Free Consultation


Keep Dogs Entertained For Hours With Food-Dispensing Toys

Keep Dogs Entertained For Hours With Food-Dispensing Toys

Unleash the Puzzle-Solving Power of Kongs

Oh kongs, the real MVPs of dog ownership! These magical rubber toys have saved my sanity time and time again. Whether I needed to keep Phoebe occupied during family gatherings or make sure she actually enjoyed her crate time, the kong has been my go-to solution. In fact, I’d venture to say I mention the kong in about 99% of my training sessions. In my opinion, you can hardly ever go wrong with a kong!

But what’s the real lowdown on these household heroes? First off, “kong” is technically a brand of toy, not just the one we’re discussing today. They make all sorts of fetch toys, tough stuffed toys, and even food-dispensing balls. But the classic rubber kong is what most pet parents use and love the most.

There are actually quite a few varieties of the original kong toy. The key is to select the right size and “toughness” for your pup. Too small and it could pose a choking hazard, too large and it might be uncomfortable. Luckily, each kong is clearly labeled with recommended weights and sizes.

The pink and blue kongs are typically for puppies, made of a softer, more pliable rubber. There are also purple kongs for older dogs. The classic red kong was the first on the market, and the black kongs are for serious chewers – made of an extra tough rubber.

Now, let’s talk about the fun part – stuffing! I usually follow a simple pattern: smear the inside with something sticky like peanut butter, then layer in soft and crunchy foods for added texture. Plug the hole with more of the sticky stuff, and stick a long, narrow chew in the middle before freezing the whole thing.

Freezing the stuffed kong is key, as it makes the good stuff last exponentially longer. But it’s important not to jump to this step too quickly, especially if your dog is new to kongs. Start with a partially stuffed, unfrozen kong, then gradually increase the difficulty as your pup gets the hang of it.

My best stuffed kong ever lasted a solid two and a half hours – Regis was absolutely exhausted by the time he finished emptying it! And the best part? I got to enjoy some much-needed peace and quiet while he was happily occupied.

A Smorgasbord of Stuffing Ideas

When it comes to kong fillings, the options are endless. I tend to lean towards “human foods” since, as long as they’re safe for dogs, they’re usually healthier and more appealing than plain old kibble. Some of my go-to ingredients include:

  • Peanut butter (sans xylitol)
  • Pureed pumpkin
  • Unsweetened applesauce
  • Plain Greek yogurt
  • Mashed sweet potatoes
  • Cooked oatmeal
  • Shredded chicken or beef
  • Freeze-dried treats

And for the hole-plugging chewies, I love things like bully sticks, dehydrated fish skins, and big, crunchy cookie-style treats.

The beauty of stuffed kongs is that you can prepare several at once and have a veritable frozen feast in your freezer. That way, you’ll always have something to keep your pup happily occupied, no matter when the mischief strikes.

Mixing Up the Mental Enrichment

Of course, kongs aren’t the only game in town when it comes to food-dispensing toys. There’s a whole world of puzzle feeders and interactive toys to explore, each offering a unique mental challenge for your canine companion.

One of my personal favorites is the Tricky Treat Ball – a sturdy toy with a lip inside that prevents the food from falling out all at once. Oats loved tossing this one around to get her kibble, and it kept her entertained for ages.

The Genius toys, like the Michaelangelo and Leonardo, offer a different type of challenge. Their unique shapes and mechanisms mean your pup has to get creative to extract the tasty rewards. And the Wobbler or Bob-A-Lot are great for dogs who love to tip, nudge, and flip their way to dinner.

No matter which toys you choose, the key is to mix things up and keep your dog’s brain engaged. After all, a tired dog is a happy dog – and a dog who’s happily working for their meal is a whole lot less likely to get into mischief around the house.

So ditch the boring old food bowls, my friends, and let the puzzle-solving begin! Your dog’s mental well-being (and your own sanity) will thank you.

Tags :
Share This :

Get Updates with our



Join our passionate community of dog lovers. Embrace the journey of companionship with Ihavedogs, where every dog gets the best of care and love.