Ruffwear Bivy Pet Bowl
A Review by Backcountry k9 Brand Ambassador Sheila Goss and Gryphon
Okay, so in my role as a Brand Ambassador for http://backcountryk9.com/ I am reviewing a dog bowl. Not just any bowl, but the Ruffwear Bivy Pet Bowl (medium). Why look closely at the performance of a bowl?…bowl noun \ˈbōl\1: a concave usually nearly hemispherical vessel; specifically : a rather deep, round dish or basin, used chiefly for holding liquids, food, etc.
Sounds pretty simple, right? Well, when our dogs accompany us on outdoor adventures or travels, we attempt to keep their food and eating routine consistent. Nothing can ruin an outing more than a dog with an upset stomach. The dogs have to be willing and able to maintain fluid and food intake, in whatever outdoor environments we may be exploring. I use the same food and quantities for our dogs, when we are on our hiking and canoeing trips, as we do at home (with some supplemental treats, depending on activity level). We also have considerations of how much gear we carry, how much it weighs, and how much space it takes up….all factors which make a dedicated outdoor travel bowl a necessity for us.
The Ruffwear Bivy Bowl is a collapsible bowl, designed for use with food and/or water. We found it handy to carry in the car, and the loop on the base allows us to clip it to the outside of our gear (nice when the bowl is wet). It will be a useful, well made, lightweight addition to our canoe camping gear.
One of the features of this bowl which we liked most is the collapsibility factor; it is made of welded nylon fabric; the support rings allow you to collapse it flat, or partially, to make a bowl of a lower height. It is wider at the base (7.5 in) than the top width ( 6 in) for stability, and has a rubber base. It weights only 3.3 oz. empty (weighed), and has a measured capacity of 60 oz. liquid ( for medium size). The large capacity is nice to have when two dogs are sharing the water.
The bright orange nylon fabric seems durable, and its shape when opened is more conducive to easy use by dog than some of the softer sided fabric bowls.We tested the bowl with water, and with meals for Gryphon; the bowl’s top diameter is quite a bit smaller than his normal bowl, but that didn’t slow him up! He had no problem eating his kibble/water mixture, and he was able to get into the edges of the base to clean up any remnants of edibles.
Ruffwear suggests you hand wash the bowl; we found it fairly easy to rinse out the bowl, and hang it to dry ( from the hanging loop). Some other outdoor dog bowls are dishwasher safe; it would nice to occasionally be able to send the bowl through the dishwasher, for a sanitizing wash.
We also found that the rubber base, described as “no-slip” actually is quite smooth, and when eating food (not while drinking water), Gryphon actually had the bowl sliding all across a wood floor. We noted that on a snowy surface the bowl also tended to slide around.
The suggested price for this bowl is 24.95, more than twice the price for our other outdoor dog bowl. However, the additional capacity, and wider base, for stability on all but slippery surfaces, make that an investment we would consider. It would be a good item to keep in the car, for water breaks, and also to take hiking, backpacking, or canoe camping. Hey, and for those of us who like a little ambient light when camping, it makes for a pretty nice “glow-light” in the tent, when placed over a headlamp…..
Disclosure: This item was provided to me by Backcountry K-9 http://backcountryk9.com/ , for purposes of reviewing it.