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Give your dog a mental workout with puzzle toys

Posted by Five Barking Dogs! on 6/21/2017
Give your dog a mental workout with puzzle toys
Give your dog a mental workout with puzzle toys

Dogs, like humans, can get bored. They have very active minds and crave stimulation. They also have a sense of accomplishment, which you can see in the pride they display when praised. There's another side to this too— if a dog doesn't have enough to do, he or she will invent something, and it may not be something you like! Dogs who chew furniture, tear things apart, or exhibit other destructive behaviors are often simply looking for something to do that feels rewarding. Boredom can also lead to depression, especially when the dog's own means of seeking stimulation is forbidden. For dogs, especially very smart ones, mental activity is just as important as physical! 

There are plenty of healthy and fun ways to help your dog burn off mental energy and engage his or her brilliant mind. Puzzle toys are one of the best. The idea behind Puzzle toys is that the dog must figure out the toy and will be rewarded for doing so, whether with treats, food, or even other toys. Since the toy itself contains the reward, your dog will feel an enhanced sense of achievement that will encourage him or her to continue investigating new challenges. This type of mental enrichment helps keep dogs happy and alert and trains their IQ.
The Odin Treat Puzzle is one such mentally-enriching toy. This sturdy plastic polyhedron holds many treats or up to a cup of food. Your dog will need to roll it around, toss it, knock it across the floor, pick it up and shake it and more, all in a quest to get those tasty treats to fall out! It doesn't have to stop at treats; since it holds so much food, you can use it for your dog's mealtimes, too. Dogs who eat too fast can especially benefit from needing to work for their meal.

If your dog figures out the Odin too quickly, or you want to feed a larger dog with it, you can attach multiple Odins together to create an even larger and more complex puzzle. Enjoy watching your dog solve the problem of how to make those treats or kibbles appear from deep within the maze. It's a mental exercise for your buddy, and great entertainment for you!

The Odin Treat Puzzle comes in Slate Grey, Rose Quartz, and Deep Mint colors and can be cleaned with soap and water. They come in one size that is intended to be small enough for small dogs, but large enough to be safe for bigger dogs too. And don't forget you can attach a few together!

For a non-food-related reward, try giving your dog one of the DIG-iT plush puzzle toys, like the DIG-iT Fire Hydrant, Mailbox, or Recycling Bin. These soft plush toys each come with three squeaky plush bones that you can stuff inside. Dogs love to play with these toys and can't resist figuring out how to remove those squeaky bones!
DIG-iT toys are about 6 inches in size and the bones are 4 inches each. They're intended for small- to medium-sized dogs.

Give your best buddy the gift of mental enrichment with a puzzle toy. Hours of entertainment await your dog, and you as well!

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