|Avoid toys made of thin rubber.|
So what's the big deal about buying toys? Wouldn't a trip to the dollar store for a bunch of small squeeky things do the trick. Actually that could be a disaster. The first thing you should consider when buying a puppy toy is safety. You don't want to buy a toy that is meant for children and find the rubber is so soft your doggy tears pieces off, or pulls out the squeekers. What if he swallowed some of these parts? It could mean a trip to the veterinary.
The first rule of thumb is to buy toys for dogs that are meant for dogs. Next find a toy that is breed appropriate. I owned a Border Collie many years ago. There were very few toys on the market that would not be destroyed in the first few minutes....His jaws were that strong. I quickly figured out that sturdy rubber balls, and heavy duty Kong toys (the largest sizes) were the only kind that were safe for him.
Things to consider:
1. Choose the right size. Small toys are good, as long as they are not too small that they can be ingested.
2. Make sure there are no detachable parts. This includes ribbons strings, plastic eyes...and especially squeekers. The metal part that squeeks on some rubber toys also can be swallowed.
3.Don't buy a toy with sharp or protruding parts
4. Do buy a variety of chew toys! The dogs need them especially during teething. Nylabones are considered the safest bones because they don't splinter...but try to get ones that are not too big and tough for a young puppy.
5. Don't be too beguiled by cute toys. After all, your dog doesn't care about all the bright colors...your dog doesn't care if his toy looks just like him. Basically the cuteness won't make a difference to the dog. And after all isn't your puppy all the cuteness you need?.
|A floppy Wooly sheep...my dogs will love it!|
Doggy Toy Stuffed Animals
There are many cloth toys made for dogs. The ones that do not contain stuffing are better than those with stuffing. Some contain squeekers inside. These toys need to be checked often, so you can remove the toy if it gets any holes or becomes shredded in any way. I am very selective about the stuffed animal toys that I buy. I use them sparingly because don't want them to think they can play with my children's stuffed animals. We like to use them for games. For instance, we might hide a soft toy during 'hide and seek' games. Using the command "Go find the toy!" our dogs will run around in excitement trying to sniff it out. Generally I prefer rope toys to cloth toys...because they last longer. The dogs still enjoy running with them and chewing on them....but they are not so easily confused with people clothes or kid toys.
Treat Stuffing Toys:
- KONG Puppy rubber toys are ideal for training, rewarding, and getting your puppy through that terrible teething phase.
- Stuff’N Puppy Easy Treat and Stuff’N Puppy Snacks are great for stuffing puppy KONGs.
- Puppy Wubba is a fun squeaky toy. Your puppy will love to play fetch and tug games with it.
|The typical raw hide treat|
There is a lot of controversy over Raw hide chews. The benefits of the Raw hide chew is that dogs love them, and they satisfy the dogs natural urge to chew, helps with teething and cleans teeth. The danger is that if the dog chews off a small piece they could easily get lodged in the throat and cause a blockage. If a blockage results surgery could be required, and if not resolved a blockage can lead to death. Some say the risks are not very high when you consider the number of dogs that do eat raw hides without any problems....but I still feel there are safer choices.
So if you choose to give your dogs raw hides you must keep an eye on them. Remove the little pieces that may get broken off. Remove the rawhide when it gets very small. We are warned to watch the dog eating the rawhide to remove it if he breaks off pieces small enough to choke on.
A safer alternative to Raw Hides and Bones are the Bully stick. It is made from ....I know this is disgusting...the bull penis. They are apparently very appealing to dogs, and fully digestible. But I have never bought them....yes, they gross me out!
I would also never purchase Bones or Bully Sticks because they are likely to make a dogs beard stinky and smelly. This is an important consideration with a bearded dog.
Nutritional Chew Treats
-Do NOT give before 6 mths of age. Be sure to give the size that is appropriate for your dog.
-They are suppose to be digestible, but some instance have occurred where dogs had blockages caused by this treat.
- The instances are not common given the fact that millions of treats are consumed by dogs every year. Nonetheless, be cautious with this treat like all chews. Be sure your dog chews it into small pieces. If he tends to eat it without chewing sufficiently, then discontinue use.
So as you see, there is a whole lot of choices out there for chews and toys. Buy a variety of different ones so you can rotate them daily for your pup. By keeping him occupied and interested, he learns to entertain himself alone in a confined space. This reduces unwanted behaviors, crying, barking and separation anxiety. By teaching him appropriate chew objects, he is less likely to chew on your valued possessions. I hope this guide gives you some ideas when choosing your puppy toys! Check out all my favorite toys and chews in the Our Shop page of our BLOG under the category, Toys and Chews.