a Taj MuttHall Dog Diary: Toys With Names

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Toys With Names

SUMMARY: Around here, you're not just "toy". You are, perhaps, "Mr. Toy".

(Ported from my recent Facebook post.)

I name the toys that my dogs and I play with the most. I use the names constantly while playing. My hope is that, just from that, they'll be able to fetch various toys by name. Turns out that, except for the winners of the Miss Popularity contest, it takes more work than that. But, for fun, anyway, here is the current set of Toys With Names.

Clockwise from top left and spiraling inward: Flying Minkey, Flying Fox, The Incredible Hulk, CAP-tain America, Spidey, Puffin, Squeaky Snake, Rope, Ropebone, Monkeyface, Ballflower, Liddle Toy, Liddle Ball, Bear, Binkie, Bikini Chicken (aka Playchicken), Flatball, Lattice, Bee (sometimes Buzz... no wonder they're confused), Rabbit (sans ears so closely resembles Bear the last year or so), Ladybug.

"Monkeyface iz MY's!" -Chip ^^^

[Since I lined up the family for the photo, I noticed that SOMEhow Purple Hippo made an escape sometime between when i lined them all up for photos and when I actually took the photo. And Jolly[Ball] is out in the yard. Oh, drat, I didn't think about MilkerToy or Riot Tug! Or Frisbee! Or, jeez, Cthulhu-Face! Hmmm--and Mr. Duck is completely MIA. Wonder where he's gone to that he didn't show up in a sweep of the house?]

Human Mom Responds to Your Questions About Toys With Names

Q: Omg...so many toys so little time. If my dogs see this, I am in serious trouble.  -Lloyda
A:  This is not #allTheThings. Just the #thingsWithNames. -Human Mom
Q: Even more reason dogs are not allowed access to Facebook!  -Lloyda

Q:  Turbo approves of the collection.  -Diane B.
A:  Thank goodness! -Human Mom

Q:  We do that too. Katie only brings us the correct named toy if it's obviously available and alone. -Dawn K.
A: We have a lot of that going on, too. Zorro can always bring Flatball no matter how many distractions, and usually Squeakysnake if Flatball isn't around. -Human Mom

Q:  Gem dismembers most toys. Yours look great. - Kathy C.
A:  We have deep dark secrets--FlyingMinkey is missing a leg. CAP-tain America and Spidey and Monkeyface have holes in the back through which they are regularly restuffed. Puffin barely has any part of his head without a hole in it, and when there's no longer enough head to hold in the restuffing, he'll go, too. And I picked up and tossed 5 other toys whose time had come while evaluating who needed to be in this photo. -Human Mom
Q:  Gem's favorite toys are Turbo Blackman's ABC toys. She likes to steal the toys of others... -Kathy C.

Q: How do you remember the names? -Debbie
A:  Most of them are pretty obvious. Flatball. Flying Minkey. The Incredible Hulk. Puffin. Monkeyface. Like that. :-)  -Human Mom
A2: And I repeat the names over and over, intending for the dogs to learn them, but probably mostly me that learns them.  -Human Mom
A3: AND of course I didn't name them all at once; they acquired names when they first came into play. Plus, just, practice; I've been naming toys for many years, so it's habit.  -Human Mom
A4: If you have names for anything for your dog to get-- "Get your Leashie!" "Get your Dish!"--you've already started naming your toys. ;-)  -Human Mom
A5: P.S. "Dish" is "Dish" because, it turns out, "Bowl" sounds a lot like "Ball", so there was some confusion in the early days.  -Human Mom

Sidney T. Shares His Wisdom with Human Mom

Human Mom has very recently met Sidney T. on Facebook. Sidney has a charming and ever-expanding family of his own (including the assorted Mr Fox no.1; also 2, 3, 4, and so on to 9, who travel the world and send photos back). Sidney interprets for them all. Sidney's humans transcribe for Sidney. Human Mom had too much fun reading about said family and seeing their family portrait, which inspired this post. Sidney responded.

Sidney Thompson: Sidney says his photo also has absentees due to hangovers (Skype Bunny and Mr Hippomoomin if he recalls). It's so difficult to gather them all in the same place at one time. He says your eclectic collection is truly remarkable, and he likes the way that no matter how battered, they still stick around. He is fascinated by Mr Monkey Face, Bikini Chicken and Lattice. He has about thirty tennis balls, all of them called Mr Ball (no.1 to no.30), he says.

Human Mom: Thanks, Sidney. Human Mom attempts to winnow the truly battered ones, but some are crowd favorites and so stick around for a long time. Monkeyface has a hole in his head through which his brains are regularly removed, but it's easy enough to put them back so they can be removed again. Puffin, same thing. Bikini Chicken, however, went on to a better place after examination for this photo.
P.S. There are actually Flatball Thing 1, Flatball Thing 2, and Flatball Thing 3. Because Zorro loves them the best. And I dunno 4 or 5 Ladybugs. Sidney is a very lucky dog to have so many Mr Ball! Bet he has a good time with every one of them.

Sidney Thompson: Sidney says Bikini Chicken should be retrieved from her resting place if at all possible. The Mr Balls live at home or in various gardens of his customers. Sidney seems to find them easily when he visits every couple of weeks, he says.

Human Mom: Sadly, Bikini Chicken in all her rubberness was accidentally left in front of a sunny window for the better part of a year. Probably wasn't the dogs' doing. Human Mom is admitting nothing. So with every touch, bikini chicken was literally disintegrating. Barely could get her lined up for this photo. She crumbled away as I took her into The Other Room. :-( Like Mr. Alien, at one time her twins were readily available, but now it's just photos of them on the Interwebs.

Sidney Thompson: https://www.amazon.com/Charming-79888L.../dp/B000OWI254
Charming Large Henrietta Chicken
Henrietta Squawker is one of the colorful family members of the Charming Pet Toy Oinkers &…

Human Mom: She's not the version of Henrietta in the Playboy Chicken outfit, but she might want to come home with us anyway. Thanks, Sidney.

Sidney Thompson: Sidney says no it's not the same one but still a Bikini Chicken to keep the lineage going, he says.

Human Mom: Who am I to question Sidney's wisdom?

Sidney Thompson: Sidney says he is very fond of his Mr Foxes, which is why there are nine of them, although two have emigrated so it's time to spawn some replacements, he says.


  1. Katie has a ton of toys too. Each has a name...and we call them by the names when we ask for her to get something. Sometimes she gets the right thing and we think she knows....then again...it might just be luck. Except for Piggy. You can't play "Piggy in the tunnel" with cow or froggie. She won't play unless it's Piggy.

    1. Every kid has their favorite, right? "Piggy in the Tunnel" makes me laugh.

    2. I can't actually find Piggy at the moment. So she won't play the tunnel game. She's such a stubborn dog.

    3. Wow. That *is* a stubborn dog!