Dog Toys: Playtime and Safety

It's playtime! To a canine, almost anything they get their paws on can turn into a fun "toy". A situation most dog owner's know all too well. But how do you know what knickknack is safe or dangerous for your pet to engage with? Here are a few guidelines on how to keep your pet's playtime more on the safe side according to the Humane Society of the United States. Dog-Proof Your Home

  • Leaving your socks on the floor or trashcans open invites your canine to indulge in inappropriate playtime. Keep an eye out for these situations and make a habit of keeping non-toys off the floors.
  • Depending on your dog size, some knickknacks may accidentally be swallowed. Also, pay attention to toys that can be ripped apart. Discard toys once they are torn or are broken into pieces.
  • Squeaker toys are fun for pups and give a dog the sense of "find and destroy". However, you should supervise your pet while playing with squeaky toys to help prevent them from ingesting it.
  • Soft toys are popular among our canine friends but, some are more sturdier than others. Instead of simply grabbing any soft toy, try to find those that are machine washable, are safe for children under the age of 3 and don't contain dangerous fillers.
  • Be smart about rawhides for your pets by making sure to check with your vet which ones on the market are safe and appropriate. Also pet owners, be aware that this product is a byproduct of the cruel international fur trade and can be substituted for a more humane choice. Toys made of hard rubber will last you longer and lower the dangers of possible choking.

Recommended Play Toys  Pets have different modes and reasons for play thus, require different toy types. Here are a few recommended for active, distraction and comfort toys. Active: Hard rubber toys, ropes with knotted ends and tennis balls are the best for active play. Be mindful that tennis balls can be torn, so monitoring the play is ideal to prevent ingestion. Distraction: Kong® toys are great for keeping your pooch engaged and happy for an extended period of time. Especially when filled with broken-up goodies or peanut butter, these toys can be the best choice to keep your pet occupied and entertained in a desirable manner. According to Paws, dental chews are perfect for gnawing and safe when ingested while also benefiting the pups dental health. Some brands to try out are: Greenies®, bullie sticks, and Petrodex® dental chews. Also, Paws suggests puzzle toys that require your pet to solve the puzzle before retrieving the treat locked inside. Comfort: Soft toys and articles of clothing can be a go-to for a dog when relaxed and settled. When purchasing a soft toy, try to be conscious of the size of your pet. A large dog would prefer a medium sized toy for example, while a smaller pup would favor one that is more proportional to a small rodent.

Helpful Hints Canines can get bored with their toys so try and switch them out a few times a month. This keeps the toys seeming new and intriguing to your pet. Make sure however to leave the one or two favorites to keep your pet happy. Also, try to mix things up. Keep around different types of toys to keep the dogs attention. Get involved! One thing pets love more than playtime, is playtime with you. Toys such as ropes and tennis balls come alive when played with together. Your pet also loves seeking for fun items, so try hiding treats or toys around for them to find. For young, high-energy pups interactive play offers an opportunity for socialization and helps them learn about acceptable and undesired behavior, such as jumping up or nipping. For some fun and safe toy ideas for your playful canine, look here

For more safety hazards for your dog you can view these Holiday Dangers For Pets.

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