Whether your dog is a pit bull puppy that simply must have massive toys due to his size or a sweet little sheltie that shreds toys in five seconds flat and looks as befuddled as you do when they fall apart, you’re clearly dealing with a strong chewer.
It doesn’t matter what size a dog is when it dawns on you that the ordinary cheap or cuddly toys just won’t do the trick. Of course, it helps if your dog doesn’t passionately hate squeakers to the point she tears up any toy with that feature just to get rid of them.
Five Affordable Dog Chewing Toys
Large beef bones can be found at local grocery and pets stores. These tasty treats make wonderful, long lasting toys. However, they can stain various surfaces so they’re best used outside if you’re picky about the furniture or the carpets.
Owners should keep in mind that it is not a good idea to give dogs small fragile bones, especially those from chickens, because they easily splinter and can seriously harm your pet. You’ll also want to select bones that are too large for your pet to swallow because otherwise they could choke.
I know rawhide bones sound good in theory and they’re relatively affordable, but I’d suggest resisting the temptation to appear like Father Christmas with a large bag of them. If you have an especially greedy pet or one that tends to devour everything in sight, the substance might end up sending your dog to the vet with a blocked digestive tract when consumed in large quantities. My poor dachshund was miserable, the vet bill was outrageous, and I had the dubious honor of trying to trick him into taking medicine twice a day for two weeks.
Of course, if real bones just don’t align with your design scheme or your dog doesn’t need more calories in their midst, you can select a more durable option like a Nylabone that will need to be thrown out when the chewed up pieces start breaking off of it.
Owners whose pets aren’t on diets can select something that is fully digestible instead such as pig ears or bully sticks, though either one of these only last a short while. Keep in mind that bully sticks aren’t generally messy but pig ears can be.
2. Tennis Ball (or similar)
They are not indestructible but they are usually cheap. I also find that balls in general last a lot longer than other toys.
In fact, our Pit has had a squeaky ball made of thick plastic since he was a puppy and it is still all in one piece. Yet, even tennis balls can be gnawed apart and destroyed.
In such instances, it’s a good idea to toss out the pieces as soon as you discover them to keep them from inadvertently being consumed.
If your dog is the type to deliberately try and eat the pieces, you will definitely want to refrain from purchasing tennis balls. Fortunately, my own wild animals like to chew things apart but they only eat edible things like safe human foods, live mint plants, and the occasional bumblebee.
3. Strong ropes
Target sells pet ropes very cheaply, but in this case you will want to match the rope size to the dog to make them last as long as possible. Our pit bull can eat his way through the smaller $1 ropes in about half an hour but he has yet to destroy the $10 rope we bought for him.
My sheltie has no interest whatsoever ever in disemboweling ropes, so she’s happy with the smaller one. It makes a good toy for both chewing and playing games of fetch.
4. Orka Toys
These toys are not as inexpensive as some of the other options on my list but they seem to work great for small breed chewers. My dachshunds and my sheltie love them.
Some of their Orka toys about 5+ years old and still largely intact. However, I would not say that these products are particularly long lasting for larger breeds.
Our pit has already chewed a few chunks out of the Orka Frisbee I bought him.
5. Kong Toys
I’m going to give these products an honorable mention because they certainly are durable and long lasting. They also withstand heavy chewing well and come in many different varieties. However, Kong toys are somewhat pricier than many of the other items on this list.
With the exception of the squeaky tennis balls, these products don’t seem to interest my dogs unless they’re stuffed with either the premade Kong treats or peanut butter.
They’re definitely worth a try for some dogs, but they are probably not the best option for breeds such as dachshunds that have a tendency to become overweight or those pets that already have weight problems.
What other toys out there can you recommend for strong chewers?