Wednesday, 5 September 2007

Toys to enrich a dog's life

Tomorrow Penny will be home alone for a while. Normally she she has people here all day, but when she first came to live with us as a tiny puppy she had to cope with being alone for a few hours every day. She's comfortable with her own company and I think it is because from the first we always left her with something to entertain her. Now when I leave she doesn't even bother to accompany me to the door if she's got her treat-filled toys. One of the best, I think, is the Kong.

At first I thought the Kong was just something to throw around, or a chewing toy. Then I realised it's supposed to be stuffed with food. I started out with the recipes on this site but now I usually push banana to the bottom, then some soft food, for instance 4-Legs pieces, or a layer of beef, and finish up with a skerrick of peanut butter or even a tiny smear of Vegemite. Sometimes I shove a bit of biscuit in as hard as I can. If I do a good job of all this, it can take her nearly an hour to lick the Kong completely clean.

Other toys she loves are the plastic ball that has a small hole that allows dried food to fall out as she rolls it around the floor, and the bottom-heavy container that tips from side to side and dispenses treats.

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Another great entertainment are the toys form Aussie Dog. She's got a 'Turbo Chook' for playing tug games with us and I sometimes link it through the 'Home Alone' toy that is set up on the back patio for her. I put dried treats in it sometimes.


darri'smum said...

Not sure what a Home Alone is, can you explain?

parlance said...

The 'Home Alone' is a toy I bought from Aussie Dog, which is a company you can check out by clicking on the link. It's a big ball on a strong elastic hanger. It has a marble in it, which gives it a rattling sound. I sometimes put dried food in it also, which rattles and clinks. Penny likes it but I don't want to overfeed her so I don't do it often.