6 Reasons Why Dogs Like Squeaky Toys


Every dog needs a dose of daily stimulation in his life, be it physical or mental and many of them find it in different items and activities, for some it’s walks and for others it’s toys, but why do dogs like squeaky toys.

The answer as to why dogs like squeaky toys in the first place isn’t as clear as one might think as there are a variety of reasons, though the first one is often tied to the noise itself.

It awakens their latent predatory instincts, making them believe they’re dealing with prey which can make them more engaged in their newest toy and keep them occupied for longer.

One of the other popular reasons tends to be stress relief, much like how a lot of us enjoy squeezing stress balls or some other forms of activity to feel less tense after a rough experience.

For dogs, that’s quite common in case they’re left alone and they have some degree of separation anxiety to help act as a coping mechanism.

While the reasons don’t differ much, they are plentiful, and if you’d like to find out what they are, as well as the potential dangers behind squeaky toys, be sure to read on.

Why Do Dogs Like Squeaky Toys: 6 Main Reasons

1. It Helps Build Confidence In A Dog

beagle puppy chewing spiky ball dog toy indoor

An odd one, but fairly true in the dog world.

When most dogs hear the squeak of a toy when they sink their teeth into it, they’ll get that hit in the recesses of their mind that awakens that primal predator instinct from their ancestors.

For them, the toy is the ‘prey’ and they get that sense of satisfaction and a, sort of, confidence boost when they successfully snatch it.

While it will have a varying level of success based on the dog, this one usually tends to be one of the main reasons.

2. It’s A Good Teething Option

While this is more true for chew toys in general and not a direct influence of the squeaky element of the toy, you can practically consider it a tagalong.

Squeaky toys, given their nature is to be squeezed, are often made from comfy material that’s not too hard and that’s pleasant for the dog to bite into, allowing him to use it as a way to soothe any potential teething pains.

Though, if he’s doing it often as an adult, you may want to check his teeth and gums for any infection, irritation or injury.

That said, some squeaky toys can be good for helping keep teeth clean depending on their texture and material.

While the squeaking element isn’t relevant to this, the toy that it’s attached to is as squeaky toys double as chew toys quite often.

3. It Makes Them Happy

dog running with toy in mouth

Following up on the first reason, the joy of reliving through one of their oldest instincts is one thing, but it also comes with that feeling of content which can serve to greatly improve their mood.

You’ll often see him playing around with it just to get that dopamine going which will soon be evident by a more excitable mood.

4. A Lot Of Them Are Unique

Back in the day, the best squeaky toy you’d be able to get would be the equivalent of a rubber chicken or a ball.

Nowadays, they’re multi-feature marvels which make dogs excited for a variety of reasons on top of just being a squeaky toy, be it the different colors, the unique shapes, potential lighting, different material, etc.

You name it and the toy likely has it, allowing for near endless replayability and a great amount of fun to be had by both the dog and his owner.

5. They Help Grab Your Attention Easier

Little dog at home in the living room playing with his toys

Dogs are social animals and they love nothing more than to enjoy interacting with other dogs, or, more favorably, you.

Though, while they can communicate with other dogs with relative ease, getting your attention can be a lot harder, especially if the intent is to go out and play.

However, a squeaky toy practically speaks the universal language of a fun time on top of being loud enough to make you turn your head.

So, the next time you see your pupper come at your feet with a squeaky toy between his teeth, you know what he’s looking for.

6. They Can Serve As Great Stress Relief

On top of being great confidence boosters, squeaky toys are also decent options for stress relief, as I’ve mentioned at the start of the article.

Despite their often lovable expressions, dogs tend to get under stress an awful lot, be it some particular fear of loud noises from vacuums, fireworks, thunder and the like or the fear of some specific people, suffering from sickness or an injury, or just plain separation anxiety.

Their stress can come in a variety of forms, and one of the most common ways of dealing with it apart from having emotional support from their pet parent, tends to be from interacting with a squeaky toy.

Though not the first option that they resort to, it’s definitely something they reach for if you’re not available to provide comfort for whatever reason.

Once again, the squeaking option plays a smaller role here as compared to the texture and material of the toy itself, but they come hand in hand for modern toys.

So, if you see your pooch going to his safety corner alongside his favorite squeaky toy, chances are he’s suffering from a high dose of stress meaning you should check up on him and make him feel more at ease.

Are There Any Dangers To Playing With Squeaky Toys?

bulldog playing with favorite green squeaky toy pig

Of course there are, much like with any other product, there’s always some sort of downside.

For squeaky toys in particular, the main problem to be wary of is that they can be a choking hazard.

The valve often found on the squeaky toys that produces the sound can become loosened with wear and can pose a potential choking hazard.

Be sure to inspect the toy for damage frequently and be at the ready to take your dog to the vet should the valve end up popping out and lodging itself in your dog’s throat.

The object is relatively small, so it shouldn’t pose that big of a risk for large dog breeds, but smaller ones may be at a higher risk.

Regardless, a quick visit to the vet should make him as good as new.

Another issue that’s a lot less common, but can still occur with lower quality squeaky toys is the use of potentially toxic materials in the toy’s construction.

These can be quite hazardous to your dog’s health which is why I always advocate going for the more trusted brands with better reviews and higher standards of quality.

Not every seller on the internet can be trusted, and it’s worth dropping a few extra bucks for a more durable and safer product for your canine companion.

Does My Dog Need A Squeaky Toy?

Dog Beagle featching a toy indoors in bright interior

It’s by no means necessary, but it’s a nice thing to have.

A lot of the positive benefits of a squeaky toy can already be fulfilled through other means, be it different toy alternatives, you spending more time with your pooch, or just getting a simple chew toy.

The squeaky bit adds a bit of extra enjoyment and comfort for the dog in question and the choking risk isn’t really all that great, especially if you’re supervising him, so I’d say it’s ultimately up to you to weigh the pros and cons against one another.

In Conclusion

So, why do dogs like squeaky toys then? It’s simple, they’re a great source of fun for them. That’s the primary reason.

The high-pitched squeaking noise gets that dopamine going and excites them whenever they bite into it, letting them reenact their ancestors’ lives as great predators in a more controlled setting, triggering that subconscious satisfaction.

Ultimately, it’s a simple, but effective gimmick in getting them to be more active and more engaged in their things, but these toys, given that they often double as chew toys, also provide a dose of comfort for them.

They help provide them with a method to handle any potential stress that may come their way, one that’s healthier than lashing out at things with aggression, be it other people, dogs, or your furniture.

While it likely won’t rid them of said source, it sure does help calm them down.

Are the toys necessary? Not really, an attentive pet parent can provide them with all the benefits that a squeaky toy can and a regular chew toy often poses less of a choking hazard than this one does.

That said, it does keep their attention occupied for longer, and there are definitely going to be times when you may be too tired or absent from the house to be able to interact with your good little boy and a squeaky toy will help bridge that gap.

My personal recommendation is to get one, but ultimately, the decision lies with you, and I’m certain that you’ll make the right one for your dog. Until next time, pet parents.


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