While senior dogs don’t need as much exercise as puppies, it is still very important that they remain active. Regular play sessions get the blood flowing to the joints, which can alleviate pain and slow the progression of arthritis. Playing also helps prevent weight gain as the metabolism slows, and keeps your senior’s brain active, helping to stave off dementia! Besides, just because your pooch is aging, doesn’t mean he can’t still enjoy a good toy!
Whether your old pal loves to chase a ball, catch a frisbee, snuggle a plushie, chew a bone, or use his noggin, we’ve got the perfect toy!
1. The BetterBall™
Designed with shelter pups in mind, the BetterBall is perfect for dogs of all ages, including those with reduced vision, weakened jaw muscles, or dental issues. Made from durable, pet-safe, non-toxic EVA foam, it is tough enough to last, but pliable enough to be easy on brittle teeth. Senior pups can fetch, bounce or swim with this buoyant ball and the bright orange-red color makes it easy to locate during play.
If your elderly pooch can no longer run and fetch, the BetterBall also doubles as a treat toy! Simply stuff it with a favorite snack like healthy dental sticks or bully sticks and watch as your buddy exercises his mouth and mind getting to his prize!
Every time you purchase a BetterBall – or any Project Play toy – another will be donated to a shelter dog. Showing off their playful nature has been shown to get these pups adopted 70% sooner!
2. Bird Ball
The Bird Ball is the same size as a tennis ball, but “brings new life to the old game of fetch!” Each ball is two different contrasting colors making it easier for senior eyes to locate. There are 12 unique holes that create whistling bird chirps when it is thrown so dogs can track the sound!
3. Flexible Flying Disc by Project Play ™
Disc-loving seniors don’t have to retire just because they have dental problems! The Flexible Flying Disc by Project Play is made of soft but durable natural rubber to prevent pain or injury. Remember, jumping can be tough on old joints, so be sure your old buddy doesn’t overdo it!
Best Interactive Toys:
4. Project Play Brain Ball
These toys may look like simple treat dispensers from the outside, but inside are multiple levels of tiers to block the treats from falling out. Seniors must concentrate and get active in order to get their reward! As they romp, play, bite, roll and bounce, they are getting much-needed exercise while also giving their brain a workout! Available in four bright, fun colors.
5. Hedgehog Hide and Hunt Plush Toy
Senior dogs can keep their brains sharp and practice their coordination skills as they “hide” and “find” three adorable mini plush hedgehogs inside their matching den!
6. Nina Ottosson Puzzle Games & Toys
Brain exercises are just as important for 14-year-old dogs as they are for 14-week-old puppies! Nina Ottosson began designing puzzle toys for her own dogs to improve both their physical and mental health after she had children. Her toys are designed for all ages and intelligence levels so you can choose the best match for your old buddy!
7. Fresh Mint Scented Brushing Ball
This intricate chew toy is made of durable rubber, infused with mint scent, and covered in nubs and spikes to help grind away plaque on teeth and gums. The more your senior pup chews and plays, the cleaner his mouth will look and smell!
This unique rubber toy was originally created as a piece of agricultural equipment! When inventor, Mark Smith saw how much his dog adored gnawing on it, the AgriChew was born. The tough, yet flexible material is completely pet-safe and sturdy with just the right amount of give to be gentle on senior teeth and gums. Fill the center hole with small treats or peanut butter for an added chew incentive!
9. Senior Kong
Almost every dog owner is familiar with the red rubber snowman-shaped toy that is the classic Kong. The purple senior dog version is designed to be gentler on aging teeth and gums while still providing the chewing, fetching, and problem solving experience dogs love.
10. Hear Doggy Plushies
Dogs love the satisfying squeak they get when playing with their plushies, but as they age, hearing loss can cause them to lose interest in their favorite squeakers. The products created by Hear Doggy operate at a high frequency that is only audible to dogs. The toys are designed to give owners relief from incessant squeaking, but many dogs with partial hearing loss retain the ability to hear these higher frequencies, making Hear Doggy toys a great choice for senior pups!
11. Stinky Squeaker Sneaker
There’s nothing your dog loves more than your scent – the stinkier the better! When left home alone, items carrying your familiar aroma can help provide comfort and anxiety relief, especially for senior dogs that may be experiencing disorienting vision loss, hearing loss or cognitive dysfunction.
Simply stuff a dirty sock inside the cute sneaker-shaped plushie and give it to your pooch to play or snuggle with! Check out the adorable pink Stinky Squeaker Slipper™, too!
12. Doggie Dice™
There are so many wonderful bonding options hiding inside this little plush cube! No matter what activity level your senior dog is capable of, Doggie Dice provide a chance for play. Each of the six sides lists a different activity you can enjoy together – from belly rubs to selfies. Check out the video below to see the Doggie Dice in action!