Finding the right toys for dogs who love to chew
Have you ever found yourself looking at dog toys and just thinking “my dog would destroy these in seconds”? Have you ever, after careful selection, brought a new toy home and within a few days (sometimes even a few minutes) the toy is already in pieces? Then the chances are that your delightful dog is a hardcore chewer. This can make choosing the right toys for them more difficult, especially in terms of your dog’s safety, but below is all the information you need to pick strong, safe toys that your pooch will love.
If your dog has a tendency to destroy toys then soft/plush, vinyl, rope and squeaker toys can be problematic. They can be pulled apart relatively easily by a strong chewer, and when broken down the pieces (such as stuffing, chunks of vinyl, strings from a rope or loose squeakers) can be dangerous if ingested. If you do give a chewer any of these types of toys then you must not leave them with the toy unsupervised, and you must make sure that they do not eat any of the parts or contents. However, if you are looking for durable options that are fun and serve a similar purpose to vinyl and rope toys, then these options from Planet Dog, Tuffables and Kong are excellent alternatives.
Fortunately, there are lots of toys out there that are especially designed for withstanding hardcore chewing. If your dog loves to play with a ball but you find that they chew tennis balls to death in a matter of days, then you can go for reinforced rubber versions instead, like these ones from Kong and Planet Dog.
Standard Frisbees when chewed can end up with very sharp edges, and your dog could ingest a sharp piece of plastic. If your dog loves to play Frisbee or with other flyer toys, but you cannot trust them around a standard Frisbee, then these versions from Tuffables and Kong are the answer for you!
Food toys can be excellent for dogs who love to chew, and they are definitely more exciting that chewing on all the things they shouldn’t! Hard, edible chews are great, but they should only really be given as treats, they are often large, and a strong chewer will finish an edible chew (such as rawhide) very quickly. Whereas strong, reinforced rubber food toys, like this one from Kong, are reusable and you can control how much (if any) food you choose to put in. You can fill the Kong to let your dog work and chew the toy for their meal, or you can just put a tiny smear of xylitol-free peanut butter inside to peak their interest. Even when completely empty, it can still be quite enjoyable to chew for your dog because of its shape.
Selecting the right size toy is important if you have a dog that loves to chew. If the toy is too small then your dog will be able to move it right to the back of its jaws, where they can create an amazing amount of force, reducing the life expectancy of the toy. If the toy is too large then it will be no fun to chew, and your dog may decide to chew on something else instead. The perfect size allows your dog to get their mouth around the toy, but does not allow them to chew exclusively with their back teeth.
All the toys mentioned above are designed for strong chewers and make out of very durable materials. However, it is important to note that no dog toy is completely indestructible, so it is always recommended to check toys regularly for safety, discard any showing strong signs of wear or damage, and supervise the use of toys wherever possible.
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