Chance (my former dog, for those who are newer to the blog) was hell on toys. He loved to chew and pull on things and was a big dog with a very powerful set of chompers, so things didn't last too long around him. Due to this predilection for destruction, and the ridiculous cost of dog toys, we learned fairly quickly that Goodwill stuffed animals were the best way to go. Since they were just going to be gutted in short order anyway, it didn't much matter how ugly or silly looking they were.
Leo and Ata (current dogs) aren't anywhere near as hard on toys, or as excited about toys, as Chance was. They'll sniff and lick and lightly chew on anything new that comes into the house, but once they've thoroughly explored whatever it is, it's likely to sit in the toy basket for a month before either one of them thinks to pick it up again. We have holiday-specific stuffies from at least a year ago, and when something does get thrown out, it's usually because it's just gotten too damn dirty, not because it's been eviscerated.
So, since dog toys now have a longer life span, we have to buy fewer of them and look at the ones we do buy for longer. Time, perhaps, to step up the quality a notch from Goodwill leftovers.
And I've found the perfect thing.
Cheeky Squeaky Pets are just your basic plushies with squeakers, nothing all that exceptional, except they are SO DAMN CUTE. They come with their own funny names and little stories, and they make me smile when I look at them. They sell for about $10 each at pet stores and on their website, but they're also available at dog.com (my favorite source for dog stuff online--check out their prices on Greenies) for about $5. I added a couple of them to my last order on a whim, and the boys are loving them (and continuing to not tear them up). I think they're going to be my new go-to toy for people with new dogs/rescue homes. I'll just buy a bunch of them and keep them in my gift tub.
C'mon, doesn't your canine baby (or feline baby--I think they do cat toys too) need a new toy?