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Fun in the Sun – The 6 Best Outdoor Dog Toys for 2020

Outdoor Toys for Dogs
Written by Rachael Sando

As we will all be spending more time outside over the next several months, we wanted to highlight some of our favorite outdoor dog toys. These are the type of toys that really aren’t suitable for play inside the home.  Things designed for the rough and tumble dog who craves exuberant play!

For this discussion, we will be excluding fetch toys like balls and frisbees but instead focusing on the toughest of dog toys.  Those that can be simply left out in the yard through any type of weather and remain no worse for the wear.

Scroll down to see the full list, but here’s a quick sneak peak!

The 6 Best Outdoor Dog Toys

Jolly Ball – Tug & Toss

If a toy was designed for horses, you know that it will be tough. The Jolly Ball was originally developed by a company called Horseman’s Pride who has since spun off the toy into its own brand called Jolly Pets.

Charlie Chewing on the Jolly Ball Tug-N-Toss dog toy in the back garden

There are several styles of Jolly Balls available, all consisting of a hollow sphere with a thick rubber exterior shell. This shell is tough yet still flexible. You have likely come across the classic version, known as the Tug & Toss, at one time or another. This model has a unique triangular handle allowing for all sorts of fun play opportunities.

Other Jolly Balls are available without a handle or even with an attached rope. They all come in several different sizes from 6” – 10” in diameter. It is interesting to note that the company even makes huge models for zoo animals like lions and tigers!

The Jolly Ball Tug-N-Toss is one of our favorite outdoor dog toys

We have the classic version with the built in handle. Not only does this make it easy to grab (for both you and your dog) but also easy to toss. The handle also causes unpredictable rolls and bounces due to the irregular shape!

Perhaps our favorite aspect of all is that since it is not inflated, instead just a hollow sphere, it cannot be popped. If your dog chews the handle off (likely), it is no worse for the wear and will be just as fun to toss and kick around. Ours has lost part of the handle and literally spent years sitting outdoors but is still going strong.

In our opinion, this is a toy that belongs in every backyard garden.

Click here to pick up the Jolly Ball on Amazon!

The Tuggo

Looking for a tough dog toy? Make sure to check out The Tuggo which is designed for serious play!

A bit of a newcomer on the market and one of our favorite finds of the last few years. The Tuggo dog toy is a hollow sphere constructed of an extremely tough and durable plastic. It also has a thick rope running through the center that is free moving – able to be pulled from side to side. 

It comes in multiple sizes depending on breed or play style, but what makes this toy most unique is that it can be filled with water to provide extra resistance. This toy already has some weight to it, so you can just imagine what it feels like full of water. 

Laila and Meera playing tug-of-war with the Tuggo Dog Toy

Playing with the small Tuggo!

Another fun option is to only fill it up partially. The sound of the water sloshing around inside will entice your dog to fetch and pounce. This movement will also cause the ball to roll and jiggle back and forth in a way that your dog won’t expect!

This toy is great for tossing, tugging, fetching and dragging and is a great form of exercise for your pet. It is also perfect for multi-dog households- as the rope will lead to some serious games of tug-o-war!

While a dog could certainly chew the rope if left unattended, I really can’t imagine a dog destroying the shell of the toy itself. And guess what – the rope is removable and replaceable!

Click here to pick up a Tuggo on Amazon

West Paw Design Zogoflex Toys

These were the first seriously tough dog toys that we ever found and a huge inspiration for creating this site. After wasting hundreds of dollars as poor college students on “tough dog toys” we were thrilled when we finally encountered West Paw Design.

The Tizzi from West Paw Design's is perfect for all weather play.

Their toys are formed from Zogoflex – a proprietary material that is flexible, buoyant and shockingly durable. It is completely non-toxic and made and sourced right here in America. Another thing we love is that it is also recyclable. If your dog does manage to tear it simply send it back – Not only do they offer a one time product replacement guarantee, but they will use the scraps to make a new toy!

Our first experience with West Paw was the bone shaped Hurley, though we quickly added the Bumi and the Tizzi to our toy chest. All varieties are great for chewing, tugging, and tossing and each has its own special quirk as well. For example, the Tizzi has a slot that can be stuffed with peanut butter, the Toppl filled with treats, the Zisc thrown like a frisbee and the Bumi stretched to twice its length!

These toys can withstand some serious abuse, making them prefect for an outdoor setting. Want to freshen them up? Toss them right in the dishwasher for a good cleaning!

Click here to shop West Paw Designs Toys on Amazon!

Zeus Bomber

The Zeus Bomber Dog Toy - for strong jaws and tough chewers.

Reminiscent of a basketball with handles, the Zeus Bomber is another tough toy perfect for outdoor play. It is constructed of 100% natural rubber and comes on multiple differ t sizes.

The first thing you should know about this toy is that it is heavy. For this reason we would only recommend for dogs with powerful jaws and strong necks. That being said, it is also extremely tough. 

Highlighting the Bomber - one of the toughest dog toys around.

This ball can be tossed or rolled a great distance and the handle makes it easy for your dog to carry back. Just be careful if you kick it – this ball is hard!

Great for all sorts of weather and conditions!

Click here to pick up the Zeus Bomber on Amazon

Kong Squeezz 

The Kong Squeezz toys are some of our favorite outdoor dog toys. We love the way they roll and bounce!

The KONG Squeezz was a hugely pleasant surprise for us. What first appears to be just a donut shaped squeaky toy, turns out to be a blast to play with.

The standard KONG Squeezz is roughly 6″ in diameter and comes in several bright colors. It has a unique recessed squeaker that makes a lot of noise when squeezed.

Where this toy really shines is fetch. We were amazed at how far this toy will roll and bounce. Whether you slam it hard into the ground or give it a long toss, it will bounce unpredictably and in a way that your dog will LOVE to chase!

KONG Squeezz is also available with a rope handle. This option is great for tug between you and your dog or multiple dogs. The high pitched squeaker is sure to keep them engaged in the game throughout.

Click here to pick up the KONG Squeezz Ring on Amazon!

The Puller

The Puller makes its way onto our list of the best outdoor dog toys.

When it comes to the best outdoor dog toys, you can’t leave the Puller off the list! Part toy, part exercise device, it is really a product in a class of its own. Each unit comes as a set of 2 rings and is available in a small and large size.

The rings are constructed of a shockingly durable foam that can withstand some serious pulling and chewing. Ours is over a year old and though it is clearly “well loved” it is no worse for the wear!!

The Puller can also be used as a dog training aid and exercise tool!

This toy is perfect for fetching, tugging, jumping, chasing and more. The real unique feature however, is having a second ring on hand at all times. This allows for interesting games as well as easy training for commands like drop it, leave it or stay. The puller also floats so the fun is not restricted to land!

Click here to pick up the Puller from Amazon

Looking for more tough dog toys? Don’t miss our exhaustive list of durable dog toys!

Does your dog have a favorite outdoor dog toy?

About the author

Rachael Sando

Rachael is a School Psychologist with degrees from the University of Rochester and RIT. Though a lifelong dog lover, this passion has taken on a new direction through the utilization of therapy animals in her day job. Charlie, our Golden Retriever, works with Rachael as a school therapy dog in a local primary school where he brings comfort and support to students and staff on a daily basis.


  • Bailie loves the Tuggo ball, and I could see her liking some tug a war with the ring. Other than that, we aren’t big into toys. I got my Kurgo Lawn Toys and they are something Bailie has fun with too. I bet you boys would like those!

    • Harley was never into toys so we had a big pile of unused ones until 2 years ago. Charlie on the other hand, is obsessed! He just loves to fetch and tug!

  • Kimberly of Keep the Tail Wagging is always talking about the :Puller” toys too! I think they would make a great addition to my outdoor stash. Thanks for the post. I also like the bomber ball. Jax will enjoy that one 🙂

    • The Puller is so much fun and can be used in so many different ways! You should definitely pick one up!

  • It is so hot here during the summer that most of our playtime is indoors. We do love the KONG toys and my granddog adores her Tuggo!

    • So much the opposite here in NY! You must soak up all the warmth and sunshine in whatever limited quantities it is available! ?

  • Thanks for the tips! We will try a few of these ourselves!! Beautiful smile goldens! Our favorite right now is still the Jolly Egg!

  • Ducky loves her Kong Bounzer! When I throw it for her out in the yard, it bounces in all different ways and she loves to try pouncing on it as it bounces.

    Shadow misses having Callie to play with…they used to make up their own games with the toys in the yard. Now we play with the ChuckIt! ball launcher. I “launch” the balls for her to chase and we play keep away in between each launch. We used to play our game with Callie, too.

  • Some of these are new to me, so we’re excited to try them. Amber has loved her Jolly ball for a long time now and I know she’ll love the others as well. Thanks for the great info!

  • I have an Olde English Bulldogge, Lexi and she LOVES her Jolly Ball. So much so that she has a few of them in different sizes…. and she won’t even share them with me! And you’re right, they are tough! Even though hers are a few years old and very well “loved” (missing and half gone handles and all), they still have a lot of life left in them. ? (Her favorite inside toy is her Kong Wubba, which we call “Wubby”)

  • My boy Buzz also likes the puller rings a lot!! (We won them in a contest from you guys and have really come to appreciate the company behind it!! LOVE their leather leashes & collars).

    He also has a Tuggo ball but will only occasionally pull it out of the toy chest. He lives for his chuck-it balls though 😉

  • These toys seem like so much fun for the dogs, especially the puller 😀 My dog likes to pull things so she would love it, I’m sure

    • Years later and our boys still use their Puller several times a week. It is amazingly durable!

  • My boy loves the jolly balls. They come in dog sizes or horse sizes, I bought the dog size for home, but when we were out at the horse farm he would steal the horse sized ones out of the horses stalls and carry them all over the place. I also got a big tire toy from Tractor Supply that they seem to enjoy a bit. Those are my 2 outside toys.

  • I will have to try out some of these toys, my 2 lovelies got bored with their old ones. Maybe I should start with the puller first since they love pulling robes and rags.