Living on a busy street in downtown Napa definitely has its pros and cons. Do I hear a lot of street traffic and the occasional neighborhood banter? Yes. Do I like it? Ehh not so much. Luckily, I do live in close proximity to work, restaurants, and markets, and the best part is that I also get to be smack dab between three fire stations and a police station and hear a lot of sirens throughout the day.  Wait what? That’s a good thing? Well, maybe if I needed medical assistance. Regardless, the real reason it’s awesome is that my dog Ruby, who upon being rescued from the streets of LA and was pitched as a maltipoo (she’s not), springs into action when these sirens go off. We can all imagine what these sirens sound like when they first alarm, it’s a slow build up of “wooeeeoowwweeeooo” and continues for about 15 seconds until the sound fades off into the distance. Anyways, while all this is going on, one of my favorite things sometimes happens. Ruby runs out on the patio with her chest out and ears raised as she slowly tilts her head to the sky and lets out a continuous howl as if she were a wolf howling to the moon. What can I say, I think my maltimutt is the cutest little wolf out there.  

Now, there isn’t a clear indication of when the phenotypic changes between the dog and the wolf really took place, it’s been found that the first dogs were certainly “wolflike”. Yet, after years of research, scientists are still baffled by when the domestication of dogs actually took place with recent evidence stating that the genetic overlap seen today between wolves and dogs are most likely due to interbreeding after domestication. So dogs are more similar to dogs and wolves more similar to wolves. The consensus as of late is that dogs and wolves actually share a common canid ancestor. You can go down a rabbit hole of information discussing their similarities and differences, but what I’m focusing on is their similarities which is where I got the idea for the logo identified with Paws Out.

The wolf logo with the mountainous scenic view in its silhouette represents the idea that all dogs, big and small need to get their fix of the outdoors on a daily basis. It’s in their blood. They thrive on the fresh air, the novelty of the outdoor environment, and the socialization that makes them pack animals.  Wolves live in packs and work as a group because they need each other to survive. Dogs don’t necessarily have packs, but that’s where we come in. They meet their social needs and exercise their loyalty with their owners.

I have two dogs at home. I’ve already talked about Ruby. She’s an all around crowd pleaser. If I want to go on a run, she’s ready. If I’m meeting a friend out for lunch, she’s relaxing and showing off how she cute she is to everyone else on the patio. If I’m hungover, she’s in bed with me until I feel better. Then there’s Ryder, a blue and red, 1 ½ year old heeler mix. As you might expect, he’s full of energy, and was built for the outdoors. When I get out of bed, he drops his ball at my feet. When I’m making dinner, he drops his ball at my feet. As I’m writing this blog, his ball is at my feet. They are completely different. Ryder needs about 2-3 hours of exercise a day, minimum. Ruby needs her exercise too, but after we go on our run in the morning she’s fine relaxing in the house if I don’t take her out after that. They both require different kinds of attention, and need their different social and behavioral needs to be met. If those needs aren’t met, their demeanor changes. Ryder becomes tense and destructive, while Ruby becomes upset and barks at every sound she hears.

Everyday I try to give my dogs their best life, which is the primary reason I decided to create Paws Out. I worked in hospitality for a few years and it would weigh on me that my dogs were at home, alone for long hours. I’ve noticed though, that even when I’m able to home all day with them, they exhibit “stir-crazy” behavior if they don’t get out of the house (even though my backyard is huge).  They need to be outside, smelling the fresh air, taking in their surroundings, meeting new dogs, new humans, and letting their “inner wolf” out by getting their paws dirty. Even if it’s just 30-minutes a day, those 30 minutes can make a world of difference in a dog’s day-to-day life. Dogs need to #getpawsout.