It has been said that a tired dog is a happy one. That may be true. However, it is certainly true that a tired dog has a happy owner. Dog toys and play serve a valuable function for you and your pet-besides wearing him out and keeping him out of trouble, toys can stimulate his mind.
Boredom is often the cause of a lot of bad behavior with dogs, such as chewing furniture, digging holes, or constant barking. Pet Toys, by alleviating the boredom, may help alleviate the problem.
Dog Psychology and Dog Toys
One thing you have to know about pets is that they like to work. They like also like to play. Most of all, they like to be involved. They also need exercise every single day.
Dogs are pack animals and need structure and interactions. For a pet dog, that means you are the pack. You need to do more than just feed and water your dog. You need to care for his mental health. And there’s more to that than locking Fido out in the yard with chew toys.
Somewhere out there are pet toys that are right for you and your pup. Below are a number of options for toys that will improve indoor playtime beyond the simple and rather repetitive games like fetch and tug of war.
Hide and Seek Dog Toys
Hide and seek dog toys, usually featuring a cute yet hunt-able animal in effigy, are a good choice to amuse your dog (and yourself). The concept is simple-the plush toy stuffed squirrel hides in a plush toy tree trunk. You get your pet excited about digging it out of its hiding place.
If your dog has the habit of destroying his toys, this may be a perfect toy for him. He can dig the stuffed toys out of the base repeatedly rather than dig the stuffing out of a traditional stuffed animal. These toys have built in squeakers, making it easy to get your dog worked up about finding the toys.
These are great toys for smaller dogs (under forty pounds), especially terriers. Terriers, named for their digging, will love digging the toys out. These dog toys will also make your dog smarter by encouraging him to figure out how to get the dog toys out of their hiding place.
Hidden Egg Dog Toys
Alternatively, there are pet toys available with squeaky eggs in their stomach. They operate on the same principle; your pet practices gutting his prey, and his prey-your pet toys-live to be gutted another day.
Dog Toys with Treats in Them
Most pets love those old standards, chew toys. Many pups are quite content to gnaw their chew toys to oblivion, but most need more mental stimulation, at least some of the time.
Toys with treats in them give your pet a challenging puzzle to solve, that presses their instinctual buttons and rewards them at the end with a dog treat. An example is a plastic cube with treats inside which the dog must find a way to get out of the cube. The cube is also adjustable, so as your dog figures out how to get the treats out, you can make it harder so he won’t get bored.
Another example of this type of dog toys is a rubber ball that helps clean your pet’s teeth when he plays with it. Your dog bites the slits in the ball. His teeth sink into the grooves. The grooves stimulate the gums and clean the teeth, and dispense treats or kibble for your pet. These chew toys come in various sizes for different sizes of canines, but also come in different degrees of toughness so you can adjust for the destructiveness of your dog’s chewing ability.
Dog Toys Stimulate Your pet’s Mind As Well As His Teeth
These toys all have one trait in common: they can reward your dog as the task is completed. This provides mentally stimulating play for your dog, which can help keep them from being bored, and a contented, tired pet is less likely to destroy everything you own by chewing it.