How To

How to Choose the Safest (And Most Fun!) Toys for Small Dogs

toys for small dogs

Could it be Christmas? A birthday perhaps? Or maybe it’s a gift just to say, “I love you”?

Pet parents everywhere are finding excuses to bring home more toys for their fur babies.

Raise your paw if you’ve ever found yourself standing in the pet store struggling to decide whether your pup would prefer the cute ducky toy or the savory chicken leg chew toy.

We know it’s a problem for many pet parents, so we’ve come up with a guide to help you find the safest and best toy for your pup.

Ready for playtime?

Read on to find out how to pick the best toys for small dogs.

Best Toys For Small Dogs

You may be surprised to find out that the toys we recommend for your pup are neither the cute ducky or squeaky chicken leg toy. Instead, we recommend safe, practical toys that will keep your pup just as entertained and busy.

Anything rubber

Rubber is a gift.

There are soft or hard rubber toys, big or small. Rubber toys are great for dogs to chew on not only because it’s difficult to destroy them, but also because the rubber is great for their teeth and gum health.

Kong style toys, for example, are made of a hard rubber that is difficult for dogs to chew through. Some of their toys even come with guarantees that your pup won’t be able to completely dismantle it.

ProTip: Whichever rubber toy you choose, make sure that it’s size appropriate. Purchasing too big of a toy can leave your pup bored and unexcited, and purchasing a toy that’s too small can be a choking hazard.

Rope Toys

Even we played tug-a-war when we were kids, and our pups love it just as much as we did.

There are rope toys with balls on the tennis ends, bouncy balls, or even simple knots in the middle.

Find a size appropriate rope and watch your pup kick your butt at a game of tug-a-war.

Don’t have a rope? Easy. Find an old sock that’s better half was lost somewhere in the dryer, tie a knot in the middle, and voila. Although we hate the smell, it’s a bonus for your pup that it smells like you.


It’s important to exercise your dog’s legs and body, but it’s easy to forget about their mind. Just like us, dogs can develop similar diseases to Alzheimer’s or Dementia. It’s important to keep their minds actively thinking to help prevent such diseases.

Hide-a-treat toys are great for keeping your pup thinking. You can find hide-a-treat toys that are simple or complex. Your pup might prefer an easy open style toy or a more complex puzzle style toy. 

Whichever your pup prefers, simply put a few of your pup’s favorite treats inside the puzzle toy and release the hounds. You can even upgrade to harder toys as your pup learns each one.

Keep your pooch pampered and happy all day long with these toys.

Types of Toys to Avoid

If we were to be granted one wish, it would be that all of the bad puppy toys disappear from the market.

Unfortunately, some companies are more interested in making a profit than how healthy your pup is. For this reason, we’ve listed a couple types of toys you should avoid purchasing for your pup.

Squeaky Toys

We know, puppies of all ages love squeaky toys. But this is a hard warning for all pet owners: squeaky toys are dangerous. Especially for the little breeds.

Inside each of these toys is a small plastic device that works by pushing air in and out when the puppy chews, similar to the way a whistle works. This results in that annoying, high-pitched squeak that keeps you up at night.

If your pup is much of a chewer, and we’re guessing that’s probably the case, then the chance of them consuming such squeaker is way too high for our comfort.

Unless you’re looking to turn your pup into a live squeaky toy, we suggest you avoid these toys.

Anything with Stuffing

Again, if you’ve got an active chewer on your hands, stuffed toys can pose a threat. We’re not quite sure why, but for some reason, dogs seem to love the taste of stuffing.

How many times have you come home after a long day, only to find a trail of white stuffing leading to a very happy puppy’s bed? Even with all of that stuffing on your floor, it’s quite likely that your dog has actually swallowed a few mouthfuls.

Sure, in a few days your puppy will hopefully poop out the extra stuffing, but there is always a chance of stomach or small intestine blockage. If this occurs, you should expect a costly and scary exploratory surgery.

Best bet: avoid stuffed toys.

Happy Paw-Play Time!

Brand name companies want you to buy the cutest toys for small dogs, but the reality of it is that it doesn’t matter which toy you choose for your pup, they will likely love all of them. Your pup doesn’t care if it’s the t-bone shaped toy or the ugly pink rope, they are just happy to have playtime. 

But what about when playtime is over, and you’ve got to get to work? If you’re worried about keeping your pup busy while you’re away, check out these helpful tips.

Ready for playtime?

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