After getting all my notes together and all the pictures, I wanted to finally have a sit down and tell you about my trip to BarkWorld.

First meet Elise the traveling catnip shrimpie, she started her travels way back in May when I went to BlogPaws. Here she is in my purse ready to go

Elise the traveling catnip shrimpie

Elise the traveling catnip shrimpie ready to go to BarkWorld

My husband and I were fortunate enough to be able to drive to Atlanta, GA for BarkWorld. 

Elise the catnip shrimpie posing

Elise the catnip shrimpie posing

It took us about 8 hours to get there and I had an extra day to rest up and get ready for my speed dating with a few of the pet brands that would be there. Speed dating is on its fourth year and I loved the concept. You get 6-7 minutes with each brand to tell them who you are, what you do and they get to explain to you who they are and what they do.

Here was my speed dating list

Speed dating list for BarkWorld 2013

Speed dating list for BarkWorld 2013

I was a bundle of nerves as I had talked to pet brands before at BlogPaws while visiting booths and such, but I never had the experience of sitting down at a table and explaining what the blog is about and what I would like to do in the future with it. I had a great time, nearly lost my voice a few times with all the talking, but I got to talk to a newer company called Nourish the heart, they make dog shampoo and for every ounce purchased, they will donate an ounce to a local shelter. They were at one of the sessions and showed a wonderful presentation of the before and after photos of shelter dogs washed with their product.

I also got to speak with a representative from Best Friends Pet Care, they are in 18 states at the moment and one of the locations they have is at DisneyWorld. I’ve seen the signs driving down there to visit, so it was great to talk to them a bit to find out about their facilities and what they do.

Best Friends Pet Care Logo

Best Friends Pet Care Logo

I attended some great sessions and had some great food (yes, I have to talk about food).

I really enjoyed the Cat Blogger to Dog Blogger Session, we got a bit off-track in the conversation, but I liked the concept of the session as it was to facilitate learning about what the other blogger does and working together towards the same goal.

I attended a Roundtable Session where we talked about Image Sharing, if everyone shares the same image on the same social media or if they use them differently and what would drive traffic to the blog. The most important thing I got from it was to title every picture so that it is searchable. So you will notice that posts from the past few days have been titled. In that session there was a discussion about using hashtags, searching for a specific hashtag you want to use before just using it as it may be linked to some questionable content.

I got to meet may dog bloggers doing the expo and one of them (Prudence’s mom Miss Theresa)  was nice enough to explain how to use Pinterest for the blog. Once I get that going, I will be sharing the link.

I was lucky enough to get into a session where Victoria Stilwell from It’s Me or the Dog did a presentation on how her idea to help people understand how to train their dogs, to her new brand Positively. She spoke in detail about connecting with people, her books and how positive reinforcement works so much better than negative reinforcement. There was a book signing and she got to chat with some of the people who attended the sessions.

Many of the highlights of the expo was getting to talk to brands, fellow bloggers, pet the dogs, see some kittens, exchange business cards, take pictures, eat and take in as much information as I could.

Here are some of the pet celebrities (and their people) I got to meet:

Carma Poodale – I saw her on the second day and every time she saw me she had to pull her mom over to get head pets and compliments.

Pepper Pom – what a cutie!

Gizzmo  – it was nice to meet a fellow Floridan

Flat Brian, the Hat and Dad – I learned so much thank you!

Flat Brian

Flat Brian from Brian’s Home

Prudence’s mom Miss Theresa – Thank you so much for teaching me Pinterest.

Oz – Yes.. Oz the great and powerful.. and adorable!

Linus – what a cutie!

Liza & Lizzie – They are brand new to the online pet community, so give them a big welcome.

Flat Dakota & Flat Cody – What an awesome lady, how she puts up with me I will never know.

McGrady – I was amazed by his tricks at the opening night reception.

Sugar – what a beautiful dog.. I adored her little protective purple booties

and I got to meet a non-pet celebrity quite by accident, the wonderfully talented Miss Bethany from Pet Portraits by Bethany.

I want to thank BarkWorld for the expo and all the goodies. Petco has released their Star Wars brand of pet toys, so take a look.

I grabbed some extra goodies for dogs to put in my auction that starts on the 10th. Please stop by and check out the auction and share, all proceeds will go towards Pet Guards Angels. Here’s a sneak peek

Dog Grab Bag

There are 3 dog grab bags up for auction, the auction will benefit Pet Guards Angels.

My friend and fellow blogger Miss Felissa from Two Little Cavaliers let me see the mama cat and kittens she is fostering. I will do a post about them when they are ready to be adopted, but for now, here’s a sneak peek at them

Mama Cat with four kittens

Mama Cat with four kittens, 2 orange tabbies, 1 calico and 1 gray fuzzy with stripes

Aren’t they precious? Okay.. here’s another picture because I just can’t resist such cuteness
2013-08-23 12.37.53

I had a great time at BarkWorld and plan to go again, for those interested, the expo will be held in Atlanta from Oct 20-Nov 1 next year. I hope to see you there.

I would highly recommend checking out the website to see what sessions have happened, liking their Facebook page and downloading the app when the time gets closer as it was very handy to have during the expo.

For those who are going for the first time, I’ve complied a small list of things to bring

Pen & paper for making notes during sessions

Business cards & a plastic baggie to keep the ones you get together

Mini post-it notes to make notes to stick to the business cards for follow up emails or potential guest posts/topics

Smart phone/ipad/laptop – the Barkworld app is extremely handy and I got email reminders for the events I signed up for.