Product Review: West Paw Design Toys

I used to give my dogs a ton of toys.  They would get damaged but since Piper and Jack usually just tossed them around and played the odd sedate game of tug, the toys lasted for a bit.  And then along came Leo and he seemed intent on destroying all of them.  Not just destroying them but annihilating them.  I was worried that he would swallow rope fibres and bits of fabric so all soft toys went into the garbage with the odd rope toy that would only get action when I was there to supervise.  They do have several antler toys to chew on; I love antler because it’s tough but they can’t break chunks off like with bone.  I’ve also found that most bones have a coating on them that disagrees with Piper’s, shall we say delicate, constitution.

After reading a review of West Paw Design from Ecohug, I set out to check them out for myself.  Turns out, the dogs had already received one as a gift.  It has held up so well with all the rough play that I have since bought a few more.

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Leo: king of all the toys.  Jack was ready for a nap.

Now I want to state for the record that I have received absolutely no compensation or consideration for these products.  These are items that I have purchased myself or the dogs received as a gift.

According to their website, West Paw Design is based in Montana and was founded in 1996 when the owner, Spencer Williams, purchased a small pet toy company with the goal to make safe and highest quality dog and cat toys.  In 2016, Forbes named the company “One of the Best Small Companies” in America.  I have noticed that most pet toys are made in China.  I’m not looking at it from a protectionist standpoint (I am Canadian after all) but from a quality control standpoint.  And the toys are made from recycled materials and can then be recycled.  It’s a small thing but I like it.

I have three models of toys from West Paw Design: the Bumi (shaped like a “Z”) and the Hurley (shaped like a bone) from the Zogoflex line and the Wox (looks like a 3-legged stool) from the Zogoflex Air line.

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Clockwise from top left: Wox, Bumi, and Hurley.  You can just see the damage on the bottom of the Bumi.

Price:  4/5

These aren’t the cheapest toys out there but I would rather spend a bit more for a toy that’s going to last and not hurt my pups.

Toughness: 5/5

We got the Wox more than six months ago and it shows no damage even though it has been in the middle of some serious games of tug.  The Hurley is too small for tug but gets lots of chew time from all three of them.  The only one that does have some damage to it is the Bumi.  There are some small splits forming on the tip of one end but not deep enough to retire the toy.  In fact the splits are just surface damage at this point.  Considering that Jack and Leo play absolutely ferocious games of tug with it, it’s not surprising that there would be some damage to it.  And when I say they play tug, they put every ounce of their little bodies behind it.  I have stood on other toys and Leo has pulled hard enough to move me.  So imagine two of them tugging like that in opposite directions.

Give up the Funk: 5/5

The toys get a bit grubby from being on the floor but it does not get the funk that rope or other rubber or plastic toys get.  If I had a dishwasher I would test the assertion that they are dishwasher-safe but I have tossed them in the sink and cleaned them up.  I have first hand experience with the lack of smell: I was playing tug with Leo and the Wox.  He had one leg in his mouth.  I was holding one leg and was down on the floor pretending to bite onto one leg.  No stink from the Wox, even when Leo shook his head and that last pesky leg clubbed me in the eye.  But since there was some give to it, hey no black eye.

Fun Factor:  Crank that up to 11!

I have been know to occasionally toss the toys through the house (ahem).  They bounce in unpredictable directions, especially the Wox, which adds to the fun.  They apparently float although I haven’t taken them outside to test that but since they are so easy to clean, I would not hesitate to take them outside.

Overall rating:  A great series of toys that can hold up to rough play and is well worth the expense.

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Piper enjoying a moment with a toy.  Jack waiting until he can grab it.

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Have to chew in comfort.  Na-mes-toy.

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