It’s no secret that dogs like to chew on things. It’s a natural behavior that exercises their jaws and keeps their teeth and gums healthy. It also relieves the pain of teething for puppies. If you don’t provide an outlet for the behavior with dog chew toys, you could end up with a very unhappy, and potentially destructive, dog.
A tough chew toy can keep the natural drive to chew under control and can even help manage behavioral problems such as separation anxiety and excessive barking. A quality dog toy can keep your pet busy both physically and mentally, which means he’ll be less inclined to get into trouble.
Indestructible dog toys
You should have a few toys available for your puppy to play with. A good strategy is to have two sets of dog toys that you can rotate every week or two. This will keep your dog from getting bored with a particular toy. Favorite toys can also be used as rewards for good behavior or for when you leave your dog home alone.
It can be difficult to find an indestructible dog toy because there are dogs out there that can destroy just about anything. But there are some very tough toys available. The following are well-known among dog owners and stand up well to chewing abuse.
The West Paw company guarantees this dog chew toy against destruction. If your puppy or dog manages to break one, you can send it back for a free replacement. It comes in two sizes and resembles the shape of a bone. The Hurley indestructible dog toy bounces, floats, and is completely bendable. It’s also constructed from recyclable materials making it environmentally sound.
There’s also a ball version called the Huck that’s made with the same material as the Hurley and comes with West Paw’s replacement guarantee.
The original Kong dog chew toy was created in 1976 and set the standard for toughness. The Kong is made from a natural rubber material and comes in a variety of styles and sizes. The toy is somewhat unique in that the center is hollow, which allows you to stuff it with food or treats. Trying to get the treats out of the Kong can keep your puppy or dog occupied for quite awhile. This may be particularly useful if you leave your dog home alone for extended periods of time.
Dog toy safety
The following are some things to keep in mind when giving your puppy or dog a chew toy.
Supervise your dog when introducing new toys
You should never leave your pet alone with a new dog chew toy unless you’re certain it’s safe and he can use it properly.
Inspect toys regularly
You should check for sharp edges, cracks, chips, or any other sign of damage every few days. Also, even an indestructible dog toy can be outgrown, so make sure you replace smaller toys that may choke your puppy or dog.
Be wary of toys with synthetic stuffing, squeakers, or plastic parts
These types of toys generally aren’t as durable as one-piece rubber or nylon toys. The various parts can pose a choking hazard, and synthetic stuffing can be toxic if your dog swallows it. Always supervise your dog when he plays with toys of this nature.