Squeakers, Plushies, Balls and Bones… OH MY! How to Choose the Right Toys for Your Dog
From romping and chomping to some good old fashion fetching, dog toys are a blast for pets and pet owners too! However, finding the right toy for your pup can be ruff!
For our furry friends, toys are not just fun and games. Dogs need mental stimulation to stay fit, healthy, and happy. Toys help fight boredom, provide comfort, and can even prevent your angel puppy from developing destructive behaviors.
So, whether you've got a new puppy joining the family or just looking to surprise your longtime companion, here are some tips on choosing the perfect toys for your pup.
What Do Dogs Want?
Just like how some humans prefer video games over board games, what’s fun for one dog may not interest or be safe for another. Every dog is unique, and luckily, there are hundreds of toys available to fit your furry friend’s play needs. Just remember the size, age, and sometimes breed of dog should all be factored in when it comes to playtime.
While it may look cute when your little pup goes for the biggest bone in the store or your giant German Sheppard wants to play with the little ball. There’s a reason most toys have age and weight recommendations on the package.
For example, flat-faced dogs like our beloved Frenchies can have some issues with carrying toys and breathing through their mouths at the same time. So, it may take a little trial and error before you find that perfect toy that becomes your pup’s favorite.
Pup-ular Types of Dog Toys
Soft Plush Comfort Toys
This type of toy will distinguish whether your dog is a chewer or cuddler. Some dogs will proudly carry their plush toys around like a baby. It becomes their snuggle buddy and companion when you are not home.
Our Frenchie Plush Toys are perfect for gentler dogs who enjoy light chew sessions, games of fetch and cuddle time. However, there is another type of dog who loves plush toys for a less sweet reason. For these pups, their natural instinct to “hunt” takes over, and they will tear the plush apart like prey.
No, this doesn’t mean the plush toy is a total loss. After the toy is “dead,” your dog will most likely continue to show off their kill, shaking it from time to time. While many pet parents do not enjoy cleaning up the scattered remains of plush toys, this type of play is very rewarding for your dog -- after all, he's a champion now!
Just make sure that if your dog likes to attack their plushies, they do so only when closely supervised and avoid soft toys with squeakers and small plastic parts.
It’s dog vs. pet parent in a classic match of tug-o-war. Who will win? Everyone, of course!
Usually, these types of toys are made of rope, leather, or durable rubber. Perfect for pups who love a little 1-on-1 tug contest.
An added benefit of rope toys is that they can effectively keep your dog’s teeth healthy. As your dog chews, the fibers work as a type of doggy floss to help prevent dental disease.
Is your dog an aggressive chewer, trying to destroy any toy in its path, or does he nibble more so than chew? Will your dog need a toy to keep him busy while you're away, or will he be supervised during play? These are the types of things you need to consider when choosing a good chew toy.
Chew toys are often made of latex or rubber and come complete with a squeaker that usually drives pet parents a little crazy-- but who can say no to those playful puppy eyes?
There are also rawhide chews and bones, which can help support a dog's dental health, although every toy and brand is different. Make sure to search for reputable brands using unprocessed ingredients or safe preservation practices. You should always check with your veterinarian first about which ones are safe and appropriate for your dog. These toys may pose choking hazards and should only be given to your dog when you can supervise them.
They don’t call it having a ball for nothing! A ball is a must-have toy for any dog that loves to play fetch. Choose from the basic tennis ball or rubber ball to balls with squeakers or ones that hide treats. Make sure to pick one large enough for your dog to carry without accidentally swallowing it but small enough to hold in the mouth comfortably.
No matter what kind of playtime your dog prefers, there will always be a toy they will love. Finding out their preferences is all part of the fun!
And while we have you, don’t forget to shop our cute collection of Frenchie Plush Toys! Post your playtime pictures videos on social media, and tag us @frenchie_bulldog on Instagram!