Our Favorite Treat Dispensing Toys

Maizey loves the Tricky Treat Ball

We love treat dispensing toys. They make feeding time into a game, giving the pups a mental workout and a lot of fun. We love them so much my dogs rarely eat out of bowls. Today I started them both on their fall time cleanse and it’s a sort of gooey liquid that doesn’t lend itself to toys. I also give them a squirt of fish oil once a day and that also makes a mess of their toys and my floors. So this morning I fed them in bowls and they both looked at me like, “MOM! What’s this and where’s my toy?? This is bo-oring!!” So tonight we went back to toys.

The Tricky Treat Ball is definitely their favorite. I brought it home for Magnus, but Maizey is actually the one who loves it the most. It’s a giant, bright orange ball with a big hole in it. I thought it would never work, but with the way the hole is shaped it only spits our two or three pieces of kibble at a time. The dogs have to roll it a certain way to get the food out. They love it.

Tied for favorite is what we affectionately call the bottle monkey. It’s a soft monkey with a plastic water bottle in it. I turned the bottle around so the spout sticks out. I stuff it with kibble, smash the top and the dogs have to toss it around to get the food out. Charley used to be pickiest eater and bottle monkey’s cured him. He loves dinner time now!

The bottle monkey runs a close second

I’d rate the Tug-A-Jug a super genius toy. The treats only come out when they’re at the end rope end of the toy and the rope gets pulled out. Magnus loves it, but he’ll bring it to me after a while with a look like, “This thing’s broken again, please make it give me a treat!” It just makes Maizey mad and she tends to take a wack it as hard as she can over and over until it gives up it’s goods attitude. It’s funny, but I don’t let her have it much. It’s a good treat toy, but not great for feeding out of.

Of course we love the old faithful Kong. At work one of our customers asked me how many she should have. I just laughed and said I’m sure people survived with one but I probably have a dozen of all shapes and sizes. My favorite thing to do with a Kong is make a Kong lasagna. Start with kibble then layer canned food, banana, or something else gooey, another layer of kibble, etc. I will seal it with some peanut butter, but I try to keep the peanut better to a minimum since it’s so high in fat. Don’t forget to freeze it to up the difficulty level.

We also love the Hol-ee Roller, though you have to get very big treats to make it a challenge. What I mostly love it for is a bully holder. You never heard of a bully holder? That’s cause I’m usually the bully holder and trust me I don’t love holding onto a smelly bully for Magnus to slobber all over me. So weave a bully through a couple of the holes and voilà! Instant bully holder.

"This is soooooo gooood!"

"Hol-ee Roller? More like Holy bully holder!"

And finally our most low tech food dispensing toy, the two liter bottle. It’s noisy, especially on the hard wood and if a dog could get any plastic off of this I would never let them have it, but mine don’t have a problem with that and they love it. I drink tons of carbonated water instead of soda and I just take one of my two liters stuff some kibble in it and smash the spout end flat. It’s good for at least 15 minutes of good clean fun!

I was not paid for these reviews, just sharing some of our fav’s and now I want o hear from you. What are your dogs favorite toys?

If you want to check out more awesome dog products Crystal did a great post about her favorite  dog products.

I still think the dogs need to eat out of bowls sometimes, but I know they much prefer all of their toys. If at this point you’re thinking how spoiled my dogs are, you’re right, but a very wise woman once told me, “spoiled is just well loved.” She was right!


Cavalier (or Any Other Breed) Query: Should a Puppy Have This Many Teeth?

This post was supposed to be about Maizey’s eyes, but that is a subject with too many big words for me today. Crazymomlady has a crazy cold and is generally just dragging.

Instead I am begging the wisdom of you’re expertise. . . again.

I have been watching for Magnus big boy teeth to come in.

"I don't have too many teeth, do I?"

Watching. . .

And watching. . .

Every day checking if his sharp little shark teeth were starting to fall out.

Then today I did our daily check and. . .

Ackk! He has two sets of teeth! Almost all his grownup teeth are coming in! One set of teeth was plenty on Magnus the Destroyer, two is just overkill.

So the query: How do you help a puppy through teething time?

I seem to remember that Maizey’s teeth just fell out on their own. I even remember one that fell out in my hand. I wish I had been blogging back then so I had better records. But what I don’t remember is all of her teeth coming in at once before her other teeth fell out.

I am also worried that if his baby teeth don’t fall out then his bite will get messed up. Cavaliers tend to have bad teeth already and a messed up bite can cause more problems.

Magnus eats out of Kongs, sometimes frozen, sometimes not. They get about one marrow bone a week. He eats out of those too. They get Bully’s to chew and right now we have beef trachea, the chewie from the heavens.

"I think all my teeths are cool!"

He has ropes and tugs,some made out of fleece, one out of sisal twine, which he loves. Occassionally they get a rawhide. Right now they have been getting frozen and dried yam chews, another gift from the dog treat gods.

So what else can I do to help this process along? How do you keep your pups comfy when all their teeth come in at once? That just can’t feel good. Do you have a chewy that works the best for teething?

While we are on the subject of teeth how about keeping the big boy, or girl, teeth clean for life? What are your tricks of the trade for that?

Magnus thinks having two sets of teeth would be great, but I’m not so thrilled with the idea so please please chime in with whatever comes to mind!


4Legged Food and 4Legged Travel

A post of miscellany.

Miscellaneous item 1: Dog food I could really do a series on our dog food adventures, but this bit will have to do for now. Due to a very long story involving Meeka developing a miserable skin allergy that took us a year and half plus to get soothed down, I am quite paranoid and cautious when it comes to dog food.

I supplement kibble with things they need at the time, but the base is California Natural Herring and Sweet Potato. Meeka can have NO turkey, lamb, or chicken.

California Natural is a Natura product. However, recently Natura sold out (wether literally or not remains to be seen) to Proctor and Gamble. Personally I am not thrilled with this. Having already experienced one disaster due to dog food company changes thinking of my food going “corporate”, so to speak, doesn’t thrill me.

So when I picked up dog food yesterday I asked what they knew about quality, plant, source product and other changes that may have happened. I was happy to hear that as far as the retailer knows Natura’s contracts for all source products and their plant is still under contract until the end of the year. So for now things should be staying stable. As for later that will have to wait and see.

Miscellaneous item 2: Traveling I had all these good intentions to leave posts ready to publish while we are gone these next 10 days or so, but that just doesn’t seem to be happening. Man, traveling is a lot of work!

So I may be able to check in once while we are gone, but overall I guess I will be on a blogging hiatus. But certainly not a training hiatus. There should be plenty to work on with many, many challenges for Ricky’s challenge.

"Were ready! Lets go get dirty!"

And lots of play and fun. One thing I am sure Maizey is looking forward to? Swimming and swimming, oh ya and rolling in the dirt to get dry. (sighs and eye rolling from the crazymomlady, it’s my bed the dirty little mutt has to sleep in!)

Things Meeka is looking forward to? Lots of time with the crazymomlady and crazydadman.

Things I am looking forward to? Coming home! (Yeah I know I haven’t even left yet, but thats just the way I am!)