Off the Shelf
In August, just in time for National Dog Day; and then in October, in honor of National Pit Bull Awareness Day; and finally for Giving Tuesday in November, sporty women’s shoe brand Bzees hit up Bay Woof about its charity initiative, Fetching Hope, and its partnership with dog walking app WoofTrax to get humans to walk more with their dogs.
The shoe company sponsored the WoofTrax’s mobile app and agreed to donate $5 per item purchased to go toward the shelter or rescue app users designated on the app to support shelters throughout the United States, a promotion that ended Dec. 31.
What also caught my attention was that Bzees has a chief canine officer, Oliver, a pit bull rescue who can bee seen on the website, Bzees.com, and has been a loyal companion to Bzees for six years. He belongs to Lori McDermid, Bzees vice president, and serves as the company shoe model, sometimes displaying the soft, squish-able shoes in his mouth with a big, goofy grin. Oliver is also a pit bull community ambassador for his breed as well as for adoption and fostering at Oliver’s ClubHouse on Facebook.
So I said sure to testing out a pair of something suitable for dog walking: the women’s Balance slip on ($69). Who can resist come-ons like “cloud technology” and “ultra lightweight” anyway?
So here is the lowdown: They’re like sneakers to knock around in but a little more stylish. I have bad bunions and use custom orthotics in all my shoes, including running shoes, barn boots, and dress and/or office shoes. Stiff shoes, really stiff shoes, work best for me. But happily I can wear these Bzees for long periods and be pain free, and that includes standing on my feet and doing moderate walking.
I like their side zips and that they are made of stretchy Neoprene-like fabric with a comfy footbed, and they are surprisingly supportive. And I like the way they look, too, with a shiny reinforced toe.
They are easy to slip on first thing in the morning for a quick pee-and-poop circuit around the block with Cody, and I find myself carrying them in my work bag that accompanies me from home to work to car to barn and back to home again. Additionally, I have to go outside to reach my laundry room, so the Bzees have become my shoes of choice for that task, especially in the rainy season. And when they get dirty (so far, there has been no stink), I can just toss them in the washer. Now that’s a pair of shoes I can get behind.
Main article photo by: Courtesy Bzeees