Being an experienced electronic engineer and dog expert, I am truly amazed by the new type of innovative interactive toys for dogs named smart bones.
By nature, dogs are frolicsome creatures who seemingly have endless energy to go for a run or be showered with attention by their fur parents by merely throwing a ball to fetch or have a ‘chasing game’ all across the backyard. Like humans, dogs likewise need to exercise, be kept company, and keep their blood pumping for more fun and excitement. However, there are some constraints to a daily scheduled playtime with your dogs such as work demands, family engagements, or household chores. This will leave them unhappy, anxious, or bored, and will not keep your pooch emotionally healthy. The good news is, modern technology has presented us with another amazing invention which may be referred to as “smart bones”.
A smart bone enables you to keep your dog active with just a few taps on your smartphone. It is a bone-shaped interactive gaming device that can be controlled with a virtual joystick. You must simply connect your phone with it via Bluetooth and download an app. A smart bone acts responsively to distinct types of touch-based on its so-called ‘emotionally-driven system’ and playfully functions depending on your dog’s moods and reactions. If your interest is piqued with this incredible gadget, we reviewed and tested this type of toy and provide our expert opinion. Read on as we give you top-recommended smart bones for your beloved dogs.
- Built-in 12 types of emotional systems
- Automatic Play Modes
- Charging only for 1 hour
- Safe, FDA-food grade polycarbonate
- Some users say that it can last for only about 1 hour in interactive mode
Often hailed as the “One of the best interactive dog toys”, Wickedbone is a Bluetooth-enabled, aesthetic smart bone that features 12 programmed motions to greatly engage your dog by utilizing your iOS or Android phone. The range of connection is up to 30 feet. It can be likened to a remote-controlled toy car where your phone is the main weapon of choice.
An example of a mode is ‘Autoplay’ wherein the smart bone spins, moves by its own, and produce some noises to entirely attract your dog’s attention. Then there is the ‘Drive Mode’ where the virtual joystick comes in handy and lets you play directly with your pet. A ‘Sleep Mode’ is also available which basically puts the gadget into ‘standby’ and enables you to power down the smart bone for up to 3 months. What additionally makes this product stand out is its durability for active dog chewers and its assured safety for your dog’s teeth and claws as it is manufactured from food-grade polycarbonate. As for cleaning it, all you have to do is detach its protective cover and tires. A bit of a downside might be seen by some users as the battery seems to last for only a maximum of 1 hour. But looking at the brighter side, it will give time for your dog to rest and catch its breath!
Petgeek Interactive Dog Bone
- Award-winning brand
- No need for Bluetooth of Wi-Fi
- Safe, made of thermoplastic rubber
- Charging only for 1 hour
- Detachable parts; thus, convenient to clean
- Some users highlighted that it must be tapped frequently for it to move continuously (no virtual joystick)
If you want an award-winning smart bone for your pooch, then Petgeek is a perfect choice. It is because, in 2019, it bagged the prize of Fear Free Awards at the Global Pet Expo. Not only is it recognized for its brand, but Petgeek is seen as a huge help for your dog if you are aiming for it to lose weight or just develop its agility. Aesthetically, it has a flapping “tail” and turning wheels that can keep your dogs run excitedly. This smart bone does not mandate a Bluetooth or WiFi connection. What you are solely required to do is press the power button, give it a gentle tap, and let the fun begin. Considered as non-toxic, Petgeek smart bone has thermoplastic rubber that is harmless for your dog and even can provide a ‘gum massage’. It will not scratch your flooring too. All its parts are detachable which makes it convenient to clean from all the dog slobber and is dishwasher safe. Let us not forget its multiple textured shell design that lessens the build-up of plaque and tartar. A small problem is that unlike Wickedbone which is automatically controlled, this interactive toy needs to be touched frequently for it to move in a continuous manner. Sometimes, users say it leads to a dog’s loss of interest. Still, it is overall a good purchase!
GoBone Interactive Smart Bone
- Personalized experience depending on dog’s weight, breed, etc.
- Can be controlled either manually or automatically
- Easily replaceable parts
- Safe, FDA-grade materials
- Has video capturing function
- Some may view this as more costly than other brands
If you want a more personalized playtime moment for your dog, GoBone customizes its experience based on weight, age, breed, and play style. By first putting treats inside, patting it and then controlling it via the corresponding mobile app, you can access entertaining games such as GoBone Fetch and GoBone Hide-and-seek.
This product has been designed by people who are accustomed to create rugged products in the military. Hence, it is safely enclosed and has undergone over a thousand hours of testing primarily on shelter dogs. What’s more, it captures a shareable video recording your precious times with your pooch. When it wears out, this amazing smart bone can be changed easily and can be immediately given with a ‘fresh look’ on a different color without having to buy a new one. One reward of buying this product is you get to purchase one for yourself and donate one to a dog shelter of your choice. Some may perceive this toy as more expensive compared to other brands. It is pivotal to highlight that it has more offered features and can play with your dog for up to 8 hours.
Skymee Fury Bone
- Built-in 3 emotional condition options and 9 movement types
- Can be controlled either manually or automatically
- It is highly responsive to dog’s actions like chasing
- Safe material: ABS
- Easy to clean detachable tires
- Skymee does not offer replacement services if dog immediately damages the product
As playfulness is the real deal among most dogs, Skymee Fury Bone is top-notch in keeping your pet entertained. With actions like flipping, turning, and a bunch of other tricks namely rolling, nodding and swinging, this smart bone can be either automatically set up for as long as 60 minutes or manually manipulated by a virtual joystick on your phone. This is on a Bluetooth connection only. On such manual play setting, there are 3 available emotional condition options and 9 types of movements to surely provide a unique stimulating experience for your fur baby.
It reacts responsively to distinct types of dog actions such as teasing, avoiding, and chasing. Furthermore, there are various speeds by which you can make the toy move. As it is likewise instinctive for pooches to gnaw at objects, there is nothing to worry about with Skymee smart bone as it is manufactured with a safe material called ‘ABS’. For cleaning, what one must do is remove the easily-detachable tires and rinse. Meanwhile, a small disadvantage of this product is that, if damaged, Skymee does not offer replacement services. Yet, aside from that, this is definitely a great buy!
Milk-Bone Active Dog Toy
- 2-in-1: Acts as a treat-dispenser and a toy at the same time
- Milk-Bone biscuits are available to go with it in various shapes and flavors
- It comes in 2 sizes for both small and big dogs
- Safe material
- Some people say that it might be a bit less durable as compared to other brands
If you are a person who adheres to the mantra of ‘hitting 2 birds with 1 stone’, the Milk-bone has something to offer to you. Aside from playing with your dog, this smart bone also initiates positive reinforcement training by challenging your pooch to bounce and tumble it continuously to be rewarded with a tasty treat. Milk-bone concurrently offers Mini Biscuits to choose from with various flavours, sizes and shapes and may be in the form of tender chews or the classic crunchy bites. Crafted by dog experts located in New York, this treat dispenser is made of harmless and quality material. It comes in 2 sizes: 2.5 inches tall for dogs weighing up to 24 pounds and medium-sized in 2.9 inches for up to a 49-pound weight. A pitfall of using this toy is that it is less durable as compared to other interactive gadgets. So if your dog is a constant chewer, you might need to be more proactive on supervision. Nevertheless, it induces a wonderful kind of adventure for your pooch!
As M.K Clinton once remarked, “The world would be a nicer place if everyone had the ability to love as unconditionally as a dog”. That being said, as humans, it is just natural to reciprocate such absolute love by giving dogs a warm home, nutritious food, and of course, awesome entertainment to keep them physically, emotionally, socially and mentally healthy. There is no second-guessing that smart bones can play a big role in your dog’s journey and enjoyment. Thanks to the furtherance of dog high technology, our dog’s ultimate happiness are within our reach!
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