Whether you are just about to welcome a new four-legged member to your family or are currently an owner, it’s important to understand the role play has in your canine’s life. As well as enabling them to let steam off and get the physical exercise they need, play also helps provide them with the cognitive and mental stimulation you need to remain happy and content animals and there’s where toys for dogs come in.
In that sense, dogs are very similar to children. Therefore, finding the best interactive games for you is not just advised but encouraged. When you give a dog the exercise it needs while stimulating its metal and cognitive abilities, it ensures they have a more pleasant temperament are more obedient, use their natural instincts and easier to train and are less likely to suffer from the adverse effects of frustration and boredom which could stop them chewing up your house. All dogs love a challenge.
Now, the best way to find suitable interactive toys for your dog would be to do a lot of research and spend time browsing through many different products. However, we know you really don’t have that kind of time free to spend, which is why at Internet Eyes, we want to help you out.
We have done the leg work, so you don’t have to and in the following guide you will find the best interactive toys of 2020. Not only that though, but to further help you make the right decision for your waggly-tailed pal, we’ve provided an insightful buying guide that includes a look at the features that are important to look out for when buying these interactive toys for your dog.
Ok then, dog owners, here are our top 10 games.
Best Interactive Dog Toys of 2020
1. Trixie Dog Activity Flip Board
Getting our guide off to a fabulous start is one of the best interactive dog treat toys on the market from one of the most highly respected brands in the industry. Trixie have a sterling reputation, based on the many year’s they have spent designing, developing and creating dog and pet products, including toys. The Flip Board strategy game is another example of their commitment to quality and ingenuity.
It takes fully on board that dogs are inquisitive, intelligent, love a challenge and has been designed to have two different difficulty levels. Though any size Is free to have a go, this model would suit smaller pooches. There are various places you can hide treats that they must try and find. You could even place a bit of peanut butter under the smaller ones for them to eat.
In order to access the treats, your dog needs to figure out the opening techniques for the sliders and flaps and lift the cones. You get 2 cones with the board and there are indentations in the board where sliders and hinged lids go. All components are made from dishwasher-safe, tough plastic and the base of the board has non-slip rubber feet.
2. Trixie Activity Game, Turn Around Level 2
Next up we have another great dog treat dispenser toy option from Trixie. This time it’s the appropriately named Turn Around dog strategy game from their Dog Activity range. It consists of a stand with 3 elements that can be turned and 2 lids. Inside the containers that can be turned you can store your four-legged friend’s favourite treats or kibble.
The idea behind the toy, therefore, is very simple. If your dog wants to get those tasty treats, they need to figure out how to turn the elements and release the scrummy nibbles. They won’t be able to get at the treats with just brute force, however, as the lids add an additional level of difficulty to the containers you choose to use them on to really work on their mental stimulation.
As with all Trixie Dog Activity toys, Turn Around is made from dish-washer safe plastic (the turning elements) and features non-slip rubberised feet on the base to secure it in place, even when your dog is roughly playing with it.
3. Feixun Pets Dog Treat Toy Ball
If there’s 2 things you can usually rely on when it comes to dogs – they love playing with balls and love a bit of something yummy for their tummy! Therefore, a treat ball is one of the most common types of interactive treat dispensing dog toys you will find on the market. From Feixun Pets, we wanted to highlight their great dog treat toy ball. Made from a non-toxic and chewing resistant rubber, this is very simple to set up and will provide your dog with hours of fun.
Load up the treat ball with your dog’s favourite treats or kibble and then watch as he/she tries to bite at it and roll it around to release the goodies hidden within. As many interactive dog toys are made with several different motivations, although this product is designed to provide your dog with mental and physical stimulation, it also helps provide another great benefit for your canine pal.
The sawtooth design in the different indentations around the treat ball are designed to fit your dog’s tooth shape. This means when they are clawing and biting at the toy to release the treats, they are also giving their teeth a bit of a clean.
4. Starmark Bob-a-Lot Interactive Dog Toy, Small
If you have or if you did spend a lot of time looking at the different options out there you will notice, there’s a lot of interactive dog feeding toys. Which isn’t surprising as much of a dog’s day revolves around playing, eating, toilets and sleeping. Next on our list is another of our Favourite interactive treat dispensing dog toys from Starmark.
Starmark is a name that many reading this may be familiar with, as they are one of the leading brands in the pet education and toy sector. They make products, including toys, that are designed to make sure pets are happy and have good relationships with their owners.
The Bob-a-Lot is a very self-explanatory, but intriguing interactive toy. You simply load it up with treats or food at the top. For your dog to get any food or treats, he or she must bobble and wobble the toy. You can control how easy or difficult it is for your dog to get at the treats or kibble, by adjusting the openings around the toy appropriately.
5. Zellar Treat Dispensing Dog Toy
Like the Bob-a-Lot, this next product from Zellar is another highly effective and stimulating interactive dog feeding toy. Made from high-quality polycarbonate and ABS, it is not only tough and easy to clean, but also completely safe for your four-legged family member. Its egg shape not only makes it fun for your dog to wobble around but can help to stop him/her trying to get it into their mouth to break.
It’s a very easy toy to setup and fill up with your dog’s favourite snacks or even a portion of their daily dry food. To make things harder or easier for your dog, depending on how well they get on with the toy, you can adjust the size of the holes on the treat dispenser where the toys leak out. At the top of the tow there are three holes that help to encourage your dog to go hunting for food.
6. IFOYO Squeak Dog Toys
Interactive puzzle dog toys, like this plush offering from IFOYO, are a great way of making dogs use their brains. This product is essentially a doggy hide and seek toy. It’s been made from high-quality and tear resistant plush to stop it from falling apart too easily.
The toy consists of a base and three bee toys made from the same plush material. The toys fit inside the holes in the base for your dog to try and fish out. As well as being attracted to the softness of the plush material, your dog will also love the fact that the individual toys squeak when squeezed. You may not be as thrilled, though, after a while!
Given its relatively low-price tag, we think this is a great cost-effective investment. Despite the high quality plush used in its construction though, it is not suitable for aggressive biters and chewers.
7. Outward Hound Nina Ottosson Dog Tornado Treat Puzzle Dog Toy
Dog Tornado, from the combined efforts of Outward Hound and Nina Ottosson, is another interactive puzzle dog toy that will provide hours of both physical and mental exertion for your four-legged friend. It consists of 4 spinning levels with a total of 12 compartments for placing your dog’s favourite treats and food.
It is a great teaching tool and can even be incorporated into their mealtime to make feeding time a more engaging and active experience. As your dog sniffs out the food, he or she then must spin the Tornado (see why it’s called such a curious name now?) to release any. Like all good toys, the base is equipped with rubberised feet. Although marketed to dogs of any size, we think it would suit smaller dogs better and provide them with a longer lasting and more taxing puzzle to solve.
8. Invero 8-Piece Fun Dog Interactive Puzzle Training Game
Next, we have yet another interactive puzzle dog toy that gives out treats to clever dogs who manage to work it out. It does require that they use their brain and work hard to get them. The toy consists of a blue base in the shape of a dog’s paw that houses 7 little treat holders that are also in the shape of a dog’s paw.
Basically, your dog needs to rely on its ability to sniff and lift. Again, like others we’ve already featured, this is an awesome way to keep your dog entertained and could even be used to extend their mealtimes. Often dog’s respond favourably to having to work for their food even at mealtimes, because if they were still a wild animal, that’s what they’d have to do.
9. Trixie Dog Activity Memory Trainer Strategy Game
The second to last product in our list is a dispenser toy for treats. It is also our third from Trixie who really do make great games. The Memory Trainer is another strategy game from the Dog Activity range and although it’s a little on the pricey side compared to others, we’ve featured, we think its design and functionality more than makes up for it.
The game is battery operated and may prove to be a demanding and engaging toy for dogs of just about any age and size. It comes with a container you can fill with treats or kibble, a release button that makes a sound to signal to your dog. The basic concept is that your dog needs to press the button with either their nose or paw to make foods come out of the container.
Sound easy enough? The real fun begins after your dog has learned the basics. Then you can increase the distance there is between the button and the memory trainer. The really great thing about this is just how versatile you can be with where you place the button. It doesn’t necessarily have to be flat on the ground, as you can use a suction cup to attach it to a wall or use a peg to keep it in place in grass or sand.
If you have the container and the button within 40-metres of one another, the toy will operate properly. This is sure to become one of your favourite dogs toys. As a dog owner myself this is one my dog loves.
10. Nina Ottosson Dog Treat Maze Activity Toy, Large
Our final product is the second connected to the great mind of Nina Ottosson. This is one of those interactive puzzle dog toys we’re sure your dog will come back to again and again. As the name suggests, it’s a maze-style treat dispenser that is ideal for dogs of all ages and abilities. You can use it with wet and dry food, and it is made from extremely hardwearing materials.
You basically load it up with food and then your dog or dogs must try and move it around and shift the moving parts to release those tasty titbits. It really is as simple as that. Because it has the Nina Ottossson name, though, you will know it has been designed and built to the highest standards. It’s also been approved by vets and is very easy to wash, by simply running it under the tap.
Best Interactive Dog Games – Buyer’s Guide
A little knowledge and insight can go a long way to helping you make the right buying decisions in life. So, although we are sure you will find some great interactive dog toy games from the list above, we wanted to help make your choice a little easier with this buying guide. As with anything related to your beloved pet, you need to make the right choice based on their own individual personality, size and type of dog they are.
Features That Are Important
When you take the personality, size and even breed type of your dog into consideration, there are also some features you need to think about before buying.
Is the Difficulty Level Adjustable?
As you’re most probably aware, not all dogs are made equally. Some are incredibly bright, scarily so, whereas others question whether man’s best friend is a little thick at times.
That’s why it’s impossible to design dog puzzle games or interactive toy that is suitable for all dogs including some are puppy toys. Therefore, it’s vital the toys you choose have a degree of adjustability, so you can make them easier or harder depending on how your dog responds to them. While a dog toy that is too hard for your canine pal to figure out is hardly going to hold their interest for very long, one that is too easy Is likely to have the same effect. So always try to find the most adjustable interactive dog toys you can.
How Safe Is it?
Just as you would always ensure young children have toys that have been designed and made with non-toxic materials that won’t harm them, you need to look for the same thing when choosing dog toys. As dogs use their mouth to play most of the time, it’s crucial that the toys you buy your four-legged chum are safe for their mouth.
Are There Different Sizes Available?
When you are looking at specific toys and thinking ‘my dog might like that’ you need to consider its dimensions and if its too big or too small look for a toy that is the right size for your dog. The size of the toy in relation to your pet can impede their ability to get the full experience out of using it or even ruin it completely.
How Easy is it To Clean?
This really could go at any point in our guide – even as the first point. Most involve the use of treats, and due to the fact, your dog’s mouth and paws get all over them, they are often very dirty. It’s important, therefore, to find interactive dog toys you can easily clean, to keep you, your dog and your household hygienic areas. If you invest in a toy that’s not very easy to clean at all, you may have a hard time ensuring its hygienic which would lead to the build up of dirt and grime. Not only that, but it can be a time-consuming hassle to clean them up.
Dog toys are more than just tennis balls and a ball launcher. Dogs respond to attention, both positive and negative. When you take the time and spend a little to ensure they have enough to keep their brains as stimulated as their bodies are, you will have a much happier and content animal. We are sure using the guide above will help you find the best interactive dog toys for your furry friend.