The 8 Best Toys for Australian Shepherds

Dogs Reviews June 14, 2020
Best Toys for Australian Shepherds!
Avital

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The 8 Best Toys for Australian Shepherds

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Best Toys for Australian Shepherds! The 8 best toys for Australian Shepherds purchased and tested for this review

Unlike the other Shepherd breeds, Australian Shepherds were not named after where they originated! Native to the west coast of the United States, their lineage began as working pups, herding livestock on ranches.

These pups are extremely recognizable. Their eye-catching fluffy coats can have spots and splashes of a range of colors, including white, tan, brown, black, and sometimes grey and red!

At a Glance: Our Top Picks for Best Toys for Australian Shepherds

IMAGEPRODUCT
  • Lightweight and available in many sizes
  • Keeps your hands clean from slobbery and muddy balls
  • Regular tennis-sized balls fit in the launcher
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  • Made from safe, non-toxic material
  • Passes the ASTM F-963 Children Toys Safety Standards
  • Proceeds help rescue dogs from high-kill shelters
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  • Exercises and feeds your dog at the same time
  • Very thick and durable plastic
  • Easy to clean
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  • The silly noises and rolling design will keep your pup engaged and active for long periods of time
  • You will be entertained watching your dog
  • The hard vinyl design creates a strong exterior
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  • Food chamber holds up to 3 cups (depending of the food size and weight)
  • Weighted bottom keeps pups engaged
  • Openings are adjustable
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Characteristics of Australian Shepherds

Like their Shepherd counterparts, these herding dogs love feeling useful and being put to work. Australian Shepherds are extremely energetic.

They require a lot of physical activity to release their energy and satisfy their drive. These pups do not like being alone, and they thrive on interaction with other dogs and humans.

This means that if they are bored or alone for long periods of time, they may act out.

Australian Shepherds are very intelligent and also require mental stimulation. Mental stimulation can be in the form of obedience training and interaction toys. These pups are very social and their mental health depends on being around others!

Toys and Your Australian Shepherd

Finding toys, games, and activities for your Australian Shepherd can be a difficult task! Fun and engaging toys are best for this breed. These kinds of toys will keep them mentally and physically engaged no matter who is home!

But don’t worry! It is possible to find the right type of toy with trial and error, and learning from the experiences of others! We have a lot of experience with our pup who loves chewing everything in sight!

We have purchased many toys over the years. While he has managed to destroy most of them, we have enjoyed watching him interact and play with the toys.

There are many types of dog toys available. You should always consider your Australian Shepherd’s preferences for one type over another, material, price, and durability when researching and purchasing toys. Because, after all, you know your Australian Shepherd the best!

Types of Toys We Considered:

Fetch Toys

Australian Shepherds need tons of physical and mental stimulation. Playing fetch is a great way to accomplish both! Your pup will keep their eye on the ball, race after it, and bring it back to you. This will tire your dog out both mentally and physically. You can play fetch with many different types of toys: rubber balls, plush balls, tennis balls, frisbees, sticks, and more.

Chew Toys

Chew toys are a great and tasty way to keep your Australian Shepherd occupied. There are many different types of chew toys that you can buy. In fact, some chew toys can even help improve dental hygiene. Before choosing the best chew toy for your Australian Shepherd, you should figure out what type of chewer your dog is. Does your dog destroy everything they get their paws on? That will help you figure out the type of chew toy you should get.

Plush Toys

Plush toys can be really fun for your pup. Figuring out your pup’s ability and drive to destroy will help you determine if this kind of toy works for you and your dog. Plush toys are great for smaller dogs and dogs that aren’t active chewers. We tend to look for plush toys that don’t have stuffing and can be washed, so that clean up is always easy.

Tug Toys

Tug and rope toys are great for indoor interactive and dependent play. Playing tug of war requires your Australian Shepherd to exert short and intense bursts of energy that will tire them out! These toys are typically very durable and are available in many shapes, sizes, types, and colors.

Interactive Games

Interactive games are designed to keep your pup entertained and engaged with tasty treats. These toys target your pup’s mind, keeping them busy and happy, sometimes for hours.

Interactive games are known to reduce boredom, separation anxiety, increase independent play time, and slow down your pup’s eating habits. There are many different types available, such as puzzles, treat dispensers and mazes, and more.

Interactive games and toys are a great way to combine fun, training, and treats.

Safety information for Dog Toys:

There are many different types of toys made by many different manufacturers. You should always take the time and do research on the toys because there are no guidelines on dog toy manufacturing.

New toys should always be introduced with supervision. As a rule, you should monitor your Australian Shepherd’s interaction with their new toys to ensure safety. Some toys should always be played with under supervision, for example, chews or bones.

It is important to remember that no toy is completely indestructible. For that reason, you should periodically inspect your dog’s toys for signs of wear and tear.

Here are some guidelines to consider when conducting your own research on dog toys

  • Size: You should always choose toys that fit your dog’s size. Small dogs may not want to play with large toys, and small toys may be dangerous for large dogs.
  • Washability: Keeping your pup’s toys clean is very important. Always check to make sure that the toys can be machine washed, wiped down, dishwasher safe, or hand washed. This is critical in keeping your pup not only happy – but healthy!
  • Material: The material of each toy is very important. You want to make sure that the toy is durable, especially if you have an active chewer, and that it is made with safe material for your pup to lick and enjoy.

You know your playful Australian Shepherd the best, and know what types of toys he or she will like most. Your dog’s activity level – both indoor and outdoor, their ability and drive to destroy toys, and the size of your Australian Shepherd will help you figure out the best toys for them.

How the Toys Were Tested:

We used our own money to purchase all the toys. In other words, the toys were not purchased in exchange for positive reviews.

Each toy was carefully chosen depending on quality, material, price range, and durability.
We spent a few hours each day testing the toys

Our dog LOVED this experiment, he was able to play and interact with so many new toys to create this list.

We have put together this list of The 8 Best Toys for Australian Shepherds. We hope that you and your pup enjoy these toys and give them 5 stars and barking reviews! 

The 8 Best Toys for Australian Shepherds Reviewed and Compared:

ChuckIt! Ball and Launcher

Features:

  • Price Range: Low
  • Material: Plastic launcher and rubber ball
  • Size: 26 inches, 0.16 ounces
  • Made In: United States

Pros:

  • Lightweight and available in many sizes
  • Keeps your hands clean from slobbery and muddy balls
  • Regular tennis-sized balls fit in the launcher
  • Balls are easily wiped down
  • Can be used in water and outdoor playtime
  • Increases your pup’s exercise time by catapulting the ball far

Cons:

  • The ball may be destroyed by active chewers
  • Lightweight plastic material can also be destroyed by active chewers

The ChuckIt! Ball and Launcher really lets you enhance your pup’s fetch game. The lightweight plastic launcher lets you pick up the ball with ease, keeping your hands clean while catapulting the orange and blue ball across the park or any other outdoor space you and your pup go to.

This toy is great for pups and their humans who love being outdoors and playing fetch. With this launcher your pup will be able to run far, search for the ball, catch it, and bring it back to you just in time for you to catapult the ball right back into the field!

You and your pup will LOVE this toy!

Pacific Pup Tug Rope

Features:

  • Price Range: Low
  • Material: Cotton
  • Size: 21 inches, 13.8 ounces
  • Made In: China

Pros:

  • Made from safe, non-toxic material
  • Passes the ASTM F-963 Children Toys Safety Standards
  • Proceeds help rescue dogs from high-kill shelters
  • Acts as playtime dental floss for your pup

Cons:

  • Frayed edges may be torn off

Your dog will love this high-quality twisted and knotted rope. It is tough and can withstand hours of playtime with your lovable pup.

Each purchase of these rope toys benefits a non-profit dog rescue called Pacific Pup Rescue. Pacific Pup Rescue helps rescue dogs from high-kill shelters and find them their forever homes.

We love toys that support good causes. Without a doubt, this is a win-win!

Interactive Treat Ball

Features:

  • Price Range: Mid-low
  • Material: plastic
  • Size: Available in 3 or 4 inches
  • Made In: China

Pros:

  • Exercises and feeds your dog at the same time
  • Very thick and durable plastic
  • Easy to clean
  • Rolls easily
  • Engages your pup’s hunting instincts

Cons:

  • Makes a lot of noise when rolling around
  • Small kibble is best for this toy

The Pet Zone IQ Treat Ball is an interactive and challenging way to engage your pup during mealtime. There are three disk inserts that create various levels of difficulty for your hunting dog.

This treat dispenser rolls around the floor as your pup pounces to retrieve his or her favorite treats. There are many benefits to these types of toys, as they engage your dog physically and mentally.

It also assists your active pup’s digestion. The thorough cleaning of this toy is very easy! All you need is soap and water.

Wobble Wag Giggle

Features:

  • Price Range: Low
  • Material: Phthalate-free vinyl
  • Size: 5.5 x 5.5 x 5.5 inches; 1.28 inches
  • Made In: China

Pros:

  • The silly noises and rolling design will keep your pup engaged and active for long periods of time
  • You will be entertained watching your dog
  • The hard vinyl design creates a strong exterior
  • Large size makes it hard to chew
  • Enforces independent play

Cons:

  • Is not a bouncing ball that can be used for fetch
  • Indoor only toy
  • MUST be played with under supervision
  • A medical emergency could occur if this toy is taken apart and ingested

Watching my pup play with the Wobble Wag Giggle ball for the first time left me laughing hysterically with pain at my sides. The noises that this toy makes really engages your pup’s curiosity keeping them interested as the toy rolls around your floor.

There are three internal tubs that create the sounds, so you never know when and what sound will come out! Because of the inner construction of the ball, it should ONLY be played with under supervision.

This toy is a great way to keep your pup engaged in independent play when you are at home and able to supervise their play. We suggest allowing your pup to play with this periodically, which will also allow you to keep an eye on any damages to the toy.

As with all toys, once this toy shows signs of damage you should dispose of it. Cleaning this toy is very easy. Because of the Phthalate-Free vinyl exterior, all you need is some warm water and a towel to wipe it down.

Bob-A-Lot Interactive Treat Dispenser

Features:

  • Price range: Low-mid
  • Material: Plastic
  • Size: 1 pound
  • Made In: China

Pros:

  • Food chamber holds up to 3 cups (depending of the food size and weight)
  • Weighted bottom keeps pups engaged
  • Openings are adjustable
  • Exercises and feeds your dog at the same time

Cons:

  • Large pups may try to chew on the top
  • Cannot take the dispenser apart, making cleaning difficult

The Bob-A-Lot Interactive treat dispenser wobbles and engages your pup during feeding and playtime. The weighted and anti-slip dispenser exercises and feeds them at the same time.

There are two adjustable openings that allow different sizes of food to be released with different levels of difficulty. Cleaning is difficult because you can not reach the inside of the toy.

The company suggests rinsing with warm water. This type of treat dispenser can reduce boredom and separation anxiety.

LickiMat Boredom Buster

Features:

  • Price Range: Low
  • Material: Food grade TPR rubber
  • Size: 7.4 ounces
  • Made In: China

Pros:

  • Promotes healthy tongues, gum, teeth, and breath
  • Made from food-grade TPR rubber: Nontoxic, durable, PVC and BPA free, and freezable.
  • Licking helps soothe and calm your dog
  • Can reduce boredom and separation anxiety

Cons:

  • The ridges sometimes trap food
  • Not dishwasher safe

The LickiMat Boredom Buster is made from food-grade TPR rubber. So, this means that it is nontoxic, durable, PVC and BPA free.

The design of the mat means that your dog will be licking the peanut butter, yogurt, cottage cheese, or anything else you decided to use for hours – especially if you freeze it! Dogs often lick to ease their anxieties, this action can help calm your dog down, reduce boredom, and separation anxiety.

The ridges also stimulate saliva production, this promotes clean dog tongues, gum, teeth, and breath!

Fire Hose Dog Tug Toy with Squeakers

Features:

  • Price Range: Low
  • Material: Firehose
  • Size: 27 inches long, 3.2 ounces
  • Made In: China

Pros:

  • Made from real durable firehose material that is extremely hard to destroy
  • Three separate squeakers
  • No stuffing! You won’t need to clean up the stuffing if your pup destroys the firehose
  • Well made and cute designs

Cons:

  • Always monitor your dog while playing with this kind of toy
  • Lizard legs can tear off (as seen in the photo)

Fire Biterz toys are made with durable tightly woven layers of the fire hose material. This lets your dog play as rough as he or she can with a toy made to withstand tons of pressure!

The toys are used for all types of playtime, including tug of war. Additionally, the Fire Biterz are not made with stuffing.

This means that if your pup DOES destroy it – because no toy is completely indestructible- there will be no stuffing thrown around your home. No. Stuffing. Thrown. Around. Your. Home!

The squeakers also are durable, long-lasting, and will boost your dog’s playtime excitement.

Benebone Chew Toy

Features:

  • Price Range: Mid-high
  • Material: Nylon and Bacon flavor
  • Size: Available in small, medium, large, giant
  • Made In: USA

Pros:

  • Durable and long lasting chew toy
  • Made for pups that love to chew and have strong teeth
  • Real Bacon flavors are used in production
  • Design of the wishbone allows your pup to chew in a comfortable position
  • Benebone donates products to shelters and rescues across the US
  • Available in 3 flavors: Bacon, Peanut, Chicken
  • Available in 4 sizes depending on the size of your pup

Cons:

  • This chew toy is not meant to be eaten
  • Should always be played with under supervision
  • No toy is completely indestructible, meaning that this toy will need to be retired eventually

This durable chew toy engages the most aggressive chewers with its real Bacon flavors. Your pup will enjoy chewing on it for weeks and maybe even months!

Benebone is extremely transparent with the ingredients in the toy, and what pet parents can expect regarding the toy’s life expectancy. The wishbone chew toy is made with two ingredients: Nylon and Bacon! Benebone also encourages pet parents to reach out with questions about their chew toys.

Made in the USA, Benebone manufactures all of their products in one factory. As someone who has direct experience with peanut allergies, I love that they explicitly write on their packaging and on the Amazon site that those with severe allergies to peanuts should not buy this product.

This is because Benebone also manufactures a toy with real peanuts and there may be cross-contamination.

Final Thoughts:

The best thing that we can do for our dogs is to challenge them, both physically and mentally, to keep them happy and healthy. I hope that you and your dog find this list of The 8 Best Dog Toys for Australian Shepherds helpful and fun!

Avital

Avital lives in Los Angeles and enjoys exploring the outdoors with her pups!
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