What Are Puzzle Toys, and How Do They Keep Your Pet Busy?

Keeping your pet mentally stimulated is incredibly important, especially for hyperactive pets. But how can you do this? It’s easy. Just get a puzzle toy. We explain what puzzle toys are and how they benefit your pet. Learn more by reading this article.

Benefits of Puzzle Toys

Puzzle toys are great for pets. They have many benefits for your pet that promote a healthy and active lifestyle. If you want to find out why check out the list of benefits below. 

Prevent Pet Boredom

Puzzle toys engage your pet’s mind, preventing boredom. And trust us. The last thing you want is a bored furry friend because boredom could lead to all kinds of behavioral issues, such as chewing, barking, getting into the trash, etc. Puzzle toys keep your pet far too busy for those troublesome behaviors.

Makes Your Pet Smarter

Your pet’s brain is like a muscle. The more it gets used the stronger it becomes. So, if you want your pet’s brain to stay in tip-top shape, give your four-legged pal a puzzle toy.

Encourages Underweight Pets to Eat More

Maybe your pet doesn’t have much of an appetite. In that case, puzzle toys that involve food can help. Although eating out of a bowl isn’t very exciting, retrieving food from a puzzle toy is loads of fun. This might motivate your fur baby to eat more, which is beneficial if your pet is underweight. 

Prevents Pets From Overeating

While some pets don’t eat enough, others scarf down their meals. If your pet belongs to the latter category, you probably already know this can cause vomiting and indigestion. The solution? Feed your pet an entire meal in a food-based puzzle toy. This will force your furball to eat more slowly, which will prevent an upset tummy.   

Best Pet Puzzle Toys

If you read the list of benefits in the previous section, you understand why puzzle toys are so great for pets. Now it’s time to start thinking about the type of puzzle toy your own pet would like best. Here are some ideas to get you started.

DIY Puzzle Toys

Don’t want to spend money on a toy? Then make one yourself! Don’t worry, it’s not hard. Check out the examples below to see how easy it can be to make a puzzle toy.   

Food Tube Puzzle

This fantastic idea comes from Preventive Pet. All you need are some empty paper towel rolls and a shoebox. Put the rolls into the box, then place a few treats in a couple of the rolls. Enjoy watching your pet pal try to find and retrieve those treats.  

Shell Game

Here’s another super simple (but very fun!) idea. This one comes from Impact Dog Crates. Start by putting three or more cups on the ground, topside down. Hide a treat underneath one of the cups, then call your dog over. Next, it’s up to your canine to determine which cup has the treat. 

The Water Bottle

This last DIY idea may be the simplest of all. Cut holes into an empty water bottle and put food inside. Your pet’s job is to find out how to get the food out of the bottle.  

Store-Bought Toys

If you would rather buy a toy, we’ve got you covered. Here are some great choices your pet will love. 

Kong Classic

This list of puzzle toys wouldn’t be complete without this classic. And there’s a reason why this toy is so popular. Dogs love it!

Outward Hound Hide-A-Squirrel

Made of plush fabric, this puzzle toy is a great option for challenging your dog’s mind without using treats. The goal of this game is to pull out all the squeaky squirrels. Your furry friend will have a blast!

Snuffle Rugs or Mats

Are designed to encourage dogs, as well as cats, to sniff and forage. Snuffle Rugs or Mats, which are usually made of fleece strips linked to a plastic base with holes in them, create a location where treats can be readily hidden. Hidden goodies stimulate noses to work and natural foraging instincts.

PIVBY Cat Catch Interactive Feeder

Want to add some mental stimulation to your kitty’s meals? Then this is the perfect toy! Just sprinkle the food between the plastic spikes and watch your cat try to get it.

PetSafe FUNkitty Egg-Cersizer Cat Toy

This egg-shaped food dispenser promotes physical activity by rolling around on the ground. Your cat will love batting it all over the place while trying to retrieve the treat inside.    

Legendog Cat Food Ball

Here’s another great toy that helps your pet eat more slowly while also providing mental stimulation. Although your pet will have to work to get the food out, this challenge is just the right level of difficulty.

In Conclusion

Puzzle toys are a must for all pets. Remember, they will keep your fur baby busy and out of trouble, while also adding some fun to your pet’s life. You also will be entertained as you watch your little critter try to solve each puzzle. 

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