Choosing the right toy for your dog is a difficult process, especially if you have a tough chewing dog. There are so many toys on the market that claim to be ‘tough’, but fall apart in seconds when put up against a serious chewer.
Our two Labs have gone through their share of toys, so we are always looking for the best and most durable dog toys for them. We decided to test out three toys designed for hard chewing and strong dogs.
In this article we will be looking at the durability of the toys, fun factor, cost and the return policy. By the end of this article you should have all the information you need to decide whether these toys are right for your dog.
Meet The Contenders
The three tough and durable dog toys we have chosen for this article are the KONG Extreme, KONG Wubba and the GoughNuts Maxx 50 Stick. All three of these toys are designed for strong dogs; however, the Wubba is not a chew toy.
The KONG Extreme is claimed to be the company’s most durable product. It features their own proprietary black rubber compound and is shaped in the classic KONG shape. The KONG Extreme can be filled with all sorts of different treats and it makes for great games of fetch, due to its unique shape.
KONG offers the Extreme toy in a number of different sizes, so all sizes of dogs are covered. If you do not need the toughest version, the classic KONG is also available along with one for puppies as well.
According to KONG, the Wubba “is a fun, interactive toss and tug toy”. The toy features two balls covered in tough and durable reinforced nylon fabric. One ball is a standard tennis ball, while the bottom ball is a squeaker.
In addition to the two balls, there are also a number of long tails made from the same reinforced nylon material. These make the toy easier to pick up and are great for games of fetch or tug. The squeaker makes the toy a bit more interesting for dogs as well.
GoughNuts Maxx 50 Stick
GoughNuts Sticks are now the company’s best-selling product. They are used by Police K9 dog units all around the world and are claimed to be one of, if not the toughest dog toy available. The Maxx 50 Stick is the company’s toughest product, made from their most durable rubber compound.
GoughNuts Sticks and Rings also feature the company’s unique safety indicator. The Maxx 50 Stick features two layers of rubber, a yellow compound in the middle and a black one on the outside. If your dog chews down to the yellow rubber it is time to replace the toy. Other GoughNuts products feature a red warning colour on the inside instead of the yellow found in the Maxx 50.
The GoughNuts Maxx 50 Stick is designed for large dogs and comes in at 11.5 inches long by 2.1 inches in diameter.
Which Dog Toy Is the Most Durable?
In terms of durability and toughness, we have no doubt that the GoughNuts Maxx 50 Stick takes the cake here. The KONG Extreme comes in at second, while the KONG Wubba is a distant third.
We have no fear about leaving the Maxx 50 Stick with out two Labs, as it seems virtually indestructible. The toy shows absolutely on signs of any damage despite being chewed and used for vigorous games of tug.
If your dog damages the GoughNuts Maxx 50 Stick they must be some sort of monster. GoughNuts recommends the ring version of the Maxx 50 if you think your dog will damage the Stick, as it has less weak points.
The KONG Extreme is undoubtedly a seriously tough toy as well, but we feel it is a step below the Maxx 50 Stick. We feel that the toy is more likely to be damaged due to its hollow design. The rubber compound doesn’t seem as strong as well and marks easier. Despite this, we feel that the KONG Extreme should hold up against all but the toughest of chewers.
Moving onto the KONG Wubba, there is a serious downgrade when it comes to durability and toughness. The Wubba’s reinforced nylon just isn’t as strong as the rubber found on both the Maxx 50 and the Extreme toy. KONG does state that the Wubba is not a chew toy, so we can understand why it is weaker.
We have had two Wubba’s before this one. The first Wubba lasted about six months before it was torn apart, while the second didn’t even last a day. This is because we left it with our dog to chew on, which was a big mistake.
The KONG Wubba should be a toy that you hide away until it is playtime. For games of fetch and tug it has been incredibly durable, but it fails astoundingly quickly when a dog chews on it.
So What Toy Is the Most Fun Dog Toy
In reverse of the above section, the KONG Wubba comes first, with the Extreme toy in second and the GoughNuts in last place. Of course this is subjective, but our two dogs love the Wubba the most and the GoughNuts the least.
We find that the Wubba is the most interactive toy because of its great squeaker and its design is excellent for games of fetch or tug. Our two Labs even play tug with each other and it makes them go absolutely crazy. It is the one toy they will drop any other toy for and Winston (our boy) even hunts for it when we put it away.
Coming in second for its ‘fun factor’ is the KONG Extreme. The Extreme can’t be used for games of tug due to its shape, but its erratic bounce makes for hilarious games of fetch our dogs love. Stuffing the toy with different treats also keeps our dogs entertained for hours.
Last place is filled by the Maxx 50 Stick, however, that doesn’t mean it is a boring toy. The Maxx 50 is great for games of tug or fetch and the fact that it floats is great as well. Despite this, it is still the toy our dogs get the least excited for and has been interacted with less than the other two.
If you are looking for the most fun toy, then the KONG Wubba is certainly our recommendation.
What Do These Dog Toys Cost?
Depending on where you live, the cost of these toys will obviously vary. We live in New Zealand where dog toys tend to be expensive, however, we bought these three from Amazon. All these prices in the following section are in US dollars.
Both the large KONG Wubba and the XL Extreme toy were bought for $8.99, which we thought was an excellent price. These were on sale, but even at their regular price (about double) these toys are definitely worth your money. The price will obviously change slightly depending on the size of the toy you get.
Additionally, if you opt for the KONG classic or KONG for puppies instead of the Extreme, the price is slightly less as well.
The GoughNuts Maxx 50 Stick was definitely the most expensive toy we purchased at $32.99. It was significantly more expensive than the other two, but it will almost certainly last a lot longer. We feel we will get years out of this toy, so feel that the hefty up-front price is worth it.
The Maxx 50 compound is the most expensive GoughNuts rubber compound, so those who don’t think they need the extra durability could opt for less costly models.
What If I Have to Return These Toys?
Both KONG and GoughNuts have excellent return policies. They will both replace the toys if they are damaged by your dog and they are easy to work with.
Summary Of All Three Toys
Summary of The GoughNuts Maxx 50 Stick
Things We Like
- Incredibly tough and durable
- Great for games of fetch and tug
- Excellent quality
- Great return policy
- The safety indicator is a great idea
Things We Don’t Like
- Not as interesting as other toys on the market
- Expensive compared to other toys
Summary of The KONG Extreme
Things We Like
- Excellent distraction toy
- Durable and tough
- Not too expensive, especially on sale
- Great return policy
- Quality feel
- Can be used for exciting games of fetch
Things We Don’t Like
- Can’t be used for games of tug
- Not as interactive as the Wubba
Summary of The KONG Wubba
Things We Like
- Great fun for games of fetch and tug
- The squeaker is excellent
- Feels like a quality product
- One of the most interactive toys available
- Not too expensive
- Good return policy
Things We Don’t Like
- Not as durable as some other tough toys
- Can’t be used as a chew toy
- The nylon material and balls could be dangerous if ingested
- Can be hard to clean
Which Dog Toy Is the Best?
This is a difficult decision. The best toy obviously depends on a number of factors and we have explained the pros and cons of each toy above.
If you are looking for the most fun toy, the KONG Wubba is definitely it, however, its durability is questionable unless you put the toy away when it is not playtime. If you can remember to put the toy away after playtime or your dog isn’t a really tough chewer, we feel that the Wubba is undoubtedly the best toy.
The GoughNuts Maxx 50 Stick is definitely the most durable and toughest toy out of the three, but it is not as interesting. It is also quite expensive compared to the others, but it will last a long time. If your dog is really hard on toys, the GoughNuts is the one to go for.
Overall, we feel that the KONG Extreme is the best toy for tough chewing dogs when you factor in price, durability and fun factor. It is great as a distraction toy and will withstand all but the most extreme chewing dogs.
At the end of the day, you can’t go wrong with any of these toys. We feel that these three are probably the best toys on the market and are well worth it for any dog owner.
Let us know what you think of these toys and if you have any recommendations, leave a comment below.