Puppies are destructive. There are toys that are built to last and there are toys that simply can’t cope. Now, call me naive, but in a Duracell bunny type test between a bespoke puppy toy and a standard kiddie toy, I’d put my money on the puppy toy. Puppies have razor sharp teeth way before a teething child develops seam ripping gnashers. Puppies are well down the road of manic toy in mouth head shaking while babies are getting to grips with mashed bananas with pureed carrot. And who ever saw a baby leaping into the air, performing a back flip and snatching a soft toy from mid-air. Naturally, the manufacturers of puppy toys have taken all of this low level research into account. Or have they?
Exhibit 1: Beanie Baby Cow. Cost: £4.99. Date of submission to puppy machine: 1st August 2010. Condition of toy: nearly new, no significant wear or tear. Date of complete destruction by puppy machine: 18th November 2010. Condition of toy; ears & horns missing in action, severe facial reconstruction, loss of brain matter, bean stuffing distributed across kitchen floor.
That’s a good three and a half months solid play by a mad Welsh collie with hard core nibbling, ripping and licking skills, at a return on investment of approximately 5p per day’s play.
Exhibit 2: Puppy’s First Christmas Reindeer Toy. Cost; £2.99. Date of submission to puppy machine: 19th November 2010. Condition of toy: brand, spanking new. Date of complete destruction by puppy machine: 19th November 2010. Condition of toy: Stuffing removed; squeaker surgically separated from innards; outer casing soggy, dirty & shredded.
You do the maths. That’s the last puppy toy I’ll be buying. I’ve got an entire childhood’s worth of soft toys to sacrifice to the puppy machine.