Chewing and playing are natural canine behaviors and though some dogs will play or chew more than others, dog toys are essential items for all dogs. Behavior problems can develop when dogs don’t have the proper outlets to follow their instincts.
A dog’s toy preference depends on your dog’s personal style of playing and chewing. You can use the list below as a guide to choosing the right dog toy for your dog.
Dog Toy Choices
Be smart with your choices, the most dangerous are usually the most attractive to dogs. Avoid the type of toys that are sharp or have pointy objects.
Choose the right dog toy size
Choosing the right dog toy should be appropriate for your dog’s current size. If you’re buying a ball, make sure it’s large enough to carry, but not to small. Balls and other dog toys that are too small can easily be swallowed or become lodged in your dog’s mouth or throat. You can also alter any dog toys that aren’t “dog-proof” by removing the ribbons, strings or other parts that could be chewed or ingested.
Soft and Squeaky dog toys
Many dogs like to play rough with their plush toys. Take note of any dog toy that contains a “squeaker” buried in its center if your dog likes to “rip apart” his toys. These toys provide hours of entertainment for your dogs but should be used under “supervision only” as your dog may feel that he must find and destroy the squeak-source and accidentally ingest it. Soft stuffed toys are good for several purposes but they are not appropriate for all dogs, they are not indestructible but there are some that are sturdier than others.
Rubber dog toys
For high energy pets, a very hard rubber dog toys are great. Available in a variety of shapes and sizes, these types of dog toys are fund for chewing and for carrying around. For dogs who likes to play fetch, rope toys are always a big hit. Tennis balls also make a great dog toys, but keep an eye out for any that could be chewed though, and make sure you discard them immediately if they are cracked.
Dog treat toys
Dog treat toys such Squeeze Bone chew toy, when filled with broken-up dog treats or peanut butter are great for dogs that easily gets bored. The right size can keep a puppy or a dog busy for several hours. Only if your dog chew diligently can he have access to the treats, and only in small bits – which can be very rewarding to them! Make sure you check with your veterinarian about whether or not you should give peanut butter to your dog.
Dog toys rotation
Keep a variety of types and rotate your dog’s toys weekly by making different toys available at a time. But if your dog has a huge favorite, it’s better to leave it out all the time.
Most of your dog toys should be interactive. Interactively playing is very important for your dog because your dog needs active “people time”. Your dog can expel pent-up mental and physical energy in a limited amount of time and space by focusing on a specific task like repeatedly returning a ball or playing hide-and-seek with dog treats or dog toys. This will greatly reduce the stress due to confinement, isolation or boredom.
Interactive play also offers and opportunity for socialization and helps your dog learn about appropriate and inappropriate behavior with other people and animals.