Top Toy Picks for Your Pup

May 15, 2019     |      Sophie's Circle

Husky pup with favorite ball toy.In 2018, over $72 billion were spent on pets in the United States. With consumers buying so many pet products, it is no wonder dog toys often take up an entire aisle at the pet store and the choices seem limitless online. So, when you have just adopted a dog into your family, it can be hard to know which options are best for him or her. Here, we will delve into what makes the most popular dog toys so loved by answering these questions.

What size dog do you have?
Before we find that perfect toy, we need to address the risk of purchasing a choking hazard. To avoid this concern, it is important to buy toys that are larger than your dog's mouth. This includes any portion of the toy that may be "accidently" removed. For larger dogs, the toy selection can be narrowed down quite a bit for this reason. However, there are still some awesome choices you can find for any size of dog by answering the next four questions.

Is your dog a big chewer?
If you answered "no" to this question, a comforting stuffed animal, old t-shirt or towel with your scent on it, or a squeaky toy may be an option for your pooch. These are all great options for those dogs who enjoy carrying around something or cuddling up with it without exhibiting an impulse to chew. A great toy for squeaker fans is the Outward Hound Hide-A-Squirrel toy where the squirrels can be tossed, carried, or hidden in the tree. The squirrels are extra fun for all dogs who enjoy the hunt and interaction with their humans.

Please be advised as per the warning above, we do suggest you supervise any squeaky toy playtimes because of the possibility of a choking hazard should the squeaker become separated from the rest of the toy. Also, when other furry friends come over to play, it is always a good idea to pick up these types of toys in case the friends are strong chewers. A trip to the emergency vet is not a nice way to end a play date!

Do you have a curious dog?
Puzzle toys are excellent choices for dogs who are willing to spend the time searching for ways to uncover the treat stored inside. When treats are on the line, some dogs will stop at nothing where others get tired of looking and give up. This is a great discovery opportunity for you to find out which category your dog falls into. For those who keep going until they find the treat, they get rewarded and learn persistence does pay off. After that, this could become your dog's favorite game when you are busy and he is bored or needs distracting.

This IQ Treat Ball Food Dispensing Toy is an example of a toy that requires some effort from your dog to spill the treats. What about the happy chewers out there? This Zogoflex Tux Interactive Treat Dispensing Toy should be built tough enough to withstand some serious pressure. Also, the Zogoflex Quizel Interactive Treat Dispensing Toy is another rewarding puzzle for your chewing friend to solve. What makes puzzle toys so popular is their ability to keep dogs focused on the treat and not the furniture. Naturally, these are not replacements for walks, exercise-related games, or training. But, for a quick distraction, they should do the trick for curious dogs!

If your dog could pick a favorite game, what would it be?
Try these top toy selections with your active dog to see if they make him run faster and jump higher. Squeaky balls for non-chewers or hollow tennis balls for chewers where the tennis ball are covered with a harder outer shell that prevents chewing up the tennis ball inside are loads of fun to throw for your pet to catch and retrieve. Do you like Frisbee? Throw a soft Frisbee, and prepare to be amazed as your energetic pup bounds high in the air with pure competitive joy. 

Different breed traits and your dog's own unique personality often factor into his top picks for interesting toys to play with. Through interactive fun, you will develop a deeper bond with your pet and discover new ways to keep him both healthy and happy. Additionally, toys can work wonders to give your dog a chewing distraction or reward him for persistance. Whichever toys he loves best, moments like finding out what works for him will become those most cherished as your newly adopted dog starts his journey to becoming your loyal best friend.