Posted by: twodogtales | November 23, 2015

Dog’s blades made by local company

I get my daily dose of celebrity gossip from the Daily Mail, and they generally feature feel-good animal rescue stories as well. Turns out one about a doggie blade runner named Daisy was made possible by a local company, Animal Ortho Care in Chantilly, Va.

Animal Ortho Care makes prosthetics and braces to help animals regain mobility and a good quality of life. This photo of a device they made for a small dog without front legs is from the company’s website.


Right now they have a GoFundMe campaign raising money to make prosthetics for working elephants in Thailand who lost limbs stepping on land mines.

Keep up the good work!


Posted by: twodogtales | October 24, 2015

Oct. 25: Aging pets seminar + wine!

100_0023Silver Whiskers, Golden Bonds is a seminar being held on Sunday, Oct. 24 from 12:30 to 2:30 pm at The Barns at Hamilton Station Vineyards in Hamilton, Va. The event benefits Golden Retriever Rescue, Education and Training (GRREAT).

Local veterinarians Drs. Krisi Erwin and Leslie Sinn; counselor Marcia Keene, LPC; and attorney Joanne Dekker, Esq., will speak about recognizing and treating physical and behavioral changes in your senior pets, coping with the emotional aspects of providing end of life care for and the loss of a beloved pet, and estate planning ideas to ensure lifetime care for your pets.

Plus there will be wine and raffle prizes!

The winery is at 16804 Hamilton Station Rd, Hamilton, VA 20158.

Posted by: twodogtales | October 19, 2015

Dog-friendly hike: Burke Lake Park

If you’re looking for a scenic, flat terrain, dog-friendly hike within a 30-minute drive of the city, I recommend Burke Lake Park in Virginia’s Fairfax County. The trees are just starting to turn color, over the next few weeks it’s going to be a really pretty and peaceful walk.


The park is located at 7315 Ox Road, Fairfax Station, VA 22039. It encompasses 888 acres, including a 218-acre lake. We hiked the Burke Lake Loop Trail, which is a 4.7-mile paved and gravel path all around the lake. Waterfront benches are placed  in many places along the trail if you want to take a break and take in the views.   


There were plenty of runners and walkers (with and without dogs) as well as bikers on the trail in the middle of a Sunday afternoon, but not so many that you felt like you weren’t communing with nature. I imagine in the summer, however, it could get crowded. Leash laws are enforced. For the most part, anyone passing had the courtesy to give a “On your left!” warning call.


April through October there is a $10 per car charge on weekends for non-Fairfax county residents. Be prepared to show your ID to prove residency. Once in the park there are a number of parking lots.

Posted by: twodogtales | October 14, 2015

Wordless Wednesday: Dog park mural

Back in 2012, Wag More Dogs lost their battle with Arlington County over the mural decorating the side of their building that faces the Shirlington dog park. The cute frolicking dogs were replaced with odd, otherworldly figures that looked like they belonged in a Maurice Sendak book.

But I’m happy to report on my last visit to the park, the mural has again been changed. This time it features animals dogs love to chase—cats, squirrels, mice and bunnies—as well as happy images of the DC monuments. I guess as long as no DOGS are shown in artwork facing a DOG park, Arlington County might actually focus on more important things, like potholes and getting Fios into Shirlington.





Posted by: twodogtales | September 24, 2015

Old Town pool dog swim: in pictures

The girls had a blast—along with about 100 other dogs—during the Old Town Alexandria pool’s Big Dog Day Swim last weekend, Sept. 19. Special thanks to Your Dog’s Best Friends doggie daycare for sponsoring the event. My apologies that Sundae spent most of the event begging from your treat table!







Posted by: twodogtales | September 14, 2015

Alexandria dog parks are in jeopardy!

Protect Alexandria’s dog parks! The Alexandria Parks and Recreation Commission is considering a proposal to remove the designation of three unfenced dog exercise areas. There will be a public hearing on Thursday, Sept. 17, at 7:00 pm at the Mt. Vernon Recreation Center, 2701 Commonwealth Ave. to receive public comment on the proposal.

The dog exercise areas under consideration for elimination are:

The Commission is also seeking comments regarding the status of other designated unfenced dog exercise areas.

The proposal means getting rid of the areas, not fencing them in. It is important for dog owners to participate in the hearing and protect these exercise areas, or demand that the city replace them with fenced or alternate areas. The suburbs inside the Beltway are densely populated, and dog exercise areas are frequently the only place condo-, apartment- or townhouse-dwelling dog owners can play off-leash with their pups.

The community’s voice DOES matter. Back in 2011, Arlington County instituted a rule banning children from the Shirlington dog park. After significant protest from park users and media attention, Arlington backed off and rescinded the rule.

Learn more about the proposal.

Find out about all of Alexandria’s dog parks, animal legislation and licensing here.

Posted by: twodogtales | September 11, 2015

Dogs rule at the pool this weekend!


The fun is over at most outdoor pools for people this summer, but not for dogs! Letting my dogs swim in a pool is one of the only reasons I look forward to the end of summer (pro football is another).

This Saturday, Sept. 12, from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm, the Northern Virginia Regional Park Authority opens all five of their water parks for Dog Day swims!

The five water parks are:

Great Waves Waterpark, Alexandria

Ocean Dunes Waterpark, Arlington

Atlantis Waterpark, Centreville

Pirates Cove at Pohick Bay, Lorton

Volcano Island Waterpark, Sterling

The cost is $5 per dog, and there must be an adult human handler for each dog.

Another dog swim on Saturday, out in Leesburg, is Ida Lee Park’s Aquatic Center. It is also from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm, with a two dog limit and age restriction on human handlers of 16 years or older.

Posted by: twodogtales | September 9, 2015

Wordless Wednesday: RIP, Marmaduke.

The creator of the Marmaduke comic strip has passed away at age 91 in Texas.


Posted by: twodogtales | August 23, 2015

Product review: Puppy Treads for slippery surfaces

The Handi-Ramp company asked me to review one of their products, Puppy Treads. They are vinyl rectangular-shaped stickers with a textured surface that you apply to indoor surfaces such as hardwood or tile steps or floors to help keep your dog, and you, from slipping.


I totally wish they’d been about a year earlier.

Within a week after moving into our new house with oak hardwood stairs, Chatham had slipped and slid down the steps a half dozen times. The morning she refused to come downstairs, standing at the top step whining, it broke my heart.

I went out that day and bought six seasonal rubber-backed rugs adorned with smiley-faced snowmen, cut them in half, and applied them to the stairs with double-sided tape. The headless Frostys were both obnoxiously ugly and slightly disturbing. I’m not sorry I don’t have a picture to prove it. We lived with those for four months, until we paid about $1,000 we didn’t really have to spare to have a runner professionally installed.

The Puppy Treads would have been the perfect temporary solution.

I say temporary because Puppy Treads are very functional, but not particularly fashionable. Yes, they’re a clear vinyl so they don’t stick out like a sore (snow) thumb. But neither are they invisible. They’d look fine in a mudroom, foyer, or basement or garage steps. But they didn’t really blend well with the dressy living room.


Puppy Treads are, however, effective, simple to use, and well priced. They are $7.99 each, or $69.95 for a pack of 10. Most other stair tread products are made of carpet material, and run anywhere from $60 to $120 for just four pieces.

To apply them, all you do is peel the backing paper off and smooth the tread down into place. At first they had almost an opaque appearance, and you could see foot and paw prints, but after a day or so the print impressions were gone.

I used the Puppy Treads on the landing, where the dogs come tearing down the steps and make a sharp turn to the living room. Without something there to give them traction, they slide into the wall. The Treads worked. The dogs didn’t slip, and the Treads never shifted out of place.


Even better, when I removed the Treads, they came up easily and didn’t damage or leave a sticky residue on the wood floors at all. I’d even venture to say there was enough “stick” left that if you applied them, then decided to move them somewhere else, you probably could at least once.

They also were simple to clean. I vacuumed over them, Swiffered the dog hair off, and wiped mud up with just a wet sponge.

My one other caveat is that you can only use Puppy Treads on a flat, indoor surface, according to the instructions. Last week, I visited a friend with metal stairs from her patio to her lawn, and Chatham slipped. A version for outdoor use would be great.

If you want to try Puppy Treads, Handi-Ramp is offering a 10% discount if you use the code BLOG2015.

Two Dog Tales received the Puppy Treads product at no cost, but was not otherwise compensated for this review.

Posted by: twodogtales | August 17, 2015

Wags n’ Whiskers at Shirlington Village Aug. 22

IMG_2580_BuckwheatThe best pet-friendly outdoor dining neighborhood in the whole greater DC area is hosting an all-afternoon celebration of pets this Saturday, Aug. 22. Wags n’ Whiskers is from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm at the Village at Shirlington in Arlington, Va.

This year more than 60 vendors will be on hand with pet products and services, rescue groups and more. There will also be $5 pet photos, live music and children’s activities such as face painting, balloon art and strolling entertainment.

Nearly all of the restaurants in the village are dog-friendly, and many even have bowls of fresh water out for your pup while you dine al fresco. You can also check out the new Shirlington Animal Hospital that went into the former dental office space, near the Dogma Bakery & Boutique on the lower level.

Here are some pics from past W&W events.

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