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on July 6, 2007
This toy takes more effort to get food out than the Buster Cube, which I like because it occupies the dog longer. I find that the cube, even on its "hardest" setting only takes a few minutes to get out most of the food, and then the rest doesn't come out no matter how long the dogs work it. With the bottle the dogs can get nearly all the food out if they keep at it.

At first you should fill the bottle so that it is over half full. This way food can come out more easily when it is on its side. This will encourage the dog to play with it. Once the food level goes down food will only come out as they toss and pull the bottle. It took my dog a few days to get to this, but now she seems to have mastered it. She stands the bottle up and knocks it over, putting food into the neck, then she works the rope a bit and manages to get a piece of kibble out. When I first got the toy I thought she would never be able to figure it out, but she has. Even so, it takes a fair amount of work to get out just a few pieces of food, so it can keep them occupied all day.
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on May 19, 2007
Our 16 month old yellow lab loves to play with empty 2 liter pop bottles. I bought him this toy because I worried he would cut his mouth and gums on the sharp plastic shards of those flimsy bottles. No worry about that with the Tug-a-Jug...this toy will most likely survive through the next millennium!

To fill with treats, just twist off the bottom; couldn't be easier. It's a lot of fun watching our dog figure out how to get at the goodies inside.

I honestly don't think the rope pull is going to last very long; especially if you are buying this for an aggressive chewer. However, don't let that stop you from buying the tug-a-jug. Even without the rope, it's still a great and challenging toy.
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on December 26, 2012
I have searched high and low for a toy that is actually challenging for my two very clever Border Collies. When I found the small size at TJMaxx, picked it up--it's actually bigger than I thought it would be (see picture I posted). For reference, both our dogs are about 35lbs. Most of the time we give them "brain" toys and they figure them out in 3 minutes and then that's it for that toy. I really do love Kongs for our dogs...they just take planning (i.e. you have to fill them and let them freeze) for them to take any time and even then they're usually empty in about 15 minutes. We also have "treat balls" which are great, but again are empty in about 15 minutes, not to mention the noise. When those things roll around on the hard wood floors it's like a train coming through the living room. This toy, however, is fun for the dogs, isn't noisy and doesn't really take any planning on my part at all. I just used it for the second time to feed one of our dogs dinner. It took her about 30 minutes to empty a cup of food. 30 minutes! That's unheard of!!!! I just ordered two more (one for our other BC and another for my parents' BC) and I can't wait for them to arrive!

***UPDATE 5/21/2013***
The threading on one of ours broke after about a month due to my dog's persistent, not to mention a rough, methods. We have since purchased a new one and have been using it nightly. We've tried crumpled paper and putting a tennis ball in each jug to slow our dogs down, but they both appear to have it down. It takes them about 15 minutes to finish them now. I miss the week where it took them 30 minutes, but oh well. It turns a 15-second meal into a 15-minute meal. That's something, right?
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on July 30, 2008
Try putting a tennis ball inside the bottle. My Border collie chewed the rope out too- to make it more challenging then just knocking it over and treats spilling out really easy, I put a smaller sized tennis ball inside so she still has to work the bottle back and forth in order to get the treats to go from the back of the bottle to the neck. Hope this helps! -Ali & *Kylie *the border collie/flat coat retriever mix
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on May 28, 2008
Tucker was nervous about this toy at first (as you'll see in the video) but really warmed up to it quickly and has enjoyed gnawing on it. However, this has not worked very well for us as a treat dispenser. I consider Tucker to be quite a clever puppy, but after fiddling with the tug-a-jug for a couple days, he just began bringing the thing to me and dropping it at my feet for me to dispense the treats for him. (I suppose that may be evidence of just how clever he is!)
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on December 18, 2012
Tug-a-jugs are by far the best money we've ever spent on dog toys. I buy them in Large for my Bernese Mountain Dog, and in Small for our Spaniel. The Berner has a wonderful system of holding the jar with one paw and using her teeth to pull and push the rope in and out to dispense the treats. Even with this very efficient system, the Jar is good for over an hour of challenging entertainment with only 1 cup of kibble. Now I will tell you that our Spaniel is not the brightest bulb in the box, and he will sit and study the Berner for quite a while, and STILL not 'get it'. He did however come up with his own brute force method of picking the jar up by the rope and dropping it on the ground in the blind hope that a piece of kibble might somehow magically appear. To his great relief, IT WORKS! So, smart or not so smart, this is money well spent. The only reason I give it 4 stars is that I have had to replace these 3 times. The first one lasted forever (Berners) the Second and third round lasted less than a month because they had the rubber type rope in them and both dogs accidentally chewed through them. The last replacement round was because of mold, and that deeply disturbed me. We put dry kibble in the jars, but the dogs soak the rope with saliva while they are working them. If left closed after they've finished (occasionally their jars end up in some doggy hidey place) the jars and the rope are completely filled with furry mold. I tried running them through the dishwasher and then putting them into the dryer, but you just can't get the darn things dry and I'm simply not confident that the mold was killed, so I end up throwing away a perfectly functional toy and buying another. If I could figure out a solution to this, I'd never buy another dog toy again - that is seriously how much my dogs love these.
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on September 28, 2008
I have a medium size dog - 38 pounds. He enjoys to chew on things but I have never thought of him as a heavy chewer. The night I received this he was so excited about it. It was so tempting to see, hear and smell the treats. Well, within 20 minutes the toy was in the garbage. He chewed off the rubber toy that blocks the treats from coming out. He then started to chew where the smell of the treats is able to escape. The plastic fell apart so easily! He then started to break off little pieces. I woudl not recommend this for a medium or large sized dog!
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on March 2, 2015
This toy is very well constructed and the concept is awesome. However, my 8 month old puppy cannot figure out that the rope dispenses the treats. The rope must move in a precise way for the treats to come out and he gets frustrated. He spends 99% of the time chewing on the bottom of the plastic bottle where the scent holes are, using the rope to whip the bottle around, and picking the toy up by the rubber thing and throwing it down. He doesn't seem to understand that the name of the toy is Tug-a-Jug. Haha. He does everything but tug it. He gets that he has to move the toy to get the food. The problem is that what he does makes the toy dispense one or two pieces of kibble which encourages him, but if he tugged on the toy, it would dispense a ton of kibble. He just doesn't try to bite the end of the rope and tug on it. He gets that the food comes out near the rubber thing but doesn't think it has to do with the rope....So, if you have an adult dog who does well with a real challenge, this toy might be great for you. But, I would not recommend this toy for a puppy or a dog that frustrates easily.

Update: The information with the toy said that people put balls inside the jug when the rope wears out. So, I decided to try it and see if my puppy would do better with that. I took the rope out (he gets it as a separate toy now) and put 4 golf ball size plastic balls inside. He is great at it!!
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on August 16, 2007
Our dog loves her Bad CUZ, but this toy she loves more than any other. She's a VERY tough chewer, and it's survived for quite some time with no damage. One thing - protect your toes with this toy - it's pretty heavy and does get swung around a bit. I wouldn't recommend this toy if you have low tables with knick-knacks, sensitive shins or teeny kids that may get bonked with it. Ours has gotten thrown (by the dog) repeatedly down the stairs onto a hard floor and hasn't broken yet.
As far as treats to go into it - remember that the rope is knotted inside the jug, so don't put anything into the jug that's soft or the rope will end up smelling REALLY nasty...
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on May 18, 2010
I was skeptical when I bought this toy because of all the reviews I read of people reporting that their dogs couldn't figure out how to use it. My pup figured out a strategy within about 5 minutes. It continues to be a useful toy for times when I want to keep her busy, and also for everyday feeding. If you've got a dog who likes puzzles, this is a great toy. This video shows two very different ways of approaching the tug-a-jug puzzle.
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