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14 Best Games for Dogs [2024]

Written by: Arlene D.
| Published on January 1, 2024
iHeartDogs is reader-supported. Some of the links below may be paid affiliate links, where we receive a small commission on a product at no additional cost to you. 

In today’s fast-paced world, ensuring our canine companions receive ample exercise can sometimes be a challenge, especially during inclement weather or when outdoor activities are limited. Indoor exercise equipment for dogs has revolutionized the way pet owners approach fitness, offering solutions that cater to dogs’ inherent need for physical activity, even within the confines of the home. This article delves into the top indoor exercise equipment options that promise to keep tails wagging and muscles moving, regardless of the weather outside.


#1 – Mickiewicz Dogs Puzzle Toys for Mentally Stimulating, Advanced Level 3 2 1 Interactive Dog Toys, Puzzle Food Games Treat Feeders, Dog Enrichment Toys for Small Large Dogs

The Mickiewicz Dogs Puzzle Toys are interactive dog toys designed to mentally stimulate dogs and provide a challenge. With three different difficulty levels, these toys can exercise a dog’s brain and provide hours of fun. The toys can also be used as a feeder, promoting healthy eating habits and reducing indigestion. Made with safe and durable ABS material, these toys are designed to withstand daily use and prevent spills with a non-slip pad design. They can also help stabilize a dog’s emotions and provide exercise for overall good health.


#2 – The Nosey Nose: Nosework Scentwork Training for Dogs Puzzle Brain Games, Anise Scent (Zipper Pouch)

The Nosey Nose is a scentwork training toy for dogs that engages their sense of smell and stimulates their brain. The interactive puzzle games provide a fun activity for dogs and help build their confidence while reducing stress and anxiety. The toy uses the scent of anise, which is easy for dogs to detect and has a stimulating effect. It is a great tool for dogs with visual or mobility impairments and can help burn excess energy.


#3 – Brightkins Touchdown Time! Treat Puzzle – Dog Puzzle Toys, Puzzle Toys for Dogs Mental Stimulation, Interactive Dog Toys

The Brightkins Touchdown Time! Treat Puzzle is a dog puzzle toy designed to provide mental stimulation and interactive play for dogs. It features 16 stacked football compartments that can be filled with treats or kibble for dogs to spin and search for their rewards. Additionally, it can also be used as a slow feeder to help prevent dogs from eating too quickly. The toy is made from easy-to-clean, BPA-free materials and comes with an expert guide written by a certified professional dog trainer for training advice.


#4 – TOMAHAUK Snuffle Mat for Dogs – Interactive Feed Game/Dog Puzzle Toy That Helps with Stress Relief, Foraging Skills, Brain Stimulation and Boredom (Blue)

The TOMAHAUK Snuffle Mat for Dogs is an interactive feed game and puzzle toy that promotes stress relief, foraging skills, brain stimulation, and alleviates boredom for dogs. The felt cloth design efficiently hides food, improving a dog’s foraging skills. The slow feeding aspect of the mat allows for good gut health as it gives dogs ample time to prepare their digestive systems. The non-slip design ensures mess-free meal times, and the mat is machine washable for easy cleaning. Additionally, customers also receive a free frisbee to further bond with their dogs during playtime.


#5 – Dog Toys for Aggressive Chewers, Interactive Dog Toys Tug of War, Mentally Stimulating Toys for Dogs, Puppy Teething Toys for Boredom, Dog Puzzle Treat Food Dispensing Ball Toy for Small and Large Dogs

This dog toy is designed to meet the needs of aggressive chewers. Made of durable and non-toxic materials, it is designed to withstand strong chewing and is easy to clean. Additionally, the toy features a 360-degree cleaner and a double-layered tooth-cleaning mechanism to help improve dental hygiene. It also aims to reduce bad behaviors by providing mental stimulation and preventing boredom. The toy is best suited for smooth surfaces and may not work on rough surfaces. Overall, it aims to promote healthy chewing and improve the relationship between dogs and their owners.


#6 – Outward Hound Nina Ottosson Dog Brick Interactive Treat Puzzle Dog Toy, Intermediate

The Outward Hound Nina Ottosson Dog Brick Interactive Treat Puzzle Dog Toy is an intermediate level toy that provides mental stimulation for dogs. It features obstacles and combinations of steps to keep dogs focused as they search for treats. The toy encourages positive play habits and can help reduce anxious and destructive behavior in dogs. It is made from BPA, PVC, and phthalate-free materials that are safe for pets and easy to clean. However, it is important to supervise dogs while playing and replace the toy if it becomes damaged.


#7 – Aluckmao Interactive Dog Food Puzzle Toy, Dog Treat Puzzles Slow Feeder, Puzzle Games for Dogs Mental Stimulation

The Aluckmao Interactive Dog Food Puzzle Toy is a slow feeder designed to provide mental stimulation for dogs during mealtime. By using this puzzle feeder, dogs are encouraged to slow down their eating, which can aid in weight loss. Additionally, the interactive toy helps to improve a dog’s intelligence through engaging brain stimulating games and keeps them occupied and entertained when left alone.


#8 – TWOPER Pet Snuffle Mat for Dogs Sniffle Interactive Treat Game for Boredom Anxiety Relief Dog Feeding Mat Enrichment Dog Puzzles for Dogs Encourages Natural Foraging Skills & Mental Stimulation

The TWOPER Pet Snuffle Mat is a dog feeding mat that is designed to provide mental stimulation and enrichment for dogs. It features a colorful flower design in the center that can cover large chunks of food and a ring of grass around it for smaller meals. The mat is made of high-quality, non-toxic materials and has an anti-skid back to prevent slipping. It is suitable for all dogs and cats and comes with a handle for easy carrying and a snuffle ball toy as a gift.


#9 – TRIXIE Mad Scientist Turn Around Strategy Game, Intermediate Dog Puzzle Toy, Level 2 Activity, Treat Puzzle

The TRIXIE Mad Scientist Turn Around Strategy Game is an intermediate level dog puzzle toy designed to challenge and stimulate dogs mentally. It includes a base with frame, 3 beakers, and 2 sets of patterned lids. The game involves placing treats in the beakers, mastering the flipping and balancing of the beakers, and then using the patterned lids to further increase the difficulty. The product also includes non-slip rubber feet, dishwasher-safe turning elements, and a booklet with tips for training. It is compliant with animal welfare regulations.


#10 – Letsmeet Squeak Dog Toys Stress Release Game for Boredom, Dog Puzzle Toy IQ Training, Snuffle Toys Foraging Instinct Training Suitable for Small Medium and Large Dogs

The Letsmeet Squeak Dog Toys are designed to provide dogs with a fun and interactive way to release stress and boredom. The toy features built-in squeakers that dogs will find exciting and help to relieve pressure. It also doubles as a puzzle toy, allowing dogs to forage for hidden food, providing mental stimulation, and helping to train their foraging skills. The toy is safe for teething and dental cleaning and is easy to clean either by hand or in the washing machine. Plus, it makes for a great gift for dogs on various occasions.


#11 – Outward Hound Tennis Maze Craze Interactive Squeaky Dog Toy, Green

The Outward Hound Tennis Maze Craze Interactive Squeaky Dog Toy is a mentally stimulating puzzle toy for dogs. It features tunnels that dogs can pounce, tilt, and paw to try and get the tennis ball out. The toy can be used indoors or outdoors and is easy to clean. It is important to note that no toy is indestructible and should not be left with unsupervised pets.


#12 – Wobble Wag Giggle Ball, Interactive Dog Toy, Fun Giggle Sounds When Rolled or Shaken, Pets Know Best, As Seen On TV

The Wobble Wag Giggle Ball is an interactive dog toy that is suitable for dogs of all ages and sizes. It is designed with 4 clutch pockets, making it easy for dogs to pick up during playtime. The ball does not require batteries and instead utilizes an internal tube noisemaker to create enticing giggle sounds that engage dogs and keep them active and entertained. It can be used both indoors and outdoors and is a favorite among furry friends, according to the Pets Know Best Collection.


#13 – Hunger for Words Talking Pet Starter Set – 4 Piece Set Recordable Buttons for Dogs, Talking Dog Buttons, Teach Your Dog to Talk, Talking Pet, Dog Training Games, Dog Buttons for Communication

The Hunger for Words Talking Pet Starter Set is a 4-piece set of recordable buttons for dogs that aims to teach them to communicate. Created by speech therapist Christina Hunger, this product allows pet owners to record simple words like “outside,” “play,” or “bed” onto the buttons. The set includes 4 recordable buttons and an activity guide, and the buttons now feature improved sound quality with updated technology. Additionally, the product offers insights and tips from Christina Hunger’s step-by-step teaching guide and her book, “How Stella Learned to Talk.”


$14 – Outward Hound Hide A Squirrel Plush Dog Toy Puzzle, XL

The Outward Hound Hide A Squirrel Plush Dog Toy Puzzle is designed to keep dogs engaged and entertained for hours. The toy features a tree trunk that can be filled with six squeaky stuffed squirrels, allowing dogs to use their natural hunting instincts. In addition to the puzzle aspect, the toy can also be used for interactive play, such as fetch. The plush texture is gentle on the teeth and gums, making it suitable for both puppies and adult dogs. However, it is important to supervise pets while they play with the toy and to remove and replace it if it becomes damaged.


What Are Some Great DIY Games for Dogs?

Certainly! DIY games are a fantastic way to engage your dog mentally and physically without breaking the bank. Here are some great DIY games that you can easily create at home:

  1. Treats in a Muffin Tin: Place a few treats in some of the muffin tin wells and then cover each well with a tennis ball. Your dog will have to figure out how to remove the balls to get to the treats.
  2. Bottle Spin Toy: Take an empty plastic bottle, remove the label, and cut holes big enough for treats to fall out. Place some kibble or treats inside and let your dog figure out how to spin or push the bottle to get the rewards.
  3. Tug Toys from Old T-Shirts: Braid strips of old t-shirts together to make a simple, sturdy tug toy.
  4. Sock & Ball Puzzler: Place a tennis ball inside an old sock and tie a knot. It becomes both a chew toy and a puzzling treat dispenser if you add some kibble inside.
  5. Homemade Agility Course: Use broomsticks, hula hoops, and boxes to create a makeshift agility course in your backyard.
  6. Digging Box: If your dog loves to dig, create a designated digging box using a kid’s sandbox. Hide toys or treats in it for them to find.
  7. Hide & Seek: A classic game! Ask your dog to stay, hide somewhere in the house, and then call them to come find you.
  8. Treasure Hunt: Hide treats or toys around the house or yard and send your dog on a treasure hunt to find them.
  9. Puzzle Feeder with Tennis Balls: Take a shallow container or tray and place a few treats or kibble in it. Cover them with tennis balls. Your dog will need to move the balls to access the food.
  10. Towel Roll Treat Game: Lay a towel flat on the ground, place a treat at one end, and roll it up. Your dog will have to unroll the towel to get the treat.

While these DIY games are fun and engaging, always supervise your dog when introducing a new game to ensure safety. Also, make sure that all materials used are safe for dogs to avoid ingestion or other accidents.


What Should I Consider When Purchasing Games for My Dog?

When purchasing games for your dog, there are several factors you should consider to ensure safety, engagement, and suitability for your canine companion:

  1. Safety First: Ensure the game has no small parts that your dog can swallow or choke on. Materials should be non-toxic, durable, and appropriate for a dog’s mouth.
  2. Size Appropriateness: Choose games that are appropriate for your dog’s size. What’s suitable for a Chihuahua won’t necessarily be suitable for a Great Dane.
  3. Mental Stimulation: The best games engage your dog’s brain. Puzzle toys or games that require problem-solving can be beneficial for keeping your dog mentally sharp.
  4. Physical Exercise: If you’re aiming to tire out your dog physically, look for games that encourage movement, like fetch toys, agility sets, or flirt poles.
  5. Suitability for Age and Health: Senior dogs may not be as agile or have the same stamina as puppies. Ensure the game you choose is suitable for your dog’s age, health status, and energy levels.
  6. Ease of Cleaning: Games, especially treat-dispensing ones, can get dirty. Opt for ones that are easy to clean to ensure hygiene.
  7. Interactive vs. Independent Play: Some games are designed for you to play with your dog, while others are for dogs to play on their own. Choose according to how you intend to use it.
  8. Adjustable Difficulty: As your dog becomes more adept at a game, it’s great if you can adjust the difficulty to continue challenging them.
  9. Duration of Play: Some games are quick, while others can keep your dog engaged for extended periods. If you’re trying to keep your dog occupied while you’re busy, longer-duration games might be ideal.
  10. Review Feedback: Look at reviews and perhaps ask other dog owners about their experiences with specific games to ensure you’re making an informed choice.

Remember, every dog is different, so it might take some trial and error to find the games that your dog enjoys the most. Always supervise your dog when introducing a new game to ensure it’s played safely.


Conclusion: Best Games for Dogs

While outdoor playtime and walks remain essential for a dog’s overall wellbeing, indoor exercise equipment serves as an invaluable tool in maintaining their physical and mental health. By integrating these tools into your dog’s daily routine, you ensure they stay fit, stimulated, and happy, no matter the external circumstances. Investing in the right equipment not only guarantees a healthier dog but also nurtures a deeper bond between pet and owner, as you navigate the path to fitness together.

iHeartDogs is reader-supported. Some of the links below may be paid affiliate links, where we receive a small commission on a product at no additional cost to you. 

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