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Pet Life

Reviewed - three pet products recommended by experts


We asked three owners to put some of the best items for your dog’s mental and physical health (as recommended by the experts) to the test. Here’s how they stacked up…


Dog

The Petbaby chew toy, from £7

What our expert said: ‘This rubber ball chew is made of nontoxic, durable rubber and is safe for your pet to grind on,’ says Petplan veterinary expert, Brian Faulkner. ‘And it has the added benefit of also helping to clean your dog’s teeth. Its colourful design is perfect for playing fetch and recall games. It’s also a great training tool, as rewards can be placed in the ball’s grooves. Plus, because your dog will need to puzzle out how to get at the treats, its a great toy for keeping his mind and body busy.’

What our reviewer said: ‘Our seven-year-old Miniature Poodle, Kizzie, has had great fun with this toy,’ says owner Philip Holt. ‘Placing treats inside it is a great idea, and the design isn’t too rough on her mouth but is still robust enough to last. Overall, it’s a great product, which definitely kept her busy (at least until all the treats ran out!).’

Dog

The Vetbed original pet blanket, from £15

What our expert said: ‘Dogs like having a sense of familiarity and comfort, and this is even more important as they get older’ says Inga MacKellar, a certified clinical animal behaviourist. ‘Vetbeds are ideal to use at home or when out and about. They’re light, so can be easily transported and can be thrown onto sofas, car seats and even the floor of friends’ homes or in the pub. In these kinds of unfamiliar environments, the Vetbed can be especially effective at helping your dog to feel more at home and settled. Its thin, fleece-like design is great for warmer months but can be folded over for extra comfort on cold days. As an added bonus, Vetbeds are also hypoallergenic and very easy to wash.’

What our reviewer said: ‘Winter, our nine-year-old dog, loves a long run and then sleeping the day away, so I had high hopes for the Vetbed,’ says owner Chris Lee. ‘I put it in her favourite spot near to the radiator but it took her a few days to get used to it, which may have been due to its “new product” smell. At first she’d only sit on it for brief periods, and would then drag it out of the way. But it’s now a firm part of her sleeping routine and she happily curls up on it. We love how lightweight it is, and that it’s easy to pick up and go when we need to.’

Dog

Anco Roots dog chew, from £6

What our expert said: ‘Anco Roots are untreated wood chews harvested from tree roots. They’re eco-friendly, durable and won’t splinter, and I’ve found that dogs really love their flavour,’ says Rosie Bescoby, a clinical animal behaviourist. ‘Chewing and gnawing are natural behaviours for dogs, and provide stimulation and enrichment. An Anco Root will gently exercise your dog’s jaws, as well as his joints as he holds and manipulates the root. It’s also safe for your pet’s teeth, and acts as a natural toothbrush rich in vitamins and minerals.’

What our reviewer said: ‘Layla, our playful 10-year-old Boxer, is obsessed with three yellow rubber rings that she’ll chase on walks or chew at home,’ says owner Andrew Ronay. ‘We had hoped that the Anco Root would tempt her away from her usual toys, and give us a broader range of items to use during playtime. Unfortunately, other than sniffing at the root, Layla showed no interest in it and wouldn’t stray from her rings. However, the root would be a great alternative for dogs that like to chase or chew sticks, as its clear it won’t splinter and is much safer for a pet’s mouth.’


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