Benefits of Using A Camping Lantern

Wherever you may be planning to go in whichever mode of transport, no camping trip can be complete without the existence of a lantern. In the early days of backpacking history, lanterns were traditional and a heavyset burden to carry with you for the whole journey. In today’s time, this basic necessity has been converted into a gas-powered light with glass windows. Although it is still weighty and very sensitive to the touch, it emits a light that will never go out, at least not until the remainder of your journey is over.

Fits Your Needs

Due to advancement in technology, backpackers now have the privilege of getting to choose from a variety of options. Lanterns now come in LED lighting; they can be gas powered or electric powered; travellers may even opt for the still widely available traditional camping lantern that uses a candle to give light. There are lots of different features that fit into the best camping lanterns made for your needs.

Lightweight and Compact

Lanterns with LED lighting enable its users to move flexibly since they are more lightweight and compact in nature. However, they run on batteries and tend to flicker out sooner than other lanterns so it is always advisable to carry an adequate number of extra batteries. Also, there are lanterns available with a longer battery life. Other than that, there are no disadvantages. The LED lantern ensures brighter and more powerful light than most types of light sources. In fact, the only type that produces more light intensity is a fuel-burning lantern.

High Light Intensity

Fuel burning lanterns run on propane and therefore, do not require any kind of batteries to operate. They only need a sufficient amount of fuel in hand and they are good to go. Another advantage of using this camping lantern is that they are not compromised by any kind of weather conditions. You could be stuck in rain but your lantern will work just fine despite the water.


If you are looking for a light source that does not keep your hands busy like the LED and propane camping lanterns tend to do, you may choose to get a headlamp. More of a form of a flashlight, these lanterns may be strapped to the top of your head, allowing you to work at night without having to worry about a lack of light.


An additional advantage to the flexibility is that headlamps are also reasonably cheap in terms of price. However, relying on only headlamps is not suitable and backpackers are advised to carry at least one more type of camping lantern that is more durable and offers more light intensity.

The market today is filled with lanterns of all shapes and quality. The few options that have been discussed above are only some of the more popular ones. Having a camping lantern is essential since there is no substitute for the service it provides. However, it is imperative to take note of the conditions you may be facing in your journey in order to purchase a lantern that is suitable to your needs.


Benefits of Each Type of Camping Lantern


The Best Personal Protection Dogs

“Guard dogs” is too general a term to be definitive. True guard dogs often guard property and patrol premises, like “sentry dogs,” but they don’t make good family pets. An “attack dog,” a genuine “man stopper,” is a potential killer that should be trained by professionals, for professionals, like police.

What most people want when they speak of a guard dog is a dog that will act as “personal protection,” that is, a dog that will give a warning bark and display a threatening posture.

If you simply want a warning barker, an “alarm dog” may be enough for you. Most dogs are natural barkers; they will sound a warning bark at most strangers. Even small dogs make good alarm dogs, but they won’t try to “protect” you. From the Affenpinscher to the Yorkie, size doesn’t matter for this job.

Beyond simply watching and barking, a dog that acts as a “threat dog” will offer personal protection with physical threats to intruders. A professional should train these dogs when they are about six months old. A natural guard dog has better judgment than an attack-trained dog, which can be quite dangerous and more of a liability than an asset. Some breeds are better choices for family protection.

Protection Dogs aka “Threat Dogs”

Most people want a “protection dog” that will defend its family by jumping, snarling, seizing or chasing – not biting, seriously injuring or killing. The following breeds have shown themselves to be great guardians and protectors. Most can also make wonderful family pets – with proper training and with experienced dog owners who aren’t intimidated by their size and power.

Boxers are fine protectors. These dogs are fun-loving with adults and children, although wary of strangers. This breed seems to be able to read peoples’ characters and intentions. They are usually great with kids. Some people adore boxers, but they will tell you this breed tend to be gassy and might not make good bedroom or TV viewing companions.

Doberman Pinschers have been selectively bred for protection and will instinctively protect their human pack members. A Dobie will alert his master of suspicious activity, but he is also willing-and-able to use his teeth in defense. Dobermans are also a good choice for guard and Schutzhund trainers who teach attack training.

These dogs respond well to love and praise, but not heavy-handed discipline. Some are sweet and submissive, and good with children and other pets if raised with them, but they can be quite aggressive with other dogs.

I worked with several dog trainers as a dog rescuer. Two trainers adopted Dobermans (sisters) that had been puppy mill dogs, which they had rescued. Both dogs snarled at me; both trainers warned me “not to touch her toy” and “not to go near her food while she was eating” (Do I look like an idiot?). If you love Dobies, you had better be an experienced dog owner and very experienced at playing the pack leader.

German Shepherds are probably the American “poster dogs” as protectors/guardians. Everyone knows what a Shepherd looks like. (Remember Rin Tin Tin?) These (well-bred) dogs make fine pets and are great with kids. They are intelligent, loyal and alert.

Giant Schnauzers make great police and military dogs, and they are well respected by Europeans. These dogs are becoming more popular in the U.S., since they have such a distinguished look (with eyebrows and beards), and they make good family pets. They must be socialized early to children, strangers and other pets. Some are very aggressive.

Great Danes make great guard dogs just by standing still and barking. Well-bred, well-trained Danes make great family pets. They can deter the unwanted with a look.

These dogs are eager to please, easy-going, and friendly, but often act shy towards strangers. These dogs do not respond well to heavy-handed treatment, and should not be encouraged to play tug-of-war games. Some are heavy droolers. They were used in Germany to hunt wild boar.

I visited the home of a Dane rescuer who owned (and fostered) four dogs at a time. She also had three young children. While we were sitting at the table, the dogs surrounded us, sitting and looking at us from eye-level. When one got overly excited, the owner made her leave us and sit on the other side of a glass door; once she calmed down she was allowed to re-join the group.

This was one eye-opening experience into the world of dogs as well-behaved companions, with a true pack leader that kept boundaries and limitations. These dogs deserve no less.

Mastiffs are one of the most intimidating breeds of dogs because of sheer size, up to 200 pounds and more. Mastiffs don’t give warning barks; they simply knock down intruders and pin them to the ground.

They love children and get along well with other animals. They are usually friendly-but-reserved with strangers.

I re-homed two mastiffs to experienced dog owners who showed no fear and knew what they were doing. Most of these dogs are droolers. Be ready to deal with that trait. These dogs have only to look at you to make you freeze in your tracks. These are not for inexperienced dog owners.

Rottweilers are another popular breed, but, perhaps, they have been over bred. A well-trained Rottie can be a wonderful protector/guardian, but these dogs are known for a high-bite rate so owners really should know what they’re getting. They can be an insurance liability. They cannot always be trusted with other dogs or cats.

Cesar Millan, the “Dog Whisperer,” bestows great praise on these dogs as a powerful breed that needs a strong pack leader. Cesar says he always keeps a few Rotties on hand, and he knows his family will be safe until he gets back from his travels.

Gopetsamerica.com also “recommends” Airedale Terriers, American Bulldogs, Beaucerons, Belgian Malinois Sheepdogs, Bouvier des Flandres, Briards, Chows, and the Siberian Husky as other guard dog possibilities.

The Siberian Husky usually adores children and may do OK with other dogs, but not so well with cats.

My neighbor had a Husky, which was one intimidating dog, with the easily-recognizable wolf face. When she divorced, she kept the dog. Without the male “pack leader,” Zona became so protective of her that she couldn’t have visitors in, and the borough would make her take him indoors before they would read the outside water meter. Ditto for the gas man.

Zona was contained by an “invisible” electric fence, which worked great as long as his collar-batteries worked. But people didn’t know he was “contained,” and they didn’t want to come to our in-home shop because he appeared to be loose. We probably lost some customers over that, but we also felt a bit “protected” because few intruders would attempt to enter our house either, with him just a few feet from the invisible property line.

I have to disagree with the Gopetsamerica.com Chow Chow recommendation — for most families. Two vets told me Chows were simply too unpredictable for most people, and neither vet “trusted” the breed completely. One vet said he usually muzzled Chows before working on them. Again, it seems to be a problem with over-breeding.

The Chow is quiet and independent, a one-person dog. It will tolerate children if raised with them, “but will not be playful.”

I re-homed one purebred Chow. The original owner was confident around the dog and so were her adult girls. I watched them interact easily with the dog and even kiss it on the face. It took two tries to find the right home. The first adopter lost confidence and became fearful, which the dog sensed. Ultimately, I found a home with a groomer who had experience and confidence with the breed.

Anyone looking for a protection/guard dog can begin with the above list. As always, the background, training, and socialization of the dogs involved are important in making decisions. I dealt with rescued dogs that had lived with families, but needed to be re-homed through no fault of their own.

If you want a purebred, the onus falls on the breeder to be good, reliable, and trustworthy. Most reputable dog breeders adore their dogs and do right by them. Try to meet the “parent” dogs; have the whole family interact with the dog of your choice; and introduce your other dogs to the potential newcomer. If you’re a cat owner, you should inquire about how an adult dog reacts around cats. Puppies often adapt better to cats – and children – as home companions by growing up with them.

Make sure all dogs and family members get along before taking the dog to its permanent home. It does not usually work out if the “man of the house” can play the alpha dog and his wife can’t. It can become a choice between wife or dog.

If you’re choosing a protection dog, do your homework on the breed; plan to get the dog some basic obedience training; and make sure you can properly exercise and care for a powerful breed. You should have a great 10 to 15 years together if you’re all properly prepared to be the pack leaders.

How to Care for Dogs with Hip and Joint Problems

Hip and joint problems in dogs, especially large breed dogs are unfortunately, all too common. As a proud “mommy” to Jeff, a robust gentle of a giant St. Bernard dog and Meadow, a stunningly sweet Newfoundland dog, I have experienced the trials and tribulations of caring for dogs with hip and joint problems. Also, as a registered nurse, I am all too familiar with with damaging effects hip and joint problems can cause to my patients. Dogs experience the same pain and disability from these conditions, just as humans do. The physiology and treatments are very similar as well. Degenerative joint disease, osteoarthritis, and hip dysplasia are painful diseases that can cause limitation in a dog’s ability to move and function normally without experiencing pain. According to the book “Your Older Dog”, by Jean Callahan and Ann Marie Manning, additional symptoms of osteoarthritis can be stiffness, mild pain when the affected joint is touched and licking the affected joint. In addition to pain, other symptoms include lameness, which means that your dog cannot use his legs properly and difficulty rising.

I am all too familiar with how to care for dogs with hip and joint problems, as I have much experience caring for my own giant breed dogs afflicted with hip and joint problems. One morning I was awakened to an unfamiliar sound. It almost sounded like a baby crying. Since my daughter is almost 15, and we have no other babies in the house, I investigated further. Nothing was amiss until I approached my angelic Newfoundland dog, Meadow. As she tried to get up to greet me, she let out the saddest whimpering sound I ever heard, which devastated me. “What is it, Meadow Bear?” I asked. Anyone who is a dog owner will tell you that they talk to their dogs! Her spunkiness and enthusiasm where gone. She did perk up, however, when I asked her if she wanted to go for a ride. Now she wasn’t her usual exuberant self anticipating the car ride, because she was in so much pain, but I did get a rise out of her and she slowly tagged along and gingerly claimed her seat (with our help) in the car. Little did she know, she was on her way to the vet.

After the examination, which included a thorough hands on exam and x-rays, it was determined that Meadow, in all probability was suffering from osteoarthritis, a degenerative disease that affects the hip and joints. According to the vet at the VCA Animal Hospital, Meadow’s prognosis was excellent due to effective treatments that were available in the care of dogs with hip and joint problems. One of the treatments was to give our dog Rimadyl, a 24 hour non-steroidal anti inflammatory (NSAID) that is given once a day. Anti-inflammatory medications are also the gold standard when it comes to treating humans with hip and joint diseases as well, as I have seen in my years of seeing arthritic patients at the hospital every day. Meadow would be taking her Rimadyl for pain, stiffness and inflammation of her hip and joints, but the vet reminded me that the medication was not without side effects. I would call the VCA Animal Hospital if my dog experienced black or tarry stools, which can indicate internal bleeding, a distressing adverse reaction of anti-inflammatory medications, vomiting blood, difficulty breathing, swelling of her lips, tongue or face and loss of appetite. Fortunately, these symptoms are rare.

I also learned from the vet at the VCA Animal Hospital that they are having success with certain supplements when it comes to how to care for dogs with hip and joint problems. Certain supplements such as Glucosamine and Chondroitin are proving beneficial to the cartilage and joints of dogs. The dosage of these supplements is based on the dog’s body weight. Diet also plays an important role in how to care for dogs with hip and joint problems. Dog food containing Omega 3 fatty acids has shown to be effective in reducing the inflammatory process. Massage therapy also has its benefits when it comes to how to care for dogs with hip and joint problems. The benefits of massage are the same whether the recipient of the massage is a dog or a human. Some benefits of massage include increase of blood flow to the affected area and decreasing pain and stiffness that is all to common in dogs with hip and joint problems. The bed the dog sleeps on also can help him relieve any joint pain. Going for orthopedic dog beds, usually with thick foam helps relieves pressure on specific joints for the dog. You can read orthopedic dog bed reviews on ExpertPaws.com

Another very important component in the care and treatment of dogs with hip and joint problems is exercise. This may seem contradictory at first, since one of the most common symptoms of dogs with hip and joint problems is exercise intolerance. It is important to start exercising the dog slowly, but consistently. Exercise improves flexibility, decreases pain, and improves blood flow. It also maintains weight. Excessive weight on dogs puts stress and strain on their already painful hips and joints. Maintaining a normal weight for their breed can even prevent dogs from getting hip and joint problems in the first place. Too many calories and overfeeding a dog can cause them to grow rapidly which in itself is a risk factor for hip problems and osteoarthritis, especially in large dog breeds. It is important to stop exercising your dog if he or she looks like she is in pain and then call the vet right away.

Thankfully, my dog Meadow is much better now. She finished her prescription of Rimadyl and has been eating dog food that contains Omega 3 fatty acids, Glucosamine and Chondroitin, which I believe, has helped her hip and joint problems improve. She’s back to her old self again. As for Jeff, our very own “Beethoven”, he thankfully remains free from hip and joint problems at this time, although he is starting to slow down slightly as he gets older. I will continue to monitor him for any problems with his hips and joints though, and take him to the vet at the first sign of anything amiss. He also has started his own exercise and diet regime in hopes of preventing any future hip and joint problems that might come his way. We also pencil him in regularly for his massages.

Searching For Dog Beds for Big Dogs

If you have furry friends running around the house by day, chances are they are also taking over your bed at night. Although it may seem cute and affectionate, don’t let your dogs get too cozy and accustomed to sharing your bed. Pet owners are prone to having difficulties sleeping because of a dog that refuse to get out of their beds, particularly big stubborn ones. Buying dog beds for big dogs is a very important investment not only because it can give you a peaceful slumber, most importantly, it provides a number of health benefits for your furry pals.


Smelly Dog Issues

If you have an especially large dog, you can’t expect it to sit at a corner all day. Big dogs are robust, playful, and full of energy so they will always go out and play. Look forward to allergens, wet dog smells, dusts, and mud stains if you allow your dogs take over your bed. Fortunately, there are cedar filled dog beds for big dogs, especially made for your lively, carefree pets. These types of beds help keep your dog’s body odor at bay. However, if your dogs are a little too sensitive to cedar, you can opt for a 100% waterproof Nanopore fabric bed cover, which also serves as a barrier against mites and fleas. Likewise, there are also environmentally friendly dog beds made of organic cotton and fleece if you are an earth-conscious individual.

Your Dogs Need Space

Dogs also want some alone time at some place they can always come back to, just as you do. Corner dog beds for big dogs are a great option to make most of unused space, especially when the room is a little undersized.

Big Dogs Have Big Needs

Big dogs have big hearts, and despite their size, they are the gentlest of dogs. Unfortunately, big dogs live shorter and are more susceptible to certain health concerns such as arthritis, joint pains, hip and elbow dysplasia, etc. It is advisable that you buy high quality orthopedic dog beds for big dogs, particularly for the elderly ones. Orthopedic beds have special features that will suit dogs with specific needs. These beds in general are thick and very comfortable. An orthopedic memory foam bed is a popular choice for elderly dogs because its foam conforms to your dog’s shape while providing optimum support and comfort.

Relieves Anxious Dogs

Big dogs also get scared and restless from time to time, no matter how fierce they appear to be. Anxious dogs can find relief when they have their own secured place to run off to. Nesting beds and cave beds are two good choices: these types of beds help your dog feel secure as it envelops your dog with warmth, comfort, and privacy. Dogs just love the feeling of burying themselves.


You have to be a little more meticulous when buying dog beds for big dogs. Big dogs can be a little more destructive compared to smaller breeds, especially when they get bored. It is very important that you select a high quality dog bed, considering how much your pet spends time there. Aside from taking note of your dogs’ personalities and specific needs, you also have to remind yourself that dog beds for big dogs takes up more space in your house.