Best Toys for Australian Shepherd

It’s fun playing fetch with a stick, but sometimes a little extra fun goes a long way. Dog toys are excellent for stimulating your dog both physically and mentally. The best kinds are fun for both the dog and the owner, allowing you to form an incredible bond.

The dog toy market is pretty saturated, though. We’re going to help narrow down the very best toys for Australian Shepherds, so you can take your pick and get right back to playing with your canine pal. We’ll decide which toy has the best value in terms of plushies, chew toys, chew toys, and more. After all, every dog has a favorite!

Overall Best Dog Toys for Aussies:

 KONG Jumbler Ball Dog Toy

  • Contains an interior tumbling tennis ball and a loud squeaker
  • Comes in two sizes for many dog sizes
  • Handles allow for easy pickup
  • Comes in red, blue, and purple colors
  • Made from tough, colorful rubber

Best Overall – The KONG Jumbler Ball Dog Toy turns a simple game of fetch on its head. Instead of a simple tennis ball or bright rubber ball, you now have a tumbling tennis ball and squeaker to entice your dog into an afternoon-long game.

Plus, the toy comes in three fun colors that send your dog running to fetch it. It also doesn’t matter how big or small your dog is since the toy also comes in two different sizes. The larger size might work fine for smaller dogs who are aggressive with toys.

The ball is also quite durable, able to last for months without any severe chew marks. If you leave the ball outside in the weather, the toy will not fall apart or age too quickly.

Pros:

  • Long-lasting and weather-durable
  • Fun to play with
  • Squeaker and tennis ball make for excellent stimulation
  • Stands up to heavy chewing
  • Easy for dogs to carry

Cons:

  • The squeaker does not last very long
  • Water sometimes seeps inside and can’t get out
  • Might not be durable for larger breeds

Bundle: Chuckit! Ultra Rubber Ball + Classic Launcher Dog Toy

  • Ergonomic handle for better launching control
  • Extra thick rubber core for better durability
  • Includes one ball toy with package
  • Balls come in bright, visible colors

Best Value – Once again, the classic game of fetch gets updated with a launcher toy. Rather than relying on your arm strength (or lack thereof) to throw a ball, you can launch the toy three times farther than before.

A strong rubber core gives the toy better durability, allowing it to bounce back into position after you launch a ball. A rigid indented handle helps keep the toy in your hand, so you don’t accidentally throw both the ball and launcher.

The launcher itself comes with a two-pack of medium-size ChuckIt! Balls, on top of a bonus ball in a different color. The natural-rubber balls bounce well and float in water so that you won’t lose them in the local pond.

Pros:

  • Durable rubber center keeps toy strong and bouncy
  • The launcher can fit tennis balls
  • Regular ChuckIt! balls can stand up to chewers
  • Awesome for high-energy dogs
  • Makes pickup of muddy or slobbery balls easier

Cons:

  • Bonus ball doesn’t stand up to strong chewers

KONG Classic Dog Toy 

  • Has a hollow inside to fill with treats or snacks
  • Slightly unpredictable bounce for more independent play
  • Made from globally sourced materials in the US
  • Bright red color entices dogs to play

Most Popular  – One of the most classic dog toys globally, the KONG Classic Dog Toy is recognizable and versatile. You can extend playtime by filling the hollow center with your dog’s favorite treat, kibble, or even peanut butter or yogurt. It uses an all-natural rubber formula, so it should stand up to heavy-duty chewers.

The bright colors help entice dogs to play and burn off more energy. They also come in a variety of sizes, so your dog can graduate to the next size. Each size gets more and more powerful and durable for your dog’s growing jaws.

The KONG toy is also great for mental stimulation. Simply stuff it with treats and watch your dog figure out how to get them out. Better yet, stuff it with peanut butter or yogurt, freeze it, and then give it to your dog for a sweet treat.

Pros:

  • Durable and hard to puncture
  • Great tool for dispensing treats, peanut butter, or yogurt
  • Long-term use helps with separation anxiety
  • Excellent for calming a dog down
  • Dishwasher safe

Cons:

  • Slightly overpriced

KONG Cozie Marvin the Moose Plush Dog Toy

  • Available in small and medium sizes
  • Built-in squeaker entices dogs to come and play
  • Made with an extra layer of outer material for better durability.
  • Made with minimal filling

Best Plush – Maybe your dog likes to cuddle up with or play tug with a plush toy. KONG’s plush dog toys have minimal filling so that they won’t leave a trail of white fluff in the house. Just in case, KONG plush toys have an extra layer of outer material to prevent your pup from puncturing a hole in their new fuzzy friend.

Plush toys make excellent kennel buddies too. Small and friendly-looking, they can keep your dog company when you’re away or when they need to relax in their kennel.

Keep in mind that a plush toy won’t last very long with heavy chewers. The toy will last much longer if the dog treats it gently. Most customers recommend getting a larger size, no matter the dog, for greater longevity.

Pros:

  • Soft and cute cuddle buddy
  • Stays intact for a while with smaller dogs
  • Suitable for gentle tug-of-war games
  • Only slightly stuffed to prevent messes
  • Has only one squeaker for less noise

Cons:

  • Does not last long with bigger dogs or heavy chewers
  • The squeaker is easy to get at
  • Slightly overpriced

Nylabone DuraChew Textured Ring Flavor Medley Dog Chew Toy, X-Large

  • Chicken-flavored
  • Made from durable nylon for intense chewing
  • Multi-texture design has raised edges and nubs to clean teeth
  • Reduces tartar buildup while they chew

Best Chew Toy – Nothing is better than a multipurpose dog toy! Your dog can chew happily on the toy while also getting their teeth cleaned. The raised nubs and edges remove plaque and tartar while your dog enjoys the chicken flavor.

The chew toy is also circular so that you can use it as a tug toy. You can also roll it along the floor for your dog to catch or pounce onto. It also promotes healthy gums and teeth while preventing your dog from chewing up your carpet, couch, or shoes.

Pros:

  • Long-lasting and durable
  • Great for the price
  • Versatile for playtime
  • Stands up to heavy chewers

Cons:

  • Can be hard to find in outdoor settings
  • Might be too hard for smaller or younger dogs

Nina Ottosson by Outward Hound Hide N’ Slide Puzzle Game Dog Toy

  • Rewards your dog for using the toy correctly
  • Dishwasher safe
  • Provides excellent mental stimulation for dogs who enjoy puzzles

Best Interactive – We’ve all seen babies play with puzzle boards, but probably never a dog. It turns out that they work just as well for dogs too! They provide hours of mental stimulation for energetic or curious dogs.

What’s more, is that this activity board rewards dogs for solving the puzzles. Your dog must learn how to open specific compartments to get treats. To do so, they must lift the cones straight up instead of knocking them over (but make sure not to tell your dog that).

If you wish, you can place different amounts of treats in other places around the tray for various challenges and hours of fun for your dog. Don’t worry about the tray slipping; the non-slip rubber bottom will take care of that.

Pros:

  • Allows for a variety of treat placements and difficulties
  • Keeps dogs occupied for about ten minutes
  • Suitable for smaller dogs with smaller noses
  • Helps dogs slow down with eating meals
  • Allows dogs to let off extra energy while thinking

Cons:

  • Easy to figure out
  • Might not work for larger dogs
  • Requires close supervision for safety

Frisco Rope with Squeaking Ball Dog Toy

  • Combines exercise with mental stimulation
  • Extra loud squeaker helps entice your dog to come and play
  • Rigid rope handle for playing tug-of-war and other games
  • Made from polyester and safe thermoplastic rubber

Best Toy for Aussie Puppies – Some toys are just for catching or tug-of-war, but the Frisco Rope can play all kinds of games. The polyester rope and the thermoplastic rubber ball are good for tug-of-war or fetch. Plus, the squeaker inside the ball helps get your dog in the mood to play.

Keep in mind that you should supervise your pets when they play with this toy. The ball is not suitable for heavy chewers. If need be, you can spot clean the rope or ball, but we don’t recommend throwing it in the washer. Be careful about playing with this toy near water, as it does not float well.

Pros:

  • Good for throwing and tugging
  • Ball and squeaker are both chewable and durable
  • Rope can stand up to tough chewers
  • Dogs can play tug-of-war with each other using the toy

Cons:

  • Squeaker can get annoying after a bit
  • The rope might be heavy for smaller dogs

Other Top Rated Toys for Australian Shepherds

Although we have reviewed some awesome toys so far, there are plenty more for you to pick from. We won’t review these as in-depth as the others, but we’ll provide enough details to come to your own conclusion.

Chuckit! Paraflight Flyer Dog Toy

We all know the classic Frisbee toy, but we need a little variation now and then for our canine companions―especially for those that like to swim. The Chuckit! A Paraflight Flyer has a distinct Frisbee-like shape, but it can also float. If you want to play a classic game of fetch or toss around the pool, or the local lake, you won’t likely lose it to the depths.

Multilayer construction gives this toy better durability. Plus, raised sides make picking the toy up, as well as shaking off dog slobber, a lot easier. If you happen to lose the toy in the grass or the water, the bright colors will help you find it a lot faster. Although the material is sturdy, it’s still soft enough for a dog to carry for a while.

As Seen on TV Wobble Wag Giggle Ball Dog Toy

We might think that only typical squeaky sounds can engage a dog, but we’re wrong. The Wobble Gag Giggle Ball helps entice your dog to play with interactive sounds and colors. Inside the ball, three tubes let out sounds of human laughter when it rolls around, improving your dog’s mood and sense of playfulness.

The toy comes from flexible but strong pet-safe vinyl. The best part is that you don’t need batteries to operate it. It might be a little loud if you have hardwood floors, but dogs of all sizes can still enjoy it.

KONG Floppy Knots Dog Toy

Plushies are cute, but most tend to fall apart quickly, and not stimulate dogs enough. The KONG Floppy Knot toy makes that problem a little easier to handle. The animal design is still cute and floppy, so your dog can thrash them around. The internal knotted rope makeup makes it easier to chew, and the material is a lot stronger than typical plush.

Also breaking the mold, this toy’s body has different textures to stimulate your dog further. Each one has little stuffing, just in case your dog rips the body open and leaves a mess. There’s even a squeaker inside if you want to play a game with your dog. The toy is also a good size for most dog breeds and sizes and holds up to multiple washings.

Benebone Bacon Flavor Wishbone Tough Dog Chew Toy

Sometimes, all you need is a classic chew toy to keep your dog occupied. While the Benebone Wishbone chew toy is nylon, it’s flavored with bacon to keep your dog chewing and expending extra energy. The ergonomic shape helps your dog better grip the toy, so they spend less time fiddling with it. Deep flavor pockets across the whole toy leave every inch tasting like bacon.

Keep in mind that while your dog chews on this toy that they should not eat it. The toy comes from a facility that handles peanuts, so do not use it if your household is allergic to nuts. Owners with aggressive chewers should exercise caution since too much aggression might slightly damage some dogs’ teeth.

West Paw Zogoflex Jive Tough Ball Dog Toy

We all love playing with bouncy balls, but sometimes they need a little extra style. The Jive dog ball, luckily, is bouncy, colorful, and made with no harmful materials. You can choose from among three different sizes, from softball to tennis ball size. There is even a new mini size for small dogs or puppies. Plus, even if your dog likes to chew a little, the ball can stand up to it just fine.

The Jive ball uses durable materials but is still soft on dogs’ teeth. The two grooves make pickup easy but don’t make games of fetch difficult. It’s even the right size for the standard ball launcher and can float in water for the water-loving dog. On top of it all, you can stick it in the dishwasher for a good cleaning.

Petstages Dogwood Tough Dog Chew Toy

No doubt your dog has chewed on a stick in the park from time to time. The Petstages Dogwood toy looks just like their favorite stick. With it, you can allow your dog to chew and reduce stress and anxiety without accidentally swallowing actual stick pieces. The toy combines real wood with durable, safe materials, simulating a real stick. It even has a natural wood smell!

Just like a real stick, you can play fetch and tug-of-war with the toy. It also floats in water so that water-loving dogs can have a great time as well. The toy comes in multiple sizes for multiple dog breeds. Its materials are strong, so it should last against heavy chewers, especially dogs that love chewing on wood.

FAQ:

Now that we’ve gone over some of the best dog toys for Australian shepherds on the market, we need to answer a few questions.

How many toys should I get for my Australian Shepherd?

You’ll have to get to know your Aussie to know how many toys will keep them entertained. The fun of owning a dog is figuring out what kind of toys they like and how many they might need.

Dogs need toys to help reduce stress and anxiety. You might fill a toy with treats or frozen food that they can work through for a few hours. You can put one or two toys in their kennel to cuddle with. No dog toy, however, should replace the time you can spend with your dog.

Feel free to spoil your dog with toys, but make sure you go for high-quality ones to save time and money on finding new ones.

What size toys should I get for my Australian Shepherd?

For the most part, dog toys don’t have small parts that dogs can choke on. When it comes to balls, tennis-ball size is pretty safe for all breeds and sizes. Some toys come in golf-ball-size, but it’s better to play it safe with something bigger. Such a size might work fine for puppies, but not for larger dogs.

Keep in mind that you should supervise your dogs when they first play with some toys. They might accidentally bite small chunks of a toy, and they can choke. Most dog toys don’t break that easily but still exercise caution.

Do Australian Shepherds prefer one kind of toy over another?

Again, with any dog, you’ll have to try out different toys to see what your dog might like best. Aussies are energetic, so any game or activity that will occupy them for a long time will do.

It is a good idea to have some kind of ball or disc that you can throw. Anything that makes an Aussie run for a long time is excellent. If your Aussie likes to swim, pick toys that can float in water. Puzzle toys might occupy them on a rainy day.

Long story short, Aussies don’t prefer one kind of toy over another. Do some research and have fun helping your Aussie choose their new favorite.

Is there any toy that I don’t have to supervise my Australian Shepherd with?

Dog toys help create memories between you and your dog so that you can play together. However, some toys help occupy your dog when you’re not around. Those toys should be sturdy and have very few removable parts. Plushies and activity boards might require supervision until the Aussie gets used to them.

You can leave your Aussie alone with most toys, but only if you are confident they won’t break off huge pieces and choke on them. One-piece rubber toys, and ropes with thick and sturdy fibers, are good examples of safe toys.

If your Aussie is an aggressive chewer, supervise them for a little with all toys to make sure the toy can withstand it. Toys that can quickly come apart will require more supervision.

Can toys help to curb my Australian Shepherd’s chewing habits?

That’s part of the reason why dogs need toys. They not only need mental stimulation but something to help curb their physical urges. Chewing is a natural canine instinct, and toys are a means of helping reduce stress.

Dogs chew because they are bored or anxious, using furniture or shoes as a chew toy. Toys can take the brunt of a dog’s chewing power, so you should find toys that match your dog’s.

Can I rely on dog toys to keep my dog’s teeth clean?

Not all toys can clean your dog’s teeth. Rubber balls or plushies are gentle on your dog’s teeth and aren’t necessarily for chewing. Toys made from nylon, and flavored with bacon or chicken, are tougher and withstand chewing much better.

Some nylon toys that have nubs and raised ridges help promote healthy teeth and gums. They cannot substitute for proper dental hygiene. You still have to brush your dog’s teeth every so often and get them checked at your vet.

Are the toys on this list safe for Australian Shepherd puppies?

Luckily, most of the toys on this list do come in puppy sizes. However, even if some toys are not “puppy size,” they are still safe for most puppies to use. They can nudge them with their noses or drag them around.

If you do buy your puppy chew toys, make sure they are safe if the puppy is still teething. Some nubs and raised edges might be harsh for their teeth or gums.

Conclusion

Australian Shepherds are incredible herding dogs that require plenty of exercise. While not every single toy on this list will work for all Aussies, that’s part of the fun. See what your dog likes, and you can take it from there. The highest quality toys should last many months, even stimulate your dog physically and mentally.

Make sure you exercise your Aussie at least an hour every day. But also make sure to have fun in the meantime! We hope you have fun researching toys on Chewy or Amazon and seeing your Aussie choose a new favorite!

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