Thursday, July 30, 2015

This 'n That Thursdays: New Favorite Products for Dogs

So deceptively innocent-looking!

Getting a new dog always takes some adjustment time, and the arrival of Maddie in our household is no exception.  While she is a very sweet and loving girl, she is also completely untrained.  We are working on her issues, and I have found a few new products that make this transition time a little bit easier on all of us.  One of my favorite finds was very inexpensive and came from our local Walmart:

This ceramic pet bowl is wide, shallow, and hefty, which means it is unlikely to tip over.  It also has a slightly curved edge inside that makes it easier for dogs to get at the food (I have bought far too many dog bowls over the years that are so tall, narrow, and/or sharply angled inside that my dogs had a hard time eating out of them).  Unfortunately, this bowl is no longer available online, but your local store may still have some.  They are relatively inexpensive (less than $10, probably closer to $8 as I recall) and come in two sizes (for my 30- and 45-pound dogs I got the larger size with the 7-inch diameter and 2.5-inch height).  There were also four different color choices (white, blue, orange, and taupe), so if you are lucky you may even be able to find one in a favorite color!

From Affordable Pet Supply

To keep Maddie occupied requires a lot of toys!  If I really need her to stay quietly in one place, the best option I have found is a treat called the Himalayan Dog Chew.  They are not cheap (normally $8 each for the medium size at our local pet store, but I got mine on sale for $6 each) but dogs love them and you can make them last longer by limiting the amount of time your dogs get to chew on them.  They are made of yak milk, of all things, and are very hard, but a young and determined dog can finish one off in a few days if allowed.  That is way too much cheese, so it really is best to supervise and restrict chewing time!  I am thinking of ordering another chew option from this company called Ruff Roots.  They really are root tubers and they do not shatter like bones or wood, but break down into soft fibers.  These toys are supposedly extremely durable and great for keeping teeth clean, so I think they are worth a try.

One other item that is invaluable with an unreliably housebroken dog is a pet gate or barrier, and by far the best I have found is the Richell USA Elite 6 Panel Convertible Pet Gate (they were slightly less expensive on Amazon, but were out of stock, so I got mine online from Walmart for a little over $200).  There are so many options for configuring this gate, and the panels are easily added or removed to vary the size (you can even buy extra panels!).  The barrier is sturdy but not overly heavy, and the gate section is very easy to use.  My husband thought the locking mechanism for the gate was not dog-proof enough, so I added a little bungee cord to help hold it shut more securely.  There is also no way to attach the gate to a wall, but I read a comment from one customer who just used small hooks and eyes that worked perfectly for this purpose.  Otherwise I have never found a pet gate that is so versatile and easy to use like this one, and I heartily recommend it to anyone who needs to keep dogs away from certain areas.

I am sure that some day Maddie will mature into the perfect dog just like Ruby did, but until then a few gadgets that make life easier are greatly appreciated!

Such a perfect pup!

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