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.
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.
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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