Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Riggins Tries Out Kurgo’s Outdoor Gear for Dogs

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Riggins and I are an active duo. Recently we spent the weekend with family on a camping trip. It was the perfect time to try out some Kurgo outdoor gear that the company had sent over.

During our time roughing it, Riggins had the opportunity to try out Kurgo’s Loft Dog Travel Bed, Reflect and Protect Active Dog Bandana, Collapse A Bowl, and the Step ‘N’ Strobe Dog Shoes. Here’s what we thought:

Loft Dog Travel Bed

By far, this was Riggins’ favorite item. When camping, I’ve always struggled to find a bed that will work well, protecting him from the ground, and that is sturdy enough and easy to shake off and move to different locations. The Loft Dog Travel Bed was great at all these things and more.

First of all, it is designed to roll up and be carried just like your sleeping bag. After unrolling it the first time and seeing how plush it was, I was pretty sure Riggins was going to be more comfortable than I was in our little three-man tent!

As soon as we got to our spot, I unrolled Riggins’ bed and plopped it on the ground in front of my parents’ motorhome. Riggins walked right over and curled up on top — he didn’t hesitate. The bed was moved a number of times during the day to keep Riggins comfortable in the shade, and each time it was easy to pick up, shake off, and plop back down again.

The large size — it comes in medium and large — was perfect. Big enough for Riggins to be comfortable but small enough to still be manageable and not take up the entire camp!

"If you need us Grandpa and I will be right here!"

“If you need us, Grandpa and I will be right here!” (Photo by Wendy Newell)

When it was time to go to bed, I simply moved it into the tent and next to my sleeping bag, and Riggins followed right behind. Now, to be honest, the first night he choose to move off his bed to sleep with his favorite human, my niece. The two of them curled up bum to bum and tried to squeeze me off the foam egg crate I had stolen from the motorhome earlier in the day. Abandoning his travel bed really was more about the need to be with his cousin vs. being uncomfortable where he was.

The next night, he tried the same thing with my nephew, but the 8-year-old boy wasn’t having it and moved to Riggins’ bed to play games on my iPhone in comfort. Turns out, the loft bed can be used for small boys as well as dogs!

I haven’t washed Riggins’ new camping bed yet, but the fact that it is machine washable is a huge plus.

Reflect and Protect Active Dog Bandana

This was MY favorite item we were reviewing. Riggins is almost all black, and I have invested in countless reflectors and lights for him. Normally while camping, I’ll secure a couple of lights to his harness. At night, you just see a random light floating around in the darkness. That’s Riggins!

Snazzy bandana!

Snazzy bandana! (Photo by Wendy Newell)

The two big problems with the lights I’ve been using are that they either break (Riggins can be tough on things), or they fall off never to be found again. The Reflect and Protect Active Dog Bandana solved both of these problems and overall was more effective than the lights I had used in the past.

The bandana is secured to your pup with an elastic collar, which I loved. It was easy to get on and off, and once on wasn’t going anywhere. The material itself is bright, but it also has reflective material around the edges and a light strip down the middle. With just a pinch of the edge of the light strip, you can turn the bandana on and off.

You can't miss Riggins!

You can’t miss Riggins! (Photo by Wendy Newell)

I was much more comfortable with Riggins in his new bandana than I’ve been on previous trips, as I knew he would be easy to spot.

Collapse A Bowl

I’ve had bad luck with collapsible bowls in the past. As a dog sitter, I go hiking with pups almost daily, and the collapsible bowls tend to break at the creased areas when used on a regular basis. I’ve stopped purchasing them, opting instead for the cloth travel bowls — Kurgo has an option like that as well.

Riggins favorite human gets his dinner ready for him.

Riggins’ favorite human gets his dinner ready for him. (Photo by Wendy Newell)

Kurgo’s collapsible bowl was easy to use, and Riggins was more than happy to eat out of it. Of course, he is so food motivated he would  eat out of anything. Seriously. Recently I’ve given up even putting his food in a bowl at home. Instead I just leave it in the scoop I use to get it out of the kibble bag!

Chow time!

Chow time! (Photo by Wendy Newell)

Kurgo’s bowl certainly lasted through the weekend camping trip and doesn’t seem to be having the problems I’ve had with similar products in the past. I’m hopeful it will last and become my new go-to travel bowl.

Step ‘N’ Strobe Dog Shoes

To be honest, I knew what was going to happen with these before I even opened the box, but for you guys, the readers, I had to do it!

Riggins likes his shoes better when he is laying down eating a pig ear.

Riggins likes his shoes better when he is lying down eating a pig ear. (Photo by Wendy Newell)

Riggins is not a shoe dog. He never has been. I’m sure if I put shoes on him more often, he would get use to them. I don’t do that, so instead of being okay with them, he wants them OFF HIS FEET AS SOON AS POSSIBLE.

Now that you know that, you can imagine how Riggins reacted to me strapping him into these doggie hiking shoes. Actually you don’t have to imagine. I shot a video for you:

Soooooooo … these don’t work for Riggins, BUT if your dog tolerates shoes, these are the best I’ve seen for hardcore hiking and walking.

The shoe has a sole that rivals my own hiking shoes. An elastic drawstring makes it easy to get the mouth of the shoe wide enough to get it on without too much struggle. The same elastic drawstring, along with a Velcro strap, keeps the shoe secure — when done correctly. Honestly, it is the only shoe I’ve put on Riggins that I thought might have a shot at staying on.

Finally, the shoe lights up when your dog steps. HOW BRILLIANT IS THAT? As I mentioned before, Riggins is almost all black, so anything that lights up makes me happy and keeps him safer while he is out and about. Not to mention that shoes that light up when you walk are just fun!

Scorecard

Quality: I’ve always found Kurgo’s products to be built really well. These four items seem to keep up the high quality I expect from the brand.
Style: The bright colors are great. Riggins appreciated all the attention he got while strutting around in the handsome gear.
Function: Perfection. Not only do the products do what the company says they will, they do it better than other options on the market.
Creativity: I was pretty impressed with the ability to roll up the dog bed and carry it off, as well as the bandana’s reflective feature.
Value: Loft Wonder Dog Bed — $65. Reflect and Protect Active Dog Bandana — $20. Collapse A Bowl — $10. Step ‘N’ Strobe Dog Shoes — $60. These prices are well worth it for the quality of the products.

Bottom line

All in all, I’ve always turned to Kurgo for outdoor gear because the company is good at it. Its camping items are no different.

Read more Dogster reviews: 

About the author: Wendy Newell is a former VP of Sales turned Grade A Dog Sitter. After years of stress, she decided to leave the world of “always be closing” to one of tail wags and licks. Wendy’s new career keeps her busy hiking, being a dog chauffeur, picking up poo, sacrificing her bed, and other fur-filled activities. Wendy and her dog, Riggins, take their always-changing pack of pups on adventures throughout the Los Angeles area, where they live together in a cozy, happy home. You can learn more about Wendy, Riggins, and their adventures on Facebook and Instagram.

The post Riggins Tries Out Kurgo’s Outdoor Gear for Dogs appeared first on Dogster.

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