Friday, April 19, 2013

Product review: Hartz Zoo Balloons

Once Elka started to play with and love squeaky toys, I had to pretty quickly get on the bandwagon and find ones that could suffer through her tough love and last for more than one play session. The Kong Squeezz toys have done quite well for that, though they are a bit spendy. The Tuffie Squid was another, but one I had to watch her with pretty closely. So, you can imagine I'm pretty happy to find a "renewable resource" of squeaky toys right in my grocery store, the Hartz Zoo Balloons. I'm not sure why they're seven bucks on Amazon, as I typically pay four and change, but it is what it is.

The Zoo Balloons come in three different animals: an alligator, a lion, and a rhino. I don't name the animals individually when I'm talking about the toy to Elka. We've had far too fast a turnover in them for that, and there's no guarantee what will be in stock next. I just call it the squeaky toy.

They hold up fairly well to more than one session of chewing and stomping. Some of the time Elka could spend concentrating on damaging the toy is frequently spent on licking the squeak hole instead. I'm not really sure what's up with that, but I'll take it. They're made of a non-smelly rubber (or latex?) and then stuffed with some kind of semi solid white stuff not unlike memory foam, so it's got a fairly solid feel to it and bounces back well when released. Of course, once there are little holes in the latex, the white stuff starts coming out, and then it's garbage time for the squeaky toy.

Only once so far has she diverged from the regular course of squeaky toy destruction. She once lay there with the toy and chewed the rhino's leg off. She didn't consume the leg, just left it on the floor, but I noticed an inordinate amount of stuffing on the floor and came to take it away. I guess it's good she didn't chew the face off? I'm also very grateful that Elka never seems to consume any of the stuffing; she never has, whether it was her dog bed she was chewing apart, a stuffed toy, or these Hartz things.

So, I do continue to buy them, because as I said, they're fairly cheap (comparatively) and hold up well (enough) to Elka's maw. The squeak isn't even all that abrasive. Or, I've gotten accustomed to that kind of squeaking. Whichever.

(FTC disclosure: I was not compensated in any way for this product review.)


  1. Thanks for the review, I think it sounds good and I would buy such a thingy too. The toys here have also no name, they are not long enough alive for pondering about a name :o) Have a funny friday and a fabulous weekend. btw: the green guy looks great with your coat, Elka :o)

  2. Funny that Elka licks the squeaky toy's "belly button"!!

  3. Those are awfully cute. I have one of these:
    But I don't let my dogs have it. The back says Bite Me. Heh.

  4. Elka, we 'kill' the squeaky toys EXACTLY the same way! I also go for the squeaky button (the JW's are the easiest to get out). I'm gonna have Ma on the look out for these!
    Great Review

  5. We do love our squeaky toys! And we need ones that can stand up to Terrier Demolition! Thanks for the review!

    Wyatt and Stanzie

  6. Great review! I might give these a try with my crew.

  7. We love squeaky toys, but they don't last much around here!
    We have to try he Kong ones...
    Enjoy your weekend!

    Kaiser and Farrusquinho

  8. This is the ONLY toy that our peke loves over and over. He grabs hold of one of the legs with his mouth makes it fly through the air. He makes his own game of chase everyday when he gets bored. We had the lion first and just got the rhino and he loves that one as well.