Canadian followers: Bowzer Box is GOLDEN! – Product Review

Last week we received our second Bowzer Box. The theme was Victoria Day, the first long weekend of summer here in Canada.  It is a monthly subscription of products from North America (at least ONE Canadian product/month) for as little as $23/month.  You choose your dog size and plan, and presto!  Each month your dog receives a delivery of great stuff!

I subscribed to three months of Bowzer Box and received the first box in April. That box review will follow as I have been horribly lame at blogging (sorry! Thanks for standing by!)

Here’s what was in the box this month:

1. Camo squirrel from R2P Pet and Mossy Oak.. I love this toy! It has lasted longer than most stuffed toys at the time of this post, which is about 4 hours after receiving said stuffie. What more can I say, except that Tucker seemed quite pleased as he pranced proudly around the house with it.


2. Treats Happen Beef Lung Dog Treats. Straight from Toronto Canada! Grain Free like Tucker, who absolutely LOVED them.


3. Lamb Berry treats from Northern Biscuit, another awesome Canadian company. They use wholesome grains. My dog never turns down a crunchy cookie!


4. Bark dental bar, with applewood flavour, also from Northern Biscuit.


5. Biodegradable poop bags from One4Pets – because you can never have too many! These are pink with flowers! I love them, and I’m sure Tucker doesn’t mind!


Each Bowzer Box comes with a card explaining the monthly theme and products for the month.


What a great way to spoil your dog(s) and get a surprise every month! Bowzer Box always features at least one Canadian company, and always gives back.  10% of profits go to dogs in need.

SAVE 10% with code TDG when you order now.

Here is my video review if the box I received for May. (featuring Tucker!)

Don’t Be Deceived: English Cream Golden Retrievers

A male "English cream" Golden Retriever.

A male “English cream” Golden Retriever. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Golden retrievers come in a wide spectrum of colors. Sometimes they are bred as rare “English Cream” golden retrievers. This upsets me as much as when I hear the term “golden lab”. Each one is special in their own way, and fall under most breed club standards.

Here is a great article from The Golden Retriever Club of Canada that provides some great insight on the topic.

“English Cream Golden Retrievers”

In recent years there has been a sharp increase in internet marketing strategies aimed at specifically promoting cream-coloured Golden Retrievers. These light dogs are sometimes being presented to the general public as being exceptionally rare or extremely valuable and are often called ‘English Cream Golden Retrievers’ or ‘Rare White European Golden Retrievers’ or ‘Exquisite Platinum Imported Golden Retrievers’. Such cream Golden Retrievers are frequently being touted as being healthier, of having better temperament, of having stronger longevity and the implicit suggestion is that they therefore are more valuable than the more golden-coloured Golden Retrievers bred in North-America. Due to these common marketing ploys the average puppy buyer sometimes mistakes such light-coloured Golden Retrievers for being a separate breed. Nothing could be further from the truth. There is only one Golden Retriever breed, governed by the breed standard endorsed by various recognized Kennel Clubs around the world.

The Golden Retriever Club of Canada would like to emphasize to breeders and puppy-buyers alike that the cream colour has always been part of the full spectrum of colours found in our breed. We furthermore direct you to the following section of our Golden Retriever Club of Canada Illustrated Breed Standard (click here to view the GRCC Illustrated Breed Standard): “The acceptable range of colour in the Golden Retriever is broad. While a medium gold is always correct, coat colour can range from cream to a darker coppery gold. Any dogs within this range of colour should be considered equally, based on their merits, including balance, head type, movement and structure. “

The photo below furthermore illustrates the common shades of cream and gold found on this continent and all of these particular dogs are bred right here in North America. This broad range of colour is not only commonly found around the world, but both light and dark shades can also occur in the very same Golden Retriever litter, with full siblings varying in colour from very light cream to a rich gold.

Colour Back Line

Some breeders favor different styles of Golden Retrievers and some may even have a personal preference for a lighter or a darker golden, but good breeders never focus exclusively on a specific colour, since this would unnecessarily narrow the gene-pool and may cause genetic predispositions towards hereditary health issues to become magnified over time. Furthermore, the various styles have nothing to do with colour, but rather reflect the individual breeders’ aesthetic preferences and their interpretations of the breed-standard. Good Golden Retrievers of differing styles should, however, all possess strong breed-type. They should be readily recognized as Golden Retrievers, whether they are a rich gold or a pale cream.

The Golden Retriever breed originates from Scotland, which is a part of Great Britain. All Golden Retrievers across the world are descended from this original Scottish stock. To call the current light ones ‘English Cream Golden Retrievers’ is incorrect terminology, and in fact the majority of these dogs do not even come from England, but are bred right here in North America or are descended from dogs that have been imported from various European countries, Scandinavia, New Zealand and Australia. You can also find very dark coloured Golden Retrievers overseas, just as you can find very pale cream North American bred Goldens.

The cream colour of a Golden Retriever might be considered very attractive to some puppy-buyers, but this colour does not signify that such a light puppy is particularly superior or that it is necessarily well-bred, or that it should ever be referred to as an ‘English Cream Golden Retriever’. It is our position that a breeding program which focuses mainly on colour should be viewed with some skepticism. If claims are being made that the light creams are more valuable or healthier than darker coloured Golden Retrievers, then the buyer should be aware that such statements are blatantly incorrect.

We instead urge all new puppy owners to carefully review all recommended health clearances and ask the appropriate questions about longevity in the pedigree of any puppy. It is never the colour of a Golden Retriever that determines its temperament and working-ability or its health and potential longevity. Instead the quality of a Golden Retriever will be determined by the care the individual breeder has taken, by adhering to the standard when breeding, as well as by doing careful pedigree research and screening for soundness in mind and body.

*The above article was posted with permission from The Golden Retriever Club of Canada

Please share your constructive thoughts in the comments below.  In my opinion, they are all equally wonderful.

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It’s National Puppy Day – Here are some Golden Retriever Puppies!

Today is National Puppy Day!  It was founded by Colleen Paige in 2006.  I believe it is now International Puppy Day, due to the fact that social media makes this world a much smaller place.  I am celebrating from Canada.

National Puppy Day is a special day to celebrate the magic and unconditional love that puppies bring to our lives. But more importantly, it’s a day to help save orphaned puppies across the globe and educate the public about the horrors of puppy mills, as well as further our mission for a nation of puppy-free pet stores.” –

Here are 10 photos of golden retriever puppies from some of my Instagram friends.

I'm allergic to mornings 😴

A post shared by Sumo (@sumothegolden) on

Wishing for summer ☀️ #tbt

A post shared by Bruno (@brunothegolden) on

Ruff's up! This is my second day home at 8 weeks old. I slept a whole lot that day.

A post shared by Whiskey (@whiskey_me_away) on

Sleeping 😴

A post shared by @ hongtaethegolden on

I know I’m a little late in the day with this post, but for next year,

50 Ways To Celebrate National Puppy Day –

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The Tucker Files: Doing Better

We finally had a nice day here in Southern Ontario.  We took Tucker for a hike and a quick swim, since it has been over 10 days since “The Surgery”.

Here are some pictures from our trip:

running down the trail with gusto! (slightly out of focus, I’m working on this!)


Swimming in the river:


Checking out the scenery..(again, slightly out of foucus)


The car ride…


And now all brushed and checked for ticks, resting with his best buddie…a great (almost) summer day!


Good night everyone!!  Thank goodness summer is almost here!

Golden Retriever To Compete In Obedience World Cup

Bruce Gibbons and his golden retriever GMOTCh Rideauview’s Bright Horizons “Bright” will be competing next month in the 2013 Crufts World Cup Obedience competition.

Teams competing in this years event are from Wales, England, N.Ireland and Scotland, Belgium, Germany, Holland and Canada.  This makes Bruce and Bright the farthest traveling team!

Bruce has been involved in the world of dog sports for over 25 years.  He is a breeder of golden retrievers (Rideauview Goldens Reg’d)  and has his own training facility “Top Ten Dog Obedience”   He is also a CKC/AKC  Obedience Trial Judge.  Bruce and his wife Lillian have a beautiful home on the Rideau River in Eastern Ontario.

Bruce says he has had other dogs that have won more High In Trials and have achieved more perfect scores than Bright, but none have the work ethic and desire to please that Bright  does.  Here are some of the accomplishments of his dogs to date:

  • 1995 Top Obedience Dog (Rebel)
  • 2001 Top Obedience Dog (Austin)
  • 11 times in the CKC Top Ten All Breed
  • 6 years Top Golden & Top Sporting Dog
  • Winner of 370 HITS (High in Trials)
  • Member of the 2013 Canadian World Cup Team to compete at Crufts 
  • 22 perfect 200 scores 
  • Winner of the GRCC National Specialty 5 times 
  • Winner of the Royal Canin Challenge in the Utility Class in 2011 with Bright
  • Canine specialty consultant


This is a pretty big deal in the golden retriever world.  I was fortunate enough to have an email interview with Bruce, and here is what he says about his journey to Crufts:

TDG:  How much time do you and Bright spend training each week?

Bruce:  For Crufts I have been training about 2-3 hours a day for the last 6 months.  If I am Trialing I dont train that day of course.

TDG:  Is there anything special you are doing to prepare for this event?

Bruce:  I have watched hundereds of hours of Crufts Video on YouTube which has been a great help.  As well I had the opportunity to talk with Bridgett Carlson from the US who has competed at Crufts.

TDG:  Do you use bait as a training tool?  and if so, do you have a favorite?

Bruce:  No I don’t use bait, my reward is my praise and affection.

TDG:  Is there an age that is too old to start training for obedience trials?  (of the dog, of course!)

Bruce:  No it;s never too late but the later you start the more challenging it is.

TDG:  Are there any particular traits you see in a dog that makes you think they have what it takes to participate in obedience?  For example, what do you look for in the dog you will compete with?

Bruce:  I want the craziest pup in the litter that is more interested in me rather than other pups.

TDG:  How much does it cost to train and compete in Obedience?  Can you give me a ballpark?

Bruce:  Well, it’s difficult to pot a cost on the training if you work with a top trainer like myself is quite expensive but you get what you pay for.  Competing would be similar to golf.  You can spend $300 – $500 in a weekend depending how far you have to travel.

TDG:  As a dog breeder, what has been your biggest accomplishment?

Bruce:  For sure it would be Bright earning his GMOTCH (Grand Master Obedience Trial Championship) and then being invited to compete at Crufts.

TDG:  What do you feed your dogs?

Bruce:  Eukanuba Large Breed

TDG:  What is Bright’s favorite toy?

Bruce:  He loves all toys but is insane over field bumpers.

TDG:  Where does Bright sleep at night?

Bruce:  Where else, in our bedroom!

Here is an article from Dog Sport Mag about the competition. (featuring Bruce and Bright)

Crufts 2013 – Obedience World Cup musings

If you would like to contribute to Bruce and Bright’s journey to Crufts click here.

You can also check out their  Facebook page here.

Best of luck to Bruce and Bright!

Here is some footage of last years World Cup Obedience at Crufts

Happy Thanksgiving fellow Canadians

Don’t try this at home!

Supermodel’s Golden Retriever dies on US Flight

Maggie Rizer is a supermodel who has appeared on the cover of Vouge, and worked for Louis Vuitton, Vercace and Gap, to name a few.  The 34 year old model has a blog about her life, including her three golden retrievers entitled Bea Makes Three  I just went and checked it out..and now I am following.  Such a beautiful blog!

On a recent flight from the East Coast to San Francisco on United Airlines, her 2 year old golden, Bea, did not survive the flight.  Bea was a special dog, destined for greatness.  Her life was cut short due to unexplained circumstances aboard that flight.  Here is a link to Rizer’s tragic story. United Airlines Killed Our Golden Retriever

The airline is claiming no responsibility for the death, and has handled the matter with cold, corporate wording.

United Airlines said in a statement to People:

“We understand that the loss of a beloved pet is difficult and express our condolences to Ms. Rizer and her family for their loss. After careful review, we found there were no mechanical operational issues with Bea’s flight and also determined she was in a temperature-controlled environment for her entire journey. We would like [to] finalize the review but are unable until we receive a copy of the necropsy.”

My own two cents…Romney’s dog survived a trip to Canada strapped on top of the family car, makes you wonder how a young healthy golden could meet her demise on a routine flight.