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The Best Toys for Your Pet (and the Worst)

Our pets are our children, and for that reason, they deserve a toy every once in a while! Whether you have a dog or cat, they’ll certainly appreciate a little surprise every once in a while, especially if it’s a toy that they can play with when they get a little bored.

Toys can be great solitary activities, or simply be a way to engage with your pet. We picked and ultimately chose a few different options depending on your pet’s personality, taking care to choose toys that interact with your animal in different ways. Outside, inside, low energy, high energy; there’s something for every pet.

*As a reminder, we always recommend supervising your pet when they are playing with or chewing on a toy. 

Dogs that Have More Bite than Bark

KONG Extreme Dog Toy

KONG toys have long been known as some of the most durable dog toys on the market. They’re made of a high-quality, extremely hardy rubber that even the most powerful set of jaws will find challenging to destroy. A KONG toy should last you a while or at the very least a long time. Best yet, you can fill the KONG with broken up treats for an extra reward for your pup.

Cats that Love their Treats

Dental Treats & Chews

What better way to clean your cat’s teeth than by keeping them happy and entertained in the process? There are a number of dental treats and chews out there for your cat to try. The chewing action will clean their teeth and the catnip will keep them coming back for more!

Dogs that Love to Play Catch

Chuckit Mini Ball Launcher

Does your arm tire easily? Maybe it aggravates that old football injury or you can’t throw farther than your dog wants to run. In either case, the “Chuckit” is the product you need! Simply place a ball in the cup at the end and fling it into the horizon. Not only will your ball go further (giving your dog a run for its money), but you can scoop the ball up without using your hands; we’ve all spent a day at the park with dried dog slobber on our fingers.

We suggest you forgo the tennis ball and get this. We’ll explain why tennis balls aren’t good for dogs at the bottom.

Cats that Love the Thrill of the Hunt

A Laser Pointer

We all like to think that cats are sophisticated animals (or, at least, that’s what they want us to believe.) However, a quick run with a simple laser pointer will prove otherwise. There is something about a cat and a moving red dot that activates their intense need to chase! Indoor cats get little exercise, so a laser pointer can be the perfect way to get their steps in. Just be sure not to point it at them, especially around their eyes.

Dogs that are Problem Solvers

Outward Hound Dog Treat Puzzle

Do you have a brainy pup? If so, then you might be happy to hear that there are indeed dog puzzles, which can hide away treats as prizes for your clever animal. Puzzles will help teach your dog memory retention and can even reduce anxiety.

Toys to Avoid

Some of the most common dog and cat toys can be unhealthy and potentially unsafe. Let’s go over some of the most popular bad toy culprits.

Tennis Balls for Dogs

Bigger dogs can bite right through a tennis ball and choke on the rubber. Worse yet, the exterior material can be bad for their teeth.

String, Yarn, or Ribbon for Cats

A cat can easily swallow and choke on string, yarn, or ribbon. If they swallow these materials but don’t choke it can still cause terrible digestive problems, which may require surgery.

Rawhide for Dogs

Rawhide is commonly sold as a chew toy for dogs. However, a dog can rip apart rawhide and choke on it.

Plastic Bags

While some cats may find a plastic bag to be interesting, that doesn’t mean it’s a safe toy. Just like a child, a cat can get tangled in a plastic bag and suffocate. It’s best to keep plastic bags away from the floor, or anywhere else your cat can reach.

Cooked Bones for Dogs

A cooked animal bone is too brittle for your dog. As they chew, they’ll break off shards of bone which can be a choking hazard, or worse yet, can cut their throat or stomach.

Time to Have Some Fun

The weather is already much warmer. It’s time to get outside or have some fun. However, if your pet is indoor-only, there’s still plenty of fun to be had! Just ensure the toys you get for your pet are safe and appropriate.