Monday, October 24, 2016

Francesca Explores the Columbia Gorge: Waterfalls and Wolves

Well, I've recovered from my harrowing experience in the Columbia River Gorge this weekend. Cinnamon insists I write about it so here we go...

It was a pretty nice day so my owner asked if I could join in with a group going to the Starvation Creek State Park. I didn't like the sound of that at all so I took some extra dog treats with me just in case there was any starving to be done!

It was a long ride, much longer than to any dog park I've ever been to so I knew this trip would be special.

I'd much rather go hunting.
We parked and got out of the car. There were huge yellow leaves and some trails. Other dogs were getting out of their cars to go hiking too. Once our friend got there, we headed out on a paved trail. Now that's ok, but I'd much rather go off-trail and sniff for wildlife. But we were hunting for waterfalls, I was told, so I stayed on the paved path.

Soon we got to a waterfall named Hole in the Wall waterfall. I looked longingly at the creek and wanted to go wading, look for frogs and fish, and have fun. But noo..... I had to stay on the path.

I looked longingly at the creek.
After that, we did go farther and even sniffed around for mushrooms in the forest. It wasn't until we were on the way back that I encountered... the WOLVES!

We were minding our own business on the paved trail when I spied them in the distance. Two huge wolves! I immediately started barking a warning to them. "Back off, Wolves," I said. My owner tried to keep me quiet but I absolutely had to bark and scare them. They glared at me.

We made it safely to Starvation Creek. I was a little scared because of the name of the creek but my interest in wading and climbing around the rocks diverted my attention. The water was rushing fast. No frogs or fish to be seen. It was kind of fun.
Here I am sniffing for fish.

I sniffed the moss on the boulders too.
But all of a sudden I smelled something I didn't like at all... WOLVES! My hair stood on end. I looked around and, because of the rocks, I didn't see anything at first. But then I saw them... looking down at me.
The wolves were hiding behind this tree.
They were talking about how to pounce on me!
I saw them and started barking. They howled and yipped terrible wolf sounds. They were really scary. My owner helped me hide in the creek. Eventually they left. I guess they figured I had gotten away. I was really scared and walked carefully all the way back making sure I didn't see or smell them. After all, they would have killed me! Really!

Once I was safely back at the car, I didn't want to go in my crate. I was still on the lookout for wolves. Eventually, I got so tired I went into my crate and slept all the way home.

So that, dear friends, is my near death encounter with WOLVES!

Love, Francesca

Saturday, October 8, 2016

Luxury Getaway to the San Juan Islands… And bring the dog too!

I’ve been talking for weeks about a very special trip I was going to take… a luxury getaway for me, Cinnamon the Coonhound. The destinations? Anacortes, Washington and San Juan Island, Washington.

We sailed from Anacortes to Friday Harbor and Back Again
on a huge car ferry.
I felt totally pampered and had a great time exploring these northwest Washington destinations. And now that I am home resting up, I’ll tell you all about it.

Dog-friendly Anacortes
When you take a ferry to the San Juan Islands, you’ll most often be leaving from Anacortes on Fidalgo, Island. So we decided to luxuriate a bit before leaving on the ferry. If you stay overnight, check out the beautiful Majestic Inn and Spa. Dogs under 25 pounds (I only wish I was that svelte) are welcome and there is a $50 pet fee.

This is the Majestic Inn in Anacortes
They treat dogs well. But there is a 25 pound limit!
But look at what you get… treats, a doggy bone, cleanup baggies, and a welcome sheet for local dog parks, trails, and grooming services. Dog beds as well as food and water bowls are also available upon request.

But there are lots of interesting places to stay. Travelocity has a great listing of pet-friendly accommodations in the Anacortes area.

What did I like about Anacortes? I enjoyed their downtown dog park with views of the yacht harbor. After chasing a couple of balls there, it was time for a walk along the docks at the Cap Sante Marina. We saw yachts and sailboats for sale, some of the famous (and funny) Anacortes murals and even some of the fish label trash can art. I nosed around the huge W.T. Preston Snagboat ‘cause there was a nice grassy spot that attracted me.
Yacht shopping at the Cap Sante Marina in Anacortes
Who the heck are these people and why are they memorialized in a mural?
The W.T. Preston Snag Boat had a nice little grassy place for
me to nose around.
And after that, we walked downtown, peeked in windows and planned for our pre-ferry walk the next morning. Next time I go to Anacortes I’ll check out their wooded hiking trails. They have tons of scenic places for dogs to hike.

I was up bright and early and we drove the short distance to the Ferry Landing. We paid, parked in line and found a trail down to the small beach and noticed a boardwalk in the distance. This was the place my dog-friend Hazel’s owner told us about. It was the Ship Harbor Interpretive Preserve. To get to the boardwalk trail you just take one of the paths to the beach and hop on over. You can see birds and, if you are lucky, chase a rabbit!
Here I am waiting for the ferry to arrive.

Luxury Ferry Ride
Soon it was time to get back to the car because the ferry was in. I sat in the front seat so I could get a good view. They loaded us on and, since this was the beginning of the off-season, the whole second car deck was empty. I could walk around and pretend I owned the ferry! We also went through the “people deck” where I sniffed the food they had for sale at the snack bar. But dogs have to remain outside… fooey! It was a beautiful, smooth crossing. My ears flapped in the wind.  I watched for whales but we didn’t see any. I thought there might be bears and deer on the islands we passed.
Even on the car deck, my ears flapped in the wind
as I sniffed the air and enjoyed the ferry trip. It was only about an hour
but the scenery was to die for!

Friday Harbor and My Impressive Penthouse
Once we docked in Friday Harbor we were the first ones to drive off the ferry. We turned right and saw our home for the next two days, Island Inn at 123 West. I walked up the office and was greeted by the staff who gave me a treat. Now they know how to win a coonhound’s heart! I noticed a dog bed and toys and was told that they were for the resident dog…. not really for me!
This is where we stayed in Friday Harbor. Doesn't it remind you of the architecture of
Portland's Pearl District. Our Penthouse was at the top left.. the yellow walls with windows.
Then up the outdoor stairs we went. We climbed to the very top to Penthouse 7, our luxury accommodation. We opened the beautiful doors and there it was! A Euro-chic penthouse with huge windows and hardwood floors. There was original art throughout this one-bedroom, two bath, full-kitchen HUGE penthouse. And, next to the fireplace was something just for me!
They really know how to treat dogs at Island Inn 123 West!
A raised set of stainless bowls, a dog bed, a towel in case I want to relax on the couch (I did that),
pick up bags, cookies and a special dog paw sign. How luxurious is this!
Of course I needed some food and water in my fancy raised stainless steel bowls. And, perhaps one of those special treats!
Island Inn at 123 West has three dog friendly spaces.
I got to play with my new toy in our Penthouse.
After we checked out the penthouse, we decided it was time to explore San Juan Island. We picked up a lunch at the San Juan Island Cheese Company and headed for the dog park! Near the airport we found Eddie and Friends Dog Park, a two-acre park with woods and balls to chase. There were a couple of island dogs there but I just wanted to sniff around.
Here I am sniffing around at Eddie and Friends Dog Park
But we had much more to see. We drove for awhile and turned in to American Camp National Historic Park. When Great Britain and the United States in 1859 agreed to a joint occupation of San Juan Island until the water boundary between the two nations could be settled, it was decided that camps would be located on opposite ends of the island. This is where the Americans hung out.
My owner thought the whitewashed buildings were beautiful.
There were buildings and fences. We hiked around and then saw a trail to Granny’s Cove. Now my owner is a Grandmother so we decided we MUST see Granny’s Cove. I did a lot of sniffing on that hike. I think ground squirrels and rabbits used those trails. Then we saw it… the ocean and Granny’s Cove. I wanted to go down to the beach but my owner wouldn’t let me.
Here I am at Granny's Cove wishing I could
go play on the beach but noooo....
We did some more sightseeing in the car (because I was tired) and then headed back to the Penthouse for dinner and a relaxing evening watching…. What? The Vice Presidential Candidate’s Debate? I would have much preferred The Animal Channel.

It got chilly so we turned on the gas fireplace and I went to sleep cuddled up on the couch warmed by the glow of the fire. It had been a good day and I was truly luxuriating.
Good Night!

San Juan Island – Sunny Day
Our day started at dawn.
I couldn't blame my owner for waking me up to see THIS!
The next morning we woke up at dawn to see an amazing sunrise. I would have slept longer but my owner wanted to take pictures. We went for a walk from the Overlook Park next to Friday Harbor House. They were having breakfast overlooking Friday Harbor and the marina (no one invited me in for a luxury breakfast, unfortunately).  We went past the Whale Museum and checked out the beautiful fall leaves at the Court House.
I liked walking under these trees on the old Courthouse lawn.
We returned for breakfast and planned a day going to Roche Harbor to see the sights. I heard they had a dog park there and I needed to check it out, of course. We drove all the way (25 min.) to Roche Harbor passing a winery, huge cows in their pastures and even a camel (yes, really). Finally we got to Roche Harbor and drove to the marina and historic resort. We walked the docks. I sniffed around and tried to board a couple of yachts but I was on my leash so didn’t quite make it.
Here I am sniffing around the docks at Roche Harbor.
I also checked out the huge yachts.
We walked past the old Lime Kilns, through the formal gardens and along the water. It was a glorious sunny day. I loved Roche Harbor.  I hear it is dog friendly so I think I’d like to go stay there sometime. They had my kind of yachts there, big enough to run around on.
You can tell why I want to have a vacation here next time.
Isn't Roche Harbor amazing? And they have plenty of places for dogs to walk.
And, in the summer, the restaurant has a deck where dogs are allowed!
Then I saw a sign, “To the Dog Park!” So of course we had to follow the sign up the hill. And then I went into the dog park. It was surrounded by woods and had beautiful green grass. There weren’t any other dogs there so I just relaxed and sniffed around. My owner sat on a bench in the sun and let me have free time. I loved that park!
This sign led me to the Dog Park.
We passed the historic Hotel De Haro and
the old Lime Kilns.

Soon it was time to leave and go to our next stop… the San Juan Islands Sculpture Park. I wasn’t too into art but I soon realized this was a very special place. They welcome dogs and, in fact, dogs could be off leash if they are well-behaved. Well, I’m not all that reliable off-leash so I went with my owner to enjoy the sculptures, the trails and the nice people who couldn’t resist petting me. My favorite sculpture was a big green frog by the pond. I’ll be there were real frogs in the pond, too!
So much to see at the Sculpture Park. I loved
that it was dog friendly! The people were nice too. They petted me.

This was my favorite sculpture.
He was down by the pond. I even went wading in
the pond at the Sculpture Garden.
We really enjoyed our time there but we had one more important stop to make… the Pelindaba Lavender Farm. Why would you take a dog to a lavender farm? Well, this one is VERY dog friendly!

The lavender farm is organic, huge, and they make products with their own lavender. I heard they had some great dog products there! I wanted to go shopping. But first we walked out into the fields. The first thing I noticed was that I smelled the sweet smell of lavender even though the blooms were past their prime. I saw some huge metal sculptures by the artist Micajah Bienvenue  that looked like the ones I saw in Roche Harbor too.
You could walk on a trail in the Lavender fields
and check out the metal sculptures.
But then it was time to go to the Visitor Center and shop. We opened the door and I was hit with an even stronger smell of lavender. The lady inside said it was fine for me to come in… so I did. And I sniffed everything. I was starting to feel sleepy so we went outside to look at the displays and learn a bit about how they process the lavender. I spied a dog house so had to go over and take a look. That was where they displayed their dog products. Imagine! Luxury lavender products for dogs!
Here I am with my personal shopper
at the Pelindaba Lavender Shop. They were so nice to me!
Here she is showing me a dog pillow filled with lavender. I sniffed it (I sniffed everything!)
We went back inside to do our shopping and the nice lady showed me each and every dog product. And I found out they have a shop not so far from where I live. It’s in the Pearl District of Portland.
Here I am checking out the dog house.
It was filled with lavender products for dogs!
I was sleepy from all that lavender so it was time to head back to our luxury Penthouse, have dinner and then take a little walk along the docks before bedtime.  It had been a perfect day… sunshine, good smells, walking and shopping. What more could I ask for!

You never know what you will see when you walk the docks.
Here is a seal looking for a fishy hand-out.
Here I am falling asleep after all that lavender!
I went to sleep dreaming of my next luxury vacation… Roche Harbor! But I don’t think I’ll tell Francesca how wonderful my trip was or she’ll want to come too!

When You Go
Of course my advice is… take your dog!

Monday, October 3, 2016

Headed for Anacortes and San Juan Island - Dog-friendly Travel

Hey everybody. I'm all packed and ready to go. This morning when Francesca went to the Doggie Country Club I was really sad. Not that she was going, but that I was, somehow, missing out on something good.
Can I take my ball too?
But as soon as we got back home and packed my things, my mood brightened because then I realized I'M GOING ON A TRIP! I love trips. I am looking forward to walking along the marina in Anacortes and looking for a mural with a dog in it. They have a whole bunch of murals there!
This is only part of what I packed.
I also took our new toy and a nylabone.
And then there is the ferry ride tomorrow. I'm up for that! I have my float jacket and everything. I'm a salty dog, remember?

I'll be posting on Instagram and writing articles about my trip. So wish me well!

Love Cinnamon, the Travel Writer

Friday, September 30, 2016

Cinnamon Gets Ready for Her Dog Friendly Vacation to Anacortes and San Juan Island

Hi Everybody. It’s Cinnamon the vacay dog here! I’ve been getting ready for my exciting trip to Anacortes and San Juan Island. I started researching where I wanted to go and all of a sudden I found myself headed for the bathtub…. and a dratted bath! I make like I hate them but once in the tub the rubbing and scrubbing feels kinda nice. 


So once I was finished with that chore, I went outside to air dry and sit in the sun. Of course Francesca was very interested in what had happened to me. She got all excited and wanted to help me run and dry off. Then she smelled me and said, "Phew! You smell like flowery perfume!" At that point she started teasing me... "Nah, nah, na, nah, na... stinky Cinnamon!"


Well I put a stop to that when I reminded her that I was leaving HER at the Doggie Country Club while I, Cinnamon, took a luxury vacation. You know, walk along the marina in Anacortes, a ferry ride and a luxury suite in Friday Harbor as home base. Well, that shut her up. The rest of the afternoon was quiet and I got to sit in the sun and dry off. Francesca went to her hidey-hole in the corner of the yard and sulked.

Here I am basking in the sun after my bath when Francesca comes up to smell me.

When I get to Friday Harbor I'll be checking into my Penthouse at Island Inn 123 West. Yes, Penthouse! That's why I call this a luxury vacation. I'll be checking out yachts in Anacortes, cruising on a ferry and staying at a very special place. I might even do a little wine tasting and shopping for lavender products. I'll be posting photos on Instagram and telling you all about it here.

I'd better go pack. Should I take my lifejacket? (I have one, you know!)

More Information on Where Cinnamon is Going

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Ferry Dog Once More! Riding the Washington State Ferries

I just got the good news. I'm riding a Washington State Ferry in just about a week! I am so excited!

When I traveled in Haida Gwaii, I learned how to be a FerryDog. In order to get from the mainland to these remote islands, we had to take an overnight ferry. That meant I had to stay in the car and sleep during the crossing. Now I didn’t like it when the hull creaked, the horn sounded and the loudspeaker announcements were made, but I managed to just deal with it. 
Here's the huge overnight ferry I rode on
Here I am sleeping in the car. I got annoyed because of the sounds all night.
After the big ferry we had to take a little ferry too.
Why did I just deal with it? Well I loved Haida Gwaii. The beaches were full of seaweed, shells, crabs and leftover fish (the parts the eagles missed) and I could go wading. I loved my time there!

Here I am tidepooling in Haida Gwaii
So now, as we plan our luxury vacation in Anacortes and SanJuan Island, I’m involved in the planning. I asked to take a ferry where I could ride on the deck with my ears flying in the wind And Washington State Ferries allows that! Here’s their pet policy.

So we made a ferry reservation online to travel from Anacortes to Friday Harbor and back again.

We will stay in Anacortes, where they have some great places to walk, and take the ferry over the next morning. I’m looking forward to every bit of my luxury getaway. It’s been too long since I had a vacation without Francesca!

Love, Cinnamon

Saturday, September 17, 2016

About Feast Portland and a Starving Coon Hound

Here I am after opening a box of food.
I get two meals a day at home but add in lunch
at day care because I play so hard.
Hi, it's me, Francesca, the Coonhound. I'm writing today to tell you about yesterday. I didn't write last night because, frankly, I was too wiped out.

Yesterday started out great. I had breakfast and went to A Dog's Best Friend, my favorite Day Care. I go there once in awhile while my owner is away for the day. I run, play and have a nice lunch to sustain me through the day. So I was looking forward to playing.

Yesterday, lunchtime came and they didn't call my name. Whoa!!!! No lunch for Francesca? What was that all about. I hadn't a clue because I always get lunch at day care.

As the afternoon dragged on, I went up to the people that work there and let them know I WAS HUNGRY. I laid on their laps, made goo-goo eyes and even licked them on the face. And I still didn't get lunch. You see, not all the dogs want lunch there. So they didn't know.

By 4:30 I was about starved to death when my owner FINALLY SHOWED UP! I got a treat in the office and then jumped in the car. It was at that point that my owner and I spied MY LUNCH BAG in the back of the car. SHE HAD FORGOTTEN TO TAKE IT IN! I was so hungry I decided to let my owner know about it all the way home. I barked my loudest bark as soon as we left the parking lot. All the way down the street I barked and barked.
Am I dead? Starved to death?
You be the judge!

As soon as we got home, I ran to the dining room (I always eat just outside the dining room door. I didn't say hi to Cinnamon, I didn't run around the yard, I didn't pass go... I just got in position for DINNER!

I barked obnoxiously to urge my owner to hurry up and feed me. After all I was starving. Rather quickly I got my meal and enjoyed every morsel.

After dinner, I had a chat with my owner about her day. It was then that I found out what she had been doing AND IT MADE IT ALL WORSE!

She had been to Feast Portland events.... eating! Eating lots! First she went to the media breakfast at Gracie's at the Hotel de Luxe where they had pastries, French toast and sausage from Olympia Provisions.... she wasn't adventuresome enough to try the Octopus Benedict!
Here's what Octopus Benedict looks like. I would have been happy to have some.
The chefs at Gracie's know how to cook!
And after that she went to a luncheon sponsored by Washington Wines at Super Bite. Get this, it was a 15 course tasting lunch. Yes, 15 (that wasn't a typo). She enjoyed such delights as Salmon and Albacore Cerviche and Whole Fried Trout topped with crab and BBQ Beef Shortrib.... all things I would love to share.
A dog would love just a bite of this Fried Whole Trout
From Super Bite.

I love seafood. Super Bite knows how to make it pretty!
And after all that, she didn't bring us a thing! She did this while I was STARVING!

So today, Saturday, Feast Portland continues. This afternoon she is going to Smoked! where they have all sorts of grilled meats and dishes cooked over an open fire. I'm making sure I have dinner before she leaves.

And, I have a plan. I am sending her there with two sandwich bags... one for me and one for Cinnamon. I am telling her to fill them with morsels of meat from the famous chefs that will be there. Those little doggie bags from Smoked! should at least partially make up for my day of hunger yesterday.

Love, Francesca

Thursday, September 15, 2016

#12Bravecto How to Choose the Right Tick Prevention for your Dog

Hi. It's me, Cinnamon. I'm back writing about BRAVECTO® (fluralaner) that Francesca and I take. I can't even remember what its like to have fleas or one of those blood-sucking ticks. Can you?

This post is sponsored by BRAVECTO® and the BlogPaws® Pet Influencer Network™. I am being compensated to help share information about BRAVECTO. But we only share information we feel is relevant to our readers. Neither Intervet Inc., nor Merck & Co Inc., are responsible for the content of this article and have not written, reviewed, or edited it in any fashion. For more information about BRAVECTO please click here.)

Well, if you can, it's time to make that appointment with your veterinarian to ask about a flea and tick control that will wipe those horrible pests out! Ticks are what you get when you are having fun running through the grass. Or, sometimes, you can get one just walking out in your backyard to go potty! I heard they literally suck your blood! And they sorta blow up like balloons. Ugh!
They caught this blood sucker just in the nick of time!

Dogs need tick protection, even those dogs that only go for a walk in the park! Protect your dog and yourself. Ticks can carry diseases that can be harmful to you and your pet. See what kind of ticks are in your area and what diseases your dog might be exposed to by going to this website and selecting your state.

Now the fact is, ticks are really small. You can't see them easily until they "balloon up." So you owners out there need to check your dog for ticks carefully. If you find one, here's how to remove it.

Talk to your veterinarian to discuss which product is best for your pet. One convenient option that provides extended duration is Bravecto® (fluralaner) a tasty oral chew, that lasts for up to 12 weeks*. Bravecto takes the worry out of tick protection so you and your pet can enjoy the outdoors.

If your dog is like me, running like the wind through the grasses is part of enjoying life. I don't want anyone to spoil my quality of life just because of a stupid little insect. When I was in Bend, Oregon, we went to this dog park with a huge grassy area. They let the grass grow until it was taller than me. I could think of nothing better than running and hopping through this grass. It was pure joy!
Here I am running like the wind!

If you and your veterinarian decide to switch to BRAVECTO® and you are a new user, signing up for My Pet Rewards can help you save money while protecting your dog from fleas and ticks. Register for savings here.

Remember, the sooner the better!
Here I am exploring the dog park in Bend... the one with
the tall grassy area. It was so fun!

* Disclaimer: BRAVECTO kills fleas, prevents flea infestations, and kills ticks (black legged tick, American dog tick, and brown dog tick) for 12 weeks. BRAVECTO also kills lone star ticks for 8 weeks.

Important Safety Information: The most common adverse reactions recorded in clinical trials were vomiting, decreased appetite, diarrhea, lethargy, polydipsia, and flatulence. BRAVECTO has not been shown to be effective for 12 weeks duration in puppies less than 6 months of age. BRAVECTO is not effective against lone star ticks beyond 8 weeks after dosing.

Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information published. However, it remains the responsibility of the readers to familiarize themselves with the product information contained on the USA product label or package. More product information is available here: