Paws up if the sight of your dog joyously gnawing on a favorite chew toy is one of your favorite pastimes.
But when that chew toy doubles as a dental care tool, well, that’s a whole new level of tail-wagging happiness!
While it’s all fun and games on the surface, your dog’s oral hygiene can often be a concern hiding in the back of your mind. The tartar build-up, the potential for gum disease, not to mention the infamous ‘doggy breath’—it’s enough to leave any dog owner wondering if there’s a better way.
Enter, dental chews and toys! Oh, just wait until you find out how much they can do.
Our tried and tested top picks:
|KONG Classic Dog Toy||Tough natural rubber, Ideal for strong chewers, Can be filled with treats|
|Nylabone Dental Chew Dinosaur||Dinosaur shape, Raised bristles for cleaning, Suitable for medium to large dogs|
|Petstages Dogwood Stick||Made from real wood, Promotes dental health, Satisfies natural chewing urge|
|Benebone Wishbone||Infused with real food ingredients, Unique wishbone shape, Enhances oral health|
|Hartz Chew ‘n Clean Tuff Bone||Ideal for mild to moderate chewers, Tasty bacon-flavored center, Textured surface for tartar and plaque removal|
Why Bother with Dental Toys?
Let’s face it, brushing your dog’s teeth is not exactly the most straightforward task.
Have you ever tried convincing a Golden Retriever that mint-flavored toothpaste is a treat? Or how about getting a Yorkie to sit still long enough for a good scrub? Exactly. That’s where dental toys come in.
Dental toys, with their innovative designs, are a canine care marvel. They serve a dual purpose: keeping your dog entertained and promoting their oral health. They work by scraping off plaque and tartar build-up, freshening breath, and massaging gums, all while your furry friend enjoys playtime.
Pair these with regular vet visits and occasional professional cleanings, and you’ve got a solid dental hygiene regimen for your dog.
Sizing up the Different Types of Dental Toys
Not all dental toys are created equal. Depending on your dog’s size, breed, and chewing habits, some dental toys may be more effective than others.
The general rule of paw here is to pick a toy that suits your dog’s size and chewing strength.
For instance, for the small breeds with a tenacious spirit, think Chihuahuas or French Bulldogs, opt for something small but durable. On the other hand, larger breeds with powerful jaws, like German Shepherds or Mastiffs, would benefit more from heavy-duty dental chews designed to withstand intense chewing.
The goal is to find a dental toy that can stand up to your pup’s chewing prowess while effectively cleaning their teeth and gums. It’s a bit of a balancing act, but don’t worry, we’re here to help you nail it!
Our Top Dental Toy Picks
We’ve tried, tested, and rounded up our favorites that have passed the ‘canine seal of approval.’ Here they are:
The Kong Classic is an all-time favorite, and for good reason. Its natural rubber composition is tough enough for strong chewers yet gentle on teeth and gums. Fill it with a smear of peanut butter or a few kibbles, and you’ve got yourself a dental-care power toy!
Spoil your pup with the Kong Classic and watch them enjoy their new favourite dental-care toy!
Nylabone’s Power Chew not only boasts an exciting dinosaur shape but it’s also designed with raised bristles that clean teeth and freshen breath as your pup chews. This dental toy is a hit among medium to large-size dogs with a strong chewing instinct.
Bring home the Dinosaur and give your dog the fun and healthy chew time they deserve!
This one is for our stick-loving dogs who’d fetch all day if they could! Made from real wood and durable synthetic material, the Dogwood Stick by Petstages satisfies your dog’s natural urge to chew while promoting dental health.
Fetch the Dogwood Stick for your pup and keep their teeth clean while they enjoy their natural urge to chew!
For the flavor-loving doggos out there, the Benebone Wishbone has real food ingredients infused into it. Its unique wishbone shape allows dogs to get a good grip, making the chewing process not only satisfying but also beneficial to their oral health.
Delight your dog’s taste buds and cater to their oral health with the Benebone Wishbone!
Ideal for mild to moderate chewers, the Hartz Tuff Bone combines a hard exterior with a tasty, bacon-flavored center that encourages repeated chewing. Plus, its textured surface helps remove tartar and plaque build-up.
Upgrade your pup’s playtime with the Hartz Tuff Bone, a tasty and tooth-friendly chew toy!
Remember, every dog is unique in their preferences and chewing style, so it might take a bit of trial and error before finding the perfect dental toy. But when you do, it’s a win-win – your pup gets a fun toy, and you can rest easy knowing you’re taking a proactive step towards their dental health.
Got Your Dental Toy? Here’s How to Use it!
So, you’ve got your chosen dental chew toy – great choice! But how should you use it effectively to promote oral health?
- Introduce Gradually. Don’t rush your dog into using the new toy. Allow them to sniff and explore the toy at their own pace. Make sure they are comfortable with the new addition to their toy collection.
- Size Matters. Ensure the toy is the appropriate size for your dog. If it’s too small, there’s a risk of swallowing; if it’s too big, they may not engage with it at all. The right-sized toy should be difficult for your dog to close their mouth around completely.
- Monitor Usage. Always supervise your dog when they are using a new dental toy. This allows you to intervene if they’re using it incorrectly, or if the toy starts to break down, which could be a choking hazard.
- Regular Cleaning. Just as you’d brush your dog’s teeth, their dental toys also need regular cleaning. Depending on the type of toy, this might involve scrubbing under hot water, or even running it through the dishwasher.
- Replace Regularly. If the dental toy becomes too worn, it’s time to replace it. Regularly check the toy for signs of wear and tear.
Remember, you know your dog best! So, stay observant and make adjustments based on your pup’s preferences and behavior. Here’s to your dog’s dental health!
Are all dog dental toys safe for puppies?
Not all dog dental toys are safe for puppies. It’s crucial to select those that are specifically labeled as safe for puppies, taking into account their size, and the fact that their teeth and gums are still developing.
How often should I replace my dog’s dental toys?
The frequency of replacing dental toys depends on the wear and tear they undergo. If the toy is broken, frayed, or pieces are falling off, it’s time to replace it.
What if my dog doesn’t seem interested in dental toys?
If your dog doesn’t seem interested in dental toys, try different types, shapes, and flavors. Encourage interaction by playing with the toy and your dog.
Can these toys replace brushing my dog’s teeth?
While dental toys significantly contribute to oral health, they should complement, not replace, regular brushing. Both methods together ensure optimal dental hygiene for your dog.