Dog toys for kids are always a good option for parents who want to wake up some responsibility feeling in the mind of their kid before they are ready to take care of a real dog.
There’s something magical about a child and his or her first pet. Usually, from the moment a child learns that it is possible to own their own animal, one that they can train and love and play within their very own homes, the child will ask for one. Constantly.
I remember offering all sorts of bargains to my own parents as a little girl, promising to do extra chores or spend more time on homework, if only they would let me get a bunny.
Animals in general cast a spell over children. Many girls go through a “horse crazy” stage, many boys at one point or another want to get a “cool” animal, like an iguana.
For many reasons, though, most homes won’t have a pet. Pets can be expensive ventures, costing not only money for food and care, but also time as many need to be taken out, walked, and bathed–jobs that usually fall to the parents.
Many families also can’t get pets due to living restrictions. I remember wanting a dog desperately when I was fourteen, but the house we lived in was too small to accommodate one.
Other friends lived in apartments where pets were not allowed. There are many reasons why a family might choose not to get a pet.
Still, there are many benefits to animal-child interactions. Studies have shown that time with animals can relax a child and can help shyer kids better at socialization.
Parents are encouraged to bring children to zoos, farms and other locations where animals are plentiful to expose them to these positive interactions. Animal therapy has also taken off as a field — my mother-in-law works in horse-therapy, helping children who have had challenges learn confidence and coping skills.
There’s another way to bring a pet into your house, without the hassle of cleaning up its poop daily, and that’s through toys. A child can benefit from animal toys in many of the ways he or she will from an actual pet.
Luckily, there are many animal toys to choose from on the market. Today, we’ll focus on dog toys for kids, as dogs are probably the most popular animal toy out there.
Dog toys for kids come in all shapes and sizes. You can find dog toys for kids that are battery run, that can be taught different skills, just like a real dog. Or you can find dog toys for kids that are soft and plush, simulating real dog hair. No matter what kind of dog toys for kids, you’re looking for, chances are you can find it!
The first thing to consider when looking for dog toys for kids is what age child the toy will be for. As mentioned above, there are many options of dog toys for kids available, and some will not be age-appropriate for every child.
It’s obvious to most that a robot dog would be inappropriate for an infant, but even a large stuffed dog could be dangerous for a baby. Experts recommend that plush toys be kept out of baby cribs since they could pose a suffocation hazard should they fall over onto the baby’s face.
Also, bear in mind your child’s personality when buying dog toys for kids. Some children crave the interaction that an interactive toy gives them, while others prefer a quiet toy they which they can personalize purely through imagination.
Look at what other toys your child has been drawn to in the past. If she ignores most of her electronic toys, preferring to play with old-school ones like bricks and traditional dolls, then you’ll probably be better served getting her a classic stuffed dog over a hi-tech one.
Finally, take into consideration the size and weight of the dog toys for kids that you’re planning on buying. While some kids will enjoy a life-sized golden retriever, others would prefer a smaller toy they can easily carry around. Know how much weight your child can handle or would want to handle before buying a toy.
Keeping these ideas in mind, let’s look at a few dog toys for kids that are currently on the market. We’ll break them down for you so you can get a feel for what things to look for when investigating dog toys for kids.
We’ve divided them into Electronic Dog Toys for Kids, Classic Dog Toys for Kids and Unique Dog Toys for Kids to further help you see the difference between the two categories, and make your shopping experience easier.
Top 10 Trending Dog Toys for Kids
Electronic Dog Toys for Kids
For the child who loves hi-tech gadgetry and wants a robot pal, this dog is the perfect gift!
- Ages 6+
- Size: 11 x 7 x 7.5 inches
- Weight: 12.8 ounces
- Remote controlled (50 ft range)
- Has several fun modes, including a song and dance mode
- Educational: can teach the alphabet through lights in eyes
- For boys: dog even farts!
- Plastic exterior easy to spot clean if gets dirty!
While the first option here looked very much like a robot, this electronic pet choice has a softer, more natural look. The Joy for All Companion Pet Golden Pup is a great dog toy for kids who want a realistic-looking “pet”.
- Ages 5+
- Size: 4.4 x 8.4 x 9 inches
- Weight: 4 lbs
- Responds to touch
- Makes authentic puppy sounds
- Has a simulated heartbeat for further realism
- Responds to sounds
- Requires 4 C batteries (comes with initial 4, but those will need replacing after regular use)
- Outside can be carefully spot cleaned
This unique-looking, interactive dog toy is a hit with younger kids who want both a traditional cuddly toy and an interactive electronic toy.
- Ages 36 mo – 7yrs
- Size: 5.5 x 3 x 9 inches
- Weight: 11.4 ounces
- 3 voice modes: speaking, singing, harmonizing
- Can interact with other Sing-a-Ma-Jigs toys
- Squeeze activated
Classic Dog Toys for Kids
Does your child want a dog toy that looks like a real dog? This large stuffed dog should do the trick! Roughly the size of a real full-grown Golden Retriever, it can be used in imaginative play, or simply as a companionable pillow for a child!
- Ages 3+
- Size: 10.8 x 15 x 31 inches
- Weight: 1.1 lbs
- Lifelike detailing
- Soft polyester fabric; great for hugging and cuddling!
- Can be spot cleaned
The Jellycat Bashful Black and Cream Puppy are probably what came to mind when you first read the words “dog toys for kids”.
This is a traditional stuffed dog, similar to a teddy bear in construction. Children can easily cuddle and transport this dog around for all sorts of fun adventures!
- Ages: 0+ (though do not leave in infant’s crib!)
- Size: 15 x 4.5 x 5.5 inches
- Weight: 8.8 ounces
- Soft polyester coat
- Pellet eyes and nose
- Cotton and bean stuffing
- Spot clean only
Unique Dog Toys for Kids
Puppets make fun toys for kids, who have a fun time manipulating the toy to make it come alive. Some can even pick up rudimentary ventriloquist skills, providing them with a lifelong, exciting hobby!
- Ages: 36 mo – 15yrs
- Size: 24 x 12 x 10 inches
- Weight: 15 ounces
- Lifelike appearance
- Hand controls mouths
- Man-made materials
- Surface clean only
- Educational, interactive toy
This colorful, whimsical dog toy for kids allows them to walk a dog while transporting their favorite toys! This is great for a child who’s learning how to walk and needs help balancing, or for a child who likes pushing carts.
- Ages: 1 – 4 yrs
- Size: 12.8 x 7 x 17.5 inches
- Weight: 5.07 lbs
- Solid wood construction
- Bright colors
- Fun cartoon face
- Some adult assembly required
You may be familiar with rocking horses, but what about a rocking dog? This fun dog is a great toy for young children who want to rock and love dogs!
Note: Like any rocking horse-type toy, make sure to follow the company’s age/weight restrictions, as a child who is too young or too heavy can get hurt misusing the toy.
- Ages: 2 – 4 yrs
- Size: 26 x 11 x 23 inches
- Weight: 4.65 lbs
- Easy assembly
- Some options include sound
- Wood core and rockers
- Soft, cushioned exterior
These last two dog toys for kids are not just toys; they also function as banks to teach children about saving. Both are creative, whimsical pieces that are sure to entertain children while they learn important lessons about money!
- Ages: 3 +
- Size: 12”
- Weight: 3 lbs (before coins added)
- Cool design allows children to see coins being “eaten”
- Fun cartoon exterior
- Clear interior lets children keep track of how much they’ve saved
- Wood and plastic
- Ages: 3 +
- Size: 12 x 4 x 12 inches
- Weight: 2.69 lbs (before coins added)
- Fun balloon character
- Removable coin plug
- Metallic blue body
- Looks good as a home accent piece as well as a toy!
And those are our top ten picks for dog toys for kids. They’re all fun, adorable toys for kids of many different ages, so you’re sure to find something for any child you’re buying for!