With the holidays swiftly approaching, thoughts of new dog toys fill two- and four-leggers' minds. Now is a good time to assess whether Fido’s much-loved toy has seen better days. Damaged toys with dangling parts that could be swallowed can prove hazardous, even fatal, to dogs. After assessing the wear and tear of your current toy selection, it is time to head out and do some shopping. But how can you be sure you are getting, and giving, toys that are safe for your canine friends? Here are five tips to keep in mind while you’re perusing the puppy aisle at your local pet store.
Keep in mind your dog’s size and buy appropriately. The larger the dog, the larger the toy; while it may look cute to see a bullmastiff with a toy made for a Chihuahua, if the toy is too small it’s a choking hazard.
2. Intended Use
Be sure to purchase toys intended for dogs, especially when it comes to the stuffed variety. Toys made for dogs have reinforced seams and stronger material than toys intended for children.
Look over the toys and make sure there are no loose parts that might be chewed off and ingested. Also, if you have a puppy, stay away from toys with long ropes that could wind around your little guy’s neck.
Many dog toys come with age guidelines and restrictions. Toys that are meant for more mature dogs are not right for puppies and vice versa.
For puppies, remember to keep it simple, with lots of chew toys that are on the softer side to protect young gums.