|Article Author: Dog Product Review - A Merryvaluation by Angie McKaig|
When it comes to pets, the industry is finally catching up with all that cool-but-useful stuff for our furkids like car seats, bike carriers and strollers. But the one thing that's been consistently missing from the selection is a high chair for pets.
And why not? Merry loves to sit at the dining room table with the "grownups". But keeping a pug on your lap is guaranteed to cover you with a nice soft blanket of pug hair (and yes - sigh - even the princess, sweet as sugar and butter won't melt and all that, still sheds like a little fawn tumbleweed). Clearly, we've been in need of a better option.
It's long overdue, but it's finally here. The folks at Simply Devine Finds sent us a Pet Highchair to try out, and we're here to tell you that it's super.
The design is basically a modified version of one type of high chair for babies (so we're told). But unlike most toddler-type high chairs, it neither requires you give up a dining room seat for your dog nor makes you store a completely separate and additional chair for your pet. (Whew.) This model actually attaches to the table itself.
Let's get down to how it works: you open the folding chair (yes, it folds down for easy storage) and slide the two legs beneath the table. Each leg has a locking brace that you turn 90 degrees up against the bottom of the table; these have rubberized feet and are adjustable to meet up with the bottom of your table. Once the braces are adjusted flush against the bottom of the table, your high chair is secure; however, even if the braces broke accidentally, your pet would still be supported temporarily by the bottom legs, which curve up towards the bottom of the table. In other words - they'd be leaning a bit, but still safe, giving you time to remove them from the chair without worrying about a fall.
The upper arms are flat and completely rubberized to ensure that your tabletop isn't damaged. The entire frame is made from steel (rubber-covered where it meets up with the table).
Now for the basket: Made from polyester, it is padded and wraps around the steel frame, featuring a strong hard bottom to support your pet. It's got a zippered pocket in the front interior and an open pocket in the back of the basket; presumably this is to hold treats, bags, anything else you might have with you. The basket - most importantly - also features a similar type of internal "leash" to what you'd find in a carrier - a small nylon leash with metal clasp that you can attach to your pet's collar to ensure they don't climb all over your table.
One of our testers pointed out that this could be a choking hazard. That's a good point, but here's my take on that: first, I don't believe you should ever use a product like this and then leave your pet unattended. Someone should be at the table with them at all times, to ensure your pet is safe. Second, if your pet is really the type of dog who might be likely to try to kamikaze themselves from the highchair, I suggest either you don't connect their leash to the high chair, or you just give this high chair idea a pass altogether. ;) For our part, Merry's such a scaredydog on heights (and seems to instinctively understand the carrier idea) that she would never try to leap from the chair; hence, the internal leash serves its intended purpose, preventing her from climbing onto the table and snacking from everyone's plates! (Bad pug!)
In the end, I was thrilled with the fact the that the chair worked as advertised (okay, I was skeptical). Once I got the hang of it, it took mere minutes to set up and stored away flat in a closet or under a hutch. Merry was happy as a clam in the chair and really loved being at eye level - more or less - with everyone at the table. It seemed very secure and now that we've tried it for a while I am no longer concerned about it slipping, collapsing, or anything else.
My only real complaint was the color scheme. Don't get me wrong - the princess adores pink - but we were hoping for something either more stylishly pink (think maribou, hot pink velour and rhinestones) or something that would, you know, fit in with my elegantly neutral dining room decor. Realistically, the latter would be a great deal more practical - styles and colors that would be suited to home decor would be much more appropriate here. I realize you run into the same problems at times with childrens' products - but can't we do better than that? I'm hoping we can convince the powers that be to come up with some more neutral, decor-friendly colors.
Still, if you've got a wee furkid just chomping at the bone to "sit up with the grownups", I think the dog high chair is a great solution and one that's long overdue!
You can find out more about Simply Devine Finds from their web site at www.simplydevinefinds.com.