Many dog owners want to give their beloved furry companions treats that are both delicious and will keep them occupied. For this reason, bully sticks are a popular all-natural treat suitable for a wide range of dogs on a variety of diets. However, Bart Lee and Claire Riley know all too well that these beef muscle goodies do have their cons…
After a stressful incident during which inventor Claire’s Frenchie, Peanut, choked on a bully stick, the sibling duo began researching ways to ensure no other dogs would have traumatic choking events while enjoying these long-lasting chews.
The solution they came to was the Monchball: a 3D printed, light weight, bite proof bully stick holder.
Printed locally in Brisbane, these unique devices are comprised of two halves of a hollow sphere. The halves click shut with a quick release buckle to surround and protect one end of a bully stick and prevent a greedy dog or puppy from ingesting the entire treat and being stricken with a painful – and sometimes life threatening – intestinal blockage. The trick is in the size and shape: a toy too big for a dog’s mouth and with no edges to get a hold on with its teeth is very bite resistant. This ensures the dog cannot get the entire toy in its mouth, and also prevents it from chewing and destroying the Monchball, meaning it will last for many treats.
The Monchball’s separable configuration is incredibly easy for a human to operate and place the treat in the Monchball for their furry friend, but is much too complicated for a dog to open (at least until they grow opposable thumbs).
Using a food safe, 1.75mm PETG filament (the same grade of plastic that bottled water comes in!), a new Monchball can be printed within 12 hours, and Monchball supplies replacement components so you can repair a worn-down part without needing to replace the entire ball.
The Monchball comes in multiple sizes to suit different sized dogs and is now being sold across the world, shipping to Australia, USA, and Canada. This has meant that patent protection had to be sought for multiple jurisdictions. Patent Attorney Jeremy Moller has been assisting in the patent prosecution for the unique functionality of the lifesaving device since 2020, in multiple jurisdictions. Design registration has also been sought to cover the unique appearance of these pet friendly products.
If you are looking to protect the design or functionality of your new product or invention, contact Michael Buck IP for a free consultation and discussion of your options.