Importance of Good Dog Toy
The best dog toy can vary drastically based on your dog! Different types of dogs have different tastes, so your dog’s favorite toy might not be the same as the next dog’s. Thankfully, we have created an all-inclusive guide to the best dog toys for dogs with different personalities.
A cheap, poorly-made dog toy can actually be quite dangerous for your dog. Chewers in particular (looking at you Labrador Retrievers) can get themselves into trouble by swallowing chunks of bad dog toys. This can cost you some serious cash at the veterinarian, and it can cost your dog their health.
The best dog toys are well-built and durable, and tailor specifically to your dog. Dogs are not one-size-fits-all, and neither are their toys. A dog who is satisfied and engaged with their toys is a happier pet.
Five Best Dog Toys
As a certified dog trainer, I have used a wide variety of different toys with my dogs and my client’s pets. I’ve compiled all my experience with various toys, as well as my client’s feedback over time, to provide you with an all-inclusive list of the best dog toys available.
Each of these toys has a certain scenario or feature that makes it shine: durability, all-around use, value, etc. It is difficult to provide an all-encompassing choice of which dog toy is best, but we have ranked them in terms of quality, price, versatility, and more.
Here is our unbiased review of the top 5 best dog toys available!
All-Around Favorite Dog Toy
“… My four-year-old puppy is very happy with everything that’s in the box I find it amazing that he enjoys the treats every time …”
“… I am very happy with my BarkBox Subscription and so is my [dog]… toys are very durable – she has not been able to destroy them. We are already looking forward to next month’s box! …”
“… My dogs are always excited when the bark box comes. Its a great way to keep them occupied and from being bored …”
If you’re looking for a couple of variable toys, and you’d like to throw in some tasty dog treats, BarkBox is a pretty great place to start. You simply subscribe and your dog receives a monthly box with toys and dog treats to enjoy.
- Monthly subscription lets you subscribe and let BarkBox do the work!
- Each box contains two toys, two treats, and a dental chew.
- Each month they vary the toys and theme to keep your dog interested.
When I’m working with dog training clients, they grow very tired of the word variety, because I repeat it until it sticks! Dogs don’t just love variety, they need variety to thrive.
With this monthly subscription, your dog gets variety and you don’t have to lift a finger. It’s a great choice for pet owners looking to increase their pup’s collection of toys and treats. Recommended for: Labrador Retrievers, Golden Retrievers, Pitbulls, German Shepherds, Maltese, and more.
Best Toy for Fetch
“… This is the best dog toy available on modern planet Earth …”
“… I’m obsessed with this. I never have to touch the slimy ball. The ball flings all the way across the yard, every time …”
“… I can throw the ball a lot farther and for more throws, so he gets more exercise. Love that I no longer need to bend over to pick up the ball or have to touch a slimy, sandy, filthy ball! You can also use regular tennis balls with it. …”
Some dogs are simply born to play fetch, literally. People selectively bred breeds like Labrador Retrievers and Golden Retrievers to retrieve objects. Because of this, they inherently love playing fetch, and this toy suits them perfectly.
- Comes in several different sizes and varieties.
- Hands-free ball pickup to avoid slobber.
- Allows you to throw farther and for longer periods.
Few things are more repulsive than picking up a slobber-covered ball. With this toy, you can easily toss the ball with your dog without ever touching it. The Chuckit also lets you easily throw the ball farther without throwing out your back!
If your dog loves to play fetch, this toy is quite literally a necessity. Never again must you stoop to the ground and collect a slime-covered ball to toss it across the yard. This one is a life-changer. Recommended for: Golden Retrievers, Pitbulls, Labrador Retrievers, German Shepherds, Golden Doodles, and more.
Best Toy for Playing Tug
“… This rope is played with 3 different dogs, it receives a lot of abuse but has held up wonderful in the past 3 months …”
“… [My dog] really destroyed his last rope toy. We were delighted to see that he absolutely loved it from the very first instant, and wore himself out trying his best to rip it up …”
“… Great chew rope, my dog loves it. He carries it around with him and loves to chew it…”
You don’t get better value than this. A good tug rope is essential for any pet owner with a playful dog. This product provides you with an extra-long rope for more fun!
- 36″ long fun for even smaller dogs.
- Works to floss your dog’s teeth.
- Made with cotton blend.
With any rope toy, you want to always supervise during play. Though this toy is durable, your dog might be able to chew it apart, and we wouldn’t want your pup to swallow anything they’re not supposed to!
My favorite way to play tug with my dogs is to break out the tug rope from the cabinet and watch instant excitement ensue. For a bonus, I toss the rope across the room to add a little fetch to the equation as well. Recommended for: Pitbulls, Labrador Retrievers, German Shepherds, Shetland Sheepdogs, and more.
Best Toy for Hyperactive Dogs
“… The best part about this is it makes [my dog] feel like he worked for his dog food and so he seems to enjoy it more! …”
“… It teaches [my dog] problem solving and keeps him occupied when you need a break from the consistent need for playing and activity. We love this interactive dog toy, but more importantly our pup loves this toy! …”
“… My dog stopped playing with all of his other toys because he is too entertained by this one… he will be entertained for hours… well built, easy to clean, entertaining …”
When people call their dogs “hyperactive” it usually just means that their dog has lots of energy and isn’t getting enough stimulation. Entertaining an active dog isn’t all about physical activity, and this treat dispensing ball works to occupy your dog’s brain.
- Hard plastic is easier to clean and difficult to destroy.
- Keeps your dog mentally and physically active.
- Slows your dog’s eating to aid in digestion.
Treat dispensing balls are some of my all-time favorite toys as a dog trainer. They are indispensable in keeping an intelligent and active dog happy, healthy, and out of your hair!
Let’s face it, we all love our dogs, but it is hard to keep them occupied. Dogs need hours of mental stimulation per day, and if you cannot provide that, you can supplement it with toys like this to keep your dog satisfied. Recommended for: Golden Retrievers, Pitbulls, Shetland Sheepdogs, Border Collies, and more.
Best Mentally Stimulating Toy
“… Keeping puppies busy is the name of the game. It seems durable… Great item!! …”
“… My puppy is obsessed with this snuggle mat! I hide treats all over for her and she digs around for them. She’s still learning so she can’t find many of them… it is perfect for my puppy! …”
“… Our Chihuahuas love this puzzle. Easy to use… they are frequently checking to see what the puzzle fairy has left them …”
Our dogs love foraging behaviors, and snuffling around in a snuffle mat does wonders for their mental health. This unique mat provides various hiding places for you to stash treats or kibble for your dog to find.
- Mentally stimulating activity helps relieve stress.
- Anti-slip bottom keeps your dog from sliding across the floor.
- Handmade and machine washable for easy cleaning.
I would recommend using this toy for small-to-medium dogs and picking it up when your dog is done using it. This will keep your dog from chewing or otherwise destroying the mat. This also adds the benefit of excitement when you pull the mat out for your dog to play with.
When it comes down to it, dogs love using their noses. This mat really satisfies your dog’s urge to sniff out and locate food. During the process, they burn up lots of mental energy! Overall, it is a great way to get your dog a little more mental stimulation. Recommended for: Yorkies, Beagles, Chihuahuas, Spaniels, and more.