Nix’s Current Toys

Nix's toys

Today I thought I’d talk about Nix’s toys and how her interest in them has evolved over time. It may be useful to anyone wondering what toys to get for their new dog or guess which ones would be more appropriate according to their dog’s personality.

How did we start?

When Nix came home, she had the following toys ready for her:

  • Classic Kong, puppy version, by Kong (pictured above)
  • Coloured spiked ball, by Nayeco (pictured above)
  • Hamburger squeaking toy (now lost)
  • Plastic frisbee
  • Leather chew bone (pictured above)

Nix’s impression of her toys:

Early on, the only thing that really liked was the leather chew bone. She didn’t care at all about the Kong, and the spiked ball and the hamburger only mildly raised her interest. We didn’t have much occasion to play with the frisbee, and we left it at my parent’s where there is more space play.

Currently I use the spiked ball to play fetch with her at the park, and she loves it. The advantage of the spikes is that, in my opinion, she cannot hold the ball as tight as she would if they weren’t there, and therefore it is easier to retrieve it from her mouth. It’s been holding up really well. Oh, and it also squeaks, which I think it’s a nice bonus for her.

I also feel that she likes the Kong better now, as I’ve filled it with her food multiple times. She doesn’t usually play with it, although I’ve seen her carrying around one or two times. To read more about the Kong and our experience with it, check this post.

Nix’s next toys

As she didn’t seem to be very interested in her toys early on, we tried looking for other alternatives. We noticed that she seemed to like Puc’s rope and we thought that she also needed a softer toy to chew than what she had at the time (she still had her baby/puppy teeth). In addition, we also found out that Nix really liked tug-of-war games. We initially played with a couple of old rags, but after a few days they were so torn that they were no longer usable.

Therefore, we got the following toys (all are pictured above):

  • Squeaking cow, by Nayeco
  • Chewing/Pulling rope with knots
  • Training dummy, by Karlie

Nix’s impression of her toys:

The squeaking cow was a great addition. It was pretty soft but made of a plastic-like material that didn’t break easily. She didn’t enjoy chewing the Kong, but the cow proved of great service especially during the times that she was changing her teeth. However, she no longer plays with it.

The chewing/pulling rope wasn’t so great as the cow.  She did play with it, but not as much. Nowadays she needs to be encouraged to play with it most of the time. Still, it’s good way of playing tug-of-war with her. However, be aware that the threads get loose and they could be dangerous if swallowed.

The training dummy is great. She loves it. Theoretically, it is very resitant and made of a material similar to firefighters’ hoses. In practice, it would have been destroyed by now if we let her full-time access to it. If you look at the picture above, you’ll see that it’s not torn or broken, but that it is full of teeth marks. Manel uses it to play tug-of-war with her at the park, and sometimes at home when it rains.

The AirDog Toys

The next toys we got her were similar to tennis balls, as we noticed she really enjoyed playing with some that were in the garden at my parents’. For this reason, we got her the following:

  • Squeakair balls, by Kong (pictured above)
  • Dumbbell, by Kong (see below)
Nix and the dumbbell
Nix chewing the dumbbell.

Nix’s impression of her toys:

Nix really loved the Squeakair balls (they come in packs of twos and threes); I think it’s her favourite toy. Unfortuntely, they are not appropriate for continuous chewing as they break easily. See our review for more details.

Seeing how much she enjoyed the Squeakair balls, we wanted to get her a similar toy for home-use only, to avoid getting the house dirtier with the balls. However, we wanted it to be more resistant. In the end, we chose the Kong Airdog Dumbbell. She doesn’t like it as much as the Squeakair balls, but she also enjoys chewing it and shaking it as if it was a prey. However, it is not very resistant: it stopped squeaking on the first week and some of the fabric that covers it is torn, but it’s still usable.

Special Mention

Finally, I would like to mention that she also loves playing with empty plastic bottles. They make noise, they can be chewed, and they slip and move around on the floor while she plays with them. Most of the time, the toys they love more are the ones that are not specifically toys.

In any case, I think that you should be careful when you let them have plastic bottles to play with. The one pictured above broke and depending on the type of plastic, the remaining pieces can be sharp and could potentially hurt your dog.

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