Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Product Review: Gooby Epiks

Gooby Epiks are high-tech dog boots with memory foam insoles and different shoes for front and rear feet. They appear to have been discontinued, but were made in blue, red, black, and pink. Epiks came in sizes to fit dogs with itty bitty through gigantic feet, and can still be found on eBay occasionally.
Photo by Erin Koski

I had high hopes for these shoes when I ordered them. Brisbane has extremely sensitive feet and is prone to a variety of injuries ranging from cuts to friction injuries to broken toenails. His Ruffwear Grip Trex work pretty well, but he is unhappy wearing them unless there is lure coursing to think about. I had hoped to find shoes that stayed on as well, but made him less emotional. Briz hates shoes in general, and the Epiks did nothing to change this opinion.
Photo by Erin Koski
These stylish sneakers are made out of something resembling suede, with contrasting-colored vents and snazzy little zippers up the front. I loved the idea of having different shoes for the front and back feet, since most dog shoes come as a set of four identical ones that are either too big for the back feet or too small for the front. Neo-Paws probably has the right idea, selling pairs so people can purchase separate sizes for the front and back.

My experience with dog shoes tells me that they won't stay on with just elastic. This is why none of the dog socks we have ever tried have been a success. The Epiks lack any kind of custom fit, they have elastic around the ankles, and a front zipper, and nothing to make the boots fit tighter on skinny legs and looser on big fat legs. This means they fly off as soon as Brisbane does anything more extreme than trot in a straight line.

Pros: Super cute! These are the prettiest dog shoes I have seen, the lack of a tightenable ankle strap leaves them looking very clean. Cushy inner soles and shoes marked specifically for the front and back feet really make these seem really well-designed.

Cons: The zippers were impossible to operate without lubricating them. Guess who got zipper lube all over the shoes? Even all greased up, they are very difficult to zip even when I'm not cramming a dog foot inside them. Also they don't stay on very well.

Bottom Line: I can expect to find them on Brisbane's feet at the end of a slow hike, but he is less than enthusiastic about wearing them for low-key adventures and they don't stay on well enough for anything worth doing.

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