Introducing a KONG® to your dog

Posted by Charles Hirsch

This blog is to help those of you who have never used a KONG ® or your puppy has never been exposed to a KONG®.

Note:  If your dog has NEVER had a KONG® before, it is HIGHLY recommended that you monitor your dog while they play with it.  Some dogs may chew on the toy and destroy it, with the potential of choking on any of the parts that come off.  Once your pet has demonstrated an "appropriate" interaction with the toy, monitoring is at your discretion.

If you would like to borrow a KONG® in your order to train your dog, please place a request in the comments section of the Order Form.

  1. The most important step is to properly size your toy. This is a safety concern for your dog.  Use the size guides provided, but if you are unsure, ALWAYS size up.  Choosing toys that are too small present a choking hazard for your pup.  If you need help in sizing your toy, please contact us at

  1. The next thing you must decide is what hardness of rubber does your dog need? Puppies 16 weeks to approximately 9 months of age will benefit from the softer KONG® Puppy.  Some of you have dogs that can chew through metal, these require the Extreme series.  Classic applies to most dogs from 9 months to 9 years of age.  KONG® Senior provides those older dogs who may be periodically losing teeth, a softer rubber.

Note:  Toys can be used at earlier stages for puppies, but Doggie Distractions requires all puppies be at least 16 weeks of age with all immunizations complete before the use of our product. 

  1. Now you have your toy selected, you need to engage your pup to enjoy it. Here are a few tips to help your dog get excited about the toy.

    1. Place a trace of peanut butter just on the inside lip of the toy.

    2. Place a broken up dog biscuit, inside the toy.

    3. Serve you dogs high reward treats (cold cuts, chicken, etc) in the toy.

    4. Play keep away with the toy and be excited when he gets it!

    5. Playing keep away can easily evolve into a game of hide and seek with the toy.

  1. Once your dog is familiar with the toy the distractions can begin!  Here are a few tips for starting your dog on Doggie Distractions:

    1. Thaw:Although the toys are intended to provide a prolonged distraction frozen, newcomers may feel defeated by the endless licking. Thaw your toy a little while on the countertop prior to giving it to your dog.

    2. Try the Kibble-Explosion. This filled toy has a plug of wet dog food holding back a handful of kibble.  Dogs always love kibble other than their own. Once they break through, the reward pours out.

    3. Puppy-Pops are great at enticing even the most stubborn of dogs.  The soft jerky stick is an easy tasty start to the remainder of the toy.  Again, try these unfrozen.

Use our Distraction Ratings below to help gauge your selection and by all means please contact us if you have ANY questions!

(360) 994-9990