This December Merle celebrated his 7th birthday. This gives me so much joy, for many reasons, including the fact that this has been a tough year on many levels. Merle was diagnosed with a difficult autoimmune disease known as “SLO” which means he suffers from weak nails that fray and lift off from the quick and sometimes come off entirely. It’s terribly painful and debilitating but it seems like with treatment we have it mostly under control (yay!). Nevertheless, it’s the rainy season in the PNW at the moment and it is often difficult, especially with a young toddler at home, to get the dogs out for good long walks or hearty exercise.
We do have a very large yard (think dog park sized) and I wanted to find a toy for Merle’s birthday that would keep him occupied. He is very food motivated so that helps tremendously. When shopping for other sundries for his birthday, I found this multi-leveled treat ball called the IQ Treat Ball (from Our Pets) and it’s super awesome. Why? Because it requires the pup to get the treat out from two levels, helping to keep their attention for longer and making it more challenging. We have tried other treat balls before, but he can figure those out in 5 mins or less. This one seems to keep Merle occupied for at least 15-20 mins at a time (again, yay!). To avoid the problem of it getting stuck under sofas or tables, I toss the ball outside in the yard for Merle and he scoots it around for a good long while (or at least until it gets stuck up against the fence or he loses interest). Nevertheless, he loves it! So its a two thumbs (paws?) up from us. Check out this video of him in action!