Having a tiny dog is fun but comes with unique challenges, such as finding toys minuscule enough for their tiny mouths. Here is a compilation of the best tiny dog toys I have been able to find, and some tips to keep your small furry friend safely entertained.
Best Toys for Tiny Dogs-Like Chihuahuas!
No matter what your tiny dog’s toy preference is, you will probably find something that he or she will like in this paragraph:
- Kong makes tiny plush toys with velcro backs that allow you to easily replace squeakers as they wear out. Choose from a teddy bear, frog, or duck.
- If your tiny dog tears up plushes quickly, consider the Kong Wild Knots Bear toy; stuffed with a rope rather than stuffing, or the KONG Ballistic Vibez Llamas which is made with more durable fabric.
- For tiny dogs who enjoy rubber textured toys, the Charming Pet Balloon Lion Squeaky Latex Dog Toy might be their new favorite. Note that this toy is not recommended for heavy chewers.
- These tiny Nylabone FlexiChews are ideal for low to moderate chewers.
- The Nylabone Double Bone Power Chew is recommended for heavy chewers. Most dogs enjoy the varied textures and the bacon flavor that this bone features.
- The most durable ball toy for tiny dogs I have found to date is the Planet Dog Raspberry ball. One of my readers actually told me that her mini Aussie, Piper, who is obsessed with balls got years of use out of this toy. She only had to buy a new one when Piper stuck her face between the slats of their deck and dropped the ball in the woods when she opened her mouth to bark!
- The West Paw Zogoflex Jive Ball is great for dogs who enjoy playing catch or fetch. They also float in water, a bonus for dogs who have an affinity for water.
- Tiny dogs need tennis balls too! Kong provides squeaky tennis balls for tiny mouths in packs of 3.
- You can also get a 6 pack of 1.5 inch squeaker balls here.
Best Chew Toys For Tiny Puppies
Puppies need chew toys to help with teething. If they are not given appropriate chew toys, the discomfort of their new teeth coming in will cause them to find whatever they can to chew on, whether that be something that you do not want them chewing on, or something that is unsafe. Make appropriate chew options readily available for your puppy, such as:
- The Nylabone Double Bone Power Chew is ideal for heavy chewers; the different textures may provide teething relief, and because it is hard plastic, puppies and dogs cannot chew off pieces that could cause internal blockages. If your puppy consumes rice-sized pieces of this bone they can pass them safely.
- The Nylabone Puppy Key toy is excellent for teething puppies. It can be put in the fridge or freezer to offer extra relief for sore gums.
- The Nylabone FlexiChew Triple Packs is a favorite of most puppies, however, supervision is required. The rubber is soft enough for some determined chewers to chew off chunks that may be swallowed and may be large enough to cause an internal blockage.
- The KONG Puppy Teething Stick Dog Toy is fantastic for puppies. It has ridges which cleans their teeth and soothes their gums.
Toys For Small Dogs To Keep Them Busy
The best toys to keep dogs busy create a challenge, which is created using a puzzle toy. The most popular puzzle toys are:
Hide and Seek
Hide and Seek puzzle toys are excellent for tiny dogs because the hiding toys are usually the perfect size for their mini mouths. Simply stuff the hiding toys inside the larger toy and your dog will want to pull them out instinctively; most dogs do not need coaching to do this. Some dogs do this so quickly that you will need to be ready to put the mini toys back inside quickly for them to play again! Here are some good hide and seek toy choices:
- Retro Waffle Box with Strawberries
- Crayons Hide and Seek Toy
- Monkey Tree Hide and Seek Toy
- Raccoons and Trash Can Hide and Seek Toy
- This Toy Story Claw and Aliens hide and seek toy is perfect for fans of Toy Story; your dog can run around playing with an alien just like the dog Spike in the movie!
Is your dog food motivated? Then using a food puzzle is a guaranteed way to make him or her find the motivation to solve a puzzle with no encouragement from you. Make meal time more interesting by using a puzzle feeder or putting your dog’s meal into a puzzle toy:
- Ethical Pet Seek-A-Treat Flip N Slide Puzzle Dog Toy
- Ethical Pet Seek-A-Treat Shuffle Bone Puzzle Dog Toy
- The Busy Buddy Bristle Bone Treat Dispenser offers non-edible chewing surfaces and edible parts that may be chewed off by determined dogs.
- Waffle Food Dispensing Toy
- The Planet Dog Raspberry ball has a small hole that allows owners to stuff it with tiny pieces of treats. This ball is very durable!
Kongs For Small Dogs
Kong is known as a company for making tough toys, so you might assume they cater to larger breeds. However, Kong is actually one of the best brands when it comes to making tiny toys. Many people think of the classic kong toy, but the company has expanded to many toy options:
The KONG Classic Dog Toy can be stuffed with treats, the shape of which creates a challenge to obtain the treats. For dogs who work quickly, it may be frozen to increase the challenge. The classic red color is regular strength rubber, the light blue or light pink puppy rubber is a bit softer, the purple color is designed for seniors, and the black color is called the extreme, designed to be the toughest for heavy chewers.
I recommend brighter colors to help you find Kongs more quickly if your dog decides to hide them around the house like Easter eggs, as many do. After all, you never know when your kong might be full of treats, so it makes sense to leave one in each room to check on throughout your day!
Plush and Other Toys
Kong expanded their market to include unique plush toys, balls and assorted rubber toys:
- Squeaky Tennis Balls
- Dotz Square
- Dotz Triangle
- Comfort Kiddos Plush Elephant
- Phatz Hippo
- Low Stuffing, Simple to Replace Squeaker Plushes: Teddy Bear, Frog and Duck
- Wild Knots Bear
- Wubba Bug
- Wubba Finz
- Goodie Bones
- Squeezz Confetti Ball
Safest Dog Toys For Small Dogs
Keep in mind that the safest way for your dog to play with toys is under your supervision. However, there are times when a toy is needed to keep your dog occupied when you are not there, such as in their crate. There is truly only one option I am comfortable recommending in that situation: the KONG Classic.
The classic style Kong is the safest option because it is thick and tough with no small pieces to be chewed off. It can be filled with treats, frozen to make the treats harder to get out, and is even dishwasher safe to save you from scrubbing dog safe peanut butter off the inside.
Toy Safety Tips
While dogs need toys, toys can pose a choking or internal blockage risk if a dog is given an unsafe toy. To keep your dog safely entertained, consider these tips:
- Never allow your dog to play with a toy or any other item that is small enough to be swallowed.
- Always supervise your dog when he or she is playing with plush toys, thin and soft rubber toys or toys with pieces that may be broken off.
- If your dog likes to de-stuff plush toys, promptly confiscate all stuffing; do not allow your dog to consume the stuffing.
- Check your dog’s toys regularly for wear and tear. If any pieces small enough to be swallowed are starting to become loose, trim off the pieces before allowing your dog to continue playing with the toy. If the pieces cannot be trimmed off without making the toy itself too small to safely play with, the toy needs to be discarded.
- The only toy that is safe to leave a dog unsupervised with is a KONG if the toy is appropriately selected. It must be the right size for their weight and mouth.
- When giving your dog a hard chew toy, if the toy is hard enough that you cannot leave marks with your fingernails, it may pose the risk of breaking a tooth.
- Be sure to consult with a trusted veterinarian regarding any toys that you are unsure about giving to your dog before offering them.
Though it may require an online order rather than a trip to the store, there are many toy options for tiny dogs. Be sure to carefully select and regularly inspect your tiny dog’s toys to ensure they are entertained safely. If you are unsure if a toy is safe, consult with a trusted veterinarian.
What is your tiny dog’s favorite toy? Share in the comments!