We would love to spend all day entertaining our dogs, but that isn’t always the reality. Dogs crave stimulation and at times require more energy than we have available.
Luckily, there are toys to keep dogs busy, so they don’t miss out on the mental stimulation they need. Keeping your dog busy can keep them out of trouble. Many toys also have learning properties that can teach your dog patterns and activities.
Bored dogs turn into naughty dogs and when you’re not available to provide their needed entertainment, they’ll keep themselves busy doing something you’ve definitely told them not to do.
Food Based Toys
Kongs are a must in any dog household. Not only can you fill them with yummy treats, you can also add them to your training arsenal.
We tend to fill them with spray cheese or peanut butter and put them in the freezer. This allows our dog to be stimulated by the flavor of the treat as well as the cold. Be careful, these treats can be messy and are often best utilized outside or in a contained area!
It is best to fill them with hart do get out treats so they will have to work for their reward. Make sure to buy the appropriate size and of treat for your dog as well as the right texture for their aggressive, or non-aggressive, chewing habits.
Kong Stuff a Ball:
Dogs love working for rewards. They can learn patterns and queues when treats are involved. Kong’s Stuff A Ball treat dispensing toy is an awesome way to kill time and teach your dog how to get their reward. You can put pre-made treats inside, or you make a homemade treat.
This toy also has grooves on the end where you can spray a yummy treat. It can keep your dog occupied for a long duration of time, especially if you freeze the snack on the outside! It provides stimulation to different smells, tastes and a new learning experience.
Kong Quest Star Pod:
The Kong Quest Star Pod holds many treats and can provide entertainment both in and out of a crate. Your pup will have to figure out how to use their paws and mouth to get their reward out of this toy. Since the spaces are small, they will need to be extra careful and clever.
Pro Tip: Put different types of treats in all of the spaces. Your pup won’t even know where to start.
JW Pet Hol-ee Roller:
This ball is great for dogs who love to play fetch and chase balls around the house. You can put large treats inside, and they will be pushing it around for hours trying to get the treats out. You can throw it around the house just as you would with any other ball for fetch.
Food based toys are great, but not for every dog. Depending on food restrictions or diets, your dog may need certain toys to keep dogs busy that don’t involve food in order to gain their daily mental stimulation.
Dog puzzles are a great learning tool for your furry friends. Depending on the type, they can help dogs learn patterns and receive rewards for their hard work. There are different levels, so you can work your dog up to harder and harder tasks.
Puzzles are a great option for any age or level of dog. The games may need to be supervised at first, but once they get going, they will be able to enjoy their new learning process.