The Great Pet Toy Swap

Wayne is always scolding me for spoiling our pets with new toys. It’s true. I do. Murphy, Kitty, and Tabby have so many toys they could play with a different one every day for at least two weeks. (If not maybe a whole month.)

But in my partial defense (I say partial because I fully admit sometimes I go overboard with the spending), every toy was bought with them in mind. This is not as obvious a statement as it might seem.

What I’m getting at is I know Kitty (and now Tabby) likes to hide in things. Hence the red hut and the yellow and blue tunnel. They also like to chase things, so I have plenty of balls on hand for them to swat and pursue after to their heart’s content. Stuffed mice, furry rather than felt covered, also deliver big amusement.

Murphy’s very simple. He likes stuffed toys. He’s not into the vinyl variety or balls. Just give him a good stuffed toy to shake, play tugga-tugga with, or pull the stuffing out of and he’s good to go. His Aunt Coco also makes something called a “shake toy” that he loves. (She knits an outer shell that encases an inner bag sewn out of scrap material. We send her our holey socks, which she uses to stuff the inner ball. Shake balls are like Tootsie Pops to Murph –how much chewing does it take to get to the center and the bag with the socks? Which is his favorite part.)

Murph also likes the cat toys. He especially likes to steal their little catnip filled ones. Until recently, however, the cats showed no interest in his toys. And they didn’t much care if he stole theirs.

A couple months back I bought Murph a “puzzle” toy from Doctors Foster and Smith. He loves chasing squirrels so the Hide N Seek Squirrel Toy was the natural choice. (It’s a little stuffed tree stump that comes with three small stuffed squirrels he can root out of the stump.)

The little squirrels were a big hit. They were bite-sized delights. But he wasn’t the only one who got a big kick out of them. Tabby thinks they’re pretty neat too.

I never know who’s going to catch one when I throw them. Tabby’s proving to be quite the athletic girl. She has no problem jumping in the air to catch and retrieve the toy, even sometimes snatching it out of Murph’s grasp. And then she’ll roll over and bite and kick it.

Murph isn’t quite sure what to make of this. And I’m not sure what’s funnier: his bafflement over her playing with his toys, or her playing with them. Even more amusing is how she’s now taken to the stump too and will pull out any squirrels squirreled away inside.

Thank heavens it came with three “puzzle pieces.” They’re all getting used. Just not by the pet I originally intended.

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