Puzzles, balls, and squeaky toys – the interactive dog toys in 2023 have become even more diverse and entertaining. These toys stimulate your canine fellow’s brain while allowing him to exercise the muscles and play.
The mental stimulation provided also helps keep the anxiety, stress, and boredom away. Using these toys, you can also help your dog overcome emotional and behavioral challenges.
Well, if you’re looking for interactive dog toys, then you’ve reached the perfect place. At Dog Gear, we have solutions for all your pet parenting problems.
In today’s post, our team of experts has researched and brought together the top-5 interactive toys for dogs. You will also find an insightful guide and FAQ section to ease the buying process. Read more!
If your dog isn’t those aggressive breeds who would practically chew on anything they can find, then this Nina Ottoson by Outward Hound is an excellent choice. It is an interactive puzzle toy that features 12-removable treat compartments placed in a non-slip base. You can hide treats in some of the boxes and let your dog hunt them.
Your dog will either flip, lift, or slide the puzzle compartments that make the game challenging. Also, the puzzle doesn’t contain any BPA, PVC, or phthalate materials. So, it is safe for the pet. The well-thought build makes it easy to clean using warm water and soap.
The ZippyPaws Burrow Squeaky Toy is an interactive plush toy that features one big log and three cute squirrels. Its soft and fluffy design makes this toy perfect for all dog breeds. But, make sure the dog doesn’t munch on it.
It is not a chew toy and features speakers that pose a dangerous hazard. These small, metallic structures inside produce silly noises when shaken. The log also has holes for your dog to play hide-and-seek. Hence, your pet will remain entertained for hours. You can also wash the toy once it gets dirty.
Innovative & entertaining – the Dogs Toys Soccer Ball is unbeatable for the price. The usage of high-quality rubber in its construction makes it elastic, soft, and completely safe for your pup. Its non-toxic, durable design means your furry pal can munch on it without causing much damage to the ball.
The soccer ball has a hexagonal structure and has nylon tabs sewn into it. So, dogs can easily hold and bring it to you in a game of fetch. Since it is lightweight and floatable, you can also use it as a water toy.
For quick-eaters, this Dog Puzzle Toy will make mealtimes entertaining. The circular puzzle toy features 14-holes that you can fill with dog treats and cover with the slidable lids. Your dog will have to sniff and move the caps around to find the food. Hence, the puzzle toy slows down the eating process and challenges the mind too.
Unlike an average feeder, this interactive slow feeder puzzle toy increases the feeding time to 20 to 30-minutes. Slowed eating reduces the amount of air swallowed and improves digestion. The toy comprises non-toxic PVC materials that make it both safe and eco-friendly.
The Nylabone Interactive Dog Toy features various exciting patterns and textured fabrics. It is a great sensory toy that will help your dog explore new materials.
It has tug straps to play interactive bonding games with your furry pal too. Using this toy, you can play fetch, hide-and-seek, tug-of-war, and several other dog games. However, please note that this is not a chew toy. Although the double-stitched sturdy build withstands mild chewing during play, it might come apart when used for aggressive chewing. You can also wash the toy to keep it germ-free and safe.
With a vibrant design
Easy to clean
It is durable
It is versatile
Not a chew toy
Interactive Dog Toy Buying Guide
Why Are Interactive Toys Good for Dogs?
Yes, many dogs may laze around and spend time dozing off today. But, such behavior is a result of domestication and is not instinctual. These canine beings still need stimulation to exercise their muscles, senses, and problem-solving skills. And, an interactive dog toy is just the right thing for that.
Here are some reasons why interactive toys are good:
Interactive toys, like puzzles, encourage your dog to think and find solutions. It strengthens their mind and makes them sharp.
These toys are a great source of entertainment too. Your dogs can keep themselves busy for hours playing with these responsive toys.
Since entertainment keeps the boredom away, your dog won’t feel alone or anxious. These emotional imbalances also trigger behavioral concerns, such as aggressiveness. Providing your dog with interactive toys can help keep him relaxed and happier.
Types of Interactive Dog Toys
From balls to plushies – there is a variety of interactive dog toys available in the market. However, there are only three fundamental types. These include:
The sensory toys stimulate the five senses; taste, sight, hear, smell, and touch. These toys usually produce sounds and lights to interact.
Puzzles & Slow feeders
Puzzle dog toys hide treats under flaps and places such that the dog has to work out a way to reach them. So, they serve as both challenges and slow feeders. These toys primarily encourage problem-solving skills.
One of the high-end options available is the ball launcher for dogs. It is a mechanical gadget that throws balls for your pup to chase.
Things to Consider in the Best Interactive Dog Toy
Every dog has a different personality. You must pick a toy that aligns with your pet’s interests and entertains him. So, choosing the perfect interactive dog toy may require a little trial and error.
But, worry not. We have compiled all the essential things to consider while buying the idealistic one. Learn more!!
First, go through the types of interactive dog toys. Does your dog enjoy balls, challenges, or sensory-related things?
Mostly, dogs prefer puzzles and slow feeders since it rewards them with treats. These treats get even the most sedentary dogs to engage in hours of play.
It is quite important to analyze the build of the toys and ensure durability. They should be capable of withstanding light to moderate thrashing. Otherwise, not only will your money get wasted, but small, broken parts of the toys may pose a choking hazard.
Apart from durability, also evaluate whether the materials used in the build are safe and non-toxic. Often, dogs chew on the toys and are at risk of poisoning.
The size of the dog toy influences the ergonomics. Check the size chart of the selected toy and choose one according to your dog’s structure—large toys for large dogs, and vice versa.
Picking up the wrong sizes can make it impossible for your dog to handle the toy. It may be too big or small for his mouth and paws. Eventually, the dog will lose interest rendering an interactive dog toy useless.
Dog toys get constantly exposed to unseen harmful bacteria and germs. Your dog rolls it on the ground, takes it in the mouth, and whatnot. Leaving it as it is can trigger health issues in your pup.
Hence, make sure that the interactive dog toy is easy-to-clean and maintain. Opt for washable toys to make playtime germ-free for your pet.
How Do I Teach My Dog to Use Interactive Toys?
It doesn’t matter whether your furry pal is still too young or shy. Teaching how to use interactive toys is a fairly simple process for any dog.
First, unpack the toy and leave it near your dog for some time. Since it’s a new gadget, it’s best to let him explore the thing and become familiar.
Once comfortable, sit nearby and demonstrate the usage. Then, let him do the same. To encourage, scatter a few treats around the interactive toy.
People Also Asked
Q: What are the most entertaining dog toys?
A: There is a diversity of dog toys available today. And, it being entertaining depends on the nature of your dog.
Calm and collected dogs find the simplest balls quite exciting, whereas adventure-driven dogs love challenging puzzles. Overall, it's best to invest in interactive toys for dogs if you're unsure about your pup.
Q: Do interactive dog toys work?
A: Yes, interactive dogs work. Their responsive mechanism keeps the dog entertained for hours. Plus, they stimulate your pup mentally, encouraging him to play.
Q: How do I make an interactive dog toy?
A: You can make an interactive dog toy from a thousand different things. For example, take an old muffin tray, fill the cups with treats, and cover it with tennis balls. Your dog will have to work his way to find the rewards, i.e., treats.
However, for large breeds, the balls can pose choking hazards. So, be vigilant when making dog toys on your own. It is better to purchase professionally-manufactured dog toys.
Amber grew up having golden retrievers and will always have a special place in her heart for the breed. Her love for all things "dog" helped her become a general manager at a small kennel in Ohio for several years. Acquainting dogs and understanding both their needs and limitations have given her deep insights into the boarding process many dogs face in their lives. From consistent details to play time to food and bed time, Amber will always remember the small influences she was able to present to every pooch she cared for.