Some dogs can have the same toys for years, being gentle and careful not to destroy one of their favorite things. Other dogs… well, let’s just say most toys don’t stand a chance. While we love seeing our dogs enjoy themselves regardless of how they play, there’s a scary truth that some toys become downright dangerous when destroyed. From stuffing to squeakers to large pieces of plastic – there’s a lot that can happen when you hand your pet a new plaything. Here are a few quick tips on how to be as safe as possible with new toys.
- Remember: you get what you pay for. Invest in quality toys from brands that you trust. Cheap toys not only fall apart faster but the materials can be harmful in the event of accidental ingestion. Look for labels that boast non-toxic plastics and durability.
- Be present. Of course you don’t have to constantly hover over your pet while they play but it’s best to stay close if you’re trying out a new toy. If it starts to fall apart it’s time to toss it.
- Stuffing isn’t safe. While it seems completely non-threatening, the stuffing in toys can actually present big problems when eaten because it can wrap around or get stuck in the intestines. If your pet gets to the insides of a stuffed toy, do your best to take all the stuffing out before giving it back – not only are you avoiding an expensive surgery, you could save your pet’s life. (Pro-Tip: Lots of companies have wised up and sell soft toys sans stuffing, a great option if your pet’s a toy destroyer!)
- Know what to do. If your pet starts choking, it’s important to know what to do. PetMD has an informative how-to, but we always suggest talking with your veterinarian so you can get an in-person demonstration and ask any questions that may arise.