If you think I'm referring to an extra large ape with a taste for blondes you are way off base. I'm talking about the Kong line of dog chew toys. This wonderful toy, recommended by veterinarians and dog professionals, was developed in 1976 by a man who was desperate to get his German Shepherd to stop chewing rocks. Yes, rocks. While working on his Volkswagen van the man pulled off various car parts and threw them to his dog, Fritz, trying to get the dog interested in something beside the tasty rocks. Fritz found a suspension part particularly fun, and so the Kong was born.
Does any of this matter to you? Nah, probably not, but I love a good story. What you should be interested in is the durability of the classic Kong. These toys are virtually indestructible - perfect if you have a puppy who likes to chew, on everything, or a dog with strong jaws - and they bounce around erratically when you toss them. Fun for the whole family. And the best part of the Kong? You can stuff them with tasty foods for your dogs to try to get out. This works great for a dog with separation anxiety or if you're training a puppy to love his crate. Leave the dog with a Kong stuffed with tasty treats before you leave and soon your dog will be pushing you out the door.
I can tell you this from experience because this tactic worked great for my rescued dog Lana. Before the Kong she would ram her crate from the inside eventually pushing it across the room with the force from her head. No wonder she was so pissy, she always had a horrible headache. I started giving her stuffed Kongs and though she wasn't thrilled to see me go she eventually saw my leaving as a good chance to get something yummy. And she didn't have to lie down in a dark room with a cloth over her eyes to wait for her migraine to go away.
These Kong things sound great, Dog Lady, but what do I stuff my dog's Kong with? I'm glad you asked.
I like to pack a handful of my dogs' kibble into it first and then stuff the opening with a decent amount of peanut butter finishing it off with a piece of dog cookie stuffed into the peanut butter. The dogs get a quick payoff from the cookie, then they get to lick out all the peanut butter and then they get the crunch at the end with the kibble. If you're worried about your dog's weight you can stuff the Kong with canned pumpkin or pureed meat baby food and then freeze it. You can fill the toy with cut up carrots and cover the opening with cream cheese.
Want more recipe ideas? Try the Kong's website (look under "Tips and Advice/Kong recipes") or one of these handy links below. Your dog will thank you.