Review: Our Pet Parents Tried These Cat and Dog Products
Here's the inside scoop!
Photo via Mario Arango on iStock
Love to spoil your pets? Us too. Before you drop even more dough on them, check out our firsthand reviews of these dog and cat products the StackSocial team took home and tried ourselves. You can get the inside scoop on whether or not your pup or kitty might like them and score a great deal while you're at it.
Interactive Self-Balancing Cat Toy
Reviewed by Amanda
When I say my cats are special, I’m not praising them: I mean, as a kid, I was allowed to have one “barn cat” and two weeks later, she had three kittens. The family of four is currently transitioning into being indoor kitties, but finding ways to keep them entertained, especially when I’m not around, hasn’t been easy.
My cats love anything that moves, so this balancing feather toy seemed worth a shot. It arrived super fast and only required attaching the ball or feather ends to the base. So far, my cats love the feather the most, but the ball is a nice option to withstand my cats’ claw attacks.
Did it take some catnip for them to be intrigued? Yes. The toy itself also has a built-in compartment and catnip ball where I added some fresh leaves. Once my cats understood that it was a toy (and not something to be scared of!), they’ve been crazy into it. I’ve even caught them playing with it when I’m not around—which was my goal!
My cats will disagree, but my favorite part of the toy is that it doesn’t require power or batteries. It’s self-leveling so, as my cats paw at it, it moves back into place on its own and intrigues them even more.
If you have cats who could use a little extra entertainment, this is an effective and affordable option!
Get the interactive self-balancing cat toy with feather and ball attachments for $20 (reg. $39).
Interactive Balance Feather Cat Toy
With a Feather & Ball, This Interactive Toy Keeps Your Cat Entertained and Active at the Same Time
The Complete Guide to Puppy & Dog Training Bundle
Reviewed by Brandon
Last spring, my partner and I adopted our first puppy and named him Cookie. An Australian shepherd, Cookie needs a lot of attention, a lot of exercise, and a lot of stimulation. While we love his temperament, it does make training challenging. We’ve been a bit lost and overwhelmed on how to deal with his excessive barking, leash tugging, and general obedience, so recently, we enrolled in these online dog training classes.
I have to say, instructor Sharon Bolt makes her expertise apparent from the get-go, and she personalizes the experience in such a way that you don’t feel the distance of remote learning. In the Natural Remedies for Health & Dog Training course, Bolt shares background about her experiences with dogs that changed her career. She also shares a summary of what to expect from the course and then gives extensive breakdowns of herbs that can be beneficial for dogs and how homeopathy can help with training and proper care.
Bolt is a well-known dog behavior expert who has long been a BBC radio personality with a number of books, audio works, and videos on dog training.
When it came to the specific challenges we’ve been facing, the course Leash Training: Stop Pulling on the Leash was a massive help. Again, she personalizes the beginning of the course and then dives into video breakdowns on how to get your dog to walk by your side, how to get them to come back when off the leash, and more. There are general explanations and then more specific ones with titles like This Video Shows You Exactly What To Do, which I admit, I needed!
Overall we feel quite empowered by the classes in the bundle, and it’s nice that we have lifetime access so we can refer back as we need reminders, tips, and encouragement. And cost wise, this is proving to be a lot more effective and easy on the wallet than any in-person experience we’ve been able to find.
If you’re curious about the benefits, it’s an affordable experiment.
Grab the Complete Guide to Puppy & Dog Training bundle while it’s on sale for $30 (reg. 320).
The Complete Guide to Puppy & Dog Training Bundle
Your 12-Hour Guide on Getting Along with Your Paw Friends Taught by Dog & Puppy Expert, Sharon Bolt
Laser Robot Toy for Cats
Reviewed by Donna
I work remotely and have a young cat who loves to play. She often meows at me while I’m working and sometimes even lies down across my keyboard to get me to stop what I’m doing and play with her. As adorable as it is, it’s not productive.
This little cat laser toy is great because it is self-moving, which means I can put it on and let kitty play for a while I focus on work. It features three different modes to shake things up, plus it's made to be scratch- and bite-resistant, so all will be well if your cat decides to play a little rough.
If your cat likes to chase lasers, this toy is a hands-free way to give your furry girl or boy some exercise while you use your hands to get stuff done. And, if you need to leave the house for any length of time, the auto-timer gives kitty a mid-day play session while you’re not there.
It's been a big help on my busiest days, and it's not a huge investment, so even if it doesn't turn out to be a long-term solution, it's certainly entertaining for us both.
Try this laser robot toy for your cat while it's on sale for $30 (reg. $39).
Cat Laser Robot Toy
Keep Your Pets Entertained with This Interactive Toy Featuring 2 Speeds Design & Auto-Timer
DogTV: Lifetime Subscription
Reviewed by Carly
My idea of relaxation is plopping myself onto the couch in front of the TV. So when my husband and I recently added a four-legged family member to our household, we hoped little Sally would like to relax the same way...and we lucked out with a snuggler! To make sure she could really appreciate TV time, we decided to invest in some entertainment just for her puppy-dog eyes (which are two different colors, by the way).
DogTV, the first television network made specifically for our furry friends, is available for $150 through this lifetime deal.
Want to find out how DogTV works? Check out Carly's full DogTV product review.
DOGTV: Lifetime Subscription
TV for Dogs? Yes! Really! Keep Your Dog Happy Throughout the Day with Video Content Specially Designed for Your Fur Babies
Smart & Interactive Self-Rotating Teaser Ball for Cats
Reviewed by Jessica
Despite what their sleep schedule may tell you, cats do need to stay active throughout the day, whether it’s playing with another cat or with their human. However, that can be tough with busy jobs, families, and all the other responsibilities that tend to collect.
Enter the Smart & Interactive Self-Rotating Teaser Ball. This thing is an automated cat toy that your pet can play with sans human interference. Here's how it works...
The teaser ball really is fully automated, so there’s not much for you to do. I charged it for about an hour with the micro-USB cable that came in the box because I was impatient, but 90 minutes of charging gives it up to four hours of activity.
One thing to know: The LEDs come on when you plug it in. So the adorable kitty face on the front cover? It glows a fairly menacing red.
Once it was time to play, I held down the very subtle power button for two seconds. The LEDs kicked in again, this time purples, greens, and blues. The directions say your cat just has to swat it to activate it, but I wanted to see if that was true.
When I swatted it, the little ball came to life and jumped out of my hand. It gets bonus points for being durable because it rolled away across my laminate floor without harm.
Initially, my cats were wary of this somewhat loud, rolling mechanical device. One of my cats is a bold one-eyed fluffy beast. The other is cautious and alarmingly smart. My one-eyed cat has issues catching moving targets, but the noise from this little toy might be a bonus for older or disabled cats because he found it and immediately smacked it under the couch.
I was ready to fish the thing out, but it came rolling over on its own. The design of the ball looks a bit like a music note, and a lower-to-the-ground sofa might have caught the flipping arm, but mine didn’t.
Instead, the ball escaped just in time for my other cat to spring across the room, grab it in her mouth, and swing it like a crocodile in the Nile. They kept going like that for 30 minutes before the toy automatically shut off.
It looks simple and cute, but this cat toy has really changed things around my home. One of my cats is a little overweight, but she’s been more active than I’ve seen her in weeks. And the other one finally has a toy he can track without depth perception. I think they’ve even started looking out for the little orange felt bag the toy came with.
With two cats and a busy life, getting this has taken a lot off my mind, and it’s a riot to watch them use it.
Pick up your own interactive self-rotating cat toy for $29 (reg. $32).
Smart & Interactive Self-Rotating Ball Cat Teaser
This 360° Rotating Ball is Activated by Just a Claw Touch & Will Have Your Cat Pouncing and Chasing
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