Many of us enjoy doing puzzles, and in the same way, dogs enjoy doing puzzles as well. Dog experts have highly recommended dog puzzle toys, because they are beneficial in many ways.
These toys are made such that they help reduce your dog’s boredom and keep him occupied while you are away.
Also, a pooch’s natural inquisitiveness is enhanced by puzzle dog toys. These toys definitely provide the necessary mental stimulation. However, it should not be seen as an alternative to outdoor physical activity.
Interactive toys for dogs are ideal for times when you cannot be available for your dog. These toys let the dog interact in such a way that no human involvement is necessary.
Top Five Dog Puzzle Toys
Outward Hound Puzzle Toy LC-dolida Smart Dog Puzzle Toy Tarvos Interactive Dog Puzzle Toy SNiFFiz Smelly Matty Snuffle Mat ToyTrixie Flip Board
Why Are Dog Puzzle Toys Important?
Puzzle toys for dogs have far more benefits than drawbacks. These toys are a must-have if you own a dog. Let’s go through some cool advantages of these dog toys:
- Fighting Loneliness and disinterest: Dogs need to be mentally occupied and active, just like humans need to be. Especially during times of elongated loneliness, it is important that they remain occupied in some form of activity.
- Avoiding harmful behavior: When a dog’s energy is focused on a toy, there are fewer chances that he will be involved in destructive behavior such as nuisance barking and chewing precious items.
- Making your dog happy: A hormone causing happiness called dopamine gets released when the dog sniffs for food. The toys that involve scents are best to make your dog relaxed.
- Helping overcome mild separation anxiety: When your dog is undergoing separation anxiety, he paces, howls uncontrollably, and whines. Presenting your dog a puzzle at this juncture can divert his attention to something productive.
- Feeding a meal: A few experts suggest that dog interactive toys can be used not only to provide treats, but also to provide meals. Have a meal-similar quantity of kibble in the toy and watch your dog attempting to earn the dinner.
- Prevent vomiting inhaled food: In his utter excitement for dinner, your dog may get overexcited and puke the dinner that he has just ingested.
Presenting him with a puzzle at this time will prevent fast feeding and your dog will start taking small bites. This gives your dog an opportunity to disintegrate food slowly until the last bite.
List of Best Puzzle Toys for Dogs
We have gathered for your Fido an excellent collection of interactive dog toys. These toys can either be utilized by your pooch under your watch, or your pooch can enjoy them while you are away. Browse our list below:
1. Outward Hound Ottosson Puzzle Brick Dog Toy
It is one of the most sought after dog toys. Being one of the most flexible dog games, it comes with new difficulties every time for your dog.
To find the treats kept inside the toy, the dog has to flip each compartment by opening it. To disclose more treats, more compartments need to be opened.
It is an excellent way to keep your dog occupied when you are not available for him.
The level 2 dog games such as this toy offer great mental challenge and stimulation. The toy can be cleaned easily by washing, rinsing, and drying. The toy is made up of plastic material.
This dog puzzle toy comes with 20 different treat compartments and has a sturdy base that does not slip.
2. LC-dolida Smart Dog Puzzle Toy for Beginners
This toy is specialized for medium-sized dogs who don’t have huge mouths. This multicolored dog toy is good on your dog’s eyes and is attractive. It can nicely capture your pooch’s attention.
To enhance your hound’s thinking and decision-making ability, use this toy. Sliding the compartments to reveal a treat will motivate his cognitive skills and enhance his IQ.
A great tool for lessening your dog’s boredom, the mental refreshment it gives lowers the stress levels and lethargy in the dog.
The dog puzzle toy is also easy to clean – can be washed by hand with soap, rinsed, and then dried. A great quality of this toy is that it is durable, non-toxic, and eco-friendly.
3. Tarvos Interactive Dog Puzzle Toy
This toy is built smartly and it provides your dog with enough mental challenge for having a few treats. Engaging in this game prevents destructive behavior in dogs.
Initially, the food is kept inside the round-shaped feeder present on the top. Next, he must rotate the feeder such that food comes out of its holes.
In the next step, your dog must go on to search for food on the maze placed at the bottom. As this is a multistep puzzle, it requires patience from your dog.
Toys such as these that encourage slower feeding are very good for a dog’s health as they prevent bloating and other related diseases.
4. SNiFFiz SmellyMatty Snuffle Mat
Sniffing is a great pastime for dogs as it reduces boredom and gets rid of the lack of companionship. The SNiFFiz toy takes advantage of this and is made in a smart way.
It provides the longest feeding time and your dog will be lost for hours in search of valuable food. This will keep his separation anxiety at bay.
The mat also comes with five different challenging treat mazes. The difficulty level can be adjusted to a degree of 5, which will suit dogs of various ages and breeds.
A kind of hide and seek game for your dog, your dog can enjoy searching treats in this vibrantly colored mat that is certain to keep him occupied for long.
5. Trixie Flip Board
Filled with exciting mental challenges, the Trixie toy will give your dog an enjoyable time.
Transfer their enthusiasm and inquisitiveness into the Trixie Flip Board. This toy is a medium level toy puzzle that treats your dog for rightly opening different compartments.
You can place treats in all compartments or in some to trick your dog. By lifting the cones and flaps, the treats will be revealed to your dog’s delight.
The cones must be taken by lifting and cannot be knocked from the sides. This is the distinctiveness of the toy’s design.
Trixie Flip Board for dog activity is a game involving the use of strategy consisting of difficulty level 2. The puzzle game is most suited for small-sized dogs.
6. Outward Hound Fun Feeder Dog Bowl
This toy is on our list of one of the best interactive toys for dogs because it ensures healthy eating with fun. It assists your dog in eating ten times slower than usual.
Not only this, the Outward Hound Bowl Feeder facilitates better digestion. Dogs search for food by interacting with interesting patterns and mazes.
This feeder bowl is designed such that minimum sliding occurs. The design effectively avoids slipping and knocking over. The material of the bowl is made of high quality and is non-toxic.
The bigger feeder can keep up to 4 cups of kibble, while the smaller cup can keep nearly 2 cups of kibble.
7. KONG Stuff-A-Ball Dog Toy
This beautiful toy acts as a treat dispenser. It bounces like a rubber ball and acts as a cleaning item for your dog’s teeth.
This puncture-resistant dog toy is not toxic in nature. It is made in such a way that the treats fall out as the toy is rolled by the dog.
Insert biscuits from the central location and apply peanut butter in the long fissures so that earning treats becomes a fun-filled challenge and keeps your dog occupied when the owner is not accompanying.
The dental advantages that come with this toy are quite a few. The toy assists in preventing tartar buildup and plaque.
8. KONG – Classic Dog Toy
This classic toy from Kong is a rubber toy. It satisfies the instinctive needs of your dog. Motivating the dog’s healthy play, the toy assists in resolving issues like excessive barking, digging, boredom, teething, and separation anxiety.
A game of fetch and other exciting games can also be played with this toy. The toy is not suited for aggressive chewers.
If filled with kibble and smeared with peanut butter, the toy can be very appealing to dogs.
Easily cleanable, this toy is safe for dishwashing. Trainers and veterinarians recommend this toy.
For a more challenging experience for your dog, freeze the toy having stuffed kibble for four to six hours before providing it to him.
9. StarMark Bob-A-Lot Interactive Dog Toy
StarMark’s Bob-A-Lot interactive dog toy works by balancing itself from the base at the bottom.
You fill the toy with treats or kibble. When the dog shakes the toy, it hobbles and wobbles. At the same time, treats start falling as the toy shakes.
With adjustable outlets for the treats, the level of difficulty can be increased or decreased.
Along with feeding your dog, this tool provides a proper workout. The massive bottom compartment fits up to 3 cups of Food – similar to the quantity of a full meal.
The openings present at the bottom and top allow for the inclusion of most types of food and allow for controlling the difficulty level.
The bottom of the toy looks exciting and the toy doesn’t fall down on rigorous shaking. Your dog will enjoy playing with it.
10. Outward Hound Hide a Squirrel Dog Toy
This toy’s uniqueness lies in not dispensing treats and in hiding stuffed toys. The toy is essentially a tree trunk that consists of hollow sections from where stuffed squirrels can be inserted.
In order for your dog to be successful in finding hidden squirrels, he needs to sniff, hunt, and fetch them.
Interestingly, the cute squirrel toy comes inbuilt with hidden squeakers that can be squeaked by the dog or will automatically squeak.
The firmly fastened top of the tree trunk makes it difficult for your dog to detach the squirrel toys from their home. Observe in delight as your dog strives to make his way to the top of the trunk.
Most suited for bored and destructive dogs, these toys challenge your dog and keep them occupied for hours at a stretch.
When are these Interactive Dog Toys Not Useful?
Puzzle toys for dogs are great as stress busters and separation anxiety relievers. However, they are not suited to each and every facet in the dog’s life.
Ensure to keep in mind the following things while considering puzzle toys for dogs:
- Not an alternative for socialization: Dog’s need sufficient social interaction as a part of its lifestyle because dogs are quite social in nature.
- To keep their mental health in top shape, they need to be frequently socialized. It would only be wise not to let your dog spend time with puzzle toys when the need of the hour is socialization.
- Not an alternative for exercise: Many dogs are very energetic and love to roam around and enjoy workout sessions. This nature must not be undermined by providing excessive exposure to puzzle toys.
- Not for treating severe separation anxiety: Grave separation anxiety cannot be completely treated with interactive toys. The causes giving rise to separation anxiety need to be struck at their base.
- Professional guidance should be sought when the foundation of serious anxiety needs to be targeted.
- Not for curing aggressiveness: Owners sometimes confuse aggression with frustration. A dog who has food aggression or some other anti-social trait cannot be cured with puzzle toys.
Professional help is the most advisable in cases like these.
You have reached the end of Puzzle Toys for Dogs section. Make your dog healthy and happy with these toys.
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Happy Petting to You Guys!