Category Archives: Product Reviews

My Dog Is A Toy Destroyer Challenge – Week Three

ryker-ruffwear-week3-4983This is the third and final week’s update on the Huckama™ by Ruffwear.  It’s been a thrilling three weeks and we thought that our hoard of hoodlums was going to do a number on this amazing toy but we were totally wrong!  Three weeks of abuse from Ryker with a handful of time by the rest of the hoard has proven insufficient on sending this toy to dog toy heaven and we can’t wait to go and get the Turnup™ and see how the crew likes this option as well.

As with the previous weeks, we were asked to send in a bit of information in regard to specifically asked questions (many of which were briefly touched on in previous weeks) and to add in any possible improvements to the toy and this is what we had to say:

Hard to believe it’s been three weeks already with the Huckama™. The ryker-ruffwear-week3-4952Huckama™ has held up exceedingly well for my toy destroying, brindle monster and I’m very, very pleased with it. We are actually going to be getting the Turnup™ to give around as well, and spoke with a few folks who were looking for sturdy toys while we were out shopping for dog food to head on over to for the Huckama™ or the Turnup™ for their toy destroyers too!

I don’t have enough time to be able to write down how much I absolutely adore this toy. It has been one of the sturdiest rubber toys we’ve had the chance to own and love. I can definitely see buying more in the future when they finally manage to kill this one (which will actually take quite some time for once!). The splits haven’t seemed to really progress any further but he’s been a little more gentle on it this week since it’s been so chilly out that he hasn’t been outside beating the orange off of it.

Durability is one of the biggest problems we’ve found with toys and we’ve tried just about everything on the market – but this toy has been a hit – not only with Ryker, but also with the rest of our hoard who he has politely shared it with on an occasion. So, along with being durable, it has had some major curb appeal even with our pickiest dogs.ryker-ruffwear-week3-4954

I really did try and find something I’d change, but other than having color choice options (it’s a girlie thing!), I’ve got nothing. This toy has the perfect shape and texture to it to be appealing and strong at the same time. The holes to stuff goodies into means I can turn this into not just a toss and go toy but also a working puzzle toy that isn’t too hard to figure out but provides entertainment none the less. It has been an absolute blast to have this toy in our house and I know Ryker will be looking forward to many more months (heck, maybe even years!) of abuse with it!

So there you have it, folks.  Three weeks of durability and product testing is done.  We have to say that this was one of the best contests we were lucky to have been selected for and would definitely recommend anyone who wants durable products to check out the good folks over at Ruffwear for just about anything they make.  An official review will be up in a few days as well so be sure to keep checking back in!

My Dog Is A Toy Destroyer Challenge: Week Two

ryker-ruffwear-week2-4922We’re onto Week Two of the ‘My Dog Is A Toy Destroyer’ challenge and things are going swimmingly well. The toy has held up to the rigorous abuse of not just Ryker but the rest of the Work-A-Bull crew (when Ryker opts to share this delightful toy!) and held up beautifully. It has proven to be an amazing addition to the toy basket and remains a top chosen toy by Mr. Toy Snob who has his favorites.

Here’s what we had to say directly to our friends over at Ruffwear for our time with the Huckama™ for Week Two:

We’ve definitely had a fun second week with the Huckama. As the time has passed and the “new toy smell” has disappeared (with it being carried *everywhere*), Ryker’s become more and more obsessed with it and spends most of his time with it in his mouth or near him in some fashion (usually under his chin if he’s resting). He has it with him pretty much all the time. It has, ultimately, become his favorite toy to the point he hasn’t even bothered to shred his sister’s stuffy toys that she covets.ryker-ruffwear-week2-4951

We’ve been using the toy lately as a reward for good obedience as an option from the ball on the string or the treats we normally use. With his intensity toward the toy, it has made for some beautiful heeling work in terms of focus – something I can definitely appreciate since it’s always a struggle to keep his focus!

We’ve been including a bit of “work” into his time with the Huckama using the Biscuit Buddy goodies we got along with the Huckama and, occasionally, a dab of peanut butter around one or two of the holes as an added tease – especially when we want him to relax for a little bit. Long after the goodies are gone, he’ll still happily chew on it.

We’ve gotten a bit of cracking going around a few of the holes from his continued gnawing but it is definitely holding up very well with his continual chewing and gnawing ryker-ruffwear-week2-4940on it – something I’m very, very impressed with as many other toys have failed once the cracking started and he took advantage of the tiny weakness – which hasn’t seemed to happen with the Huckama™!

With coming into Week Three and wrapping up our reporting time, we’ll be adding a review that you will be able to find on the drop down options at the top of the page. We expect more rigorous time with the Huckama™ and many, many more months to come but who beats this challenge will be decided next week. Will it be Ryker or the Huckama™?

My Dog Is A Toy Destroyer Challenge: Week One

ryker-ruffwear2014-4806Recently, we entered a contest with Ruffwear Performance Dog Gear contest to try out one of their durable rubber toys and were lucky enough to get selected by the folks who were choosing the winners. Ryker, along with four other lucky dogs, get to try out the Huckama or the Turnup toy for three whole weeks (and we get to keep this awesome toy if it survives!) while writing weekly updates on the durability, canine interest level and how we generally feel about the toy while providing pictures and/or videos of our dogs enjoying their goodies. It’s definitely a challenge that Ryker is going to thoroughly enjoy for the next three weeks and at the end, there will be a review made of the overall toy for Work-A-Bull readers to enjoy as well which will also include links back to these three weeks of toy destroying fun!

Ryker was selected to get the Huckama™ by the awesome folks over at Conservation Canines. Let me tell you, I was very, very excited to get this of the two options because of all of the little hiding spots I could put goodies into. Ryker, however, was even more excited and continually attempted to snatch the packaging from me while I was opening it for him to have a chance at it since we got it later in the week than the rest of the Toy Destroyer challengers.

Here is the write-up we sent over to the good folks at Ruffwear in regard to our first week with the Huckama™ toy for Week One!

“When I first opened our package, I was gleefully surprised at the Huckama. Not only is it larger than your standard tennis ball (something I worry about him swallowing if he chews it ryker-ruffwear2014-4839up!), it has holes and is hollow on the inside – which makes it PERFECT for stuffing small bits of treat into to provide additional entertainment. It’s a nice, soft rubber but it was very difficult for me to compress so I am guessing it may actually hold up to him for a while!

Ryker was extremely excited to play with the toy. He repeatedly attempted to steal it out of my hands before I was even able to get the packaging off and attempted to help me remove it from the packaging before I was ready. When we tossed it, it bounced erratically and kept him guessing on where it would go. This kept the entertainment factor up high for him and kept him wanting it more. Once he was finally out of breath from throwing it in the air by himself, I stuffed a few goodies inside which gave him the opportunity to work them out of the holes in the toy. (Even with his continued chewing, there were no teeth marks or punctures!)

Even though we got a late start on playing with our toy, I will definitely give it a five on durability and resiliency. The fun shape and added holes are allowing for lots of rambunctious play with and continuous entertainment. He definitely isn’t bored and hasn’t let any of the other dogs near it – which is mega praise from him as he doesn’t usually hoard ryker-ruffwear2014-4884toys and readily shares with them.”

Even though we got it later in the week, we made the most of it (and the other goodies we got in our package too – which included a Hover Craft™ Frisbee too) and Ryker got to help break in the new house’s yard while doing what he does best – destroying toys!

If you want to follow along with the other “My Dog Is A Toy Destroyer” challengers, click here. We wish Ari the Dutch Shepherd, Henrietta the Australian Cattle Dog mix, Dozer the Boxer and Maya the Chesapeake Bay Retriever the best of luck in the challenge for the remaining two weeks!

Product Review: Mad Dog Metalworks

mdmtags-december2013-7777Having an ID tag on your dog is one of the most basic and most important aspects of responsible pet ownership.  You can always go to your local chain pet supplier and get one of their generic tags with your name, address and phone number.  It’ll look like every other dog’s on the block.  It’ll still serve its purpose but the question is for how long?  Most mass produced tags don’t have a long lived life and tend to warp or get destroyed fairly quickly (especially with incredibly active dogs!).  I have found, thankfully, that there is a better alternative out there when it comes to both durability and purpose in an ID tag with a fashionable flare through one company – Mad Dog Metalworks.

We ordered our original tags quite some time ago (we’re talking years here) from Mad Dog Metalworks because we wanted a less expensive tag than some of the hand stamped tag makers out there with the same durability and customization options.  We definitely got that and then some when we got our product (which was a little lengthy of a wait due to a MASSIVE sale that was running in tandem when we bought ours).  These tags have held up against a dog562822_10151117470874828_244813446_n who hates tags and likes to chew on them (Mika) and dogs who literally drag them through the mud and muck or running them over objects that would have gouged and damaged lesser tags.

Despite the abuse the original five have put their tags through, they have held up.  They may be a little worse for the wear, have pits and a few gashes in them but they’ve held up and are still legible and gorgeous and they were worth every penny that was spent on them – which is actually only about half of many other tag makers at about $20 for the Rockstar tag which we are featuring in this blog (prices vary for other tags).

So, if you’re looking for some custom bling while doing your part as a responsible pet owner make sure you check out Mad Dog Metalworks on Facebook or at their Etsy store.  Be sure to tell them that the Work-A-Bull crew sent you while you’re at it and check out their other awesome products while you’re there!

Product Review: Brown Beggers Treats (and Contest!)


The search for quality treats, chewies and toys seems to be a never ending process for a doting dog owner.  It is a task I am very familiar with since I place myself into that category with my five lovely and tenacious terrier brats looking to me to keep them entertained whenever, heaven forbid, boredom should strike.  Thankfully, the good folks over at have come up with just the right solution for entertainment and mental enrichment with their exclusive line of goodies that are aptly named Brown Beggers!brownbeggars-blogreview-september2013-1643

We were one of the lucky few chosen to review these delightful goodies with our canine crew and it made for five very happy dogs when the UPS man showed up at the house with goodies just for them!  This “hard” job turned out to be a lavish vacation that teased their terrier taste buds and gave us humans a pleasant respite from the typical household chaos that always ensues when new goodies came into the picture!  Thankfully, the array of natural goodies we received for the ravenous hoard to test kept them busy for quite some time (and they even allowed me to snap a few photos while they enjoyed their goodies!) – especially while we were at the dog show that weekend!

brownbeggars-blogreview-september2013-1663We were sent the Brown Begger’s Chew Sampler which consists of a plethora of hand selected goodies from their premium, all natural treat bar in the size dedicated for your particular pooch (we selected the large since the pack tends to be rough and tumble with smaller items and received the two bones pictured in this blog) and The 144 – which is 144 inches of awesome jerky treat broken up into three foot pieces and is made of beef or pork.  This delightful treat  can be broken down into smaller pieces (Very easily too!  No fuss or muss there and it wasn’t greasy or gross but it did produce a few crumbles with our mess rescue guy!) for different size dogs to enjoy, use in training, etc.

We, especially the dogs, couldn’t have been happier.  The biggest hit was the meaty bones in thebrownbeggars-blogreview-september2013-1754 Chew Sampler but they were rather thrilled to get everything they could get their naughty little paws on.  We would highly recommend this to both working dog and pet dogs everywhere because of the selection and quality of the products included and the price is quite a steal too!  We will definitely be ordering more in the future (especially for all the doggie family members we have in our circle!).

Now that we’ve told you about how awesome these treats are, how would you like to win your own?  We’re quite sure you would and thanks to the folks over at, we’re able to offer you a chance to win the same goodies we got to try (in your dog’s size!) with the added bonus of a 30% off coupon as well!  How cool is that?!

If you’re interested, head on over to our Facebook page and drop us a comment and photo showing us how much your pups would love to give Brown Beggers a try.  The photo/comment with the most likes (so share and have your friends like our page too!) will earn you and your pup(s) some goodies.

Fine Print: US Residents Only. No P.O. Boxes. will ship the products direct to the winner who will be contacted within 48 hours of the contest end.  Contest will run from Friday, September 20th until Friday, September 27th.
Siren can't believe her good fortune that she was in the right place and the right time to get to try these goodies with the Work-A-Bull crew!

Siren can’t believe her good fortune that she was in the right place and the right time to get to try these goodies with the Work-A-Bull crew!

This post is sponsored by I am being compensated to share my thoughts on the Brown Beggers treats, but the opinions expressed on are my own and I only share information I feel is relevant to my readers.

Product Review: Paco Collars

chicagotrip-july2013-7399If you’re anything like me, dear reader, you are a “dog stuff” collector.  If it’s out there and useful, it must be had.  This manner of thinking is especially true with the bling that my dogs wear daily.  After all good PR work is even better with a well-dressed dog, right?  Sometimes, though, this can be pickle if you have so many nice things because a certain collar company does sample sales with discounted products on their Facebook page!

I started following Paco Collars many years ago when they initially started in 2002 thanks to their own dog and the namesake of their company, Paco, a rescued pit bull.  (Sadly, Paco passed away in 2009 and is missed by all who knew him.)  Thanks to the recommendations of a friend, I took the plunge and bought one.  That was the beginning to the end when it came to my snobbery of quality collars too!

Paco collars offers fully customized collars – both hand carved and/or blinged out with gems, stones, conchos, studs and spots.  They are made directly in a small, family owned business in Berkeley, California with a dedicated staff of very knowledgeable people to create the collar vision of your dreams.  Along with custom collars they offer an entire line of collars from simple Duo sporting the "Duo" which was named after him.and sophisticated with their Signature Series to more elaborate Xdog if you aren’t comfortable designing your own and any collar can be converted into a martingale for an additional twenty dollars!

Paco doesn’t just make collars either.  They have a whole range of customizable products for dogs, cats and their people.  With harnesses, leashes and kitty collars for the critters and bracelets, belts, key fobs and even coffee cozies for the people, one should never run out of options to choose from.  (And they offer classes across the US if you want to try your hand at collar making too!)

I cannot say enough good things about Paco collars and really can’t say a bad word about them except the fact that they are irresistible and I’m always finding more collars to lust after.  For some folks, they may be a bit spendy (with prices ranging from $30 and up for collars) but for Ryker showing in his Paco Collarquality latigo leather gear, they can’t be beat.

Thankfully, though, I am not alone in my obsession thanks to the Paco Collars Not So Annonymous Facebook page dedicated to those of us who can’t seem to get enough Paco gear.  There you can find gently used Paco and non-Paco gear (for those trying to support their habit of buying another Paco!) for sale as well as a plethora of ideas for a future Paco collar owner.

I hope, if you decide to check out Paco Collars, that you’ll enjoy the quality gear as much as I do and if you do decide to, make sure you punch in “WORKABULL” into the coupon code box to receive 5% off of your entire purchase courtesy of your friends here at Work-A-Bull (and this coupon is good for every purchase because Paco collars are like potato chips and you can’t just have one!).

Product Review: Indigo Moon Fibers Custom Knit Hat

rykerinrykerhat-august2013-9836I recently saw a photo knit hat fashioned after a Rottweiler being worn by a friend of mine.  I, of course, had to know where the heck it had come from and if they could do a pit bull-based one because it is often a pain in the butt to find items like that with my breed of choice as the theme.   Little did I know she not only would but made them based off of your own personal dog!  (How utterly awesome is that?!)  I totally had to purchase one as soon as possible.

As soon as my friend Lori, the one with the Rottie hat, gave me the link to the Indigo Moon Fibers Facebook page and I posted a picture of my boy, Ryker, on there and asked to order one.  I knew he’d be a touch difficult because he’s brindle and has flashy white markings.  Pam, the owner of Indigo Moon Fibers, said it would take a few weeks since she was a bit backed up with custom orders but assured me she’d get to me as soon as possible.

While she’d said it would be a few weeks, it wasn’t nearly as long as I had expected with a custom order.  She messaged me during the process to find out a bit more about his color scheme – was he more a chocolate brown and black or a black and reddish brown brindle?  I described what I felt was the best answer and she went to work.  Let me tell you, she nailed it perfectly.  Getting his brindle pattern identical wasn’t going to happen but she nailed the brindling as close as it could be.  It was truly amazing.  (Ryker, of course, was not amused at his likeness being worn and attempted to snatch it from me when I showed him the hat.)

The hat itself is incredibly well made and the cost for a custom item is really, really reasonable ($35 shipped).  It fits perfectly and the yard she used to knit with is very, very soft.  I washed it on delicate (because I accidentally dropped it in a muck pile while visiting the shelter to show it off while doing photos…oops!) dried on a low setting.  It handled it well and still looks just like when I had opened the package from her without any frizzing.

This hat actually makes me long for the cooler months that are coming so I can wear it more often.  Until then, I will wear it at any chance I can and it has already taken up residence in my car so I have it when I need it.  I truly can’t say enough good things about it and can’t wait to order a couple more of the other dogs so I can change them out occasionally.