23 Nov Kongs – Do you need one?
I feel the answer to that question depends on your dog. Give the following a read and decide from there. You are your dog’s best friend and ultimately trusts your judgement so go with your gut.
In my opinion, my dogs wouldn’t manage without their kongs now. They are a life saver in so many various moments throughout the day and every day in fact. My eldest labradoodle Tony doesn’t rely on them as once he’s had a walk he just wants to sleep and cuddle until his next walk. Brucey on the other hand could walk all day and he’ll still find the energy, the time to chew something special to me and generally get himself into trouble.
The kong distracts him and I can get him to do anything for it. He almost began to beg when we ate our dinner as a family. I would prepare several kongs as I cooked our own meal. We exchanged the kong for peace and quiet. I believe it to be a reasonable swap.
I use a diverse assortment of food in the kongs. I don’t always use the same ingredients. Most of the time the kong fillings are from our left-over dinner.
Here’s a list of what I’ve used:
Standard dog treats cut/broken up
Ham, chicken, salmon, steak, beef
Eggs (hard boiled)
So, the above ingredients can easily fall out and are easily emptied too so I like to seal the kong. I shall list below what I use to do this. Often freezing kongs once full can be a wonderful treat on a summers day but they also make them last longer. We have 3 kongs at home so I have one always ready for Brucey. Prep is the answer for good behaviour in our house.
PUPPY TIP – Using some frozen low sodium chicken/beef broth makes an excellent teething treat.
Peanut butter (please read following info)
PEANUT BUTTER – XYLITOL
Dogs can’t get enough of it but too much of anything isn’t good. It is a good source of protein and contains heart healthy fats, vitamin B, niacin and vitamin E.
Before giving your dog peanut butter please check the ingredients on the packaging. Some brands contain xylitol, it is a sugar alcohol which is used as a sweetener. When a dog eats anything containing this, it is quickly absorbed into the bloodstream, resulting in a potent release of insulin in a fast and profound decrease in the level of blood sugar (hypoglycaemia). An effect that occurs within 10-60 minutes of eating xylitol.
Untreated, this hypoglycaemia can be life threatening.
You know your dog better than anyone so fill the kong with treats similar to what they already eat and enjoy. Let them familiarise themselves with the kong and learn how to empty it. Experiment with new foods little and often from the lists above. I never knew Brucey loved cucumber until I researched about this subject. Learning new things about your dog is another way to bond.
Every pet shop I’ve ever been in will sell kongs of all sizes and colours and prices range from £5 to £15. Some are indestructible for dogs like my Brucey.
Here’s the process I took this evening while making our dinner
Ham, carrots, mini sausages and assorted dog treats
All chopped up and packed using peanut butter
I can usually get a ‘sit’ and ‘paw’ as a please…
…and this is the only thank you I need. Peace and quiet.
If you do decide to buy a kong or experiment with new ingredients we’d love to hear how you got on. Send a photo of your dog/s enjoying (or hating) their kong and they may feature on our website/facebook/instagram.