We’re still all about toys at the office, given the boxes and boxes of them that arrived last week. And there’s nothing like having a new puppy in the house to get you back to thinking about toys!
A great happy surprise has been that the toy we were afraid would live on our shelves forever, Sherman the (Big) Sheep, has been a big hit. It’s sold more than any of the other toys, and we are still smiling about it. (And so is Will, he adores it.) There are a few left, but we don’t expect them to hang around for long. Just fyi, the loser of the new toy choices is the hapless Scorpion, undoubtedly an image most people don’t want to see, and to make matters worse, it’s covered in “nature’s warning colors–red and black–just to make it more off putting. Poor little scorpions, I suspect they’ll be hanging around for awhile. All our dogs are fine with that, the Scorps are one of their all time favorite toys and we’ll be forced to take them home if they never sell. Picture Border Collies, Goldens, Beagles and Heeler mixes crossing their paws.
But I thought I’d mostly write today about two toys that we discovered during our research that are, well, weird. I don’t know any other way to describe them. Weird toy number one is the Doggie Lover Doll, manufactured in Brazil for dogs to have something to hump. Seriously. Here’s what the manufacturers said in their release: “Human beings have their hands to masturbate themselves, now the domestic animals…. can alleviate themselves with a toy designed specifically for them.” Yup, you read it right, the doggy equivalent of a plastic doll. Oh my. (And no, we won’t be adding it to our collection of toys available on our website! I tried to find the website for it, but I got a “website down” message. Should I not be surprised? Was this all a big joke?)
Weird toy number two is . . ., wait for it: Mr. Poops! Yes, indeedy, even you can buy a toy that looks exactly like dog feces. Imagine the fun you’ll have picking it up and tossing it around your living room floor. It’s made by the same people that make some of our favorite toys, My Dog Toy, but geeez, guys, who thought that up?
I remember one speech I gave at a fund raising dinner at which the hotel staff had decided it would be soooo funny to provide the chocolate desert in the form of dog poop. Apparently they all laughed like loons, but imagine a room of very quiet people when the desert plates came out. No one ate the desert, they had to throw it all away and the laugh turned out to be on them. You just gotta love our species sometimes. (Does anyone remember this and where it happened? Surely it could have only happened in one place!)
Anyone else know of more toys to go into the “what were they thinking” category?
MEANWHILE, back on the farm: Will had oral surgery on Tuesday and Hope went to a friends for a few days so that Will could come home and recuperate. (And yup, that was the tooth that I had a root canal done on, after which I was told that the tooth would forever be brittle and he could never chew on anything harder than a rotten tomato. Okay, I exaggerate, but if I had been told an hour before what was told an hour afterward, I would have elected to have the tooth extracted then. Before the root canal the dental specialist told me that it would give Will a “fully functional” tooth. That means a tooth that can chew on something harder than a sock to me . . . But I won’t elaborate here lest I sound churlish; see an earlier post for a discussion and great comments about teeth, chewing, bones and dental procedures.) After thinking long and hard about the issues, I had decided to allow Will to chew on some objects, while avoiding hard ones like the long bones of cows, extra hard chew bones, etc. I just don’t think a dog can be a dog if he is not allowed to chew on anything. So I figured the broken tooth was inevitable, but the timing was unfortunate, to say the least. But I still will allow Will to chew on soft bones and some toys harder than dish rags. Everything in moderation.
For now my challenge will be preventing Hope and Will from playing tug games until next Tuesday (so that Will’s gum can heal). It is their absolute favorite game, so life will be interesting to say the least. Thank heavens for crates! Hope just came back and charmed me with his sweet, enthusiastic greeting and adorable ears. I’m sooooo curious to see how Willie responds to his return. Thrilled to see him? Or not? I’ll let you know next week.
At the farm the birds and flowers continue to be a delight. It’s green and lush and about as pretty as it can get here. The barn is full of swooping barn swallow youngsters, the wrens are busy on their second nests of the season, and the Cedar Waxwings are gobbling up the berries from the Service Berry tree. They are such elegant birds! Here’s a photo of one that a friend just sent me from his summer home in upper Michigan.
Wishing all of you speedy recoveries and an early return to less complicated living. I don’t envy you trying to keep a couple of dogs from playing their favorite game even for a limited amount of time. Best of luck.
Ranger’s favorite toy at the moment is a truly hideous giant stuffed tick–it was a gift from our next door neighbor. Maybe I should consider getting him a scorpion to go with it. He’s not especially toy motivated but when he finds something he likes he’ll play with it for hours and until he gets tired of it it makes a great reward for things like running through the little agility course (three jumps and a tunnel) set up in the front yard.
“Thank heavens for crates!”
and thank goodness for dogs who know how to settle in crates.
Melanie S says
Oh my indeed! Maybe the website message ought to have read “Website down and dirty”! Yikes. That toy’s taking anthropomorphism to the next level, that’s for sure.
Funny thing… this week Slipstream, my whippet, was standing adjacent to the telly when a segment on dogs came on. He looked at the screen with interest and then, just as the screen changed to a shot of an Airedale turning away from the camera and providing a nice gratuitous butt shot, Slip reached his nose out and touched/sniffed the screen in just the right spot! I got a chuckle from that. So maybe that humpable toy should come with a DVD of some sashaying dog butts to get the dog ‘in the mood’.
My heeler absolutely loves the hedgehog toys. There are numerous variations, but she really likes the ones that have the traditional squeaker and another squeaker that sounds more like a grunt (there is no good way to describe it). She has a stash of them and rotates through them on a regular basis. She loves to take them outside and roll around in the grass, uses them as pillows, curls up next to them in the living room, and does the happy puppy roll on her back with them in her mouth. We even play catch with them. She has 2 toy boxes full of toys and she always goes for the hedgies. A distant second would be treat dispensing toys, specifically anything she can toss so the treats fly out. The Busy Buddy Squirrel is a favorite.
Wow. I just googled the Doggie Lover Toy. Wow.
An article I found about it said the following “In fact, the doll’s creator, Marcos Giroto, found that in his testing of the toy with various dogs, the owners later reported a calmer, less aggressive, less anxious dog, who was less interested in marking territory”
Whatever works, I guess? I would be totally creeped out having that thing in my house.
Wow! Where do these people come up with this stuff???
Hope Will recovers quickly! My crazy boy Lance had a root canal last year. He chipped his canine tooth after a freak accident involving our coffee table…okay he ran into it trying to catch a toy. The dental specialist told us the same thing, nothing hard to chew on. She recommended hitting a toy/chew on your knee if it was too hard for that you shouldn’t give it to them. Not sure what that proves pretty much anything harder than a squeaky can hurt your knee if you tap it hard enough.
I have been giving him only rawhides since then. He has never had a real bone (he was just over a year when it happened) and I threw away all the nylabones after this just in case. We took Logan in for a cleaning a few months back and the x-ray found 2 fractured teeth. We have had our fair share of dental mishaps with our three clumbsy pups…
Veronique Vanderbeke says
So funny about the humping toy! I used to work at a doggie daycare/boarding facility and one day had to do a temperament evaluation on a small grey terrier mix. The owner had to fill out a long questionnaire before the evaluation and on there this particular owner stated that her male dog had a plush toy to relieve his sexual desires. And yes, when the dog came in to board, she gave us the nasty toy with the instruction to give it to him 30 minutes a day!
Last week I bought the cheapest soft red squeaky ball that I thought my dogs would destroy in a second. Turns out my male corgi fell in love with it and plays with it all the time, without ripping it apart. You just never know!
What is it about the hedgehog toys? My two dogs tear apart most of their “stuffies” in a matter of hours or days but they carry their hedgehogs around for months until they are too disgusting to smell or look at any longer (the hedgehogs not the dogs….). Their other favorite stuffed toy is a “fatcat” toy that is stuffed canvas shaped like a weird cat.
I’m sorry about Will’s tooth – I’m nursing a sore tooth headed toward a root canal myself so I am very sympathetic.
I love your blog – where else fo you get excellent advice combined with a belly laugh! Sophy’s absolutely favourite toy is a rat from IKEA (and yes, I read the warning circulating about giving children’s toys to dogs, and decided the diminutive risk was worth it!). It is a very soft toy rat, about 7 inches long plus tale, and just realistic enough to give you the abdabs if you see it on the stairs without contact lenses in of a morning … it was Fat Rat, but she made a hole in it and pulled all the stuffing out, so it is now known as Flat Rat. It gets stuffed with small treats and kibble so she can disembowel it over and over again, and hidden under a heap of old cushions so that she can dig it out. I strongly suspect some small terrier genes somewhere in the development of papillons! Poppy’s favourite toy is whichever one Sophy has.
I love waxwings! They are beautiful and stately. They look like they have been airbrushed. We have a bird group like that over here. Woodswallows. They look so clean and sharp all the time. Not a stately bird, though. They are too busy swooping around collecting insects.
I’m a fan of the $2 toys bin at pet stores. You often find something bizarre in there. We have a leopard-spotted fish with pink lips. At least, I think it’s a fish. The shape is barely recognisable. Something like a horseshoe crab crossed with a box fish.
I also did a search for the Doggie Lover Toy, and while the company’s website is down, there are several sites that mentioned the product, all in a positive way. All of them have pictures of the product, but one has multiple views. Wow. Here’s what they say in their article about it: “a female canine manufactured in soft rubber with a silicone vagina and an easy to clean reservoir. The product also comes with a tube of water-based intimate lubricant, to increase the useful life of the doll.” That’s one thing I would NOT want to clean. And lubricant, seriously? Wow.
And Mr. Poops…I can see the humor in it. It would be amusing to see the reactions of people when they saw your dog with it in his mouth. But I don’t think I would want to see it in his mouth! This will also be a pass for us, laughs!
Thanks for the reviews. Maybe Bear and I will try some of the toys that made the cut.
The poop toy? Disgusting. Blechhhh.
Obviously no one else has had an eight year old boy find the fake poop….he found it amusing much longer than the rest of the family (including the dogs)
I love Cedar Waxwings, and that is a great picture.
The doggy lover toy- that is just ewwwww- I would think it would cause behavior problems too- what do you think?
I love your blog. I learn so much, and love the pictures. Hope looks like she will be a cutely. Sure glad that you let Will pick out his companion. About toys my border collie/lab mix loves tennis balls and baseballs.. Especially the ones that she finds on her daily walks. We have a backyard full of them. She also likes a toy similar to a Kong that has a reward for her at the end. Interesting enough when we were babysitting a 6 month old puppy, he decided that all of Mancha’s toys were worth playing with. Mancha was beside herself. As soon as the puppy lost interest in the toy Mancha would steal and put in a safe place that the puppy would not play with. And these were toys she never touch and has not touched since then. You don’t need much to keep them happy.
The poop toy reminds me of the fake plastic vomit we found as kids and placed on the living room carpet. Our boxer was prone to vomiting and our father’s reaction was all we could have hoped for…
Daisy loves stuffed toys that squeak. If I could only train the cats not to squeak when she grabs them (gently, but it’s still a grab) by the neck, life around here would be much more peaceful.
One Christmas, my dad gave me a nice wrapped present labeled “from the cat.” I opened it and it contained and extremely lifelike, ceramic cat poop. My dad and my brother laughed so hard he almost fell off the couch. I had the last laugh and had a lot of fun hiding that gift various places over the next few years.
Ack, that should read “an” extremely and “laughed so hard they.”
My girl loves her Kong Wubba Toy and her stuffed sheep (but the sheep will be played dead soon)
She also loves playing with a card board move box – the move box lies on the floor and the girl scratches and pulls.
If I would let her, her fav toy would be my havaiana sandals 😉
One of my dogs also LOVES hedgies. She has all sizes and loves them all. The jumbo makes me laugh. My other dog LOVES Hide-a-Squirrel (and bee and bird). He doesn’t play with toys much but acts like a puppy with his Hide-a-Squirrel. Both toys are kept up so they remain special. I think tonight will be a special occasion. I’m trying to talk myself into a Nina Ottoson wooden puzzle. I just hate to spend the money if they aren’t going to be interested in it.
Thanks for the update on the Will’s teeth. I have an 11 yo BC X with teeth problems from a life of Frisbee so I like to hear what other people are doing. I have taken away the bones and feel terrible about it. They do get stuffed frozen kongs, but it is just not the same.
Best wishes to Will.
Our Iggy’s first loved toy was a red stuffed long-dog, so we called the toy “Clifford,” after the animated character. And now, with that toy completely destroyed, she thinks ALL toys are called Clifford. We say, “Where’s Clifford?” and she bounds over to get her stuffed frog, shaking it crazily.
what were they thinking! – toys – the sherpa ( go do) Road Kill toys. Why ? Because they have sleeve to put your hand (and arm) into. Like a hand puppet. Great toy as long as people remember not to use them that way 🙂
I haven’t looked it up, but I’ve read the descriptions of the love dog toy above. What I want to know is if this is sexual discrimination. They have something to relieve boy doggies. What about the girl doggies?!? It’s just not fair! 🙂