This blog would be amiss if I didn’t talk about one of the most basic yet incredibly useful toys you can get your pup. The Kong.
I am doing a Kong series and today’s post is simple : What’s a Kong and why is everyone so obsessed with it?
A kong is a hard rubber, pineapple shaped toy that you can fill up (stuff) with food and different food mixtures.
Here’s how Kong explains how it came about:
One day, while working on a VW Bus, Joe began throwing out car parts to Fritz to lure him away from those rocks. Fritz was immediately taken with a rubber suspension part and dropped it in Joe’s lap to play. The erratic bounce and toughness of the rubber inspired Joe.
We’ve been making KONGs from our own proprietary, pet-safe, built-to-chew rubber ever since.
You can get these around 12 American dollars a pop if you get the large size, which is what I recommend for any dog above 15lbs. Essentially, its a great first puzzle toy to introduce to your dog. Great for getting your dog to think and work to be able to get the goodies inside. That equates to slower eating time, entertainment and some peace while they are entertained.
The whole idea behind it (and what we trainers love) is that we can use meal time as an activity and that throwing food in a bowl is just so boring for Fido!
If our dogs are wired or intense in any way it’s an easy change to make in their routine by investing in the Kong and changing up meal time. Don’t get me wrong, its not the end all be all, but it is a different way of thinking about things: “Hmm, maybe my dog is bored and needs to be engaged and challenged a bit more.”
Wouldn’t you go crazy too if you were stuck inside all day?
Kong Company says:
The way it bounces keeps them engaged and ready to play. It has a soft mouth feel for a satisfying chew and, of course, it’s super durable. Owners love KONG too; they can stuff it, throw it, leave it out in the yard.
Although dogs can chew on them, I don’t recommend you just leave them out. I keep mine stuffed and in the freezer and when my dogs are done with them I pick them up. Best to play it safe because energetic heavy chewers can easily destroy them.
Stay tuned for the next post on Kongs, where I show you how to “stuff a Kong” and share some recipe ideas.
To browse through lots of recipes check out my Kong Recipes board on my Pinterest @camidogtraining