Cancer in Dogs – The Cancer Returns – Ramius’s Journey Part VIII

Cancer in Dogs – A Retrospective of our Beloved Samoyed Ramius’s Battle with Cancer

In This Entry – The Cancer Returns

Ramius chillin'. Chemotherapy? No problem...

Ramius chillin’ on the sofa.

Thank you for reading our continuing series about cancer in dogs, and our beloved Samoyed Ramius’s long journey with the disease, which started in the summer of 2014 and lasted until he passed away in January, 2016.

When we last left you in Part VII, we discussed Ramius’s physical therapy and rehabilitation process. Today we will talk about the unfortunate return of Ramius’s cancer.

If you’ve been following along in our series, you know that up until the summer of 2015, Ramius’s recovery had been going great. He was cancer free, and though he had his issues with mobility, it wasn’t anything we couldn’t overcome. We were expecting that essentially, we’d be dealing with an aging, cancer free Samoyed, and we were perfectly fine with that.

But things changed in the summer of 2015. One day, while we were attending to Ramius, my wife Pam noticed another growth near his butt, which of course, is the same region where he had his original cancer. Our doctors had been pretty confident that his cancer was at bay though, so at first, we remained hopeful. Perhaps it was just another benign growth that coincidentally occurred in the same area of his body. Continue reading

Top 5 Tips For Driving Cross Country with Your Samoyed

Driving Mr. Puppy

As regular readers of this blog know, we recently headed back to Chicago from LA. And of course we always have this furry fellas with us, so that means we have to drive between cities. And if you’ve never driven your dog across this beautiful country before, it can be a little daunting. But don’t worry, we’ve got 5 great tips to help you out!

Tip #1 – Mindset – Keep an Open Mind and a Good Attitude

For practical minded people, and believe me I’ve been known to be this from time to time, this may not seem like the most actionable tip. At least not at first. But trust me, it’s the most important thing I can tell you. If you don’t have a good attitude and keep positive thoughts, you’re just setting yourself up to have a miserable experience.

The good news is that in my experience, driving your dog across the country is actually much easier than you might expect. And even if you have a big dog that likes to do nothing more than run around and play all day long (cough…Sacha…cough), it can still be a great experience.

One obvious point to remember is that even though YOU know you’re going to be driving 2,000 miles, your dog doesn’t. Whenever we start off in the car, Sacha usually goes crazy and barks with excitement for the first 10 or 15 minutes before chilling out and settling down. But he always does. After a short while, he’s relaxed, and chill and settles in for the ride. And we’ve noticed too that after the first day on the road, the rest of the days of the trip he doesn’t go all crazy when he gets in the car in the morning. He just settles right in and enjoys himself.

Dogs are smart, they can tell if they’re on their way somewhere or if they’ve reached their final destination. With Sacha we find he can tell the difference between being en route to a place and arriving there. So trust that your dog will know when the journey continues and when he’s about to arrive. Continue reading

Back to the Same Old Place – Sweet Home Chicago

Sacha’s Diary May 16, 2017 – Driving Cross Country

Ready to make the diary!

Dear Diary,

Well it’s been a bit of a whirlwind these last couple of weeks. On Monday, May 1, I hopped into the SUV with my mommy and daddy in Los Angeles, and we didn’t stop until we got to Chicago! Well, that’s not exactly true. We did stop and stay in motel rooms for three nights in a row, but you get the point. After 3 days and 2,000 miles, I arrived back in my original Chicago home!

This is the second time my parents have driven me across country in the last 6 months. I have to say, I kinda like the experience. I wasn’t sure I would, but my parents do their best to make sure that I’m comfortable. Continue reading

Walking in La La Land – Sacha’s Diary

Sacha’s Diary April 1, 2017 – Taking a Hike in Griffith Park

La La Land!

Dear Diary,

There are lots of things like I really love about LA. Like Hollywood and the weather for instance. Fun fact, so many people ask my parents how I can stand the heat. Stand the heat?! What are you guys talking about who ask me that? It’s like 72 degrees and sunny every day. That’s not hot! I’m used to those Chicago summers where it’s 90 degrees in the shade and there is no shade. And yet in Chicago nobody EVER asks me or my parents how I can stand the heat? Maybe it’s because they assume I’m built to withstand those Chicago winters, which of course I am. Still, it’s just kinda funny. My daddy usually tells those people that I’m fine because I’m wearing white. I don’t really get that joke, but people do seem to laugh at it.

Anyhow, I digress. Back to LA, and one of my favorite things to do in this town is to take a hike in Griffith Park. Now if you’ve seen the movie La La Land you’ll recognize the Griffith Park Observatory, truly one of the coolest things around. Here’s a recent picture of mommy and me in front of the observatory which should look familiar to fans of the movie (except for the fact that mommy and me weren’t in the movie. Boo!).
Continue reading

KONG is King – Product Review of our Samoyed’s Favorite Dog Toy

Despite the Success of the Movie, this KONG is King in Sacha’s Opinion

KONG in King!

I’ve seen tons of advertisements about the movie “Kong: Skull Island” and honestly, I can’t wait to see it. Looks like tons of fun and stars John C. Reilly, one of my favorite actors.

But this review obviously isn’t about the latest King Kong movie, it’s about the KONG Ball, which is king in our household. It’s the awesome dog toy that Sacha just loves!

Truth be told, we’ve been buying KONG products for all of our Samoyeds for years. They are incredibly durable and so well made, and I don’t think we’ve ever had any kind of an issue with them. They’re particularly great for a big breed like Samoyeds because KONG products are able to withstand their powerful jaws.
Continue reading

Family, Friends, and Hollywood, Oh My!

Sacha’s Diary February 23, 2017

Who’s a Happy Sammy? Me! That’s Who!

Dear Diary,

Well it’s been about three months or so since my parents drove us all out to Los Angeles. I know we’ll back to Chicago soon, I mean that’s what I hear them talking about at least. That’ll be fun, I’ll get to see some of my old friends (furry or otherwise) again soon.

Which is good, because although I’ve met lots of good new friends since I’ve been out here in Hollywood (furry or otherwise), I have missed some people. I haven’t seen any of my grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins, or friends in months. And I haven’t seen any of my fellow canine friends walking around the neighborhood in Chicago. I must admit, I’ve been wondering if I was ever going to see them again. Kinda made me a little sad. 🙁

But lately, I’ve seen some familiar faces, in particular my Grandma Carole and Grandpa George! They came to visit mommy and daddy for a few days, and it was really great to see them. I think sometimes you humans need to remember that we fur babies miss our friends and family just like you do. I know all of us still really miss my brother Ramius. So I was super excited, like puppy excited, to see them!

They stayed with us for a few days and it was great for me because they didn’t leave the house all that much which meant I got lots of love and attention. And EVEN BETTER, my grandma brought a batch of her world famous Grandma Carole’s Dog Biscuit Treats for me. Woo-hoo! If you haven’t check out her recipe, be sure to do so now. Like RIGHT NOW!

Homemade Grandma Treats

But even though I do miss some of my old friends and family, I’ve met a bunch of super new cool people. Including my Auntie Rose who took that smokin’ hot picture of me. Thanks Rose!

Also, my daddy the actor has a bunch of his actor friends over here all the time, and they all seem to love me. Of course, why wouldn’t they amirite?

Actors are silly though. They seem to like pretending to be having conversations in places that don’t exist. Oh you silly humans, you slay me sometimes. I gotta love ya.

So I think I’m adjusting pretty well to this life in Hollywood! New friend, new puppies to play with here around the compound, and there’s no snow…though I must admit, I have mixed feelings about that. I am a Samoyed after all!

Before I leave you today, just for fun, check out my daddy’s friend Ryan’s hilarious video about the Hollywood Walk of Fame! Or is the Hillywood Bag of Clams? Something like that. See you soon!

Until next time Mr. Diary!!

-S

P.S. As a reminder, all posts signed off as “-S” are written by Sacha himself.

Been Chilling a Bit – But Back to Work!

Sacha’s Diary February 10, 2017

The Cubs are World Series Champions! Sorry but it never gets old :-)

The Cubs are World Series Champions! Sorry but it never gets old 🙂

Dear Diary,

Sorry for the delay in between posts. I’ve been taking an extended break and soaking up a little SoCal sun (or should I say rain…yuck!), and of course, re-watching the 2016 World Series. Daddy has the whole DVD set and he likes to watch it over and over. And over, and over, and over…well you get the idea.

And sadly, we were recently hacked here at The Smiling Samoyed as well. It’s a real shame, some people in the world are just gaping assholes. Excuse my language.

Anyway, just wanted to let you all know that we’re back up and we’ll be back in business blogging with the frequency you’ve been accustomed to.

Until next time Mr. Diary!!

-S

P.S. As a reminder, all posts signed off as “-S” are written by Sacha himself.

In Memory of Sweet Baby Ramius

Our Sweet Ramius. Always Smiling.

RIP Ramius – 8.24.03 – 1.15.16

Today is a very sad day in our household as it is the one year anniversary of the day we had to put our sweet baby Ramius to sleep. Long time readers are aware of his battle with cancer, but if you haven’t read it yet, I invite you to check out our retrospective of Ramius’s journey and battle with this horrible disease.

And as I’ve written extensively, one of the reasons we were able to have Ramius with us as long as we did is because of our great doctors and the great pet health insurance we had from Healthy Paws Pet Insurance. I urge everyone with a pet to check them out and to read my full review of their excellent service. 

Although we miss Ramius dearly, we will try to make today a celebration of his life. He was the sweetest dog in the entire world and he was my best friend ever. His smile, along with that of his siblings Zoya and Sacha, is what gave rise to the title of this blog.

Ramius relaxing on the couch with his favorite woobie,

For anyone who has ever lost a beloved pet, you know you never get over it. We will always mourn for our sweet Ramius, but at least we know he is no longer in pain. And we live with the hope that one day, we will see him again on the Rainbow Bridge.

Rest in peace, sweet baby Ramius. We love you.

Doggie Toys for the New Year – Part 1

Merry New Year!

The tennis ball still remains one of my favorite toys. And I do look stylin’ in my Cubs hat.

Happy New Year from all of your friends, furry and otherwise, at The Smiling Samoyed. We’re looking forward to a great 2017 and hope that you are too!

To kickoff the new year in the right way, we thought we’d talk about some fun toys that you can investigate for all of your furry friends. We sort of did something like this for the summer season, so it seems fitting we should do this one as well to kickoff the new year. This will be Part 1 and we’ll kickoff Part 2 shortly.

Although Sacha hasn’t tried all of these, they do seem either fun, intriguing, or at a great price that they’re worth your consideration. If any of these sound like they’re worth investigating, just click on the product name to learn more and purchase if you choose. So with that, let’s get to it!

  1. Dog Chew Toys

Who doesn’t like a good chew toy amirite? These toys are pretty cheap and come in cool shapes like a duck, elephant, and pig. From the Bang Good website:

Funny Dog Puppy Sound Chew Toys Plush Pet Squeaky Cat Dog Play Toys

  • 4.8(4 Reviews)
  • Product ID: 979411
  • Sold: 215
In stock, usually dispatched in 1 business day
Price:
US$ 3.29
Ship From:
  • CN Warehouse
Shipping:

Free shipping to United States via Standard Shipping 7-20 business days

Animal:

2. Dog Sunglasses

Now that we’re out in LA, who couldn’t use a little extra protection from the bright California sunshine? From the Bang Good website:

Pet Dogs UV Sun Glasse Eye-wear Protection Sunglasses

  • 4.9(17 Reviews)
  • | Ask a question
  • Product ID: 43671
  • Sold: 1247
In stock, usually dispatched in 1 business day
Price:
US$
4.49
US$6.51
Ship From:
  • CN Warehouse
  • US Warehouse
Shipping:

Free shipping To United States via Standard Shipping 7-20 business days

Color:

3. Dog Shaped Air Freshener

Obviously not a dog toy but at the same time, super cute! From the Bang Good website:

Car Air Freshener Cute Dog Activated Bamboo Charcoal Bag Home Clean Up Absorb Odor Deodorant

  • 4.9(52 Reviews)
  • Product ID: 1066606
  • Sold: 1492
In stock, usually dispatched in 1 business day
Price:
US$
4.98
US$8.56
VIP Price:

Upgrade your member level to enjoy VIP Price.

Ship From:
  • CN Warehouse
Shipping:

Free shipping To United States via Standard Shipping 7-20 business days

Color:

 4. Flying Frisbee

Who doesn’t like throwing the frisbee around with your pooch right? Well actually I don’t. Sacha can only be off leash in a fenced in dog park or back yard so we don’t get the opportunity to do much of this. But if we did, this would be the type of thing he’d enjoy!
From the Bang Good website:

Super-tough Frisbee Flying Disc Toy for trainning Pets Dogs

  • 5.0(2 Reviews)
  • Product ID: 960115
  • Sold: 57
In stock , usually dispatched in 1-3 business days
Price:
US$
5.99
Ship From:
  • CN Warehouse
Shipping:

Free shipping to United States via Standard Shipping 7-20 business days

5. Tennis Balls

As you can see from the above photo, Sacha’s favorite toy is still the regular old tennis ball. There are tennis courts on the property where we live now and Sacha is always looking to steal stray tennis balls no matter how gross they are.
And while that keeps down the costs, we do like to give him new tennis balls to chew on his well. This brand seems to be his favorite vintage and are sold on Amazon.

Hopefully that will give you a few ideas to get you started for the new year. What is your dog’s favorite toy? Please leave a comment and let me know!
Happy New Year and we’ll see you again soon for Part II!