German Shepherds (GSDs) are an outstanding dog breed. They are exceptionally notable for their intelligence and high-energy drives. Their high intelligence makes them curious, and they are always looking to learn something new – and are easy to train.
GSDs need somewhere to channel their extra built-up energy. They can’t help themselves and will look for anything to do – including playing around the house while making a mess. Their energy buildup can also make them aggressive.
Dog toys are a fun and creative way to keep your GSD active, excited, and occupied. Toys for German shepherds come in different shapes and sizes and feature varying creative designs.
Here is an overview of the ten best toys for German Shepherds.
Best Toys for German Shepherds
1. Kong Classic
Kong has been making doggie toys for decades now, and the Kong Classic is one of the company’s best products. It is primarily designed for dogs that like chewing but can serve several other purposes. If your dog is a tough chewer, go for the Kong Extreme.
Kong is mainly a chewing toy. It has an unusual but practical shape that enables the dog to bite down on it without slipping. More importantly, it is made of soft natural rubber that will soothe and sharpen the German shepherd puppy teeth. The rubber is also durable – it’s virtually indestructible, regardless of the dog’s bite strength.
The Kong Classic also makes for a fun playing tool. Its shape and design make it bounce around when dropping, moving from one place to another erratically.
This erratic bouncing dog toy excites German shepherds and keeps them busy as they try to catch the rubber blob. This toy also features a cavity inside where you can stuff treats like peanut butter – the treats slide out as the dog chews.
The Kong Classic comes in varying sizes, depending on the dog’s overall weight and size.
2. Kong Puppy Tire
Kong makes some of the best toys for German Shepherd puppies. This particular toy is designed for puppies who are teething – or just looking to chew on something as they have fun.
The Kong Puppy Tire uses soft and malleable natural rubber that is gentle on puppies’ sensitive teeth and gums. It is also phthalate free.
The outer rubber is also textured to soothe the German shepherd puppies’ gums, which comes in handy when teething. Additionally, the inner layer features a space designed for staffing snacks and treats. The treats inside slide out as the puppy chew on the tire, acting as an incentive and reward.
This toy’s main purpose is to give German shepherd puppies something to chew. However, it is a fetch toy and can also be used for interactive play outside, as it is easy to throw and retrieve.
It comes in various sizes, including small, medium, and large, for large dogs and puppies in different growth stages. They also come in varying colors – experts recommend blue, which is easier for the puppies to see.
3. Nina Ottoson Dog Brick Treat Puzzle
German Shepherds rank among the most intelligent dogs. This is why they are popular for law enforcement, rescue operations, and other tasks that require an intelligent canine. These dogs are usually trained to help them learn, and puzzle toys play a big role in training.
This puzzle dog toy by Outward Hound is designed to harness your German shepherd’s sense of smell and problem-solving skills. It features nine removable caps covering compartments containing treats.
The idea is to fill some of the compartments with treats and then close all of them. The dog will then try to sniff out the compartments containing the treats and figure out how to remove the caps. It is advisable to elevate the caps partially during the first few trials to help your German shepherd learn the game.
This puzzle toy is ideal for dogs of all ages, inquisitive puppies, as they are easier to train. It is also washable and durable. Unfortunately, it isn’t dishwasher safe.
4. Tether Tug
German Shepherds have a lot of energy, and playing tug is one of the best ways to get them to expel this energy. It exercises their muscles and helps them calm their aggression.
It also helps to soothe their gums and sharpen their teeth. However, playing tug with your German shepherds can be exhausting. Fortunately, this dog toy enables your furry friend to play tug by himself.
The Tether Tug is among rope toys that feature a flexible rope and portable pole. The pole can be rooted into the ground, functioning as a tether.
Your German shepherd can then go wild, pulling at the rope as far as possible, as it will snap back into place. The rope also rotates 360 degrees, giving your dog as much space as they need to exercise its strength.
This tug toy is ideal for dogs of all ages and sizes. The rope’s flexibility enables the dog (or puppy) to pull to the best of its ability.
5. Chuckit! Ball Sport Launcher
Running helps exercise your German Shepherds, expelling built-up energy and strengthening their joints and muscles. Playing fetch is a fun way to get your GSD to run and get mental stimulation.
However, it can take up a lot of time and strain your arm. Fortunately, you don’t have to lift a finger when using the Chuckit! Ball Sport Launcher.
This toy is designed to launch balls easily, as often as the dog wants to play a game of fetch. It launches the balls to varying distances, depending on your dog’s enthusiasm.
You will have to reload the ball once in a while. However, the hands-free pickup feature protects you from touching the slobber.
6. Outward Hound Plush Hide & Seek Puzzle
This puzzle toy is one of the best dog toys thanks to its versatility. It’s designed to help sharpen your dog’s problem-solving skills while also creating a fun adventure.
This great toy includes a rubber tree trunk and rubber squirrels. The squirrels are stuffed into the tree trunk, which is then tossed somewhere for your dog to find.
Finding the log is only one part of the puzzle (and adventure) – the dogs also have to figure out how to remove the rubber squirrels stuffed inside. Retrieving the squirrels is tricky, but the dogs can learn it given some time for hours of fun.
Outward Hound Plush toy also comes in other shapes and designs. These include a beehive with bees, hedgehogs in a log, and birds in a birdhouse. You can also use the rubber squirrels and hedgehogs during playtime.
7. Nero Ball Classic Ball On A Rope
Nero Ball Classic Ball On A Rope is versatile and offers lots of constructive fun, making it one of the most suitable toys for German shepherds. This dog toy is essentially a ball tethered to a rope. You can throw the ball as far as you want for your dog to fetch.
You can initiate a tug of war when the dog bites on the ball, which is especially popular with police and military German Shepherds. What’s more, you can tie the rope to a pole and leave the dog to play tug by himself.
The ball is also excellent for aggressive chewers. However, it is advisable to detach the ball from the rope when your dog wants to chew on it, as fibers from the rope can come loose. It’s also advisable to replace the rope when it starts wearing out.
8. Kong Cozies Dog Squeaky Toy
This adorable toy is one of the best toys for your German shepherd puppies. It offers dogs, especially a German shepherd puppy, the sense of loving and comfort that they crave so much.
This toy is made of soft and plush material, which feels smooth on the dog’s fur. This makes it ideal for puppies to lie on, and the soothing feeling makes them feel all fuzzy inside.
It’s also fun. Puppies will often jump all over it, trying to get to the top, only to fall back down.
Kong Cozies Squeaky toy is among the best toys for German Shepherd dogs of all ages and sizes. However, adult dogs will mostly use it for comfort.
9. Dog Flirt Pole
German Shepherds are great at chasing and finding things. However, they need some training, and this Dog Flirt Pole toy by JT Pet is even better for the task.
The cord can then be attached to accessories designed to look like the end of a tail. You can then yank the pole around and run with it as the dog chases the tail.
It’s a great way to exercise, and your dog will have a lot of fun following you around. It’s also an excellent way to get you to exercise as you move around, trying to set the pace for your fluffy friend.
Safety Tips to Consider When Buying A Toy for Your German Shepherd
There are many toys available, and many are made in the USA. That includes rope toys, chew toys, and bone shaped toys. Dogs love toys because they are intriguing and fun to play with. The toys mentioned above are top picks for many fur parents.
Still, it’s crucial to observe safety tips before taking a chew toy home. Take a look at these tips to find the best toys for German shepherds:
Always buy long lasting toys. Those made from hard rubber or nylon are the best toys for German shepherds. Since GSDs are aggressive chewers, they can break apart most weak materials. If you notice a tear or break on a chew toy, dispose of it even if it didn’t last a long time.
GSDs are huge dogs. So, you should buy them large size toys to prevent them from choking on them. Chew toys, in particular, must be relatively big to fit in the dog’s mouth and help with their teeth and gums.
You can find a chew toys in different sizes, but always remember how big or small your furry GSD is.
The Toy’s Make
A chew toy might be the appropriate size and material for heavy chewers, but be hazardous to your pet. For instance, some toy manufacturers add chemicals to make toys softer and more flexible. When shopping for a chew toy for your German Shepherd, ensure it is phthalate free by reading the label.
The Chew Capacity
Some manufacturers design their toys to dissolve once they enter the dog’s mouth. GSDs are heavy chewers. As such, they can easily get choked on treats in the chew toy, especially those with peanut butter, because they love it. So, choose the shape and size of the edible chew toy carefully or always ensure you’re around when your pet is chewing away.
Toys That You Should Keep Away From Your Dog
When you enter a toy store, you’re more likely to get distracted by the cute toys they have on display. Manufacturers make pet toys as interesting and visually appealing as possible, but that makes it harder for fur parents to choose.
Although you can imagine your GSD having a lot of fun with a toy, you must ensure it’s safe to take home. According to experts, you should steer clear of these toys:
- Extremely hard toys
- Foam stuffed toys
- Thin, long strips or ribbon and yarn
- Toys with pins, batteries, or springs
- Bones, pig ears, or antlers
If you’re asking, “what’s the worst that could happen?” then you should be ready to call your veterinarian after your pet chews on any of these toys. Firstly, your dog could choke. However, if the toy or its parts get into the stomach, surgery is the only solution. Unsuitable toys can also cause cuts and scrapes or splinter your pet’s mouth.
One of the biggest aspects of maintaining a German Shepherd is keeping it active. Of course, it will find a way to stay active, even if it means making a mess around the house or chewing on its tail.
However, you can give your furry friend a fun alternative to have hours of fun and stay active by getting them one or more of these non-toxic toys. You’ll certainly enjoy playing tug of war or games of fetch with your furry friend.
These best toys for German Shepherds serve a wide range of purposes, including chewing, fetching, tugging, and exercising the dog’s problem-solving skills. They are also ideal for both puppies and adult dogs.
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