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What is a Kong dog toy?
A Kong dog toy is a type of hard-wearing chew toy that is made of natural rubber. It is designed to be durable and to withstand the heavy chewing of dogs. The Kong toy was first introduced in the 1970s and has since become one of the most popular dog toys on the market. It’s a hollow toy in the shape of a three tiered snowman or beehive.
How do I use a Kong toy?
Kong toys can be used for a variety of purposes, such as keeping your dog entertained, providing them with a chewing outlet, and even helping to potty train your pup. To use a Kong toy, simply fill it with your dog’s favorite treat or food and then give it to them. Some dogs will immediately start chewing on the Kong, while others may need a little encouragement. Once your dog starts chewing, they will likely be occupied for quite some time.
What size Kong for my dog?
Kong toys come in a variety of sizes, from extra small to extra extra large. It is important to choose the right size Kong for your dog.
If the Kong is too small, your dog may be able to destroy it or choke on it. If the Kong is too large, your dog may not be able to get its mouth around it, which can lead to frustration.
There are recommended dog weight ranges for each size of Kong so it is easy to choose the correct one.
What are some of the benefits of using a Kong dog toy?
Kong toys are beneficial for both dogs and their owners. They can help to keep your dog entertained and distracted from destructive behaviors. Additionally, Kongs can help to relieve boredom and separation anxiety in dogs. Licking and chewing are calming behaviors for dogs that help them to relax and de-stress.
How often should I give my dog a Kong toy?
How often you give your dog a Kong toy will depend on a variety of factors, such as your dog’s age, size, and chewing habits.
It is generally recommended that you give your dog a Kong toy at least a few times per week, but for dogs who need more low impact enrichment activities, such as dogs who are on crate rest due to recovering from injury, you could feed the majority of their food from the Kong if they enjoy it.
What to put in a dog Kong?
There are a variety of things that you can use as Kong fillings, such as:
- Treats: Small treats or kibble can be used to fill the Kong. Be sure to choose a treat that is appropriate for your dog’s size and chewing habits.
- Peanut butter: Peanut butter is a popular Kong filling for dogs. It is important to choose a peanut butter that does not contain xylitol, as this can be toxic to dogs.
- Cheese: Cheese can also be used to fill a Kong dog toy. Again, be sure to choose a cheese that is safe for dogs and appropriate for your dog’s size.
- Cooked chicken: Cooked chicken is another Kong filling that dogs love. Be sure to let the chicken cool before adding it to the Kong.
- Yogurt: Plain yogurt can be used to fill a Kong dog toy. It is important to choose a yogurt that does not contain artificial sweeteners, as these can be toxic to dogs. Yogurt can be quite runny, so it’s worth popping it in the freezer to firm it up before giving it to your dog.
- Dog food: Dog food can also be used to fill a Kong dog toy. Be sure to choose a food that is appropriate for your dog’s age, size, and activity level.
As you can see, there are a variety of things that you can put in a Kong dog toy. Ultimately, the best thing to put in a Kong is something that your dog will enjoy and that will keep them entertained.
Experiment with different fillings to see what your dog likes best. I put chopped up leftovers from our roast dinner in our dogs’ Kongs and they love it. Just make sure anything you put in their Kong is safe for dogs to eat.
What to put in a Kong for a puppy?
When choosing what to put in a Kong for a puppy, it is important to select an appropriate treat. Puppies have sensitive stomachs and can easily become overwhelmed if they eat too many new foods. For this reason, it is best to choose stuffing ideas that are easy for them to digest.
By making a large proportion of the Kong filling based on their usual food, they are less likely to experience a runny tummy. If you’re looking for puppy Kong stuffing ideas, some good options include mixing their usual food with some of the following:
- A small amount of grated cheese
- A small amount of cooked chicken or turkey
- Plain yogurt mixed with a little peanut butter
Experiment with different Kong filling recipes to see what your puppy likes best. Just be sure to start with a small amount and increase the amount gradually as needed. If you notice that your puppy is having trouble digesting a certain Kong filling, discontinue use and consult your veterinarian.
Can Kongs be used for teething puppies?
When some dogs are teething they can go through a real destructive phase, chewing on everything in sight!
Kongs can be really helpful for teething puppies. The act of chewing on a Kong can help to soothe aching teeth and gums and distract from the discomfort of teething. The coolness of a frozen Kong can help to reduce inflammation and ease pain.
Which Kong for my dog?
The type of Kong you choose for your dog will depend on a few factors, such as your dog’s size, age, and chewing habits.
- Puppies and small dogs will need a Kong that is made of softer materials and is the appropriate size for them. These come in pink or blue, instead of the distinctive red rubber of the standard classic Kong range.
- Senior dogs or dogs with dental problems may do better with a softer Kong that is designed specifically for them. These are recognizable by the purple colour.
- For tough chewers there is the range of Kong Extreme dog toys, which are more durable with thicker rubber – these are distinguishable from the range due to their black colour.
Kong offers a range of different sizes and textures to keep your dog entertained, whatever their breed, age or size.
How do I get my dog to love their Kong?
As a professional dog trainer, I often meet dog parents who say their dog isn’t interested in Kongs. This is often because the activity was too tricky. Pet owners read about stuffing and freezing the Kong and go straight to that level but if the dog is not sure how to get the food out they may give up if it is too complex.
If your dog is not initially interested in their Kong toy, there are a few things you can do to encourage them to start chewing. Put a high value dry treat in the Kong and a few kibbles so it’s easy for your dog to get an instant reward for interacting with it.
Make it simple for them because we don’t want our dogs becoming frustrated and associating the Kong with that emotion – give them some quick wins to encourage them and build their confidence. Don’t stuff the Kong full of wet food to begin with because that may be too difficult and your dog could lose heart and give up, and certainly don’t freeze it until your dog is more confident with the Kong.
Letting your dog see you put the Kong filling in can also make the Kong more appealing.
If your dog is still not sure how to use the Kong, try rolling it around on the floor so they can watch it move and make noise, and see the food fall out.
With a little patience and some trial and error, your dog will be a Kong-loving pro in no time.
How do I clean my dog’s Kong?
It is important to clean your dog’s Kong toy on a regular basis. I find the best way to clean a Kong is to put it in the dishwasher. You can also clean it with soap and water. A baby bottle brush can be useful if you are handwashing your Kongs.
However you clean your Kongs, be sure to rinse well so that your dog does not ingest any detergent.
Are there any risks associated with using a Kong dog toy?
While Kong toys are considered to be safe for most dogs, there is always a potential for choking or intestinal blockage if your dog swallows a piece of the toy. It is important to supervise your dog while they are playing with a Kong toy and to remove the toy if it becomes damaged.
Are Kong dog toys indestructible?
Kong dog toys are not indestructible, but they are extremely durable. The Kong Classic is made of red rubber and is fairly hard wearing. The Kong Extreme is made of black rubber and is even more durable. For tough chewers, there is also the Kong Extreme Goodie Bone, which has a hollow center you can fill with treats.
How often should I replace my dog’s Kong?
It is important to inspect your dog’s Kong toy on a regular basis and to replace it if it becomes damaged.
You’ll wonder how you ever managed without Kongs!
Kongs are a great way to keep dogs of all breeds entertained and engaged. By filling them with treats or food, you can create a fun and rewarding activity for your dog.
Kongs are also a great way to help your dog with teething or chewing issues. And, because they are made of durable rubber, unlike plush toys, Kongs can withstand some pretty tough chewers. Just be sure to inspect your dog’s Kong regularly and replace it if it becomes damaged.
Kongs are also a great way to redirect chewing habits away from furniture or other objects in your home. If you are looking for a durable and safe toy for your dog, a Kong is an excellent option.
With a little patience and some trial and error, you and your dog will be Kong-ing in no time!
Check out Kong toys for your dog at Chewy.com and save 35% on your first Autoship Order.