THE BLOG
06/29/2009 05:12 am ET Updated Nov 17, 2011

Lucky's Summer Lovin' BBQ Do's and Don'ts!

Lucky and I hope you had a fantastic Memorial Day that was full of festive company and yummy BBQ food (veggie for me and non-veggie for Lucky) to kick the summer season 2009 off right! We have put together some great tips for your next BBQ extravaganza! Gathering your family, friends, and canine pals for a summer cookouts can be one of the best ways to celebrate the summer, but it is good to know some of the "Dos and Don'ts" to have a safe BBQ experience without any mishaps. Here are Lucky's top ten tips featuring her favorite summer BBQ Dos & Don'ts that she just had to share with you!

BBQ Dos

1. Hamburgers and Hot Dogs: Giving in to those begging puppy dog eyes with grilled meat treats is fine -- just as long as it's in small amounts. Be careful not to upset your pup's sensitive tummy with overfeeding or too many scraps! And absolutely no baked beans with those dogs (referring to hot dogs) -- for so many reasons -- I don't know where to begin.

BBQ Don'ts

2. Onions/Garlic: Definitely hold off on this veggie and herb (Lucky might shed a tear over the entire concept)! Onions and garlic would not just give Lucky bad breath, but on burgers, hot dogs, or kabobs, are toxic to both dogs and cats and can cause Heinz (not talking the ketchup condiment here) body anemia.

3. Tomatoes: A big - No! This veggie contains Atropine that causes dilated pupils, tremors and an irregular heartbeat. The highest concentration of atropine is found in the leaves and stems of tomato plants.

4. Chocolate: This might be truly my one scrumptious weakness but this treat is not a dog's best friend. Chocolate contains Theobromine, a stimulant found in the cocoa bean that is harmful to your dog and causes unpleasant, and dangerous, side effects.

5. Salt: Hold off on the salt and spice! Giving your dog too many salty snacks (i.e.: potato chips or pickles) can lead to some dogs drinking too much water. Overdrinking can lead a to a dangerous, and sometimes fatal, condition called bloat in which the dog's stomach gets too full and can twist or rupture. So hold off on the snacks and keep an eye on how much your mutt drinks throughout the day.

6. Macadamia Nuts: You'd be nutty to slip your dog a nut or two! Aloha, Macadamia nuts have been known to cause muscular weakness, tremors, bladder stones, and severe illness in dogs. In fact, most nuts are a no-go for dogs so best to keep all types away from your pup.

7. Grapes: Healthy for you, highly dangerous for your pup! This innocent snack, believe it or not, can lead to kidney failure in your pet!

8. Sweeteners/Sugar: Don't give into your dog's sweet tooth, because sugar can release insulin and lead to liver failure!

9. BBQ Chicken: Avoid giving your dog bones of any kind, because if eaten they can splinter and harm a pet's internal organs! When you just can't help but give in, simply pull the meat off the bone and only give a small amount at a time!

10. Keep the alcohol away from your dog! Though a Bloodhound Mary or a Dachsund Daiquiri might sound nice, alcohol and dogs do not mix! This seems like an obvious summer "BBQ Don't", but I have caught Lucky trying to sneak a sip poolside! Keep your drinks above paws' reach, no need to see exactly how much trouble your stumbling pup might find. Not to mention the severe health risks associated with alcohol consumption in animals.

Ensuring your pup avoids foods such as the above-mentioned will help ensure a fun, safe, and satiating summer for the both of you! We're not trying to say that there are no safe ways for your pup to welcome the summer with a little indulgence. For a variety of safe and delicious (for your pup anyway) summertime treats, check out petsmart.com and go to the "Treats and Biscuits" section. Trust me, your dog will thank you! For more information about your pet's health and safety, please visit www.animalfair.com.

Lucky and I spent some time chatting it up with the famous red carpet talk show queen, Joan Rivers, who was host to Randy Jones' book party for the release of his new book, The Richest Man In Town: The Twelve Commandments to Wealth! Our conversation included talk about Joan's much loved pets, her Boston Terrier: Spike and two Norwich Terriers; Veronica, and LuLu. Rivers' claimed her pets are and always will be her biggest fans. And Lucky and I think that Rivers might return the adulation. Maybe Rivers' dogs and her Celebrity Apprentice rival Annie Duke's four dogs might get along better than their owners do? (But then again pets and owners usually share similar personalities.)

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The world witnessed the weekly on-air feud between the poker-playing (sing it Lady Gaga - "My poker face...") champion and the red carpet talk show queen! It was hard to miss (even Lucky barked at the tension in the air)! Things only got more heated when they were the last two standing and battled for Trump's top spot on this season's Celebrity Apprentice! When we asked the newly winning apprentice, Joan Rivers, if Annie Duke were a dog what kind of dog she would be, Joan responded, "A Nazi hound! I call her Annie Deutsch."

Lucky even ran into the man of the hour, Randy Jones, and they talked about his new book. Jones claims that he has the "richest Shitzu in town"! So, maybe his pup can hang at the dog run with Lucky and share some pointers on how to tough out this ruff economic storm. Everyone could use some tips from the big guy himself who was interviewed in the book, multi-billionaire Carl Icahn. Icahn is known for being a hard seller in business (but gets results) and often said, "You want a friend, get a dog." Hopefully, Lucky will befriend this tycoon as we can always benefit from a proven money making tip or two!