The Best Toys for Your Bulldog

toys for your bulldog

Best Toys for Your Bulldog 

Who we are and why we are the authority on the English Bulldog Breed

We have devoted the last 15 years to improving the health of the English Bulldog breed in the United States. Instead of following the current unhealthy breed standards, we set out to change the breed for the better, focusing on lighter wrinkle sets, slightly longer snouts and extensive health testing. Through years of dedication we have been able to significantly improve the health characteristics within our bloodlines and give hope to the breed that health improvements are possible. Along the way, we have also become thought leaders in proper bulldog training, care and behavioral studies.

When you bring a new English bulldog home for the first time you want to ensure they have everything they need to thrive and do well in their new adoptive home. Amongst things like crates, safety gates, and food you also want to make sure you have the best toys for your bulldog. 

If you simply do a quick Google search on toys for puppies, you will be overwhelmed with the amount of toys available. Everything from little squeaky pigs to hard bones. Which is right for your little bulldog puppy? Because this topic is fairly extensive we decided to include both a written article as well as a video explanation below. Feel free to use both resources to learn more about the best bulldog toys! 

Best Bulldog Toys Video – Erica Explains What Toys We Recommend For Our Bulldogs

Erica talks about the best toys for each stage of a bulldog.

Why Do Puppies Need Toys?

toys for your bulldog

As puppies start to grow, so does their curiosity for the world around them. And as their new adoptive parent, you have a plethora of things in your house that look great enough to chew on. The new couch, a pair of socks on the floor, the bedside table, and even the TV remote that landed on the floor. 

Puppies need toys to help stimulate their growth. The toys provided to puppies can encourage the development that they so desperately need. When we as children grew up, we had various toys that we played with as we aged.

As babies, we had rattle toys, as toddlers we learned to play with blocks, as children we learned to ride bikes, and as teenagers, we learned to perfect our skills with what we loved to do. There was no one toy we played with for our entire childhood. And puppies are no different. 

English bulldogs in particular can be very destructive with toys. The key to avoiding this type of destruction is to have age-specific toys (that we will dive into later in this post.) 

When Do Bulldog Puppies Start Using Toys?

toys for your bulldog

As we say in probably every post that we write, every bulldog puppy is unique and different. This means that what works for one puppy may not work for yours. And what might work for your bulldog puppy may not work for another. So don’t be discouraged if you find something else works better for your puppy, it doesn’t mean you are doing anything wrong. 

A general rule of thumb is that in the first few weeks of the puppy’s life, they will start to notice objects around them and strive to figure out what they are. According to Purdue University, “From five to seven weeks of age, puppies engage in more social object play – where multiple puppies play with the same toy.” 

So, really before seven weeks, there is not much need to try to dive into the nitty gritty in finding the right toy for your puppy. Bulldog puppies will start to teethe right around three to four months (typically 16 weeks) old. And so this is when you will want to start having toys available specifically for teething. 

What Are the Best Toys For Your Bulldog?

People often ask us about toy selection for our young bulldog puppies. And while we will always offer up our opinion based on the experience we have, we want to remind you that every puppy has unique preferences.

However, a few general recommendations can be made that are typically accurate to most bulldog toy preferences. Let’s break down appropriate toy selections according to the age of the bulldog. 

Toys for Eight Weeks

Young, English Bulldog puppies prefer to have a wide variety of toys versus just one lonely toy that sits on the living room floor.  A shotgun approach to toy purchasing is strategic as you zero in on the specific preferences of your bulldog. 

Toy selection in this age group can be lower in quality. Young bulldog puppies are not yet strong enough to destroy or pull apart a moderate, quality toy. So, this is the stage in your puppy’s life that you can save a little bit of money. No need to buy a fancy toy, when a simple squeaker will do. 

Stuffed animals, ropes, blankets, and squeaker toys are all great options for bulldog puppies within the 8  to 14-week age range.  These types of toys provide comfort that simulates on some level the physical contact they experience with their littermates.  

Toys for 14 Weeks

As your English Bulldog puppy reaches the 14 weeks and older range upgrades in toy selection are appropriate.  Higher quality brands such as Kong or Bullymake design toys that are able to withstand the strength of a growing bulldog. We particularly like the Kong Classic, Kong Wubba, and the Bullymake Bow Tie offered in their subscription service. 

Toys for 16 Weeks 

Around 16 to 20 weeks of age your English Bulldog puppy will begin teething. This is the process where they lose their baby teeth and their adult teeth begin to come in. You can expect moderate swelling and low-level discomfort in your teething puppy. Bulldog puppies will also begin to increase their chewing levels during this phase. So, be sure to have those teething toys ready at all times. 

There are a number of different toy options for a teething bulldog puppy. Our go-to toy for a teething puppy is the Kong Puppy Goodie Bone. Unlike other Kong toys, the Goodie Bone is softer in texture and allows a puppy to really sink their teeth into the toy. The softer rubber eases the aches and pains of teething and provides a model for proper chewing behavior when the temptation to be destructive is the greatest. 

We also recommend deer and elk antlers specifically for the teething phase.  Antlers have come under fire in the past five years as being potentially hazardous to a young puppy.  This has not been our experience as a genuine high-quality antler isn’t the same thing as rawhide or other dangerous chew toys.  

An antler is sometimes the only toy object that will satisfy a particularly uncomfortable puppy that is bent on destruction. Antlers are durable to the point that they can withstand even the most aggressive chewing habits of an English Bulldog puppy. It is important to monitor your bulldog from time to time to ensure their teeth are not damaged from antler chews. 

Choking Hazards for Bulldog Puppies to Look Out For

Just as we would be concerned with what types of potentially dangerous objects are lying around for our babies or toddlers, we also have to be careful with our puppies. Bulldogs are curious and won’t know the dangers of certain small objects. Or even those toys that should not be available to them at the age they are at. 

We recommend avoiding any stuffed animals with sewn-on buttons or removable objects as they are possible choking hazards. Troy Veterinarian adds, “Pets can choke on objects too large or challenging to swallow, just like humans.” Many bulldog puppies have undergone emergency surgery to remove swallowed objects from their intestines. And we never want that to be an experience you have to go through. 

In addition to this, also look out for smaller objects in your home or yard that could be potentially hazardous. Such as small rocks, balls, broken objects, or broken toys.

Hopefully, these recommendations help you understand the changing toy preferences of your bulldog puppy and how to prepare for them! Toy shopping for your bulldog puppy will quickly become your new favorite pastime. There are few things more enjoyable than seeing the excitement on a puppy’s face when you bring home a new toy.