Next week, our partners at the Conservation Canines will comb through all of the entries of our Toy Destroyer Challenge and hand select the top five Toy Destroyers. Why would we ask them to take on this task? For us, the answer is simple – this group knows a thing or two about toy destroyers and the importance of an extremely durable dog toy.
To understand why a durable toy is so important to them, it helps to first understand the work that their canines do. The Conservation Canines support wildlife conservation and research projects by utilizing scat detection dogs. Their dogs are first rescued from a shelter – they pick the shelter dogs that show signs of having very high toy drive. These rescue dogs are then trained to detect species-specific scat, knowing their reward will be a well-deserved session of play with their Ruffwear Turnup™ toy. Scat detection dogs are able to locate samples from multiple species simultaneously across large, remote areas repeatedly over time. This method is highly non-invasive – as they do not have to get close to an actual animal to do their testing. Sampling with detection dogs also tends to be far less biased compared to traditional wildlife detection methods (remote cameras, radio-collaring, hair snags, and trapping). No other method can acquire such a vast amount of reliable information in so short a time, making this approach incredibly valuable for conservation planners and land managers.
While searching and doing field work, the Turnup is their reward of choice. The Huckama™ is the toy that they trust to leave with their dogs when not in the field. Here is a note from Conservation Canine handler Suzie Marlow:
“Conservation Canines works hard to play hard every day. Whether surveying along the snow-capped peaks in the Sierras or trudging through the snowy tundra and remote boreal forests of Alberta – we rely on one piece of gear to guarantee important data collection and a whole lot of fun. The Turnup has proven itself time and time again. This is no ordinary ball. Our dogs go absolutely mental to play ball, especially with the Turnup. Watching our CK9s chase this erratic bouncing ball of rubber is a joy in the field. It whistles as it whips through the mountain air, it gets annihilated in the mud, bobs down babbling brooks, deceivingly disappears in fresh powder and no matter what, it will always have a CK9 chasing close behind. Our dogs, no matter what size, can tear through most balls in a matter of minutes. This ball has stood the test of time. Our dogs obsessively chew, chew, chew. And when we aren’t in the field, we rely on the Huckama to take the obscene beating these dogs offer day in and day out.”
There are only a few days left to enter our Toy Destroyer challenge. Be sure to get your entries in by midnight, Sunday September 21st. Once all of our applications are received, the Conservation Canines will pick the top five challengers, who will then each be sent a Huckama or Turnup and a $75 gift card for Ruffwear gear.
We’d like to extend a sincere thank you to the Conservation Canines for the valuable conservation work that they do, and for the invaluable product feedback over the years, as well as for helping us with this challenge.