Dogs love to chew, and it needn’t be destructive. While they are puppies, chewing on one of the best puppy chews (or anything else) is an instinct to relieve the pain for sore gums when they are teething. Older dogs chew to keep their jaws strong, and it also helps their dental hygiene. Sometimes dogs chew to relieve boredom, and it can be a perfectly healthy form of entertainment. And if you give them something edible to chew, they’re gaining satisfaction from the tasty reward. We’d all agree that destructive chewing is inappropriate, but happily there are plenty of tough dog chew toys on the market to distract them from table legs, shoes, sticks (which can splinter and cause mouth or stomach injuries) and other household items. But if you have a particularly enthusiastic chewer, it may seem like he’s chomping through dog chews seconds after you’ve given one to him (unless you get hold of one of the longest-lasting dog chews, of course). These sorts of dogs require safe dog chews designed for aggressive chewers, while for the average or gentle chewer, a strong chew may be off-putting as they won’t gain as much satisfaction from it.
For the aggressive chewer, look for toys made from robust materials such as rubber, silicone or nylon that can withstand your dog’s strong jaw. You also need to ensure that the toy is not make of anything toxic that could be damaging to your dog especially if he’s chewing on it for long spells. Dog toys are not well regulated, and can contain various carcinogenic chemicals – which make them cheaper to manufacture. Opt for natural fibres, such as natural rubber, hemp, cotton, if you can.
A safe chew toy should not break into small pieces, which could cause a choking hazard. Instead you are looking for something that your dog can gnaw on, to satisfy his chewing urges. For these dogged (pun fully intended) chewers, it’s best to give them a toy that is wider than their mouth, so they cannot inadvertently swallow it.
A temptation with aggressive chewers is to give them something really hard because of its durability. However, with a pup that chews so enthusiastically, he may well break his teeth in his efforts to demolish the chew, and then you have an expensive dentist bill. Or the chew itself can break into shards. A good test is to see if you can leave a mark in the chew with your fingernail – that should mean the chew has sufficient give not to shatter, or break your dog’s teeth.
Safe dog chews for aggressive chewers
Size: S–XL (from 4.5kg–45kg dogs) | Material: Natural rubber | RRP: From £33.49 |
Designed by a rubber chemist with 30 years of dog chew toy experience, this heavy-duty toy is made from smooth, sturdy natural rubber. It is safe on dog teeth, and is designed specifically for aggressive chewers, preventing them from chewing off and swallowing shreds and pieces that could cause blockages.
The range of different sizes means there is a goughnut for every breed.
Comes with a lifetime warranty if your dog does manage to damage it, and the tagline “the last chew toy you’ll ever need”. This is H&H’s top pick of safe dog chews for aggressive chewers.
Nylabone Strong Rubber Bone
Size: S or M (from 11kg–16kg dogs) | Material: Natural rubber | RRP: From £5.49 |
Made from natural rubber, this chew toy satisfies a dog’s natural urge to exercise his jaw. It has raised dental nubs to help reduce plaque and tartar build-up. Enticingly for dogs, these chew toys have a delicious beef and gravy flavour throughout the rubber (it isn’t dipped or sprayed), meaning they cannot lick the taste off.
Kong Extreme Goodie Ribbon
Size: Medium breeds | Material: Natural rubber | RRP: £14.99 |
This unique bone shape, made out of durable Kong Extreme rubber satisfies and rewards natural chewing instincts, while providing a long-lasting solution that keeps dogs engaged. You can stuff the Goodie Ribbon with treats or kibble, to make for an even more satisfying chew, and distracting them from the urge simply to demolish the toy. The ridges inside will make getting the nibbles out a mentally challenging puzzle for dogs.
Artisan Gift Co Natural Olive Wood Chew
Size: S–XL (from 5kg–40kg) | Material: Olive wood | RRP: From £9.99 |
Softer than bones and antlers, these wooden chews are suitable for teething puppies from 12 weeks onwards. They are also ideal for aggressive chewers, because they give them the satisfaction of chewing, but do not splinter. Instead they slowly crumble and pulp when chewed.
Plus, they work well as a fetch toy and float on water.
A low-fat, vegan, healthy alternative to bone and hide chews.
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Schitec Dog Chew Toy
Size: Medium to large breeds | Material: Natural rubber | RRP: From £9.99 |
This bone caters for all – it brushes teeth, it’s durable and it even squeaks!
This “tough chew toy” has two in-built squeakers which make a sound when the dog bites. The toothbrush grooves allow you to add dog toothpaste to help clean your dog’s teeth while he chews. There are molar bumps on the toy to clean different teeth and massage the gums to help control plaque and tartar build-up.
This bone is made of food-grade rubber, so is non-toxic and safe for your dogs to chew. Its solid structure makes it almost indestructible even for aggressive chewers.
It features a bacon scent to entice your dog, and attracts them to keep chewing – thereby releasing excess energy, relieving stress and reducing destructive behaviour.
Bamboodles T-Bone Dog Chew
Size: S–L (from 15kg–40kg) | Material: Bamboo fibre and nylon | RRP: From £11.49 |
This durable and long-lasting chew keeps dogs busy for hours, and discourages destructive chewing of unsuitable items. It is made in an easy-to-grip T-bone shape for your dog’s front paws. The bamboo and nylon material mimics wood for authentic and satisfying chewing experience.
The raised nubs help reduce oral bacteria and bad breath. Flavoured with roast chicken, peanut butter or beef for even more satisfaction.
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