Woodhaven Part II: Cottage Retreat Pays Off – Test Results are In!

victor with heartsSix years ago, I couldn’t imagine living with a dog.

Today, I can’t imagine living without him.

Victor, my cocker-cross, changed my life six years ago, the minute I put him in my car, and drove home fully aware I had not started that day with the intention of getting a dog. But the universe had other plans for me – and him.

The universe is wise.

Last week, I spent quality time with my precious Victor at the dog-friendly Woodhaven Country Lodge in Ontario, Canada chasing chipmunks, wading into the lake and waiting on an oncology report.

Victor has swollen lymph nodes and the vet wanted to ‘rule out’ possibilities. I braced for the worst. When we got back from our awesome cottage experience, Victor needed more tests. It wasn’t looking good.

Then the biopsy came back: NO CANCER CELLS detected. He needs a good dose of anti-biotics and we are still not sure what is causing the inflammation, but …

Imagine my relief. We’ve got more time together. Who knows how much, but I’m making a list to take full advantage of whatever energy, mobility and enthusiasm we have left.

Time to focus again on what’s important: spoiling Victor.

sasha cottage 2That said, here’s some dog stuff we took for a trial run along Buckhorn Lake in the scenic Kawartha’s, Ontario’s other favourite cottage country.

1. Carolina Pet Company Bed in a Bag … for dogs.

I met Carolina Pet Company at SuperZoo 2017, and when I told them I travel with my dog, they said, ‘we have just the thing,’ and they sent me a ‘Bed and Bag’ – a sleeping bag for dogs – in exchange for an honest review. (Amazon.com affiliate link)

dog sleeping bag 2So here it is: we don’t camp much. By camping, I mean in tents. This Bed an Bag is ideal for that. Made like a sleeping bag but with no opening, this oval has polyester fibre fill for softness, and one side is water resistant to keep moisture away from sleeping dogs.

It rolls neatly into a drawstring bag, just like every human-sized sleeping bag I’ve ever struggled with, and has a carry strap. I’m going to keep this in the car because … you never know when you’re going to need to put a moisture barrier between the ground and your dog.

During our cottage experience, I unrolled it on the deck and Victor soon realized this was his place to curl up and preferred it over the hard deck. However, he kept ‘digging’ it into a ball before he laid down. After the fact, I noted four built-it stake loops – very hand if we were on the ground.

2. Beer Paws Beer for Dogs

What better place to test beer than at the cottage? Ok, it’s not really beer – there’s no alcohol content but there is malt extract … and water, and beef broth with K9 glucosamine.

Beer Paws is essentially a liquid treat that can be consumed straight, poured into a bowl, or frozen into summer ‘pupcicles.’

What did the dogs think? No surprise, my Victor was uninterested. He’s picky. His friend Sasha, however, took a sip, was hesitant at first (hey, beer is an acquired taste) then finished the entire bowl. I guess she’ll have an hankering for beef broth now.

3. Caru Dog Treats

If you’re lazing on the deck, enjoying a bowl of beer, what’s carubetter than some jerky? If you’re a dog. Ok, it’s not exactly jerky but both dogs loved it anyway. Caru beef soft and tasty baked bars (affiliate link) are made in the USA from real beef, blueberries and cranberries with no wheat, gluten, soy or by-products. Neither dog, including my picky Victor. Thanks to BlogPaws for providing us sample bags to review.

4. Quick Bath Dog Wipes

Just because we’re on a short vacation, doesn’t mean we skip the baths. Well, Victor didn’t get a full out bath (and Sasha jumped in the lake ever minute) but I did need to wipe the dogs down especially because the furniture was not off limits (see previous post here).quick bath

Quick Bath (affiliate link) extra thick and heavy duty came in handy and I only needed one per wipe down. (Well, two for the giant Sasha and her lake water cologne). From International Veterinary Sciences (IVS), these pH neural, pre-moistened wipes remove dirt and dander, helps eliminate bacteria and odor (important while travelling) and come in a compact easy to reseal package small to pack than a roll of paper towels.

UP NEXT: Cancer-free Victor heads to Woofstock! Toronto’s biggest outdoor dog festival.

UPDATE: Unfortunately, as of Fall of 2021, Woodhaven Country Lodge is no longer open.


  1. […] discovered this place with my previous dog and his buddy – check it out here – and we stayed in Jill’s Cottage, the one with the largest fenced […]

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  3. […] dog. Not alcohol, of course (that’s toxic for dogs) but broth. Like Paws Beer we reviewed before (check it out), Apollo Peak Dog Beer is meat broth, this time chicken. Made with rocky mountain fresh water (yup) […]

  4. Anonymous · · Reply

    how about beer paws for Humans? If not the dog version will have to do

  5. Sandy Weinstein · · Reply

    so glad the biopsy came back negative. i now get every little bump tested on my girls. you just never know these days. Evie passed away in Aug. of histiocytic sarcoma. her bump was b/t her toes so it was very hard to feel because it was right on the bone. .

    1. Thank you. I’m sorry to hear about Evie. My groomer actually found a growth on my dog’s foot that I had removed early this year – he walks much better now.

  6. Jacquie Durand (TMAC) · · Reply

    Nice piece, Sherri. And I am so happy to hear Victor is going to be okay after receiving proper attention and meds, thanks to such a loving mom.

    1. Thanks so much. I appreciate the kind words.

  7. Anonymous · · Reply

    Good news about Victor. It’s hard not to expect the worse, but such a relief when it turns out OK.

    PS. Thanks for turning Sasha into my drinking buddy.

    1. Thanks. Sasha’s a good buddy to Vic too even if he is a tea totaller.

  8. We hope Victor will be good as new with the antibiotic treatments. Our Floozee at 12.5 years just completed a one week dose and seems to be doing better with her rear end inflammation. Say hello to Woofstock for us!

    1. Thanks so much. Good to hear about your Floozee!

  9. […] [Update: Find out Victor’s Test Results Here!] […]

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