The vet down the street from my house has a sign that often says “How clean are your dog’s teeth?”
Dogs can get tooth problems. And while nothing will ever take the place of veterinary care for your dog’s teeth, there are several very good dog teeth cleaning toys on the market, and I’ll go over them in this article.
It’s important to help your dog have good dental hygiene because when they do:
- They live longer.
- They’re less prone to illnesses.
- They have fewer problems eating & staying nourished.
- And they tend to have BETTER BREATH!
And while you should always brush your dog’s teeth and get regular vet checks that include teeth cleanings – a dog teeth cleaning toy can really help to keep their teeth CLEAN. Because if you don’t keep your dog’s teeth clean you can end up with tooth extraction, especially in senior dogs.
Here are my top 7 picks for the best toys to clean dog’s teeth!
Dog Toys For Teeth Cleaning
When I went looking for toys that would help keep my dog’s teeth clean, I realized there were A LOT of choices on the market. Some do the job better than others.
I’ve curated a selection based on my experience with different types of toys, customer reviews, and overall quality.
1. Knobby Dog Ball
The nubs on this Teeth Cleaning Spiky Ball from S-Lifeeling (found here on Amazon) (paid link) help to dislodge any food that’s stuck in your dog’s teeth and massage their gums to help keep them healthy.
The ball also floats, making it a great water catch toy. Your dog will also love the fun squicker.
Suitable for: All size dogs – comes in three different sizes
2. Nylabone Textured Ring
I’m a big fan of dog toys that HOLD up to heavy chewers.
This Nylabone Dura Chew Large Textured Ring (found here on Amazon) (paid link) does just that. With large dog breed owners reporting that it doesn’t break apart under heavy chewing.
The nubs and ridges also help to remove food and plaque from dog’s teeth. Did I mention it’s chicken flavored?
Suitable for: All size dogs
Your dog’s rope toys are dirty? Here is how to clean a dog rope toy.
3. Giant Dog Rope Toy
This Dog Rope Toys for Aggressive Chewers (found here on Amazon) (paid link) SEEMS like a rope toy for a BIG dog. But I’ve seen plenty of small dogs play with giant toys like this as well.
Use your judgement when you are looking for a rope toy, to determine if this one will work for your job.
Rope toys are GREAT teeth cleaners. The fibers of the rope act like toothbrush bristles, and this one does a great job of that.
Overall this type of rope toy with it’s knots and fibers is great at cleaning teeth.
Suitable for: Medium to Large dogs (although some small dogs LOVE these)
4. Dog Dental Stick Toy
The KONG – Squeezz Dental Stick (found here on Amazon) (paid link) is a flexible chew toy designed to help clean your dog’s teeth and gums.
This toy can be stuffed with kibble or treats, like all of the other great Kong products, to keep your pup engaged for longer while the nubs clean their teeth.
Suitable for: Medium to Large breeds.
5. Dog Teeth Cleaning Ball
I own one of these Dog Tooth Cleaning Toy by Feixun (found here on Amazon), (paid link) and find that it works fantastic for teeth cleaning. My dogs particularly love it when I put hard food in between the teeth of the ball.
It really keeps them occupied.
And the nubs where they have to work at the food do a great job of scrubbing their teeth.
Suitable for: Small to most large size dogs. This toy may not work for particularly large and powerful dogs.
6. Nylabone Wishbone – Small, Medium & Large
The Nylabone Wishbone Dog Chew Toys (found here on Amazon) (paid link) is my NUMBER one pick for overall quality and usefulness.
This is a toy that doesn’t look like a dental toy with raised nubs or soft spikes, but it is.
It has bristles that raise during chewing to create the teeth cleaning effect. And it’s one of the most well rated chew toys on the market with 4.5 stars and over 15,000 reviews on Amazon!
Suitable for: Small, medium, and large dogs & puppies!- comes in three sizes
Need to know what to do the night before a dog dental cleaning? Click here to learn more.
7. Benebone Maplestick Dog Chew Toy
Like the wishbone above, the Benebone maple dog chew (found here on Amazon) (paid link) has bristles that raise when your dog chews on it, creating an excellent teeth cleaning experience.
This is also an extremely durable toy for aggressive chewers, with flavors that are made from all natural ingredients.
Suitable for: small, medium and large size dogs – it comes in three sizes
Are Dental Chew Toys for Dogs Safe?
First, let me say that I’m not a vet, and this advice is not meant to replace veterinary advice. It comes from years of experience with dogs and tons of research.
If you go with a reputable brand (or one that has a ton of reviews) then dental chew toys are safe for most dogs.
But like most things there are exceptions.
Anytime you give your dog a new toy you should watch to make sure he is not tearing it apart and swallowing bits and pieces.
For most dogs the normal wear and tear is fine and anything they swallow will just pass through, but if they are tearing off large chunks of nylon bone and swallowing it, then you should take the bone away.
Also, if your dog is old and/or has week teeth these toys can cause tooth breakage. You should use your best judgement.
As long as you take those things into consideration, teeth cleaning toys are a great choice for most dogs.
Summary: The Bottom Line on Dog Toys for Teeth Cleaning
My personal favorite of this bunch is the Nylabone Wishbone for Dogs (Available on Amazon). (paid link) It’s durable, get’s good reviews, and is available in three sizes.
But the reality is that a dental chew toys is only good if your dog actually WANTS to use it. So, it’s worth trying out a few different varieties to make sure that your dog will use the toy you buy them.
You can also make toys for your dog (although they aren’t good teeth cleaning toys) like these sock toys for dogs.
Once you find a toy they like, keep an eye on it for wear and tear and replace it regularly to get the best teeth cleaning effect and to keep things safe for your dog.
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