When looking for a new dog toy, it’s important to understand your canine’s playstyle as well as factors such as the toy’s structure and designed use, and more.
Here are a few factors to consider before making a purchase:
There are a variety of toys out there for your pup, each with their own unique set of benefits. The most common types of dog toys include rope toys, balls, and plushies.
- Dog ropes: Dog ropes are great for the chewer in your life, as their thick material can keep your pup entertained for hours. However, these toys can be bulky and are typically preferred by larger breeds.
- Balls: Balls are ideal for an active pup who loves to retrieve. Many dog balls today are made with durable natural rubber or neoprene, which should last your fetch-loving dog a few months.
- Plushies: Plushies serve as excellent comfort toys for your pet, helping to reduce anxiety while staving off boredom. However, these toys are typically made with soft materials that are easily destroyed by heavy chewers, making them a better fit for snuggles than chewing.
Durability is another important factor when looking into dog toys, as you don’t want your investment to be chewed up after a few days. Toys made with rope and polyester typically don’t last as long as the non-toxic plastic seen in balls and other bones.
While most dog toys are safe, The Humane Society of the United States recommends dog-proofing any toys that have loose strings, eyes, and ribbons that can be easily ingested.
Most dog toys come in multiple sizes to suit your dog’s needs, and it’s important to select the right one to encourage proper playing.
For example, if you have an extra-small or small dog, you’ll want a smaller-sized rope or ball that isn’t too heavy and can fit in their mouth. Conversely, if you have a larger breed that’s tough on toys, you may want to consider up-sizing your pup’s balls, ropes, and other toys.
Ease of use
Not all toys have a straightforward purpose like a ball for fetch or a rope for tug-of-war. Some models, such as activity boards or dog puzzle games, keep your dog entertained and intellectually stimulated by making them work for some sort of reward. Not only do these types of toys keep your dog’s attention, they also encourage your canine’s problem-solving skills.