Product Review: P.L.A.Y. Wobble Ball
The P.L.A.Y. Wobble Ball looks like a treat, but will it wobble its way into our hearts or out the door?
When I eat chocolate, I like to shovel it into my mouth as fast as I can, and I WILL bite anyone who comes near me. As comical as it might be to see a grown woman growling at people while she eats, it is not funny when it comes to dogs. These are two real problems in the dog world: the gobblers and the growlers. Treat dispensing toys can help a dog overcome food aggression, and slow down the gobblers.
A lot of food aggression stems from the dog learning to guard his bowl, and can lead to some pretty serious issues. Now, there’s a training process involved to fix this, but one of the things I suggest to clients is to mix up their dog’s feeding method, from hand-feeding to treat toys. The treat releasing toy makes the dog work for his dinner, and there’s no longer a bowl to guard. Mind you, purchasing a treat toy isn’t going to fix the problem and you should always consult a professional, but these types of toys can be a useful tool.
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The gobblers also benefit from these toys. You know the gobbler type: dogs who act like they haven’t eaten in weeks and just gulp it down without chewing (ahem, I’m taking to you, Labradors). This can lead to health problems ranging from vomiting to bloat. Finding a toy that dispenses the food slowly really helps. But the trick is to find a toy that dispenses at the right speed, so your dog doesn’t spend an hour trying to get his dinner, or still manage to gulp it down in thirty seconds.
And that brings me to the P.L.A.Y. Wobble Ball, a unique-looking treat-dispensing toy.
The ball comes in three pieces, and has a spot underneath the autumn scene to store extra treats. It’s simple to take apart and put back together, and filling it with food is easy as well. You simply tighten the ball and then scoop the treats or food in the side holes. It comes in three different colors – I got the adorable orange fall-themed one to play with.
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I decided to try this out on one of my dog clients who tends to eat fast, a Shiba Inu named Loki. I figured he’d be an accurate test on whether it actually slows down a food intake. And Loki was an ideal guinea pig because the breed is incredibly smart and notoriously devious.
I filled up the Wobble Ball and let him go to town. For testing purposes I put about ten bite-sized treats in and watched to see how long it took him. He loved it, and it certainly slowed down his eating time. It was hilarious to watch him have to think about how to get at the treats, and occasionally he got frustrated. I took this frustration as a good sign, meaning the toy was challenging him.
The toy is brilliantly designed and the pumpkins inside actually have a purpose, which is to keep all the food from coming out at once. Loki had to work at it for a reasonable amount of time before getting the treats out. Once he finished, he went to the couch for a nap! Mission accomplished – the Wobble Ball forced him to work for his meal, allowed him to savor the treats and tired him out.
To Buy or not to Buy:
Buy! Buy all of them! This is one of the absolute best treat toys I have seen, and I’ve seen them all. It’s the type of puzzle that will always require the dog’s focus, whereas some of them they figure out after the first try and then it’s boring to them. The food release is just the right pace, and it’s the perfect size. Too big and your wild child picks it up and bashes it into the wall. Too small and you can’t fit the dog’s dinner in it, so you have to refill it three times. It’s made from a strong plastic, so your dog shouldn’t be able to chew threw it. Take that with a grain of salt, because I’ve seen dogs chew through metal crates. But your average hound will not destroy it. I highly recommend this toy to anyone who wants to engage their dog’s brain and/or slow down their food intake.
You can try the P.L.A.Y. Wobble Ball for yourself – it can be purchased on the P.L.A.Y. website and comes in a variety of designs. If ordered directly from the website, it costs $17.90 plus shipping.
Note: PetGuide.com was NOT compensated for this review. We received a P.L.A.Y. Wobble Ball to review. The opinions expressed in this post are the author’s. We provide unbiased feedback of the products and share products we think our readers would enjoy using and learning more about.
Rachel Leavy lives in Rochester, New York with her dog, Maria, and her gecko, Nigel. She has loved animals all her life, and has owned her own dog training and walking company for 5 years. When she’s not playing with puppies, she can usually be found writing short stories, riding horses or out at a play.