Monday, April 16, 2012

Save $3 on Blue Buffalo cat food!

Blue Buffalo is one of those brands that I keep on my "look-out for coupons" list. Well now cat owners can get a coupon for $3 off any bag of Blue Buffalo cat food simply for comparing their current brand to Blue Buffalo! You can even compare multiple brands of food at once! Blue Buffalo makes several different varieties of food, so it is easy to find a formula that is right for your cat. Compare your cat's food and save today!

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Blog the Change: How two kitties changed my life

My kitties are not rescues. They were not officially adopted. They were not given to me by a friend, the woman next door, or as a gift from a boyfriend. No, my kitties were a spur-of-the-moment decision, made when someone had a dog crate full of free kittens at a yard sale that I stopped at. It was hot, they were in the sun. I felt bad. I chose one, a tiny black kitty. She looked so sad and lonely that less than five minutes later I was carrying out her tuxedo brother as well. They were meant to be a gift to my father, a cat man if there ever was one. They never made it there. Instead they are currently snoring beside me, one at my feet and one in the window sill. My babies. My life. 

The kitties, ready to go to
their new home
As an adult I had never been a cat person. I liked them well enough, but never really wanted one of my own. My (then) fiance, now husband, had mentioned getting one several times when we first moved in together, always to be shot down by me. It was always too much work, too much responsibility. And the expense of pet ownership was overwhelming! So we were cat-less, enjoying life without hairballs or litter boxes. Until last June.

I still cannot tell you what made me decide to bring these two furballs into my life. Yes, they were meant for my father, but I don't even think I was home from the yard sale before I knew that they were with me to stay. My Boots, my Bruin; I cannot imagine my life without them now. There are the little changes that have come with having kitties - I sleep curled up on my side now, not spread out, because the kitties take up too much room on the bed. PetSmart is a new favorite store. And I keep vinegar on hand at all times for those days when my cat thinks it is 100% okay to pee in the hamper. Little changes, things I barely notice. Then there are the big changes....

Boots & Bruin, inspecting
a new toy
I have always been a coupon person, so the day the kitties came home I began looking online for deals and coupons. Though I found a good amount, I realized there were only one or two sites really dedicated to finding pet deals. Instead I had to sift through other sites, keeping an eagle eye out for that mention about Fancy Feast and Science Diet. That is how Four Paw Savings, and my presence in the blogging world, began. And I love it! Through it I have learned so much, met so many people, and gotten involved in so many great causes (like this one!). Now instead of watching TV when I have nothing else to do, I work on my blog. I research. I write, delete, then write again. I read about blogging, and ways to make it better. I teach myself basic HTML. And I read LOTS of other pet blogs. Without my babies I never would have entered into this world, would not be writing this now, and would have no idea that causes like Blog the Change even existed.

Boots, the feline face
of Four Paw Savings
I run a pet savings blog, so when there is a super deal, I hear about it. It did not take me very long to realize that 1.) I was able to get tons of pet food for super cheap (most of it I didn't need), and 2.) that many people who really needed these deals knew nothing about them. I began to wonder if there were such things as "pet food banks." Just like the people food banks, but with pet food. I was excited to discover that yes, there were indeed pet food banks, but that sadly none existed near me. Instead those living in my area, when unable to feed their pets are forced to surrender them to shelters, or *gasp!* abandon them on the streets. That was all it took for me. Last November I contacted a local food bank run through a church in town, told them my idea, and they now distribute pet food to local families in need, as well as seniors who are struggling to feed their furry companions. The pet food is currently mostly donated by me and people I know, but it is a start. Someday I hope to have a "real" pet food bank, one that requires a storage facility and has volunteers and donation bins and cool t-shirts that say "STAFF" on them. It is a dream, a goal, a future endeavor that without my kitties I never would have even known was possible.

Bruin, my pretty girl
It is incredible to think about how much my life has changed in less than a year, all because I took in two kitties out of the hot sun one day at a yard sale. I love my life with them. They make me so happy, and helped fill a life that I never realized was so empty. My husband loves them too, often texting me during the day that he misses the kitties while at work. For someone who was not a cat person a year ago, I certainly spend much of my life around them. I now regularly volunteer with an adoption center, donate food to local shelters, maintain Four Paw Savings, and even one day hope to have a sanctuary for all those wonderful kitties who are considered "unadoptable" because of medical status (such as FIV/FIL) or special needs. For a 20-something year old who still had no clue what she wanted from life a year ago, I think I have certainly found my place.

Want to start your own pet food bank? Here are some great links to get you started:
Animal Shelter Tips
Save Our Pets Food Banks
Pikes Peak Pet Pantry

I am going to ask that all of you who read this blog and use this deals, please take some of them and donate the products to either a local shelter or rescue group. There are many great deals to grab, even free ones, and all it takes is a bit of your time. If you think that requesting a free sample of dog food to donate is not worth it, please realize that every little bit helps. Those small donations add up to make a really big difference. Need a place to start? Check out the "freebie" tag on this site. 

(This post was written as a part of "Blog the Change")