Product Review: PetSafe© Busy Buddy Tug-A-Jug

product reviewI work from home, so trying to keep Luna busy so I can stay busy is always a struggle.  I’ve browsed plenty of sites for dog toys or dog puzzles – anything that would keep Luna’s brain (and paws…and mouth) engaged.  After much deliberation, I ultimately purchased the PetSafe© Busy Buddy Tug-A-Jug Toy.

This toy is currently listed as the #1 Selling Item in Pet Rope Toys on Amazon, and with 3 1/2 out of 5 stars, and 1,044 reviews, plus a price point of under $10, Luna and I thought we’d give it a whirl.  What follows is our review.
The concept is pretty simple: a plastic jug holds treats or kibble that you supply, with a double-knotted rope that partially obstructs the jug’s opening and encourages your dog to manipulate the rope to be rewarded with treats.  The neck of the jug has a knobby rubber wrap for what the manufacturer claims cleans teeth.  Although it is marketed, in part, as a “meal dispensing toy” for hurried eaters, I was not purchasing it for that reason, and based on the comments posted to Amazon, this seemed to be the case with a lot of people.

Size options ranged from Extra-Small to Medium/Large.  Since Luna is over 40 pounds, we chose the Medium/Large toy.  The Medium/Large jug is 4 inches in diameter, and about 10 inches tall, not including the length of the rope.

As soon as it arrived, Luna seemed to know that this was a present for her; she wouldn’t even wait for me to take it out of the shipping box.

impatient Luna violating the shipping box


The directions were pretty simple: unscrew the bottom lid (which has “scent holes”), put in treats or kibble, screw the lid back on, and according to the directions, “let the fun begin.”  The holes in the bottom let Luna know that her favorite stinky treats were inside – she just had to figure out how to get to them.  She gnawed at the bottom, pulled on the rope, and even resorted to picking it up by the rope, swinging it around, and dropping it.  This kept Luna busy for about 20 to 30 minutes, and she occasionally dislodged a treat, which she would sometimes fail to see as a result of our dark colored area rug.  I tried to get her to play with her toy on the hardwood floor so she could see the treat fall out, but that didn’t help the huge thuds as she dropped the jug on the floor.

tug-a-jug play


I occasionally moved the rope so a treat would fall out, but for the most part Luna, being the headstrong girl that she is, wanted to do it all by herself.

Her ears crack me up.  We call this her “ear bonnet”:

Luna posing with her toy


After about a half hour, and after finding several stinky treats, Luna had decided enough was enough, and she was going to find something else to occupy her, namely, my hair.

So, in a nutshell:

The Pros

  • Seems to be durable.  PetSafe© packaging states this is made with nontoxic materials similar to those found in bullet-proof glass.  Withstood Luna swinging it around and dropping it on hardwood floors.
  • Kept Luna engaged for about 1/2 hour.
  • Thick knotted rope seems durable, however, there is a disclaimer on the inside of the packaging indicating that, in instances where your dog chews through the rope during play, the manufacturer suggests using a small ball inside the jug which, when rolled back and forth over the jug opening, has the same effect as the knotted rope.
  • Scent holes in the bottom let Luna know that a treat was inside.
  • Translucent purple bottle let Luna see the treats inside.

The Cons

  • The bottle is pretty heavy, about 1 pound, so I can’t imagine it felt too good when Luna bonked herself in the head or her legs when she shook it.
  • Amazon listing says that the item is top-rack dishwasher safe, however, the packaging material stated that this item was hand wash only.
  • There is apparently no warranty, as the package instructs the purchaser to discard the item if it is damaged.
  • The toy is not marketed as a chew toy. Supervision is advised, so I’m not quite sure how much work I’ll actually get done while Luna is playing with this.

At under $10, despite the cons, I think Luna will enjoy this.  The PetSafe© Busy Buddy Tug-A-Jug did a good job of tuckering her out.

tuckered out


Your turn

Do you have this?  Tell me what you think in the comments below.  Your comments could help others decide whether this is the right toy for their pooch.



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5 thoughts on “Product Review: PetSafe© Busy Buddy Tug-A-Jug

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