Not long ago, I happened to realize that my dog didn't have any decent toys to play with. Unsurprisingly, it was the dog himself who brought this sad fact to my attention. Happy sat there on the bare floor, looking desolate before breaking into a heartrending version of "Old Man River."
I got the message and went over to Petco in Hartsdale. I knew it was time to buy him some playthings. It was either that or to listen to the retriever do a medley of other songs from "Showboat." And his "Cap'n Andy's Ballyhoo" is really unbearable. But they have some new, fun items at Petco, so it was worth the trip.
One of the most intriguing items I found at Petco was their Squeaky Vinyl BBQ Dog Toy. Now, most people can't imagine a piece of plastic meat that moves around and squeals when you eat it...unless, of course, they've been to Outback Steakhouse. I should mention that the BBQ Toys are fun and realistic, but dogs tend to feel ripped off when they finally find out they're not edible. And they tip accordingly.
Kong toys are also plentiful at Petco, and owners love them because they're so indestructible...unless you have a pitbull who chews up one of their rubber bones for practice and then goes after his favorite bone (your leg).
I really enjoyed checking out Kong's Snugga Wubba Toys, even if it does sound like some crazy hip hop expression of rapper Snoop Dogg. This rubber ball, which is coated in fleece, is described as "soft and comforting" and wonderfully "interactive." Which is more than you can say for most of the women you meet on eHarmony.
Petco, incidentally, makes its own line of toys. My favorite is a very cute creature made of rope, called the Bungee Toy Dog. It's made with "safe, natural" vegetable dye and non-toxic materials, which means it's fun to play with. And if you chop it up and add milk to it, it has more nutrition than a bowl of Kix.
This store also sells something called the Sheep/Dog Toy, which is either two sweet toys, a sheep and a dog, or some unholy spawn which is the result of a sheep and a dog. And who thought it would be okay for them to spend the night together? This is clearly forbidden in the Old Testament.
There are any number of wildlife creatures available here, as well. Many are part of the "Jungle Safari" collection. According to their description, they are "perfect for a game of hunt and fetch safari in the jungles of your yard." If you are playing in the yard, remember there's a lion, a tiger and a giraffe. There's no coyote included in the package. So if one wants to play, take precautions. And if you can, get something in writing beforehand.
Petco also makes a very cute Plush Monkey Toy, which is guaranteed to "promote that special bond you share with your pet." If after this, you want to take this to the next level, that's up to you. Still, I should warn you: an encounter group with your dog sounds good on paper, but ultimately, it's disappointing No matter how much you beg, they just won't share!
I finally bought Happy a yellow, rubbery bone and a woolly lion. Somehow, these things seemed inadequate, so I took a trip to Rye's Pet Pantry Warehouse. Here, I got my dog a homemade cookie, too, thinking if I fed him enough and got him full, he might not complain about the paucity of toys.
It was a decent theory. But I'll need to come up with something better next time, or else Happy won't have a thing to say to me.