Invisible Treats: The Best Kind

Would your dog be fooled? Until next time, Good day, and good dog!


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Good Boy Dog Beer

Houston bar owners have launched a line of non-alcoholic beer for dogs, containing vitamins and minerals to supplement their regular food. No word on whether or not there’s a green variety for this weekend, but I suppose you could just add food coloring? Until next time, Good day, and good dog!


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6 Ways Playing With Dolls Benefits A Child’s Development

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How Playing With Dolls Benefits A Child's Development

This sponsored post is in partnership with Baby Born Surprise. Thank you for supporting the brands that help make Bubby and Bean possible.

Between having two kids in preschool and the developmental therapy that my son Emmett received as a baby and toddler for his epilepsy, I’ve learned a lot about the different things that affect a child’s development. Most of them have little do with academics and more to do with play. One of the things that the development therapist talked a lot about to us was the many ways that playing with dolls can have positive effects on littles ones as they grow. Both my kids love nurturing and playing with their dolls, but my daughter especially enjoys it. This, of course, makes me really happy, because it’s a double win to see her having so much fun with toys that I know are good for her. I know many of your little ones enjoy playing with dolls as well, so I’m very excited to be teaming up with Baby Born Surprise, Essley’s current favorite dolls, to share some of the ways that playing with dolls can be beneficial.

How Playing With Dolls Benefits A Child's Development
How Playing With Dolls Benefits A Child's Development

1. Playing with dolls helps develop children’s imaginations.
Any kind of dramatic play – which is exactly what kids are doing when they play with dolls – helps develop a child’s imagination. I watch both of my kids come up with elaborate pretend scenes and situations with their dolls, both alone and together, that are not only endearing (and often hilarious), but also incredibly creative.

2. Playing with dolls together (child and parent) helps set up success for future relationships. 
Like most families, we are always busy. Taking the time to play together, especially with a child’s favorite toys (like my daughter’s Baby Born Surprise dolls), creates bonding time together that will ultimately help them in their relationships and social skills as they grow. When I first got these adorable dolls for Essley, we sat together as she unboxed them. (Surprise toys are her absolute favorite!) It was exciting for both of us to unwrap the bundles of surprises together and discover the cutest swaddles (a mermaid, a pink poodle, and a white bunny), the dolls’ eye colors (two blues and a “green like mommy!”) and darling hair colors/styles, and their fun color changing diapers. We then filled out the birth certificates each doll came with and played the games on them, and just spent some quality time together playing. She told me that night before bed that it was the best day of her life, so I’d say our bonding time was a success. We have continued playing with her Baby Born Surprise dolls every day for the last couple of weeks. It’s pretty awesome to know that our time together is also establishing a foundation for her future relationships.

How Playing With Dolls Benefits A Child's Development
How Playing With Dolls Benefits A Child's Development
How Playing With Dolls Benefits A Child's Development

3. Playing with dolls helps children learn empathy and compassion.
I distinctly remember my son’s developmental therapist pointing out what a wonderful step that was to see him picking up a doll and nurturing it by wrapping it in a blanket and pretending to feed it. She said that this type of caring for a doll was a building block for him feeling empathy toward other humans. My daughter is constantly wrapping her Baby Born Surprise in their swaddles and blankets, feeding them water in their bottles, and changing their diapers. (The three water surprises that come with these adorable dolls might be her favorite part – she can use water to open baby’s eyes, feed baby, and after baby “pees,” her diaper changes color to reveal a pattern. So fun!)

4. Playing with dolls teaches children about the world around them.
Play in general is how children discover the world around them and learn skills that they’ll practically use in the future, and role playing with dolls is one of the best ways to do this. My daughter has three Baby Born Surprise dolls, and loves to act out scenarios where they’re sisters going about daily life. She has so much fun doing this, but subconsciously, it is also preparing her for the real world.

How Playing With Dolls Benefits A Child's Development
How Playing With Dolls Benefits A Child's Development

5. Playing with dolls can help children with fine motor skills.
The act of playing with hands on toys like dolls can help develop and improve a child’s fine motor skills. I watch my daughter use her hands and fingers to carefully swaddle and unswaddle her Baby Born Surprise dolls, feed them with their little bottles, and change their little diapers, and know that in addition to her having fun, she’s working on her fine motor skills without even knowing it!

6. Playing with dolls helps children to learn about emotions and feelings.
I remember my son’s developmental therapist talking about how children often express or work through emotions through their dolls, which is an important way for them to learn about their own feelings and the feelings of others. Both of my kids use their dolls to act out emotions from sadness to joy to grumpiness, which is subconsciously helping them learn to express their own emotions in healthy ways.

How Playing With Dolls Benefits A Child's Development
How Playing With Dolls Benefits A Child's Development

I have to say, one of the most interesting and magical parts of being a parent for me is discovering just how much my kids are learning and developing through everyday play. If your little one enjoys playing with dolls like mine do, I highly recommend getting them a Baby Born Surprise. It’s been such a pleasure to see how much my daughter adores playing with hers. And if you know of other ways playing with dolls benefits a child’s development that I might have missed, I’d love to hear about it!

This sponsored post is in partnership with Baby Born Surprise. Thank you for supporting the brands that help make Bubby and Bean possible.

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2019 Iditarod: We Have a Winner!

Peter Kaiser arrives in Nome, winning the 47th running of the Iditarod. Here’s the rest of the top ten, as of 4:30 pm ET on Wednesday, 3/13/19: 1 Peter Kaiser (9) In to Nome 2 Joar Leifseth Ulsom (28) In to Nome 3 Jessie Royer (14) In to Nome 4 Aliy Zirkle (19) Out of […]


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Iditarod Standings as of 9:20 pm ET, Saturday 3/9/2019

Nicolas Petit has slipped down to 2nd place, getting in to Kaltag 3 minutes after Peter Kaiser. 1 Peter Kaiser (9) In to Kaltag 2 Nicolas Petit (20) In to Kaltag 3 Joar Leifseth Ulsom (28) Out of Eagle Island 4 Jessie Royer (14) Out of Eagle Island 5 Matthew Failor (17) Out of Eagle […]


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Raccoons in Ireland

raccoon

Europe has no living native Procyonids.  Germany and the countries on which it borders do have a well-established population of raccoons, but the British Isles were thought to be raccoon-free. In fact, I refused to watch one version of 101 Dalmatians because it featured raccoons in England. Every English person knows there aren’t any raccoons running around.

However, the same cannot be said of Ireland. Rumors of errant raccoons have been filtering through the internet for quite some time. I got wind of it in 2011, when raccoons were sighted in County Cork. 

I didn’t think it was possible that there could be a breeding population in Ireland, but in recent months, a raccoon was hit by car in County Clare back in September.

In November, a raccoon was live-trapped and humanely euthanized in Cork.

These might be errant escaped pets, but errant escaped pets are the basis for a potential breeding population. And if you think that sounds far-fetched, well, Germany has a growing population of raccoons that were introduced in the 1930s.

Ireland has a much milder climate than most of North America, and this species of raccoon lives where the winters can be quite harsh.

These sightings could very well be the start of a real problem in Ireland. Raccoons are the ultimate mesopredator in that they relish raiding bird nests and even killing ground-nesting birds and poultry. Their numbers have flourished in North America since the widespread extirpation of wolves and cougars, and in Ireland, they would likely find a paradise. They would have to compete with badgers and red foxes, but because they are such adept climbers, they would also have access to food sources in trees.

We can hope that an established population of raccoons isn’t being founded in Ireland right now, but I almost wouldn’t bet against it.  They do very well on the continent. Ireland is ripe fruit, reading for the clawed hands to pick.

Natural History

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Win an Animal Abuse Awareness T-Shirt! #Giveaway

Help shine a light and spread awareness on the subject of animal abuse with our Animal Abuse Awareness T-shirt! This shirt features a cause ribbon designed exclusively for our PawZaar gift store….



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DogTipper

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6 Benefits of Reading to Our Children

6 Benefits of Reading to Our Children

This post is in partnership with Dr. Seuss Enterprises. Thank you for supporting the brands that help make Bubby and Bean possible. 

You guys have heard me mention many times how important books are in my kids’ lives. From the time I found out I was pregnant with my daughter, I started gathering books for her. I also kept most of my childhood books. So between the books I’ve gotten for my little ones, the books they’ve been given by friends and family, and my own childhood books, they have quite the library, and we spend a lot of time reading together. Both my kids also love going to the library for story time, and have books read to them everyday at preschool. I even got to go read a book to my daughter’s preschool class earlier this week in honor of the upcoming 115th birthday of author Theodor Seuss Geisel (aka Dr. Seuss!), which I absolutely cherished. We love our books!

While it’s common knowledge that books are good for kids’ brains, I had no idea until recently just how beneficial it can be to read to our children, even before they can read themselves. From different studies I’ve come across to discussions with my kids’ teachers, I’ve discovered so much about how reading to little ones helps them learn and grow. I’ve also learned that while electronic books and apps that encourage kids to read independently can be fun, there is no replacement for adults actually reading to children.

With this Saturday (March 2nd) being the birthday of Dr. Seuss, one of my little ones’ and my all time favorite authors, I thought I’d share some of the benefits to reading to our kids, while also sharing some of our most loved Dr. Seuss books.

6 Benefits of Reading to Our Children
6 Benefits of Reading to Our Children

1. Reading to young children teaches them about the world around them.
My son started speaking later than my daughter, but when we pulled out books, he would immediately point out objects he recognized from life like cars, balls, airplanes, animals, etc., and attempt to name them. In turn, he would see images in books and then recognize them in the world. There is little better than seeing the overjoyed reactions of a toddler recognizing things in daily life that he or she learned about in a book!

2. Reading to children increases their vocabulary and helps with speech and language.
As I mentioned in #1 above, reading to my son really helped his speech take off. Listening to a book being read helps children not only learn new words, but also learn about sentence structure and other aspects of language. Books like “The Cat In the Hat” and “Hop on Pop” by Dr. Seuss that use rhyming, repetition, and rhythm are especially great for helping to learn phonics and develop language skills.

6 Benefits of Reading to Our Children
6 Benefits of Reading to Our Children
6 Benefits of Reading to Our Children

3. Reading to children helps develop their imaginations.
You’ll notice that when you read a book, your brain creates images of people, places, events, etc. This same creative imagination exists in a child’s brain when you read to him or her. I notice after I read a book to my daughter, she’ll act out scenes from the book with her toys. It is incredible to watch how she interprets what was read to her. This is another reason I love Dr. Seuss books – the stories are so wonderfully full of fantasy and imagination, which encourages kids to think creatively. “Oh, the Thinks You Can Think!” is one of our favorites for showing children that their imaginations have endless possibilities.

4. Reading to children teaches them important life lessons.
Young children haven’t had a great deal of life experience, but reading books to them can help them learn about some of life’s greatest lessons. My daughter took a huge interest in the earth and environmentalism after reading Dr. Seuss’s “The Lorax.” “Horton Hears A Who!” has been wonderful for teaching my kids that “A person’s a person, no matter how small.” And “Oh the Places You’ll Go!” is a life-long favorite of mine for talking about the journey of life and the challenges and triumphs that come with it.

6 Benefits of Reading to Our Children
6 Benefits of Reading to Our Children
6 Benefits of Reading to Our Children

5. Reading to children helps them learn about feelings and develop empathy.
I have noticed firsthand that my kids have learned more about different feelings and understanding the feelings of others from books than anywhere else. When we read to them, we take time to discuss the characters’ feelings as well, which has helped them to understand the importance of empathy and compassion.

6. Reading to children helps motivate them to read independently.
According to Reading Is Fundamental, reading aloud to kids lets parents and teachers be role models for reading, which in turn makes kids want to read too. When a child sees an adult excited about reading, he or she feels excited as well, and thus more motivated to learn to read. My preschool aged daughter is already beginning to read on her own, and has such great enthusiasm as she practices. She says she wants to be able to read books to her little brother and to her friends, just like mommy and daddy read to her.

6 Benefits of Reading to Our Children
6 Benefits of Reading to Our Children
6 Benefits of Reading to Our Children

I also think it’s important to note that in addition to the developmental benefits children reap as a result of us reading to them, it’s beneficial for us as adults too! Reading to my kids is one of my most beloved bonding experiences. I cherish having that time together where we’re all engaged, and it also brings back fond memories of my own childhood. I can’t wait to snuggle up for Dr. Seuss’s birthday on March 2nd and read “The Lorax” and “Oh, The Places You’ll Go” with my babes. The best! There will also be free reading events to commemorate Dr. Seuss’s birthday this Saturday at Target stores throughout the United States. Visit here for more info.

Happy Birthday Dr. Seuss! You may no longer be with us, but I’m so grateful that your legacy lives on through the hundreds of books you wrote.

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What Would We Do Without Skype?

So sweet! Until next time, Good day, and good dog!


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THE AMERICAN KENNEL CLUB JOINS WITH EEM WORLD TO HOST THE AKC AGILITY PREMIER CUP PRESENTED BY EEM

From The Dog Lady’s mailbag: The American Kennel Club and EEM will host the first-ever 2019 AKC Agility Premier Cup presented by EEM to be held in conjunction with the Longines Masters of New York. The event will take place on Thursday April 25th from 4 P.M.- 9 P.M. at NYCB Live at the newly […]


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