Essential Toys for Dogs to Keep Them Happy
Dogs, like children, do get bored, which is one of the reasons we buy toys for our dogs. Another reason is that toys may be used to increase the amount of physical exercise dogs get.
Of course you can use existing items, like sticks or pine cones, to keep dogs occupied, but these can damage a dog’s teeth, and if brought into the house, can make an awful mess.
The type of toys you choose for your dog will depend on its size, and sometimes also its breed. Here are a few of the most popular doggie toys in Australia.
Toys to throw
Many breeds of dog love to chase objects and fetch them. So at the top of any list of toys to throw, you will find balls, followed by Frisbee-like toys.
While ordinary tennis balls may be used for doggie playtime, a dog with a penchant for chewing is likely to go through them quite quickly. Some rubber balls are also suitable, although they should be reasonably solid. Plastic balls are not suitable for dogs, and nor are any type of blow up balls.
There are many different dog ball-toys on the market, most made for dogs that tend to be destructive. Enduro Balls, for example are tough and hardwearing and ideal for dogs that play aggressively, like Staffies, Cattle Dogs, Cocker spaniels and Border Collies and they come in different sizes.
Then there are bouncy Everlasting balls that can be filled with treats, just like the skittle-shaped Kong Wobbler and the Kong Biscuit Ball.
Various Cuz balls are made with legs, so they don’t always roll away. But you can still throw them and have loads of interactive fun with your four legged friend.
Toys to chew
Apart from rubber balls which dogs can chew without destroying, there are a myriad of other rubber toys that are great for chewing. The black Kong, for example is made of extra-tough rubber making it virtually indestructible. Both this and the Canine Genius Leo Dog toy – also hugely chewable – may be used to dispense treats. Made of the same black rubber as the dispenser Kong, the Kong Goodie Bone – Extreme is perfect for even the most destructive and tenacious chewers.
Then there are various rubber bones, like the Bouncy Bone which is made with a central rubber ball, and tough nylon ends that are said to last more than ten times as long as rawhide. This may also be used to dispense treats. Also the Chuckle Barbell, the Waggle Barbell and the Dental Kong, which was designed to squeegee dog’s teeth and gums clean while they chew.
The Dogzilla Artic Bone is another chew toy, but specifically for summer play because you freeze water in it so that it becomes effectively half rubber and half ice.
Relatively new on the market is the Planet Dog Orbee-tuff Puppy Bone that is made with a soothing formula that will make teething less paining for puppies. Rogz Pupz Jaw Gym is another bone-shaped chew toy for puppies.
Home alone toys
In a society where many couples both go out to work, dogs are often left at home alone. For this reason manufacturers have come up with various items aimed at keeping dogs occupied without human help.
Following the theme of filling balls and other toys with treats, home alone solutions include hanging treat balls. The dog pulls on the grip and releases the treats – or if there aren’t treats inside the ball, just tugs and the grip. Different sizes suit different breeds.
But just remember that for all dogs, interactive play is good for the soul and good for the spirit. After all a dog is man’s best friend.