Tough Dog Toys for Heavy Chewers
Choosing the right toys for your heavy chewers is a tough task, especially for the younger puppies that are still teething. Sometimes it’s as if they’ll chew everything they aren’t supposed to be chewing! Even when we do give them a toy that was bought for them, they’ll often rip through it in minutes.
The compulsion to chew is one that is hard for our four-legged friends to ignore, particularly for breeds that are descended from working dogs. But, there is something we can do for our chewers and that’s selecting a toy that is tougher than normal and letting them chew to their heart’s content, without a grumpy dog mum or dad hovering nearby!
To help those of you who are frustrated at never finding quite the right toys, we’ve highlighted some of the best tough dog toys and dental chews for younger pups, and will even throw in some tug toy suggestions for doggy playtime. But first, some advice on what to avoid.
Toys to Avoid to Protect our Dogs
One thing to remember when looking for new toys for your dogs is that giving them cheap and disposable toys that can be easily ripped apart introduces the risk of ingesting broken pieces, and potentially an expensive trip to the vets!
Unfortunately, despite how fun a toy looks, there are some that are just not made for the most enthusiastic chewers and will get destroyed in moments. These toys can sometimes contain small pieces that are able to get stuck in your dog’s throat or digestive tract.
And no matter how tough a toy is, they will all meet their end due to a rough life in your dog’s playbox. So keep in mind the toxicity of a chew or toy’s construction material. Some materials are not that safe for chewing on. Most tough dog toys are going to be made with this in mind, but it’s worth thinking about.
Avoiding soft teddy bears, and anything with stuffing, is a good idea for those dogs who are constant chewers. They will either ingest the stuffing, which isn’t good for them, or they’ll throw it around the living room. The time it takes to clean up the floor’s worth of bear stuffing isn’t worth the picture for your social media, no matter how cute they look with the intact toy!
Our Favourite Tough Toys for Chewing Dogs
When we’re looking for toys for dogs that chew more when they play, there’s still the preference of the dog to take into account. Some dogs are happier playing fetch than others, and some prefer something to really sink their teeth into.
Retrievers, for example, love to have things in their mouth. It’s what they were bred to do after all! So usually, something like the KONG Cross Knots elephant is a great choice.
This range of KONG toys is designed with minimal stuffing and a strong internal rope designed to keep the toy alive for longer. They’re still “teddy bear” like, so for dogs that enjoy playing with stuffed animals, this will be a winner.
We know from experience that some dogs prefer the compact nature of a ball, especially bouncy balls they can chase for a while first!
Tennis balls don’t last long in certain households, so why not try a tougher version of the classic toy?
There are different types of hard plastic balls for dogs, and each has a slightly different design that either encourages the dog to enjoy their chewing session, or makes it harder to split open in the first place.
The example from KONG we’ve pulled out here is also great for cleaning teeth and gums with its ridged lettering and bumps. A lot of these balls will fit ball launchers as well.
Tugging on Tougher Toys
Another way to keep your dog safe whilst they chew is to always supervise them, either through being in the same room where they’re munching away, or by selecting a tough tug toy where you can play with them and give them that coveted chewing time!
Our dogs love it when we play with them, and it’s important for their health to stimulate their mind as well as give them a task to do to stave off boredom. Boredom is a quick route to the destruction of your personal property, so a tug toy is perfect for getting your four-legged friend’s mind off stimulating themselves.
Rope toys are a great way to keep our adult dogs happy. They can latch on and get the chewing sensation, but they also get the added fun of playing with mum and dad. It’s best not to play tug of war with your young puppies, though, no matter how tempting it may be to play with them that way.
When a young puppy is teething, they’re likely to want something to chew on. It’s only natural! But if we tug on their toys with them, we might accidentally find that their teeth are pulled out a little sooner than intended, leading to pain.
For those youngsters that love to chew, let’s talk about dental chews instead.
Dental Chew Toys for Determined Puppies
It’s not just our adult dogs that love to chew. Practically every puppy will go through a stage where anything and everything that can be chewed will be. It’s partly an exploration of the world around them and partly a way to itch those sore gums!
For those of you who are sick to death of pulling your slippers out of the puppy’s mouth, try a toy that’s designed to be interesting to chew on, like this KONG Teething Stick.
KONG is a well known dog toy brand, and these are made with teeth and gum health in mind. Anything that is designed for puppies whilst teething is generally made of softer material, which is why they’re especially suitable for teething puppies of a young age! Anything too hard will be too tough on your young dogs’ gums.
Remember that with all toys there’s an expiration date
Any toy that’s labelled as tough, indestructible, or long-lasting may not always be the case with your particular best friend. Every dog is different, and you know better than we do what their level of chewing is like. If you think that a toy will be no match for your determined chewer, then be careful giving it to your pet.
When manufacturers make these dog toys, they’re not able to take everyone into account. Tough or “indestructible” toys may not be so indestructible after all, but they’ll likely last longer as they’ll be made of sterner stuff.At the end of the day, finding the right toys for your dog can be a long exercise in testing and watching to see how your dog reacts. We hope that we’ve given you some great ideas to try out here, but make sure to check out all the tug toys, dental chews, and tougher toys that are available online at Your Dog’s Club.