Thursday, November 27, 2014

How Did a Dog Become Man's Best Friend

Dogs are social animals that have high intelligence and have worked with humans for many years. They become a part of the family and we in turn become a part of the pack. Most people have heard the saying, "A dog is man's best friend" or something similar to that, but if you are like me you probably don't know how dogs got the title of "man's best friend".

The Case
The first time the saying "A man's best friend is his dog" can be found is the manuscript of an old trial about the killing of a black and tan hound named Old Drum. Charles Burden who was the owner of Old Drum was a farmer and a neighbor of Leonidas Hornsby who had lost some sheep on his property, from what he thought were attacks by local dogs. He swore to himself to kill any dogs he found on his property and when Old Drum wandered on his property he ordered a hired hand to shoot the dog.

Charles Burden went to court and sued Hornsby for damages but after several appeals in lower courts the case finally ended up in the Supreme Court of Missouri. During the trial which was held in September of 1870, George Vest, the lawyer for Burden gave a speech to the court, that some call his "Eulogy to the dog", that won the case. Some of Vest's speech was not preserved but the first portion was: what follows is the speech that gave rise to the saying, "A dog is man's best friend."

According to History Place,  George Vest, the lawyer for Old Drum's master said these words to the court, "Gentlemen of the Jury: The best friend a man has in this world may turn against him and become his enemy. His son or daughter that he has reared with loving care may prove ungrateful. Those who are nearest and dearest to us, those whom we trust with our happiness and our good name, may become traitors to their faith. The money that a man has he may lose. It flies away from him perhaps when he needs it most. A man's reputation may be sacrificed in a moment of ill-considered action. The people who are prone to fall on their knees to do us honor when success is with us, may be the first to throw the stones of malice when failure settles its cloud upon our heads. The one absolutely unselfish friend that a man can have in this selfish world, the one that never deserts him, the one that never proves ungrateful or treacherous, is his dog."

"Gentlemen of the jury, a man's dog stands by him in prosperity and in poverty, in health and in sickness. He will sleep on the cold ground where the wintry winds blow and the snow drives fierce, if only he may be near his master's side. He will kiss the hand that has no food to offer; he will lick the wounds and sores that come from encounter with the roughness of the world. He guards the sleep of his pauper master as if he were a prince. When all other friends desert, he remains. When riches take wing and reputation falls to pieces, he is as constant in his love as the sun in its journey through the heavens.

"If fortune drives the master forth an outcast in the world, friendless and homeless, the faithful dog asks no higher privilege than that of his company to guard against danger, to fight against his enemies. And when the last scene of all comes, and death takes the master in his embrace and his body is laid away in the cold ground, no matter if all other friends pursue their way, there by his graveside will the noble dog be found, his head between his paws, his eyes sad but open in alert watchfulness, faithful and true even in death."

The Outcome
At the end of the trial Burden won his case and was awarded fifty dollars. In 1958, years after the trial had ended, dog lovers throughout the U.S. pulled together and had a bronze statue of Old Drum erected in Warrensburg, Missouri, on the southeast corner of the current Johnson County Courthouse lawn. The bronze sculpture depicts a hunting dog standing on all fours with his head held high. On a plaque on the front of the statue there are the words that won Burden the case and is also the origin of that old saying most of us have heard from time to time, "A man's best friend is his dog."

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Gerber Graduates: A Healthy, Nutritious Snack for Rats

Rats enjoy many different treats and foods. They will eat just about anything that we eat but that's not always the best thing for them. Some treats are better than other and fatty foods can make them overweight which can lead to health problems.

I used to buy a lot of the rat treats found in places like PetSmart but they can sometimes be expensive and fatty which is not healthy or good for my budget. My new favorite place to find rat treats is in the baby food isle and the organic food section in the grocery store. In both sections you can find dried fruits and and healthy snacks for your pet rats.

Healthy Alternative Treats
Gerber Graduates Banana Cookies are made with real banana puree and banana flakes. My rats love these Banana Cookies as a treat.

Gerber Graduates Fruit and Veggie Melts are made with real fruit and vegetable purees and juices. I used to feed my four rats Yogurt drops from the pet store but they are very fattening and these Veggie Melts are half the price of the Yogurt Drops.

Gerber Graduates Lil Crunchies are made with whole grain corn flour and are a better alternative to things like Cheetos. Gerber Graduates Puffs are a great alternative to sugared dry cereal since they are flavored with fruit puree and fruit juice.

Not only are these alternative treats better for your pet rats, but they will save you money as well. I found some of these for as little as $1.69 which is cheaper than most of the rats treats you'll find in the pet stores.

How Many Treats Should I feed My Pet Rats
Treats should be given daily but should not be more than 10% of their daily diet because most treats are fattening. Giving healthier treats will make sure they don't become overweight and stay as healthy as possible. Small amounts of Fresh fruits and vegetables should also be given to your pet rats daily. But remember to remove any uneaten fresh foods from their cage at night to prevent spoiled foods from being eaten by your rats.

While there are many sources for treats for your rats, in my opinion Gerber Graduates have clearly been made for rats, because on the back of the package it says, "Perfect food for little fingers" and rats do have some of the tiniest fingers you'll ever see.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Unusual Rat Behavior: Barbering


For those of you without pet rats, you might not know that rats clean themselves a lot. For the most part they keep themselves so clean that we don't need to give them a bath at all, unless they get into something toxic, smelly or sticky. At that point a ratty bath may be necessary. But rats will also clean themselves so much that they start pulling out their fur or in some cases, they nibble off their cage-mates fur.

What is Barbering?
Barbering refers to the excessive and compulsive cleaning in which the fur is actually nibbled off or pulled right out of the skin. Rats in a cage with a cage-mate may barber each other leaving bald spots on the other rats fur.

What Causes A rat To Barber?
There are many reasons a rat may barber himself or a cage-mate. The most common are because of mites, ticks, fleas or lice. These tiny insect may be hard for a human to see on a rat but they can itch your rat's skin and make him chew the fur off to get rid of the itching.

Baby rats may barber their mother's stomachs when their teeth come in and some lactating mother rats may barber their own stomachs if there is any irritating around the nursing sites.

Other reason might be because of skin ulcers, lesions, small cuts or abrasions. Rats will sometimes over groom any small cuts they get on their skin, leading to barbering. A rat might also barber when they are stressed, annoyed, or lonely.

How To Stop a Rat From Barbering
Most times when you see rats grooming each other, they are not barbering. They are just grooming each other and it might even look like one is combing the fur of the other with their teeth while nibbling them at the same time.

If barbering is apparent and bald spots start occurring, check for mites, fleas or lice. They are sometimes hard to see but a trained veterinarian will be able to tell you if that's the problem.

Put more toys in the cage, take the rats out and play with them more often. Rats are very social animals, being lonely or bored may cause them to barber themselves or their cage mate. Buy a bigger cage. A larger cage and more toys will give them something to do and things to explore.

But in some cases there's not much you can do if the rats are barbering for other mental reasons. In the end it won't hurt the rat being barbered or the rat doing the barbering, but you might end up with rats who have no fur on their face, head or legs.

Monday, November 24, 2014

Happy Raturday!

Welcome to a new weekly blog post I'm calling, Raturday! I've seen Caturday and while that's really cute, I think the rats needs some photo time so everyone can see how cute these little animals are. I've gotten permission from Rat Logic's fb page to share their pictures on my blog. So get ready to smile because these are cute. 

*click pictures to enlarge*

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Review: SterlingPro 6 Cup French Coffee Press

Product Description:

Brews 0.85 liter, 28 oz. of the best tasting coffee.Carafe is made of durable, heat-resistant borosilicate glass.
The first and only coffee press use Double Screens System---No more GROUNDS in your coffee.
The only Stylish Christmas Red color Coffee Press in Amazon. ---Great as Wedding, House Warming, Retirement, Christmas & Birthday Gifts for Coffee Lovers
1 pieces BONUS stainless steel screens(over $12 value)---FREE!--Limited Quantity!

My Thoughts: 

This is my very first French Press and I love it. 

I usually drink instant coffee and so does my hubby but I had 5 bags of ground coffee just sitting in my cabinet waiting for me to use it so I decided to give this French Press a go. I don't drink ground brewed coffee because I think it's bitter unlike instant which is not. But making coffee using this coffee press I found that the coffee isn't bitter at all. 

It's much bigger than I had thought it would be and I love that since hubby and I drink our fair share of coffee during the day. I think it's also great for when company comes over because it's large enough to make coffee for several people. 

I found this French Press very easy to work and figure out, it's not at all complicated even for someone who has never used one. I know you're supposed to use coarse ground coffee with this so that that little grit and smaller grounds of coffee don't slip through the filters but I used the regular bagged coffee that I had in my cabinet and it worked perfectly fine, no grounds in my coffee at all. 

I am extremely happy with my French Press and will definitely be using it a lot. There are only a few parts to take apart when cleaning and that made this really easy to clean and put back together. I love the red color of it and have had several compliments on it already. This will come in real handy for the upcoming holidays. 

If you would like to purchase one of these for yourself, you can find it on Amazon

Disclaimer: I received this product for free in exchange for an honest review. 

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Review: Mary Kay Clear Proof Acne System

I was sent this Clear Proof Acne System from Influenster to test at home for free. I began using it right away. It's a 4 step system that contains a clarifying gel, blemish control toner, acne treatment gel and an oil free moisturizer for acne prone skin. The active ingredient is Salicylic acid. 

I've tried over the counter Salicylic acid so I knew my skin wouldn't break out into a rash from using this and it's gentle enough to use each day. I have mild acne and it comes and goes but it's mostly on my chin, probably because I lean my hands on my face while at the computer. 

I did find that if I didn't use all 4 steps that it left my face feeling dry and tight. I highly recommend using the moisturizer each time to help with that. I've always had a hard time keeping my face especially my forehead oil free without using astringent several times a day and drying out my face. I used this system once a day and saw a great improvement in my skin being less oily, less shiny. 

I started seeing an improvement in about a week. It really didn't take long at all for the breakouts to start diminishing and go away completely. 

This is my before and after pictures taken just a week apart after starting to use the Clear Proof Acne System. I have a few blemishes on my chin and that's where I usually get them but they cleared up after using this system. 

Friday, November 21, 2014

Freebie Friday!

Welcome to another edition of Freebie Friday, where I tell you what free samples and full sized products I received in the mail and how you can get them too. Someone asked me why I do a 'Freebie Friday" each week, so I'll tell you.

A while back I listed all the free samples and wins that I had received that previous year and so many people didn't believe that I could have gotten so many free things. So I decided to prove it by taking a picture every week and sharing the sites that I found the links to the freebies at. So now you too can get great free samples coming to your mailbox each week.

  You can find links to samples like these at Hey It's Free and Freebie Shark.

This week I received:

A book: A Death In Vegas by Christopher Meeks
Sample of Truly Radiant Tooth Paste
Fructis Hair Oil
2 samples of Ovaltine
A coupon for a free 1/2 gallon of Silk
A pair of ear buds from a FB friend because some of us participated in a "Pay it Forward" gifting. We posted that the first 5 people to respond to that post would get a gift from us at some point during the year. I was one of the first 5 to respond to his post. I've now sent out 4 of my 5 gifts to those who responded to my post. I thought it was a great idea to Pay It Forward. 

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Review: Vizeri Beauty Boar Bristle Hair Brush

I bought this brush when the company released a code that made the price of the brush just $1. I thought, wow, that's too good a deal to pass up and I was right. This is good for me because I have long hair and the dainty small brushes I usually buy aren't really working for my hair. But I can see this brush working for just about any type of hair since it's made so well and the spacing between the bristles are a good size. I even used it on my hair after I curled the ends and it just glided right through. 

I almost never brush or comb my hair when its wet because it's so long and ends up breaking or snapping off before I get to the end. I tested this brush out on my wet hair just to see if it would work and for the most part it did a good job but i don't think this brush would work on really detangled wet hair. I made sure to brush my hair before I washed it and used a leave in conditioner to make it easier to brush and it still pulled my hair in a few places. 

What makes this brush unique is that it's curved unlike the usual flat brushes this one fits the roundness of your head. The other thing I really like is that the little bristles really do feel like a small scalp massage when you are brushing your hair. The bristles are nice and soft and don't scrape my scalp like some of the other brushes I've used. I would definitely recommend this brush.

If you'd like to order this brush you can do so on Amazon

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Review: Xtava Spiral Hair Curler

Product Description:
Professional constant temperature curling Iron - fast heat up to 400°F
Spiral Curl Guides designed to effortlessly align your hair onto the Curling Barrel - Will not leave creases in curls
Simply clip the end of each hair mesh and twist
360° Swivel Power Cord with "On" indicator light
Ceramic Technology reduces static and frizz for healthy-looking hair

My Thoughts:

I have very long hair, it's so long that I can sit on it right now. I have incredibly straight hair so curling can take quite a while to get done. I usually roll my hair into small foam curlers at night when it's wet and sleep in them. By morning time when my hair is dry, I have curls. It can be a pain to sleep with curlers in your hair, even the soft foam ones so when I got a chance to try this curling iron out I was excited to try this out.

The curling iron came in a really nice black box for easy storage. It heats up really fast and has a little plastic guard at the end so if you touch it, your fingers don't get burned. I really liked that about it. it's different from other curling irons that I've used and it does take a little practice to get used to it but after a few tries I found it easy to use. 

This curling iron works really good. My daughter even wants to borrow it from me now. I have really long hair and could only get part of my hair into the curling part of it and so only the bottom part of my hair really got curled. I think this is better for someone who has shoulder length or medium length hair, not longer hair like I have.  If you'd like to buy one for yourself, you can find it here.

I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Review: Power Tek Flash Premium CREE LED Headlamp

Product Description:

168 Lumens of Darkness Busting Power for Up To 110 meters of Visibility - MUCH BRIGHTER THAN THE #1 HEADLAMP ON AMAZON!
Up To 120 Hours of Battery Life on 3 AAA Batteries - Efficient Enough for Weeks of Use
Superbright CREE XP-E LED Lasts a Lifetime - Never Worry About it "Burning Out" - 6 Different Lighting Modes Including SOS and Red Night Vision Modes
Adjustable Super Comfortable Headband Allows Extended Use Without "Brain Squeeze"

My Thoughts: 

This headlamp is bright! I put the 3 AAA batteries in the headlamp and turned it on and made the mistake of having it pointed right at my face and I have to say that this is the brightest headlamp I've ever had. My husband who is an apartment maintenance man was also quite impressed with the brightness of the light and very pleased when I let him know that I was going to let him have the headlamp. 

I really love that it has a blinking SOS function where the light will blink in an SOS formation and it also has red lights for easy use at night. The headband easily adjusts to fit your head and doesn't give you a headache like some headbands will when you wear them for more than a few minutes. 

I really love this headlamp and recommend it highly. My husband also recommends this headlamp and he's had several over the years that he's used during his many years as a maintenance man and he said that this is the brightest one he's ever had. 

It's well made, very sturdy and seems like it will last a long time. If you would like to get one for yourself you can find it here.

I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.