Category Archives: Stuff About Your Sammie

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

10 Reasons to be Thankful for Samoyeds – Happy Thanksgiving!

Top 10 Reasons to be Thankful for Samoyeds

Sacha says Happy Thanksgiving!

Sacha says Happy Thanksgiving!

On this day for which we give thanks, I wanted to take a quick moment to talk about why we are so thankful for our Samoyeds. Which seems appropriate since this is a blog devoted to Samoyeds.

We’re thankful for so many things from all three of our Samoyeds, Zoya, Ramius, and of course our current Samoyed Sacha. This could be a list of 100, but who would read that right? So, here are the Top 10 Reasons to be Thankful for Samoyeds this Thanksgiving/
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Do Dogs Know When You Leave? – Tips to Reduce the Stress

Sacha’s Diary, September 8, 2016

Dear Diary,

This past Saturday, my mommy and daddy left the house with a bunch of suitcases. And not only that, they had a friend of theirs, Ariel, staying over at the house the night before.

Sacha Chewing His Bone

Sacha Chewing His Bone

I know this pattern pretty well, and it always makes me nervous. When this happens, it means my parents are going out of town somewhere on a trip, and they’re not taking me with them. Usually, I go with them whenever we travel somewhere that’s close by, so if I’m not with them, they’re probably far away. This makes me sad 🙁

You see for me, I never know when they’re coming back. Is it the next day, next week, next month? I have no idea and it stresses me out! I know mommy and daddy are trying to tell me when they’ll be back, but you humans speak some sort of weird language and we Samoyeds never know what you’re saying. You frustrate me. Silly humans!

Anyway, there are some things I’d like to recommend to my readers out there that you can do to make things less stressful for your Samoyed while you’re out of town for a few days. All of these tips are things that work really well for me. Continue reading

Happy Birthday Sweet Ramius

Best Friend Ramius

Many people feel that dogs are humans’ best friend and you can certainly count me among them. This was never more true for me than with our sweet baby Ramius.

Happy Birthday Ramius!

Happy Birthday Ramius!

Ramius passed away of cancer in January, 2016. I’m about to undertake a whole series of blog posts on this site dedicated to Ramius and his long battle with cancer. I can tell you that will be very painful for me.

But today, I want to think only happy thoughts and post this birthday wish in honor of our baby boy. Ramius would’ve turned 13 today.

If you’re wondering if his name sounds familiar, Ramius is named after Sean Connery’s character in the great film, The Hunt for Red October, based on the book of the same name by Tom Clancy.

Ramius was the sweetest dog on the planet. Always filled with love, always ready to play, and always happy to be hugged and petted. I used to refer to him as “Best Friend Ramius,” because he truly was. I’ve got tears streaming down my face as I write this and my wife and I still miss him dearly. We always will.

Happy birthday sweet Ramius! We love you and miss you. We’ll all see each other again on the Rainbow Bridge.


Cruisin Canines – Our Recommended Dog Walkers for Chicago!

Professional Dog Walkers – Yes or No?

Today I want to talk to you in general about the importance of having a professional dog walker, and specifically recommend the company we use in Chicago called Cruisin’ Canines.

If you have a job that requires you to be gone for most or all of the day during the week, as many of us do, have you considered hiring a dog walker to take care of your pooch while you’re away? If you live in a neighborhood where you have the option to hire a professional dog walker, I highly recommend you look into it.


Zoya says, “Cruisin’ Canines Walked Me!”

As readers of this blog know, we’ve had a total of three Samoyeds dating back to 1996. First we had Zoya, then Ramius, and now of course Sacha. For our first couple of years with Zoya, we actually didn’t use a dog walker. And both my wife and I were gone all day every day during the week. Fortunately, we realized that situation wasn’t the best thing for Zoya, so we began investigating different dog walkers in our area. That’s when we found a company called Cruisin’ Canines that is run by the husband and wife team of Pam and Paul. Continue reading

Chicago Air & Water Show – Damn it Feels Good to be Dogsta!

Going to the Chicago Air & Water Show – Sacha’s Diary August 22, 2016

Chicago Skyline

Chicago Skyline


Dear Diary,

Yesterday, my parents walked me down to Lake Michigan to watch the Chicago Air & Water Show. This was the 58th show which happens annually every August in Chicago over a weekend. It’s a pretty cool event and it’s free! Which doesn’t matter much to me, since I don’t pay the bills. But I know my Mommy and Daddy appreciate it! 🙂

My parents tend to go most years but this was the first time I got to go too. Wow, was it loud! Lots of cool military aircraft flying around the city and the skyline. This year’s performers included the U.S. Army Parachute Team Golden Knights and the U.S. Navy Parachute Team Leap Frogs. Continue reading

Dog Training Tips for Behavior Problems – Fun Tool Helps Determine if Your Dog is Dominant

Is Your Dog a Dominant Dog?

Our dogs are fascinating right? We see them do all kinds of things throughout the day and wonder…why does he do that? What does that mean? Is he trying to tell me something?

And how come when he sits on the couch he refuses to move out of the way when I try to sit down? And for that matter, why does he insist on sleeping on the bed?

There are a million of these sorts of things right?

Well here’s another fun tool for you to try out. This one will help determine if your dog is exhibiting behaviors of dominance, and it comes courtesy of Train Pet Dog. At the end, you’ll have an opportunity to get some training tips and information if you’d like.

Based on my traffic stats, a lot of you are really digging the Dog Breed Selector Tool I posted not that long ago. This tool is in the same spirit. Of course you don’t have to be a pet parent to a Samoyed in order to take the test, it will apply to whatever kind of pooch you have.

It only takes a minute and it may help you get some useful information about your dog’s tendencies and behavior. Again, just like the Dog Breed Selector Tool, this is mainly for fun. However, after completing the test, you will have a chance to download a personalized report and get more training advice and information from the folks at Train Pet Dog.

Give it a try! If you like it, please leave me a comment and let me know what you think.

P.S. Oh, if you’re having trouble taking the test, you may need to temporarily disable your pop-up blocker.

Samoyed Dominant Tool by TrainPetDog

Do Dogs Dream – Is Your Samoyed a Grouchy Sleeper?

The Sleeping Samoyed

Sacha Sleeping

Sacha Sleeping – Shhh!!!

lf you’ve ever wondered if your dog dreams, you’re not alone. I think the question, ‘do dogs dream?’ has crossed the mind of many pet parents at one point or another. You might hear your fur baby snore, breathe hard, twitch, groan, or make other strange sounds when they’re asleep. It’s only natural to wonder what’s going on.

Stanley Coren, Ph.D, a psychologist and expert on canine behavior published an article a few years ago that argues dogs definitely do dream. He certainly knows more about the subject than I do, but I think he’s right.

We’ve seen our three Samoyeds, Zoya, Ramius, and Sacha, all exhibit signs of dreaming from time to time.  When Ramius was still alive we’d often see him kicking his legs a little bit when we was fast asleep. He seemed so happy and content. My wife and I used to joke that Ramius was chasing rabbits again. Miss you so much Ramius! 🙁 Continue reading

Is Pet Insurance Worth It for Dogs? – Read On!

One important question for most pet owners is whether or not to invest in pet health insurance. Specifically, is pet insurance worth it for dogs? I have experience both having pet health insurance for our puppies and not having it, and I can understand both arguments. But that said, now that I do have pet insurance for Sacha, I would never, ever have a dog without getting them insured from day one.

Having Pet Insurance is Critical


To me, this is really a simple calculation. If you have health insurance for yourself and your family, then you should make sure your pet is covered as well. Our dogs are members of our family. And I would not let them go without coverage any more than I’d let any other member of the family go without coverage. For me, it doesn’t get any more simple than that.

As responsible pet parents, we know that when we bring our Samoyed (or other pets) home with us, we’re taking on a tremendous responsibility. These furry faced loved ones are completely dependent on us for everything. For their food, their water, their happiness, their well being, and of course, their health. You need to know this and accept it before you decide to take on the responsibility of becoming a pet parent. Continue reading

Dogs that are Good Kids – Or Should I Say with Kids

How I Spent My Summer Vacation – Sacha’s Diary July 11, 2016

Time for me to Make the Diary!

Dear Diary,

Haha! See what I did there? I put “dogs that are good kids” in the blog post title. Now what I obviously meant to say is dogs that are good with kids. We Samoyeds are cute, but we’re not too good with the grammar sometimes. And I know I should change the title of the post, but it’s kinda funny so I think I’ll just leave it 🙂

Back to you Mr. Diary. This last week, I got to spend time up at our cottage in Wisconsin. Let me tell you, all of this blogging is tiring and I really needed the break! You know what that’s like, amiright friends?!

Well a week or so up on the lake was just what I needed to recharge my batteries. I love just hanging out our porch, enjoying the nice summer breezes, maybe even having a cold beverage or two. I don’t know why but my the water just seems to taste better out of my bowl up there.  Continue reading