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The Best Dog Toys for Every Pup

The Best Dog Toys for Every Pup
Published on: November 29, 2017

Every Dog is on the Nice List!

Whether your dog is nice or sometimes naughty, put them on your shopping list this year!  No matter what, every dog deserves something special for the holidays. A new toy is a great way to spoil your pup, and the right toy can even help with holiday anxiety. Take a look at these five types of dog toys to help you choose the perfect one for your furry friend.

Training Dog Toys

A photo of an English Bulldog with a dog toy.

This is a popular time of year for puppy and dog adoptions. However, new pets don’t always have perfect manners. In addition to a good training class, the right toy can help your dog learn. Find a toy your dog really enjoys and use it only for training time. This way, they’ll associate training with something fun. Toys instead of treats is also a good method for dogs that may be food possessive. Use the toy the same way you’d use training treats, when your dog follows a command, let them play with the toy or throw it for them to fetch. Take it away for a bit and repeat the process. This is also a good opportunity to practice “drop it” and “leave it” commands. While they’re learning, choose a toy that’s durable. If your dog enjoys fetch, consider a good throwing toy.

Enrichment Toys

A photo of a terrier playing with one of Orbee's interactive dog toys.While play time outside is a great way to exercise your pet, don’t forget to keep them mentally stimulated, too. Puzzle toys are a great way to alleviate Boredom and keep your pet’s mind active from their puppy years through old age. Look for toys that you can fill with your pet’s favorite treat. This will motivate them to solve the puzzle. Toys with pieces that can be rearranged into different patterns will keep the fun going longer. Once your dog figures out one solution, simply rearrange the parts for a new experience.

Interactive Dog Toys

A photo of two golden retrievers playing with a rope toy.Consider dog toys that are made for you and your dog to play together. These will help create a stronger bond between the two of you in a fun way. Flying disc toys, ball launchers and ropes for tug-o-war are all great options to engage your pet. Keep in mind that these types of toys are meant to be played with under supervision and and shouldn’t be left for your dog to chew on. For instance, a rope toy is fun for you and your dog to play together, but if your dog chews it up fibers could be swallowed and cause a blockage. Save these types of toys for when you and your canine companion can play together.

Self-Amusement Toys

A photo of a doberman playing with one of Outward Hound's durable Bionic dog toys.Self-amusement toys are typically stronger and made of durable materials so dogs can play with them while left at home. These can be useful for dogs that suffer from separation anxiety. Find a toy that your dog likes, particularly ones you can fill with tasty treats or dog-safe peanut butter, and use it only when your dog is alone. This will give them something good to associate with you leaving. The first couple of times you give them the toy, watch and make sure they can’t destroy it. Check the toy whenever you return, and throw it away as soon as you notice damage. You don’t want to risk your dog choking on a piece while you’re not home. Keep in mind that some dogs are active chewers and shouldn’t be left alone with toys. Talk to a team member at your local Wag N’ Wash if you’re not sure.

Comfort Toys

A photo of a terrier gently holding a stuffed pig.These are usually plush toys that your dog can cuddle or sleep with. Not every dog needs a comfort toy and active chewers may try to tear it up. However, some dogs like something soft to carry around or hold. Particularly puppies that have recently been separated from their litter may find comfort in a cuddle toy. Dogs that suffer from anxiety may also like a safety toy and many come with calming drops to put on the toy. Calming drops, usually with natural ingredients like lavender or chamomile, can help relieve your pet during the high stress of the holidays.

Every dog has a different personality and preferences. Some dogs have one favorite toy, others need a lot of different toys. Experiment with a variety of dog toys and find out with types are best suited for your canine companion. Always monitor your pet with a new toy to make sure it’s a good fit. And if you need any help with the perfect gift, ask the team at your local Wag N’ Wash!

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