Healthy Fillers for Kong Toys
So you have gone out and got your dog a Kong toy in the
hopes of it keeping him company when you can’t and curb destructive behavior. Give him physical and mental stimulation with a healthy treat in a Kong toy. Make him work for his food and develop his foraging instincts.
What would make good Kong toy stuffers without adding to your pooch’s waistline?
Let’s take a look at some healthy dog training treats available or ones you can make yourself!
Ultimate Guide To Fillers for Kong Toys
Stuffing part of your dog’s meal in this toy can slow down his eating habits, and this reduces bloating. Other symptoms include choking, coughing, gagging and vomiting, all unpleasant experiences we want to save our pup from. Giving your dog the simple job of working for his food and keeping him busy will keep you from having to clean up after his messes.
2. Peanut Butter
An increasingly popular choice, many pet parents stuff Kong with peanut butter. Most of us already have a jar sitting somewhere in the kitchen which makes this option even more convenient. The sticky texture and great taste of this peanut butter dog treat are perfect for stuffing a Kong toy. It will take your pooch a while to get it all, so make sure it’s given to him on the tiled floor for easy cleanup.
The better news here for people who might ask if dogs can really eat peanut butter or are peanuts safe in general? It is the fact that it isn’t generally a problem for dogs to eat peanuts or peanut butter. Natural peanuts and natural peanut butter is non-toxic for dogs and can even be beneficial!
3. Kong Stuffing
It can be found on Amazon, the Kong dog treat paste comes in a spray can with 5 different flavors to delight your pup’s taste buds. Puppies are known to destroy their surroundings, and there is even a formula just for puppies to keep them out of trouble.
4. Canned/Wet Dog Food
To slow down fast eaters Kong toys can be utilized during mealtimes. Choose your flavor of wet dog food and scoop some into the toy. Keep refilling the toy until your pooch has eaten his entire meal.
5. Dog Treats
To keep your dog occupied or to teach them the concept of working for a reward, stuff a dog treat into the Kong and watch your dog go at it. Keep the frequency limited to a few times a week, you don’t want to overfeed your pooch with treats and spoil their appetite.
You might have heard of freezing stuffers in the Kong toy. For extra nutrients, using something like chicken broth could be a great option. Use some sort of paste to seal off the bottom of the hole and fill it with your pooch’s favorite flavored broth. Freeze the concoction overnight and you will have a great nutritious treat for the next day.
7. Fruits and Veggies
Some dry dog foods do not include any vegetables and fruits. This could deprive your dog of essential vitamins, antioxidants, and fiber that could help their immune and digestive systems. A way to combat this deficiency is by supplementing their diet yourself. Start by cutting chunks of fruits and vegetables and filling your Kong toy with them.
Nutritious vegetable and fruit options include:
Some dogs are allergic to dairy, but if this isn’t the case for your canine, cubes of cheese are very desirable. They can get their fill of calcium, protein and extra vitamin A and B12 if they are lacking in their food.
Tuna is a fish and like salmon, it has high levels of omega 3 fatty acids, which contribute to healthy skin and a shiny coat for your dog. This can be used as a healthy treat for dogs who are not on a diet based around fish protein.
10. Make Your Own
Feel free to mix and match any of the above suggestions to create your own snack. You can even make a mini parfait by combining yogurt and fruit. Figure out what your pooch likes and make a recipe based on that.
Foods to Avoid Feeding Your Dog
There are some foods that we might love to eat but our dogs simply cannot process and digest. Remember to keep these out of reach and definitely do not stuff them in the Kong toy. Some of these foods include:
Anything with caffeine
How to Stuff a Kong Toy
Keep in mind that the stuffing you use is considered a treat. All the extra calories your pooch is getting aside from the regular meals can add up pretty quickly. Be mindful of what you are putting in the toy and don’t overuse anything that may be too rich. The healthy options suggested above could be used more frequently and can be made into neat recipes.
When you first introduce the toy, your dog may not understand the concept. Start by stuffing some of his favorite treats or kibble inside so he gets the point. Give him constant encouragement, and when he finally manages to reach the treat inside, praise him with hugs and pats.
When solid chunks of food become too easy a task for your smart fur baby, try introducing foods with softer texture like yogurt, peanut butter or any frozen liquids for more of a challenge.
A Kong toy can serve as a useful tool for your dog to help you deal with leftover food. Instead of throwing away chicken broth and carrots, try blending them together to make a paste for stuffing.
Use up the leftovers while keeping your fur baby stimulated and out of trouble. If you have a rapid eater on your hands, the Kong could even save your pup from avoidable health issues. That’s like killing three birds with one stone!
Hiding your dog’s Kong around the house adds an extra element of mystery to the mix. Not only are they using their foraging skills, but their tracking ones as well. Stimulate their natural instincts as they search for the toy and work to get to the juicy prize inside.
Did You Know
You can even make an omelet and stuff it in! Anything you can think of that fits in the little hole can work! There are tons of recipe suggestions from other dog parents available online.