Dog owners know how much dogs love to play, but we also know how difficult it is to find a toy that will last through rough play, heavy chewing and endless games of tug-of-war.
Wamiz has put together a short guide to the very best dog toys, those that can endure heavy play, games of fetch, and are designed to withstand maximum chewing strength. If you are struggling to find a rope toy, Kong or plush toy that will go the distance we may just be able to help.
To buy a toy that has little resistance to the bite strength of a dog is a waste of money. A toy that withstands the play of even the mightiest dog will not only save you money but will also keep your dog entertained for much longer.
What kinds of dog toys are best for a large dog?
What is a “large” dog as opposed to a “giant” dog? And how does that change the way we look for the best dog toy? In truth, it doesn’t, because our search for a resilient dog toy should be determined by our dog’s bite force.
A dog of a giant breed is generally considered to weigh more than 110 lbs (50kg). Some examples of giant breeds follow:
But not all of these dogs come in the top ten of pressure exerted by its bite. With the exception of the Dogue de Bordeaux (which has the 4th highest bite pressure) and Great Dane (18th) none of these other giant dogs feature in the top 20 biters.
Those differences aside, as an owner of any breed of dog you will want a toy to be tough enough to withstand your dog’s attentions. Since, if he destroys his toy in record time, he is certain to view furnishings as his next chewing opportunities.
What kinds of dog toy are there?
There are various toys on the market but we will look at just two types: distraction toys and latex and rubber toys. These types of toy are the ones most commonly bought from shops (and rebought due to wear and tear).
Distraction toys: For mental stimulation as well as exercise (e.g. Kongs stuffed with dog food, peanut butter or treats, chew toys, puzzle toys).
Latex and rubber: For entertainment (e.g.squeaky toys, chewy bones and dental bones).
What are the qualities of these types of toys that make them the “best” for a large or giant dog? Of course they must be strong and resilient, but they must also be fun to play with. Most toys that are designed to last a while should also be washable.
What is the best dog toy for a heavy chewer?
For the chewer a toy should be resilient, chewable and washable. Dogs that chew continuously (Labradors, Basset Hound, Border Collie) will see it as their given task to destroy something given to them. Retriever dogs are especially prone to putting things in their mouths.
“Chewing, for a dog, is like a human opening a door and looking into a room," said Colin Tennant, the chairman of the U.K. Canine and Feline Behaviour Association.
“People are nosy, and so are the dogs. But they investigate with their mouths, because they don't have hands."
To invest in a high-quality toy that is durable and will entertain your dog for a long period of time is thus desirable. Ultimately, the best dog toy will be something that is virtually indestructible.
But be warned, marketers of dog toys may tell you a toy will last in order to sell the product.
Read on to learn of our recommendations for the best, toughest dog toys suitable for heavy chewers.
KONG Extreme dog toy
A tough KONG is top of our list. KONG toys have been around for years and still represent the most durable plaything on the market. Natural rubber is used to form the unique KONG shape.
The toy offers not only a chewable challenge but also entertainment: the erratic bounce of the toy is excellent for ‘fetch’ time. The toy can also be stuffed with treats or dog food.
KONG also makes chewy natural rubber bones.
Zogoflex Hurley dog toy
The Zogoflex is made from durable BPA-free rubber. It is designed to be exceptionally durable and can be gnawed for hours without being damaged. The toy was designed with aggressive chewers in mind. It is also washable and can be cleaned in a dishwasher.
Titan Busy Bounce dog toy
Here is an unbreakable toy that yields to no dog, regardless of its bite strength! The Titan is made from FDA-approved rubber; its shape allows it to be used as a stimulating plaything while outdoors. It can also be stuffed with treats or dog food. The Busy Bounce is washable.
Petstages Dogwood Chew dog toy
A dog owner will know how tempting their dog finds sticks and branches. However, to allow your dog to chew natural wood is dangerous since splinters of the wood may lodge in the dog’s gut.
This dog toy is shaped like a piece of wood but is made from artificial durable material. It smells like wood but is far safer than real wood.
NOTE: this product is NOT indestructible.
Nylabone Dental Dinosaur Chew dog toy
Nylabone has been making chew toys for a long time. Its products are renowned for their strength and durability. This chew toy is designed for powerful chewers. It comes in a variety of flavours and sizes and its surface is covered in a texture that allows your dog to grip it easily.
Sometimes, rather than it being an instinctive act, chewing can be a sign of boredom. Live Science writes that problems such as separation anxiety lead dogs to chew more because they are psychologically distressed.
To make matters worse scientists believe that an animal’s long-term boredom can cause its brain to shrink. Two years ago The Telegraph wrote about a study of the effects of boredom on the brains of dogs and other animals.
If you think your dog is low on stimulation you may use toys to help but in extreme cases you must reassess your living arrangements in order to make allowances for your dog.