Dogs Get Skin Cancer Too

Dogs Get Skin Cancer Too

Although I’ve been a dog owner my whole life, it’s never occurred to me that my dogs needed protection from the sun.  If it’s never occurred to you either – dogs get skin cancer too.  I recently learned this first-hand, and now I want other dog owners to be aware.

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My Vizsla Lucy loves to sunbathe, and a few weeks ago I noticed some odd spots on her abdomen.  At first they looked like tiny bruises, but over time transformed to look  more like moles (but bloody in color).  My vet recommended that we remove them, so we scheduled surgery and had the spots sent off for testing.  When they called with the lab results, I was told that Lucy’s tumors tested positive for skin hemangiosarcoma.  I was glad to know that removing the spots was action enough to remove the cancerous cells, but now I have to protect her from the sun to prevent more spots… and now my little redhead is wearing doggy sunscreen (welcome to the club, Lucy).  Yes, you read that correctly, Dog Sunscreen is a thing.

If your dog “sunbathes” belly-up like my Lucy, you might consider getting some, as the tummy is particularly sensitive to excessive UV light.  The skin that’s most important to protect is anything light-colored – like a nose, ears, or the soft underbelly/inner thigh area.

Please note:  If you’re going to protect your dog with sunscreen, it’s important to know that you CANNOT use sunscreen made for humans.  Most of them contain zinc oxide, which is toxic to dogs.

dog sunscreenBarque is proud to now stock the only FDA compliant dog sunscreen formula.  It’s easy to apply, non-greasy and dries quickly, so even if your pet licks the applied area, it won’t harm them.  This sunscreen is also water and sweat resistant, which makes it great for beach or lake dogs.  Maufacturer’s instructions recommend that you apply the sunscreen every 2-4 hours if the pet is outside or is in the water for more than 80 minutes.  This sunblock is ideal for Boxers, Bull Dogs, Pit Bull Terriers, Bichons, Poodles, Schnauzers, Dobermans, Retrievers and any pups who like to sun belly-up.  Get yours today in-store or on our website.

{You can see this product featured on the TODAY show here.}

 

 

Fiesta Floral Invitation: Behind the Scenes

Fiesta Floral Invitation: Behind the Scenes

We create a LOT of custom invitations, but this spring I designed one of my favorites thus far – a festive Mexican floral with stripes.  In my head, I envisioned the flowers on a Mexican embroidered shirt – so that’s where I started for inspiration.  As you can see in the screenshot below, I found several photos of Mexican embroidered shirts for ideas.  Then I created a few flowers to start playing around with.  Slowly, with lots of moving and rearranging, the floral design started to come together.  The final part of the process is where it REALLY starts to firm up – selecting the final colors for the design.

fiesta floral screenshot

I love how this invitation turned out – it’s fun and cheerful and makes me all kinds of happy!

(And for those of you who have wondered “how it’s done”, now you know. )

Patriotic Lockers

Patriotic Lockers

Just before Memorial Day, we gave our lockers a little Red, White and Blue treatment.  All of the fun paper fans, tissue tassel garland and strings of stars really make a fun backdrop, don’t they?  You could re-create this look behind a bar cart or dessert bar for your next holiday weekend get-together and it would be a BIG hit!

party-fans{paper fan kit $24.99, red/white/blue tissue tassel garland $21.99, glittery red stars $11.99, hey y’all gold foil print 22.99$, flag pillow $49.99, ‘merica pillow $32.99 – call the store for availability or to order over the phone:  806-785-1195}

Garden Floral Arrangement How To

Garden Floral Arrangement How To

For Shannon’s garden-themed bridal shower, the floral arrangements were one of my favorite details, so I thought I would share a few tips for creating your own.

To start, you’ll want plenty of fresh flowers in the color scheme of your choice.  I got these beauties from Box of Rain – a fun mix of roses, lilies, hydrangeas and greenery.

IMG_0585You’ll also need some gorgeous root vegetables for color like these – carrots, turnips, radishes, artichokes, asparagus, brussels sprouts, etc. – whatever looks beautiful at your grocery will be stunning in this arrangement. You can also throw in a few different types of greens like kale, Swiss chard or collard greens – a variety of textures will really look nice.

You’ll also need wooden kabab sticks and a good pair of heavy duty scissors to cut them to your desired length.

First, wash and dry all of the veggies.

IMG_0580You’ll also need a pre-made Oasis “caged foam base” from your local florist or craft store.  I cut a hole in the bottom of the plastic on mine so I could insert the carrots from below and leave room for the flowers on top.  Before you get started arranging, be sure to soak the Oasis foam until it’s nice and absorbed.

Start by gathering the carrots by their stems and tying them about 1-2 inches above the tops with either twine or wire.  You want it to be tight so you can trip off the ends of the stems and they will still stay bundled together.  Place the carrot bundle in your desired glass vase and fill with water.  From the top, insert a wooden skewer into the carrot bundle.  You want it to stick up a little so that you can secure it in the foam.

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After cutting a hole in the oasis cage, you should be able to set it on top of the carrot bundle/skewer.

IMG_0581I secured mine in place with a little duct tape (only because I was out of floral tape), but don’t worry – you won’t be able to see it once the arrangement is complete.

Start with the larger flowers cutting their stems on the diagonal as you insert them into the Oasis foam, then slowly go back and fill in the vegetables, using the sharp end of the skewer to pierce the “base” of the vegetable and cutting the length of the skewer to fit as needed.  Keep adding flowers, vegetables and greenery – regularly turning the arrangement so you can make sure it’s even all the way around.  (Don’t forget to add a little more water once you’re done – you don’t want those flowers to wilt!)

IMG_0584When you’re finished, you’ll have this fun and unique floral arrangement that’s perfect for showers, garden parties, an elegant summer dinner or Easter lunch!

For more photos of arrangements like this, see the full post about Shannon’s Shower here.