Why Do Dogs Like Squeaky Toys?

black and white short coated dog on brown bear plush toy

Dogs love playing with their person. But when you are busy, there are some toys that you can give your dog to help keep them entertained. Interactive toys include those that are used to play fetch and tug, while toys that dogs can play with alone fall into the chewing and squeaky categories. While fetch, tug and chewing toys intuitively seem fun for a dog, why do dogs like squeaky toys so much?

Squeaky Toys and your Dog’s ancestors

Generally, dogs like toys that simulate prey. Dogs are hunting animals descended from wolves, and they like the “squeaking” sounds that mimic prey. In fact, dogs like squeaky toys because the sound of the squeak as they bite down on these toys activates the pleasure center of your dog’s brain. They keep biting the toy to create the squeaking sound in order to experience that pleasurable feeling again and again. The texture, sound, and chewiness all add up to a fun toy that keeps your dog physically and mentally active.  

Do All Dogs Like Toys With Squeakers?

Not all dogs get a thrill from squeaky toys, just like all cats don’t like playing with string. Hunting dogs like Golden Retrievers, Beagles, American Foxhounds, Pointers, Hounds, Weimaraners, English Setters, Irish Setters are more likely to enjoy squeaky toys. You shouldn’t worry if your dog does not like squeaking toys – most dog owners would be grateful!

Are Squeaky Toys Safe For Dogs?

Yes, squeaky toys are great for dogs as they aid in maintaining the dental health of the dogs. As the dog’s prey instincts focus on the squeaky toys while playing with them, undesirable habits like howling, digging, and preying, will also be reduced. However, you should be mindful if your dog has any injuries or is allergic to any materials in the squeaky toy you provide them.

Are Squeaky Toys Bad For Dogs?

The stuffed plastic squeakers inside the squeaky toys are bad for dogs. Keep an eye on your dog while they are playing and inspect the toy for any rips. These plastics and toy parts could be dangerous and might also need surgery if your dog swallowed them. The only time you should be concerned about your dog is if you notice a sudden change in its behavior after playing with Squeaky Toys. For instance, if your dog has been passionately enjoying his squeaky toy all day and then suddenly becomes disinterested and lazy, keep an eye on him. If your dog doesn’t return to its usual self after a day or so or seems lethargic, it is advisable to contact your vet.

How To Choose The Best Squeaky Toy For Your Dog

Almost every possible shape and size of a dog toy comes in a version with a “squeaker.” The most popular squeaky toys are plush toys that are stuffed animals embedded with squeakers that are easy to squeak, even for small dogs – be cautious that your pup doesn’t pull the stuffing apart and get the plastic squeaker out of the toy. 

For large or especially rough-playing dogs, squeaky balls, or rubber toys usually make a better option. Thick rubber squeaky toys tend to hold up best, and are most suited to heavy chewers. Plastic squeakers or Thinner vinyl are easy to clean and more durable than plush toys. However, they will have to be replaced with a new one once their outer part is punctured, as they may become a choking hazard.   

Best Squeaky Toys

For the best squeaky toys, please check out:

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