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Dog Toys: For Your Pet's Physical & Mental Fitness

Updated on September 11, 2009

Dog Toys Are Not Just For Playtime Fun!

Dog toys are not just for playtime fun. They can help your pet pass the time while you're away at work and they can be instrumental in a dog's mental and physical fitness. Specially designed dog toys will even benefit a dog's dental health. Some feature minty fresh centers for good smelling breath or raised rubber nubs that protect against plaque and tartar build-up. Any dog is ready and willing to explore or play with a new stuffy, but purchasing a dog toy requires some careful consideration.

In order for a dog toy to be safe it should be relative to the dog's preferences, activity level and size. Be careful not to give a dog a toy with loose strings, toxic materials, or small parts. It is very easy for an animal to get a toy or ball lodged in their throat and there have been far too many accidental deaths because of this.

Pets love stuffed dog toys!
Pets love stuffed dog toys!

Proper Dog Toys Must Resist High Bite Pressures

 Dogs have very strong jaws and without meaning to can easily tear a toy apart. As soon as this happens the toy should be discarded so your pet does not ingest any pieces of it. There are chew toys that are meant to be eaten, such as rawhide, pig's ears or animal bones, but should be given to your dog only while you are supervising him.

Kong dog toys have been around since 1976!
Kong dog toys have been around since 1976!

Dog Toys: Balls, Ropes, Discs & More!

 Some of the most common types of toys to buy are rubber balls, puzzle toys, chew toys, rope pulls, rubber Kongs, squeaky toys, stuffed toys and throwing discs.

Rubber balls and throwing discs come in many shapes and sizes and can be important tools for keeping your dog fit and active. Throwing a ball or disc is a fun game for any dog but with the benefit of physical activity. If your dog prefers to play solo, there are multi-sided balls that will bounce every which way when dropped. This can keep your dog, and you, entertained for quite a while. 

Puzzle toys usually incorporate slots or holes to hide treats in and can be a very rewarding game for a pet to try and get the treat out. Handing your dog one of these toys on your way out the door can help decrease separation anxiety or even alleviate boredom while you're away.

Chew toys made of rubber or latex are a great source of entertainment. They are ideal for hard-core chewers, are a safe way for them to satisfy their chew tendencies and have the added benefit of cleaning their teeth and gums! Rubber Kongs are hyped as being indestructible and even have a hollow center to hide a treat in. Some pet owners find it amusing to put peanut butter inside a Kong. I wouldn't advise feeding a pet peanut butter, but it certainly keeps them busy!

How many toys does a dog need? Lots!
How many toys does a dog need? Lots!

Some Of A Canine's Favorite Dog Toys Are Rope Pulls!

 Rope pulls are perfect for a game of tug-of-war but should not be left out for a dog to play with unattended. Over-zealous dogs like to shake their toys and with a heavy knot on each end, a rope pull can do some serious damage inside a house. You might also find that your dog likes to pull the string pieces apart and ingest them. This can wreak havoc on a dog's digestive system.

There are an abundance of squeaky and stuffed toys for a dog that can provide hours of noisy fun. Many dogs will favor one toy over others and even carry it around like a child does with a security blanket. 

It is important that you choose a toy your dog will enjoy playing with but always consider their safety first and foremost. A healthy pet is a happy pet!

An Interview With Joe Markham, Founder of Kong Dog Toys

 Disclaimer: The information on this Hub page does not constitute medical, legal, commercial, product, and/or service advice or endorsement of any vendor, supplier and/or brand, and does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the author. Listing of an entity or service on this Hub page is not a warranty of the quality or efficacy of the products or services furnished by any entity. The author is not directly compensated by any entity other than the advertising placement services shown on this page.

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