One Tough and Entertaining Toy I LOVE

by Barb S. on June 11, 2010

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The Dulsinator chomps on a Linkables Orb.

The Dulsinator chomps on a Linkables Orb.

As you may know, my elder Newfoundland, Dulse, had an adventure a couple of weeks ago involving cans and jars. He is still okay, no after effects.  But I have been determined ever since to keep him occupied, since one of my theories of the incident was that he was bored. Besides, his brother, Rudder is tough on toys as well, and there have not been many that have survived AND been played with day after day.

I decided to bite the bullet and buy Linkables. Linkables are a series of hollow hard rubber shapes with recessed “treat holders” inside the ends and smaller star-shaped “treat holders” outside. One is a large ball, with two ends, one is an elbow, and another is a twisty tube. They attach together two ways – one way makes it fairly easy for the dog to get them apart and get to the treats, and one which makes it more challenging. I bought the 3-pack thinking that my dogs were “so smart” they’d get it right away. Well, to my surprise, when I gave Dulse and Rudder the shapes attached together, they looked at me with cocked heads and a Scooby-Doo-like, “HUH?” The minute I took the shapes apart and gave them each one piece, they dove in and literally worked for at least 45 minutes to get the treats out. THEN I read the instructions, which said that you should start with one shape and gradually add shapes as your dog gets more adept at removing the treats. 

Linkables Dog Toys

I keep refilling with biscuits and parts of biscuits and they are both still intrigued with removing the treats.  I will try kibble tonight, with biscuits wedged in each end. I will get the new Linkables treats next — they fit exactly in the outer star shaped holes. They will be available starting in July.

A great plus of these toys is their durability factor. My dogs can both be pretty aggressive chewers and the Linkables are holding up just fine. One nice feature I noticed is that the end “treat holders” are recessed enough so that the dog cannot dig inside and tear them apart.

Dulse (left) and Rudder (right) enjoying their Linkables.

Dulse (left) and Rudder (right) enjoying their Linkables.

One humorous side note is that although Dulse has a hard time getting around, last night I caught him halfway across the room bullying Rudder’s shape from him because it had a dime-sized piece of biscuit rattling around in it. It is hard to believe that this old boy still has the ability to intimidate a dog who has nearly 50 lbs and 10 years on him!

Anyway, I am so thrilled with this toy that I just had to write about it.
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About the author: Barb is a Certified Veterinary Technician with degrees in Journalism and German Studies from the University of Minnesota. She lives happily in the northwoods of Wisconsin with her Newfoundland, Rudder, and her tuxedo cat, Max. Barb is Senior Copywriter for Drs. Foster and Smith dog and cat catalogs and has been with the company since 1999. See more articles by Barb S.

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Linkables Dog Toys: Durable Toys That Dogs Love | Toys & Game-Review
June 11, 2010 at 8:03 am

{ 7 comments… read them below or add one }

Mary June 11, 2010 at 1:47 pm

I love your stories about Dulse and Rudder. Thanks for sharing them

Barb S. June 11, 2010 at 3:48 pm

Thanks, Mary, I needed that! It is a blessing that I get to live with these dogs.I’m sure everyone feels that way about theirs as well! What kind of dog is in your photo- she is darling! It’s hard to tell with these little thumbnails – is that a Pyr or Kuvasz pup?

Melissa R. July 14, 2010 at 8:10 am

I bought the “Elbow” version of this toy and I am AMAZED at how occupied it keeps Mocca!! We think it is a little like torture, because she’ll work for so long trying to get that last bit out of the toy . She sure seems to love it though! We’ve always had a Kong, but it has never entertained her this much. I think it is because of the shape, and there are so many ways to possibly get the treats out of the toy, whereas the Kong just has the 1 opening. Anyway, WE LOVE THIS!! It is also VERY durable! She chews & chews & chews but there isn’t a scratch on it!

http://www.dfs-pet-blog.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/07/photo.jpg

Ellen B. August 2, 2010 at 2:46 pm

After reading Barb and Melissa’s recommendations for this toy, I just had to buy one for my dog. I concur – excellent dog toy! Probably the most durable dog toy I’ve ever seen. The fact that it’s a puzzle type toy is a perk. I bought the elbow style, and I like it because it doesn’t roll around (under furniture) as easily as something like the Buster Cube.

Barb S. August 2, 2010 at 2:51 pm

Okay, I have to say that even after almost two months of use, all each have are a few pockmarks on them- that’s IT! For some reason they both love the elbow and in fact it is hilarious seeing Rudder “steal” it, because he looks like he has a big red pipe in his mouth! Maybe I should get him a cape and a Sherlock Holmes cap!

Mugsie Frentz November 6, 2010 at 2:26 pm

I have just purchased all three of the LINKABLES. However, after opening the box, I have been shocked at the very strong smell these toys give off. So far, I have not given the toys to the dogs because I would like to find out how safe they are. The label says, “Made in China” and I have read studies from The American Association of Veterinary Laboratory Diagnosticians that high levels of Lead, Chromium, Arsenic and Mercury have been found in some dog toys from China. Do you know, or do you know who might know, is these specific toys are safe? Thanks!

Barb S. November 8, 2010 at 11:26 am

Hi Mugsie! Linkables are rubber and many rubber items smell like these. We spoke to the Linkables manufacturer and he responded, “Raw rubber has a strong smell, so we ask our vendor to add a vanilla scent to mask it. Over time, both smells will dissipate.”

The Linkables manufacturer also assured us that they have all these products tested by a third party both in China and here in the USA.

My dogs have had no problems with these toys.

Hope that helps.
Barb

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