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Product Review – Omega Paw Mouse Pom Pom

The Omega Paw Mouse Pom Pom toy promises hours of fun for your cat with a pom pom ball on a spring and a carpet layer on the base that the cat can pounce on.  It claims that it will become your cat’s “favorite playmate”.

I bought this for Isis and set it down for her to play with.  It sat there for two days without being touched, just looked at and passed by for other toys.  I then put some catnip on it because that normally gets her interested in playing.  Even with that, she wouldn’t go near it.

Finally, about two weeks after I brought it into the house, she started to play with it.  It did not take long for her to kick the majority of the fuzz off the ball on the spring.  As for pouncing on the base carpet, that never happened.  She did try to chew and swallow the carpet though.  After her eating a bit of it and then throwing it back up, I took the toy away and threw it in the garbage.  Luckily the price was such that I didn’t mind wasting that money.

Final verdict: Do not buy this toy.  I think it was more of a health hazard for her than anything else.  She didn’t play with the toy unless I was playing with it and wiggling the spring.  Even then, she didn’t play with it for long, and it ended up losing most of the fuzz (this was after playing with it for maybe a half hour total).

I was very disappointed in this toy and I wrote to the company to tell them what happened and how Isis ate some of the carpeting and threw it back up.  I have yet to hear from them, and I will not get my hopes up that they will respond back.

If after all this you would still like to purchase this toy, it is on sale on wag.com.

Steer clear of this toy!

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Product Review – Petmate 3 Knot Rope Tug

Does your dog love to play tug-o-war?  Do they have more energy than you know what to do with?  The Petmate 3 Knot Rope Tug might be the toy your dog will love.

Sasha is a tug-o-war fanatic.  If we could play all day, every day, she would be in doggie heaven.  Pulling and tugging and growling in a very funny way is fun for her so we tried to oblige.  We first started tying up old rags and towels, but those ended up being destroyed quickly.  Finally we found this toy and it seems to be a hit,

It is a simple concept, cotton fiber ropes tied in knots of various sizes and lengths that seem to be strong and provide hours of fun for her.  The only thing is, we only play tug-o-war with them and let her play with it for only a few minutes after we are done, otherwise she would have the toy chewed in half in no time.  She is a chewer, therefore we need to watch when she plays with this to make sure she doesn’t swallow the cotton fibers.  This is something to consider when buying this toy for your dog.

Final verdict: If your dog loves to tug, this might be a great toy for them.  So far, the toy has lasted Sasha over two months, and when we whip it out to play with her, she goes nuts and spends lots of energy and time on it.  This also means she has a nice LONG nap after playing, which is good to give us some quiet time.  Just watch to make sure none of the cotton fibers end up being swallowed.  The toy is available on wag.com and comes in various sizes for various size dogs.  Make sure to get a rope size big enough so that your dog cannot get the rope or the knotted portions in their back teeth, otherwise they can chew the toy in half and then the toy is no longer useful.  Definitely recommend this toy for tugging dogs!

 

Product Review – Catit Senses Treat Maze

Want to give your cat a challenge to try to get their treats and keep them busy for hours at a time?  Well the Catit Senses Treat Maze may be just the toy for your cat.

Place the treats on different levels of the maze and your cat must reach into holes or on the top to push the treats to the feeder area.  Simple enough, but if the treats are high value for your cat (meaning if they just cannot get enough of the treat), your cat may spend tons of time trying to get the treats out and have fun playing at the same time.

Isis tried this toy and at first, she stopped playing with it and left it alone for a few days.  Then, she ended up spending a better part of a day (off and on) trying to get her treats to eat.  It was really interesting to watch her to see how she was able to get the treats (she was able to pick up some treats with her paws sort of) and move them around and how smart she is!

Final verdict: Your cat may enjoy this, try to interact with them and show them how to work the toy first.  They may try for a bit, and leave it alone for a few days.  If the treats are something they love, that should lure them back to play with the toy. The toy is sturdy and made of good materials and I did not have a problem worrying that it might break, fall over or fall apart.  I would recommend this toy with that as a caution.  It is on sale right now on wag.com.  Try it, your kitty might thank you for it!

Product Review – Bergan Turbo Scratcher Cat Toy

This week’s product review is the Bergan Turbo Scratcher Cat Toy.  It is a blue, round toy, with cardboard in the middle and a track around the outside of it for a ping pong ball to roll around in.

The idea is that if your cat doesn’t like to use a scratching post, sisal rope scratcher, or any other kind of scratcher, they may use the cardboard as a scratcher/claw sharpener.

The cat is supposed to bat the ball around the track and is supposed to have hours of fun playing with this toy.

At first, Isis wasn’t into the cardboard, but we took some catnip and rubbed it into the cardboard, this caused her to scratch and bite at it, so that did the job well.

She will sometimes bat at the ball in the track, other times it seems to freak her out.  If we play with it, with her, she will get into it for a while, but grows tired of it sooner rather than later.

Final Verdict: This one is a toss up.  While Isis does play with it and does use it as a scratcher (she uses her kitty condo and sisal scratcher as well), she wasn’t too keen on the ball in the track.  I would recommend it for younger cats who are just learning that the furniture is not their playground/scratching posts.  Also cats who like to chase things will love the ball in the track.  Isis does like it, just not as much as I hoped.  Slight recommendation.

 

You can buy the toy here.

Product Review – Firstrax Carpet Chase Cylinder Base Swat Toy (For Cats)

The swat toy is a cylinder shaped toy with a spring and a furry ball at the end that the cat is supposed to bat at and it will bounce right back up to give hours of playtime fun.  The carpet covering encourages the cat to use it as a “scratching post” in order to not use furniture to scratch on.

The idea of this toy is great, and if you have a kitten or a cat that likes toys that pop right back and there is no real “catch and win” with the toy, meaning the cat cannot catch the ball and drag it away, then this is the toy for your cat.  Your cat will be able to grab onto the ball but then when they release it, it pops right back up in place.

This toy…annoyed Isis to no end.  We knew it was time to get rid of it when she actually hissed and growled at it, which she NEVER does to anyone or with anything else.

We showed her how to play with it, encouraged her to play, we played with it to get her to play with it.  We put her favorite catnip on it to get her interested.  Finally one day she started to play with it and then just hissed at it and growled.   Every time she would pass by it, she would go around it with a wide birth and just never got into playing with it.

Final verdict: I would not recommend this as it sees that not many cats are interested in playing with it (after reading the reviews from other pet parents on the website).  It did not provide any fun for Isis, it was far from anything she would ever play with.  If your cat likes toys of this sort and doesn’t mind not being able to win, this is the toy for them, otherwise, steer clear of this toy.  Not recommended.

The toy is available on wag.com for $8.99, at least it wasn’t a huge waste of money.

 

Laser Toys For Cats – What’s The Harm?

Well there is and isn’t harm, depending on the toys you have to augment the use of the laser toy.

A laser toy can be a wonderful toy to get cats “riled” up and get them into “hunting mode”.  When having playtime daily with your cat, this toy can keep your cat’s attention for some time, but here is where the “harm” can come in.

Your cat does not get the satisfaction of being able to “catch” their prey and play with it.  We have seen cats outside when they hunt and stalk their prey, when they finally catch it, it seems more like a game and a toy to play with until they finally kill it.

This is when it is a good time to change toys with your cat and give them something tangible.  One toy that I have talked about and love to use with Isis, is Da Bird.  It is a feather toy on a string, on a rod and it mimics birds movements when it is waved around the room.  This will satisfy the need to catch the prey and have something to play with.

Using a laser toy is a good thing and gets a cat mobile and active, which helps to keep their weight under control.  It gets them riled up to play, and it can be fun to watch them chase it around the room.  Laser toys are still good toys to have, don’t get rid of them, just make sure there is another toy to augment it.

A final point, when using a laser toy with a cat or any animal, do not point it and shine it in their eyes.  It can damage their eyes and their eyesight.  Please use caution when playing with these toys with your cat.

This article explains more information on laser toys and your cat.

 

Indestructible Dog Toys

Do you have a dog that is a major chewer?  Do they destroy toys as soon as you buy them?  Do you spend tons of money on toys only to have them rip to shreds or get chewed apart completely in a matter of moments?  Well I think I may have a solution for you.

Sasha is one of those dogs.  Give her a toy and within 30 seconds, it will be ripped apart, pulled apart, chewed to pieces or popped and deflated.  It was costing us quite a bit of money to buy her any kind of toy.  She even chewed through the Kong toys that said they were for “strong chewers”.

We had just about given up getting her any sort of toy, when we stumbled across a toy called “unbreakoball”.  We laughed and both said they hadn’t met Sasha yet and she would break any old toy, especially a ball.  (After all, she had burst three balls already that were called “unbreakable”).

After searching the website, we figured we would try something, ANYTHING so that she could have a toy of her own that wouldn’t break.  We ordered the ball and waited for it to arrive.

Once the ball arrived, we took Sasha to the park to play.  We threw the ball and waited…and waited.  Sasha grabbed the ball and started to play with it and bite it.  I kind of half closed my eyes, expecting the ball to break.  It didn’t and it was actually standing up to the rough and tumble way that Sasha plays.

That was three months ago, and so far, the ball has a few scratches, but it is still in tact!  She loves it and loves to play hard with it.  I love that we can provide her with something sturdy and fun to play with that she just loves.  Sasha gives this toy two paws up!

Here is the website where the ball is located.  And here is the ball we bought. The ball says it is for dogs that are 65 lbs and up.  Sasha is 50 lbs., but needs a ball of this size so that she doesn’t break it.  Keep that in mind when you order.  Remember, buy a ball or a toy big enough so that your dog cannot get it in their back teeth.  If a toy gets into their back teeth, they are the strongest and the toy will get destroyed.

 

Fixing Aggressive Behavior Issues

Many of us have adopted dogs and were not sure of their temperament, nor their behavior health.  Many times we need to work diligently to help remove the undesirable behavior and instill our desired behavior.

One thing that needs mentioning is that changing undesirable behavior, can be a daunting task and can take anywhere from hours to days, to even months.  Please do not give up on your new best friend.  They are probably scared, confused and desperately wanting to please you but aren’t sure what you are asking for.  Patience and some good treats can work wonders for teaching good behavior.

When retraining your dog, it is always good to use common sense and take a step back and figure out why your dog is acting a certain way.  If your dog is growling or snapping, they are putting you on notice that they are at their limit for what they can tolerate.  By punishing them for doing so, you are essentially telling your dog not to perform instinctual behavior and behavior that can help you to determine when to back off, thus confusing the dog.  Yes, your dog needs to learn that they cannot go off the deep end and bite you or maul you, but when they warn you in this way, that is how they are communicating with you.

This website is wonderful and has great information to teach your dog how to respond to you and how to display more desired behavior.  If your dog is aggressive, this will help to show them they are good dogs who just need a little help from being confused and not trained properly.