Whistle While We Work

The Quantified Self movement has extended to our canine companions with the Whistle (fitbit for dogs). Not only are we tracking our steps with the glorified pedometers, but we are also tracking our dog’s daily activity. And yes, everything is synced to our smart phones with timely updates and push notifications. What we haven’t realized is how to use this information. So our pup Watson took a 20 minute walk this morning, he slept until his afternoon walk, and had a bit of playtime somewhere in the middle. While it is fun and a bit addictive to see what Watson is doing during the day, we have only confirmed he is not out adventuring with Sherlock.

You are tracking my activity? That's it I'm logging a complaint from my cozy bed here.

You are tracking my activity? That’s it I’m logging a complaint from my cozy bed here.

More Mighty Toys!

In a household that tears through toys at an unimaginable pace durable toys are truly mighty. It appears that toymakers out there got our message! Mighty has arrived with durable toys. We have recently purchased several “Mighty” toys, and all of them have survived the two-pup tug test and the thrill of puppy teeth. One might even say they have withstood the test of winter fever.

Mighty Toy Rethinking Durability

Mighty Toy Rethinking Durability

My toy!

My toy!

Hey she took my new toy! Oh well, this toy testing business is tiring!

Hey she took my new toy! Oh well, this toy testing business is tiring!

Chasing the tail

IMG_1885

For the terrier owners out there I think we found an entertaining toy: Doggie Tail: wiggly interactive dog toy. Think YouTube videos of Weazel ball chased by the family dog, and then add a furry cover, a barking noise, and lots of rolling. Some may say it’s hours of endless fun, but when was the last time you saw a terrier pay attention for hours? I am not a huge fan of the noise component of the toy because it sounds like a whiney puppy. However, the terrier thinks this is the best thing since bully sticks.

#betterwithpets

On advertisers’ biggest day, we thought we should comment on an ad we caught prior to the big game. Purina’s incredible dog challenge was on before the Super Bowl, and besides for showcasing the wonders of dog agility and other fun activities, the host channel ran an ad with a great message: Life is #Betterwithpets.

If you have ever owned a pet it is easy to argue that life is better with pets. From a wiggle greeting every time you come home, to the uncanny ability to understand when you just need a good cuddle, a pet by your side undeniably makes life better. Pets also provide you with the type of perspective that is so easily lost in our fast-paced world: tummy rubs are good, treats are even better, and a well-trained human is essential.

Pets of Bronco fans: your humans could use a cuddle.

Life is good

Life is good

Out with the fluff, in with the tough

You know I deserve a treat for wearing the Santa hat!

You know I deserve a treat for wearing the Santa hat!

Goodbye damaged toys, hello new toys. Happy New Year! We hope everyone had a wonderful holiday. As expected, the nose on one of the rope toys was destroyed within 24 hours. Funny how predictable those things are, yet we still purchased the item…

We tried a new dog store recently and found the Mighty Toys. Whether they are mightier than our dynamic duo (terrier and doodle) still remains to be seen, but we were pleased to see someone was trying to meet the need for durability.

Mighty Mite?

Holiday Toy Shopping

Won’t last through the weekend, too many pieces for ripping apart, too much stuffing and not enough stitching… It’s surprisingly hard to find well made toys with a holiday twist. We also have the added trouble/pleasure of finding enough toys with slight variations such that each dog around the tree gets the same number and type of toys. I am sure there will be some trading and maybe a bit of sharing, but let’s be honest there is always a toy hog in a multiple-pet gathering. What’s in our stockings (shhh don’t tell the pups!)?

duck

frog

elephant

I suspect the noses won’t last long (especially the elephant), but there is always hope. In general, we have found rope toys have a lasting quality. Also, smaller toys tend to be harder to ripe between two or three dogs. Since the penguin has already fallen victim to too much holiday fun, we are aiming for more durable toys for Christmas.

Weather outside is frightful…

Whether (or should we say weather) it is rain, snow, sleet or some combination there is always one constant: what is the best time to walk the dog? Unfortunately, I have yet to work that one out, and the weather reporters don’t exactly report the best dog walking conditions. Can we get a paw report please? There are a few items we have found useful for dog walking in most ugly conditions: dog jacket, flashlight, golf umbrella (not for windy conditions), and extra baggies. Dog jackets are tough to find, and they come in every variety: fashion statement, rain only, warmth only, combo rain and warmth, and the colors/patterns. We had a hard time finding a plain blue jacket appropriate for snow/sleet in the proper size. Some people ask why even bother with a jacket? We bother because long wet curly hair tends to mat.

This will be our second winter with the RCPet Whistler Zip Line Version 2.0 blue jacket. Despite the long name, we have been pleased with this product. It has a water resistant nylon shell with a fleece lining and reflective stripes. It is also machine washable, which is good after a rough time in the dog park! If you use a harness instead of a collar there is a zipper on the back that is built specifically for access to harnesses.

RCPet Whistler Zip Line 2.0

RCPet Whistler Zip Line 2.0