As much as we would love to spend all our free time with our pets, it’s not always practical or
possible, yet, dogs especially need to be kept busy and engaged else they tend to become irritable,
withdrawn and frisky. Since treats are occasional and not everyone has access to large, safe outdoor
spaces that can keep them busy, it’s best to explore new age toys that aren’t just entertainment but
engagement tools too. Here’s a set of toys that can be found at pet stores and online.
1. Lick Mat: as the name suggests, lick mats are made with non-toxic silicon and look like a mini
maze. The idea is to spread healthy foods like mashed banana, yogurt or peanut butter over
the mat and you will find your pet happily busy trying to get into the nooks and grooves of
the mat to get to their favourite treat. In summer, the mat can be frozen with dog friendly
fruit juices or ice cream and they can cool off and have fun for hours on end.
2. Kong: a revolutionary toy when it comes to pet engagement, a kong is mat with heavy duty,
puncture resistant rubber and acts as a vessel to hide your pet’s favourite treat inside it. The
design makes this toy bounce unpredictably in every direction and since it has a hollow
center, it can be stuffed with treats or peanut butter to give dogs an extra playtime
3. Snuffle Mat: ideal for mental stimulation, a Snuffle Mat is basically made with hidden
pockets and engaging textures. Your dog’s curiosity will be peaked at trying to find treats
hidden in the various nooks and corners of the mat. Use dog biscuits or kibble and watch
their sense of smell get used. Made of fleece and washable, this is a great way to keep your
4. Tug-a-Jug: this jar shaped toy ingeniously implements a multisensory function for your dog
with a tugging mechanism introduced as an interactive treat dispenser. Your pet will be able
to see, hear, and smell the treats all in one and have to work at getting to them. This allows
your dog to play and in turn get rewarded too. Made with non-toxic material for maximum
safety, they can spend hours trying to get to their treat.
5. Doggie Twister: made by few brands, the prototype credits go to the one by Nina Ottosson,
called the Outward Hound Dog Twister. Used as a boredom buster, this toy is ideal for
mental exercise and interactive fun. Created as a dog puzzle challenge, it occupies your dog
while they work to unlock tasty treats hidden inside each compartment. Fun for all dogs
regardless of age, size and breed, the Dog Twister is a great way to engage your dog with
rewards at the end.
The best way to keep your furry friend occupied while you’re away or busy is by investing and a few
interactive toys, it will keep their mood upbeat and they will tend to miss you less. These toys are
created with engagement in mind, it will also be a great way for you to play with your dog and watch
them learn and grow.