10 Reasons Your Pup Needs a Dog Subscription Box

Perhaps you are the proud parent of a herd of small dogs, or maybe you prefer to keep the company of a Great Dane or two. No matter what type of pet you have, a subscription box can do wonders to keep your dog healthy and happy (and bring some light to your life, too!).

What exactly are the benefits of a dog subscription box? Well, we are so glad that you asked.

1. New Toys Keep Dogs Entertained

A dog subscription box is a carefully-curated tool box delivered to your door that ensures your dog has everything they need to nurture their natural instincts, stay mentally and physically stimulated, and promotes bonding between dogs and dog lovers.

As a result, it is important that our dogs regularly have access to toys to play with, new and old. Consider your dog’s size, breed, age, and preferred playstyle when determining the right play regimen for them. All of these factors will also be considered when you and your pup receive your KONG Club Dog Subscription Box.

2. Enough Excitement and Exercise During the Day Will Help Them Relax

We might all want nothing more than some time to relax, but our dogs are often the opposite. This is why the phenomenon of zoomies is so common. Have you ever witnessed your pup sprint around the house at three o’clock in the morning for seemingly no reason? Perhaps this is because they were not entertained enough during the day.

Dogs need to get enough exercise during the day, or else they might have an abundance of energy at inopportune times. You may already take your dog on regular walks, but they still do not seem to be tired out. Whether you have a hyped-up puppy or an adult dog who enjoys running around, you might want to add some playtime into the mix.

In the case of puppies, it is generally better to offer them multiple play and exercise sessions throughout the day rather than one large one. Their bodies are still developing, and an overly long walk could put stress on their systems, joints, and growing bones. Shorter and more frequent bursts of exercise will give your puppy the opportunity to get rid of some energy in a way that is healthy for them.

Once your dog has entered the wonders of canine adulthood, some of their puppy energy will likely dissipate with time. This perfectly natural process might even be a blessing for some pet parents who are ready for an uninterrupted night’s sleep. Now that your furry friend is older, they can handle longer play sessions with tougher toys.

3. Different Monthly Themes Can Help Your Dog Thrive

Each and every KONG dog subscription box comes complete with new products like treats and toys that address the natural instincts and various play styles of canines. This is likely enough to get your dog excited, but dog parents can also have fun with each month’s theme. These themed boxes are specifically centered around doggy wellness.

All of the delicious recipes (mmm… handmade stuffing for toys) and durable KONG toys are parts of cultivated collections made to address the key building blocks of dog wellness.

These pillars of wellness include:

  • Nutrition
  • Emotional wellness
  • Environmental challenges
  • Behavior
  • Preventative care
  • Exercise and play

4. A Monthly Subscription Box Allows Dogs To Explore Their Natural Instincts

While it might be difficult to see while your dog is rolling over asking for belly rubs, they are descendants of mighty hunters. They have a wide variety of instincts passed down from their wolf ancestors that should be engaged regularly — chewing, hunting, fetching, and more.

The best dog subscription boxes allow your pup to truly be themselves. Luckily, KONG Club has a month-by-month plan that lets your dog do just that.

5. Your Dog Will Learn Proper Behaviors From Their First Box Onward

If your dog is a chewer, they will find something to chew whether you like it or not. The best way to teach your dog proper behaviors is to provide them with all of the chews they need.

The iconic toy for chewers is the Kong® Classic. Fill it with dog-safe peanut butter or natural treats for a chewy, fun time. This toy encourages self-play but also makes for wild games of fetch with an unpredictable bounce.

The presence of your dog’s natural instincts is an indicator of their long, storied family history. Luckily, we can teach them how to use these instincts healthily. Be sure to offer them dog treats when they use toys correctly to incentivize them even more!

6. Mental Stimulation Will Prevent Your Pet From Becoming Bored

Not only is an abundance of exercise crucial for helping your dog sleep at night, but it is also integral for keeping them content during the day. Without enough toys to play with and items to interact with, your pup could easily become bored. Boredom is one of the biggest enemies of any dog, dog mom, dog dad, or pet parent.

If you hand off a mentally stimulating toy like the Treat Spiral Stick, they can exercise their brain and their bodies. This toy helps satisfy foraging instincts all while looking like chic modern art displayed on the floor of your home.

7. A Bored Dog Is a Potentially Destructive Dog

Your understimulated dog could potentially start whining, scratching at your door, or making other kinds of noise to get your attention. It likely will not take long for them to begin looking for other sources of entertainment. A dog without the proper toys will not stop playing; they will simply search for alternative kinds of toys.

These “alternative toys” could be any number of your personal belongings. From shoes to treasured family heirlooms to all sorts of gadgets, your dog might start to see them as playthings.

Your dog doesn’t just need toys; they need a fresh selection to avoid boredom. Otherwise, you never know what your furry friend might just find their way into.

Boredom is one of the main factors that drive destructive behavior, including eating your favorite shoes.

8. A Subscription Box Helps You and Your Pup Branch Out

It is true that dogs are creatures of habit, and so are many humans. With that in mind, there is always a benefit to be gained from trying something new. Sometimes, we can get so bogged down in our routines that we forget there is a world of new opportunities and experiences out there. This concept can also be true for our dogs.

While major life changes should be introduced gently to your dog, variety is still the spice of life. Small changes like a slightly different walking route or offering new toys and treats (more on that soon) help to energize pets.

Of course, there might be major unavoidable changes for you and your pup. When this happens, be sure to reach out to your dog’s veterinarians for their advice on the upcoming transition. This also applies when making changes that only affect your pet, such as changing their dog food.

By branching out from the norm, you might just see new parts of your dog’s personality come to light. Perhaps they are especially fond of a type of toy you never considered giving them before.

At the same time, maybe they will find a new favorite treat that gets them especially motivated. Maybe you will discover a love of making customizable dog treats for your furry friend!

9. Finding a New High-Reward Treat Can Make Training a Breeze

Each one of KONG Club’s dog subscription boxes comes with treats to help your pet thrive. Sometimes, these will come in the form of individual treats to be offered when your pet performs the desired behavior. Other times, you and your pet may receive treat fillings that work perfectly in fillable toys.

If you have a very food-motivated dog, then you know firsthand just how effective training with treats can be. You might think that you have already found your dog’s favorite treat in the world, but the truth is that you never know.

By trying new things together, you could easily find a treat that gets your dog ready to sit, lay down, or roll over with the best of them.

10. It Is Often Hard To Find High-Quality, Durable Toys

We all know that finding high-quality, tough toys for dogs can be challenging. One of the best things about the KONG Club subscription box is that KONG toys are designed for extra durability and the highest levels of quality. For example, all stuffed toys have five rows of top-stitching, offering quality dog toys that are just right for your dog.

If you have a tough chewer or even several heavy chewers, know that there are options that address all of your needs, like our line of toys just for Extreme Chewers.

A Doggone Good Time

As dog lovers, we all want the very best for our pets. Thankfully, dog subscription boxes provide a convenient and adorable option.

With the KONG Club Dog Subscription Box (or the Cat Subscription Box), you (and your pet) will receive new treats, toys, and more every month centering on helping your dog access their inner wolf to be the perfect puppy and housemate.

Plus, with the KONG Club App, you can access 24/7 help with pet coaches, trainers, and vets for immediate advice whenever you need it.

Sources:

Changes in Behaviour and Voluntary Physical Activity Exhibited by Sled Dogs throughout

Incremental Exercise Conditioning and Intermittent Rest Days | NCBI

Incentive Motivation in Pet Dogs – Preference for Constant vs Varied Food Rewards | Scientific Reports

Understanding Dog Behaviors | Blue Sky Vet Clinic

Keeping Your Cat Happy With a Monthly Subscription Box

Cats are curious; it is in their very nature. When you look at your cat, they are probably in the middle of snoozing the day away. Every now and then, your cat will be awake and be ready to play. When that happens, they are likely to quickly and thoroughly investigate any new item that enters their domain.

Yet, just as quickly as a cat becomes riveted with a new item, they can easily find themselves bored soon after. This is why it is so important to keep finding new ways to engage with your cat. An under-stimulated kitty is a bored kitty, and a bored kitty is one who could become loud, distracting, or even unintentionally destructive.

It’s integral to provide your pet with a variety of new cat toys to keep their days exciting. Otherwise, the only limits to what could happen are your cat’s imagination.

This responsibility can be somewhat taxing on cat lovers or pet parents of all kinds. After all, cats can’t exactly scroll the internet with us and point to what they want.

So, let’s discuss how a subscription box can make a big (adorable) difference.

What Does a Cat Need To Be Happy?

It should go without saying that individual cats will have their own individual needs. That being said, there are some constants that will greatly increase any cat’s quality of life.

First, cats are likely to want different amounts of attention from their pet parents, depending on their mood. Sometimes your kitty might want nothing more than to snuggle up with you on the couch. Other times, your cat might just want you to watch them eat. Why cats enjoy us watching them eat is truly one of the great mysteries of being cat parents.

Then, there are those occasions when your cat is ready for a thorough play session. Playing with your cat is essential for their weight and muscle tone and satisfies their natural instincts (more on that later). The many benefits of playing with your cat can go much deeper than just that.

When you play with your cat, you facilitate an even stronger bond between the two of you. At the same time, you are also helping your cat feel mentally stimulated, preventing them from getting bored. One of the best ways is to introduce new toys into your cat’s rotation regularly.

Is Variety Important to Cats?

When it comes to items like toys, cats can become used to objects fairly quickly. At that time, give them new options to play with. In this way, a cat subscription box can make cat parenthood a much more streamlined process.

In the case of items like toys, catnip, and cat treats, your pet will be excited by some variety. At the same time, you should always be sure to keep their favorite toys and delicious, natural treats within reach. When it comes to their cat food (whether it is dry or a wet can of food), be sure to talk with their veterinarians before making a major change.

Seeing your cat play with an unexpected extra toy or their curiosity piqued by that first box can make a huge change for the better. Your cat will be ready to meow for joy as the fun gadgets arrive at the doorstep with their monthly plan.

Balancing Your Cat’s Desire for Routine With Their Need for Mental Stimulation

You have probably noticed that your cat is a creature of habit. Many cats will voice their displeasure if it is a minute past when they usually get their dinner. On a larger scale, life changes like moving houses can be a stressful time for cats.

Since different cats can have opposing desires based on breeds, no two breeds are alike. Apps like the KONG Club can help you understand your cat’s play style and which instincts drive them most strongly.

Plus, with the app, you can work with veterinary professionals, animal behavior experts, and animal nutrition experts to ensure that everything in your cat’s life is up to scratch.

What Is in a Subscription Box?

KONG Club cat subscription boxes come complete with a variety of toys and treats that help address a monthly feline wellness topic. Each monthly theme is carefully curated to improve your cat’s overall wellbeing.

Just like when writing the perfect birthday card, personalization is key. That’s why all our items have been hand-selected to benefit your cat’s quality of life.

Which Cat Boxes Are Best?

The absolute best kinds of cat boxes, whether they are via subscription service or otherwise, are the ones that truly consider your cat’s wellbeing.

This is why KONG Club monthly subscription boxes always have a topic thoroughly selected by animal care professionals. Rather than just being cute (although they’re definitely that too), KONG Club boxes are made to improve your cat’s daily life by satisfying their natural instincts — like hunting, pouncing, and scratching.

What Are the Benefits of a Cat Subscription Box?

Though we have touched on this a little throughout the article, the idea certainly bears repeating. The best cat subscription boxes benefit both cats and humans alike.

This kind of high-quality monthly box can alleviate some stress from any pet parent’s mind. When your cat always has something purrfect and exciting to play with, you know they won’t end up using your home decor pieces as scratchers.

These benefits become even more apparent when you consider the central pillars of each themed box.

Different Themes Can Cater to Your Cat’s Needs

Each new KONG Club subscription box that you and your cat receive is centered around a different theme. These themes vary from month to month and are crafted to benefit your pet’s physical and mental health.

Your fun box contains items like toys, catnip, and recipes that enhance the theme of the month. These themes take on a variety of health-related topics that will benefit both you and your pet in the long run.

Just some of these wellness building blocks include:

  • Nutrition
  • Emotional wellness
  • Environmental challenges
  • Behavior
  • Preventative care
  • Exercise and play

Properly balanced needs are crucial to having a healthy and happy cat. Your cat’s needs may also change as they grow and adapt over time. It is possible that they could become more or less comfortable with their surroundings. Having a subscription box to look forward to just for your cat can create some excitement for your tiny feline predator.

The right subscription box can also help your cat let out their natural instincts in a healthy way.

How Can the KONG Club Subscription Box Engage Your Cat’s Natural Instincts?

Each KONG Club subscription box is specifically and carefully made to address cats’ many different needs and wants. The plentiful mental benefits of playing with your cat can often be overlooked for humans and cats.

Us humans get to enjoy lower stress levels and more feelings of contentment when we interact with our pets through play. This article isn’t about us, though. It’s about our furry feline friends! So how do they mentally benefit from playtime?

When cats play, they are using their instincts in a nondestructive, enriching, and just plain adorable way. If you need any proof of your cat’s natural-born instincts, look no further than the behaviors of big cats all over the world. While hunting, chasing, pouncing, and attentive watching are all crucial parts of the process.

Your sweet kitty who spends the vast majority of the day sleeping in their cat bungalow might not seem like an apex predator, but those instincts are still there. By playing with the right fun toys, your cat can feel both invigorated and comforted.

How Does the KONG Club Subscription Box Help Your Cat Learn Productive Behaviors?

Engaging in play is also profoundly important to cats’ mental wellbeing. Every KONG Club box caters to another one of your cat’s needs. Some will have more to do with play and exercise, and others will focus on nutrition.

By giving your cat luxury items that were made explicitly for them to play with, your bond with one another gets stronger.

Plus, why would a cat bother with your favorite t-shirt when there is an even more cuddly bumblebee stuffed with catnip right there?

What’s in the Box?

Cats are inherently curious, meaning that they are always looking to explore and discover new items. Perhaps your cat is sniffing around looking for an exciting mouse toy, a delicious new treat, or simply another way to engage with their favorite person– you.

No matter what your cat is searching for, a subscription box is a wonderful way to lovingly provide your pet with a variety of mentally stimulating goodies. With quality cat toys from a subscription plan, a single cat or multi-cat household is bound to reap real rewards.

There are so many reasons for us to love cats, and now there are so many more ways to show that love than ever before.

Sources:

Feline Behavior Problems: Destructive Behavior | Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine

The ‘Feline Five’: An exploration of personality in pet cats (Felis catus) | NIH

Your Cat’s Instinctive Behavior | Catonsville Cat Clinic

Top 7 Cat Chew Toys To Try

By offering your cat the right toys, you can get them to stop nipping your furniture and fingers for good. Nipping and biting fingers is not always an aggressive gesture. In fact, oftentimes, it simply means that your cat wants to play with you.

Luckily, we have some suggestions that will help you get the process started. Let’s review the best cat chew toys out there and how to bring joy to your feline friend.

How Can You Stop a Cat From Chewing Your Furniture?

The urge to chew is a natural instinct for cats, just like it is for many animals. This instinct has been passed down through countless generations of big cats, eventually making its way to your furry friend. Due to this, you cannot train this desire out of your cat.

However, just because you can’t train the urge to chew out your cat does not mean that your belongings have to pay the price. The key to keeping your furniture and personal items safe is to change your expectations to something more realistic.

Cats will never stop nipping and chewing, so the best course of action is to provide them with tools for success.

Oftentimes, when a cat resorts to chewing at wires or nipping at your fingers, it is because they want to play. Being playful is a healthy and adorable trait for any kitty to have. You can help them do so safely by offering them a variety of toys made specifically for them.

This is where the KONG Club cat subscription box comes into play. Cats can become bored with the same old toys day after day (just like us, their pet parents!).

By giving them a subscription box, you can both expect to get a batch of new toys, treats, and recipes each month. This will keep your cat from getting bored and keep your furniture in much better shape. Animal enrichment helps prevent unwanted and destructive behaviors.

Plus, you’ll have access to all the help and info you need about why on Earth your cat does the things they do with the KONG Club app. You can talk withcall up animal behaviorists, nutritionists, and vets who will help build Personalized Pet Plans for every feline need.for any question 24/7, no wait needed.

What Should You Look for in a Cat’s Chew Toy?

Since cat chew toys are somewhat less common than dog chew toys, people can sometimes be at a loss for what to look for. The truth is, there are a lot of similarities and plenty of options for all of our furbabies.

For cat chew toys, you are going to want to prioritize a few different traits in particular:

  • Make sure that the toy is durable and tough.
  • It is a large bonus if a chew toy actively cleans their teeth during play.
  • Of course, the toy should be made of safe, nonhazardous materials
  • Double-check that the toy is the right size for your cat or kitten. Otherwise, it could pose a potential choking hazard.
  • Some toys may include catnip to keep your kitty entertained for longer.
  • Crinkling or other sounds might make the toy even more enticing.
  • Fun patterns and colors can help your cat stay engaged.
  • Certain toys have the ability to be filled with their favorite cat treats.

Without further ado, here are just a few of our favorite cat chew toys that your furry feline friend will love!

1. Kitty KONG

The Kitty KONG is a classic, and it is easy to see why. The toy can be tossed or simply left alone for your cat to explore. If you do choose to throw it, the Kitty KONG’s unpredictable bounce pattern will keep your cat guessing and engaged. If it is left on the floor or another play-friendly surface, it can be filled with treats to make the toy that much more exciting.

By putting treats inside this toy, you encourage your cat to inspect the item. Once they get the treats out, the feeling of accomplishment will have them coming back for more. The Kitty KONG is not only an excellent chew toy but also a wonderful means of mental stimulation for your pet.

This toy is entertaining enough on its own, and this is when surprising bounces can be especially fun. Otherwise, you can put catnip into the toy. After all, what cat doesn’t like some good catnip from time to time?

If you do not know exactly where to start when it comes to catnip, don’t worry.

We have got you covered with number option number two.

2. KONG Botanicals Variety 3-Pack

Remember two seconds ago when we said that we have the perfect catnip options for you? Well, it is time for us to make good on that promise. The Botanicals Catnip Variety 3-Pack comes complete with three different kinds of catnip for your cat to try. The benefits do not stop there, though.

This 3-pack comes complete with different aromatic blends that will appeal to you and your cat. Sweet and Calming lavender is a lovely scent that soothes your furry friend into total relaxation.

Meanwhile, the Fresh and Lively Lemongrass blend will help your cat direct their energy into rambunctious play, keeping your furniture safe. Lastly, Cool and Minty Valerian Root will give your cat that extra burst of energy they need to give playtime their all.

Depending on the time, our cats could all use a little extra pep in their step or a dose of tranquility. By adding the KONG Botanicals Variety 3-Pack into their daily routine or putting some in their toys, you are giving them just that.

3. KONG Nibble Critter Catnipillar

If you have been waiting for a cat chew toy that is equal parts adorable and effective, this might just be the one for you(r cat).

The KONG Nibble Critter Catnipillar is specifically designed to be irresistible for your cat, no matter how they like to play. More than that, the textured material on the Catnipillar cleans and polishes teeth. (And finally, it makes for absolutely adorable pictures.)

4. Infused Cat Gyro

Some notably food-motivated kitties will dive head-first into their food the moment it is available. While this might seem all well and good at the moment, anyone who has had to clean up the consequences knows that is not the case.

We have the perfect option on our toy menu for pet parents looking for a way to help their cats slow down while eating. The Infused™ Cat Gyro is a toy and feeder all in one. You can choose to put your cat’s food or some of their favorite treats inside this toy. And let the games begin.

This toy can be chewed, batted, swatted, or anything else your cat wants to do with it. Truly, the only limits are your cat’s imagination. Since they have to work to dispense the food or treats, they are guaranteed to eat slower while engaging their minds — a win-win.

5. Crackles Rootz

The KONG Crackles Rootz toys might not dispense treats, but they do dispense loads of fun! These assorted toys look like root vegetables, making it even that much cuter when your cat inevitably begins to chew on them. They are made in fun, exciting colors and come complete with a crinkle noise that your cat can activate.

Not only that, but they also feature a feather feature that adds to the realism of the leaves. In your cat’s mind, they see that feather as an added incentive to play. They are seasoned with KONG North American Premium Catnip, making these toys all the more delectable to your pet.

6. Cat Active Scrunchie

The Cat Active Scrunchie by KONG comes complete with a plethora of different textures and sensations to enjoy. Of course, that is in addition to the many exciting colors it sports that will get your cat ready to play. It’s so cute that you might just be tempted to wear it yourself.

This toy also comes complete with an added crinkle and bell sound that no cat would be able to resist. Plus, it’s infused with KONG’s premium catnip to encourage prolonged play.

7. Crackles & Cheez Mouse

For a two-pack of chew toys that will delight both your kitty and your wallet, look no further than Crackles & Cheez. The crackling and crinkling sounds will have your cat playing throughout the day so that they are ready to snuggle up with you at night.

These catnip-infused toys are perfect for grab-and-catch play. As a result, they can easily be thrown for a rousing game of cat fetch that will even make your dog jealous.

Something To Chew On

We all love our cats. After all, they are furry, snuggly, purring little creatures. What is there not to like?

Well, the sharp teeth might be slightly lower on the list of things we love about cats. Cats’ teeth are perfect for capturing prey, as they regularly do in the wild as obligate carnivores.

Those sharp little chompers are somewhat less useful when there is little to chew other than your furniture or fingers. Once you give your cat the proper tools and toys to chew on, they’ll be ready to leave your belongings alone.

Sources:

Veggie Cat Food? Why Not All Cats Need Meat | Scientific American

Feline Dental Disease | Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine

Feline Behavior Problems: Destructive Behavior | Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine

Nine Durable Chew Toys for Puppies

Puppies are one of the greatest joys that life has to offer. They are absolutely adorable, full of energy, curious as anything, and love to play. When all of those traits combine, it is survival of the fittest for their chew toys.

Inevitably, some toys not built to hold up to this scrutiny will buckle under the pressure. And we mean literal pressure — puppies are near-constant chewers.

This article comes complete with a variety of safe chew toys that your puppy will enjoy, but what exactly makes a toy of this variety safe for puppies? Before we get into the chew toys themselves, we need to review some critical (and adorable) facts and figures.

What Should You Look for in Puppy Chew Toys?

It is a common misconception that one kind of chew toy fits all. Without doing any further research, it is understandable that someone might think that all chew toys are created equal.

In reality, there are key differences when it comes to which toy is best for your dog. Different dogs tend to favor specific toys, but these general guidelines can alter when considering puppies.

The first and most important attribute that you should look for in your puppy’s chew toys is durability. After all, there is a reason we made it the central focus of this article. The material should be able to stand up to your pooch’s needle-like baby teeth, but it should never be too hard.

Yet, if this toy is too hard, it could end up doing much more harm than good. As a result, you should ensure that any toy you get for your puppy is always softer than their teeth.

How Big Should a Puppy’s Chew Toy Be?

The exact size of the chew toy will depend on how big they are and their age. Of course, smaller dogs will need smaller chew toys. With that in mind, you should always be very careful and cognizant not to get your dog a toy that is too small. If the toy isn’t big enough, it can pose a serious choking hazard to your pup.

Of course, a large breed puppy is going to need a bigger chew toy earlier on than small dogs like a Chihuahua or a Pomeranian. If you give your dog a toy that features a squeaker, be sure to supervise them as they use it. Sometimes, the squeaky sound can cause dogs to try and destroy the toys and possibly swallow the source of the noise.

Why Do Puppies Need Chew Toys?

Some people look at toys as a bonus or a luxury for pets, but the truth is that they are an absolute necessity. Dogs need toys to be mentally stimulated, engage their sense of play, and not get too bored. In the case of puppies, they require chew toys, likely even more than their adult counterparts.

There are a few reasons that puppies require chew toys. Dogs of any age, but puppies especially, have natural instincts telling them to chew. These are natural and are impossible to train out of your dog.

Instead, you should redirect that chewy energy onto objects built to withstand it. Otherwise, your dog might end up chewing shoes, wires, or any number of other items you don’t want them to get in.

The second reason that chew toys are necessary is specific to puppies. Just like with human children, puppies will grow and lose their baby teeth as they age. Eventually, these will be replaced with a full set of adult teeth. In the meantime, though, they will have to go through a process known as teething.

What Is Teething?

You may be aware of teething because it also happens with human kids, and it often instills the same urge to chew and bite. Teething is when the baby teeth fall out and are replaced with adult teeth.

The process of teething is generally a painful and uncomfortable one, so it is essential to provide your puppy with a variety of chew toys to soothe their gums during this time.

Teething typically lasts until a puppy is about six months old since, at that point, their adult teeth will be fully grown. Keep in mind that you will still have to give your puppy toys appropriate for their size, even if they are no longer teething.

So they might not be ready for full, adult-sized toys just yet. If you suspect that this process is not progressing as it should for your pup, it is likely time to visit your vet.

Exactly what durable toys should you give to your puppy? Well, we are so glad you asked.

1. KONG Classic Puppy

The Puppy KONG dog toy is a Kong classic for a reason. It comes complete with a gentle, natural rubber specifically formulated to handle any and all puppy teething. It also comes in various sizes so it can meet your puppy at their current age. Not only that, but this Kong toy is also interactive.

To keep your puppy occupied while crate training or simply to give them something to keep them mentally stimulated, this toy can be stuffed with a wide variety of fillings. With these teething toys, playtime with even the most aggressive chewers will be long-lasting and rewarding.

2. Kong Teething Stick

For a toy that specifically addresses the puppy teething process, the Kong Teething Stick has you and your canine companion covered. This toy was thoughtfully designed to include ridges composed of durable rubber to clean your dog’s teeth. This dog chew toy is a must for any pet parent that wants to help assuage their puppy’s sore gums.

3. Puppy Ball

No matter how young or old, your dog can have a sustaining love for a good old-fashioned game of fetch at any stage of life.

For dogs under nine months who enjoy running, chasing, and retrieving, the Puppy Ball is a wonderful place to start. This ball can teach puppies all about the wonders of fetch while it bounces all over the place.

4. Puppy Activity Ball

Then, we have those little puppy geniuses who need a significant amount of mental stimulation to stay happy and healthy (and out of trouble — looking at you, Border Collies).

For those dogs, the Puppy Activity Ball offers just the right mix of thoughtful play, all while promoting healthy teeth and gums. You can add peanut butter, dog treats, or kibble to this toy to make it even more engaging. With this ball’s treat dispensing ability, the fun never ends!

5. The KONG Binkie

If you have ever had the urge to see your puppy with a pacifier in their mouth, this is the best dog toy for you. Even if you have not had that desire just yet, it is never too late to start!

The KONG Binkie can also be filled with different puppy-approved stuffings to make the incentive to chew even stronger… and the puppy pictures even more precious.

6. Puppy Tires

What is even cuter than a full-sized tire? A dog tire! And what is even cuter than that? A puppy tire! Kong’s Puppy Tires are rubber toys that are formed from a natural formula made just for puppies to aid them through the teething process.

7. Puppy Goodie Bone

There are perhaps no dog toys out there more iconic than a nice bone to chew on, and that variety of toys can work well for puppies too!

Again, it is just crucial to make sure that the toy is the right size and will not hurt your dog’s teeth. Luckily, the Puppy Goodie Bone comes in a small size for puppies and is made of unique puppy-safe rubber.

8. Puppy Goodie Bone With Rope

The Puppy Goodie Bone With Rope has all the benefits of the Puppy Goodie Bone, but with 100% more rope! Seriously, what’s not to like about that? For games of tug-of-war with your puppy, this is a fantastic toy that is effective and comfortable for your young dog.

9. Rope Ball

Rope toys are not just for adults, and they can have applications beyond just a rousing game of tug-of-war. The KONG Rope Puppy Ball is a great tool for indoor games of fetch because it still can bounce, but it is soft enough not to cause any damage.

At the same time, this puppy-specific rope will help your dog ignite their playful side while also soothing their gums.

Puppy See, Puppy Chew

We all want the best for our dogs, whether they are a new puppy or a long-established member of the family. That principle undoubtedly applies to the toys we give to our dogs, as well.

However, shopping can become a bit more complicated when trying to find the best chew toys for puppies. As long as you stick to a few basic rules, you can find toys that are just right for this stage of your puppy’s life.

Order a KONG Club monthly dog subscription box for your pup and get new toys & treats every month, as well as the KONG Club mobile app with 24/7 access to veterinarians and pet coaches!

Sources:

Dog Toys: How To Pick the Best and Safest | The Humane Society of the United States

A Timeline of Puppy Teething | American Kennel Club

Teeth Teething And Chewing In Puppies | VCA Animal Hospitals.

Signs Your Dog Needs Mental Stimulation | Penn State

Eight Cool Gift Ideas for Dog Owners in 2022

There are two primary categories of gifts for dog parents, and it is first important to decide which one you want to opt for. A gift for a pet parent could either be more targeted toward the person or their pooch.

Both types of presents are immensely rewarding to give and receive. With careful consideration, gifts can impact the recipient in just the right way.

If you want to get the dog parent in your life a present for their pet, you will have a whole host of options ahead of you. Do you want something that will engage their pup’s sense of play? Then toys or a walking supply kit would be your best bet.

For a more docile pet, maybe you want to get them something cute that they can snuggle and cuddle up to? Then perhaps a memory foam dog bed or pet carrier would be ideal for the dog parents. Either way, it is best to consider both the dog’s play style as well as the person’s preferences.

On the other hand, you might choose to get a gift that is more for the human than the dog. In this case, something sweet and sentimental is often a choice that will lead to a treasured gift for many years to come.

Hopefully, this gift guide is enough to get some creative juices flowing and help you start to think of some of the best gifts for dog lovers. If you are looking for an option that will consistently reward both the dog and the pet parents, do not fret!

We have just the thing for you:

The Gift That Keeps On Giving

At this point, many of us have tried out a subscription service or two. Chances are, you have experienced the excitement of receiving a new shipment of goodies regularly firsthand.

You know the anticipation that goes into it, and the joy that follows when you get to try out what arrived in your latest box. This anticipation is perhaps best compared to the excitement a dog feels when they get to play with a new toy for the first time. Research has proven that dogs love a new toy (just like their humans!).

Here’s how to gift the joy of toys:

1. The KONG Club Monthly Dog Subscription Box

The KONG Club Monthly Subscription Box for dogs is the perfect gift for pet parents and their furry best friends. When they and their dog open up their subscription box, they will each be greeted by a plethora of toys, treats, tips, and recipes that are sure to get tails wagging.

Each month’s box is based on a theme centering around pet wellness. Together, these monthly boxes can help to understand a dog’s physical and emotional health.

The advantages do not stop there. KONG Club also has a convenient app complete with both 24/7 vets and pet coaches who are available to provide support and create personalized guidance and pet plans.

If you are in the market for a gift that combines both fun for dogs and peace of mind for pet parents, this might just be the present you have been looking for.

Gifts for Dogs

Now that we have established an example of a gift that would cater to both the pet parent and the dog, let’s delve a bit deeper into presents that are more for pets than people.

Let’s be real: Caring for pets can be expensive. So, when you give a present to a dog, you’re actually giving their human a little break. Now they can enjoy that avocado toast worry-free!

2. Dog Toys That Cater to the Pet’s Interests

No matter what the dog loves to do, there are an abundance of fantastic toy options to choose from. The key is to think about how the dog behaves. If they make a habit of nipping, a chew toy is a great way to curb that instinct.

Or perhaps they like to fetch and run like a wild one all day long, then look for a ball launcher to really get the party going. For little doggy Einsteins, maybe some interactive toys would be best.

3. Some New Favorite Dog Treats

If there is one thing we know about dogs, it is their incredible passion for food. Frankly, it’s enviable how so many of them can continue to wolf (no pun intended) down kibble out of their dog bowl like they weren’t just fed a few hours ago.

Many, but not all, dogs are very food motivated. This means that one of the best possible ways to train them is with a wide array of their favorite high-reward treats available at the pet parent’s disposal. The presence of these treats helps to create positive associations in the pet’s mind that makes going to the bathroom outside seem like a super fun and great idea.

Training is a great way to keep a dog’s mind active to reduce destructive behavior and boost happiness. We have to help provide mental stimulation for our dogs since they can’t exactly pull out that Sudoku puzzle when they’re bored.

If the particular furry friend in question is not as food motivated, pet parents still have plenty of enticing options. Dogs are different; they have their own interests and passions. Just like all Dalmatians have different spots, every dog has a unique (and adorable) personality.

Gifts for Pet Parents

Next, we have gifts that cater a bit more to the pet parent than the pet themselves.

4. A Beautiful Pet Portrait

When it comes right down to it, a lot of pet parents would love to have a portrait of their treasured pet hung up on the wall for everyone to see. If you suspect that the recipient of your gift belongs firmly in that category, then it might be worth looking into getting a professional portrait done of their pooch.

Not only is this great gift profoundly thoughtful, but it also gives you the opportunity to support artists and collaborate on the piece. Look around; there are probably some excellent artists in your community who would jump at the opportunity to create a portrait of an adorable Bulldog, Golden Retriever, Mutt, or whoever your Fido happens to be.

Actually, that brings us to our next gift suggestion.

5. A Dog DNA Test

Depending on the circumstance under which this person got their doggy, they may or may not know their specific breed breakdown.

Imagine their delight and shock when they find out their rescue dog, who was called a Great Dane, has a little Chihuahua running through their blood. Other than this information being fun, it could help to explain some of your dog’s quirkier habits.

The result of the dog’s DNA test and their breed information data can be immensely helpful to pet parents and vets. For example, some dog breeds might be more predisposed to face certain health challenges. Simply being armed with this information in advance could help ensure that the dog stays happy and healthy for a long time to come.

6. Custom Clothing (for Pet Parents, Dogs, or Both!)

Since we just covered a gift that is both interesting and informative, now it is time for one that is just silly. Whether the gift recipient would want to wear t-shirts or a hoodie with their dog’s face printed directly on the front of it. Otherwise, maybe they would go wild for a pair of matching shirts for them and their canine companion.

Then, it is also entirely possible that the gift recipient would rather their dog be the star of the show. In this case, look into a bandana that complements their fur color.

For a gift that is both adorable and practical, check out our next suggestion.

7. A Fancy Dog Collar and Dog Leash

Getting the pet parent in your life a new, spiffy dog collar and dog leash will go a long way in showing how much you care. This gift is simultaneously sweet and customizable while also being incredibly helpful in day-to-day life with a dog.

You could even personalize a collar with the dog’s name or include tags with their necessary information to go the extra mile. Dogs and their people who love a nice stroll would also appreciate biodegradable poop bags or a reusable water bottle (with the dog’s name on it, of course).

8. Consider a Customized Door Mat

Door mats are often a must when it comes to living with (and loving) a dog. They’re one of the best ways to make sure the dirt and grime accumulated from both shoes and muddy dog paws stay outside where it belongs.

A mat with a cute message, an impression of the dog’s paw print, or an image of the dog on the front are instantly iconic. Plus, it’s a great way to let visitors know that they are about to be covered in dog hair.

The Greatest Gift of All

Whether you’re trying to win the affection of your friend’s new dog, or if it’s just time for a spectacular holiday gift, you have a lot of worthy choices available. As long as you consider what the dog and pet parents want, you will find something perfect.

Sources:

Maintaining Pet Health: Mental Stimulation Matters to Your Family Pet | Fox Valley Animal Hospital

Habituation and dishabituation during object play in kennel-housed dogs | SpringerLink

12 Common Dog Breeds and Their Health Issues | Healthline

How To Stop Your Dog From Play Biting

KONG puppy

Feel like you are your puppy’s pin cushion? Kids afraid of the new puppy? You are not alone.

Puppy play biting is very common. It’s what puppies do. It’s actually a good thing to do – believe it or not. Puppy play biting actually gives us the opportunity to teach them “bite inhibition”.

Inhibiting their bite is an important lesson all puppies need to learn. Learning that humans are very delicate and they can never put their teeth on us, could prevent a dangerous situation in the future.

STEP #1: EXERCISE

But the very first of 3 steps to stop puppy play biting is EXERCISE.

The number one reason puppies play bite is because they are bored. They have too much energy and don’t know what to do with it. So your first step is to keep your puppy exercised – physically AND mentally.

Since your puppy has probably not completed their vaccine series, you can’t take them for a walk. But there are some easy and safe games to play to get him tired from the comfort of your own home or yard. Fetch is a great one. It doesn’t matter at this point if your puppy brings the toy back, just throw another one. He will learn to bring it back and drop it, but right now let’s just get him tired.

Bonus, you can sit on the couch to play fetch and make your puppy do all the work. Full disclosure, I am the laziest trainer you will ever meet. The more training I can do sitting on the couch, the better.

Command sequences are another great way to exercise your puppy, plus it reinforces basic obedience consistency and attention. Simply doing half a dozen “come”, “sit”, “downs” etc repeated, will take the edge off of all that puppy energy. Remember 5 minutes of mental exercise is worth about 20 minutes of physical. Make him think.

STEP #2: ENRICHMENT

The second step to stopping play biting is ENRICHMENT.

Keep your puppy busy. He does not know what to do to occupy himself – you must teach him. Instead of constantly looking at his humans to entertain him, your puppy needs to learn how to entertain himself. This is where the KONG toy is invaluable. Make the KONG do all the training work.

By stuffing the KONG full of your puppy’s meal and maybe a couple of yummy treats to make it interesting, your puppy will automatically play with it. Again, the less work I have to do, the better. Make the KONG do it for you.

Every day the KONG is a different toy depending on the food you put in it. It’s like a video game for your dog. Keeps him busy, slows down his eating and keeps him out of trouble. Bonus, freeze the whole KONG Classic with food stuffed inside for a special treat, that will keep your puppy busy even longer.

If your puppy is working a KONG, he’s not working your last nerve!

STEP #3: INSTRUCTION

The third step to stopping the puppy play biting is INSTRUCTION.

Teaching your puppy not to do it. It’s actually a good thing your puppy is biting (keep reminding yourself that when he comes at you with those sharp needle teeth). If he didn’t play bite, we couldn’t teach him not to do it.

Take advantage of this time in your puppy’s life to teach him he can never ever put his teeth on humans. Teaching him that bite inhibition is a valuable life lesson.

Have a zero tolerance policy for teeth. Do not allow your puppy to even touch you with their teeth. No playing rough or wrestling with him. That only encourages the biting. Give your puppy the same rules now that he will have as an adult. It’s cute when he is 10 pounds, but downright dangerous when he is 60 pounds – or more.

If your puppy touches you with his teeth, hold your hand still and say, “ow” in a fairly high pitched tone. You want to hold your hand still because as predators dogs are hard wired to chase movement. Moving your hand around just excites your puppy and makes him want to bite it more.

Say, “ow” because it mimics how another puppy would tell him he is playing too rough. It’s communication your puppy understands. If he stops when you do this, he understands. If he comes back and does it again, repeat your “ow” but louder. If he continues to to come back biting, walk away and redirect his energy into more exercise and enrichment. Those first 2 steps are the most important.

Don’t rely simply on what to do when he is doing it wrong. Rather, focus on letting your puppy know when he is doing it right. If you just tell him “NO, don’t do that!” it doesn’t get to the root of the problem, which is – he’s bored. Always replace a bad habit with a good one.
Finally – be prepared. Have several KONGs stuffed and ready to go in the freezer so you can easily grab them when you need them. Get in the habit of exercising your puppy several times a day. After a potty outing, spend another 5 minutes on training sequences and fetch. You’re out there anyway, why not? Now go play with your puppy!

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By Cindy Scott, Master Certified Trainer, thedogsetc.com

7 Best Cat Toys for Bored Cats

KONG Triangle Play Mat

If you had to sit around your house all day with nothing to do but eat and sleep, you might jump for joy! However, you can probably imagine that after a while, it would get pretty old without some type of entertainment or engagement. 

Your furry feline’s life is just this when they are alone during the day – eat, sleep, maybe some window watching, sleep, and eat some more. If your cat becomes bored, they may seek to engage their attention in other areas, and those areas may not be the best for your cat or your household. 

Signs Your Cat is Bored

Cats have the reputation for being pets that can take care of themselves. Many cats may not be overt in their emotions for you; some may not even greet you right when you come home for the day (so much for a welcoming committee!). But we still love their sweet meows and purring when you scratch that sweet spot on their back.

However, our cats can get lonely and bored when left alone during the day. Your cat may try to find ways of solving their boredom, and they may find themselves getting into trouble.

Here are some signs that you may see from your cat if they are bored.

Destructive Behavior

If your cat has taken an interest in the sides of your furniture, and by that, we mean scratching it to shreds, your cat may be trying to signal to you that they need something to focus their attention on. It is definitely cheaper to invest in some interactive cat toys rather than a new sofa.

Weight-Gain

If your cat is looking a little fluffier than usual, they may be eating to keep from getting bored. Sound familiar? When we are bored, a bag of chips sounds like the perfect engaging opportunity. Your cat may also feel the same way about their food bowl, taking a few bites here and there to help pass the time.

If you notice you are going through a lot more cat food, and your cat is looking more round, it is likely that they are bored and are choosing snacking as their activity. If your cat has gained weight, you can reach out to your veterinarian for any tips they may have with feline weight loss. 

Terrorizing Others

When you were younger, if you had siblings, one of your boredom-busters may have been to annoy your brother or sister. This same mischievousness may lie within our pets, and annoying their animal “siblings” may be their form of entertaining themselves. 

As our pets are still animals, they will have other tactics of dealing with this terrorizing. We always want to avoid fighting, as we don’t want our pets to hurt each other or induce injuries. At this point, it is important to redirect this energy into a more productive and positive way, like using cat toys to keep our cat engaged. 

How To Alleviate Boredom

Providing your cat opportunities for mental and physical engagement helps alleviate boredom and those not-so-positive signs they may have been exhibiting. We definitely want to help our cats refocus their energies away from any destructive behaviors by providing a positive outlet designed specifically for cats.

Let’s look at the different types of toys that our cats can alleviate their boredom with.

1. Catnip Toys

Catnip toys are a perfect way to give your cat a little zing in their day. Catnip is a type of plant that contains an oil that cats just go crazy for. When exposed to this plant, cats will roll around the container containing the catnip. They may also drool, meow, become hyperactive, or some may just zone out. 

Your cat’s response to catnip is determined by their genes. Just like the gene that determines if cilantro tastes like soap in humans, cats’ genes also determine if they will respond to catnip. This gene is hereditary, and around 70% to 80% of cats will have it. 

Catnip toys contain the catnip plant, fresh or dried (the dried variety is more potent). The catnip in the toy will need to be refreshed a few times a month, as the active ingredient will become stale. Also, your cat may become desensitized to the toy if it is left out all the time. So giving this toy to your cat a few days a week with breaks in between allows them to have the best reaction. 

If you are unable to find loose catnip to refresh the toys with, you can find catnip spray to spritz over their toys or areas your cat is encouraged to use, like their bed or cat perch. 

2. Cat Scratchers

Cat scratchers provide your cat a place for them to satisfy their need to scratch. There are countless types of cat scratchers on the market, with different materials, shapes, and sizes. Some scratchers are built horizontally and some vertically; it really just depends on your cat’s preference on which they will like best. If you are unsure, you can always buy a few varieties of cat scratchers and set them around the house to see which one is used the most. 

3. Perches, Cat Trees, and Tunnels

Cat perches, trees, and tunnels are all great apparatuses for helping your cat to be more physical. 

Perches can be attached to windows. They make for a great viewing point for your cat to keep watch of the yard or neighborhood. They will love watching all the birds and squirrels that pass by. 

Cat trees are great if you have multiple cats, as they can hang out together in the tree. There are various sizes of cat trees made up of different materials and combinations that allow your cat ways to climb, scratch, and snooze. 

Cat tunnels are perfect for your cat if they like places like under the bed or couch. It provides a closed-off space that helps your cat feel snug and secure. Many tunnels are made of fun, crinkly materials that your cat may like to walk on. You can also hang toys within the tunnel to liven up the space and give your cat an object to play with.

4. Puzzle Toys

You can also mentally engage your cat with puzzle toys that have treats hidden inside of them. Some puzzle toys have sliding bits or different hidden spaces. There are electronic puzzle toys that have parts that jump out for your cat to swipe at. This may be just the thing to keep your kitty on their toes.

5. Interactive Teasers and Ball Toys

Interactive teasers have feathers and other dangly parts that are fun to wave in front of your cat. You can drag the toy across the floor so your cat can follow and stalk it. It also gives you a chance to witness the moment when they shake their tail before pouncing — the cutest.

Ball toys usually have some type of ball that is able to be batted around plastic tubing. This is fun for your cat as they move the ball around.

Both interactive teasers and ball toys also have electronic versions that your cats can play with while you are not at home. Many have auto-shut-off features so that the power won’t be depleted in one day. Especially useful if your cat is just snoozing away while the toy is running. 

6. Lasers

Are you really a cat owner if you haven’t watched videos of other cats chasing lasers? We love watching cats get excited and chase a light dog on a wall. The running and jumping sequences they act out trying to catch the dot look like something out of a sci-fi movie. Using a laser pointer is a great way to engage your cat and get them moving and out of their bed.

7. Exercise Wheels

Just like a large hamster wheel, exercise wheels provide a space for your cat to run and get any pent-up energy out. You can lure your cat into using the wheel by placing treats on the wheel. Using a spray paste in your cat’s favorite flavor, like chicken or fish, around the wheel can help encourage them to walk on the wheel to lick up the paste. 

Using an exercise wheel is fantastic for those cats who may have hit the food bowl hard when they were bored. If you are utilizing an exercise wheel to help your cat shed some extra pounds, you can always reach out to your veterinarian for any additional exercise or nutrition tips.

Game On

As cat owners, we need to be able to manage our cat’s feline natural behaviors. If your cat is still trying to scratch on your furniture, you may need to invest in some pet repellent sprays that may smell or taste bad to your cat. This will hopefully keep your cat away from the areas you want to protect. Providing toys to alleviate your cat’s boredom should be a big help in refocusing their attention to more appropriate objects. 

If you find that managing your cat’s behaviors has caused many of your belongings to be destroyed and no improvement has been seen, it’s time to ask for a little help.

With KONG Club, you get a box every month especially curated for cats to help have fun and practice their natural instincts!

 

Sources:

Signs of Boredom in Your Cat | Danbury Animal Welfare Society

Feline Behavior Problems: Destructive Behavior | Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine

How Does Catnip Work Its Magic on Cats? | Scientific American

4 Best Dog Shoes for Summer

Dog walker

It is no secret that the furry, tame friends that we know as dogs today originated as wild wolves. These wolves regularly inhabit incredibly inhospitable lands; they have to withstand temperatures that would send many other species packing. The domestication process of the modern-day dog has been an elaborate one that has occurred over roughly 30,000 years. 

This means that, in some ways, our canine companions do still display notable similarities to their ancestors. Yet, there are many ways in which the dogs of today are pretty far removed from their non-domesticated forefathers. Other than their adorable friendliness and eagerness to please, there are also countless physical ways that dogs have transformed.

While we do have Siberian Huskies and other dogs that bear a striking resemblance to wolves, there are also dogs such as the small yet noble Chihuahua. These cute and compact canines are inherently loveable, but not many people would say that they look a lot like wolves.

This is all to say that while wolves may be attuned to the ways of the wild and are able to thrive under harsh conditions, this is not necessarily the case for our dogs.

Humans and Dogs: A Domesticated Duo

Just one of the many readily apparent differences in physicality from wolves to our domesticated dogs is that their paws may need some extra help from time to time. You would be beyond shocked to see a wolf traversing through the snow with a pair of polka dot booties, but this could be quite different in the case of a pet dog.

It is very likely that you have seen someone’s dog sporting a pair of stylish shoes as they go on their walk. Or there is always the possibility that you have perhaps helped your dog don a pair of shoes themselves.

Despite possible extreme weather conditions or temperatures, your dog is still going to need to take trips outside. Whether this is for a walk to get out some energy, to help them lose weight, or simply to quickly use the bathroom and then rush back inside, this adventure into the outdoors is unavoidable. Since domesticated dogs are not equipped with all of the same tools that wolves are, that is where we can step in to help.

Why Do Dogs Need Shoes in the Summer?

Spending time outside with your pet is one of the absolute top advantages of having a dog. They get to be your outdoor companion as well as while you are both indoors. Walking is essential for canine health (and our health too!).

However, on days that are incredibly hot when you do not feel like venturing outside, it is possible that your dog does not either. Then, there are also those dogs who will never skip a potential trip outside, regardless of how unpleasant the weather might be.

No matter what kind of dog you are lucky enough to have, there will inevitably be very hot days when you both still need to go outside. Depending on where you live, you may experience more of these days than they do in other areas.

As hot as it may be for you outside, remember that your dog is also covered in a significant layer of fur, making them even warmer and putting them at risk for heat stroke. Be sure to have an abundance of water at the ready in case they get dehydrated or need a quick drink while out and about.

Attending to these needs is crucial, but there could just be one key issue that you may be 

forgetting. Consider: Dark colors absorb the most heat, meaning that asphalt on the street has the ability to become unbearably hot very quickly.

Even if you may be wearing shoes that block the brunt of the heat, your dog is likely walking barefoot. This can be very uncomfortable for our pets and has the potential to become even more harmful.

How Do You Know if a Surface Is Too Hot for Your Dog?

Simply knowing the temperature outside will likely be a helpful start in determining whether or not the asphalt is too hot for your dog to walk on. If you still are not entirely sure, you can try to feel the pavement before your dog walks on it.

If you cannot comfortably keep your hand on the surface for five to ten seconds, it is safe to assume that your dog would not be able to comfortably stand on it either. A dog may experience second-degree burns within 35 seconds.

Note that pavement is far from the only surface that can cause harm to your dog’s paws. Sand also has the potential to retain a great deal of heat, so walks on the beach could be cause for alarm.

The same can be said for essentially any surface that is in direct view of the sun, so it is always a good idea to be prepared and aware of the path you plan to take with your dog.

Do Dogs Also Need Shoes in the Winter?

For the purposes of this article, we will be focussing solely on the fact that your dog could use shoes during the harsh and hot summer months. However, it is worth noting that dogs could also benefit from wearing shoes in the winter as well.

On particularly cold, icy, or snowy days, your pet could experience discomfort or even harm to their paws if they are not properly protected.

What to look for in winter shoes for your furry friend may differ in some cases from what they need for summer shoes, so that is likely an issue best left for another article. While there are similarities in what qualities they should have, they might not be equivalent. 

That being said, there are some all-weather options available that can work for different conditions. Do your research to determine if these types of products are something you would like to look into for your pet.

Under What Other Circumstances Might a Dog Need Shoes?

If you are not currently considering the weather as a possible reason your dog might be in need of a pair of shoes, there are some additional situations where they could become useful. In case you want to take your dog on any kind of hike or simply on a path that might have rocks, twigs, and other sharp materials, you should always be prepared.

Even though it is true that dog paws are tougher than human feet and that their paws come equipped with a multi-layer cushioning system, they are still not invincible. Make sure to assess the terrain you are planning on traveling with your dog ahead of time, so you can determine if some kind of shoe or covering might be necessary.

Look for Summer Shoes That Are Durable

You are going to want shoes for your dog that are durable because there is absolutely nothing worse than being in the middle of an enjoyably challenging hike and suddenly realizing that your dog’s shoes have fallen apart or ripped.

At that point, your dog’s paws will be left unprotected from the elements. Durable shoes are the best option, even if you might need to pay a bit more to get them.

Shoes That Are Easy To Put On and Take Off

Many dogs are not overly excited about the prospect of you regularly putting shoes on and taking them off of their feet. It may take them some time to get used to the sensation and go back to walking as confidently as they do without their shoes.

Know your dog, and understand how to read their body language. You can make this process much easier for both you and your dog by getting dog shoes that are easy to put on and take off. Positive reinforcement is key here.

Shoes That Are High Quality and Long Lasting

Once you have decided to purchase summer shoes for your dog, you should make sure that the initial investment will serve you both well for many years.

There is no sense in simply buying a cheap pair with poor quality materials and having them fall apart after a season (or maybe even less). Then, there is always the possibility that a pair of shoes like this could even fall apart during a walk or hike when your dog needs them most.

It is best to avoid this unpleasant fate as much as possible by doing your research and getting a quality pair of shoes for your dog.

Shoes That Are Comfortable

Even if you might see a pair of dog shoes that are beyond adorable, that does not always mean they will be the most effective. Check the reviews to see what other people are saying, and remember that your dog’s comfort is much more important than shoes that match their eyes.

Make Sure That Your Dog’s Summer Shoes Are Breathable

In the dead of summer, your dog is going to want all of the heat relief they can get. If their shoes are not made out of a breathable material, heat can still be trapped and cause an unpleasant experience. Dogs can sweat out of their pads, so if boots are used too frequently, it may lead to overheating. 

Get Shoes That Fit Your Dog Correctly

If you get shoes that are either too small or too large for your dog, they could actually end up doing more harm than good. Be sure to check the sizing options and know your dog’s approximate paw size. If you buy summer shoes for your puppy, make sure to buy new ones as they grow to their full adult size.  

These Shoes Are Made for Walking

As long as you do your research and are patient with your pet, the process of finding the perfect dog shoes for summer is sure to be a simple and rewarding one.

If you have any questions about which shoes are right for your dog, their favorite activities, and your immediate environment it’s easy to ask for help. With the KONG Club app, you can reach out to the AskVet veterinarians, and they can help you find the perfect fit.

 

Sources:

A Review of Domestic Dogs’ (Canis familiaris) Human-Like Behaviors: Or Why Behavior Analysts Should Stop Worrying and Love Their Dogs | National Library of Medicine

Functional and Recreational Dog Walking Practices in the UK | National Library of Medicine

How Does the Canine Paw Pad Attenuate Ground Impacts? A Multi-Layer Cushion System | National Library of Medicine

Protect your pet’s feet from heat, burns | Washington State University

How Big Will My Puppy Get?

“Wow! What a beautiful puppy! Oh, he’s going to be a big boy! Just look at the size of those paws!” If you’ve recently brought a puppy home, congratulations! Secondly, if you didn’t get a look at its parents because they weren’t available or you adopted a rescue, then you may be wondering just what to expect in terms of its growth and ultimate size. It’s a reasonable and common question to encounter, and there are a lot of old legends and assumptions out there about how you should be able to tell how big your puppy will grow, based on things like what were just mentioned. Some of them contain a bit of truth, while others… well… they really don’t have much of anything to do with anything.

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Workout With Your Dog

Workout With Your Dog

We all know the benefits of exercise. Those benefits also apply to your dog. According to The Association for Pet Obesity Prevention, 52.5% of dogs and 58.3% of cats are overweight or obese. Being overweight or obese — whether it’s you or your pet — can lead to heart disease, diabetes, arthritis, and even cancer.

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