Shihpoo Toys to Consider and to Avoid
Shihpoos are naturally inquisitive and intelligent. They thrive when their environment provides them opportunities to explore new experiences and try new activities.
How do you know what toys to pick for your Shihpoo?
Although inevitably a process of trial and error due to your Shihpoo’s unique personality, choose a toy that has these critical characteristics: 1) it is safe, 2) it is durable, 3) it engages both the dog and the human, and 4) it involves some level of unpredictability. Most of these toys are listed on the following page with links to where you can find them:
Irresistible Toys for Shihpoos
Shihpoos in general love to play fetch, love to chew, love to play tug of war, and love to play chase. Finding one or more toys to satisfy your Shihpoo’s love for these activities seems simple enough, but there are other considerations.
Toys Made of Materials to Avoid
You will find no squeaky toys promoted or recommended here. We have plenty of noise in our home as it is, so we get rid of any chew toy that squeaks.
Nor will you find any rawhide toys. They become disgustingly slippery when your puppy is chewing on it and then hard as a rock as it dries.
We do not recommend you get anything toys for your puppy that are made out of rope. It’s not that chewing and eventually swallowing pieces of toy ropes will harm your puppy. Generally, the swallowed rope will pass right through your dog’s GI tract and end up back on your lawn with the rest of his or her waste. Rather, your Shihpoo will likely chew through the rope more quickly than you can keep her or his toys replenished.
You also won’t any plush toys either. We’ve tried all sorts, and not a single one lasted more than a day. Our Shihpoos bite and tug and rip and tear until we are left with a floor scattered with bits and pieces of fabric. Do yourself and your puppy a favor and only get your puppy hard, durable chew toys that won’t fall to pieces. Here are some of our favorites and several we have already tried.
If you have a Shihpoo, you likely took her or his non-shedding coat into consideration. Keeping a clean home is probably important to you. It is for us, and for that reason, we are not going to recommend any toys that “dump” treats or are meant to break to pieces during play. If any of the following toys do have more than one piece, they are not meant to come apart.
Bullibone Nylon Dog Bone Chew Toy-Small
You will want a two-pack of this chew toy because your dog will love these chews. Our two Shihpoos sure have.
Both of our Shihpoos were big chewers when it came to toys. They chewed apart every plush and stuffed toy we originally bought for them. Once we got them a Nylon bone, we thought they had met their match.
Your Shihpoo will likely spend an hour a day or more working on his or her Bullinbone. You will get used to the chomping and grinding sound your puppy will make while holding it to the ground with his paws and chewing on the top.
With time, expect the Bullibone to get smaller and smaller as your Shihpoo chews off bits and pieces. Don’t worry, though. It is completely safe for your puppy to eat.
Nylabone Power Chew Ring
This chew ring will be a hit with your Shihpoo. Unlike the Bullibone chew above, the Nylabone ring will last for a long time in spite of your puppy’s best efforts.
Although the ring will outlast most other toys, the only drawback is that with use and with time, it might become a bit worn. If your puppy chews it into pieces small enough to swallow, you should throw it away immediately. Although digesting bits and pieces of the ring will do no harm at all, larger chunks might lead to choking or might damage to your puppy’s insides. Check your puppy’s ring regularly so you do not give her or him a cracked or broken chew.
Harz Dura Play Bacon-scented Chew Bone
While most durable chew toys are quite hard, the Harz chew bone has an inner foam core with a durable latex foam rubber outer coating. Besides its soft, chewy attributes, this chew bone will attract your Shihpoo because of its bacon scent.
Besides serving as a chew toy, this latex bone can also provide your puppy with plenty of fun as a throw or bounce toy.
Nylabone Power Chew Variety Pack
Dogs love bones. No surprise there.
Our Shihpoos also love peanut butter (they come running from every corner of the house whenever they hear a peanut butter jar being opened). Puppies also love chicken flavored food and bacon. Um, because it’s BACON!
So, what if you could combine these flavors with durable, chewable bones.? That’s exactly what Nylabone has done. Share the red bone if your puppy is craving peanut butter, the yellow one when it’s time for chicken, and the blue one when bacon is on the menu (which would be every day).
Nylabone Puppy Chew Ring
If your Shihpoo is a chewer but not an extreme chewer, you might want to try this chew ring. It’s great for teething puppies, too. Don’t be surprised to find a puppy tooth nearby when your puppy loses one.
Our puppies love this chew toy when we also use it as a fetch toy. If you try to roll it as a wheel, it bumps and jumps along in a way dogs love.
Besides chewing on bones and toys, Shihpoos absolutely love playing tug of war. But what type of tugging toy will work best for your puppy? As mentioned above, we don’t like toys of rope (or partially of rope) or foam or any other material that will disintegrate or turn slimy. Try one of hte following toys to provide your Shihpoo with months of tugging pleasure.
SupPet 4-Piece Durable, Safe Rubber Tug Rings
Our Shihpoos love rubber rings. You can see the rings we found years ago on our recommended toys page. Our oldest puppy has gone months at a time when the only toy he wanted to play with was is set of rubber rings.
Rings can be used to satisfy your puppy’s urge to chew, but they are also idea for playing tug of war. Grab one side of the ring while your shihpoo has it in his or her mouth and you can expect lots of tugging, head shaking, and play growing. Do worry, though. As soon as you let go and swoop up your Shihpoo, he or she will be all licks and cuddles again.
If you order these rings from SupPet, you’ll get four, which seems to be a lifetime supply.
Nollary Single Bendable Rubber Tugging Ring
If you only need a single rubber ring, want a little larger ring (6-8 inches) than SupPet rings above, or you would like to try a bendable ring, this tugging ring from Nollary might be perfect for you.
Although it floats in water and can function as a great throw toy, the fact that this ring bends easily makes it a great tug of war object. Roll it down the hall and, after your Shihpoo brings it back to you, grab it and give your puppy the “Tug” command. Then, hold onto your socks and try not to let your dog drag you back down the hall.
Before playing tug of war, be sure to teach your Shihpoo the “Drop” command. Otherwise, you will never be able to play fetch with your puppy. Her or his default mode will be “tug of war.”
Nerf Set of 3 Tugging Rings
There is something about rings and magic that goes together. It’s no different with your Shihpoo. Get your puppy a set of rings and he or she will magically turn into the most excited and intent dog on earth. It’s as if you could read her or his mind: “Rings! Rings! Tug! Tug! Rings! Rings! Tug! Tug!”
Okay, so a Shihpoo’s vocabulary is rather limited. You get the point, though. Your puppy wants to play tug of war. Day, night, summer, winter, hungry or not. She or he will drop everything to try to sink her or his teeth into one of these rings and see if you can take it away. Just be careful not to pull too hard. Yanking a toy out of your puppy’s mouth can damage a tooth.
Aduck 4.7″ Soft Rubber Ring
Although great for teething puppies and for use as a toy during training, this pliable rubber ring with spikes also serves perfectly as a tugging toy. The tiny spikes allow both you and your Shihpoo to get a better grip on the ring, making your playtime together even more energetic and fun.
This ring is just under 5″ in diameter and can be bent easily in half. The only downside is you don’t get to choose the color. On the other hand, this just means the package delivery will hold that much more anticipation.
Although this ring can also keep your puppy busily chewing alone for an hour or more, never leave your Shihpoo alone and unattended. Shihpoos bond strongly with their families and do not respond well to extended periods of solitude.
Nerf 10″ Infinity Tug Tire Tread Toy
The only of the five toys listed in the section designed specifically for tug of war playtime, this 10″ Nerf toy can work like a charm for your Shihpoo.
It may seem a bit big at 10″, but your puppy won’t care. In fact, it really doesn’t matter which end of the toy you grab and which end your puppy chomps down on. Just put one end close to your Shihpoo and hang on for dear life. Your puppy certainly will.
Ruff Dawg Football Flyer Outdoor Fetch Toy
Your Shihpoo, like most all dogs, loves chasing after balls and throw toys that bounce in unexpected ways. Fetch toys made in odd and oblong shapes achieve this effect.
The Football Flyer is easy to throw, whether in your backyard, dog park, or neighborhood green area.
Although your dog will find the stickiness of the Football Flyer something to enjoy and chew on, you will likely want to wash it off when it arrives and after each use. Because it collects dirt and grass, this toy belongs outside, not inside.
Chesapeake Bay Fetch Balls
Unlike tennis balls that your Shihpoo will tear apart within days (trust us, we know from experience), these balls are made of durable rubber that your puppy will enjoy chasing and retrieving, whether in your living room or your back yard.
They are hollow and come with a small hole so that if you so choose, you can place a treat inside to keep your puppy busy for quite some time trying to get at it.
We like this bulk product because it comes with eight balls and its own pouch. You can place three or four in the bag for a quick trip to the park for some fetch. In fact, as soon as your Shihpoo sees you putting balls in the bag, he or she will start heading for the door, spinning and jumping with excitement all the way.
Chuckit! Medium Ball Launcher
You Shihpoo loves to play with and chew on any ball you might be willing to throw. Such activity can bring great satisfaction to puppy and family alike. The downside? Dogs inevitably slobber on the ball, making it a bit slimy to pick up and throw again.
Shihpoos do not drool or slobber like Bloodhounds, Bull Terriers, Mastiffs, and St Bernards (think Beethoven from the movie series). However, they have saliva in their mouths and will get anything they chew wet and slobbery. Having a throwing handle like this one from Chuckit! means your hands stay dry and dirt-free, whether in your back yard or the neighborhood park.
There are over a dozen versions of the Chuckit! thrower. This is a medium-size version, meaning it fits 2.5″ balls like the Chesapeak throw balls above.
WINGPET Interactive Chew (Bouncy) Ball
Look for these few characteristics in a fetch toy you and your Shihpoo will enjoy for years: 1) durable, meaning not made of fabric or plastic, 2) easy for you to pick up and throw, so nothing too big or too light, 3) small enough for your Shihpoo to grab it in its mouth, so nothing bigger then 2-3″, and 4) something that catches your Shihpoo’s interest and ideally acts different each time.
Put those together and you have the WINGPET bouncy ball and chew toy. Because it is solid, natural rubber, it will last. It is also the right size for your puppy (between 2 and 2.5 inches). And due to its many angles and protruding edges, this ball will bounce differently every time.
Ideally, this is an outdoor ball for your patio, where it will bounce like crazy on the cement, but you can also use it indoors on hardwood floor and linoleum. Even on carpet, you can get some crazy bounces at times.
Being made of rubber, you can also wash it off quite easily. Plus, no annoying, hidden squeeker inside.
Chuckit! Small Ultra Tug Ball
As the name suggests, you could easily use this as a fun tug of war prize to fight over with your Shihpoo. However, the strap also means you can sling the ball for a fair distance when you want to get your puppy some extra exercise. The strap also means it is easier to grab and less likely to get a handful of Shihpoo slobber.
You can also combine this with the Chuckit ball launcher if you get the MEDIUM sized ultra tug. This is the small version, meant for throwing by hand.
If your Shihpoo is a swimmer, this ball also makes for great fun in the shallow end of the pool. Although the description says it is highly buoyant, the will likely stay under the surface or possibly even sink to the bottom.
Throw and Chase Toys
KONG Puppy Chase and Teething Toy
For Shihpoo Puppies and adults alike, this throw and chase toy can provide unending hours of entertainment and satisfaction.
For puppies, this toy is made of a softer rubber to both satisfy his or her urge to chew while protecting his or her gums and growing teeth from damage.
We have the red version of this toy for small adult dogs. When you throw it, outdoors or in, the design causes it to bounce this way and that in unexpected ways. This drives your Shihpoo crazy with excitement, transporting your puppy back millennia to when its ancestors chased rabits through the brush.
Additionally, you can smear some yummy treats inside the hole on the end and leave it with your puppy in her or his crate for comfort and security while you are out for an hour or two. Our Shihpoos prefer creamy peanut butter for there treat.
The downside to adding treats, of course, is that you must clean it regularly to avoid it becoming sticky and filled with crud. But that’s easy enough. Just pop it in the dishwasher.
Be sure you do not get the Medium or Large sizes since your Shihpoo will struggle to do much with these bigger versions. The small and x-small will work great.
Nylabone Power Play Fetch-a-Bounce Dog Toy
This fun throw and chase toy from Nylabone will bounce in ways that more than peak your puppy’s curiosity. Your Shihpoo will chase and “tackle” this toy before heading back to you.
Beware, though. This is not a chew toy. If you let your Shihpoo start chewing on the yellow ball part, he could have it torn apart in a matter of an hour or two. Use this toy only for throwing and fetch. Do not let your puppy draw you into a tug of war with this toy either.
Dougez Dog Frisbee
What would a dog toy recommendation page be without some sort of flying disc? This disc is made of durable plastic and comes with a money-back guarantee. So if it does ever crack or your Shihpoo pokes a hole through it, you can can get your money back, exchange for another disc or trade for another Dougez product.
Our Shihpoos have never seen something flying through the air nearby they didn’t instinctively want to chase. Because this disc is just 9″ in diameter, it should be about the right size for your Shihpoo. Puppies and Shihpoos maxing out at 8 or 9 lbs may struggle to drag this disc without tripping on it, but most will be fine.
Monster K9 Indestructible Football
Even though dog toy companies have experienced, designed, developed and marketed odd-shaped toys for decades that bounce like a natural “prey” to get your dog’s attention, anyone who has ever played football or even catch with a football knows that such a shape was invented well over 100 years ago. Professionals are paid millions of dollars a year to throw it and carry up and down a field every Sunday from August through January and into February. It’s the football!
This puncture-resistant rubber football from Monster K9 will bounce its way into your Shihpoo’s heart and mouth. Toss it around indoors or outside, and your Shihpoo will give chase. Please do not use this ball to play catch with your puppy. Its solid and heavy design means it could injure your puppy’s mouth and teeth on impact.
West Paw Zogoflex Air Dash Dog Frisbee
Durable enough to both fly and allow your Shihpoo to grab and hold it in her or his teeth, yet soft enough to bed while providing chewing satisfaction to your puppy, this flying disc comes in three colors you can choose from.
Because of its wavy edge, dogs can pick this disc up off the ground with their teeth much more easily than the standard Frisbee. However, it is on the heavy side, so you won’t be able to throw it as far as you would a normal disc. Also, you would not want to play catch with your Shihpoo using the Zogoflex because of its weight. You might accidentally hurt your puppy if you throw this disc right at him or her.
It also makes a great rolling toy. And although it is of durable material, I would not recommend you leave this toy in your puppy’s crate or let her or him chew on it indefinitely. Use it as a throw toy, but then toss it into the diswasher to clean it up before storing it until your next fun throw and chase time with your Shihpoo.
If recycling is central to your lifestyle, you will also like the fact that you can return this toy to the small Bozeman, Montana manufacturing company who will, in turn, use the material to create a new dog toy. They even offer a one-time replacement for recycling your old, worn West Paw toys.
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Should you leave your Shihpoos’ toys out or put them away at night? You will naturally not want to leave dog toys everywhere around the house. Besides the mess, they can become tripping hazards. It is okay to leave your Shihpoo’s favorite toy out and easily accessible while putting the rest away to keep interesting.
How many toys should you get for your Shihpoo? Your Shihpoo needs to play with just one toy at a time. Having too many toys on the floor can create anxiety in your puppy. If you have 5 or 10 toys for your Shihpoo, keep all but one stored and take one out at a time to play with.