Dog Days of Summer – How To Stay Cool!

Pet Sitter - Dog Walker

It’s already July and I swear I think I can almost cook an egg on the sidewalk!

For those of us living in scorching hot locations, like myself – thank you Miami, making sure our fur balls stay COOL during walks is of utmost importance but sometimes it can be challenging. I mean when you live in a city that’s virtually an oven 90% of the time it kind of makes you want to stay home and buy your pup a Doggy Lawn so you never have to leave your house again! But we all know that’s not healthy for our kids so we have to make the best of it and find new and creative ways to beat the heat!

So what exactly can you do to stay cool during the summer months?

Avoid Walking During Peak Hours (11a-4p)

This is by far the most important piece of information! I don’t know if you’ve ever walked outside at about noon on a sunny day but it is HOT. And I don’t just mean hot and humid, I mean so hot it makes your skin itch and burn. Now if it’s this uncomfortable for you as a person, can you imagine how much more uncomfortable it must be for your dog? Dogs who already have a higher temperature than we do (101.5 vs 98.6) and loads of fur. It’s insane. It can seem virtually impossible to avoid walking your dog during the mid day hours especially if Fido’s routine is 3-4 walks a day (am, mid day, afternoon and pm or a similar schedule) but there are some ways to get around this situation.

You can always walk your pup twice in the morning, their first walk being when you first wake up, one just before mid day at about 10a or 11a,  their third walk just after 4/5p and then one just before bed. I know for some pups this might be hard especially if they can’t hold it for longer than 4-5 hours at a time in which case it’s ok to let them out during the mid day hours for a quick potty break, 10-15 mins so they can do their business and get right back inside. At TLS – Dog Walking & Pet Care we offer a service just like that which comes in handy for our brachycephalic breeds and is great for all our dogs so they don’t have to be out in the heat for so long.


Walk In The Shade | On Grass (Avoid Concrete) 

Walking in the shade is also a great way to stay cool. If you’ve beat the peak hours for hot temperatures and it’s still hot but not scorching, staying in the shade as well as walking on the grass is a bonus! It helps keep Fido cool, not to mention you don’t have to worry about their pads getting burned from walking on the hot pavement or about them overheating. I think the worst part about walking dogs during the summer is definitely the hot pavement. A lot of us pet owners don’t realize hot truly hot the ground can get but I myself have tested the pavement with my own two hands as well as feet and let me tell you… it’s hot. Just yesterday I saw a man walking from the beach barefoot… He didn’t have any shoes on and didn’t look like he had any on his person, which struck me as kind of odd, but you could clearly see that he was struggling as he made his way across the street to his car. He was literally speed walking and hoping around trying to make it to the grass to gain some relief. Granted our dogs have thicker pads/paws that we do but that can only help so much.

If you see your dog pacing back and forth and scratching/pawing at the ground, that’s a tell-tale sign that the ground is hot and they probably shouldn’t be standing in or around that area.

Drink Lots of Water!

Aside from avoiding peak hours, walking in the shade and/or on the grass it’s just as important that your pup stay hydrated. I usually carry a portable water bowl with me when I walk my dog but in the event that I forget to bring oneI  like to stop in at the local dog park so she can get a drink OR stop by one of the many water bowls around the area. Some local shops that are pet friendly always have full water bowls available for furry friends.

So what are you and your pup doing to stay cool this summer?

Leave your tips and comments down below, I’d love to hear them!



How To Keep Your Dog Entertained (Kong/Chew Toys)

How to keep your dog entertained

If you’re like me and happen to have a hyperactive dog, who no matter what you do ALWAYS has an endless supply of energy, then you’re constantly on the lookout for new and creative ways to engage and keep them from harassing you throughout the day! We all long for that peace and quite but can’t really get that let alone enjoy it when we have our dog(s) throwing their toys into our laps wanting to play fetch every 2.5 seconds (this is Zoey’s signature move whenever she wants to play).

One of my favorite things to do (and I do this with my dog and also my clients dogs) is to use some sort of chew toy. Chew toys are great interactive toys that you can fill up with food to keep their minds and bodies busy! Now the trick about chew toys is strategically placing the food inside the toy to make it challenging, but not impossible, to get at. If you just place treats and food inside where it only takes your dog a few minutes to retrieve then you’re not really giving your dog a good workout. You want your dog to problem solve and take time to dig out whatever goodies are in their chew toy.


Kongs are my go-to chew toys to use whenever I have a dog who needs to stay busy. They’re super durable (and also have extra tough chews if you have an avid chewer), come in a variety of sizes/colors and you can stuff them with virtually anything. When I use kongs I like to incorporate peanut butter (Kong sells a dog friendly peanut butter as well as cheese filling), treats and/or their food. Another combination I like to use is one that includes frozen yogurt, fruits and vegetables (usually something crunchy). With both of these concoctions I like to freeze the kongs, this makes everything stick together nicely and it also adds a level of difficulty. I usually freeze the kongs overnight to ensure it’s as frozen as possible but I think leaving it in the freezer for a good 5-6 hours would be fine. When I give my dogs the kongs they usually take a good 2-3 hours to get most if not all of what’s inside and that’s using my most avid chewer as an example.

Chew Bones

Another method I like to use which is very similar to the Kong method is using chew bones. These kinds of bones are the ones that come filled with bone marrow or some other sort of filling in the center that your dog can work out or you can find ones that are already empty that you can fill yourself. I use either one. If I buy one that comes pre-filled then I can hand it off to my dog and once she’s done with it I’ll refill myself. These types of bones aren’t as spacious as the Kong chews are so you don’t have very much space to work with so what I like to do is fit soft treats inside and push it as far down as I can making it more difficult to get out. If I want to make the chew more interesting then I’ll add some peanut butter along with the soft treats and then freeze that. These types of chews don’t last as long as the kongs, again because there isn’t a whole lot to dig out but they will keep your dog engaged and off your back!

Some of the kids keeping busy:

Barclay Barclay with his chew bone 

2015-01-27Ping Pong with his Kong


Best Dog Parks in Miami Beach


If you’re a SoBe (that’s South Beach for those of you non-locals) local then you know the beach has a number of fantastic dog parks tucked in and around the area. Some of these parks have been around for years while others are relatively new but still pretty awesome! If you’re a local or just someone visiting the area for a time and you’re looking for some great dog parks to take your furry friend to then check out our top picks for Bark Parks!

South Pointe Park (Off-Leash)

This Bark Park is one of the few parks in the area that is off-leash and most if not all locals love this place! It’s conveniently located right next to the water, which is a huge plus if you have a water dog that enjoys going for a swim, and connects with a lengthly boardwalk that stretches all the way to the beach in one direction (the one with sand and water) and the marina in the other. So not only do you and your pup get to enjoy an hour or two at the park but once you’re done you can take a stroll on the boardwalk and check out all the boats, restaurants and say hi to all the passersby. This is a beautiful park with tons of beautiful stops along the way, great for taking selfies!

Washington Avenue Bark Park

There are actually two dog parks located in this one area but my favorite is the one located on the North East corner of Washington Ave. This park features a double gated entrance which allows pet parents to unleash their pups before letting them run in to play, a large fenced in area, benches, garbage disposal and poop bag stations as well as my personal favorite: a water fountain. This huge fountain kind of reminds me of the fountains seen at disney world. Where the rise up from the ground and create pictures as they flow up. These ones don’t create and pictures but the dogs absolutely love them! It’s a great way for them to stay hydrated as well as cool off on the hot summer days.


Flamingo Bark Park

Another personal favorite, Flamingo Bark Park features a double gated entrance, poop bag dispensers/garbage disposal and water fountains (although not as glamorous as the one previously mentioned) and also two enclosed areas: one for large dogs and the other for smaller dogs. Both areas are fairly large with enough space for all dogs to run around and play for hours! There are also a number of benches and trees for providing much needed shade. This park is also one of many other amenities this park area offers. There are also tennis courts, basketball courts, a soccer/baseball field, a tennis center, a kids playground and large sections of grass where locals enjoy laying out and hanging with friends and/or pups!

There are a number of parks located in the Miami Beach area as well as our very own dog beach but these happen to be our personal favorites here at The Litter Sitter – Dog Walking & Pet Care and where we enjoy taking our clients’ furry friends to run around at. If you’d love to take your pup to one of these amazing parks but just don’t have the time our dog walkers would love to take your pup for you!

Favorite Pet Podcasts 2014!

Favorite Pet Podcasts 2014

So I think it’s safe to say that 2014 was and still continues to be the year of PODCASTS, at least for me it is! For those of you who aren’t familiar with podcasts they’re basically internet radio where you can choose from a variety of topics to listen to. For example, if you’re a fan of technology you can search technology podcasts in the iTunes search bar (or other podcast players like Stictcher, Pocket Casts, etc) and you’ll find a ton of podcasts out there that talk all about technology! It’s pretty awesome. You can either download these episodes, most podcasts are weekly episodes anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour long on average but every podcast varies, or stream them and basically listen to them anytime you want from any device!

I have over 20 podcasts that I listen to some of my favorites, not pet related, being Serial, Freakonomics, Podcast Answerman and Preggie Pals! Of the 20 podcasts that I’m subscribed to I only listen to a handful religiously but when I’m in the mood for something specific I have a variety of topics to choose from. I usually listen to podcast episodes when I’m commuting to work, when I’m multi-tasking but more often than not when I’m walking or caring for clients pets. It keeps me entertained while walking for long periods of time and I’m learning something at the same time so it’s a win/win.

One of my go-to topics that I listen to on a weekly basis is of course my pet related podcasts and I have 3 favorites that I’ll be sharing with you guys today!

The Great Dog Adventure


This is by far my most favorite podcast. It’s hosted by Fernando Camacho who is a dog trainer out of New Jersey. His podcast focuses mainly on the dog training aspect being that he’s an expert in the field so he shares his insights on training, teaches his listeners tips and and tricks and all sorts of information is shared on a weekly basis. I personally enjoy his podcast because he isn’t your traditional dog trainer whose still stuck on the “alpha male, pack leader, dominant” method of training but uses positive reinforcement techniques instead which is more my speed. I’ve learned a great deal from listening to his podcast as I don’t specialize in training in the slightest but do have to frequently train clients’ dogs!

Quick and Dirty Tips – The Dog Trainer


My next favorite podcast is Quick and Dirty Tips – The Dog Trainer hosted by Jolanta Benal. These podcast episodes are much shorter than the average, most are between 30 minutes and a hour long, but for these episodes they’re about 10-15 minutes – bite sized! This podcast also features pet training in shorter episodes but also incorporates an array of other topics as well.

Joyful Telepathy Podcast


Last but not least the Joyful Telepathy Podcast! At first listen or when you first read the name of this podcast it doesn’t sound at all like something that would be related to animals but you would be wrong! This is podcast is hosted by Kate Sitka and she happens to be a Spirit Medium and Animal communicator. Prior to stumbling upon this podcast I’d never known that animal communicators existed! I’d heard and seen tv shows on spirit mediums but honestly was too confused by it to think anything of it but after binging (literally episode after episode while walking dogs) through her podcast and really getting to know what animal communication and spirit medium was I’ve completely changed my opinion on it all, It really is very interesting!


There are so, so, sooo many different types of podcasts to choose from it’s absolutely unbelievable and I can’t picture not listening to a podcast while commuting or walking. I basically don’t listen to the radio or music (unless I’m on a road trip for hours on end) but even then I’d rather be learning something interesting, which I have in different genres, and that honestly wouldn’t have been possible if I hadn’t found podcasts! The concept of podcasting is relatively new, it’s only been out for a number of years but it’s gained popularity within the last few years. I think most people, creators, are starting to catch on that this podcast thing is actually a thing (kinda like YouTube) and so now everyone is jumping on the band wagon, myself included!

I’ve been working on my very own podcast because blogging can be so tedious at times! I’ll be launching Thee Inside Poop Podcast here soon which will feature short 30 minute episodes on all things pet related! So if you’re interested in pet care, health, nutrition and everything in between then you’ll be able to listen in on my thoughts, tips and tricks and possibly even learn a few things here and there.

Do you have any favorite podcasts? If so, I want to hear about them! I’m always looking for new and exciting podcasts to listen to so if you have any worth mentioning leave them in the comments below 🙂

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