The Terminator (of Toys)

By: Anne Corke

Mar 03 2012

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Category: Terriers

1 Comment

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Although I realize that dog toys are ultimately disposable, I was always of the opinion that a well-made toy should last at least a few months. That was before I met Sophie. Before Sophie (aka the Terminator) came along, Danny was an only dog with lots of toys. And, apart from a couple of Frisbees that got more tugging than catching, his toys provided many months of vigorous play. But things changed when Sophie arrived on the scene and proceeded to decimate his collection. Sophie is the doggy equivalent of a piranha, a little dog with big teeth, small but deadly. Petite and cute as a button, Sophie is a one-dog toy demolition expert. She can disembowel any plush toy faster than you can say fetch. In mere minutes, the squeaker is punctured and silenced and the soggy skin lies on the carpet surrounded by clumps of polyester stuffing. Another toy gone before it’s time. Sharp little incisors plucked the fur from all of Danny’s plush toys and ripped the rubber ones to bits. More and more toys ended up in the basement in various states of disrepair, some salvageable, others not so lucky! Danny was distraught! I had to find a toy that could withstand Sophie’s attentions. First, I bought a triangle shaped toy made from fire hose which, according to the salesperson, was indestructible. Well, Sophie obviously couldn’t read the tags, so she had no preconceived notion of this toy’s durability and immediately set about finding the weak spot (the corner) and gnawing away at it. Once she had compromised the integrity of the fire hose, she lost interest. The next to fall was a frisbee marketed as one of the toughest toys from this particular manufacturer which gives each toy a toughness rating from one to ten. This item was a nine, pretty tough you would think. But Sophie found it’s Achilles heel, the heavy-duty tape, triple sewn around the edges, also succumbed to shredding! The ragged edges have severely affected it’s aerodynamics and it’s flying days are done. Well, how about an item designed for chewing. Perhaps that would spare the toys. Rawhide chewies were relished by both dogs, but unfortunately they made a contest out of it and tried to see who could devour theirs faster. In order to win this game, they would rip off and gulp down big chunks until the remaining piece was almost, I repeat, almost, swallowing size. They would hurriedly attempt to swallow this last piece and almost choke in the process, coughing it up and giving it a few more chews before their next attempt. Not wishing to have to perform the Heimleich manouever on either of them, I abandoned the Chewies. I moved on to large raw beef knuckle bones. Both dogs adored them and would spend a couple of hours (ah, peace at last!) working away at them. However they did eventually manage to break the edges of the bone. And the rich marrow made them both vomit. And then I discovered the latest thing in chewables for dogs –  naturally shed deer antlersI Last week, after much soul-searching (the antlers are twelve bucks a piece!), I opted for the antlers. Very hard, very durable, long-lasting, won’t splinter – oh yeah? guess again! So much for the antlers. And so the search goes on, and in the meantime, Sophie and Danny content themselves with chewing twigs that they find in the backyard. Both have now made emergency visits to the vet when the offending twigs became lodged in their mouths. (Those vet bills will take a big bite out of their toy budget!) I suppose I must now patrol the yard for twigs every day. But in the absence of twigs, they’ll just help themselves to chunks of mulch from my gardens. Seems I’m fighting a losing battle.

P.S. The only two toys which have survived almost unscathed are a duck and a fish constructed of heavy canvas and tightly stuffed. Sophie hasn’t yet managed to compromise them so instead she licks them ’til they are sopping wet! I’m sure she’s working on a strategy though and will one day get the better of them!

Copyright 2012 Anne Corke

One comment on “The Terminator (of Toys)”

  1. Too funny! Luv the impish photo of Sophie. Thank you for sharing, Anne.

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