Sadie loves her dog chews as much as the next dog, but with this particular chew, Sadie couldn’t wait for me to remove the wrapper to get started! From the minute it left the box from PetOverstock.com, Sadie had a one track mind to get to that Mega Elk Chew from Etta Says! She made such adorable faces as she was chomping away that I couldn’t help taking some photos of her sheer enjoyment.
You can get your own all natural Etta Says! Mega Chew or a variety of other tasty treats for your pets at PetOverstock.com!
I received sample products to use and try out with my dog. All opinions are my own, based solely on personal experience with the products.
From the creative team that brought you Tissue Box Ball and Bowl Ball comes a new game for dogs everywhere to enjoy – Tire Ball. Tire Ball involves a rubber tire toy and a squeaky dog ball. It’s a combination of a chasing / fetching game and a problem solving game, exercising both your dog’s body and mind.
I took one of Sadie’s beloved squeaky balls and smushed it into the hollow center of the tire toy. I then rolled the tire away. Sadie immediately started to chase after the tire to try to get her ball out of it. Depending on how difficult I made it for Sadie, sometimes she could catch the tire and quickly pull her ball out with her mouth. But sometimes Sadie would catch the tire and then have to sit down, using her paws to brace the tire on the floor and try to work her squeaky ball free with her mouth. By changing the difficulty it kept the game interesting for Sadie. And by rolling the tire farther and farther away, Sadie was able to expend more energy and get more exercise at the same time. It’s definitely an easy to play game that’s fun and beneficial for my dog and will be played frequently in our household.
Check out this video of Tire Ball in action! Keep in mind that I was filming and trying to keep Sadie in the frame, so there isn’t much of the chasing part of the game in this video.
Tire Ball was made possible with the help of our friends at PetOverstock.com. They have generously donated the tire toy for today’s game. You can get your own tire dog toy in a variety of sizes from PetOverstock.com.
As I looked around my living room last weekend, I noticed over a dozen tissue boxes lying on the floor. Before you start thinking I might be a secret hoarder, let me remind you that all of these tissue boxes belong to Sadie, as she uses them in her favorite game, Tissue Box Ball. She usually goes from box to box, playing with them one at a time. But on this particular day I decided to see if Sadie would like to play with all of her tissue boxes – at the same time. I took one of her squeaky balls and placed it in a random tissue box. Next I began stacking the tissue boxes one on top of the other to form a tower. Then I told Sadie to find her ball. She sniffed the tower, she barked at the tower, she ran from the tower, but eventually she worked up the courage to knock over the tower. After destroying several more towers throughout the weekend, Sadie perfected her method of handling a tissue box tower.
Step one involves barking at the tower, hoping it will fall down on its own.
Step two is to make sure the ball is actually hidden in the tower. Sadie would sniff the tower for the scent of her ball, and then sniff all over the rest of the living room just to make sure her ball wasn’t secretly hiding somewhere else.
Step three involves more barking, while circling the tower and checking for weaknesses.
In step four Sadie actually hits the tower with her paw and then jumps back, knocking down the tissue boxes without getting hit by them.
And finally, step five involves Sadie sniffing each fallen box looking for the one containing her beloved ball.
You can see the whole game in action in Sadie’s Tissue Box Tower video:
I always like to find ways to include Sadie in all my holiday celebrations. For the past few years I’ve held Easter Egg hunts as a special Easter activity for Sadie. Each year Sadie has had more and more fun and the hunts have been increasingly successful. Today I’d like to share my tips for Easter Egg hunts for dogs so that you can plan a fun Easter activity for your dog too.
The first things you need for an Easter egg hunt are eggs. For Sadie I use the normal children’s plastic eggs that can be found at any store this time of year. But these kinds of eggs may not be safe for all dogs, especially bigger dogs. Sadie is very dainty when she put things in her mouth and makes sure not to bite down hard, so she can safely handle and open these plastic eggs. But if your dog is rougher with playthings and tends to chomp down hard, then you may need to consider alternative options for your ‘eggs’. I would suggest using a bunch of treat balls or similar items that are meant to hold dog treats. Instead of filling up the treat balls all the way, just put a little in each one to reward your dog for finding it and keep looking for the next.
This brings me to the next tip – filling your doggie Easter eggs. Just like with children, you will want to put a little something in each egg to reward your dog for finding it. You will want something yummy in the eggs, something your dog really likes and is willing to work for. And you will want a treat that is not too messy, as it may spill all over when your dog gets the egg or treat ball open. For Sadie I like to use small pieces of cooked chicken. Sadie can easily smell the chicken and is excited to go looking for it. Plus it’s very easy to break into small, bite-sized pieces for each egg.
My final tips are about hiding the eggs. Personally, I don’t like to have the doggie Easter egg hunt outdoors. I’m always afraid that other critters will find the eggs before Sadie does. Or when Sadie gets an egg open, her treat goes flying out and gets covered in dirt, but of course a dog won’t care and she’ll eat dirty chicken anyway. So that’s why I prefer to hide the eggs indoors. I usually shut Sadie into the bedroom with some of my family members and then I hide the eggs in the living room. You definitely want one really easy to find egg to start out the hunt. Especially if your dog isn’t used to treat seeking games, you may want to leave the first egg in the middle of the floor. That way your dog will notice it right away, figure out there is a reward inside, and when you tell him or her to look for more, they’ll have a better understanding of what to find. The rest of the eggs should be hidden in places your dog normally goes. For instance, if you don’t normally let your dog on the couch, you should not hide an egg there. In my house I usually hide eggs behind couch cushions, under Sadie’s blanket, inside her dog house, among the toys in her toy box, up on the window seat, etc. I even hid an egg in one of the tissue boxes Sadie likes to play with! As with children’s Easter egg hunts, try to keep track of where you hid the eggs and which eggs your dog has already found. You will probably need to direct your dog towards an egg once or twice.
Hopefully you can use these tips and enjoy some bonding fun with your dog this Easter weekend. I’m getting ready to have twice as many eggs for Sadie this year. Last year I hid ten eggs, and once Sadie found the last one, she kept running around the house looking for more. She was having so much fun that I didn’t want to ruin it, so I filled the eggs with chicken again and hid them a second time! Below you can enjoy a video of part of Sadie’s Easter egg hunt from last year.
The first step to an awesome doggy Easter basket is obviously the basket. You can use any of the thousands of generic baskets available at any store this time of year. It will certainly look pretty and festive for the season. But there are other options if you don’t want to spend money or don’t care what the basket looks like, because in all honesty your dog really doesn’t care what it looks like. What your dog cares about is how it smells. If you use an empty treat box or container for the base of your Easter basket, your dog will definitely notice it. Or if you get dog food/toys/treats shipped to your house like I do, you can use the shipping box as the Easter basket. You can even decorate the outside of the box to make it more festive looking. Regardless of what it looks like on the outside, the scent of the previous contents remains, helping your dog realize that this Easter basket is for him or her.
For step two, crumple up pieces of tissue paper or newspaper or something similar and place it in your basket or box the way you would use Easter grass. Do not use the shredded plastic Easter grass that baskets for people come with as your dog may accidentally (or purposely) eat some of the pieces. When you fill the basket with treats or toy, bury the items among the crumpled paper. Your dog will enjoy digging around in the newspaper/tissue paper, looking for whatever surprises lay hidden in the basket.
The final step for a DIY doggy Easter basket is the presents for your dog. You must tailor this step to your particular pet, as many dogs have different treats and toys they enjoy. One suggestion is not to include any treats that are perishable or messy, as it may take your dog a while to find everything and you don’t want to end up with a box full of sticky, messy crumpled paper. If you plan on putting loose treats in your basket, you should probably only include the amount your dog is allowed to eat in one sitting. Once your dog finds the first treat in the basket, he or she will probably gobble up the rest pretty quickly. In Sadie’s basket I usually include a few loose treats for her to find and enjoy right away, and also a new package or two of some other treats that she can eat over the next few weeks.
In the above photos you can see the basket I made for Sadie this year. Although I gave it to her a week early so I would have time to take photos for this blog post, I still made sure Sadie had the full Easter Bunny treatment. I hid the box/basket behind the couch and then let Sadie sniff an empty treat bag. I then told her to go find the treats. It took a little while, but eventually she found her Easter basket and started excitedly barking and pawing at it until I tipped it over and let Sadie dig around inside. This DIY doggy Easter basket was a very successful way to share the fun festivities of Easter with my four legged family.