When I got my first dog, Betty, I worked in an office that allowed dogs. When I ended up changing jobs, it was really hard to leave Betty, along with my cat, Pookie, and, two years later, my other dog, Genie, home alone. I felt guilty about them sitting at home for long stretches of time without any stimulation.
When Cheerble Wicked Ball reached out to me to see if I would be interested in testing out their smart ball, I was really excited. Maybe my pets would finally have a fun toy to keep them occupied and mentally stimulated during the hours that they are home alone without people.
Was the Wicked Ball wicked fun for my pets? Here’s how it went.
The Pets Meet The Wicked Ball
As suggested, I first introduced the ball to my animals in off mode. All of my animals are rescues, and they can be a little apprehensive and skittish of new situations. When it was off, my animals each gave it some respective sniffs but did not seem too eager to play with it. Still, at least they weren’t perceiving it as a threat.
After letting them get used to it, I went ahead and turned the ball on. The ball is a little tricky to learn how to open and close at first. That said, once you get the hang of it, it’s fairly easy.
All you need to do is unscrew the ball and hold down the on/off button inside. Once on, you stick the motor back into the shell and twist it together. This is also how you charge the ball with a provided USB cable.
According to the product’s website, the ball has three speed/intensity settings: gentle (represented by a green light), regular (blue light), and active (purple light). Even at the lowest setting, the Cheerble Wicked Ball moved fairly quickly.
The ball also has a small snack hole where you can stuff little treats in the ball to encourage play.
The Wicked Ball Makes Its Moves
As the ball started to wiggle and move, all of my animals became alert. They would apprehensively sniff at it, and interact with it in a very cautious manner. Unfortunately, before any of my animals truly had a chance to warm up to it, the ball made its way under a couch and became stuck.
According to the product’s site, the Cheerble Wicked Ball is supposed to be able to navigate around tight spaces. Sometimes the ball was able to get out from underneath my couches (which are 4.5 inches from the floor; the Wicked Ball is 3 inches across), but other times it needed to be manually retrieved.
Even when I was able to block off the potential stuck areas, my animals did not seem too keen on interacting with the smart ball. My calico cat, Pookie, loved to watch it dart around from the safety of her cat tree. However, if it got too close, she was not interested.
The same went for both of my chihuahua mixes. My oldest, Genie (12 years old), seemed the most into it, but mostly she just enjoyed barking at it and running around it. While she was definitely entertained, I don’t imagine my neighbors being too fond of a toy that makes my dog bark incessantly.
For my pets, adding a little food incentive to the snack hole did not inspire much. They would all wait for the toy to be safely off before grabbing the treat.
Should You Get The Wicked Ball?
At $34, buying this toy isn’t a big gamble if you think your dog or cat would be interested. If the Cheerble Wicked Ball came with a slower setting–or maybe even a smaller size, given I have smaller animals–I would be interested to try it out again and see if my pets play with it.
Ultimately, I think this could be a good toy for a very active, larger dog. However, if your animals are skittish, it may take time before they come around to the toy, if at all.
Have your pets tried the Cheerble Wicked Ball? What did they think? Let us know in the comments below!