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!


This, That and Tiny Furry Sumo Wrestling

It seems the only thing I write about anymore is the Walking Challenge. Which is exciting since today I finished my goal of 30 miles in a month for the first time! So click treat for us on that one, and we still have tomorrow, we might actually get caught up a bit.

We are doing other things around here. Today we took in Charley and Chloe for two weeks, so we are temporarily a four dog household. . . Whew! Four dogs, two of whom are adolescents, really keep you hopping!

Today it looked like it might stop leaking slush from the sky for a bit so I thought we should all go to the park, but of course by the time I had them all loaded into their crates in the car it was blizzarding slush from the sky.

So we drove to the park and I thought I would use the time to work on Chloe’s car fears. After c/t her for quiet and downs and other relaxed behaviors we drove around some more c/t’ing as we went. By that time I felt like it would be cruel to not let them out for a run and the slushing had let up a bit. Of course by the time I had them all out and leashed up it was back to blizzarding so we all got thoroughly soaked.

Can we please have sunshine now?

Magnus’ loves having Chloe here. It’s like a 24/7 little furry sumo wrestling match. Those two are so funny. I have video to put up, but am having technical difficulties so movie making is on hold. If you remember this WW, it pretty much sums it up though.

I am so excited for tomorrow, Maizey starts her Clicks and Tricks class. I’m not even sure what we will be learning, but I know it will be a combo of shaping and luring and. . . tricks, of course!

I decided not announce exactly what the prizes for the Walking Challenge giveaway will be until closer to the giveaway, but I will tell you the prize packages have themes and I think they are all cute as can be! Some of you have already completed posts about the Challenge and I will be posting links on Monday with the “Monday Miles” post.

So other than the new car, the fabulous gift we got from Reilly (great big thanks and a post is in the making), the new washer and dryer (it actually has a cycle for pet beds, could it be anymore perfect for me?), the fact that we might be moving, and about 26,000 other random things I haven’t posted about you are all caught up now! Okay, not quite, but at least I fit in the important things-the dogs!


Hodge Podge of a Post

There has been a lot of fun around here lately. So much fun I’m giving you the cliff notes version.

Sit stays for CDX (Twist is the Sheltie)

On Friday Magnus and I spent the day at an obedience trial. Of course he wasn’t entered, but it was excellent socialization for him and a great chance to learn self control and patience in his crate around lots of other dogs.

It was an especially exciting day since we got to see our friend Twist earn his CDX. Twist is one of my favorite 4legged friends, he has so much character.

Maizey was not left out of the fun since she spent the day with Chloe and Charley.

Last week Magnus got to have his first take your dog to work day where he learned all about riding in the big truck.

One thing that I was very happy about was how well he handled all the loud noises of the truck. I set his mat on the seat in between us and he just laid there and slept while we drove around. I am going to get him a seat belt harness for next time, since there is no way to take a crate.

In other Magnus news he starts Agility For Fun class on thursday night. I am excited, but also nervous-as usual.

Unfortunately we had a funeral to attend in Saturday so we missed Maizey’s Petite Pals class. Next week we’ll be back on schedule with that.

Maizey’s eyes are better, though I know until I have the $900.00 to do the allergy testing they will continue to have problems. She does have some relief with the meds she is on now, so that will have to be good enough for now.

Marie gave us a new crate that Maizey loves. It’s a soft sided travel crate, but it is super light and the best one I’ve had yet. Maizey  loves it so much that I’ve hardly been able to get her out of it since I set it up! Thanks Marie!

Charley and Chloe are staying with us this week, so Magnus is in heaven. He is in love with Chloe and they play so well together. I figure with all four of them to walk I ought to get in some good miles for the Challenge. If you have suggestions for managing a four dog household I would love to hear them!

Well this is a disjointed crazy post, but I wanted to at least update for myself. Don’t give up on our poor neglected blog, I have a big announcement coming with exciting news so you’ll have to keep coming around for that!


Exciting Walking Challenge News

More exciting Walking Challenge business!

We have new 2011 Walking Challenge members! Carrie from All Things Dog Blog found us and joined our Challenge with her two 4legged friends, Tanner and Oliver. Carrie also invited all of her readers to join us and Elizabeth, Cocoa and Oreo also joined us. A huge welcome to them and thanks for sharing our excitement and joining our challenge!

We now have nine people and 22 4legged friends in our challenge! I have gotten to know you all, but I’m going to bite off more than I can probably chew and start a series to highlight each team of walkers in the challenge so we can all get to know each other.

If you want to be featured please email a picture of yourself and short bio of your 4legged friends. It doesn’t have to be anything too much, but names, ages, perhaps how your 4legged friends came into your life and a couple fun facts about how the walking challenge is going for you. It might be your favorite place to walk, or how you get motivated, you could even share what your biggest challenge is in the Walking Challenge. You could let us know what your favorite walk this year has been and why. I would also love to know some training tidbit you do on your walks, this is training blog after all!

As the emails come in I will do my best to post the stories as quick as I can and of course leave links to any of your blogs.

By doing this I hope we can build enthusiasm and support each other even more.

We really are accomplishing a great deal with this challenge. We are 83 days into the year. Some of us are behind, some are ahead and all together we have walked an impressive 396 miles! It’s not too late to get caught up and with warmer weather and longer daylight hours upon us I know we can all do it!

I know there are those of you out there with miles to report, so turn in those miles folks and lets get that total mileage over 400!

A Great Walk
Tonight was one of my favorite walks so far this year!

First Magnus and I walked to the park with Chloe, Charley and my mom. When we got to the park we met Indigo and his family. Indigo is a 4 month old Golden Retriever. He was not only a handsome and big boy but had wonderful manners. After the dogs met and got to know each other Indigo and Magnus got the zoomies.

These were serious puppy zoomies so I was super proud of my crazy boy when he could do a perfect recall, come in for a collar grab and take a break from the crazy fun. I was even more pleasantly surprised when Indigo’s mom said, “You use the same words we use at puppy class!”

I laughed and asked, “Do you train at Calling All Dogs?” They are in Puppy Prep right now and it seems they are doing great. Indigo did fabulous with his gotcha’s and it was thrilling to see someone working with their pup and applying what they learn.

After we got home I couldn’t leave my little girl home so we headed out for another two mile jaunt. She did great, with only one reaction and that at 5 dogs in two yards right next to each other. Even then we got a chance to c/t for reorienting to me and we were able to move on quickly.

These were my best walks this year and I am looking forward to many more!

So there’s my three miles for the day, how ’bout the rest of you? Lets get this walking challenge rockin’!


Real Life Vs. Dog Life

There isn’t much point to this post, so if you are already bored I would quit reading now.

Basically real life is getting to me today. And I really don’t want it to get to me, because tonight is Magnus’ first Agility for Fun class. Shouldn’t I be bursting with excitement?

I think the excitement is in there but it is slightly buried under all the real life that is surrounding me today. I know I say it all the time, but with with my pups snuggled up with me taking naps I have to ask, “Why can’t all life just be about dogs?” I mean they are so smart.

While I waded through real life today you know what they did?

After a yummy Honest Kitchen breakfast they played with each other, got bully’s for break time, then played with Charley and Chloe. Then they all took turns waiting in the crate while we played on the wobble board, the balance disk, and the mini jumps. After that Magnus let me know he was bushed by going into the living room crate and napping while everyone tried on their new boots. And now? Well now they are both snoring away!

"Don't worry crazymomlady I will always be there to smother you better!"

Just typing that makes me feel more peaceful. Dogs are very wise. Although Maizey has been diligently doing her self appointed job of smothering her poor stressed out crazymomlady in face hugs. So I guess her day did have some work in it.

Anyways as I said there really is no point in the post except to remind me to be more like my 4legged friends and let go of what can’t be changed and enjoy what there is to enjoy. How’s that for a 4legged lesson?

And now I am off to cut up treats, yummy hot dog, Zukes, and Yummy Chummies for Magnus class. I might even throw some yam chips in the oven for a post class treat! See I feel better already, sometimes you just have to let real life be real and pay attention to the joy.

And for most of us?

That’s dogs!


Wordless Wednesday: A Tired Puppy is a Happy Puppy


Come Home Soon Momma

It’s that time of year where our crazymommalady flies south for the winter. Of course Charley and Chloe will go too, but they have a message for her from the rest of us:

Come home soon crazymommalady!