Bringing a puppy into your home can be fun, joyous, and exhausting. Most puppies have seemingly boundless amounts of energy. A puppy toy is a great way to channel that energy into play. Toys can also help your puppy socialize, get familiar with their new environment, and learn key developmental skills. Plus, it’s a fantastic bonding experience between you and your new pet.
Puppy toys come in just about every shape, color, and style. We’ve researched and reviewed some of the best-selling puppy toys for those who like to chew, tug, and snuggle. There are also options for every budget that can express your own interests and style. Puppy toys can even help puppies learn how to problem solve, chew safely, and engage in exercise to keep them growing strong.
A-Z-Animals Top Picks for Best Puppy Toys
- KONG Puppy Dog Toy
- Frisco Fetch Squeaking Colorful Tennis Ball Dog Toy
- Provides plenty of fun
- Very affordable
- Comes with a squeaker inside
- Dogs love the bright colors
- Nina Ottosson by Outward Hound Treat Tumble Puzzle Game Dog Toy
- Nylabone Puppy Chew Chicken, Lamb & Apple Flavored Puppy Chew Toy
- Smart Pet Love Snuggle Puppy Behavioral Aid Dog Toy
#1 Overall Best: Kong Natural Rubber Puppy Teething Toy
In our review, the best puppy toy is the Kong Natural Rubber Puppy Teething Toy. It bounces, is great for chewing, can be used for fetch, fits treats inside, and is affordable. This is everything that you might want in a puppy toy. It comes in two colors and four sizes. The rubber is specifically designed for puppies who are still learning to chew. The size is based on the size of your dog.
This toy is simple but genius in its design. You can throw it to play fetch, let your puppy chew on it, put treats inside the hollow interior for them to dig out, or bounce it. The three-tiered design results in an unpredictable bounce that will keep your puppy engaged.
As your puppy grows, you can give them this familiar toy throughout their lifetime. Kong makes a variety for adult dogs, vigorous chewers, and senior dogs. The design and function remain the same while the rubber changes to suit their chewing needs and capabilities. This toy will last through most puppies’ chewing. “It has held up to her chewing and it sort of bounces and rolls on the floor so it does encourage her to move and chase it around a bit,” wrote one reviewer. “I have used peanut butter and apples in it but it isn’t necessary for her to have food inside.”
2. Best Budget Pick: Frisco Fetch Squeaking Colorful Tennis Balls, Pack of 3
There’s nothing like a good old-fashioned tennis ball to play with your puppy. This colorful pack of three is affordable and provides plenty of fun for you and your new pet. They have a squeaker inside to give an extra dose of stimulation and excitement. “My dog isn’t a fan of tennis balls so she wouldn’t chase them when we’d throw them to get her to run off some energy. But oh does she love a squeaky toy so this fantastic 2-in-1 toy,” said one reviewer. “Now she’ll chase the ball and bring it back happily squeaking away.”
These are sized for small and medium dogs, making them a great option for all but the smallest puppies. Keep in mind that if your puppy likes to chew (as most do), these won’t last for the long haul. You will probably just get a short amount of time of play before your puppy destroys them. You can either dole them out one at a time to make the pack of three last longer or plan on upgrading to another more durable toy once your puppy outgrows its intense chewing phase.
- Provides plenty of fun
- Very affordable
- Comes with a squeaker inside
- Dogs love the bright colors
3. Best Puzzle Toy: Nina Ottosson by Outward Hound Treat Tumble Interactive Toy
Puzzle toys are a great way to engage your puppy’s problem-solving skills with positive incentives like treats. The Nina Ottosson Tumble Blue Interactive Treat-Dispensing Puzzle Toy from Outward Hound is our top pick for puzzle-loving pups. After you fill the toy with treats or food, they dispense as your puppy rolls the ball around and plays. They will quickly learn how to get the treats out and go to town with this fun toy. Breeds that thrive with mental stimulation really love this toy. “I love this toy and so does my dog,” said one reviewer. “She’s a very smart dog, being a terrier, which tends to be a very intelligent breed. It’s hard to find toys that she doesn’t figure out within the first 5 minutes. This one kept her entertained, interested, and mentally stimulated.”
As your puppy grows, you can introduce other puzzle toys from Outward Hound to keep them engaged and exercise their minds as well as their bodies. With options ranging from beginner to expert and a variety of styles, there is almost no limit to the amount of puzzle-solving your puppy and dog can do.
- Keep the dog entertained and mentally stimulated
- Develop the puppy's problem-solving skills
- Very easy to clean
- Made from food-safe material
4. Best for Puppies to Chew: Nylabone Puppy Chew Variety Pack of 3
This triple pack of puppy chew bones is perfect for every stage of your puppy’s development. Nylabone recommends beginning with the nubby chew bone to help your puppy as they are teething. This also teaches chewing habits that they can use for the rest of their lives. They will then graduate to the next teething bone and eventually to an actual bone to chew and eat. There is plenty of flavor and color options, as well as a puppy starter pack that also includes additional chew toys.
One reviewer said that it was her dog’s favorite toy. “I have been buying this little blue dinosaur chew toy for my pug since she was 8 weeks old and it was love at first sight. She is extremely food-driven and this toy is perfect for that! It’s flavored so she has the incentive to chew on it even as a 3-year-old dog now and it helps keep her teeth clean!”
- Plenty of flavor and color options
- Can help puppy teething
- Help keeps teeth clean
- Good for all development stages of your puppy
5. Best Snuggle Toy: Smart Pet Love Snuggle Puppy
This snuggle puppy is so adorable you may even find that you steal it for yourself or your kids. It comes in five different colors so you can get a snuggle buddy to match your new puppy. The plush exterior is soft and machine washable. All you have to do is take out the battery pack.
For puppies with separation anxiety, this toy can be a game-changer. It replicates the comforting feel of having a mom dog around, with a beating heartbeat and optional heat pack. The heartbeat can be turned on continuously or for an eight-hour time span. When you crate train your puppy, this can help a lot to keep them calm. It also works great for puppies who have trouble sleeping.
One reviewer called this toy a miracle. “As soon as I got it, I introduced her to Mr. Snuggles, as we call it, during the day so she could get used to it. Immediately my puppy started tugging on it like she was wrestling with one of her littermates. That night I put Mr. Snuggles in her bed (kennel) with her and the whimpering only lasted a few seconds instead of minutes on end. We went from her waking up about 3x a night to only once, sometimes twice.”
This is an expensive toy but holds up well in the washing machine and gives you, the new puppy owner, some much-needed rest. Many reviewers were happy to pay for the peace of mind of knowing that their puppy was content and the extra sleep for them.
- Comes in five different colors
- Soft and machine washable
- Features an optional heat pack
- Good for puppies with separation anxiety
Choosing the Best: What to Look For
When deciding on a puppy toy for your new pet, look for something that is affordable, durable, and provides plenty of enrichment.
You may be tempted to spend a lot of cute, fun puppy toys once you bring your adorable new pet home. While there are plenty of high-quality puppy toys out there, you should consider how much you want to spend upfront. You will likely need to replace puppy toys quickly since most puppies chew in the beginning. This can be due to teething or just natural puppy behavior. Look for an affordable toy that you won’t mind getting destroyed, at least until your puppy has learned what and what not to chew.
Puppies can play rough and cause a surprising amount of damage given their tiny little bodies. Look for a puppy toy that can withstand rough play and plenty of chewing. The best puppy toys are made to last through teething, chewing, tugging, and plenty of other interactive play.
Puppies need plenty of stimulation and enrichment. Toys are the ideal way to teach them skills like chasing, tugging, and appropriate chewing. They can also provide outlets to help with things like separation anxiety and teething. Look for toys that are designed to enrich your puppy’s development. Many will state the skills that they help with as well as how puppy owners can use the toy to improve their puppy’s quality of life.
The Different Types of Puppy Toys: Pros and Cons Compared
When deciding on a puppy toy, consider if you want a toy that is meant to be destroyed and chewed or one that you want to last for your puppy to snuggle and play with calmly. Each type has pros and cons and is suited for different situations.
|Great for puppy development||The puppy may not like the taste|
|Supports healthy teeth||Needs to be replaced eventually|
|Usually inexpensive||Can cause a mess|
|Helps with anxiety||Often more expensive|
|Useful for crate training||The puppy may lose interest over time|
|No mess made||Doesn’t help with physical exercise|
Verified Review: User Experience
Kong toys are some of the most popular options for puppies, adult dogs, and senior dogs so it is no surprise that reviewers had great things to say about our top overall pick, the natural rubber teething toy.
“Our 17-week-old puppy has never loved a toy so much!” said one reviewer. “We adopted her from the Humane Society at 8-weeks old and her teething/mouthiness (biting our hands, clothing, and feet) was a nightmare. I should have caved in and bought this KONG toy then instead of waiting until now.”
“We got this for my Shih Tzu puppy, thinking it would be a nice occasional treat for him. We now pull this thing out at least twice a week,” wrote another reviewer. “He can bark a lot, but if you place this thing down in front of him he’s quiet for at least an hour or two, working his way through it. It’d held up through his puppy teeth and adult teeth with very minimal wear and tear (there’s just scratching around the wide bottom portion).” You can also upgrade to the same toy in a sturdier rubber for adult dogs, vigorous chewers, and eventually senior dogs as well.