11 Best Interactive Dog Toys: Your Buyer’s Guide (2018)

Dogs need things to do. They crave things to do. If your dog has a bad habit of chewing things they shouldn’t chew, they may need a hobby. One way to deal with a hyperactive dog is taking them on a nice long walk each day to help them use up their energy. Another way is to get them a toy, or two, that makes them think.

Interactive toys like puzzles that force them to move things to find treats are great for keeping any dog busy. While there are plenty of toys designed expressly to dispense treats (like the ones we covered in this post), there’s more to interactivity than that. Your dog wants a bit of a game — be it fetch, tug, or a few moving pieces to nose around.

While it’s true that treat-bearing puzzles are the most popular of the interactive dog toy genre, we’ve included a few options on this list to get their bodies moving, too. Most of these only require you to set them up and let them play, but a couple ask that you join in the fun, too. Besides, be honest: wasn’t one of the reasons you got a dog to move around more? Still, that shouldn’t be a strict requirement for a variety of reasons, and we recommend having a few of these in rotation to keep things interesting. Some travel better than others, too.

If you’re ready to give your pooch a good challenge, here some of the best interactive dog toys to keep them busy:

What are the best interactive dog toys?


1. Nina Ottosson DogCasino – $47.79

nina ottoson interactive dog toy

Nina Ottoson

Pros: Cons:
  • Fun and interactive
  • Great teaching tool
  • Lots of little parts to clean
  • Somewhat basic game your dog may figure out quickly

Puzzle toys can be great ways to keep your bored dog busy. My dog loves this type of toy. He enjoys removing the pieces in order to find the treats hidden within. The first time he played he attempted to lift and tip the whole thing to get to the treats. He quickly figured it out though and now it’s our party trick when new people come to visit. This toy is made from durable material and is easy to wash. Nina Ottoson makes a variety of interesting dog challenges you can find here.

Buy the Nina Ottosson DogCasino here.


2. Wobble Wag Giggle Ball – $9.99

wobble wag giggle ball interactive dog toy

Wobble Wag

Pros: Cons:
  • Dogs love it
  • Dispenses treats
  • Can get noisy

This ‘As Seen On TV’ toy is something that really attracts the dogs. It rolls, it bounces, it wiggles, it makes noise and it even dispenses treats. My dog had one of these and LOVED it (however, we humans got tired of hearing it). This is a fun toy and pretty much any dog would love it. It even stands up well to rougher players.

Buy the Wobble Wag Giggle Ball here.


3. Dogit Mind Games 3-in-1 Interactive Smart Toy for Dogs – $12.74

dogit mind games interactive dog toy

DogIt

Pros: Cons:
  • 3-in-1 design provides value
  • Suction grip keeps toy in place
  • May not be challenging enough
  • Not especially durable

This is another puzzle toy that can help with teaching and keep a bored dog busy. The three different activities include: hide-and-seek where your dog has to dislodge tops in order to find a treat; spin-a-whirl where your dog nudges wheel around the game board to reveal treats; and sliding puzzle which lets your dog move the pieces around to find the rewards.

Buy the Dogit Mind Games 3-in-1 Interactive Smart Toy for Dogs here.


4. Trixie Pet Products Windmill – $21.99

trixie pet windmill interactive dog toy

Trixie Pet

Pros: Cons:
  • Level 1 is easy for your dog to learn
  • Comes with instructions
  • May not be the best for a rough dog

Trixie Pet Products has many different interactive dog toys, at varying levels. Start with an easy level one toy, like this one. Once your dog masters spinning the windmill and dispensing the treats it will be time to look into upgrading to the next level. While it may look confusing, this toy does come with an instruction booklet.

Using the same general idea, there’s now a Mad Scientist set you could try.

Buy the Trixie Pet Products Windmill here.


5. Tether Tug Dog – $49.99 to $78.99

tether tug interactive dog toy

Tether Tug

Pros: Cons:
  • Made in the U.S.A.
  • Comes in 4 sizes
  • Only good for the outdoors

While this toy may not make your dog use his awesome skills to find a treat within a puzzle, it still offers your pooch something fun to keep him busy. If you’re a single dog owner you may get tired of always playing tug with your dog, so why not get this great interactive tug toy that lets your dog play alone (without pulling your arm out of the socket). Durable toy and comes in four different sizes, from puppy to XL.

Buy the Tether Tug Dog here.


6. Chuckit! Launcher – $5.39

chuck it interactive dog toy

Canine Hardware

Pros: Cons:
  • Classic fetch toy
  • Easy to use
  • Provides hours of entertainment
  • Requires just as much activity from the owner
  • Won’t be much good for dogs that don’t like fetch
  • Will only work in big yards and at the park

With a variety of lengths and colors to choose from, the Chuckit! is an excellent, tried-and-true interactive dog toy. It eliminated the need to pick up a slobbery ball while drastically increasing the range of your throw without adding any stress to your arm. When this thing came on the scene, it changed the fetch game forever. My sister-in-law’s dog never, ever tires of a game of fetch and has made excellent use of this toy for years now.

There are number of dog-specific tennis ball brands out there — Tuff Balls, Kong, and even Chuckit’s own — but any old tennis ball will do the trick.

Buy the Chuckit! Launcher here.


7. iFetch Too Interactive Ball Thrower – $199.99

ifetch too interactive dog toy

iFetch

Pros: Cons:
  • Adjustable launch distance
  • Good for folks with joint pain
  • Solid customer service
  • Expensive
  • Some reviewers say it won’t launch wet balls

If you’ve worn your arm out using the launcher above, this is the other game changer for fetch. This automatic ball launcher features three distances (10, 25, and 40 feet) and runs on an internal rechargeable battery. Dogs can drop the ball back into the top and keep the game going until they run out of steam.

The Too fires standard tennis balls, and three are included in the package. iFetch makes different sizes that shoot different balls, as well. There are a number of other makers on the market, including PetSafe, which makes a slightly cheaper model.

Buy the iFetch Too Interactive Ball Thrower here.


8. Trixie Pet Products Mover Toy – $16.99

trixie pet interactive dog toy

Trixie Pet

Pros: Cons:
  • Level three puzzle for clever dogs
  • Includes four different games
  • Non-slip feet keep game in place while your dog plays
  • May still be too easy
  • Feet on some units may be faulty

If the Trixie windmill above it too easy for your dog, try this level three puzzle toy to keep them guessing. Game one requires the dog to lift cones straight up. Game two makes dogs pull open drawers using rope handles. Game three requires your dog to push a slider to reveal the treat. The fourth game is pushing a knob to open another drawer.

Other level three toys from Trixie include chess and move-2-win.

Buy the Trixie Pet Products Mover Toy here.


9. ZippyPaws Burrow Squeaky Hide and Seek Plush Dog Toy – $8.82

zippy paws interactive dog toy

ZippyPaws

Pros: Cons:
  • Great for smaller dogs
  • Easy hide-and-seek concept
  • Limited challenge

If you have a small dog that loves to chase small creatures, this hide-and-seek hedgehog den is an excellent choice for the best interactive dog toy. Just put the little critters inside and your dog will fish them out of the two holes. Comes in three varieties — hedgehog, mice and cheese, and chicken hut.

There’s also an Outward Hound variant of this toy, if you prefer.

Buy the ZippyPaws Burrow Squeaky Hide and Seek Plush Dog Toy here.


10. Spot Ethical Pet Interactive Seek-A-Treat Shuffle Bone Toy – $14.99

ethical pet interactive dog toy

Ethical Pet

Pros: Cons:
  • Durable wooden construction
  • Simple to setup for added stimulation
  • Not the most complicated puzzle
  • Destructive dogs likely to tear off the sliders

If you want a simple challenge that will give your dog something to do for a few minutes each day, consider this toy. It’s quick and easy to setup, with little cups for treats, which are then covered with circular sliders. Your dog can move the sliders around to uncover more treats. Especially good for the first few minutes after being put into a crate when you’re on the way out the door, for example.

There’s also a version with a flip-up door.

Buy the Spot Ethical Pet Interactive Seek-A-Treat Shuffle Bone Toy here.


11. Pet Rageous Thinkrageous Interactive Advanced Level Puzzle Pet Toy – $17.68

petrageous interactive dog toy

Pet Rageous

Pros: Cons:
  • Deceptively tricky toy
  • Easy to set up
  • Somewhat difficult to clean
  • Particle board may yield to aggressive chewers

Based on a similar concept to the one above, this interactive dog toy ups the ante by locking out some of the sliders depending on the position of the centerpiece. Your dog will likely figure out the first couple pretty quickly, but getting to the last ones is where the real challenge kicks in. A pretty straightforward puzzle, but enough for keeping your dog occupied for awhile.

Buy the Pet Rageous Thinkrageous Interactive Advanced Level Puzzle Pet Toy here.


See Also:


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2 Comments

2 Comments

Amy

Nina Ottosson DogTwister is a very good toy.All the toys listed above are wonderful,but my dog just loved this one.They have variety of toys.

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