Gemma's top ten products for Daisy and Sam

The pooches in the Just Dogs team are super lucky.  They have access to lots of different goodies and they get the benefit of road testing new products too :-) We all have our favourites though and this month each of the team are going to pull together a top ten favourite items with some info on why we/the dogs like them so much.
I have pulled together my list (I have cheated slightly and amalgamating some items together as I really struggled to list just ten - there were at least five others I would have liked to have included but had to draw the line somewhere!):
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1. Treat dispensing toys - particularly the Pickle Pocket and the Kong

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We LOVE treat dispensing toys at Just Dogs.  They are a great way to keep your dog entertained and stimulated.  They are a safe option for leaving your dog with when you go out and they can be good for helping to slow your dog down with their meals if they bolt them too.
Sam is not a huge fan of the Classic Kong toy (the most popular treat toy around) but he absolutely loves the Starmark Pickle Pocket.  It is another super tough treat toy but the treats are accessed differently to the likes of a Kong.  It can still be stuffed and frozen though.
Daisy, on the other hand, loves a frozen Kong and we like to play around with the filling for her as much as possible!  For more information on why Kong's are the best selling toy around check out our Blog article " Why Kong is King"
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4911halti_training_lead_3My lead of choice when walking Daisy and Sam.  They are great, versatile, durable leads with a soft webbing which is gentle on the hand.  I like that they can be shortened or lengthened depending on the walk. In the town we tend to have them on a shorter lead but they can be extended out to give more sniffing and exploring room in quieter areas where we may not be able to let them off lead.  They are also good for use with heelwork training when we need to work with a loose/slacker lead.  They can also be hooked around the waist if needed or can double up as an emergency coupling lead if you need to walk the two dogs at once on it.
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Again we know this is a cheat as we have included two here but we had to include Sam and Daisy's favourite toys!
Soppy Dog is certainly Sam's favourite anyway.  He loves a "baby" and the bigger and more cuddly the better!  Soppy Dog has done many a journey in Sam's mouth and for a soft toy he has survived better than most (he would not be suited to a dog that likes to chew a lot though).
Daisy will never be parted from her Cyber Squeaky ball on a walk and as soon as it comes out her tail just does not stop wagging.  It is more durable and less soggy than a tennis ball and it bounces really well.  It is not totally indestructible (if a power chewer was left to their own devices with it I don't imagine it would survive) but it is pretty durable and, unless lost, it will last months for Daisy without breaking.
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pro_177The all time favourite training treat for the pups.  Soft, very meaty, high quality ingredients and they can be easily broken into little slithers to spin them out and save over treating if we are doing a longer training session.  They are a moist treat so the pack needs to be kept sealed and they are not ideal to leave in a pocket over longer periods or they dry out and don't cut the mustard as much with the dogs as when they are fresh!

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5. Venison Marrow Bones

jd_2056Sam loves a marrow bone once or twice a week and we find that when we combine this with regular toothbrushing it is good for helping to keep his teeth clean.  They are air dried so less likely to splinter than a roasted bone (which we would not recommend).  You do have to supervise your dogs very carefully with this type of chew though as if a larger piece breaks off it could be a choking hazard.  Also there is a very small risk of cracking a tooth if your dog bears down very hard.  If you want more information on balancing up the pros and cons of different types of chews have a wee look at "To chews or not to chews" blog article.
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6. Harness

10440795_811701712187452_6299706845074711246_nDaisy has a consistently good heel but Sam can sometimes pull a bit when we go to different places and if we can't spend the time there doing a bit of heelwork training we prefer to use a harness so that the strain is taken off his neck if he does pull.  We have had the same Ancol harness for him for years and it is still going strong.  It is a good fit and he seems comfy in it. We sometimes use the front ring to attached the double ended halti training lead to if we are working on loose lead walking training too as it can be useful for balancing Sam out. If you have a finer coated dog they may be better in a fleece covered harness like the Xtra dog harness but for Sam this traditional nylon t - style harness works really well :-)

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7.  Natural Instinct food
WDChicken__64258.1405326222.1280.1280At Just Dogs we are a great believer that there is a not a one size fits all best type of food for every dog.  What works for one may not be an ideal solution for another but we do promote high quality dry, wet and raw food options.  Daisy and Sam always did very well on their high quality dry food for a number of years however Daisy was continually suffering from chronic ear infections that never fully cleared up (even after repeated antibiotics and steroids and ear flushes from the vets).  We decided to try them on a raw diet to allow us to do an effective exclusion diet to help us discover if Daisy perhaps had a food intolerance that was causing the problem and four weeks into introducing the food her ear issues clearer up completely and she hasn't had any problems since (over a year later). She seems to have an intolerance to grains.  If you would like more information on the different foods we stock in the shop feel free to pop in for a chat anytime.  A raw food diet could be a good option for your dog or, alternatively, we have lots of other high quality food options available.
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10411907_847522401938716_7564874912345313074_nThese are our, keep in the pocket, favourite training treat.  They are small, not smelly, healthy and low fat but our dogs really love them.  They are not as high value for all dogs as the natures menu treats above (but we always have samples available in the shop if you would like to try them).  A large pouch is £9.90 but you get over 1000 treats so plenty bang for your buck!
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9. Practical coats - Drying Coats and Hotterdog Fleeces
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Okay, so we know this is two products but, hopefully, because they are both clothing products you will forgive us for wanting to include them both.
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We only got the drying coats for our two this winter but they have been well used and we are really pleased with the purchase!  They are great for popping on them in the car after a wet walk or when we get home.  They are also really handy for popping on them after a clip and bath (Sam doesn't like the hairdrier!!!).  They are bit more expensive than some drying coats but they are very absorbent and heavy high quality toweling and we have already had ours through the wash a number of times and they come out well!
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The hotterdog jumpers have been well used over the past few years.  They are handy for popping on like a little "house coat" if it is chilly in the house and they are good for using in damp or snowy weather (it helps minimise the number of snowballs on our spaniels coats).  We also find that the snug fit of the fleece seems to calm Sam in a similar way to a Thundershirt.  They go up in four inch increments so occasionally dogs can be in between sizes and we would always suggest trying on your dog before buying if you can.
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The most successful bed we have  had - ever.  For some reason dogs seem to love the cosiness of these beds and Daisy and Sam are no exception.  They are a good price, wash well and are lovely and soft.  After a couple of years of use we recently replaced our spice dots - with another two spice dots.  The dogs just love them so much we didn't want to go for anything else.  The only down side is that they only come in one pattern which may not be to everyone's taste - but the dogs don't seem to mind.
We would love to hear what your top ten doggie products are and why - if it something we don't stock we would love to do more research and your input is so valuable!