Dogs love playing and chewing with dog toys as much as owners enjoy playing with their dogs. Just like children’s toys, there are many different types and styles of dog toys for owners to choose from. These toys can help owners by raising motivation levels in training, enriching games during playtime, and chasing away boredom or anxiety.
Owners must carefully decide which dog toys will be most helpful and enjoyable for their canine companions. Safety is another issue that must be considered when shopping for dog toys, If you decide to keep a dog, there are innumerable dog toys to cover a variety of your pet’s need, making the decision of which ones to buy quite daunting and difficult.
Your Canine Needs Dog Toys
There are a variety of toys made for many different reasons, some of which are mostly designed for your dog’s chewing and playing needs. However, many dog owners wonder if these toys are truly necessary. Why do dogs need toys in their daily life?
Generally speaking, dog toys help to keep your canine companions balanced, healthy and well-conditioned, and can also strengthen the connection and relationship between owners and their pets. Dogs can easily burn off calories to help stay fit and in good shape by playing with dog toys that promote exercise and activity. Toys are also great training tools, perfect for teaching dogs how to fetch, follow or perform tricks. Other toys can motivate dogs by making a squeaky sound.
Toys can also keep your dog from becoming tense, anxious, restless and bored. For example, some toys allow owners to stash tasty treats inside, often keeping your dog busy for hours. If your dog is teething, dog toys provide the excellent chewing option which will help by soothing sore gums and loosening puppy teeth.
If there are no appropriate dog toys for your canine to chew on, your shoes and other household items may suffer the consequences. Even an adult dog needs dog toys to chew on, which will help maintain good jaw muscles and healthy gums.
Understanding the Types of Dog Toys
As a dog owner, you must understand how necessary and beneficial dog toys can be for your beloved canine. However, because of the huge selection found online and in pet stores, owners can easily feel overwhelmed and unsure of which toys to buy?
Usually, the type of dog toys you should purchase will depend on several factors, including your dog’s personal style of playing and chewing. Below you will find a list of the types of dog toys available, and some basic information on how each toy can benefit both dogs and their owners.
Ball Dog Toys
Ball toys are the most common dog toys in most canine owner’s homes and kennels, available in several different sizes and designs, such as a soccer ball, basketball, tennis ball or football. Additionally, some ball type dog toys have been designed with flashing light or hidden compartments for dog treats.
Generally, owners will provide larger size ball dog toys for giant dogs and smaller ball dog toys for tiny canines. There are no special breeds to consider when purchasing a ball toy, as all dogs love to play fetch and follow a ball around. Owners should be careful not to purchase a ball that is too large or too small. Extremely small ball toys should be monitored closely as their small sizes could be dangerous if accidentally swallowed.
Every dog needs a ball toy, especially those which are active and need plenty of exercise. Owners should keep an eye on their dogs’ teeth to watch for dental issues, as the teeth can wear down. When your dog’s ball starts to show signs of wear, toss the toy in the trash and purchase a new one, as fraying pieces could lead to choking or gastrointestinal obstruction.
Non- Plush Squeaky Dog Toys
Typically, these squeaky dog toys are made out of vinyl, plastic and rubber, and are designed in an assortment of different sizes, colors and shapes. Normally made of thick rubber, squeaky dog toys are great for aggressive chewers because of their unique durability.
Non-plush squeaky dog toys are built to last, and an excellent way to give your dog a good chewing workout. Whether the exterior is soft or smooth, and made of vinyl or latex, squeaky dog toys are ideal for older dogs with sensitive teeth and gums. These dog toys are also equipped with a great squeaky sound, providing mental and physical stimulation, keeping dogs alert and challenged while discouraging destructive behaviors.
Owners should choose at least one or two Frisbee dog toys if your dog loves to fetch and chase his toys. These disc shaped dog toys will challenge your dog to chase while owners can easily vary the speed and direction for optimum safety. Frisbee dog toys are normally made of rubber, plastic, rope or other safe and durable materials.
Owners should always choose a retrieving toy that has been constructed with rope or similar material to protect your dog’s sensitive mouth, teeth and gums. If you and your dog enjoy playing with Frisbee style dog toys, these can also be used as great training tools involving activities such as fetch and retrieval.
Plush Dog Toys
Many dogs love soft and cuddly toys, which seem to have a calm and soothing effect on their moods. Owners should purchase plush toys for puppies to help with easing weaning and offering comfort when they their mother. Soft plush dog toys can also provide warmth and add security when a dog feels alone in his new surroundings.
Adult dogs usually like to play ‘hunt and kill’ games or ‘catch and carry’ with soft plush dog toys. You should always supervise your dog when he plays with plush toys to make sure he does not swallow any of the stuffing or squeakers inside. Plush dog toys will not last long with aggressive chewers, or dogs with highly developed teeth. If managed properly, plush dog toys can offer fun and comfort for you and your dog.
Rope Dog Toys
Rope dog toys can be highly beneficial for fetching, chewing and teething, tug-of-war and training purposes. Chewing on a rope toy can actually be good for your dog’s teeth, providing much the same benefits as brushing. Rope dog toys are normally made of braided rope but some may also have rubber or plastic parts.
It is easy to find a wide variety and styles of rope toys made from durable materials in an assortment of colors. Some rope toys will also include a tennis ball, which most dogs love to play with.
Because rope toys can easily shred when aggressive chewers play with rope toys each day, you should never let your dog play with rope toys while unsupervised. Accidental ingestion could lead to serious gastrointestinal obstruction.
Best Tips for Choosing Dog Toys
Choosing the right dog toys for your canine companion should be much easier now that you know the most common types of toys available. As you purchase a small collection of dog toys for your pet, you are doing your part to help keep him keep busy and decrease the number of occurrences of bad behavior. Consider the following helpful tips while choosing dog toys for your fur buddy.
Always consider the age of your dog and his exercise needs. Your dog’s age will have a large impact on choosing the right types of dog toys. Puppies tend to chew much more frequently than older dogs, requiring owners to offer a highly durable dog chew toy. In addition, many adult dogs are strong and more aggressive, which means a rubber dog toy that is harder and more durable may prove to be a more appropriate choice.
Owners should consider the size of their dog when purchasing appropriate and safe dog toys. Remember, as a dog owner, you should never buy the wrong size of dog toys for your pet. This is especially true for owners of large dogs, as miniature toys could easily cause a life threatening emergency. Dog toys that are too large may be difficult for your dog to fetch or enjoy. Find a perfect size dog toys for your beloved companion to protect your pet from danger and choking hazards.
When purchasing dog toys, always consider the playing location and how much space you dog will have to run and frolic. Consider the location where you plan to frolic and play with your dog. Will the dog toy be used inside your home or outside? For example, Frisbee dog toys are great for playing fetch at the park, but playing inside your home could be dangerous. Squeaky dog toys and plush dog toys are ideal for indoor games, but how safe will they be after being soiled or dragged through the dirt?
Dog toys can be easily damaged or torn apart, causing serious health problems if any small pieces or parts are accidentally swallowed. Always supervise your pet with any type of dog toy and buy replacements at the first sign of damage. One of the most important things you can do for your dog is choose the right dog toys to protect his health, and promote regular exercise and activity, replacing dog toys when necessary.