing errors; (d) errors in the administration of the Giveaway or the processing of entries; or (e) injury or damage to persons or property which may be caused, directly or indirectly, in whole or in part, from entrant’s participation in the Giveaway or receipt of any prize. Entrant further agrees that in any cause of action, the Giveaway Entities’ liability will be limited to the cost of entering and participating in the Giveaway, and in no event shall the Giveaway Entities be liable for attorney’s fees. Entrant waives the right to claim any damages whatsoever, including, but not limited to, punitive, consequential, direct, or indirect damages.

Giveaway Results:

  • Winner results will be posted in the “Giveaways” section of this blog.

Today is Bike to Work Day, so celebrate the day by biking to work—with your pet! Sleepypod makes it easier to bike to work with a pet. In celebration of the day and to encourage biking to work, Sleepypod put together a video on “biking to work Sleepypod style.” The video showcases Sidekick bike rack, a soon to be released bike rack specially designed by Sleepypod to hold precious cargo like your pet in their award-winning, crash-tested pet carriers. When not biking with your pet, the rack is designed to hold books and bags. Sidekick bike rack will be launched on June 22 in Los Angeles, Calif. at Dwell on Design, the biggest modern design show on the West Coast.

Don’t forget that safety is paramount. Below are some refresher bicycle safety tips from BikeToWorkInfo.org.

Bicycle Safety: A Shared Responsibility

by BikeToWorkInfo.org

As you work to build more bicycling in your daily routine, you should be aware of safe bicycling and driving practices. Bicycles are classified as road users in the same sense as motor vehicles and are subject to the same rules and regulations. Acting as an alert, cautious, and responsible bicyclist (or motorist) will create a safer and more comfortable environment for all road users and will provide a positive example for others.

The following tips can help improve road safety for everyone.

Safety tips for bicyclists

1.  Always ride with traffic and follow the rules of the road. One common misconception is to ride against traffic. While this does apply to walking on a roadway (in order to ensure that you can see oncoming cars), it is not recommended for bicyclists. When you ride with traffic, you are much more predictable and visible to motorists, especially at intersections and driveways. Try to ride in a straight line, not in and out of cars, and use hand signals when turning and stopping. Obey traffic signs, signals, and lane markings and yield to traffic when appropriate, including to pedestrians.

2.  Take care in choosing where to ride. Motorists are not always looking for bicyclists on the sidewalk, especially those riding against traffic. In addition, bicyclists riding on the sidewalk pose a danger to pedestrians and can be less visible to cars pulling out of driveways. As such, you may be at greater risk of being hit by a motorist than if you were riding on the road with traffic. Use your best judgment about where to ride, taking into consideration the speed and volume of traffic, the width of space to bike in, your biking speed, and the presence of driveways and turning traffic.

3.  Ride on the trail, paved shoulder, bike lane, or bike route. Use designated bicycle infrastructure if it is provided. Keep in mind, however, that you still need to follow the rules of the road and watch out for your fellow travelers. Ride to the right, signal your turns, and obey traffic signs and signals.

4.  Be predictable and visible. As a bicyclist in the roadway or on a trail, try not to do things that motorists and other travelers may not be expecting. Make sure everyone can see you and understands where you are going. If you are riding in the dark, use headlights, taillights and reflectors, and wear reflective materials and brightly colored clothing. Headlights are required by law for night riding in most places. Do not wear headphones or talk on a cell phone while bicycling.

5. Watch for debris or other obstacles on the road or trail that might make you fall or swerve. Rocks, trash, storm grates, wet leaves, potholes, gravel, railroad tracks, and even wet pavement markings can all send you flying. Navigate through these areas with care and also watch for parked cars, doors opening, and cars pulling in and out of driveways. Also, be sure to maintain your bicycle, as mechanical failure on a bicycle can make you fall as well.

6. Watch for turning traffic. Perhaps rather surprisingly, crash data tells us that getting hit from behind is extremely unlikely. Most car/bike collisions happen at intersections and driveways when motorists or bicyclists are turning. So, at every intersection and driveway, keep a careful eye out for:

  • Motorists turning right in front of you-you may be going faster than they think.
  • Motorists turning left across your path-drivers are looking for gaps in traffic and may not be paying attention to anything other than other motor vehicles.

7. Stay Alert. Use both your eyes AND ears while biking. Often, the only warning that you have for a crash will be the sound, so never were headphones while biking and pay attention to what is going on around you.


The Bike to Work website is funded by the U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration and maintained by the Pedestrian and Bicycle Information Center within the University of North Carolina Highway Safety Research Center.


The winner of Pet Travel Experts’ “Small Pets Can Travel, Too!” giveaway is … Monica E.

Monica E. selected a Sleepypod Mini in the Chocolate Brown color to accompany her Critter Kit. Thank you to all who participated in the giveaway. Be sure to check back for more giveaway opportunities!

Extra special thanks to Orange County Cavy Haven. Go to http://www.cavyhaven.org/ for more information on their mission, how to help, for information on their events, or to make a donation.


Six Things You Should Know When Taking a Cat on a Road Trip

by Pet Hotels of America

Taking a cat on a road trip can be a great experience if you prepare properly and understand your animal’s limitations. Today we will focus on traveling with a cat in a car and what you need to consider before leaving.

#1.  First, you will want to contact the state veterinarian’s office. There are rules and regulations for each state. You will need to find out if there are requirements or restrictions for every state you will drive through.

#2.  Pet experts recommend you stop every two hours for your cat to stretch, especially during the day. At night, most cats can go longer periods without stopping. When you do stop, make sure your cat is leashed. If you don’t have your cat chipped, it’s a good idea to do that before you leave on your journey.

#3.  Make sure your cat’s bedding is comfortable in the carrier and the carrier is secured. Like kids, when traveling with a cat, give him toys to keep him occupied.

#4.  Never leave your cat alone in the car even if you crack the windows. Remember, on a 80 degree day the interior of a parked car can reach up to 105 degrees within only 10 minutes.

#5.  When taking a cat on a road trip, it’s best to chart your course before you leave. Determine how many hours your cat can handle in a car carrier. Even if you make frequent stops to let your cat stretch, it is still hard for him to stay in a car as long as humans can so take this into consideration when planning your trip. Have your hotels reserved in advance if possible. Pet Hotels of America has more than 25,000 pet-friendly hotels to choose from so make sure you take care of this before heading out.

#6.  Once you reach your destination, have fun. Cat’s love vacations too!


Pet Hotels of America is a one-stop travel-planning website for pet owners that can be found at http://www.pethotelsofamerica.com. Travelers with pets may make reservations at any of its 25,000 pet-friendly hotels in the U.S., pet-friendly car agencies and airlines. The website provides for pet owners, negotiated low hotel rates and often such extras as a free breakfast buffet or Starbucks certificate. Pet Hotels of America also has listings, maps and comment pages for pet-friendly beaches, parks and restaurants; kennels, doggie daycares and pet resorts; animal events and pet expos; and pet services including veterinarians, groomers and more.


Happy Mother’s Day to all the moms out there, especially our pet loving moms!


To kick off the release of Sleepypod’s Limited  Edition Critter Kit, Sleepypod is giving away one (1) Critter Kit + one (1) Sleepypod Mini mobile pet bed in the winner’s choice of color. Winner may choose from  Jet Black, Chocolate Brown, Strawberry Red, Blossom Pink, Arctic White, or Sky Blue. (Entry, details, and rules below.)

Sleepypod will also donate (1) Critter Kit + (1) Sleepypod Mini mobile pet bed to the Orange County Cavy HavenOC Cavy Haven is a non-profit guinea pig rescue. Founded in 2003, our mission is to rescue, rehabilitate and re-home abandoned guinea pigs.  We are dedicated to raising awareness about the plight of guinea pigs dumped in shelters and promote the idea of adoption in the community.

About Sleepypod’s Limited Edition Critter Kit

The Critter Kit consists of a mesh hammock and a litter tray. The mesh hammock, made of durable polyester, allows air to circulate around and below the pet, separating it from the litter. It also serves as cover for pets who prefer to remain hidden. The litter tray is made of easy-care and heavy-duty acrylonitrile butadiene styrene, known as ABS. ABS is acclaimed for its luster and its sturdiness.

On its own, Sleepypod Mini is three products in one: a carrier, a pet bed, and a safe car seat. Ultra plush bedding surrounded by a luggage-grade, ballistic nylon base forms the bed that easily becomes a carrier by simply zipping on its mesh dome. In a car, the crash-tested Sleepypod Mini becomes a safe car seat. Aboard an airplane, Sleepypod Mini fits comfortably under an airline seat.

Used in combination, the Sleepypod Mini may be used with its ultra plush bedding for colder climates and the Critter Kit mesh bedding utilized for warmer climates. For litter-trained pets, the litter tray is stable and strong enough to be used independent of the Sleepypod Mini. Note: critter nails should be trimmed, as appropriate for the breed, to avoid potential snagging on the mesh bedding.

Critter Kit Features

  • Mesh hammock allows air to circulate around the pet thus separating it from the litter box
  • Mesh hammock serves as a well-ventilated covering for pets that prefer to hide away
  • Mesh hammock is made of durable polyester
  • Litter tray is made of heavy duty ABS with a satin, pebble grain finish


Enter Sleepypod’s Small Pets Can Travel, Too! Giveaway

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