Unique toy engages your dog in figuring out how to remove treats. Rugged plastic with removable twist-off top is dishwasher safe. Small and large sizes.
Not ideal for some very small or older dogs, but it holds up to serious play and chewing by active dogs.
A large toy that can entertain dogs of all sizes. Has a log for hiding three squeaking chipmunks. Made of plushy material.
Active chewers could easily tear the soft material apart.
Extremely durable rope limbs and “skeleton.” Minimal internal stuffing. Includes a handful of squeakers. Great for small and medium breeds. Available in two sizes. Cute.
“Durable” doesn’t mean indestructible. Monitored playtime is safe playtime.
Affordable. For breeds of all sizes. Infused with baking soda to promote dental health. Ridges stimulate gums. Intensely strong rubber chew toy. Improves breath.
Best for hardcore chewers.
We recommend these products based on an intensive research process that's designed to cut through the noise and find the top products in this space. Guided by experts, we spend hours looking into the factors that matter, to bring you these selections.
Dogs are naturally playful animals who love running, chasing, chewing, and tugging. As such, you need to buy a range of dog toys to keep your four-legged friend happy.
Your canine companion would be overwhelmed if he knew there are thousands of dog toys to choose from. The choice might be slightly easier for you, but it can still be tough, especially if you're not sure what types of toys your dog likes best. So, how do you pick the right toy for your dog? This guide will help you!
If you want to buy your pup some tried-and-true toys, check out our five favorites. Read on for our full guide to buying the best dog toys for your furry friend.
A huge variety of options fall under the dog toys umbrella. The first thing to do is decide what type of toy to buy for your dog. Once you've narrowed it down, it will be easier to pick the right product. These are the main types of dog toys.
Stuffed toys: The majority of dogs love stuffed toys or plushies. You'll find them in varying degrees of durability, for gentle chewers right up to aggressive biters. Lots of these toys contain squeakers or other noise-makers.
Chew toys: These are toys designed for dogs to gnaw on. They tend to be much more durable than stuffed toys. They may be made from rubber or plastics such as nylon, and are often designed so they can be chewed on without large chunks breaking off. They satisfy the natural urge to chomp and are great for dogs who often chew items they're not supposed to.
Puzzle toys: Whether their goal is to find treats, plush toys, or any other reward, puzzle toys engage your dog's brain and are great boredom busters for when your pooch is home alone or needs more mental stimulation.
Tug toys: You take one end, your dog takes the other — and you battle it out until there's only one winner. The vast majority of dogs love playing tug of war, so it's a great way to bond and have fun with your four-legged friend.
Some toys are durable enough to withstand the teeth of a 120 pound rottweiler, whereas others fall apart from a light mouthing. If you live with a large dog or an aggressive chewer, you'll need to look for extra-strong dog toys.
No toy is completely indestructible, no matter what it says on the package, but some are much more difficult to destroy. Plush toys are generally the least durable option, but you can find some designed for more determined chewers, with features such as hidden seams, double stitching, and ripstop material.
Pick dog toys of an appropriate size for your four-legged friend. If you buy an extra-large toy for a tiny dog, she won't be able to pick it up, and if you buy a small toy for a large dog, it could be a choking hazard. That said, some small dogs enjoy playing with oversized stuffed toys.
Your dog's well-being should be of utmost importance, so be sure to choose dog toys that are safe for him to use. First off, only buy toys from a reputable manufacturer. Some cheap dog toys can be made from unsafe, toxic materials. It's not worth risking your dog's health over a few bucks.
As touched on above, your chosen toy should be durable enough and the right size for your dog. If the toy is too small or if your dog can bite off a chunk or some string-like component, he could choke or swallow it and end up with an intestinal obstruction.
Sounds and textures
The sound of your canine companion squeaking her toy for 20 minutes straight might make you want to shove it down the garbage disposal, but it makes her happy. Dogs are drawn to toys that contain squeakers or other noiser-makers, and often engage with these toys for longer than they do with toys that don't make noise.
For strong chewers, look out for toys that contain puncture-proof squeakers that keep on making noise even if your dog puts a tooth through them. You'll also find dogs enjoy chewing on items of differing textures, whether that’s crinkle paper, textured rope, or ridged rubber.
The price of toy toys can vary by a large amount depending on the durability, size, and the type of toy.
Compact balls, chew toys, and plush toys start at less than $5, but won't be suited to large dogs or heavy chewers.
Mid-range dog toys cost around $5 to $10, including some smaller durable options.
If you want heavy duty dog toys, small production/handmade toys, or more complex puzzle toys, expect to pay between $10 to $20, or even more. Your pal is worth it, right?
Think about the needs and interests of your dog when selecting a toy. There's no point buying a flimsy toy for an aggressive chewer or a ball for a dog who isn't interested in fetching.
Consider treat toys for times when your dog is alone. Toys you can fill with treats that your dog must work to get out are ideal for occupying your four-legged friend when you're not home, or if she needs the extra calories beyond her food.
Don't leave all your dog's toys out at once. If your dog has access to all his toys all the time, they might become part of the furniture and he won't enjoy playtime so much.
Q. Why do dogs need toys?
A. There are a range of reasons why all dogs need toys. Dogs enjoy playing with them — but they can also act as a reward, help relieve boredom, and provide mental and physical stimulation, which helps maintain their youthful spirit and keep them sharp. Many toys encourage dogs to use natural canine behaviors, such as chasing, scenting, chewing, and retrieving.
Q. Should I buy toys that my dog can play with alone or ones that require human interaction?
A. While your dog should have some toys he can play with by himself, such as puzzle toys and chew toys, it's also great to have toys you and your dog can play with together, such as balls and tug toys. These are fun for both parties and help you bond with your four-legged friend.
Q. Can my dog play with her toys unsupervised?
A. The majority of dog toy manufacturers are overly cautious and suggest almost all dog toys should only be used when supervised. Use your judgement or vet’s recommendations. Plush toys are generally best used under supervision, for instance, unless you're 100 percent sure your dog won't rip them apart and swallow the insides. Durable chew toys, such as KONGS, are generally safe for unsupervised use.