New year, new dog - best dogs for first-time owners

It’s a new year and the perfect time for a new furry family member. If your new year resolution is to add a new pup to your life, then this is the perfect Woof Wednesday post for you. We are going to give you a list of 10 dogs that are perfect for first time owners. From small to large breeds, to high-energy and lazy lap dogs we will give you a break down that will be a helpful guide to finding the perfect dog for you!


Choosing A Dog That Fits You

When picking out a dog it is good to ask yourself “What kind of dog would fit my lifestyle?”. Are you an active person who likes to be outdoors running around spontaneously? If so, then a high-energy dog that can keep up with your active schedule would be best for you. If you are more of a homebody who likes to stay in and stick to a slower pace routine, then a lazy lap dog is the way to go. Knowing what type of schedule, you carry day in and out is a helpful with your pup search.


The next question to ask yourself would be “Do I want a puppy or an older dog?”. If you are thinking the puppy route, then make sure you realize that caring for a puppy takes work. Puppies need time allotted for housetraining, socialization, obedient training and frequent vet visits. If this sounds like too much, then perhaps an adult dog will be a better fit for you. Adult dogs are typically already house trained and well-socialized, so you won’t have to spend the time training them. 

Dog Breeds for Beginners

Because there are so many different dog breeds out there, deciding what breed works best for you can be over whelming. Lucky for you, each dog breed has a relatively predictable size, energy level, and grooming need. Also, each dog breed has personality traits that are associated with them, these traits can help you select a dog that fits you and your needs. According to these are the top 10 best dogs for first-time owners.


If you are looking for a medium-large high-energy dog, look no further than the playful Boxer. This is a loyal dog that forms a close bond with family. If you lead a fairly active lifestyle, a Boxer could be right for you. This breed needs plenty of exercise and a strong foundation of training. The Boxer’s grooming needs are very basic. 


Though young Boxers can be a little hyperactive, they are not difficult to trained and they enjoy the attention. Once trained and socialized, Boxers will thrive in active households and can get along very well with kids. Guardians by nature, Boxers are naturally protective of their families, especially children. 


The Yorkshire Terrier is a great “starter dog” for those who want a little lap dog. However, you must be attentive to the grooming needs of this breed. Yorkies have continuously growing hair that must be brushed and trimmed regularly. If you have the time and budget for regular groomer visits, it will be fairly simple to keep your Yorkie in good condition. The Yorkie has moderate energy level and only needs basic exercise. Daily walks are great for this breed. 


Yorkies also need a solid foundation of training. Without structure, these little dogs can be stubborn and vocal. Trian your Yorkie as you would train a big dog. This will help strengthen the bond between you and lay down boundaries. The Yorkie will be your friend for life. This breed is affectionate towards its owner and may even act protective around strangers. 


The Bichon Frise is a happy -go-lucky little dog that looks a bit like a bouncy cotton ball. This breed is an all-around great companion. Bichons are fairly easy to train and adapt well to any lifestyle. Be sure to dedicate the time and money to regular groomer visits. This breed has a curly coat that must be trimmed regularly and brushed carefully. For a lower maintenance coat, keep your Bichon’s hair trimmed short. 


The Bichon is a great dog for families with children or apartment living. Daily basic exercise is enough to keep this breed happy and healthy. 


The Labrador Retriever is one of the most popular and recognizable medium-large dog breeds. Labs are deeply loyal and affectionate dogs that form close bonds with their families. This breed is active, playful and smart. Labs thrive in active, households that can provide plenty of exercise and training. Labs love to learn and can be trained to do almost anything. You can play fetch for hours or go for a run with your Lab, then end the busy day snuggling on the couch. 


Without plenty of exercise and mental stimulation, Labs may get bored and act out, especially during their younger years. Labs also tend to love all food and can easily become overweight if you are not careful. Fortunately, they only have minor grooming needs. Brush your Lab regularly to minimize shedding. If you take good care of your Lab, you will have a happy, loveable companion for life. Labs adapt well to most environments and are excellent with kids. 


Don’t let the diminutive frame of this dog food you. The Papillon is a hardy little dog that enjoys a somewhat active lifestyle. This cutie can be both your lap dog and exercise partner. The Papillon does not need a lot of exercise but does enjoy a chance to play and run around. The breed is easy to train and requires only moderate grooming. 


This happy, friendly and adaptable dog breed can do well in a variety of households. The Papillon even gets along well with children, but kids must be gentle with this petite dog. 


The Pomeranian is a dainty and sweet little lap dog. This breed is bright and moderately active with a big fluffy coat. Fortunately, this coat is not as high-maintenance as it looks. Regular brushing is generally all you need to keep your Pom looking good. Daily basic exercise is generally enough to keep your Pom happy. 


Poms need basic training to provide structure and boundaries. Without training, the breed’s feisty and stubborn side may come out. Fortunately, they respond well to consistent, positive training and will thrive because of it. The Pom often bonds closest to a single owner but can still do well in families. This breed is better with gentle older kids but can adapt to many situations.  


The poodle is a well-known, popular and versatile dog breed. This breed is available in three sizes: Toy, Miniature or Standard. All are very intelligent dogs that respond well to training. The poodle needs to be groomed regularly to maintain the curly, continuously growing coat. 


Poodles are very energetic dogs, they need plenty of exercise and mental stimulation. With proper care, you are likely to find this breed to be a wonderful companion. The Poodle is very adaptable to its environment and can do very well in a variety of households, including those with children. 


The Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is a sweet affectionate dog with a puppy-like appearance. This breed is small but not tiny and has a gentle demeanor. The Cavalier’s moderate energy level means basic daily exercise is typically enough to maintain health. Despite a medium-length coat, this dog’s grooming needs are basic. Regular brushing is important to avoid tangles in the hair. 


The Cavalier needs basic training and responds to it well. This dog is elegant, attentive and generally quiet. Cavaliers can thrive in all kinds of households and tend to get along well with children of all ages.


The Golden Retriever is the quintessential family dog. This medium-large dog is happy, loyal, affectionate and active. Goldens are smart and adaptable dogs that can thrive in most households. The breed does need regular brushing to keep its coat free of tangles and mats. Goldens also need a good amount of exercise to keep them in good physical condition and prevent boredom. Training is essential but not difficult. They love to learn and can be trained to do a number of things. 


Gold Retrievers are eager to please and love spending time with their families. They are excellent with children of all ages. It’s no wonder this is one of the world’s most popular dogs!


When considering which breed is right for you, it’s important to remember mixed-breed dogs. These one-of-a-kind dogs can make wonderful companions. By adopting a mixed-breed dog, you are also helping to reduce pet overpopulation in shelters. 

If you are not sure which breed is right for you or you want a combination of breeds, visit your local shelter or rescue group and meet some adorable mutts. Workers can help you find a dog with the traits you desire. Training, exercise, and grooming are necessary for all dogs, but the needs of a mixed-breed dog will vary based on its unique makeup. 

Did the dog you were thinking about make the list? If these 10 dogs aren’t what you are looking for make sure you do your research. Knowing a dog’s characteristics and personality beforehand will be a helpful process not only for you but the dog as well. We here at The Ark wish you the best luck on your dog hunt. Remember to stop by any of The Ark locations to pick up supplies before you get your pet. Slobberbones carries all types of dog foods, toys, and treats that will be perfect for your new addition. Also, be sure to sign your new pup up for doggy daycare. The first day is always FREE and we offer great daycare packages that can save you money! Who doesn’t like the sound of that?! 

For more information about The Ark Pet Spa & Hotel service visit our website


Posted by Ark Crew  | Category: Dog

CBD For Pets - a growing trend

Many people think of their pet as their children. If you notice something is off with your child, you pick up your phone and start to google their symptoms. Same with your pet. Nine times out of ten the answer you come up with indicates that your child or pet has some unknown disease that started somewhere in South Africa and the end result is either cancer or the need of medication. What if we told you there is an alternative way around the need of medication? That's where CBD comes in to play. CBD is on a rise not just in humans but also in pets. You may be asking yourself what exactly is CBD and how can it benefit my pet? We are here to inform you more about CBD, its benefits and also to hear from some of The Ark customers and their experience with CBD. 

What is CBD

What is CBD? CBD or cannabidiol, is a compound found in cannabis, the plant we often associate with marijuana. Cannabidiol is one of over 113 "cannabinoids" that is found in the cannabis plant. It is important to note that CBD has no known toxicity level, so it is incapable of causing an overdose and will not get your pet "high". Unlike THC, the main psychoactive compound in marijuana, CBD is completely non-psychoactive and safe to be used on pets. Most CBD found in cannabis pet supplements is usually sourced from hemp, a variety of cannabis that naturally contains extremely low concentrations of THC. 

Symptoms & customer experience

We asked several of our customers about their experience with CBD products, what symptoms their dog experienced before the CBD and how their symptoms ease up after the use of CBD. 

Jared Digby said that their dog Quyn was born with hip dysplasia. Because of this, she had an increasing level of pain and discomfort as she's aged. It was hard for the Digby family to watch Quyn limp around and whimper from the pain and so they turned to CBD to avoid prescription medications that can be tough on a dog's liver and kidneys. After a proper dose of CBD, they noticed that Quyn's external symptoms were less pronounced. For example, she could maintain activity for a longer period of time and was limping less after that activity. 

Another customer Pat Ferguson is an avid user of the Whole Pet CBD oil pens. Her reason for use? X-rays showed that her dog Duffy has arthritis in his joints, hips and back. Duffy also showed aggression if he was touched  where he hurt. After the use of the oil pens, Pat says he is much more relaxed, runs without pain and is not longer aggressive when petted in an area of pain. 

how CBD interacts with the body

Why do symptoms ease with the use of CBD? CBD interacts with the body via the endocannabinoid system, or ECS. The ECS is a biological system found in all mammals and is involved in managing a wide variety of biological processes, including memory, sleep, immune response and more. The ECS consists of two types of camabinoid receptors CB1 and CB2. These receptors are build to interact with cannabinoids that are naturally produced by the brain. They can also interact with plant-derived cannabinoids like CBD. The effects of CBD are similar in humans, dogs, cats and other pets. Just like humans, dogs and cats also have endocannabinoid system that functions much like the human ECS. 

Benefits of CBD

There are several benefits of using CBD. After doing reseals we have found that these are the top 7 most common CBD benefits for dogs. 

  1. Powerful Painkiller - Studies show that CBD can help manage pain in many different ways. Thus, making it renowned for its painkilling properties.
  2. Anticonvulsant - Because CBD is a natural anticonvulsant it has the ability to help control seizures, tremors, tics and spasms.
  3. Anti-Inflammatory - This effect of CBD is believed to be one of the main reason the compound is so useful in treating a wide variety of conditions. 
  4. Reduces Anxiety and Stress - Studies have shown that CBD can help manage the symptoms of a variety of mental conditions, including anxiety. 
  5. Antiemetic - A strong body of evidence has shown that CBD is successful in controlling both nausea and vomiting while also stimulating appetite. 
  6. Anticancer Effects - Studies have shown that CBD can help protect against colon cancer in rats, by stopping the development, growth, and spread of malignant tumors. 
  7. Promotes Homeostasis - Many pet owners choose to use CBD not only as a medicine to treat a specific illness, but also as a regular supplement to promote the overall health and wellbeing of their pet.

In addition to the above list, Ferguson found that after CBD use Duffy sleeps more and is much more relaxed. Digby said he noticed a calming effect on his dog as well, especially during thunderstorms or fireworks which can be a very stressful time for a pet. 

CBD products we recommend

Slobberbones located in all of our Chattanooga Ark locations carry a few CBD products. Below is a list that we carry on hand or can order for you.

Whole Pet CBD - Presented by Mary's Nutritionals

Whole Pet Gel Pens

  • Quick delivery of pain relief delivered by placing gel pen to the ear of furry friend. 
  • Mary's patented transdermal gel pen contains 50 1mg doses of activated hemp extract.
  • Each dose can last up to 4 hours

Whole Pet Drops Regular or Extra Strength 

  • Regular: The 300mg potency is designed for pets up to 50 lbs. and provides .5mg per drop. 
  • Extra Strength: The 900mg potency is designed for pets over 50 lbs. and provides 1.5mg per drop.
  • Can be applied to food, a treat or directly to the back of the tongue using the graduated dropper. 
  • Intended for proactive daily cannabinoid therapy.
  • Delicious natural bacon flavor
  • Each incur is intended to provide a 30+ day supply

Mary's Whole Pet products are derived from compliant industrial hemp crops harvested in Colorado and audited by the Colorado Department of Agriculture. 

Complete Body Daily

Full Spectrum Remedy Hemp Oil

  • 500mg - 1ml dropper - 16.65mg.
  • Can be used in pets 35 lbs. up to 100+ lbs.
  • Works best when placed under the tongue for 30-60 seconds until dissolved.
Hempz: Dog Chews
  • Use as a treat or supplement to add to any dog's diet. Dosage can be administered 1-2 times per day or as needed for pain and anxiety relief.
  • Can be used in dogs 0-52+ lbs.

Complete Body Daily's Phytocannabinoid Hemp Oil provides a convenient delivery model for the industry's highest quality extract. Our proprietary manufacturing process provides optimum bioavailability to ensure maximum absorption. Remedy oil is produced from Organically Grown Hemp, is non-GMO, and most importantly is manufactured in the USA. 


Full Size Blueberry or Turkey Hard Chews (Large or Small)

  • Small: Full Spectrum hemp oil chews for pets under 50 lbs.
  • Large: Full Spectrum hemp oil chews for pets over 50 lbs.
  • Each small blueberry Treativles chew contains 1mg Full Spectrum Hemp Oil.
  • Safe and non-toxic

Treatibles products are Compassion Certified, made in the USA from USA-sourced ingredients, and contain quantified milligram levels of Full Spectrum Hemp Oil. 

After reading this article about CBD we hope that you now feel knowledgeable with what CBD is, how it works with your pets' body, the benefits of CBD as well as true testimonials from our customers and how CBD has been a lifesaver for their sweet pups. Be sure to check out our CBD products that we have in store at any of our Slobberbones locations. Our front desk Crew will be happy to help answer any additional questions you may have in regard to CBD.


Posted by Ark Crew  | Category: Pet Wellness

National Pet Travel Safety day

Today is National Pet Travel Safety Day. This day was created by pet and family lifestyle expert Colleen Paige to heighten awareness of the traveling needs of dogs and cats. Whether pet travel means a dog-friendly vacation, day trip, visit to a dog park, trip to the veterinarian or a ride home from The Ark, it's important to make each and every trip a safe one. Below are a few tips on how to make sure your pet travels safely. 

1. Just as you would never leave the driveway without ensuring that your child is safely buckled in with a seat belt or securely fastened into a car seat or booster seat, so your fur baby should also be restrained when you get behind the wheel. An unsecured dog is a danger to your dog, your passengers, and the driver.  

2. Cats travel best in their carrier. Help make travel easier on your cat by making the carrier a safe place for your cat. Leave the carrier out and open at home, lined with a cuddly blanket or sweater. Toss your cat's favorite treats and toys inside then let your cat come and go at will.

3. Secure all carriers with a seat belt so that, in the event of a sudden stop, the carrier is secured.

4. Don't let your dog or cat ride in the front passenger seat. The weight of their carrier will signal the air bag to deploy in case of an accident. This could possibly injure your pet with its 200 mph force when deployed. 

5. Don't let your dog ride in the bed of a pickup. You'd think this would go without saying but people still continue to travel with dogs in pickup beds. More and more states are making this illegal but regardless of the law, never drive with a dog in the bed of a truck. 

6. Choose car travel whenever possible. Car travel is less stressful on dogs and cats than air travel

7. Carry the scent of home. Your pet's favorite blanket or toy is a comforting scent of home in a new place, whether that's the carrier, vet's office or a hotel room. 

8. Give your pet the opportunities to stretch their legs with rest stops every two or three hours. Not only is it good for your dog, but the stop is good for the driver as well. 

9. Carry a record from your home vet confirming that your dog or cat has had all of their necessary shots. Hotels and other lodging establishments may require showing proof of vaccinations at check-in. It is also a good idea to keep a pet first aid kit in the car at all times. You never know when you might have an emergency and need to use the kit. 

10. Be sure to pack plenty of water and a water bowl for your trip. Having water on hand will help prevent dehydration on those long trips or trips to the dog park. It's also a good idea to travel with your pet's favorite food or cat litter. You would hate to find yourself having to buy a brand your pet isn't familiar with, just for them to refuse to eat it. 

11. Remember you should never leave your dog or cat alone in a car. Doing so puts your pet at risk of heat injuries, hypothermia and theft. 

12. Stop letting your dog put their head all the way out the window. There are several dangers with this. Your dog could lean to far out the window either in excitement or by accident and fall out of the car. Your dog could see another dog or squirrel and jump from the car. There are so many scenarios that could be avoided by keeping all windows up or cracking the window about an inch still allowing fresh air and scents to enter the car. 

We hope these 12 travel tips will help keep your pets safe throughout the new year. If you are needing a new water bowl or pet food, be sure to check out our selection at Slobberbones Bakery & Market located inside each of our Chattanooga Ark locations. We hope you and your pet have safe travels throughout the year!


Posted by Ark Crew  | Category: Pet Wellness



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