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Grandbury’s Nose – Day 3 of Snout Soothing

Check out Grandbury’s nose after just three days of using Snout Soother! Looking pretty good, eh?

Photo of Dog's Healing Nose


Let’s take a closer look at that nose

Dog nose after applying healing ointment

If you don’t remember where his poor nose started from, check out the previous post.

Even the neighbor horse stopped to take note of the progress.

Horse in pasture


We’ll keep you posted, but so far, so very good. This is the quickest we’ve seen results like this with any product we’ve tried on his old dog nose. We apply three times a day, morning, afternoon, and night. A little goes a long way.

Some points we really love about Snout Soother by Natural Dog Company.

  • Virtually odorless – Grandbury doesn’t have a care in the world when we apply it to his nose.
  • Non-toxic and all natural – Love the all natural ingredients!
  • Vegan – While we are vegan and Grandbury isn’t, we love the fact that this is a compassionate product and are grateful that no other animal has to suffer for its creation.
  • Portable – The tin the Snout Soother is packaged in means that we can pop it in a bag and take it with us on the go, and you know that Grandbury definitely goes!

Snout Soother Tin

We are definitely seeing some great results, and we will keep you posted.


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Review: TerraCycle Natural Degreaser

Whether you are pulling out extra seating for holiday guests, putting away patio furniture for the season, or simply cleaning your dog’s crate, it wouldn’t hurt to arm yourself with a dependable cleanser that is kind to your senses and the environment.

We have two resin yard chairs that are about ten years old. They have lost the “shiny” protective layer that made the chair slick and easily maintainable. When the resin loses this layer, anything and everything sticks to it, and it no longer offers an inviting seat. The entire chair looked like the left half in the photo below.

A resin chair heavily stained on one side and clean on the other.

I’ve tried a number of cleansers on this chair. I’ve hauled it into the bathroom to let it “soak” in a bleach based cleanser, I’ve used two-part cleansers that apparently only pitted the chair and finished off any remaining protective coating that may have existed.

The future was bleak for my chairs. I was faced with sending them off to the recycling center (who, thankfully, will accept this plastic item), or purchasing a can(s) of spray paint. Additionally, I’d need to tarp a spray area, wait for a non-windy day (a rarity here), fight bugs that area always attracted to a freshly painted surface, repeat for multiple paint coats, and then find a recycler for my paint cans. Both options are a lot of work and neither choice really excited me. The chairs aren’t broken or in need of repair, so cleaning them up was the only solution for me. The degreaser was really the last shot at “cleaning.”

One beautiful summer day I headed outside with the degreaser spray (in my non-gloved hands) and scrubbed the chair with a once-coveted scrub brush by a much younger Tristan. I gave the chair a quick rinse with the garden hose, and I proudly present to you a CLEAN chair. Well, I jumped ahead of myself with this photo, as I later realized I forgot the back legs, but they were cleaned too, have no fear.

a clean resin chair after using TerraCycle Natural Degreaser

I didn’t have to tarp my yard or worry about run-off into the flower bed. This cleanser attacked the grime on my chair, not the living grass beneath it. No flowers or grass were harmed in the cleaning of this chair. Oh yeah, neither were the humans or non-human animals of the house or yard. Although this looks like a lot of scrubbing, the degreaser did most of the work, thus preventing me from tearing my rotator cuff for the fourth time.

I know, you are thinking, “That’s great Pack Mom, but you cleaned your chairs outside and now there is snow on the ground!”  Have no fear, you can simply wipe off the area you are cleaning with a damp cloth or sponge. You don’t need access to a hose. There aren’t any chemical odors that will make you leave your home for hours until it dissipates, so no excuses, no matter the weather, you can clean it. 🙂

I mentioned it earlier, but I highly recommend this product for degreasing your pet’s crates, carriers, and dog houses, whether they be plastic or metal. You may or may not have noticed that the inside of your dog’s crate can acquire a very unattractive and “greasy” surface that is discolored and smelly. This coating is created by your pet rubbing and lying against the surface of the crate. The natural oils from his coat transfer to the surface and begin to retain all odors and hair. This may, if left long enough, begin to discolor the surface. Establishing a regular cleaning routine of these items will help keep your pet healthy and your home free of any odd odors you can’t seem to locate.

A cleaning brushed with dog teeth marks.

Clean chair thanks to TerraCycle Degreaser and a little elbow grease.

Pack / Nature Approval: We’ve been using TerraCycle Natural Degreaser for over a year, and none of the 24Paws Pack suffered any negative responses. Tristan, Mr. Sensitive Nose & Skin, never sneezed or presented with any allergic reactions when he was in the room or area where the spray was being applied. When we’ve applied the cleanser outside, there were no visible traces of our use – no dead grass, flowers, or any other living element.

Human Response: As someone with both asthma and extremely fair and sensitive skin, I’ve neither had a reaction to the solution when it has had contact with my skin, nor has it induced an asthma attack.

24Paws Rating:  5 Paws (5/5)

5 Paw Rating for Excellence

The Product: Natural Degreaser – Non-Toxic, Biodegradable, Environmentally Friendly

Company & Site: TerraCycle

How’d We Get our Paws On It? TerraCycle sent it to us.

Retail Price: $2.99 – $4.99 for 34 fl. oz. (1L)

Easily portable: Yes. Willing to clean wherever the desire takes you.

Why we like it: Non-toxic, No Fragrances or Dyes, Biodegradable, pet and people friendly/safe ingredients, is an effective cleaner without being harsh, is NOT tested on animals, contains no animal-derived products, packaged in a waste stream recyclable bottle, is absent of ammonia, phosphate and petroleum ingredients. This non-abrasive cleanser does the job without walking away with peeling/burning skin or a diminished product.

Room For Improvement: Would like to see a completely transparent ingredient list

To Sum It Up: We’ll simply repeat what we’ve said before, “We love the fact that the ingredients in these products are pronounceable, identifiable, and natural. However, as sticklers for transparent ingredient lists, we’d like to see exactly what ‘essential oil cleaners’ they are putting into the products. We love essential oils, but sometimes there are sensitivity issues with them and it would be nice to know what’s under the cap. However, this issue doesn’t take away from the fact that these products were successful in removing stains, dirt and grime, while being gentle on our floors, skin, and sense of smell, not to mention the planet.”

Ingredient List:

Water, grease cutters and performance enhancers (linear alcohol ethoxylates), essential oil cleaners and soaps, all derived from natural sources.

Check out out our full Review/Rating Process Guidelines

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Not Just For Humans and a Product Review: Absorbent Underpads

For the past two years we’ve been a house well stocked with baby wipes and incontinence pads. Not exactly items you’d expect in a home dedicated to fur-kids, but they are daily essentials for our pack.

We started using baby wipes a few years ago to help clean the folds around Tristan’s mouth as he is prone to develop an allergic reaction to any dirt, dust, or stray food particles that might linger on him. He requires a very gentle product that doesn’t contain alcohol (because it stings and burns any open wounds or scratches and acts as an irritant to his skin), no fragrances, and no dyes.

Other uses for these wipes:

  • cleaning ears – very gentle, large, and two-sided
  • cleaning around the eyes – very gentle
  • cleaning up any mistakes that may occur while on the road
  • wiping down the saddle portion of Tristan’s cart to maintain a clean seat

Speaking of other uses for “human” products:

If you’re pet is experiencing recovery from surgery, incontinence, sickness, or just potty training, you quickly become acquainted with the products on the market that will help make the best out of your situation.

Most pet parents are familiar with the disposable absorbent pads that can be used for any of the above situations. We really like these for traveling (even small trips become long trips with an incontinent dog), and for use when an animal is violently ill. These pads really saved the day for all of us when Frosty was in his last weeks and controlling his diarrhea became our own Olympic trial.

There are manufacturers who produce biodegradable versions of these pads, and we really like those, because if you must use these pads very often they do create a lot of waste.

However, you may find that you are better served by a washable, waterproof, and absorbent fabric underpad. These would especially be good for a pet who has undergone surgery, as they often have a spot that leaks, drains, or even bleeds.

Tristan has moments of incontinence when he is asleep, as well as when he first awakens and gets to a standing position. We had been using an old twin mattress pad cover that had a cotton top with a plastic bottom. It was waterproof, and it did work well, but after about six washings, just fell apart.

I happened to stumble upon exactly what we needed quite by accident one day. I found myself in the incontinence/bladder control section of the store and saw the following box:

Waterproof Sheet Protector Absorbent Underpad by Inspire

These pads are large (30″ x 34″), washable and reusable, have a non-slip bottom layer that keeps Tristan standing instead of sliding, a waterproof barrier, a soaker core, and a dry-touch top layer that wicks moisture into the pad. They make a larger size (36″ x 72″), but I haven’t seen it available locally.

Here is the top (white side) and underside (green) of the pad:

We’ve been using them now for a little over a month, and after many washings, they are still performing like new. All this for just shy of $10.00. You can find them at a variety of stores that may be in your neighborhood, or check the online retail list.

There are comparable products marketed specifically for pets, but you’ll pay a great deal more for them.

24Paws Rating: 5 Paws (5/5)

5 Paw Rating for Excellence

The Product: Waterproof Sheet Protector Absorbent Underpad

Company & Site: K2 Health Products, Inspire Brand

Retail Price: $9.00 – $11.00

How’d we get our paws on it: Purchased at a local store

Why we love it: Economical, large, portable, non-staining, doesn’t leak, washable, reusable, and safe for the elderly or young pup who can’t get their footing very easily. Machine washable and dryable.

Room for improvement: We wonder if an antimicrobial agent applied to the material would be a beneficial feature to the product or cause a price increase that would be unjustified. There doesn’t seem to be much of an odor-blocking element to the pads. Not that there is an overwhelming odor, as the moisture is quickly drawn into the core of the pad, and they launder beautifully and dry quickly.

Remember: Let your pets inspire you – poke your nose around different sections of your favorite stores…you never know what you’ll find. Dare to explore!

Got a favorite incontinence product you’d like to share? How about a product that is marketed for use by humans but is a great item for pets?

Check out our full Review/Rating Process Guidelines

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Review: TerraCycle Pet Stain & Odor Remover

A little known fact: One of the greatest gifts you can give a new pet parent is a general cleanser for pet mistakes and odors. Sure, toys are great, but nothing comes close to having a good cleanser on hand when those unmentionable accidents occur.

There will be plenty of accidents throughout the life stages of your companion animal. Potty training, illness, hairballs, and geriatric incontinence are just a few instances that will keep you invested in and attuned to the pet cleaning supplies on the market.

Read those product labels and go in search of the answers to these questions: Is it toxic? Will it, in a great irony, stain my fabrics, floors, and carpets as it attempts to remove my pet’s latest accident? Will it, should it touch my skin, cause me to rush to the hospital? Is the fragrance overwhelming? Is it free of animal-derived products? Will it work as advertised? Is it affordable?

We are way past the puppy stage, with Grandbury at 15 and Tristan at 14, but we still use a pet cleaning product on a daily basis. Tristan is beginning to exhibits signs of Canine Cognitive Dysfunction (CCD) and he often gets the message to eliminate a bit too late for him to physically get up and alert us to his need to go outside. He does his very best, but sometimes there are mistakes. Tristan, like all of our pack, took to potty training quickly, and never wants to eliminate in the house. A product that cleans up his accidents quickly and effectively is a must.

Tristan is a Siberian Husky, and like most white dogs, he is extremely sensitive to fragrance and chemicals in general. Room sprays and carpet powders can set him into a sneezing fit. General household cleansers and “pet safe” products have made him sick with allergic reactions and chemical burns.

In contrast, Grandbury has an occasional bile spit-up, and Winni has a twice monthly hairball hack.

TerraCycle has a soft spot in many people’s hearts, ours included. The company has made a name for itself as a leader in green business practices by creating new consumer products packaged in discarded trash. When they sent over some of their new pet products for us to try out, we jumped at the chance to put the cleansers to the test.


I had just finished reading the ingredients on the TerraCycle Pet Stain and Odor Remover bottle when Winni decided to supply me with her first test sample–a hairball. For those who don’t share their life with a cat, when I say hairball, note that it should read, “lump of wet hair covered /accompanied by bile/vomit rarely displaced in one location.” Cats will occasionally rid their bodies of these compacted hairballs. Some pet parents clean them up weekly, and others, like us, expect to see them once or twice a month.

Winni decided to produce the hairball in question in the one place we have carpet. She ran from the hardwood floors to the lone remaining carpeted room. If she can’t get into the room, she’ll most certainly find a nearby rug. No better time to test the TerraCycle All Natural Pet Stain and Odor Remover.

I removed the hairball and just as the package describes, sprayed the stain and odor remover on the spots to be cleaned. I immediately noticed a lack of fragrance or scent, which for my house, is a plus. The spray nozzle worked great, dispersing plenty of solution with each squeeze of the trigger. I allowed the solution to soak into the carpet and then blotted the spot with a cloth. The directions state to keep the area damp for several hours as the solution continues to work on the stains/odors.

As I blotted the spot, the vomit/bile came right up from the carpet fibers. A few more blotted spots and all visible signs of the hairball hack had been eliminated. My carpet remained intact and there was no bleaching or spotting of the carpet. There were no traces of any stain or odor.


Later in the afternoon, Tristan provided a mishap of his own in order that that we could test the TerraCycle All Natural Stain & Odor Remover Hardfloors solution. We have sealed hardwood floors. Most chemical cleansers will eat through a floor finish, leave dull spots, or discolor a hardwood floor.

Application couldn’t be simpler. After removing the excess solid waste, I sprayed the solution directly onto the hardwood floor and waited approximately 3 minutes before I wiped the spot dry with a clean cloth. No rinsing required. The solution can be used on marble, tile, linoleum, and brick floors as well.

Ever the curious Sibe, Tristan came closer to sniff the solution I had just sprayed. I waited… he blinked and walked on. No sneezes, no runny noses, no reaction.

Pack Approval: Our boys Tristan and Grandbury have had no ill responses to these products after a month of use. Tristan doesn’t sneeze or have any allergic reaction to the solution as it is being applied to a nearby stain/odor, nor does he have a reaction to any treated spot.

Human Response: As an asthma sufferer, I haven’t had a reaction to the solution. While the packaging cautions that you should avoid contact with your eyes, open cuts, and sores, I haven’t had a reaction to the solution when it has accidentally blown back on my skin. I have extremely fair and sensitive skin, so I’ve been pleased with the non-reactive response.

24Paws Rating: 5 Paws (5/5)

5 Paw Rating for Excellence

We give both products a 5 Paw Rating, with 5 being the highest.

The Products:

  • All Natural Stain & Odor Remover – Lifts and Removes Stubborn Pet Stains & Odors
  • All Natural Stain & Odor Remover Hardfloors – Odor & Stain Remover For All Hard Surfaces

Company & Site: TerraCycle

How’d We Get Our Paws On It? TerraCycle sent them to us.

Retail Price: $10.99 – $12.00 for 32 oz. (946 mL)

Easily portable: Yes, sometimes you need a little protection for the road

Why We Like It: No strong fragrance, cleaned up our messes, created from earth, pet, and people friendly/safe ingredients, didn’t burn our skin, didn’t make Tristan sneeze, is NOT tested on animals, contains no animal-derived products, Packaged in a 32 oz. waste stream recyclable bottles, absent of ammonia, phosphate and petroleum ingredients, biodegradable, comes with a money back guarantee

Room For Improvement: Retail price seems high for the size of the product, would like to see a completely transparent ingredient list, would like to know how effective it is on eliminating bacteria like E. coli from the surface where the accidents occurred

To Sum It Up: We love the fact that the ingredients in these products are pronounceable, identifiable, and natural. However, as sticklers for transparent ingredient lists, we’d like to see exactly what “essential oil cleaners” they are putting into the products. We love essential oils, but sometimes there are sensitivity issues with them and it would be nice to know what’s under the cap. However, this issue doesn’t take away from the fact that these products were successful in removing both odors and stains while being gentle on our floors, skin, and sense of smell, not to mention the planet.

Ingredient List:

  • All Natural Stain & Odor Remover – Lifts and Removes Stubborn Pet Stains & Odors

Water, grease cutters and performance enhancers (linear alcohol ethoxylates), and essential oil cleaners, all derived from natural sources

  • All Natural Stain & Odor Remover Hardfloors – Odor & Stain Remover For All Hard Surfaces

Water, grease cutters and performance enhancers (linear alcohol ethoxylates), and essential oil cleaners, all derived from natural sources.

Check out our full Review/Rating Process Guidelines

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Two Reviews: Through A Dog’s Ear Book & CD

In high school, my friend did a science fair project on a plant’s exposure to certain types of music. She divided her plants into two groups. Each group of identical plants received the same amount of light, food, water, and nutrients. The only variables that differed were the types of music the plants were exposed to each day. One group grew heartily to the tunes of country music, while the other group died a slimy death to the beats of heavy metal.

You don’t have to create an elaborate science fair project to know that music affects our mood, our movements, and feelings. It doesn’t take a leap to understand that our non-human animal counterparts are also affected by the sounds in their environments. It may, however, require a bit more science to explain how we can harness that awareness and help soothe our canine companions when the sounds that surround them are anything but lullabies.

It seems the plants are on to something.

Just in time for the loud summer celebrations on the horizon, here are two product reviews.

Through A Dog’s Ear, Music to Calm Your Canine Companion, Vol. 1

Performed by award-winning concert pianist, Lisa Spector
Produced by Joshua Leeds

Through the combined efforts of a psychoacoustician, an award-winning pianist, and a veterinary neurologist, a musical experience has been created that focuses on rhythm, pattern, and tone to create an auditory environment that is calming to our canine companions.

You may already be experimenting in your household with psychoacoustics (“the study of the perception of sound”) and animal bioacoustics (“the study of sound in non-human animals. Both sounds they make and the effect of human-made noise on animals”) when you leave a radio playing for your dogs when you need to be away from them for a period of time.

However, while classical musical in general tends to work as a stress reducer, music that is psychoacoustically arranged can be more effective at reducing stress and eliminating stress-induced behaviors for our canine counterparts. The CD comes with a great guide that details their BioAcoustic Research & Development (BARD) pilot studies conducted on dogs at humane societies, boarding facilities, veterinary hospitals, training facilities, and residencies.

Psychoacoustically designed classical music caused 70 percent of dogs in stressful kennel environments and 85 percent of dogs in their homes to be noticeably calmer after listening to the music. – BARD Canine Research Summary

The guide included with the CD provides tips and techniques to properly introduce and use the CD while addressing specific issues like separation anxiety, thunderstorm anxiety, fireworks, boarding, and excitement with visitors.

CD length: 59:58 mins. Full Track Listings & links to Free Downloads

Pack Approval: Our boys Tristan & Grandbury settle down and go right to sleep when this CD is played.

Grandbury has always been afraid of thunderstorms. As he ages, he has mellowed out a bit, but with this music he doesn’t notice a thing. I only wish we had come by this CD in his youth, for when he would awaken in the middle of the night and spin into panic mode, it often ended up with him trembling and clawing at our faces in an attempt to awaken us to alert of us of the impending doom of the storm.

Tristan, a life-long sufferer from separation anxiety, has undoubtedly improved over the years, but in his advanced age he now displays CCD (Canine Cognitive Dysfunction) symptoms like twilight pacing. Two cruciate surgeries, arthritis, and muscle atrophy aren’t kind to a dog who has taken to olympic pacing. The CD truly helps him relax and keeps him off his feet.

And Winni the cat? She takes her cues from her brothers and snoozes alongside them. What can I say? She is a cat who believes in her heart that she is a dog.

Human Response: This CD makes me, an insomniac who has the inability to nap, begin to relax and desire nothing more than a few blissful moments of sleep. I’m planning on carting this in to my next dental appointment for a little relaxation assistance. The CD does come with a warning that one should not drive or operate heavy machinery while listening to the CD.

For those of you wondering about our plants, all are doing well and none have died while being exposed to the tunes.

Through A Dog’s Ear: Using Sound to Improve the Health & Behavior of Your Canine Companion (Hardcover book)

by Joshua Leeds & Susan Wagner, DVM, MS

Includes music clinically demonstrated to calm your dog

Performed by award-winning concert pianist, Lisa Spector

We listened to the CD, Through A Dog’s Ear: Music to Calm Your Canine Companion, Vol. 1, and while we were introduced to the idea of psychoacoustically arranged music, the book further delves into the research behind the music and helps to explain why the music works to soothe your beloved canine.

The book comes with a 45-minute “starter” CD that takes the research you read about and allows you to see it in a real-world application right in your living room. The enclosed CD contains selections from two music compilations, Music to Calm Your Canine Companion, Vols. 1 & 2, and Music for the Canine Household.

The book explores the concept that humans and canines are not that different when it comes to the responses both exhibit when exposed to specific tones, rhythms, and patterns in music. As I said, the CD (Music to Calm Your Canine Companion, Vol. 1) makes me and my pack sleepy. Interestingly enough, the tempo of music that has the most profound effect on dogs is that which reflects the most “ideal relaxed heart rate” of a human.

Think you’ll just turn on the classical station and your problems are solved? Think again. Classical music comes in many different variations and compositions. The one song that is playing now may be rhythmically calming and you and your pooch find yourselves beginning to nod off into dreamland when “BAM!” the next song begins with a jarring note that makes your pulse race and you find yourself driven to move, if only to turn the radio off. You’ve just experienced the difference and variation you don’t want to subject your pet to when you are attempting to create a calming environment for them.

The Music to Calm Your Canine Companion CD has been arranged to reduce the heart rate “by progressively slowing rhythms and simplifying auditory data.” No jarring notes or loud cymbals here.

The book helps the reader to seek out a balance between the clashing and confusing sounds of the human world as translated in the canine world. Our human activities and associated sounds can be extreme sources of confusion and fear for our companion animals.

Fourth of July, anyone? The noises, smells, and vibrations that surround us are just loud and smelly events that confuse a dog. They have no frame of reference to place the activities and thus, the barrage of sounds and scents become assailants on our sensitive partners. They don’t know whether to run toward the noise and find out what it is or run away from it. Wait, then there is you, their beloved human to consider. Do you need protecting or warning? Their senses are overloaded and over-stimulated.

The book asks the questions all good pet parents should be asking, like:

Is the auditory environment we create for our companion animals the best suited for them? How are my companion animals responding to the noises and sound they are exposed to on a daily basis? What sounds make my pet agitated, stressed, happy, calm, or restful?

The enclosed selections from Music for the Canine Household are perfect for those times when you want your companion animal to be relaxed but don’t want to be lulled to sleep yourself. The quicker tempos and upbeat selections provide an enjoyable and relaxing backdrop to the everyday.

In addition to the research, the book is peppered with touching stories from animal lovers, making for an educational and enjoyable read. The book encourages the reader to look at music and sound as therapy for what ails you and your pet. The power of sound, especially music, is too often overlooked, but with this book and CD series, the pet parent now has a method and a means to create an environment that is pleasing and calming to the ear of their companion canines.

Music on the CD: 4 selections from Music to Calm Your Canine Companion series, Vols. 1 &2 (23:09 mins.), and 4 selections from the Music for the Canine Household (21:33 mins.)

24Paws Rating: 5 Paws (5/5)

5 Paw Rating for Excellence

 We give both products a 5 Paw Rating, with 5 being the highest.

The Products:

  • Through A Dog’s Ear, Music to Calm Your Canine Companion, Vol. 1
  • Through A Dog’s Ear, Using Sound to Improve the Health & Behavior of Your Canine Companion (Hardback book)

How’d We Get Our Paws On It? Initially, we checked out from our local library.

Why We Like It: educational, effective, portable, reliable, and a drug-free therapy to combat a number of issues pet parents encounter every day. The book comes with a CD that is anything but a demo or starter (it is 45 mins. in length).

Room For Improvement: Honestly, we don’t have anything but the suggestion that they never stop producing these CD’s and continuing to conduct and share their research with the pet parents and animal organizations who strive to do better by our companion animals.

To Sum It up: Take it from the insomniac and two geriatric dogs who have battled with separation anxiety, thunderstorm fear, over-stimulation from external forces, and periods of containment and rest dictated by surgical procedures–we wish we had come across this CD and book much earlier in our journey together. We might all have had more restful nights and a few less wrinkles too.

As previous directors for an animal shelter, we encourage anyone in the animal welfare/rescue field to evaluate these products and use them to the benefit of the animals in your care. Take advantage of the Through a Dog’s Ear Shelter Program and receive Music to Calm Your Canine Companion, Vols. I-II (2 hours worth of music) for FREE, and you can further apply to receive free CD’s for your new adopters to take home with them (up to 200, w/ the option to continue to receive them at a generously reduced fee + the cost of shipping).

We encourage you to read more about the research that went into the creation of these products. See the links below.

Check out our full Review/Rating Process Guidelines