The Best Way to Give a Frozen Kong Toy

Kong dog toy - Stuffing a Kong Dog Toy

By Michele L. Meyer

There are many Kong toys to choose from but for freezing, I recommend the Kong Classic. This is the one shaped like a snowman and is made of rubber. Some benefits of a frozen Kong are:

  • Makes a great summer toy
  • Can help sooth gums of a teething puppy which can help prevent destructive chewing and mouthing
  • Can occupy your dog when you are cooking, sitting down to eat, entertaining visitors, etc. 
  • Helps to prevent destructive chewing by satisfying your dog’s need to chew
  • Can help ease canine stress and anxiety

You will need to choose the right durability for your dog. Red is for dogs that are average chewers and black is for aggressive chewers. Light pink and blue colors are for seniors or puppies whose jaws are not as strong. Next, you will need to choose the right size for your dog. There should be general weight guidelines on the packaging. I often recommend going one size larger if the dog’s weight is near the higher end of the guideline. For example, I believe the guideline for the small Kong Classic is up to 20 lbs but the medium starts at 15 lbs.

You will now need to choose your Kong stuffing. One of the most commonly used stuffing is peanut butter but make sure it does not include the ingredient Xylitol which can be deadly for dogs.   You could also use wet dog food, banana, almond butter, or pure canned pumpkin to name a few.  When choosing pumpkin, be sure not to use the pie mix version which can easily be mistaken for pure pumpkin. 

The moist stuffing of your choice can also be mixed with small pieces of apple, carrots, dog treats, kibble, etc. Please keep in mind dogs cannot have all people food so please check with your dog’s veterinarian to ensure what you are giving your furry friend is safe.  Also, new foods should always be introduced in small amounts, one at a time, and under observation to ensure your dog can tolerate them before giving larger amounts. For example, you wouldn’t want to give your dog a large amount of peanut butter the first time and leave him alone if he has a peanut allergy.  Also keep in mind how long your dog will be left with the Kong when choosing the stuffing. Wet dog food should usually not be eaten after 20 to 30 minutes of sitting out so this may not be a good option if you are leaving Fido with the Kong for longer than that.

Chihuahua dog and Kong toy - Stuffing a Kong Dog ToyI recommend easing into the difficulty level if you are just introducing your dog to a frozen Kong. Some dogs give up if it is too difficult to start. Therefore, I do not recommend freezing it the first time you give your dog the stuffed Kong. Try freezing the stuffed Kong for just 30 minutes the next time you give it and then for an hour the following time. If all is going well and your dog is not giving up on getting all the goodies out, you can then start freezing it for a couple hours or more so it is completely frozen. The last level of difficulty is to stuff the Kong with your choice of the fixings mentioned above and then squeeze the Kong so that the opening becomes more oval instead of round. You can then lodge a crunchy dog treat in the whole and put a little of the moist stuffing on top (e.g. peanut butter) to entice your dog. Now freeze it until completely frozen.

CAUTION: Please take caution when giving your dog high value toys and food items like a stuffed Kong. Although our dogs are part of our family, they are still animals and can feel the need to guard high value items. Therefore, please make sure everyone, especially kids and other pets, do not bother Fido when he is enjoying his Kong and remember to pick up the Kong once Fido is done and walks away from it. Each dog in the home should have their own stuffed Kong and should be kept safely away from the other dogs in the home until all Kongs are emptied and picked up. Do not give your dog a stuffed Kong if he is already displaying aggression around food or toys. Please contact us if you need help with food or toy aggression.

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