They said it was indestructible. They said it was no match for your dog.
And yet, here it is—that dog toy that you spent way too much money on, shredded to bits before your very eyes.
It’s too bad there isn’t a prize for “world's-fastest-toy-destroyer". If you’re tired of your pooch coming out victorious in the dog-versus-toy battle, it’s time to move on. Here’s how to do it.
Ice, Ice Baby
Your destructive dog’s favorite new toy is probably sitting in your freezer at this very moment. Yup, ice cubes are a dog’s best friend. You’ll probably get a laugh or two watching your dog skid the cube across the floor. He’ll chew it, he’ll swallow it, and it won’t matter—because it’s just an ice cube.
The only downside: it won’t last forever. Not to fret, there are plenty more where that came from.
Solid Rubber Anything
Any toy made of solid rubber is more likely to stand up to your dog’s powerful teeth. Avoid anything with narrow pieces that can be chewed through, or with bits that stick out that can be chewed off. Round is good. A solid rubber ball can provide endless hours of entertainment for your four-legged pal. Its spherical shape makes it tricky to pick apart, and you can incorporate the glory that is fetch, making play time more about running around than chewing aggressively.
There are certain dogs who can play nicely with most toys, but as soon as they see something with stuffing—it’s on. It’s just a matter of time before that white, fluffy stuffing is all over your living room floor. Thankfully, unstuffed plush dog toys exist. Dogs seem to love these guys, even without the stuffing.
Bones are a great option to give your dog something to gnaw on quietly—they can even help keep your pet's teeth clean. Natural raw marrow bones are your best bet but always avoid cooked bones which can splinter.
Edible Chew Toys
Pigs ears, elk horns, fish sticks—they may seem gross to you, but your dog probably loves licking, chomping, and nibbling at these edible toys. They won’t last forever, but they’re safe to play with and will keep your dog very happy.
A few other survival tips for owners of chewers: first, supervise your dog when he’s playing with a toy. If he’s getting destructive, simply take it away.
Second, ask your local pet store for recommendations. Some brands offer chew resistant guarantees; if your dog destroys the toy, you get your money back.
Finally, keep your dog mentally engaged by offering him a puzzle toy. A Kong® filled with peanut butter, for instance, will keep him distracted for a good chunk of time as he works his way to the magical treasure inside.
Magee Walker was a late bloomer to the snowboard scene, but thankfully discovered the joys of the sport after moving to Vancouver and spending weekends in Whistler. She's now lucky enough to call Whistler her full-time home, and spends her days conquering the mountain, by foot in the summer and by snowboard boot in the winter.