5 Awesome Puppy Toys and 5 You Should Avoid

Find the best and most durable toys for your puppy.

By | Posted: July 16, 2014, 9 a.m. PST

After all, buying toys is so much fun, but it can also burn quite a hole in your pocketbook, especially if you have a dog that plays rough. Working at a doggy daycare, boarding, and training facility, I see a lot of toys and use a lot of toys while training. Below is a list of brands or toy types that make my cut, and those you should leave on the shelf.


Puppy Toys


5 Best Dog Toys for "Ruff” Play

1. Kong. Known for being sturdy, this brand of dog toys had to be at the top of our list. Whether you are buying the original Kong Stuffer toy, or a Wubba, they are sure to last. For the really hard chewers, buy the black rubber Kong, it’s the sturdiest.

2. Planet Dog. I have owned several different sizes and types of their Orbee-Tuff toys and they last and last. Plus, they smell like peppermint.

3. Fleece or Felted Tugs. Whether you buy or make them, fleece and felting is surprisingly rip-resistant and dogs love the way they feel in their mouths.

4. Plastic Bones. As long as you are around to make sure your dog does not bite a piece off, bones like Nylabone® brand last a long time and are worth your money.

5. Kyjen Invincibles. These great squeak and tug toys keep squeaking even if your dog manages to puncture them. They hold up well to all the tugging that goes on with dogs at the daycare where I work.

5 Dog Toys You Should Avoid for Heavy Chewers

Just because a brand or toy claims its "indestructible” does not mean it really is. Some toys just do not live up to their names, or their price points. The following toys are ones that do not hold up well, even if your dog does not play rough.

1. Kyjen Plush Puppies Lil Rippers. While Kyjen makes some great products, this one is a dud. Several of my coworkers bought them and each and every one of them complained that it ripped almost instantly along the seams, even with dogs that are light-mouthed.

2. Multipet Loofah Pets. While these guys are just adorable, they do not last long with any real play. One tug session was all it took to decapitate ours. If you have small puppy that just wants to carry the toy around, these are fine, otherwise, pick something else.

3. Busy Buddy Tug-a-Jug. I have a 10 year-old Sheltie that is by no means a toy dog, but she is a food dog. We tried to use this to encourage toy play. Instead, she ended up breaking the plastic part that unscrews and creating shards and sharp edges. If my 10 year old can do this, just imagine what a strong puppy or dog could do. Bypass this toy, it’s dangerous.

4. Small Parts. Avoid any type of toy that has small parts or pieces that could easily be torn off and swallowed.

5. Minky Fabric. Toys made of minky fabric are so soft, we are immediately drawn to them and so are our dogs. However, this fabric is quite thin and rips easier than any I know. The minky fabric with the lines (like corduroy) can be ripped by a human. Your dog will have this toy ruined in seconds.

More Must-Have Advice for your Dog


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