Over the past month, I’ve played with two tech-powered pet toys from Cheerble, and it’s been great fun. At least, for me anyway.
My dog, a nearly 12 year old Cavachon named Bonnie, is at this point where she is quite lazy. Much of the energy she once had is gone, so she doesn’t do as much as she used to. Because of this, Bonnie hasn’t been as receptive to these toys as I would have hoped, but that’s more down to her age and temperament than the fault of the Cheerble products themselves. (It even took a while for her to “pose” with one of the products in the photo above.)
Specifically, I used Cheerble Wicked Ball SE and Wickedbone. The former is a small, round toy for cats and dogs that can roll on its own, while the latter is a bone-shaped remote control dog toy that you can steer using a mobile app. Impressive, both perform different functions, but equally practical.
Granted, my dog wasn’t as keen on the Wicked Ball SE, as it requires a more actively engaged pet. Still, it’s easy to see what a great option this would be if you just want to leave your pet to their own devices. To help you, there are three interaction modes – Passive, Normal and Soft, to suit your dog’s particular personality. For example, you can roll the ball on its own and watch your pet quietly chase it, or it can vibrate with great intensity to excite your furry friend. It also features a soft rubber coating that’s perfect for your pet’s teeth and can be easily cleaned, to boot. Again, Bonnie, unfortunately, tended not to be interested in the Wicked Ball SE as a whole, but your mileage will certainly vary, especially with a younger, more energetic pet.
That said, Bonnie and I got a lot more out of the Wickedbone. Granted, it can be quite difficult to control at times, given that it’s an on-screen steering wheel, but otherwise I was very impressed. After charging it with a USB cable, you’ll connect the toy to your mobile device via Bluetooth through Cheerble’s Wickedbone app. With this app you have a wonderfully varied number of options. In addition to being able to steer the Wickedbone freely, there are nine “moves” you can command it to perform. These include a quick forward spin, a 180 degree spin, a full jerk, and a small forward or backward hop. There are also a number of customization options based on your dog’s “character” and size, as well as your play area and even how the Wickedbone behaves.
I’m not going to lie – I probably had more fun with it than Bonnie! Sliding the Wickedbone around the room while my dog confusedly barked then chased after it was a blast. She didn’t always care, but when she did, it was a real riot. If even my senior dog ends up taking an interest in the Wickedbone, it’s easy to see how even more enthusiastic younger and excitable pets will be about it.
All in all, my experience with both pet products from Cheerble was overall positive, although my dog may not have felt the same way. It’s one of those situations where she’s maybe a little too old to fully appreciate them like I did. Still, I can definitely say the products are well made, both after using them personally and after reading other anecdotes about their durability. Plus, they feel engaging to both owner and pet, especially the Wickedbone, so they’re easy to recommend.
The Wicked Ball SE costs CAD $44.99 and the Wickedbone is priced at $59.99. They are available on the Cheerble website, Amazon.ca and other retailers.
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