Dog Product Reviews

Top 50 Best Interactive Dog Toys

Using interactive dog toys is the most sure-proof way to keep your pup mentally stimulated, which means a happier, healthier dog. A mentally stimulated dog is also less destructive. We tried some of the most popular toys available to pick the 50 best interactive dog toys based on their ability to stimulate the dog’s brain, their popularity among dogs and owners.

The importance of interactive dog toys

Any toy (as long as it’s not dangerous) is better than no toy for dogs, but interactive dog toys serve a more special purpose – brain stimulation. Studies have observed how the lack of mental stimulation results in serious health issues in dogs, both physical and mental: boredom, apathy, stress, depression which then manifests into destructive behavior, obsessive compulsive behavior and even aggression (1, 2, 3).

Further research has proven how environmental enrichment and mental stimulation through a variety of methods, including some of the best interactive dog toys, can stave off these mental issues in dogs, cats and other animal models (4, 5, 6, 7). These studies also observed how after just a little mental stimulation with toys, dogs become less fearful, less anxious and less stressed.

The best mental exercise for the dog is play with the owner, but that’s not always possible. The design of best interactive dog toys is structured specifically to occupy the dog’s brain and provide mental exercise. They aren’t simply for chewing but rather for the dog to figure something out within the toy or interact with it. It occupies your pet’s attention and thereby enrich the environment. Some toys are better than others at this, so here are the 50 best interactive dog toys you can buy today.

Top 50 Best Interactive Dog Toys

Trixie Pet Products Flip Board

Price: $9.19
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This isn’t a toy that your dog can play with alone, but it’s one of our favorite toys for mental stimulation. Grab a few treats that have a good scent to them and hide them under the flaps, cones, and slides, then let your pup try their paw at uncovering them. Trixie Pet has a few variations on this puzzle that increase in difficulty level and hone various discovery skills.

Outward Hound Hide-A-Squirrel

Price: $19.39
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If your pup loves soft toys (and isn’t a toy destroyer), the Outward Hound Hide-A-Squirrel is a great choice. A large plush log with multiple openings, the Hide-A-Squirrel comes with multiple plush squirrels that can be hidden inside the log and pulled out. Each squirrel squeaks and our favorite thing to do is keep hold of the toy, let our pups pull the squirrels out one by one and as they pull them out, we feed them back in through the back. It’s a never-ending squeaky game of fun.

KONG Extreme Dog Toy

Price: $13.99
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You may not think of the Kong as an interactive toy, but it is a great way to encourage your dog to use their foraging instincts. Just use the Kong to hold treats or frozen snacks and let your dog work on digging them out! It’ll keep your pup occupied and it’s a great distraction for those first few minutes when you have to leave the house to get to work.

KONG Wobbler Treat Dispensing Dog Toy

Price: $19.99
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The KONG Wobbler is one of our top favorite best interactive dog toys because it’s one of the few toys that can keep a working dog busy when you have things to do. Like the “Boppo Clown” that gets knocked down and pops back up, as your dog rolls the Wobbler around it pops back up and as it does it dispenses small treats or kibble. We also love this one for slowing down fast eaters at dinner time.

Noyal Interactive Dog Toy – IQ Treat Ball

Price: $8.99
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Made from non-toxic, natural rubber this toy is a ball inside a second ball with multiple openings all you have to do is sprinkle some kibble inside the larger ball. Watch as your pup rolls the balls around and works at getting the kibble lined up with the openings so that they can spill the food out onto the floor.

Price: $38.00
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Another puzzle toy, the Interactive Dog Food Puzzle Toy features slides and cones with small hiding spots under each and it works by providing your pet with treats. Just grab some delicious smelling dog treats, hide them in each chamber, and let your pup sniff them out and maneuver the puzzle pieces to get to them. This isn’t a toy you can leave your pup to play with alone, but it’s a fun one to play with together!

Nina Ottosson Outward Hound Dog Puzzle Toy

Price: $19.99
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Another favorite of ours, this Nina Ottosson puzzle toy is a little more advanced but follows the same principles as other puzzle toys on our best interactive dog toys list. When we love most about this toy is that the pieces don’t come away from the board so you don’t have to worry about losing them!

ThinkPet Treat Dispensing Toy IQ Ball

Price: $17.84
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The ThinkPet treat ball is a natural rubber ball with small holes around it. All you need to do is sprinkle some kibble inside those holes and let your pup get to work. As they roll the ball around, they work to release the kibble pieces. We love this dog toy because it can be used to slow down mealtimes but it also incorporates activity into interactive play.

Busy Buddy Squeak N Treat Troog Dog Toy

Price: $14.99
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We are in love with this treat dispensing dog toy because it not only encourages play and foraging but also because it squeaks. Not many treat dispensing toys include a squeaker, but this jack-shaped toy has it all and is one of the more unique best interactive dog toys. The one thing we would change? That vanilla scent! Scented toys just don’t agree with some pups so keep that in mind.

Hipat Dog Treat Ball

Price: $9.99
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We’re torn over this one, but a lot of pet parents love it so we had to keep it on the best interactive dog toys list. Another treat dispensing ball, we love that this one is made from safety-tested food-safe rubber and that it encourages your dog to work a little harder to get treats through the single smaller hole. What we don’t like, what our pups don’t seem to like, is the “subtle scent”. We aren’t sure what it is but it’s enough to get a hungry Labrador to leave it full of treats in the corner of the room.

Pet Zone IQ Treat Ball

Price: $9.05
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This is another toy that makes the best interactive dog toys list by recommendations from other pet parents, but one that we’re not so sure about. The IQ ball dispenses treats but it makes your pup work harder to get them because they have to work them through an interior trap to get them to the dispensing hole. What we don’t love about this one is the noise that this one makes! It can give you a headache and it’ll definitely scare off the more timid pups out there.

PAW5 Wooly Snuffle Mat

Price: $39.95
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A fun way to slow down your pup at mealtime and to encourage them to utilize their natural foraging skills, and we love this mat. The only type of best interactive dog toys on this list, it’s fairly simple as far as snuffle mat designs go, but it’s easy to use, fun for your pup, and washable so you don’t have to worry about keeping it clean.

Trixie’s Mad Scientist for Dogs

Price: $14.88
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The Trixie’s Mad Scientist toy is designed to work your dog’s problem-solving skills while taking advantage of their desire for treats, and it’s another very unique option among the rest of best interactive dog toys here. Put small treats in the tubes and watch as your pup figures out which tubes hold the treats and nuzzles them to tip out their prize! You can even make the game trickier by mixing and matching caps for the tubes.

Nose-It! Flex Plus

Price: $16.00
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The Nose-It! Flex Plus is made from phthalate free, food-safe material and features a treat dispensing hole that you can load with treats or kibble. The unique shape gives your pup something to hold on to as they play and lets them control the toy completely as they do. What makes this toy stand out among the other best interactive dog toys listed? It can hold up to 2 cups of food and is the perfect way to slow down your speedy eater.

Joe’s Home Dog Snuffle Mat

Price: $29.99
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Another snuffle mat, this alternative option offers your dog the opportunity to develop their nose work – hide and find work based on scent – as well as indulge their natural foraging instincts, making it one of the best interactive dog toys. The mat is available in small and medium so it’s not ideal for larger dogs, but it is a great way to keep your small and medium-sized dogs busy and it’s a fabulous training tool too!

Brick Treat Puzzle Dog Toy

Price: $10.71
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And yet another puzzle toy from Outward Hound, this board has removable bone pieces as well as flip open sections that can be used to hide away those delicious treats. You definitely can’t leave your pup to play alone with this toy, but it is a great tool to stimulate your dog mentally by using those scent and problem-solving skills.

Interactive Dog Ball by FurryFido

Price: $14.99
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This is another ball inside a ball toy that can be used for regular ball play but it can also be used to dispense treats or kibble for your fast eaters. The ball is natural rubber and promotes dental health in dogs, but what we love most is that this ball comes with a lifetime money back guarantee, so if you’re unhappy with it – return, and pick something else from the best interactive dog toys list instead.

SNiFFiz SmellyMatty Dog Food Puzzle Mat

Price: $53.99
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One of the few snuffle mats available that is suitable for all sized dogs and can be ranked among the other best interactive dog toys, this is an incredible way to provide mental stimulation for your dog. Hide treats or kibble around the mat features and let your pup work out how to find them. This isn’t just a game though, it’s the perfect tool for training a scent work dog too.

StarMark Bob-A-Lot Interactive Dog Toy

Price: $19.01
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This toy is like the Kong Wobbler, it has a weighted bottom and a screw off top. You just unscrew the top and drop in…

About the author

Jessica Goldberg

Jessica Goldberg

Editor for @DogCoutureCNTRY | Love my outdoors yoga | Family, friends and of course puppies dogs. Go figure! social media geek at heart community manager. Follow @JessicaGoldb

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