The Best Toys for Your Dogs

According to the American Pet Products Manufacturers Association’s, more than half of dog owners purchase toys for their dogs.

Playing with toys is not the monopoly of little kids but also pets. Dogs have their own sets of toys to enjoy during their playing time. Dogs benefit from these toys, health and training wise. There are dog toys that can strengthen their teeth or build their intelligence. 

When buying toys for your dog, you may want to match them with your dog’s needs, demands and even personality. Is your dog the type that enjoys chasing and retrieving games, or chewing, sitting and sprawling? You may want to try experimenting first to find out which toys make your dogs the happiest.

Trixie liked to chew so I tried buying her soft chew toys as well as some harder ones.

CHEW TOYS

These are perfect for the dog that likes to chew a lot.  Instead of your dog chewing your furniture, why not find some good alternatives to destroy.  Trixie seemed to like chewing a lot regardless of what the object was.

Trixie chewing

You don’t even have to buy commercial products to chew on.  You’ll be surprised at what you’ll find around the house that can provide hours of chewing delight.  She spent hours destroying a tennis shoe sole. I wonder if it was my scent left in those old shoes that she felt comforting.  I don’t know but I’ve heard they also like old dirty socks.

Trixie with old tennis shoe

Trixie chewing stickSticks she found on the ground were also a favorite.

There are plenty of toys made of nylon or latex rubber that are perfect for that furry friend. The “Kong Toys” are among the popular brands of chew toys. All my dogs got hours of licking and chewing enjoyment when I stuffed these toys with peanut butter or cheese spread.

Some people say another good toy for your dog’s chewing pleasure is the rawhide. These are non- consumable, mummified skin-like toy that you have to throw away when they get soggy, and give your dog a new one. Some rawhides are basted with a variety of flavorings. Be sure to get the “USA rawhide” with a little flag sticker on the label because these do not contain preservative flavorings that are harmful for your dogs.

Despite my best training efforts, after giving Trixie a rawhide chew, she would get pretty aggressive toward me.  If I attempted to take it away from her, she would respond by snarling and acting very aggressive.  She never bit me but her aggression bothered me.  After I quit giving her rawhides, she was far less aggressive.  So, that was one item she quit getting.

Doggie “potato chips” is also a favorite. These “edible chips” can last to a minimum of an hour to a couple of days. They are available in different shapes like pig ears, snouts, cow knuckles, femurs, hooves and bully sticks. Others are bone-shaped made from a variety of vegetables such as carrots.

The Squirrel Dude is a tough, durable and fun toy; this hollow rubber chew toy takes on a new level in innovation; this helps to exercise your dog’s jaw a little more with the four little rubber prongs blocking the hole slightly that the dog has to work a little harder to get the goodies out.

SQUEAKY TOYS

For these squeaky toys, choose the rubber over the stuffed toys for durability and to avoid synthetic materials. These little noisemakers are good for training your dog’s hunting skills.

Trooper with frisbeeRETRIEVING TOYS

These are perfect for the chase-and-retrieve types of dogs. Dogs enjoy these toys because they get to play with you. Trooper loved chasing the Frisbee and I swear could jump 6 feet in the air to snatch it.

Trixie, on the other hand, couldn’t really get in to catching the Frisbee in the air.  She would wait until it hit ground, then retrieve it and return to me.

Trixie retreiving ballFrisbees and balls made specifically for this activity, are the best to be used. I found an old baseball that Trixie seemed to enjoy. Your dog will get a good workout and so is your arm.

Trixie seemed to lose her interest in toys as she grew older.  I would often try to get her to play, but she simply ignored me.

TUG TOYS

These toys are best for dogs that like to grab hold and never let go. Available in rope-like designs.  Trooper loved the tug toys and and we would play often.  Trixie had a sorta possessive aggression so I avoided pay with tug toys with her.

BRAIN TEASERS

Best for dogs that is left alone a lot. “Biscuit balls” and “food cubes” are great examples. These toys require the dog to solve types of puzzle in order to get a treat.

Egg Babies are a plush toy with three squeaker eggs inside; the stuffed plush texture of these squeakin’ plush eggs is easy on the teeth making it a great choice for both puppies and adult dogs alike. Great for games of fetch and catch or paired with a plush puzzle of your choice for an added challenge, such as the Hide A Squirrel or Hide A Hedgie.

Toys are a fun way to enjoy with your dog on a sunny day at the park or around the house. But be sure to apply proper safety measures especially when playing with balls, sticks and stones. You do not want to harm them in any way. Remember, this is a dog-eat-dog world! Even as harmless as playing can cause indestructible damage to your dog.