Phoenix, Arizona the largest specialty pet retailer PetSmart, has announced a partnership with toy retailer Toys“R”Us. The new Toys“R”Us Pets Private Brand collection, exclusive to PetSmart, helps stimulate a pet’s intellectual growth.
This is a fascinating partnership between two retailers, I wonder if we will also see PetSmart Private Brand products in Toys“R”Us.
The new line launched on Monday, May 21, the line will be available in the new Toy Chest dog toy aisle only at PetSmart stores and online at www.PetSmart.com. PetSmart has worked with Dr. Sophia Yin, veterinarian and applied animal behaviorist, to provide insights on how toys and play help develop a happy, healthy pet.
From the beginning, toys play a crucial role, but which toy is right for your pet? PetSmart has created the new Toy Chest aisle, which groups 100 Toys“R”Us Pets items and 1,000 other toys, allowing for easy shopping. Here’s what to look for:
The Early Years
Puppyhood is the most formative stage for health and cognitive growth, and “it’s important for puppies to have many different experiences because neurons are forming,” Dr. Yin said. To help a puppy reach his full potential, engage pets with toys with varied textures, such as:
- Toys“R”Us Pets Tubular Body Animals: With a tubular rubber center, this toy is ideal for puppy chewing. “Soft rubber toys are the best chew surface,” Dr. Yin said.
- Toys“R”Us Pets Vinyl Tire and Rope Animal: This crunchy squeaky toy can entertain pets with short attention spans. “Having a toy with different textures and surfaces will keep your puppy engaged for longer periods of time,” Dr. Yin said.
Incorporating problem-solving toys is crucial. “Research indicates that dogs who were given intelligence toys could learn positive reinforcement faster – like crossword puzzles for adults,” Dr. Yin said. Tug and fetch games encourage exercise while teaching impulse control. Try the:
- Toys“R”Us Pets Flying Disc: Durable and bright, this cloth disc is perfect for a game of fetch. “Fetch is one of the most efficient ways to exercise your dog and spend quality time,” Dr. Yin said.
- Toys“R”Us Pets Bungee Tire Animal: This fun tug toy has two grip options for comfortable game-playing. “The location of the tug holding areas allows the pet parent and dog to play together safely,” said Dr. Yin.
As dogs’ physical capabilities wane in senior years, opt for enrichment tools. “Dogs enjoy playing with toys less and less as they get older,” Dr. Yin said. Toys that encourage interaction and those they have previously associated with play are good choices. Examples include:
- Toys“R”Us Pets Squeaker Mat Dog Toy: This six-squeaker fleece toy is safe to throw and tug. “For older dogs who like squeakers but need more encouragement to play, a toy with five or six loud squeakers may be just right,” Dr. Yin said.
- Toys“R”Us Pets Dumbbell Treat: This toy allows treats to be hidden inside. “Toys such as food dispensers can improve brain development in puppies and slow down brain aging and onset of cognitive dysfunction in adult dogs,” Dr. Yin said.
Ultimately, the science behind play comes down to providing a range of options for healthy development.