Imagine having to play with the same set of toys every hour of every day, no matter where you are. Boring, right? Let's face it - when there are so many dog toys out there, it becomes hard to decide which one your four-legged fur buddy would like best. Moreover, knowing when to use one of them is as essential as picking the right dog toy. When dogs play with the right toys on a rotational basis, it keeps them from getting bored and channelling their focus onto something else as a result.

Picking the Right Dog Toys

There is no single 'best dog toy', just like how you don't have a single 'favourite song' - even if you do, it gets boring if you have to play it every hour of every day for the rest of your life. Picking the right toys has much to do with your dog's personality and, sometimes, his or her breed. Since each dog has a different personality, the first step in determining the right toys is finding out whether your dog's interests.

Balls for Dogs - PetSutra

Balls: Dogs who play with balls have a high prey drive, i.e. they enjoy chasing and catching something. Breeds like terriers, retrievers, setters, and pointers usually enjoy balls. If your dog enjoys playing with balls, remember to buy ones of good quality. Over time, low-quality balls tend to tear and are harmful when accidentally ingested. For puppies, choose balls that are chew-resistant; for adults, choose balls that are of different sizes and textures; and for senior dogs, choose plush balls that are soft on the mouth.

Rope Toys for Dogs - PetSutra

Ropes: Thinking of tug-of-war? Rope toys are best for dogs who like to play rough because it gives them something to chew on instead of using their energy on things that are best left alone. Rope toys come in all shapes and sizes, and they are great fun and a must-have for those who have dogs with boundless energy.

Interactive Toys for Dogs - PetSutra

Interactive Toys: One of the best ways to keep your dog occupied while you're at work is through an interactive toy. Interactive dog toys are by far one of the best ways to alleviate boredom and stress in dogs. They encourage a dog to use its mind and work for the food - as they would do in the wild. When a dog's mind is occupied, it is less likely to be all over the place, or worse, headed for destruction. Ensure you have a set of interactive toys, and use them on a rotational basis so as to not bore your dog of it.

Plush toys for Dogs - PetSutra

Plush toys: We all enjoy a cuddle buddy or two! Plush toys are meant for dogs of all ages - right from puppyhood to old age. They're lightweight and easy to carry, which is what makes them so enjoyable! Besides, some of them even squeak, and what better than to have a toy that talks back every time you squeeze it?

Discs Toys for Dogs - PetSutra

Discs: Have a dog who flies like the wind? Discs might be his second-best friend. Discs are enjoyed by dogs who like to run, run, and run. They are great for endurance, stamina, and speed. Dogs who take part in Flyball and Agility start off with disc training. Discs help release pent-up energy - both in the mind and body - it is like going for a long run or swim.

When to Use Which Toy

Now that you have a fair idea of picking the right dog toys, it is time to learn about when to use them. If you leave the same toys lying around, it is natural for your dog to get bored of it; hence, using it at the right time and the right place makes the toy of higher value in your dog's eyes and brings you much-needed satisfaction that the toys you've chosen are being played with!

How to use dogs toys - PetSutra

Balls: Small balls, i.e. smaller than a tennis ball, can be played with at home. Because of their size, they do great for indoor playtime. Contrarily, anything larger than a tennis ball should be played with outside. Balls that have LEDs or bells must be played with under supervision, no matter their size.

Ropes: Ropes are great outdoor toys. They can be played with almost anywhere outside - beach, park, hike, garden, street etc. Playing with ropes indoors may not as fun - except tug-of-war. Ropes need to be thrown, shaken up as 'prey', and brought back - all of which are less possible indoors and way more fun outside.

Interactive toys: When your dog is bored in the house, interactive toys are just the solution. Playing with interactive toys outside is probably not a good idea because your dog has so much to explore in the great outdoors. There's so much to sniff, so much to watch, and so much to pee on that an interactive toy may seem insignificant and uninviting at that time. A minimum of two hours of indoor interactive toy playtime should help give your dog the mental exercise he needs. Remember, however, like with all other toys, interactive toys need to be used on a rotational basis and when it gets too easy, challenge your dog to a tougher version of the game - you will end up surprised as to how smart they really are!

Plush toys: Since plush toys are of soft fabric, they tend to get dirty if played with outside. Besides, your dog would prefer a plush toy as a snuggle buddy. Nevertheless, if you'd still like to take a plush toy out, use one that doesn't have fur on it and can be cleaned easily.

Discs: There are no two ways about this - a disc and a park are two sides of the same coin. Imagine your dog jumping to catch a disc or frisbee in the middle of an apartment or house? Now that you know when to play with the right toy for your dog, here's to a lifetime of fun and good health.