Australian Shepherds are one of the most driven and active working dog breeds. They need to burn off their energy, whether by running, playing, or chewing. So, what kinds of chew toys are suitable for Aussie Shepherds?
The overall best chew toy for Australian Shepherds is the KONG Goodie Bone. It is durable and can withstand medium chewing. It also allows you to insert treats to maintain your dog’s interest in the toy.
In this guide, I evaluate the best chew toys for Australian Shepherds. I break down each product in detail so you can see if it’s right for your pup. I also explain how to minimize and avoid any destructive chewing.
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Product Reviews for Australian Shepherd Chew Toys
Best Overall: KONG Goodie Bone
The KONG Goodie Bone is the overall best chew toy for Australian Shepherds. One of its best features is the ridged holes. These allow you to put treats inside that your dog can spend long periods trying to extract. I like to put frozen carrots and apples in mine for my puppy.
Like other Kong products, it is made of durable rubber that you can also wash easily. You can put it in the dishwasher or do it by hand. However, you may struggle to clean properly inside the treat holes. I recommend using high-pressure water for this part.
The exterior is durable enough to withstand light to medium chewing. However, it may not stand up to destructive chewers. Kong has a heavy-duty model for power chewers, so I recommend this alternative if your Aussie is determined to destroy the toy.
Overall, the Goodie Bone is a simple but effective chew toy. The rounded rubber edges are enticing enough for some dogs or you can stick food inside. Many dog owners like to fill the holes with peanut butter or canned food to keep their pup engaged for longer.
- Its rubber is durable and long-lasting.
- You can stuff treats inside.
- The dual-purpose design could keep your dog occupied for longer.
- You can wash and clean the bone’s outside easily.
- Kong is one of the most trusted brands.
- It is reasonably priced.
- Super powerful chewers may be able to break the rubber over time.
- It can be challenging to clean inside the treat holes.
Savvy Pick: KONG Tire
The KONG Tire is the Savvy Pick for Aussie Shepherds. It could be an excellent option if you are looking for a combination toy. It can work as a simple chew toy, you can throw it for your pup to retrieve, or you can fill the inside with treats and use it as a slow feeder.
It has a simple but durable tire shape with a rubber material. The outside is ridged and has different textures for your dog to latch onto. The inside is semi-hollow, allowing you to fill it with treats that drop out or peanut butter. All of these characteristics can help keep your Aussie engaged for more time.
You can also use it as a fetch toy. The tire is reasonably lightweight and has a hole in the middle, allowing your Aussie to latch onto it. If your pup loves chasing moving objects, then you could make a game out of it.
This chew toy is suitable for destructive dogs because of the durability of the rubber. However, it may be too firm for pups that prefer gentle nibbling. You should consider your dog’s chewing style before choosing this option.
- It is versatile and multi-functional.
- You can put treats inside the tire.
- The durable rubber is suitable for destructive dogs.
- It has ridged edges for your dog to grip.
- It is light enough to throw.
- It is one of the pricier options on this list.
- The toy may be too firm for gentle chewers.
Bargain Pick: Hartz Chew ‘n Clean Dental Duo
The Hartz Chew ‘n Clean Dental Duo is the best budget chew toy for Australian Shepherds. It works as a regular chew toy and cleans your pup’s teeth at the same time. If you’re concerned about your Aussie’s dental health, it could be a decent investment.
It has a smooth nylon outer that your dog can grind down and chew. Beneath the exterior, the toy has bacon flavoring and DentaShield. The latter ingredient can avoid plaque growth, while the overall chewing motion could massage your dog’s gums and freshen his breath.
If your dog is a light to medium chewer, this could be a suitable option. However, it may not withstand destructive chewers for very long. The edges can become sharp as your pup grinds them down, which could be a potential hazard.
Overall, this chew toy is excellent value for money and suitable for Australian Shepherds that are food-motivated. However, I recommend supervising your pup with a toy like this one. It could be dangerous as it breaks down, and it’s better to be safe than sorry.
- The chew toy is excellent value for money.
- There are various pack sizes.
- The entire toy is digestible.
- It includes real bacon flavoring.
- It includes DentaShield to prevent plaque.
- It may not suit aggressive chewers.
- The edges can become sharp.
Best Pick for Gentle Chewers: West Paw Zogoflex Bumi Dog Tug Toy
The West Paw Zogoflex Bumi Dog Tug Toy is the best option for gentle Australian Shepherds that don’t chew too hard. Because of its soft but durable material, it isn’t abrasive on your pup’s teeth and gums.
It stretches and flexes, allowing you to use it in a variety of ways. You can engage your dog in a spirited game of tug-o-war, throw it for your pup to retrieve, or allow your Aussie to chew on it alone. It is difficult to lose in snow, long grass, or at night because of its bright color.
The material is free from latex and is also fully recyclable. The company will take the toy off your hands when you’re done with it. Therefore, it could be a great option if you are environmentally-conscious and worried about landfill.
However, this chew toy is not one of the cheapest options for Australian Shepherds. It also only has two size options: small and large. If you have a more petite Aussie, the large size may be wider than his mouth.
- The toy is flexible and stretchy.
- You can use it to play fetch or tug-o-war with your dog.
- The toy is latex-free and recyclable.
- You can wash it in the dishwasher.
- The bright color is visible and difficult to lose.
- The material is soft on dog’s mouths and gums.
- It is one of the more expensive chew toys for Australian Shepherds.
- There are only two size options.
Best Pick for Destructive Dogs: Monster K9 Ultra-Durable Chew Toy
The Monster K9 Ultra-Durable Chew Toy is the best option for destructive Aussie Shepherds that tear apart other toys. It uses industrial-grade rubber in a simple tire shape, which is strong enough to handle any level of chewing.
Because of its round shape, you can initiate tug-o-war games, play fetch, or give it to your Aussie to chew on. The exterior is smooth but firm, letting your pup chew hard on it without damaging the toy or his teeth.
The rubber is non-toxic and completely safe. Therefore, chewing on the exterior should not be harmful to your dog or affect his bowel movements. However, I recommend supervising him at first to see if he safely interacts with the toy.
The company offers a lifetime replacement or refund warranty. They advertise the toy as indestructible, so they back this up with the guarantee. If your pup happens to tear apart the tire, you can contact their customer service team.
This warranty is essential because the chew toy doesn’t come cheap. It is one of the less affordable choices, so you don’t want to waste the money. However, it is overall extremely durable and could be an excellent investment if you are sick of your Australian Shepherd destroying things.
- The material can withstand medium to heavy chewing.
- It includes a lifetime replacement or refund warranty.
- The rubber is non-toxic and safe.
- It can be a chew toy or a fetch toy.
- The smooth exterior could be enticing for your dog.
- It is one of the less affordable chew toys for Aussie Shepherds.
Best Pick for Puppies: Nylabone Puppy Power Chew Teething Rings
The Nylabone Puppy Power Chew Teething Rings is the best option for Australian Shepherd puppies. All pups go through a teething period as their baby teeth drop out and the adult teeth come in. This process can be uncomfortable and motivates your dog to chew on everything in sight for relief.
The Nylabone toy has a series of different teething rings joined together in a single toy. Each ring has different textures that your puppy can focus on. It also has an artificial bacon flavor to motivate your pup further to choose the toy over furniture.
It can clean your puppy’s teeth at the same time. The firm but soft nylon massages your dog’s gums and can prevent plaque from forming. It is also hard enough to withstand damage from heavy chewing.
The main downside of this chew toy is that your Australian Shepherd will grow out of it. Once he gets larger and passes the teething period, the toy will be too small for his mouth. Luckily, the item is pretty affordable, so it isn’t a substantial financial investment.
Overall, investing in a quality chew toy like this one is essential when your puppy is teething. I also recommend freezing wet rags, carrot sticks, and pieces of apple for your pup. The cold numbs the gums and can provide some relief.
- The nylon is durable but soft for small mouths.
- There are various textures to chew on.
- It has a bacon flavor.
- It can clean your dog’s teeth.
- It suits puppies that have a robust chewing style.
- The chew toy is affordable.
- Your puppy will grow out of it.
Best Long-lasting Pick: Benebone Maplestick Real Wood Durable Dog Chew Toy
The Benebone Maplestick is the best long-lasting chew toy for Australian Shepherds. Some dogs, including mine, are naturally drawn to chewing on sticks and wood. However, sticks can splinter and cut your pup’s mouth, so this chew toy is a safe alternative.
It is made of genuine maple wood, so it has the flavor and smell that attracts many dogs. However, unlike regular sticks, it doesn’t splinter while your Aussie chews on it. Therefore, it is a safer option that lasts for much longer.
The bone has a unique shape that allows your dog to grip it and hold it up with his paws. This will enable him to get better leverage and try out new angles. It is reasonably heavy, but you can use it to play fetch as well.
However, you should supervise your dog with this chew toy. Especially as your Aussie grinds it down, the smaller pieces may get stuck in his throat. If your pup is an enthusiastic chewer and gulper, you will have to remove the toy after a while.
- The chew toy is moderately priced.
- The shape is easy for your dog to grip while chewing.
- It is long-lasting and suitable for destructive chewers.
- It has natural maple wood and doesn’t splinter easily.
- It could be a choking hazard once your dog grinds it down.
Buying Guide: How to Choose the Best Chew Toy for an Australian Shepherd
What Is the Best Australian Shepherd Chew Toy?
There are some characteristics to consider when choosing a chew toy for an Australian Shepherd:
- Size: Aussie Shepherds can weigh between 40 and 65 pounds (18.1 and 29.5kg), depending on their sex and parents. This makes them a medium-sized breed, and you need appropriately-sized chew toys. Medium or large chews allow your Aussie to enjoy chewing without the risk of swallowing the item.
- Durability: Australian Shepherds are mouthy and high-energy. Although they are not the largest dogs, they can destroy chew toys if they have the motivation. Suppose your Aussie is a particularly destructive chewer. In that case, you will need to go to extra lengths to invest in durable chew toys.
- Dental health: Some chew toys can clean your dog’s teeth while he chews them. If you are worried about his dental health, it could be worth investing in this variety.
- Textures: Most dogs enjoy different textures and smells. Toys that have varying surfaces can keep your pup engaged for longer and focusing on chewing. If your Australian Shepherd gets bored quickly, you should consider this factor.
- Food and treats: Many chew toys allow you to stuff food or treats inside. If your dog is food-motivated, this can keep him engaged for longer.
- Fetch games: Due to their nature, Australian Shepherds love to run and chase. If you choose a chew toy that you can also throw and play fetch with, your Aussie may form a closer attachment to it.
What to Avoid in an Aussie Shepherd Chew Toy?
There are some features to avoid when choosing a chew toy for an Australian Shepherd:
- Soft plastics: Your Aussie may be able to tear apart soft materials like plastics. If he swallows them, they could cause a blockage or stomach upset. Non-durable toys will also not last very long, so they’re a poor financial investment.
- Plush toys: Teddy bears and other plush toys are not designed for dogs that like to chew. Your pup may break them easily or, like mine, tear out all of the stuffing. The inner materials can be toxic if your dog eats them, so it’s better to avoid them.
- Rope toys: Rope toys are very popular, but they can be dangerous if your dog tears them apart and eats the small pieces. The strands can stick in your pup’s intestines and cause bowel problems or get stuck in the throat and make your Aussie choke.
- Small items: Aggressive chewers may try to eat the pieces that they tear off a toy. They may also try to swallow the entire chew toy. Therefore, you should stay away from small items to avoid choking hazards.
- Rawhide: Rawhide is a popular bone option that you can find in many pet stores and online. However, if your dog swallows large pieces of it, he may choke or suffer internal problems.
- Very hard materials: If your Aussie Shepherd chomps down on a hard surface, he may break a tooth. Different hardnesses suit varying chewing styles, so pay attention to how your pup interacts with toys.
Do Australian Shepherds Chew a Lot?
Australian Shepherds can chew if they are bored. This breed needs a lot of physical exercise, with a minimum of 30 minutes every day. A simple walk is usually not enough for the average Aussie Shepherd, and they require more intense activities.
If your dog is not receiving enough physical exercise or mental stimulation, he may become destructive. Many dogs choose to chew so that they can let out some of this excess energy. Therefore, the average Australian Shepherd does not chew more than the norm, but a bored dog might.
Before you can stop your Australian Shepherd from chewing, you need to figure out why he is doing it. As previously mentioned, many pups chew because they are bored. Therefore, the first step is to make sure your Aussie gets enough exercise and attention every day.
If you have a young puppy, he may be chewing because he is teething. This is a natural process that will pass in some months. In the meantime, you will need to direct your puppy to appropriate chew toys.
Australian Shepherds may also chew because of stress or separation anxiety. If you suspect this is the issue, I recommend going to your vet for advice. Anxiety can be a severe problem if you don’t address it correctly.
Lastly, your dog may just like to chew. If this is the case, you need to teach him what is okay to chew and what isn’t.
How to Stop an Aussie Shepherd from Chewing?
If your Australian Shepherd is chewing because he likes to do it, there are some steps you can take:
- Keep an eye on your Aussie at all times.
- If you see him chewing furniture, shoes, or other unwanted items, interrupt him.
- Offer him a chew toy and make encouraging noises when he chooses to chew it.
- You can also give a treat reward to reinforce that you want this behavior.
- Keep up this process until your dog no longer chews on your items and only chooses his chew toys.
If you want to see more tips on preventing Australian Shepherd chewing, you can check out this video.
In conclusion, the KONG Goodie Bone is the Best Overall chew toy for Australian Shepherds. I like that it can serve as a regular chew toy or a treat dispenser, allowing you to customize it to your dog’s personality.
The Savvy Pick is the KONG Tire. This versatile toy is excellent for chewing, games of fetch, or filling it with treats to test your dog’s problem-solving skills.
When choosing a chew toy for your Aussie Shepherd, consider his personality and chewing style. Does he love to destroy items or gently nibble? Is he motivated by food or chasing objects? By taking the time to learn about your pup, you can choose the correct option for him.
All content has been reviewed for accuracy by Dr. Megan Teiber, DVM.