Buying toys for the family dog is almost as satisfying as discovering a distraction for a baby or young child. Dog toys are good, old-fashioned fun. However, pet owners must educate themselves on which toys to pick or skip. Explore the features of dog toys today and what to avoid at the same time. Pet owners and their pups will have the time of their lives with the right selection.
Think Size First
Pet owners might have a chihuahua and German shepherd roaming around the property. These two breeds couldn’t be more different than if they were entirely separate species. Giving the chihuahua the same toy as the German shepherd wouldn’t work out. Pet owners must always consider dog size before buying a toy.
Every toy should be large enough to be picked up and carried in the dog’s jaws. A dog training professional would go further by stating that the toy shouldn’t be so small that it could be swallowed. Take any toy away from the pup of a choking hazard is possible.
Follow the example of a dog daycare expert by paying attention to the toy’s material. It shouldn’t be too delicate for those tough teeth, for instance. Think about buying rubber or rope toys that can stand some roughhousing. Dogs place an amazing amount of pressure on their toys. Pet owners don’t want the toys breaking down prematurely.
Be ready to throw out a toy if it’s damaged. It doesn’t matter if the toy is relatively new either. The pet’s health is the most important consideration. A broken toy can lead to choking or serious, internal damage.
Treat or No Treat?
Many Golden pet owners enjoy watching their dogs play with their coveted toys. A surefire way to tempt any pup into playing with a toy is by hiding a treat within it. Look for specialized toys that hold treats in a hollow section. The pup uses its problem-solving mind to pull the treat from the toy.
Pet owners may want to hold back on treat toys if their dog is overweight. Any treats should be given sparingly at this point. An overweight pup might benefit from dog training where exercise and verbal praise are the rewards. Use those instincts when deciding between a treat-filled or everyday toy.
Hard or Soft?
Take a pup to any dog daycare, and there will be a mixture of different toys. They vary from hard to soft textures. Choosing between these toys is largely subjective. Some dogs prefer one texture over the other.
Think about the pup’s dental health and strength when selecting a toy. The dog may like soft and cuddly toys, but it tears them apart with incredible ease. A toy that’s partially soft and hard may be a clever compromise.
Broaden the dog’s mind by trying a smart toy. The dog might press a button with a reward occurring on the other side of the toy. Other toys offer a puzzle and reward when the pup completes a certain sequence.
If a Golden dog is on its own for most of the day, these interactive toys keep them stimulated. They can also be great toys with an interaction between the dog and owners. A stimulated mind equates to a happy puppy.
Master and Puppy
There’s still no substitute for the standard ball. It’s a perfect toy for both the pet owner and dog. Be sure to pick a ball that’s large enough for the dog’s jaws. It should have a little bit of give to it, such as a tennis ball.
Pick a shady area outdoors to throw the ball. The dog should bring it back to the owner. This simple activity offers coordination and exercise to the pet while creating a bond between master and pup.
Aging the Toy
Every Lakewood dog has a different age and medical condition. Match every toy to the pup’s ability. If it has a dental issue, soft toys should be readily available. Young and healthy dogs can take on thick-rope pulls.
Stimulate older pups with a toy that stays in place. Younger pups, in contrast, will need exercise with a toy that rolls or moves. Continually change the toys so that life is always unexpected in the toy department.
The Rawhide Question
It’s traditional to give a pup a rawhide bone. They can chew on it for hours on end. However, this treat has concerning effects on the dog. There might be bacterial or fungal contaminants within the bone, for example. Swallowing part of the rawhide poses a great risk to the pup’s digestive system.
If a Lakewood family pays careful attention to the pet as it chews on the rawhide, it can be a helpful tool on tooth plaque. Otherwise, it’s a better idea to choose rubber or an alternative material as a chew toy.
Consulting With the Professionals
One of the simplest ways to learn about safe toys is by speaking to a dog training professional. Discuss the breed, temperament and other personality quirks with the expert so that he or she can make a sound judgement. A toy that Golden residents have never heard of may be a perfect choice.
Pets may also try out toys during a short stay at a dog daycare. Watch the pet to see which toy is the favorite during playtime. Most pets pick a favorite in no time.
As a Lakewood family gains more experience with purchasing the right toys, the decisions will get easier. Most dogs will have a certain preference for particular toys. Follow this train of thought while noting any safety concerns. Dog toys should always be a source of fun for everyone in the household.