What Are The Best Toys For Smart Dogs?

Written by: Dr. Katy Nelson

November 7, 2018

Updated 11/14!

Looking for a gift to blow your pup’s mind? Spoil them with a BarkBox! Every month, receive two original toys, designed in-house, two full-size bags of all-natural treats, and a savory chew. Sign up here and get a free extra toy every month. <– This deal is worth up to $120 in value if you sign up for a 12-month subscription!


A busy dog is a happy dog! Aside from taking dogs for walks or runs, it’s good to find engaging activities to occupy their minds. This is especially important for smart working breeds that are excellent at tasks, like the Border Collie or the German Shepherd. No matter the breed, every dog can benefit from mental stimulation on a regular basis to alleviate boredom and unhappiness. Here’s a list of toys for smart dogs so your brainiac Einstein pupper can keep themself out of trouble!

Puzzle Toys

Puzzle toys are a good way to keep your smart pup interested and use up some of that mental energy. There is a puzzle that will work for each dog, everything from the Treat Maze for beginner pups to the Dog Twister Puzzle for seasoned puzzlers. All of the fun, treat filled twist and turns of these toys will keep that brain going for hours.

Plush Toys

While classic plush toys are a must-have for all pups, they might not be enough to keep that brain occupied for long. Multipart toys, like Clam Overboard, are perfect for smart dogs. Not only do they feature more than one toy, there are so many different play options. If they get bored with a game of fetch, hide-and-seek is a fun game as well.

And if multipart toys aren’t quite your pup’s thing, look for toys with awesome features like crinkle paper or multiple squeakers. Pups react to new sounds and textures so introducing new toys are must. Toys like Mulligan Malarkey are filled with squeakers, crinkle and fluff. Oh my!

Super Chewer

For any food motivated smart dog, Super Chewer treat dispensing toys, like the Treat Lock Tread Ball, are a must have. While on their own these toys might seem a little less of a challenge for your brainiac, there are some tricks to keep them intrigued. Mixing your pup’s favorite treat with a liquid, stuffing the rubber treat dispensing toy and then plopping it in the freezer is a great way to add an extra challenge to a favorite toy.

Or if your smart pup just needs something a little extra to chew on then the Benebone Pawplexer is the perfect fit. This toy provides a little bit of a challenge trying to get out their favorite chew while also giving them something extra to chomp on.


The hardest part of having a smart dog is keeping them occupied time and time again. If this is the cause with your dog, then the BarkBox is a perfect fit. Each month a surprise of toys, treats and chews will find their way to your pup’s paws. Let’s face it, what dog wouldn’t get excited for new toys?

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
Written by: Dr. Katy Nelson

November 7, 2018

Nutritionist-crafted food for your dog's breed or mix.

Recipes designed for dogs' individuality



A themed collection of BARK-designed toys, treats, and chews.


A themed collection of BARK-designed toys, treats, and chews.