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[Updated June 2019]
Golden Retrievers are playful and fun-loving, and they can often be seen carrying something in their mouths. Usually a stick, a tennis ball, or anything else that they happen to find lying around. This breed is known for their love of water, playing fetch, and retrieving. Keeping the characteristics of this breed in mind, some of the best toys for Golden Retrievers would have to include soft toys that they can carry, tennis balls for fetch, and toys that float in the water.
Every golden is different in what toys they like best, so you need to determine how your dog likes to play, and their chewing style. If your dog is a gentle chewer then a soft plush toy is suitable, however, if your dog is an aggressive chewer you will want to look for tough chew toys that are durable enough to withstand power chewing.
Safety is the most important thing when buying toys, you want the toys that your dog will put in his mouth to be made of non-toxic materials, and you want to avoid any toy that can break easily into small pieces that become choking hazards for your dog.
I know that my Golden Retriever loves soft plush toys that squeak, tennis balls, and rope toys. Her favourite toys are soft plush that are realistic animals such as a rabbit, fox, and squirrel. Realistic toys help to bring out the natural hunting instincts in any dog.
Having a variety of toys on hand is a good idea to keep your Golden Retriever entertained and mentally stimulated, and your golden will be fascinated with any “new” toy that you add to the collection. You will know which toy is your dogs favourite because it will be the toy your dog grabs all the time and brings to you.
Your Golden Retriever will enjoy any toy a lot more when you join in on the fun.
Best Rope Toy For A Tug-of-War
Engage in a game of tug-of-war with your Golden Retriever. Rope toys are great for chewing and they help to exercise your dog’s jaw and keep their teeth clean. Golden Retrievers love carrying things in their mouth, and rope toys are perfect for playing fetch with.
XL Dog Rope Toy by Mary & Kate Pets
This thick and sturdy rope toy is made to last and is great for aggressive chewers and teething puppies. This rope toy claims to be nearly indestructible, and if your Golden Retriever happens to destroy it, the company will offer a one-time free replacement.
This rope toy is made of thick durable 24″ cable and has 3 large knots for your dog to chew on, and a large loop for you to grip, perfect for throwing or pulling.
- XL, made of thick durable 24″ cable with 3 large knots for your dog to chew on
- Large loop for you to grip, perfect for throwing or tug-of-war
- Made of natural cotton fibres, it is safe and non-toxic
- Machine washable
- Nearly indestructible, one-time free replacement guarantee
- Perfect for aggressive chewers or teething puppies
- Helps clean your dog’s teeth, and exercise his jaw muscles
The Best Puzzle Toy For Mental Stimulation
Golden Retrievers are very intelligent, in fact, they are considered to be the fourth smartest dog breed, according to The Intelligence of Dogs by Stanley Coren, trailing behind the Border Collie, Poodle, and German Shepherd. With all that intelligence, this breed needs to be mentally stimulated on a daily basis to keep them from getting bored and becoming destructive.
Puzzle toys are great for keeping your golden entertained and stimulated.
Hide A Squirrel Interactive Puzzle Plush by Outward Hound
This interactive puzzle toy is sure to keep your Golden Retriever from getting bored. This cute soft plush toy is great for playing hide-and-seek. You can hide a squirrel and make it squeak and watch your golden try to find it.
This toy comes in 4 sizes, and each squirrel has a large squeaker inside. The squirrels are perfect for tossing and fetching.
- The soft plush toy that doubles as an interactive game, stuff the squirrels in the tree trunk and place it on the floor for your dog to sniff and hunt
- Use the squirrels for playing a game of fetch
- Prevents boredom
- Each squirrel squeaks, creating more fun for your dog
- Challenges your dog, and provides mental stimulation
- Puzzle toy for your dog to play with alone, or with you
The Best Noise Making Squeaker Toy
Squeaker toys are a big hit with most dogs, they love the noise it makes and they love to bite down on the toy to make it squeak. Most dogs will try to rip a toy to shreds to get to that noisy squeaker inside, so you will want to be sure the toy is durable.
Outward Hound Invincibles Snake Stuffingless Plush
Dogs love this toy, with over 5 million of them sold this noise making snake toy will surely be a hit with your Golden Retriever.
Outward Hound has made this toy even stronger and more durable to stand up to tough chewers. There is no stuffing inside, so there is no mess. This toy is lightweight and super strong, perfect for tugging and tossing indoors or out.
The squeakers inside will keep squeaking even if they become punctured.
- Durable for long-lasting fun
- 2 layers of super tough fabric, dura-tuff inner lining prevents ripping
- No stuffing means no mess
- Squeakers squeak even when punctured
- Lightweight, perfect for tossing and fetching
- Available in 3 sizes
- Available in 3 bright fun colours
Best Toys For Playing Fetch
Most Golden Retrievers love to play fetch. They were bred to retrieve, and that is what they love to do. If you own a golden, then you know that you could spend an endless amount of time throwing a ball until your arm fell off!
Why not have a machine do some of the work for you, that way your golden can continue having fun, while you rest your aching arm.
iFetch Too Interactive Ball Launcher For Dogs
This automatic tennis ball launcher will keep your golden entertained for hours. This machine launches a standard sized tennis ball up to 40 feet. You can adjust the distance to 10 or 25 feet as well, lock the distance to 10 feet and you can use it indoors.
This machine uses a rechargeable battery, so there is no need to buy batteries.
Reloading this machine is quick and easy, you can even teach your Golden Retriever how to load it with a little training.
- Automatically launches standard sized tennis balls
- 3 tennis balls included, or use your own standard sized tennis balls
- Rechargeable battery, that lasts up to 300 launches
- Launch distance is 10, 25, and 40 feet, easily set with the touch of a button
- Random launch setting available to keep your dog guessing
- Lock the distance to 10 feet for safety and training, and for use indoors
- 6-month Warranty
Chuckit! Amphibious Bumper Fetch and Float Toy
Golden Retrievers are natural born swimmers and love to engage in a game of fetch in the water. The Chuckit! Amphibious Bumper toy is lightweight so it floats and the bright colour allows you to see it at a distance.
This toy is durable but soft enough to be comfortable for your golden to carry.
- Buoyant design, made of rubber and EVA foam
- Lightweight and floats
- The soft and durable nylon exterior is tough enough to handle rough play and is gentle for dogs to carry
- Bright highly visible colours, easy to spot in the water or in tall grass
- Knotted non-slip rope handle, perfect for throwing during a game of fetch
- Nylon and rubber exterior is easy to clean and resists dirt and dog slobber
KONG Jumbler Football Toy
This toy puts a new spin on a classic game of fetch, the tennis ball inside the football jumbles around and gives off a loud squeak. The exterior football has enough give to it that will allow your golden to easily grab it and shake it.
With two handles on each end, this toy is easy to throw and easy for your golden to fetch. This football even floats, so your golden can have fun with it in the water.
KONG is known for making toys that are durable and built to last, and this jumbler football toy is no exception.
This toy is sure to entertain your Golden Retriever for hours, and with its unpredictable bounce, your golden will be guessing which direction this football goes next.
- 2 in 1 interactive toy, keeps your dog entertained
- Interior tennis ball squeaks and jumbles around
- Exterior football has an unpredictable bounce
- 2 handles on each end make it easy to throw, and your dog can easily grab it and shake it
- Durable, and stands up to tough play, ideal for fetching
- Available in 2 sizes, M, L, and L, XL
KONG Air Dog Squeakair Tennis Balls
The list of the best toys for Golden Retrievers could not be complete without tennis balls! I have never met a golden who didn’t love to fetch tennis balls.
KONG combines 2 of dogs favourite things into one, a tennis ball and a squeaker. These tennis balls are made with non-abrasive felt that will not wear your dog’s teeth down like regular tennis balls.
- The medium sized tennis ball is the same size as a standard tennis ball
- Bounces and squeaks, perfect for a game of fetch
- Made with non-abrasive felt, will not wear down your dog’s teeth
- Durable, and high quality
Best Soft Plush Toy To Cuddle And Carry Around
Golden Retrievers are known to have soft mouths, meaning they are able to hold and carry things in their mouth without damaging them. This breed is gentle, and they love having soft plush toys to carry around and shake.
Soft plush toys are a favourite among many goldens, my Ellie included. The best ones are the ones that are more realistic, such as animals that goldens love to chase, such as foxes, chipmunks, squirrels, and rabbits.
Soft plush toys are not ideal for aggressive chewers that will want to chew and rip the toy apart, and if the toy has a squeaker, then that is even more motivation for them to chew it apart to get to the squeaker inside.
These toys are ideal for goldens who are gentle chewers.
KONG Cozies Marvin The Moose
Marvin the Moose soft and cuddly plush toy is very popular among dogs, and it is sure to be one of your Golden Retriever’s favourite cuddle buddy.
Marvin is extra large and he also squeaks. This toy is made with an extra layer of material to make it stronger and has minimal stuffing for less mess.
This toy is ideal for comforting your dog or for playing fetch.
- Soft and cuddly plush, comforting to your golden
- Made with an extra layer of material to make it tough
- Minimal stuffing
- Built-in squeaker for interactive fun
- Ideal for gentle chewing, fetch and comfort toy
- Machine washable
Plush Rabbit Dog Toy by Pet Lou
This realistic looking rabbit will bring out the hunting instincts in your golden. Perfect for chasing and snuggling with, this rabbit squeaks, grunts, and the ears crinkle.
This soft plush toy is ideal for gentle chewers and is double-stitched for extra durability. The large 15″ plush size is perfect for Golden Retrievers to carry around in their mouths.
This toy is popular, and many owners of Golden Retrievers say that it is their dog’s favourite toy.
- Realistic looking rabbit, in vivid colours
- Soft plush toy, double-stitched for extra durability
- Large 15″ size, perfect for Golden Retrievers to carry
- Ideal for gentle chewing sessions
- Multiple squeakers, it grunts, and the ears crinkle
- Machine washable
Sancho & Lola’s Gray Squirrel by Sancho & Lola’s Closet
This gray squirrel is sure to bring out the hunting instincts in your golden, it is realistic looking and medium in size. This soft plush toy is ideal for gentle chewing, and not intended for aggressive chewers.
Made of non-toxic materials, it is safe for your dog. This toy is perfect for interactive fun, multiple squeakers are inside the squirrel’s head, body and tail.
The great thing about this toy is that your golden will have fun chasing it and carrying it in his mouth, but you can also feel good knowing that you have helped to support a rescue dog. Sancho & Lola’s Closet donates a percentage of profits sold to dog rescue organizations that they have partnered with.
- Realistic looking medium-sized plush toy
- Made of non-toxic materials
- Multiple squeakers, 3 in total, in head, tail, and body
- Percentage of profits donated to rescue dog organizations
That concludes our list of the best toys for Golden Retrievers. I truly believe that your golden will love any of the toys mentioned above, and will probably love them, even more, when you join in on the fun, after all, goldens love human interaction.
When choosing a toy for your golden, always keep safety in mind, you don’t want to choose a toy that will easily break into small pieces or rip apart easily. Always supervise your dog with any toy, and remove damaged toys immediately before they become a choking hazard.
Golden Retrievers are highly intelligent dogs who love to swim and play fetch, providing toys that offer mental stimulation will keep your golden happy and healthy.
If you want to find out more about intelligent dog breeds, check out the article from Your Dog Advisor, 10 Smartest Dog Breeds in the World.
What toy does your Golden Retriever love the best? Let me know in the comments below, I would love to hear from you.