Wednesday, July 15, 2009

secrets of a rawhide junkie: the giant shirtball

The act of eating rawhide has evolved into the equivalent of Baxter's magic disappearing act. Watch closely. Blink and you may miss it entirely. It wasn't always quite so speedy, his relationship with knotted bliss. When he first came into our home a chubby freely fed twenty-three pound pup, he didn't know what the stuff even was. He gingerly took his first rawhide from my hand, sniffed it, and left it on the ground while he explored his new backyard, in search of whatever wonderful smell was making his spidey senses tingle.

Settled for a few weeks, he gradually discovered the joys of rawhide but saw it as a pleasure to be taken in small amounts, slowly savored when not squirreled away in what sometimes was plain sight. In those days, he futilely but very cutely attempted to bury his bones in wall to wall carpet, using his nose to mound invisible dirt over his treasure. Sometimes, with a twinkle in his eye, he would check on his rawhide. Sometimes, I'd catch him gnawing on it in the midday sun, but never for long. Rawhide lasted for days.

As weeks turned into months and the pounds melted off his frame thanks to twice daily walks and a regulated feeding schedule, Baxter began burying his rawhide less frequently and eating it more vigorously. Once he became clued in to the fact that the all u can eat buffet was certainly and most definitely closed, rawhide lasted only minutes and a junkie was born. He is now so accomplished in the art of eating rawhide that he can down half a mini dingo treat in under fifteen seconds.

And so we are challenged in finding ways to extend the experience, lest we spend more than seven bucks a week feeding his Habit. Baxter's favorite rawhide consumption extender appeals to his inner doxie, and also helps him burn some calories in the process. Always up for the hunt, I think the giant shirt ball game is a keeper.



video


BTW - Baxter currently clocks in at eight minutes, down from the initial thirty minutes it took him to undo his first giant shirt ball. Of course, back then the six or so tees and towels we used were significantly less hole-y...

8 comments:

mamamouseiam said...

Hmmmmmm, giant shirtball. I imagine one would help to extend the chewy life of a pig's ear as well. Great idea ~ I'm going to dig out some old t-shirts right now!

btw, I must (again) tell you what a handsome doggie your Baxter is. Yup, a real looker. :-)

angie said...

the giant shirt ball is BRILLIANT!!

dachshundluke said...

Love this idea - Dachshund Luke likes to hide his ball in our bed and then do that to our blankets - I am off to find old towels and t-shirts :-)

Twix said...

My Momma and Daddy do that sometimes but they hide the treat in things like their pockets, under their hat, etc. They laugh at me while trying to find it...I know it is somewhere on them just gotta sniff every inch till I narrow it down. I hope they don't see this or I might have to start digging my treats out of a giant shirt ball. Baxter, has your mom ever given you Bully Sticks? They last much longer than rawhide. My mom buys the 12inch ones for me and always gets the fattest one she can find. It could become another addiction for you!
Love and hugs,
Twix

Kalyxcorn said...

it sounds so yummy! mom doesn't give me too many weird treats because of my bout with HGE last year. nobody seems to know what causes hge so she says it's better safe than sorry but personally, i wouldn't mind eating everything and anything! gotta run and nap in the sun! toodles, b

mamamouseiam said...

Thank you Baxter - I received your message. I'll be happy to send you a link to pictures of dear, sweet Schroeder but I'd prefer not making my identity public. (I don't see a way to email you on your blog.) If you'd like to provide an email address via the same way you left your message, please be assured that it won't become public knowledge! If not, I understand that as well. Happy Sunday!
~Schroeder's mom, aka Mama Mouse I Am

Anonymous said...

What a great idea..my mom watched the video and thought you should market it! I kill and try to eat all my stuffed toys! My mom was laughing at how all us doxies are alike. I can't do rawhide made me sick once! There are many other treats my mom could put in that shirt ball! My mom loves your site and thinks you a cutie (I am cuter!) Thanks for making us laugh!-Oliver

Kalyxcorn said...

oh bummer on the rawhide cause it's mighty good stuff! but i totally understand. stay cute!! Luv, B.