The Takeaway: Keeping Your Estate Up to Date

If you have children, you’ve probably thought about who would care for them should something happen to you. But have you thought of who might care for aging parents? Today’s society demands “new considerations” when it comes to estate planning, says the BMO Retirement Institute. The group’s new report, “Estate planning in the 21st century: New considerations in a changing society,” instructs Americans to review estate plans to factor in parents, pets and technology.

And the AARP Mutt Madness Winner Is …

KODY! Out of 59 dogs, this gorgeous Great Pyrenees outlasted them all. Kody was the front-runner from the very beginning as his human, Vicki, masterfully promoted him and garnered tons of “Likes” from her friends and family in each round. Kody gets to boast for a year that he’s the Mutt Madness Top Dog. Good on him! Let’s not forget about the runner-up: the lovable Indi, who’s owner submitted her picture in memory of the playful yellow lab. Indi died from cancer in February. We congratulate …

It’s Never Too Late: Quit Smoking Now For the Sake of Your Health, Your Wallet, Your Pets

Tomorrow is the Great American Smokeout, a day when smokers are encouraged to quit or to make a plan to quit smoking. Tobacco use remains the single largest preventable cause of disease and premature death in the U.S., yet more than 46 million Americans still smoke. However, according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, 68.8 percent of current smokers want to completely stop smoking and 52.4 percent of smokers made a quit attempt in the past year. The …

Think Your Doctor Bills Are High? Check Your Pooch’s

They may be man’s (and  woman’s) best friends, but  their health care expenses are soaring right along with ours. Over the last 10 years, pet care bills have climbed steadily higher at almost the same rate as human health-care costs. According to the American Pet Products Association, total pet-related expenditures by the end of 2011 are expected to top $50 billion — half of that for vet care and over-the-counter medicine and supplies — compared to $48 billion last year …

Gadgets Gone Wild: Do I Really Need to LoJack My Dog?

After reading this entry from the Smithsonian’s Innvoations blog I feel way too analog when it comes to my dogs. I love my gadgets, don’t get me wrong, but never in a million years would I dream of having a LoJack on my critter. Ask anyone who knows me, I love my two beagles. They roll their eyes and cringe when they hear a sentence that begins with “Blarney did the funniest thing today” or “Did I tell you the …

Feeding Jackson

My Dad has always had a way with animals. When he was a kid, he always wanted a dog but his mother worked and wouldn’t allow it. When he and Mom married, they brought their first dog into the family, and ever since then we’ve almost always had at least one four-legged family member…including dogs, cats, horses, cows – oh and the chickens. Dad could hold those Banty chickens in his arms and pet them like cats. I found Jackson, a “Schnoodle,” …