11/19/2009 at 06:47 PM EST
I consider the two dogs in my home to be pretty smart but, even they were fooled by the Potty Patch -- eventually.
The Potty Patch, disguised to look like a large patch of grass, is really a bathroom system that allows your dog to relieve him or her self without being taken out for a walk. The function is essentially the same as your everyday puppy pads, but the grass-like surface may look and feel more inviting to your dog. The Potty Patch is also a conversation starter and a lot better looking that drab puppy pads. The "grass" is actually an anti-microbial synthetic material atop two other tiers – a grate and a tray.
The grate helps keep the top "grass" layer dry and the tray can hold up to a gallon of liquid! However, when I used the Potty Patch, I placed an absorbent puppy pad between the grate and the tray. The pad did make the three layers a little harder to secure in place, but who wants to lift and carry a tray full of dog urine? The puppy pad is a cleaner option.
Putting the Potty Patch together is easy, except that the tiers don't easily secure in place on top of each other.
My Shih Tzu Gizzy was trained to go on the puppy pad and outdoors while Sasha, my sister's Chihuahua, was only trained to go outside. The first time I sat the dogs on the Potty Patch, they sniffed, nibbled, sat and spread out across it. They seemed genuinely intrigued but even after waiting past their normal walk time, neither dog had actually used it for its intended purpose.
After several more days of trying, I once again came home, lifted the "grass" and grate, and saw a completely unsoiled puppy pad in the tray. Finally, I decided to go to Petco and get their Potty Training Aid
attractant spray. The spray is used to help your dog designate where to go pee by smelling like, well, dog pee.
The following morning, I liberally sprayed the Potty Patch ($39.99
) with the attractant ($8.99) and within five minutes Sasha -- who has always been opposed to puppy pads – peed on the patch! Clean up was a breeze, I just lifted the grate and replaced the puppy pad with a fresh one. A soap and water wash is necessary after several uses.
Sadly, a week later Sasha broke her leg and the importance of products like the Potty Patch became even clearer. For dogs that cannot get out of the house, the Potty Patch (with attractant spray!) is the next best thing to a patch of grass.See more reviews on PEOPLEPets.com:REVIEW: Dog Brick Makes Fido Work for His GrubREVIEW: Book a First-Class Carrier for Your Pet!