American Girl, keep giving us Dolls of Color for Girls of the Year.

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Pet Reviews: Fancy Pomeranian Pet House Set (2014)

Puppy power!
Okay, I said I was going to start BeForever reviews soon. BeForever is breathing huge life into the Historicals where it wasn't anywhere near true for a while and I'm still on an Addy high. But there's been an AG new product release and it's a) a leak of the likely new Fall Shit and b) likely a limited time offer, since the place I got it from has weird ass turnovers. And since I'm due to be busy as shit the next few weeks with the Cousins, I wanted to go ahead and get this one out. So pet reviews it is! I do stuff like that because I'm cool and hip.

American Girl, since being owned by Mattel, has hugely branched out to get their brand into the minds of their target audience beyond word of mouth and catalogs (which are nice but nothing on a website for information). They opened physical stores--probably the best damn idea they ever had-- launched the website, and they started the movies and poking markets that went untapped by Pleasant Company, like craft sets at Joann and Michaels stores. One way is by having bundles of items at big box stores like Costco and Sam's Club. They've been doing this for at least since I've dealt with Costco--that's where we buy ridiculous amounts of things in bulk. Seattle and the surroundings are not big on WalDeMart, the Store That Shall Not Be Shopped.

AG, natch, won't sell dolls or outfits through the Big Box Stores--that would be competing with their own stores, especially with a store here in traveling distance. But they have sold things like expanded craft and activity bundles (the fashion design sets, I have), books and book sets often with mini dolls,1 playsets, and pet bundles. It's where I got Honey and Chip from my last review, and I keep an eye out for some smaller or more interesting AG stuff there, especially during the Holiday Toy Stack-ups that run from Sept to Dec. So when it leaked recently that new pets were being found at Costco--ones that weren't even up by AG yet!--I asked the man to run me there and was delighted to find the new three pets there. I am pretty sure this is a early product leak, and not some sort of one off thing with Costco, especially with the official names on the packaging and labeling and all. With BeForever, there wasn't the typical AG Fall and Winter Holiday Release, and there's going to be by probably mid October.

New dogs!
The three new pets leaked are the Preppy Sheepdog, Funky Terrier, and Fancy Pomeranian. Since these are through Costco and Costco can have a turnover of a month, I jumped on this. I got one as a Giftmas gift for a buddy and one for me--both the Fancy Pomeranian, since that's the one she asked for and the one I liked best. AG confirmed officially on a Facebook reply that these are not available through the catalog or website, so if you want one bundled like this you're going to need to haul buns to Costco somehow. (Or know someone who's cool enough with you to go to Costco for you.) The set comes with the pet, a magnetic toy, two food dishes, a small book, stickers and decals, and a cardboard house. The retail price on the box listed by AG is $52 bucks, but the cost at Costco is $29.99. Considering that a naked pet with their toy costs $28 now, I basically paid an extra two bucks plus tax for the accessories.

 Before I go hard into my Fancy Pom set, have two close ups of the other two:

Funky Terrier.
The Funky Terrier looks like a Jack Russell terrier, and is brown and white, I skipped this because I don't really feel the short haired posing pets. The dishes are dark pink and I didn't get a good shot of the toy.

Preppy Sheepdog.
The Preppy Sheepdog comes with blue dishes and a butterfly toy. It's all right--even properly fluffy, but I went for the Pomeranian over the sheepdog because it's so much cuter. So the Pom gets the review, and you have to reply on other people for the other two pets.2

Mint in Box but not for long!
The Pomeranian is the most "girly" of the pets; everything in her box is pink and tiara sparkles and fluffypoof. Through the front of the box you can see almost everything included; the doghouse is in the back behind the display. We've got roses and pink stones everywhere.

So fancy.
"Fancy Pomeranian" will probably be the official name once the pet shows up through AG proper this fall.

Contents do not include dog food or leash. I can deal with it.
The front rehashes what the set comes with. It's called a "pet house craft" because it comes blank. Which means I can avoid girling it up too much, maybe. Also "treat bowls." likely to discourage putting water in them.

Ooo, fancy house craft. Note the box says Eight and up. Stop giving AG things to your three year old because they like it. [/hater]

The book is tooled for the pet included. This would be the only reason I'd get the others. I'm a sucker for wanting to know what's in a book. The border is covered in tiaras and pink. Our theme is shiny stuff.

Purse and food bowls.
The purse and food bowls come in a plastic holder. The mat shown is not the actual mat and is part of the box packaging.

Another list of the contents.
Another checklist of what you're getting in your set. Like the new pets, these are posable. AG, don't ever go back to pet lumps. It shows the house and mat uncolored.

The top tells us shit we already know.

Back of the box.
The back of the box lets us know the new Pomeranian is "aww-dorable." When one collects AG, one puts up with terrible puns. Look at her pose. Sit! Fetch! Torch! Wait, this isn't a Ninetales. The house on the back is fully colored, but I can guarantee you that when I finally color my house, it's going to be other colors than pink. It is also going to be sealed and done with the utmost of badass coloring because fuck y'all I'm an artist.

She's totally down with the dolls.
The other side says she's an AG doll's best friend. I'm going to have mine be a girl, but that's me. If you want yours to be a boy, do it. It's a new era and boys can carry pink purses all they damn well please.

And in case you got any bright ideas, the doll is not included. Go to AG's site or the store and pay
$1153 for your girl.

Deboxing #1.
Out of the box, but not off the display. Behind the box you can see the bag with the stickers and mat. The dog is mounted down with a paper twist tie and the book is held in with flaps. It all comes out easy enough, and can go in the recycling or trash.

Now, to the actual items.

Meet Pompom.
Fancy Pomeranian: The main part of this set is the dog herself. I have named her Pompom because I'm only as creative as the cold medicine lets me be. Also Pompom is a kickass name. So that is who she will be for the rest of her review.

Fuzzy facekins.
Pompom has black beady eyes, a black nose, pointy furry ears, and a two-colored muzzle--a slightly darker tan over the bridge and the lighter tan color around the rest of her face. The fur around her face, on her ears, and over muzzle are shorter than the rest of her fur. She has no mouth line, though there is a slight seam there.

Floof and poof.

The rest of her except her lower paws is covered in thick, long pile fur. This was after a quick grooming, so it's laying flatter than before. It fluffs up easy enough.

Tail. And my hand.
Her tail curls up over her back. The only way I could make it stand out was to tuck my fingers around the tail. The tail isn't designed to be straightened, so don't try.

The tags hang off the back leg. These got clipped pretty quickly. AG tags are ridiculong. 

Tags and foot ID.
And of course, she has the official AG Star on her back left foot. No knock offs here.

Draw me like one of your French Girls.
The tummy is fuzzy as the rest of her, and her paws are the same style of plastic leather that Rascal has.

Cats or dogs? ¿Porque no los dos?
Rascal and Pompom are about the same size overall. They have the same poseability in the legs and head, so I'm not going through the poses again with Pompom. The mechanical side of me wants to get a cheap pet and skin them to figure out the general body shape.

Now Kiss. Even if you can't.
Since they both have the ability to hold the same toys, they have the same poles of the magnets out and so trying to ram their faces together doesn't work. Unlike Clawdeen and Torelei, I can't get my AG cats and dogs to make out.4 So much for shenanigans.

A. Pompom is a cute little fluff nugget~

For all the dog shopping needs.
Purse: Instead of a tennis bone, Pompom comes with a pink purse for maximum feminine doggy. The pale pink purse is a rectangular clutch-style purse with diamond style dark pink decorative "stitching" design, a heart and paw "clasp", and a pink bow molded on the upper left. While there is a seam on the front like an opening, the purse doesn't actually open. Which makes sense, since it's a dog toy.

Purse back.
The back of the purse is solid and the diamond stitch print design goes all the way around.

Going to blow some bones.5
Pompom holds her purse easily and cleanly--she can hold it from the back or the front.

Purses for boy cats too!
And a shot to show that Rascal can hold the purse just as easily. Toys are universal among the new pets. The purse doesn't do much, but it gets a B.  It's well designed and I like that it works with any pet.

Dog fish.
Bonus: Pompom can hold the fish.

Doggy dish.
Food Dishes: The 1 1/2" diameter food dishes--or treat bowls, whatever--are pale pink with a  1/2" depth for one to put in doggy faux food. One could also put water in them, if you're not going to mess up your pet. Since I'm likely to use these for everyone, I'm probably going to spray paint them silver. I do shit like that. B-.  Nice little accessory that adds to pet realism. And means I don't have to buy pet bowls for my pets.

Books. Not just for packaging.
Book: With the set comes a booklet titled Friends Forever: Pamper your Playful Pomeranian. I am 100% sure this will not come with the pets should they get a widespread release, so yay unique books. The book is 48 pages, not including the back extras, and is listed as retailing for $8.99. Don't know that I'd retail it for that much but in a set it's worth the cost.

Taking care of Pompom.
The book contains quizzes and trivia about the actual breed (two Pomeranians survived the sinking of the Titanic) caring for your toy Pomeranian (guess what toy dog fur doesn't grow back), ideas for their personality, and crafts such as making collars, elegant treat bowls. There's also a section to fill out about the pet like a scrapbook. At the back are small posters, punch-out items, and a Pomeranian shaped stencil. 

Okay that's cute.
A+. I love the book as much as the pet. If I did get any other pets, it would be mostly for the book, not even gonna lie, cause I love little book bits.

House: Some Assembly Required.
House, Mat, Stickers, and Floor Mat: To add more play to the big box sets, they've added a stiff cardboard dog house with fence, a floor mat to go under the house (or in front of it or besides it or anything you like), a dish mat to color, and decorative stickers. Since this came bundled together in the back of the box, I'm treating it as one big item.They come plain and uncolored for free creativity. When I was a girl, my grandma got me a huge coloring dollhouse that was big enough for me to sit in and play in. I adore the idea of coloring doll houses or other coloring items, and now that I'm much older, I still love a good coloring book. Nothing like not having to do the line art to get the creativity out some days.

The rectangular mat--blank and ready for coloring--has a tiara  with heart and circle jewels and rows of jewels across the long sides.

Pink and mat like.
The floor mat is pink with tiara style designs arranged to look like diamonds. There's little pink pawprint and heart and silver swirl accents. It's max femme.

Stickers make me so nervous.
The stickers have two major groups: decorative, and letters. With decorative stickers there's four large round gems (dark and light pink), four heart shaped gems (pink and light pink), fourteen middle round stones (seven pale pink and seven dark pink), sixteen small round stones (seven pale pink and seven dark pink), and five roses (one large, one medium, and two small.) For the letters, there's sixty letter stickers from the various letters of the alphabet in uppercase swirly letters. Like a lot of letter stickers they give you more of one letter and less of the others: one X, four Es, one J, four S's. Letter distribution is so funky. They're intended to stick all over the house and mat. I'm one of those people that gets weird about putting down stickers, so these are likely to end up somewhere that's not the doghouse. Or scanned first.

Basic assembly.
 The house instructions come on the roof piece. To sum up:

1) Color the shit out of the house. 
2) Put the body of the house together by sticking the tab in one side and popping it into shape.
3) Stick the balcony/fence/border into the slots out front. Pop out the window shutters.
4) Fold the roof and set it on top.
5) Continue to customize by adding stickers, using the colored paper as a rug, or writing all over it. ART THE THING.

Hello, dog house. No cutting or anything! Since I plan to take my time to color the house, I just did a quick pop up. This is a fancy Pomeranian set, so the doorway is shaped like a heart. I'll live with it.

Decent enough.
It's a decent size, and covered in jewels. Which I plan to color in maybe a rainbow style. I didn't snap the back, but it has a rose trellis. Yep. I'm so going to queer up this dog house.

Windows out!
It even has a window out to the world.

Sized right.
And Pompom fits in the doghouse well. As well as her food dishes. Time to get some Sharpies and make this place shine later. Overall I give the paper parts a B-. Too many jewels and swirly shit for my personal tastes,  but then again the dog is fancy. I shall color it well.


Otters with two pets, neither of which is hers.7
This is overall a pretty awesome set, and I'm glad for one I didn't wait. If your Costco or big-box store has this, get it soon as possible if you like it. If not, the pets are likely to come out through AG later, but not with all the bits unless it shows up in a sale online such as for Cyber Monday/discount clearance--I saw some Costco sets on the site like that some time back. So weigh that.

Enjoy the few times I get reviews out on stuff that is still new on the docket. Now more squealing about cool things and secret society stuff.

Getting along like cats and dogs.


1 This is how I got my mini Caroline. And I'm banking on this being a thing in my Costco by the Holidays to get some BeForever bundles. 
2 My man loves me, but asking for $90 worth of AG stuff for reviews is asking way too much of him.
3 Prices went up with BeForever. Such is the way of life.
4 I ship what I ship. Including Abbey/Ghoulia and Robecca/Clawd.
5 Getcha mind outta the gutter. 
6 You can direct all complaints to my butt.
7 Otters has a pet rabbit named Ostara. She's also chilling in Julie's summer set, first half. 


  1. "Stop giving AG stuff to your three year old." Perhaps the best quote of this article. I hate it so fucking much when I see toddlers and preschoolers walking around with 18 inch AG dolls. THEY ARE TOO YOUNG.

  2. Might have to borrow the father-in-laws Costco card and go get one of these! I'm glad to see you aren't afraid to rip in to the box and color/paint things. So many adult collectors don't "play" with their stuff--not this girl! I recently got Marie-Grace and couldn't get her out of her meet outfit fast enough.

    I agree with the "stop giving AG stuff to your three year old" too. There is a review on the AG site right now for one of the doll beds that says how sturdy it is because "her two year old has sits on it while she plays with her doll." WTF?!?! Who buys a kid that young a toy this expensive?? I can just picture how the hair will look a year from now...

  3. I haven't heard anything about Sam's Club having these, but I am so hoping to see these sets there--my town doesn't have a Costco. I am honestly not too keen on the "fancy" accessories, but I love the Pomeranian--my grandmother has a pom and this dog just reminds me of him.

    For the record, Neth, thank you so much for offering "Name/URL" as a commenting option on your blog--I really appreciate not having to make an account to leave a comment here.

  4. I am so looking forward to seeing the new pets in person, and excited to see these surprise releases. Really want to see how poseable they are for myself.
    I will complain about there being only one cat and 6(?) new dogs. Wish part of this Costco release had had at least one more cat, as did my daughter. We're cat people though.

    Great review again Neth!

  5. Once you're finished coloring the dog house, please post photos! (I love your creativity)


  6. Super adorable and I love your Otters (and her rabbit's name)!

    Looking forward to your BF reviews because oh my god, the amount of red hot stupid running around is making me want to claw out my eyes!

  7. please groom kittykins' wittle face. poor lil' bugger can't see properly.

  8. GREAT FIND! I think I really do have too many pets already but so glad to see these exist! Not sure how I feel about the pet redesigns yet.


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