So, I asked you guys a while ago about things you wanted me to write about. I did not forget but instead will try to have those posts sprinkled throughout my other posts when those issues arise or there are no client dogs to show you.
So, since I have a new puppy there will be lots of posts that are related to “Puppy Stuff” and some of the questions you had in regards to puppies, socialization, products for puppies, treats, traveling with puppies, and what to do when you bring the puppy home. These things of course can be used with adult dogs as well.
Today’s post is about Treats, Toys, and other products for your puppy which can be purchased before or after the puppy has come home.
For me I honestly use the puppies kibble most of the time. I have many reasons for this however the biggest is because too many treats can cause diarrhea which when you are trying to potty train can make that almost impossible.
So, every day I measure out how much food the puppy is supposed to have. A small amount is placed in the bowl for breakfast. A larger amount (1/2 to 2/3rds) is saved out for training and puzzle toys. Whatever is left is placed in a bowl for dinner.
I do also give my own puppies extra treats HOWEVER it is probably no more than 2-3 per day at most. Most days they never see the fancy treats at all. They don’t know care what I am giving them just that I am giving them something tasty.
There are LOTS of different toys on the market now days and as all of them say please monitor your puppy as no matter what toys I like they may not be what will work for your puppy.
I always suggest have 3-4 groups of toys for your puppies with each group containing 6-10 toys of different types. Put one group of toys out for one to two weeks depending on your puppy. Some puppies get bored with toys really easy and need toys switched out almost daily. If that is the case then I would suggest only putting out 5-6 toys per day then switch those toys out daily. If your puppy will play with the toys you have out keep them out as long as the puppy plays with them but no more than two weeks. Then rotate to the second group of toys putting the first group away. Rotate through all 3-4 groups every two weeks and by the time you get back to group one the puppy will think that those toys are new. Puppies that are playing with toys are less likely to be playing with your shoes, socks, chewing on table legs and so on.
Specific Toys I like is a little dependent on what the puppy likes and the breed you are working with. Small breeds tend to like softer toys and dislike super hard toys while larger breeds like everything but tend to destroy the soft toys however there are exceptions to this of course.
My favorite toys for very small breeds are actually the larger cat toys they have on the market. They seem to keep the super small puppies entertained with the noises they make and are about the right size.
For the medium to large breed dogs I try to buy my toys on the larger side so that I do not have to replace the toys as they grow. Instead if I get the size they will need as an adult I should be good unless they destroy it.
Some of my favorite things for the destructive dogs is deer/elk antlers, (Water) Buffalo Horns, Nylabones, Filled Sterile Bones, Kong toys, and the more indestructible puzzle toys. Yes, some of these potentially can cause teeth to break however with all things I give my dogs I weigh the pro’s and con’s. I personally would rather potentially have a broken tooth vs have the dogs chew up my couch or house. That though needs to be a decision you make with your own dogs and your own comfort level.
Puzzle Toys were mentioned earlier and I will put a quick note in here about them and have a separate post later next week on them. Puzzle toys in general are toys that you put food/treats in and the dog has to figure out how to get those items out. There are flat board types, ball types, cube types and so many more. I use these to keep very active puppies busy if I need to do something. This is where their extra food you saved comes in or I will even just feed one or more of their meals from these puzzle toys. There are a few that I like especially for the larger more destructive dogs and they are the Bob-a-lot, Tug-a-Jug, IQ Treat ball, Kong’s with frozen treats inside.