What are the best dog toys for chewers? For me the best dog toy for chewers has to be from Kong. They make dog toys from quality material and are designed to be not only durable, but also entertaining for your dog. The KONG Classic Dog Toy is durable, fun and can be stuffed with a treat. It also comes in various sizes, so you can choose the best size to suit your dog!
What are the best dog toys for chewers? Dogs like to chew on things. Especially younger dogs that still have itchy gums! That is just the way it is. So rather than your dog destroying your furniture, shoes, pillows and who know what else, a better option is to get a chew toy that will not only satisfy their chewing needs, but also hopefully keep them entertained for a little bit.
Chewing is a natural thing for dog. Puppies chew to learn about the world around them (much like human babies like to put things in their mouths and taste it) and to help itchy gums. Adult dogs chew to keep their masticatory (chewing) muscles strong, help clean their teeth or sometimes just to pass the time. So really, it is in your dog’s best health interest that you give it a chew toy that they can chew to their heart’s content.
All dogs chew the same, right? Well, apparently not. Dogs can actually be divided into three different categories in terms of their chewing habits.
Gentle Chewers – These are the dogs that are easy on their chew toys. They usually like to lick or even suck on their toys, rather than trying to destroy it!
Average Chewers – Average chewers like most types of chew toys! They usually like their toys so much that they tend to carry the toys with them where ever they go. These dogs might be destructive on softer chew toys, such as plush or fabric toys, but will not necessarily be very destructive on harder toys, such as rubber chew toys.
Power Chewers – These are the dogs that make it their mission to chew things up as quickly and as thoroughly as they can! They are what I like to call determined chewers. For these dogs you will need to choose a dog toy that is durable and interactive. If your dog is a power chewer, you might want to look at something like the KONG Extreme Dog Toy. It is specifically made for dogs that are powerful chewers.
For some tips on how to teach your dog to stop gnawing on everything in site, check out this article from The Humane Society.
So it seems chewing is a natural thing for your dog. It is actually even good for them! But how do you choose the best dog toy for a chewer?
When I look for a chew toy for my dog, there are a few important things I look for in the toy. Every dog is different of course, so you need to think about how old your dog is, how big it is and how heavy a chewer it is.
Rawhides and Pig Ears – You probably see a lot of these and they are usually an affordable option to consider. But I would not pick this is the best option when it comes to dog toys for chewers. The simple reason being that these rawhides can get lodged in your dog’s trachea (“windpipe”), which could cause choking. A piece of rawhide could also get stuck in your dog’s stomach, a resulting in digestive obstruction.
Edible Chew Treats – Your dog will probably really like these, but if you have a serious chewer on your hands then this is not a good option for you either. Simply, it will not last very long! You could however give your dog these as a treat in combination with a more durable/traditional chew toy. The benefit of these treats are that they usually help with your dog’s dental health. Give your dog too much of this, and it will of course get fat!
Cow Hooves – Cows hooves are also a common and affordable option for you to find, but as they can be quite hard they can break your dog’s teeth or even splinter. Splinters can cause injuries to your dog’s mouth or digestive tract. Even though they are affordable, I prefer to stay away from them.
Elk/Deer Antlers – There are some good reasons for antlers being really popular as chew toys for dogs. Antlers are natural (so no need to worry about suspicious chemicals) and are sustainably harvested (Deer and Elk shed their antlers naturally, so no need to feel bad for the Deer or Elk). But…similar to Cow hooves, antlers can break your dog’s teeth (antlers are really hard!). In fact, antlers have caused so many injuries to dogs that plenty of veterinarians and veterinary dentists have started issuing warnings to pet owners about antlers as chew toys for dogs.
Bully Sticks – This is another chew toy for dogs that is popular. You will probably see these sticks in most pet stores. Dogs love them and a lot of dog owners swear by them. But, there are some pitfalls to using these sticks. This includes an increase in your dog’s calorie intake (making them fatter than they should be). Some of these sticks can also have some nasty bacteria on them that will make your dog sick. Oh and by the way…these “sticks” are actually bull penises!
Rubber Chew Toys – Rubber dog toys are usually the safest and most durable dog toy option for chewers. You need to make sure that if you do go for the rubber option, that the toy is made from quality rubber, and not flimsy cheap rubber. Cheap rubber will not last nearly as long and might contain ingredients that are not very healthy for your dog. There is also a much smaller chance with quality rubber toys that a piece will come loose from the toy and get stuck in your dog’s digestive system. I also like that I don’t have to worry much that my dog’s teeth might break.
I usually like to look for a toy that is hollow so that I can put a treat or maybe some peanut butter inside. You will be pleasantly surprised how long this can keep your dog entertained!
Rope Chew Toys – I like rope chew toys because they are not hard, so less chance of your dog breaking its teeth. It is also the typical toy that your dog enjoys tugging on with you, which makes for fun play time for you and your dog. However, I would be careful to give a rope toy to a younger dog. The simple reason being that I am a little paranoid about a puppy possibly trying to swallow a piece of the rope, which will result in a panicked visit to the vet! If your dog is a heavy chewer, a rope chew toy might come undone quickly.
Okay, so now that we know what to look for in a dog toy for chewers and what kind of chew toys to avoid, we can look at some toys that might be excellent choices for our little chewers!
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Kong is one of the best known brands in the pet industry and is known for making high quality dog toys. A lot of dog owners only ever buy Kong toys for their dogs.
This particular toy is something that ticks most, if not all, the boxes for what I look for in a dog toy:
You can order this toy in different sizes, so you can order the size that best suits your dog. What I also like about this toy is that it is specified as being made in the USA!
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If you want a dog chew toy that you can also use when you play with your dog, this chew rope package is a great option. It is a pack of three, with three ropes of different sizes. So you can pick the size of rope that works best with the size of your dog. The shortest rope is approximately 10 inches, while the longest rope in the pack is approximately 20 inches.
It is made from recycled cotton rope and is designed to not easily fray. As it is made from cotton, it is easily cleaned by throwing it in the washing machine.
I like to play tug-of-war with my dogs, so this rope toy is something I really like. I also like the design of the toy where the knots in the rope helps to clean your dog’s teeth while they chew on it.
If you dog is a power chewer, a rope chew toy might not be the best option as they will likely manage to unravel the rope pretty quickly. I would rather get this rope toy for gentle chewers or maybe average chewers.
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Remember how I mentioned in the checklist to be careful of dog chew toys that are coated for flavoring, as it might upset your dog’s stomach? If I was looking for a flavored toy for my dog, this is probably the toy I would pick. It is flavored using real ingredients in order to give a real bacon taste! While I cannot guarantee that this toy will not cause your dog an upset tummy, there is little to no feedback from folks who have used this toy that it caused their dog any issues.
The toy is made from nylon to make it strong and durable, while having a curved wishbone design to help your dog get a good chewing position!
Take note that the manufacture does not recommend this toy for dogs that are more than 70 pounds in size.
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One of my favorite things to do on a beautifully sunny day is to play fetch outside with my pup. He gets some exercise and we spend some quality time together.
If your dog is a power chewer, then this rubber ball from Kong is an excellent option to consider. It is from their “Extreme” range, so it is specifically designed for power chewers.
It is made from rubber, which makes it very bouncy….and that makes for a lot of fun! It is 3 inches in total length (making it roughly the size of a tennis ball) and has a hole drilled through the center, which gives your dog some nice grip when it has a chew on it.
This toy is intended for medium/large dogs. So if your dog is still just a tiny puppy or a small dog, then this is perhaps not the best dog toy to consider (it is a little heavy, so a small dog might struggle with it).
I am sure you have tried a bunch of different toys for your little chewer. What have you found works best? Are there other toys that you think are the best dog toys for chewers, which is not on our list?
Please share your experience of dog chew toys with us by commenting in the comments section below. We would love to hear from you!
What are the best dog toys for Pit Bulls? To prevent Rover from turning your sofa into fake snow, maybe you should get him some toys! However, Rover is an American Pit Bull Terrier (or Pit Bull for short) which means you need the toughest toys known to man, or do you?
Although Pitt Bulls rate highly on jaw strength and bite force, they do not have the strongest bite of all breeds as is often thought. Amongst others, German Shepherds and Rottweilers trump Pit Bulls in the “how hard can you bite” stakes.
Nevertheless, for their size Pit Bulls do have one of the strongest bites of all breeds, are exceptionally energetic, persistent and rank highly in intelligence too. Choosing a toy to cope with all these demands may not be easy, so, let’s take a look at what toys are best for my Pit Bull.
First up, Little Mr or Miss Bully may prefer your favourite pair of Hush Puppies over his expensive designer toys, because your shoes have interesting smells from the places you’ve been or because they contain your scent. As a side note, the simplest way to prevent unwanted damage is to keep “no-no” items out of the reach of Jimmy Chew.
Moreover, if you catch your pup in the act of gnawing on your favourite pair of Uggs, try to take the shoes away without making eye contact or talking to your dog. Scolding may be perceived as attention (good or bad) which could reinforce bad behaviour. Do however make a big fuss, when your pup opts for an appropriate toy instead.
The first thing to do before choosing a toy is making sure it is safe. One of the most common risks is choking, particularly if to toy is too small or pieces can separate or break off. But what is the right size?
Some toy manufacturers put indications on the packaging, stating the size or weight of the dog for which the toy is suitable. As a simple rule of thumb, if the entire toy fits into the dog’s mouth easily, it is too small. Keep in mind that your Pit Bull puppy will grow at a rapid rate, particularly in the first 40 weeks (+- 9 months) of its life, and could continue to grow up to age of 2 years, although your puppy should be close to adult size after a year.
Thus, it may be wise to opt for a toy that may seem too big, as many Pit Bull owners have discovered, as long as your puppy can handle the toy, a seemingly oversized toy posing a challenge to handle offers excellent stimulation. An old partially deflated football or soccer ball is generally enjoyable for the puppies to drag around and get in to. However, be mindful of pieces of ball that may tear off and cause problems if ingested by your pup.
For teething puppies there are freezable dog chew toys such as the:
Mushroomcat Arctic Freeze Cooling Teether Dog Toy – It is filled with 100% purified water and can be placed in the freezer and it has a cavity to place a treat in which is tricky to extract, to pep up interest in the toy.
SHENNOSI® Arctic Freeze Fetch Food Cooling Puppy Teether chew Toy – Under the tough outer layer is a sponge that can absorb water. The toy can be frozen and will gradually release water as your pup chews on it, whilst the coolness soothes teething aches.
Lukove Pet Dog Chew Toy and Teething Chew Puzzle Training Dumbbell Arctic Cooling Freeze Fetch Food Rubber Chew To – Like the other Artic Freeze toys, it is filled with purified water. This option comes with an additional puzzle toy to hide snacks which Pittie can try and pry from the toy, keeping him or her occupied for a while.
All three of the aforementioned toys have received good reviews, for the most part, from people who own “heavy chewers”. These toys will withstand reasonable abuse, whilst providing distraction and relief.
Here are some of the top toys that regularly feature in toy reviews that are particularly suitable for Pit Bulls, due to their toughness:
The Kong extreme range which includes:
These Kong extreme dog toy comes in a variety of shapes and sizes, with holes in which you can put peanut butter, a treat or even your dog’s pellets, that your Notorious D.O.G can try and get out. Although the aforementioned toys are pretty tough, some owners have reported their new Kong not lasting 30 minutes when left to the mercy of their Pitt Bull’s chompers. Nevertheless, many a Pit Bull owner has asserted that their Pitt Bulls love these toys and that the Kongs have withstood weeks or months of punishment.
The Nylabone range of play bones, which include:
The Nylabones are renowned for their toughness. Furthermore, the flavoured range is good for dogs that are not interested in “ordinary” toys but that are more food driven. These bones, as said in the names, are non-edible and thus carry no nutritional value, yet will keep Rover occupied for hours.
Should your dog accidently ingest a small piece of the toy it should pass through his / her / it’s system harmlessly due to its design and the non-toxic material it’s made from.
These balls are described as ultra-durable, are perforated so your dog can get a grip with its teeth and come in 6”and 10”options.
The West Paw design Zogoflex Tux.
The Zogoflex is made in the USA and according to the manufacturer it’s “as close to indestructible dog toys you’ll find.” The manufacturer also provides a refund and replace warranty, if the toy does not perform as expected. Similar to the Kong range it features cavities to hide treats in. West Paw also has a large range of other durable dog toys in all shapes and sizes.
The GoughNuts Stick Maxx.
It is also manufactured in the USA and according to its makers “virtually indestructible”. One of its unique features, is that it comes with a built in replacement indicator, as can be seen in the picture.
The manufacturer states as follows: “If your dog chews through the outside wear layer of any GoughNuts Ring or Stick, Green, Black, Yellow or Orange, to expose the indication layer, Red, GoughNuts will replace your toy. GoughNuts, “Chew Toy Safety Indicator” is a mechanism for the dog owner to see a clear indication of when to take the GoughNut from the dog.””
Pitt Bulls tend to enjoy tugging toys. There are many tough rope and ball-n-rope options to choose from that are great for a bit of ‘tug-o-war’. Some of the options include:
For the Pit Bull that sees itself as a tire (tyre for our non-USA readers) connoisseur, TireBiter PawTracks makes chew toys, shaped like real vehicle tires. Made from heavy-duty, natural rubber, with 2-ply nylon flossing fibres embedded in the rubber to help remove plaque build-up. The tires come in small (6 Inch), medium (8 Inch), and large (10 Inch).
There are plenty of dog toys designed for brain stimulation, particularly for when Sherlock Bones is left home alone. These toys require the dog to figuring out a puzzle in order for the toy to dispense a treat or do something else such as shoot a ball etc.
A word of caution: Your Sherlock Bones may prefer to “solve the puzzle” by simply breaking open the toy to get to the treats inside. These puzzle toys are not made to cope with the demands of aggressive chewers. However, as a training aid, such puzzle toys can still be very useful when used under supervision.
As an alternative you may also look at something tougher, such as:
Tennis ball are great for playing fetch with your Pitt Bull, however, it is best not to leave your dog unsupervised with a tennis ball. Although old tennis balls may seem durable and chewy, keep in mind that, unlike all the toys mentioned earlier in this article, tennis balls are not made from dog friendly non-toxic materials and could be harmful if ingested.
In addition, a tennis ball is a choking hazard as it can split in half and get lodged in your dog’s throat. The same goes for tires. Tires are usually steelbelted and could cause injury. So please keep an eye on your Pitt Bull, if he or she likes to swing from a tire hanging in the back yard.
Staying on the topic of things to avoid, you should not to give your dog cooked bones to chew on as cooked bones have a tendency to splinter risking harm to your dog’s gums, teeth and even internal injuries.
Lastly, please keep in mind that a toy shouldn’t substitute play time between you and your dog. Put some time aside to play with your furry friend and remember to take Woofie for regular walks, as walks are great for stimulation with exposure to different environments and interesting smells and alleviate doggy stress.