Why Your Dog Will Love to Be Puzzled!

by DFS-Pet-Blog on February 3, 2011

**Guest post from Ellen B.**

Looking for a tail-wagging, lip-smacking good dog toy that will keep your dog busy? Puzzle dog toys are a great choice! They stimulate your dog’s mind by making him solve a problem to get treats hidden inside the toy.
Watch this video of my dog demonstrating 3 different puzzle dog toys, and you’ll see that he goes nuts over these toys!

I asked Jodi, the Drs. Foster & Smith Purchasing/Merchandising Manager, about these popular products and she said,

“Puzzle toys are great for dogs and owners too! The dogs love to be intrigued and find the solution to get a treat or toy & dog owners love to watch and interact with their pets. The toys are a win/win and are proven to be great purchases!”

Featured Puzzle Dog Toys That Are All Boredom-Busters:

    Linkables Dog Toys

  • Linkables Dog Toys
    Linkables are made of thick rubber, making it a very durable dog toy. Use a single link as a stand-alone puzzle toy OR connect multiple links together for a greater challenge. Tuck treats inside and let your dog work at getting them out! This toy is a hot item among us dog fanatics that work here at Drs. Foster and Smith!

  • Seek A Treat Dog Toy

  • Seek-A-Treat Wood Puzzle Toys
    Hide treats in treat cups under flaps and sliding disks. Your dog will have to figure out to slide the toy pieces or open the flaps. A great way to provide mental stimulation and reward curiosity.
  • Buster Cube Dog Toy

  • Buster Cube Dog Toy
    Tuck dry food or treats inside the buster cube. Then show your dog how to roll it so food randomly falls out and watch him as he is rewarded for being playful as well as curious. The Kibble Nibble Dog Toy is a similar toy that holds more food.


[CLOSED:] *For a chance to win a Quado Bone AND a Bristle Busy Buddy Bouncy Bone, leave a comment below in this post telling us about how you keep your dog from getting bored AND/OR toys that your dog likes best.

  • Be sure to include what size Bristle Busy Buddy Bouncy Bone you would need for your dog!

TWO LUCKY WINNERS will be randomly selected on Monday, February 7, 2011 at noon CST. (Read this Quado Bone product review to learn more about this bone.)

Puzzle Dog Toys

Related Dog Posts:

Browse the large selection of all dog toys
at Drs. Foster & Smith Pet Supplies!

*Limit: one prize bundle per person. No purchase is necessary to participate. You should be a legal resident of the United States and 18 years or older. Void where prohibited. Shipping to winner will be supplied by Drs. Foster and Smith. To see who won, go to http://www.dfs-pet-blog.com/2011/02/puzzle-dog-toys/. Sponsor: Foster & Smith, Inc., P.O. Box 100, Rhinelander, WI 54501-0100. Employees and their immediate family members are not eligible to enter.

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{ 32 comments… read them below or add one }

Rosemary February 4, 2011 at 8:20 am

Lucky and Ilka would probably love the Linkables and the Buster Cube, but I have a suspicion that Ilka would just eat the whole wooden toy to get to the food. They already have several toys (including some Kongs) that I put treats in. The Kong Stuffin’ Paste is terriffic, just squirt it in, and no putting the dog slobber knife back into the jar of peanut butter. They practically sprain their tounges to get it out.

As for Bristle Busy Buddy bone size, Lucky is 27 pounds, and takes a medium size. Ilka is 49 pounds, and would probably prefer a large one.

Sheryl February 4, 2011 at 1:41 pm

Shelby loves to play ball. Anytime she starts getting into trouble, I throw the ball for her.

Megan loves her Buster Cube. She likes to roll it around and around.

Shelby weighs 15 pounds and would take a small. Megan weighs 60 pounds and would take a large.

Sherry G February 4, 2011 at 1:42 pm

Maddie has the wooden puzzle but has not figured out the flaps yet. She will move the sliders and get the treat but has not figured out how to get the wheels to turn to open the flaps.

Mitch February 4, 2011 at 2:23 pm

Ella likes to play with her Kong and her rope toy. These both keep her busy. She would love the large size Busy Buddy.

Belinda Butler February 4, 2011 at 2:23 pm

My dogs love the calls that can contain small treats or dog food that can roll all over my house.
My dog also loves the Busy Bone. She uses the large one.

Lisa February 4, 2011 at 2:27 pm

Keeley and Hooah love the buster cube, the interactive ball from StarMark and the Tug a Jug. They rather be fed meals from any toy than the plain old boring dishes. I’m considering the quado bone because it looks like it last longer. They can make short work of most bones/treats. That’s why these toys are essential for their mental stimulation.

Melissia K February 4, 2011 at 2:28 pm

My 2 lab/golden mix girls love their wiggly giggle ball! And the ONLY way to keep them out of trouble in the summer time is to give them their water wubbas and let them go for a swim in the pool! Yes, I have had to patch many of holes, but they just LOVE to swim!!! They are definitely big girls, and love big toys!!

tiffany Robinson February 4, 2011 at 2:28 pm

I have a 13 pound min pin..niko is a very intelligent boy..but when boredem strikes we always learn a new trick..its a great way to keep is busy mind occupied

Sherri O. February 4, 2011 at 2:33 pm

To keep my dogs from getting bored, I try to swap out the toys they play with, to keep things “new” for them.

The puzzle toys you discuss are especially great for the winter, according to our dog trainers. They’ve advised that mental exercise can replace, to some extent, physical exercise, and can be especially good in the winter when the weather keeps us from physically exercising our dogs as much as we’d like.

My labs would need a large Bristle Busy Buddy Bouncy Bone.

Thanks, we hope we win!

Martha February 4, 2011 at 2:40 pm

Raven loves to play with peanut-butter filled Kongs, and to keep her busy and interested, she also gets Planet Dog balls in which we stuff pieces of rice cakes (good exercise, little calories).

She likes to push them around the house with her nose, and you haven’t lived until she has brought you a wet and slimy ball or Kong for a refill!

She’s a Lab, and would need a large Bristle Busy Buddy.

Heather B February 4, 2011 at 2:43 pm

I have a 10 month old black lab pup, Kayla, who is sometimes too smart for her own good! She’s ALWAYS looking for more mental challenges, which means sometimes she gets in trouble (there are several holes dug in the back yard haha). I keep her mentally stimulated by teaching her new tricks and switching up usual games (even something simple like fetch) to keep her mind sharp and keep her guessing. We are also a house that loves KONG stuffable toys – I stuff them with healthy things like applesauce, plain yogurt, fruits and veggies and freeze them, then Kayla works at them to get the goodies out! She’s become so smart about it, that as the contents begin to thaw, she throws the toy around, dropping it on the ground so the stuffing gets knocked out! I’m amazed daily by her intelligence! If she were to win the toys, she would need the largest size available haha she’s about 70 pounds and still has a bit to grow! She’s good about letting me brush her teeth, but would enjoy a dental cleaning toy much more!

lynn Krueger February 4, 2011 at 2:53 pm

Maximus loves to be chased around the house and to play hide-and-seek!
He also likes to play tug-o-war!

Kimberly S February 4, 2011 at 2:59 pm

My chocolate lab Kota LOVES puzzle treat toys. So far she has the Kong brand puzzle toys. We even stuff toys/treats into other toys and have her figure out how to get them apart.

Kota is 55 pounds and would probably need a large.

Danielle February 4, 2011 at 3:00 pm

Beeper loves his Buster cube while I am away during the day. As I’m filling it up he gets sooo excited and can’t wait for me to leave. I hear him rolling it around as I walk out the door. He also loves his frozen peanut butter stuffed kong. Anything to do with food and he will LOVE it.

Beeper would like a large Bristle Busy Buddy bone, he has pretty large teeth.

Jamie February 4, 2011 at 3:03 pm

Frisco loves the soft cube with the stuffed toys inside. His favorite is the squirrel tree. I put some treats in there when I leave and he goes crazy trying to get the squirrels out to get to the treats.

We had a buster cube but he never really managed to get it. With my hardwood floors it would just scoot along the floor and not really roll over. Getting treats out of it was difficult.

The medium Bristle Busy Buddy Bouncy Bone would be best for him.

Leila Shasteen February 4, 2011 at 3:07 pm

I had a German Shepherd named Kayla and she loved her tennis balls. Any kind of ball was her favorite thing in the world. I use to play hide n seek with her. I would have her sit and stay and then I would hide her toys. After I hid them, I told her to go find them and she would. This was the start of having her trained in Search and Rescue. I also use to put peanut butter in her kong and she would stay busy for hours. =)

I think my German Shepherd would like the bouncy bone. =)

Jane Trovinger February 4, 2011 at 3:15 pm

We just rescue a toy poodle named Spiderman, he is 9 lbs.
I don’t think he ever had a toy in his life. Right now, we are trying to get him to play with all types of toys, but I bet he would love to try both of the bones you are giving away. I think they would help him out greatly to get used to his new home.

Brittany Wood February 4, 2011 at 3:34 pm

Hi! My dogs keep busy with toy such as Nylabone double action chew and Hartz Bounce and Bite.
Our dachshund prefers squeaky toys like the good and bad Cuz!!!

Jodi Swanson February 4, 2011 at 3:35 pm

Because I don’t work, I’m constantly trying to figure out how to keep our pups (2 mini dachshunds) busy. Sometimes Nylabone durables will keep them busy for a time, but usually I depend on Kongs. I think we have every type ever made and I stuff them with healthy treats. Sometimes frozen, sometimes not. For the ones that are treat despensers, I will use a little bit of peanut butter and at least one treat that won’t come out no matter how hard they try. Sometimes I will hide treats all over the house and make them hunt them up. For non-food entertainment, we sometimes sit on the sofa in front of the front window and watch other dogs being walked by their mom/dad. That’s some good entertainment, I tell you, LOL.

As far as the size goes, I think they would need an x-small. Not just need, but LOVE an x-small.

Catalina February 4, 2011 at 4:32 pm

I play hide and seek with my puppy. She also likes to play nose games where I hide treats around the house and then Tibby looks for them. She has a food ball and some other puzzle toys too.
Tibby would like the Med. size.

Diane G. February 4, 2011 at 4:32 pm

Nikki, my “doghter” who will be 10 in March, loves to play hide and seek. She’s pretty good at finding us, and really good at hiding. Keeping her from getting bored is harder with all the snow and ice we have outside right now. I like to do a scaled-down version of hide and seek inside, where we hide a toy or a treat in another room and have her find it. (This also works on her “sit/stay/come” commands.) Obviously, the treats are easier for her to find. 🙂 I’ve always been curious about how well received a treat hiding puzzle would be, so I appreciate the above video of the little one eagerly working the puzzle toys. My doghter has never liked the rubber toys, she’s always been a fan of the stuffed squeekies, so I don’t know if she’d like the puzzle cubes or not. She takes great care of her toys, and when she loses interest in them, we pass them on to my mom’s dog, who tears the stuffing out of them. 🙂 My doghter is almost 60 pounds, so if she’s chosen as a winner, she’d need a pretty good sized toy. Thanks for the opportunity and the contest!

Dorothy T. February 4, 2011 at 5:06 pm

Nutmeg loves her Buster cube but we spend a lot of time searching for it because it gets lost under the furniture! She also likes her stuffa-kong which can keep her busy for awhile. She has a tree branch we call “chewy” which can be stuffed along the ridges and in holes but she is so smart, she gets all the treats in no time. Nutmeg would like the busy buddy bouncy bone. I bet she would like the linkables too!

Kaitlyn Cepeda February 4, 2011 at 5:07 pm

I bought my boys their first puzzle toy this past Christmas. With little yogurt treats in it, they love it! The only problem is that Riley is much quicker than Blackfoot at figuring it out, so I have to keep them separate when it’s Blackfoot’s turn. Otherwise, Riley will rush in and do the puzzle (and eat the treat) before Blackfoot knows what hit him!
We would love either a medium or a large-sized Bristle Bone. Thanks!

Kelly Ann T. February 4, 2011 at 6:53 pm

We still go for a walk in our woods everyday even if it is only for a short walk. I also play hide the treats where my have to go outside while I hide the treats and then they come in and find them. I use very small treats so I can hide quite a few for my Alaskan Malamutes. I also play with them inside with tug toy.

Sarah February 4, 2011 at 7:42 pm

The linkables would be perfect for Katie, Australian Cattle Dog, she is just learning to play since we adopted here last summer. She was tied up and abused and never learned how to play. She’s, at last, learning how to, and I think a puzzle treat toy would be perfect for her. She is extremely intelligent and the reward of a treat would help her figure out the whole playing.

Trena February 4, 2011 at 7:57 pm

My Boxer loves treat toys, working for food, and has been a part of his life since I have owned him. Puzzle/treat toys works his mind, body, and keeps him from being bored. Owning a working breed with high drive it is important to keep him working, and busy.
We have several treat/puzzle toys that I alter in order to keep them new, and exciting for him. One item that I hope to eventually add to his collection is a seek-a-treat puzzle toy. Will go well with his tricky treat ball, buster cube, bob-a-lot. Kongs, Kong Wobbler.
Baby loves searching the house, yard for treats when I hide them, and searching through boxes after I have hidden treats in them for him to find. Baby is wicked smart, curios, and loves the challenge that comes from the treat, and puzzle toys.
Regarding the Bristle Busy Buddy/Bouncy Bone I would say he would require the largest size available. Than you for the contest they are fun….

Brooke February 4, 2011 at 8:48 pm

My rescued Pomeranian absolutely LOVES learning new things and figuring puzzles out. He actually has a Busy Buddy Squirrel Dude and Busy Buddy Twist n Treat which are his favorite puzzle toys. I alternate the two and put his dinner or cheerios in it to keep him occupied. Even when they are not filled with food he still loves to carry Squirrel Dude around and chew on it. We’re big fans of the Busy Buddy line so a small Bristle Buddy would make a wonderful addition to our collection.

I also do clicker training with him. He gets very excited when the clicker comes out! I do shaping with him which means he has to figure out what he needs to do in order to get a click and treat. It’s so much fun to watch him, and extremely satisfying for both of us when the lightbulb finally goes off and he gets it. I’m always trying to think of new things to teach him. He absolutely loves learning and learns quickly.

One thing I found is that he is a natural at agility! I signed him up for an obedience/agility combo class not knowing what to expect or how he would react. He was a complete natural at agility and acted like he had done it before! I have fun setting up makeshift obstacles at home for him to go over, around, and through. I have a hoola-hoop for the tire, a broomstick for the hurdle, and an ottomon for the pause box.

Other occupiers include bully sticks, lamb ears, rolled pork hide, Kong stuffable toys, ice cubes packed with yummy treats (which are great in the summer!), and a sand box to dig in and find buried toys.

Susan February 5, 2011 at 5:23 am

We live in an apartment and it can be a challenge to keep the dogs busy when they can’t go outside as much and they tend to get bored sometimes. Usually we have tennis balls and other toys to play with as well as chews. Sometimes I’ll hide and toy and have the dogs go try to find it. It keeps them busy for awhile.
I’ve never heard of the Busy Buddy Bouncy Dog Bone till now, it’d be wonderful to win one and I’m sure my dogs would love it!
If we won the size we would need for the Busy Buddy Bouncy Dog Bone is Large.

KevinJimeno February 6, 2011 at 11:10 pm

These kind of puzzle are good for your dog i like this video.

brittany February 7, 2011 at 8:14 am

Ooh my dogs would love this!

I buy my dogs raw bones at the store, and they gnaw on them. We also bought a jolly ball, they love it!!! 😀

Dawn February 7, 2011 at 9:58 am

We are continually seeking toys that challenge our dog, Amber. She enjoys a good challenge, in fact she even shows off when she gets her toy empty. And of course, any type of chewing toy such as a raw bone save our furniture, shoes and so much more! They also give Amber something to destroy without getting in trouble.

Ellen B. February 7, 2011 at 1:33 pm

Thank you to everyone for sharing a bit about your dogs with us. One thing is for sure, dogs love toys and fun! The 2 winners of the giveaway are Trena and Jane Trovinger. Congrats to both of you, and I will contact you by email to get your shipping information.

Thanks again to everyone for joining us here on our blog and sharing your stories.

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