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The 15 Best Dog Toys For Mental Stimulation

It might be tough to choose a dog toy that will both amuse and challenge your companion. The pet market is expansive, and new items are introduced every day. There are so many brands that it would be impossible to examine all of the available models.

We look at new pet toys every few weeks, and we think we can help you narrow down your choices by choosing and reviewing 10 different brands of brain-stimulating dog toys.

We've also included a buyer's guide for dog toys that are good for their minds. In this guide, we explain in detail what a good dog toy for the mind should have.

Below are our reviews of dog toys for mental stimulation, in which we assess durability, puzzle complexity, cleanliness, and enjoyment to assist you in making an informed decision. BestForPets (bestforpets.org) has reviewed the best dog toys for mental stimulation.


Nina Ottosson Dog Twister Puzzle Toy – Best Overall



The Nina Ottosson 67335 Dog Twister Dog Puzzle Toy is the greatest overall dog toy for cerebral stimulation. It teaches your pet sequential step problem-solving and includes a Level 3 advanced puzzle for them to solve.

There are nine treat sections with sliding lids and nine locking handles. It may be easily cleaned with a moist cloth.

The Dog Twister puzzle toy kept all of our pets occupied for several minutes, and the only true drawback we saw was that the white locking knobs were difficult for the dogs to unlock, thus they were rapidly eaten and damaged.


  • Advanced puzzle
  • Demonstrates sequential steps
  • Nine compartments
  • Simple to clean


  • White locking handles deteriorate


Vitscan Dog Treat Dispensing Toy – Best Value



The Vitscan Dog Treat Dispensing Toy is the most cost-effective option. The Vitscan is a three-in-one toy, and we believe you will agree that these are the most cost-effective dog toys for cerebral stimulation. Three distinct balls engage the mind of your pet in various ways.

The first is composed of rigid plastic and whistles as it rolls and drops sweets. One stores goodies in soft rubber teeth that clean your pet’s teeth as he or she digs for them. Another soft ball with stretchable spikes for teeth cleaning.

We discovered that all of our pets enjoyed at least one ball and spent considerable time playing with it. However, as they are designed for smaller dogs, it is doubtful that a huge dog will be able to use them for very long.


  • Three unique balls
  • Brushes teeth


  • Meant for tiny dogs


VolacoPets Interactive Dog Toys – An Exceptional Selection



The VolacoPets 5 Different Functions Interactive Dog Toys is the ideal cerebral stimulation dog toy for those who are prepared to invest a few additional bucks. VolacoPets is a brand of five distinct balls designed to stimulate your pet in various conditions.

A squeaking ball and a treat-dispensing ball might assist your pet combat loneliness and boredom. A natural rubber ball and a rope ball are meant for outdoor play, whilst the last ball is intended to clean your pet’s teeth while they play. The balls are resilient and ought to last a long time.

The biggest drawback of this brand is that it is unsuitable for large or aggressive chewers. There isn’t much to challenge your pet with these balls, otherwise we would have placed this brand higher.


  • 5-in-one
  • Dental hygiene
  • Durable


  • Not for big dogs


Totoo Treat Dispensing Dog Toy



The design of the Totoo Dog Treat Dispenser Ball Toy is a tumbler that always remains upright. This dog toy allows you to regulate the rate at which treats are dispensed and will keep your dog amused as they struggle to obtain a treat.

This toy is simple to clean and helps slow down your eating if you have a tendency to consume food too rapidly.

We discovered that it could fall apart and that larger dogs could carry it, rendering it ineffective as a toy.


  • Tumbler design
  • Simple to clean
  • Reduces rate of feeding


  • Separates easily
  • Not for huge dogs


Classic KONG 41938 Dog Toy



The KONG 41938 Classic Dog Toy is a popular among retrieving and chewing dogs. These Kongs come in a variety of sizes to accommodate pets of all sizes, and their construction is incredibly robust. These toys include a hole on one side for filling them with peanut butter and goodies.

It’s dishwasher-safe, so there’s no need to worry about keeping it clean, and you can even freeze it for a delicious summer treat. It has a distinctive shape that causes it to bounce unexpectedly and keeps your dog amused.

Given that Kong toys are available in so many sizes, it might be difficult to first select the correct one. Purchasing an item that is too big or too tiny may reduce its longevity and enjoyment. It is also relatively costly for what amounts to a rubber item.


  • Durable
  • For every size dog
  • Safe for use in a dishwasher
  • Unpredictable springiness


  • Uncommon to find the proper size
  • Expensive


Interactive West Paw Tux Dog Chew Toy



The West Paw 566 Zogoflex Tux Interactive Dog Chew Toy is a highly durable and strong dog toy. It is intended to withstand even the most aggressive chewers and is made from non-toxic, BPA-free rubber.

It floats, making it an ideal retrieve toy for use around water. It is also dishwasher-safe, so cleaning it after stuffing it with sweets is simple.

We discovered that the West Paw is an excellent retrieve toy, as it is easy to toss and travels a decent distance. In terms of interactive treat filling, though, it falls short.

There is no space for snacks in the toy, and whatever that does fit slips out very soon. There is no problem for the dog to complete and nothing to keep your pet engaged if it is not chewing the toy or retrieving it after you throw it.


  • Floats
  • BPA absence
  • Safe for use in a dishwasher
  • Durable


  • Thin sweets section
  • Not really difficult


Outward Hound Brick Puzzle Dog Toy



The Outward Hound 67333 Puzzle Brick Dog Toy is designed to both delight and train your dog. This puzzle consists of red boxes that your dog must open and white bones that they must remove; the red boxes also slide to expose secret treats beneath.

Together, they provide a difficult puzzle for your pet to complete. There are 20 compartments for hiding goodies, so each puzzle is unique and there are nearly infinite possible combinations. It is a lightweight, reusable toy that may be wiped clean after use.

The disadvantage is that you must constantly supervise your dog. It consists of little fragments. Your pet removes the white bones from the game to get access to the rewards underneath. These components may not fit properly and may be difficult for your dog to grasp.

These bones might be lost or consumed. Some dogs may flip the lightweight gameboard to gain access to the rewards, so destroying the challenge.


  • Challenging
  • Maintains cleanliness
  • Unique on every occasion
  • 20 treat compartments


  • Bones are difficult to grasp.
  • Must utilize supervision


Bob-A-Lot Interactive Dog Toy by StarMark



The extra-large food compartment of the StarMark SMBAL Bob-A-Lot Interactive Dog Toy can contain up to 3 cups of food or treats. This huge compartment enables you to utilize it as a food dispenser that will excite your pet’s thinking and slow down their eating.

This toy is an ideal option for pets with a problem of rapid feeding. Adjustable holes assist regulate food flow, and the housing is made of sturdy plastic. A weighted anti-slip bottom allows the toy to bounce unexpectedly, offering a great deal of enjoyment for both you and your pet.

Even though this toy can store a lot of food, it is not a good choice for large dogs, since they tend to carry it about instead of playing with it. The process of filling this toy with food is long and laborious.

It can take almost five minutes to feed the food via a tiny aperture that is just large enough for a few little bits of food. Because the food container is inaccessible for wiping, cleaning is not made any simpler. This toy has a robust exterior, but if your dog is a chewer, it may not survive long.


  • Up to 3 cups of capacity
  • Adjustable apertures control the flow of food
  • Weighted, nonslip base


  • Not for huge dogs
  • Not for canine chewers
  • Tough to fill
  • Uneasy to Clean


The SPOT Flip ‘N Slide Treat Dispenser



Your pet will enjoy playing with the SPOT 5779 Seek-a-Treat Flip ‘N Slide Treat Dispenser Toy. It has a highly sturdy construction that can endure the abuse of even the largest dogs. It contains several compartments for hiding goodies and two types of puzzles: sliding and lifting pieces.

Our pets loved playing with this toy, but they did not find it difficult. Three of our dogs were able to get the goodies without any prior introduction. If your pet enjoys pushing the game board, you must also keep an eye on the rubber feet, since they may come off and be mistaken for treats.


  • Durable
  • Multiple compartments
  • Two types of enigmas


  • Rubber feet detach
  • Not really difficult


Corspet Hachi Dog Toy Treat Vending Machine



The Corspet Hachi Dog Item Treat Dispenser is the last toy on our list that provides mental stimulation. Despite the fact that this model is inferior to the other three dog toys, there may be a few things about it that interest you. The Hachi sog toy has a distinctive design that comprises rubber discs or gears that rotate.

The rubber spikes and nodules on these disks are designed to hold treats in place while gently cleaning your pet’s teeth and massaging their gums as they remove them.

The disadvantage of this toy is that it is only suitable for little dogs and pups. Any dog that like chewing or weights above 20 pounds will shred this toy soon.

If your pet manages to disassemble the toy, he or she may ingest some of the smaller pieces. Additionally, it does not keep treats very well, as the majority of ours fell out when we were filling it.


  • Brushes teeth
  • Massages gums


  • Exclusive to tiny dogs
  • Falls apart
  • Not holding goodies
  • Contains fragments

How to Choose the Most Effective Dog Toys for Mental Stimulation

Let’s analyze what’s essential when selecting a brain stimulation dog toy.


To properly comprehend these toys, we need define what a dog toy for cerebral stimulation is. Although many mental stimulation toys are puzzles, they are not entirely puzzles, as many people may believe.

Some stimulation toys are intended to amuse or cheer up bored or melancholy dogs. These toys can also aid in weight loss by reducing the rate of eating. Occasionally, it is less about educating people and more about getting them to do something else.

Due to the numerous reasons to intellectually engage a pet, one manufacturer may give a puzzle while another offers a noisy toy.

Develop the Mind

If you want to boost your dog’s intellect and polish his thinking, puzzles are the greatest approach to achieve this. Frequently, there are three degrees of complexity for puzzles.

Level One Puzzles

Level One puzzles are the simplest for your pet to accomplish and often include a single obstacle. Treat distribution by rolling a ball is a wonderful example of a Level One puzzle.

Level Two Puzzles

Level Two puzzles are often a little more difficult, requiring the manipulation of cups, levers, and sliding doors.

Level 3 Puzzles

Level 3 riddles are the most challenging for your pet to solve, typically requiring two unique actions to obtain a prize.

Feeding Regulation

Puzzles are an excellent technique to slow your pet’s feeding rate. Many dogs have a tendency to eat too rapidly, which leads them to swallow air along with their food, causing pain.


The durability of your dog’s toy is an essential consideration. Dogs like chewing, and they may destroy many toys in a matter of seconds. If your dog is a chewer, you should constantly examine the durability of any toys you want to purchase.

Many firms indicate in the product description whether or not the toy is suitable for a dog with a strong chewing instinct, and many manufacture toys specifically for these dogs.


Naturally, cleanup will be a major problem, and many manufacturers will take measures to simplify the procedure. We recommend searching for brands that are dishwasher-safe and lack a number of compartments that make it difficult to clean or remove water.


If you are uncertain, we recommend selecting the best option overall. 67335 Nina Ottosson’s Dog Twister has complex puzzles that teach sequential problem-solving. It is resilient and simple to maintain.

The Vitscan Dog Dog Food Dispenser Toy is our pick for the greatest value, as it has three distinct balls that are certain to amuse any small to medium-sized dog. They brush their teeth while playing.

If you’ve learned something new about mental stimulation toys for dogs from our buyer’s guide and feel more confident about buying, please share your toy reviews. for this puppy on Twitter and Facebook.

BestForPets (bestforpets.org) would like to thank our visitors for visiting our website to learn about and research the best dog toys for mental stimulation. We hope you liked reading our evaluations of mentally engaging dog toys and are now closer to making a purchase for your pet.

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Dr. Deborah Fletcher

Deborah R. Fletcher, DVM, is a skilled veterinarian with more than 15 years of experience dealing with companion and exotic animals. She has experience caring for a variety of animals, including household cats and dogs, reptiles, birds of prey, and even primates. Dr. Fletcher is a valuable part of the BestForPets team, where she contributes to their aim of providing pets and their owners with the finest possible treatment and services.

Veterinarian (DVM) Dr. Deborah Fletcher


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