During the hot summer months, Shiba Sephy has gotten lazy and his waist is starting to look more like his hips.
In an effort to combat the beginnings of his middle-age paunch, I decided to get him some new interactive toys. Hopefully, this will get him going again, and allow him to exercise his body and mind even while resting within the comfort of his house.
Here are some fun dog toys, and reviews by Dog Toy Expert Shiba Sephy and his Dog Toy Expert Assistant Siberian Shania.
Remember to always supervise our dog while he is working on a new toy. Different dogs have different temperaments, and may play differently with a given toy. Just because our friend or neighbor’s dog has used a toy successfully, does not necessarily mean that it will be safe for our dog. It is always important to do our own toy research and evaluate a toy based on the unique temperaments and play-style of our dog.
Premier Busy Buddy Kibble Nibble Dog Toy
This Premier Busy Buddy Kibble Ball is a great favorite with Shiba Sephy. He especially likes it because it is transparent and he can see how much kibble is in there.
Shiba Sephy is a bit obsessive when it comes to working on his food toys. Once he gets into it, he will keep going until he gets everything out. I think he likes seeing how much progress he has made, and how much more there is to do.
I have other kibble balls that are not transparent and he prefers to work on this transparent one.
I also like this Premier kibble ball because is has an oval shape (like an egg), unlike most other kibble balls which are just round. If a dog rolls the ball in the easy natural way (i.e., along the shorter side of the egg), no kibble will come out. Kibble only gets dispensed when the ball is rolled along the longer, more difficult, side.
This makes the dog toy more challenging and engages Shiba Sephy for a longer period of time.
There are plastic tabs along the holes at the top and bottom of the ball. You can clip some of the plastic tabs off to make it easier for the kibble to come out. I clipped a few of these tabs to make things a bit easier for Sephy. Otherwise, the toy was a bit too challenging. If a dog works on it and never gets rewarded, he might lose interest and not come back to the toy.
Sephy really likes this dog toy but there are two weaknesses that I have seen –
- The toy is made out of hard plastic, therefore it can make a lot of noise when rolled over hard surfaces, such as tile or hard wood floors. If you live in an apartment, this may disturb your neighbors, especially those that live downstairs.
- It is sometimes difficult to screw the two halves of the toy back together. Usually I insert kibble from the larger hole at the bottom of the ball rather than opening and closing the ball itself.
Ruff Dawg Spikey Ball Dog Toy
The Ruff Dawg Spikey Ball is another Shiba Sephy favorite. It is a nice rubber ball with shallow holes all around it where you can stuff food.
I find that soft food works best because it is compressible and can be securely wedge within the holes. Hard food just falls out or can be easily dislodged.
I put in pieces of boiled chicken and let Sephy dig it out with his long canines.
This toy only works well with dogs that have longer, larger teeth. For example, it did not work as well for Siberian Husky Shania because her teeth are relatively shorter, and it is more difficult for her to dig into the holes to get the food out. Shiba Sephy however, has no problems and enjoys working on this dog toy.
Kong Wobbler Dog Toy
The Kong Wobbler is another interesting variation on the ever popular KONG Dog Toy.
The Kong Wobbler is made of hard plastic and there is a weight at the bottom of the toy which makes it automatically tip back to an upright position. There is a hole in the middle of the toy where you may put in kibble and other types of small dog treats.
To get food out, the dog will have to tip over the toy, in such a way that the hole is facing downwards. Siberian Shania has figured out that she gets the best results by holding down the Wobbler, and rolling it before letting go. This usually shakes some of the kibble out before the toy tips back to an upright position.
This dog toy is more challenging for Shiba Sephy. He usually just pokes at it with his nose or paw, which is less effective than Shania’s strategy. As a result, he gets fewer rewards per time, and will only work on it when he is hungry and the other toys are empty.
Team Shiba and Siberian Signing Out
Ok – this is it for now. Dog Toy Expert Sephy demands to get paid for answering all my dog toy questions, and Dog Toy Expert Assistant Shania wants to go outside and play.
Until the next time, Team Shiba and Sibe signing out.
It has been a while since I have been on here. Love the new look. Lucky is suffering now from arthritis in his back legs. We are trying to keep him comfortable, but he does have some difficulty when walking. Some days he plays, but others would rather spend in bed. How is Sephy?
Great to see you again Rhonda. Sephy is doing pretty well. He also has some arthritis, on his back. It starts bothering him when he does too much, but as long as we keep him from over-doing it, he is good. Has your vet suggested Adequan? That is something that may help with osteo-athritis by lubricating the joints. However, since it is an injection, it is not something we can do with Sephy.
Big big hugs to Lucky. How old is he now? Sephy is 11+. How quickly time flies.
R Frank says
Please be careful with the wobble kong toys. Lucky the Shiba destroyed one sometime during a two week period while I was away this summer. We are thankful nothing got stuck in his tummy.
He simply dismantled it. When I arrived home, the children showed me what was left and we are very careful to only allow him to play with any toy while we are in the room.
He has also dismantled several other toys labeled “indestructable.” These were not for small dogs, they were for larger breeds because we were certain he would destroy the smaller ones.
That is very good advice.
Heh – Sephy is the same way. One of my neighbors once commented to me that Sephy has really large teeth in relation to his body size and it is very true. Shibas have really large teeth and they are more like a big dog in a little dog body. 😀