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10 Best Chew Toys For Cats in 2021 – Reviews & Top Picks

cat playing with a toy

Typically, dogs are the pet most often associated with chewing. However, cats chew too, though to a lesser extent than most canines do.

While your cat may not chew through your drywall or destroy your furniture, it may be in your best interest to purchase them a cat chew toy or two. These toys provide them with something suitable to chew on when their teeth hurt – or when you need to get their teeth cleaned in a low-stress way.

However, not all cat chew toys are made equal. It’s difficult to find cat chew toys as it is, but you should still ensure that you’re purchasing a high-quality option.

Below, we’ve reviewed some of the best cat chew toys on the market. Hopefully, one of these is suitable for your cat.

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A Quick Comparison of Our Favorites

Rating Image Product Details
Best Overall
Winner
Petstages Fresh Cat Chew Toy Petstages Fresh Cat Chew Toy
  • Stuffed with real mint
  • Netting to clean tartar
  • Durable
  • Best Value
    Second place
    Petstages Lil’ Avocato Cat Toy Petstages Lil’ Avocato Cat Toy
  • Outside netting to clean teeth
  • Catnip scent
  • Machine washable
  • Premium Choice
    Third place
    CatTwig Silver Vine Cat Chew Toy CatTwig Silver Vine Cat Chew Toy
  • Resealable bag
  • Made from silver vine
  • Effects last for up to 30 minutes
  • Petstages Dental Kitty Chew Wheel Petstages Dental Kitty Chew Wheel
  • Massages gums
  • Non-toxic materials
  • Two tassels to encourage play
  • Petstages Dental Banana Petstages Dental Banana
  • Wrapped in netting to clean teeth
  • Lightweight for batting
  • Scented with catnip
  • hepper single cat paw divider

    The 10 Best Chew Toys for Cats – Reviews & Top Picks

    1. Petstages Fresh Breath Mint Stick Cat Chew Toy – Best Overall

    Petstages Cat Chew Toy

    Material: Polyester
    Catnip: No

    The Petstages Fresh Breath Mint Stick Cat Chew Toy is the best overall chew toy for cats available. It is lightweight to make for easing batting and is filled with a minty scent to make your cat’s breath smell a bit better.

    It is specifically designed for chewing, unlike some of the other toys on the market.

    The durable netting helps remove soft tartar and clean your pet’s teeth while they chew. It is durable enough to stand up to quite a bit of chewing and won’t easily unravel. The crinkly material of the leaves encourages cats to chew and clean their teeth in the process.

    The inside of the toy is stuffed with real dried mint. You can refresh the scent by pressing and rolling the center stem, which will encourage the mint inside to release more oils.

    Furthermore, this toy is not expensive in the least. In fact, it is one of the cheaper options on the market.

    Pros
    • Stuffed with real mint
    • Netting to clean tartar
    • Durable
    • Mint scent can be refreshed
    Cons
    • Some cats are simply uninterested

    2. Petstages Lil’ Avocato Cat Toy with Catnip – Best Value

    Petstages Lil' Avocato Cat Toy

    Material: Polyester
    Catnip: Yes

    For those looking for an extremely cheap toy, you might want to consider the Petstages Lil’ Avocato Cat Toy with Catnip. This little toy is specifically designed for dental health. The outer layer is made with a mesh material, which is meant to clean your cat’s teeth while they chew.

    The toy itself is lightweight and great for cats that like batting. It isn’t an interactable toy, so you can’t play with your cat. However, many cats like it nevertheless.

    If your cat likes catnip, you’ll appreciate that this toy is stuffed with it. All cats have a different reaction to catnip. If your feline is particularly drawn to it, the scent may encourage them to chew on it.  This toy cannot be re-stuffed with catnip, though. Once the smell is gone, it is gone.

    This toy is machine washable. However, the catnip smell will come off, as you could likely guess.

    Because of all these features and the toy’s low price, this is easily the best chew toy for cats for the money.

    Pros
    • Lightweight
    • Outside netting to clean teeth
    • Catnip scent
    • Machine washable
    Cons
    • Not refillable

    3. CatTwig Silver Vine Cat Chew Toy – Premium Choice

    CatTwig Silver Vine Cat Chew Toy

    Material: Grass/Hay
    Catnip: No

    For felines that need something a little bit extra, the CatTwig Silver Vine Cat Chew Toy may be a good option. This toy is described as the “new catnip.” It is made out of silver vine, which many cats like just as much as catnip. It’s an all-natural, high-potency toy that features exfoliating bark to help keep your cat’s gums and teeth clean.

    We also liked that these twigs come with a resealable bag, which helps keep them fresh and locks in the scent.

    The effects of this treat last for about 20–30 minutes, which is typically longer than catnip. However, some cats do not have a reaction to it at all. The only way to know is to try and see.

    This pack comes with multiple sticks, with each stick offering plenty of scent to get your cat interested. However, it is a bit disappointing to end up with many sticks if your feline doesn’t react to silver vine. There is not a smaller pack to try, either.

    Pros
    • Resealable bag
    • Made from silver vine
    • Effects last for up to 30 minutes
    • Rough bark to clean your cat’s teeth
    Cons
    • Not all cats are reactive to silver vine

    4. Petstages Dental Kitty Chew Wheel

    Petstages Dental Kitty Chew Wheel

    Material: Thermoplastic Rubber
    Catnip: No

    If your feline doesn’t care for the toys we’ve mentioned thus far, you might want to try the Petstages Dental Kitty Chew Wheel. This toy is made from rubber, which is not typically a cat favorite. However, some cats really like chewing on rubber, especially when they are teething.

    This ring is specifically designed to massage their gums and teeth, which is especially useful for cats that are experiencing gum pain. It looks a lot like a baby teether in this way.

    Of course, the ring is made from completely non-toxic materials.

    There are two tassels that hang off of this toy as well. These are useful for cats that need a bit of encouragement to use the toy. They’re extra-fun during playtime.

    Whether or not your cat likes this toy is mostly a matter of personal preference. Many users reported that their cats didn’t like the rubber, which is to be expected.

    Pros
    • Massages gums
    • Non-toxic materials
    • Two tassels to encourage play
    Cons
    • Most cats don’t like rubber

    5. Petstages Dental Banana

    Petstages Dental Banana

    Material: Polyester
    Catnip: Yes

    The Petstages Dental Banana is your average dental toy in a lot of ways. It is mostly made out of polyester, which lends itself well to batting and swatting. For cats that don’t need much encouragement to play, this is a solid option. It is lightweight, so it travels quite far when hit.

    This toy is wrapped in netting along the outside, which is meant to help clean your cat’s teeth while they chew. How well this works is debatable, though.

    For cats who love catnip, the catnip included in this toy may encourage your feline to use it. It is also scented with mint to improve your cat’s breath as they chew. Some cats are a bit turned off by the mint flavor, but many do not mind it at all.

    The banana shape of this toy makes it perfect for grabbing and chewing. However, like with all toys, your cat’s personal preferences should be kept in mind as well.

    Pros
    • Wrapped in netting to clean teeth
    • Lightweight for batting
    • Scented with catnip
    Cons
    • Doesn’t encourage much play
    • Some cats are turned off by the mint

    6. Petstages Dental Cat Chew Toy with Catnip

    Petstages Dental Cat Chew Toy

    Material: Polyester
    Catnip: Yes

    If you’re looking for a chew toy, Petstages Dental Cat Chew Toy with Catnip may be a solid option. This package actually comes with two different toys. Both of them have the same design and are quite similar, though.

    These toys are made for batting and swatting. They both come with tassels to encourage play. And, if the tassels weren’t enough, each one is scented with catnip to encourage interest. If your cat reacts to catnip, they will probably love this toy.

    The outside netting is designed to remove tartar from your cat’s teeth. When chewed, the toys make a crinkly sound. Some cats go crazy for this sound, while others don’t.

    Like most toys, whether or not your cat actually plays with these is hit-or-miss. Some love them, but others hardly touch them. They are also quite small, so be sure to carefully check the dimensions before you buy!

    Pros
    • Catnip included
    • Tassels to encourage play
    • Outside netting to clean teeth
    Cons
    • Very small
    • Not interactive enough for some cats

    7. Petstage Dental Shrimpies Cat Chew Toy

    Petstage Dental Shrimpies Cat Chew Toy

    Material: Polypropylene
    Catnip: Yes

    Some cats absolutely love the Petstage Dental Shrimpies Cat Chew Toy. Each shrimpie is wrapped in a mesh material, which works like floss to help clean your cat’s teeth. Plus, each small toy includes catnip on the inside, which encourages your feline to play.

    The feather tail is absolutely adored by many cats. There are very few cats that can withstand the call of a feather. However, we did find that many cats prefer to chew on the feather instead of the toy, which isn’t terribly useful if you’re trying to clean their teeth.

    This toy does make a crinkly sound when chewed on, which some cats absolutely adore. On the other hand, some cats don’t care much for the sound. It’s all a matter of personal preference.

    For the most part, this toy is durable. However, the feathers come off far too easily – a common problem with most feather toys on the market.

    Pros
    • Mesh lining to clean teeth
    • Crinkly sound
    • Feathers to encourage play
    Cons
    • Very small
    • Feathers easily fall off

    8. Catit ECOCat Sisal Cylinder Cat Toy

    Catit ECOCat Sisal Cylinder Cat Toy

    Material: Cardboard, Sisal
    Catnip: No

    Finally, a toy made by a different brand! Sadly, the Catit ECOCat Sisal Cylinder Cat Toy isn’t the best in terms of dental health or encouraging playtime. Some cats absolutely love it, while others hardly touch it.

    This cylinder-shaped toy is made with different layers of corrugated cardboard and sisal ends. Cats typically love both cardboard and sisal, so you would imagine this to be an instant hit. There are some tassels included on end as well, which encourage play.

    The sisal can clean your cat’s teeth if they chew on it. It is also great for your cat’s claws, as sisal is the material commonly used on scratching posts.

    With that said, you are essentially paying for cardboard. This toy is more durable than most, but there is still something weird about paying for what is basically cardboard. Plus, as you’d expect, this toy is not durable in the least.

    Many users reported that it fell apart after a few play sessions. However, this isn’t terribly surprising, given the materials it’s made out of.

    Pros
    • Sisal included for teeth and claw health
    • Tassels added to encourage play
    • Inexpensive
    Cons
    • Literally made of cardboard
    • Not very durable

    9. Catit EcoCat Sisal Fish Cat Toy

    Catit EcoCat Sisal Fish Cat Toy

    Material: Cardboard, Sisal
    Catnip: No

    When you combine feathers and sisal, most cats absolutely have a ball. Usually, these are the materials you find on a cat scratching post. However, the Catit EcoCat Sisal Fish Cat Toy combines them into a toy.

    The sisal is good for your cat’s claws and teeth. The smaller size of the toy makes it more likely that your cat is going to chew on it. (Your feline probably isn’t going to try and wrap their jaws around a scratch post.)

    The feathers encourage plenty of play. Nearly all cats love playing and tearing up feathers.

    With all that said, this toy is literally made out of cardboard. It is basically a piece of cardboard in the shape of a fish that has been wrapped with sisal. As you might imagine, this makes it quite breakable. Many reviewers mentioned that this toy broke down after only a few play sessions.

    Pros
    • Feathers included encouraging play
    • Sisal for teeth and claw care
    Cons
    • Made of cardboard
    • Not durable

    10. KONG Kitty Kong Cat Toy

    KONG Kitty Kong Cat Toy

    Material: Rubber
    Catnip: No

    Most people know about the Kong line of toys, which is typically advertised as being for dogs. However, the KONG Kitty Kong Cat Toy is specifically designed for felines.

    For the most part, this toy is exactly like those designed for felines, except it is smaller to accommodate a cat’s smaller size. This toy does offer an unpredictable bounce that most felines get a kick out of. However, it is a bit heavy, so cats often have a hard time batting it around and throwing it into the air. It may be a good option if you’re looking for a throwable toy, though.

    Because the middle is hollow, you can add in treats and catnip if you want.

    However, cats aren’t dogs. Most of them are not going to chew on rubber, especially just plain rubber like this Kong ball. You can’t make a dog toy smaller and expect a cat to play with it.

    Plus, this toy is also quite expensive. You’re mostly paying for the KONG name, not higher-quality materials or a well-designed toy.

    Pros
    • Fillable
    • Durable
    Cons
    • Not exciting to most cats
    • Doesn’t encourage chewing
    • Extremely small

    Buyer’s Guide

    There are hundreds of cat toys on the market. However, choosing one for your feline isn’t as simple as just selecting the top-rated option. Your cat’s preferences should be taken into account before purchasing any toy.

    Plus, different toys are best for different situations. Of course, if you’re in this article, you’ll likely be looking for something to help with your feline’s teeth. However, even within the relatively small category of “cat chew toys,” there are countless options.

    Cat playing with stick
    Image Credit: Abigail Crawford, Shutterstock

    Teething vs. Dental Cleaning Toys

    When companies make “chew toys” for cats, they are generally making them either for teething felines or to help clean your cat’s teeth. While these toys are both designed to be chewed on, they function differently.

    For instance, most teething toys are rubber and bumpy. These massage your pet’s gums to fight against some of the pain.

    On the other hand, toys designed to help keep your cat’s teeth clean are often covered with mesh or a similar material. These work similarly to floss when your cat chews on them.

    As you can see, these types of chew toys are similar but fairly different. Therefore, you should be careful to purchase the option that your cat needs. Not all chew toys are the same.

    The Type of Chew Toy Matters

    The point of a chew toy is for your feline to chew on them, obviously. In some cases, you may not have to do much to encourage chewing. For instance, many teething cats are going to chew regardless, so it is more of a matter of redirecting their chewing to the correct toy – instead of your shoes.

    However, if you’re trying to help your cat’s teeth stay a bit cleaner, you may have to encourage them to chew.

    In this case, the type of toy matters. Most cats will clean while batting toys around and kicking them with their feet. Therefore, you should look for toys that are designed to do just that. The banana toy we reviewed above is a perfect example of that. The banana shape makes it very easy for your feline to wrap its limbs around it.

    Additives like catnip can also encourage chewing. Silver vine is similar to catnip. So, if your cats don’t react to catnip, you may be able to use silver vine instead. However, some cats don’t react to the silver vine as well, which can make encouraging chewing a bit more difficult.

    Durability

    Chew toys are going to get chewed on. That’s their purpose, after all. Therefore, you should ensure that the toys are plenty durable enough to withstand plenty of chewing. A chew toy that breaks down after being chewed isn’t very helpful in the least!

    Toys with feathers are often less durable than those without. Feathers come off easily in most cases. If your cat doesn’t mind playing with a toy without the feathers, then this may be a suitable option. However, many cats will pay more attention to the feathers than the actual chew toy, which isn’t helpful when you’re trying to clean their teeth.

    You can also keep an eye on the material, which usually gives you a clue as to the toy’s durability. In many cases, a toy that’s made of fabric or rubber will stand up to toys made of other materials. Rubber is often the most durable material, but most cats don’t actually like chewing on rubber.

    Therefore, a fabric of some sort is often your best option.

    Your Cat’s Preferences

    Cat playing with a cat chew toy
    Image Credit: kou2341, Shutterstock

    Of course, your cat’s preferences also matter. In many cases, your cat will already have a type of toy that they like. Therefore, you should try to find a chew toy that is similar to these already well-liked toys.

    If your cat is very active, you probably won’t have much trouble trying to get them to play with whatever toy you’re using. However, if your cat is not active, you’ll probably have to put in a bit more work.

    In these cases, toys with tassels, feathers, and other hard-to-resist add-ons are usually your best option. Catnip can also be added to encourage many cats to play. Different cats are attracted to different things, so be sure to consider what your cat likes.

    In the end, the best way to determine which chew toy is best for your cat is to buy a few. You’re never going to know what your feline likes until you give it to them. Luckily, chew toys are pretty cheap, so you likely won’t have any problems buying more than one.

    hepper single cat paw divider

    Final Thoughts

    If you’re looking for a first chew toy for your feline, we recommend the Petstages Fresh Breath Mint Stick Cat Chew Toy. This toy is quite straightforward, featuring a mesh that cleans your cat’s teeth while they chew. It is best for active cats who are likely going to play with anything, though.

    As a budget option, we recommend the Petstages Lil’ Avocato Cat Toy with Catnip. This toy is small and perfect for batting and throwing. It contains catnip on the inside and is covered in netting to clean your cat’s teeth.

    If you want to try something different and have a bit more to spend, the CatTwig Silver Vine Cat Chew Toy is an interesting option. These twigs are advertised to work similarly to catnip, but their hard twig shape also makes them suitable chew toys.

    Hopefully, one of these options fits your cat’s needs and preferences. If not, check out our reviews for more options.


    Featured Image Credit: socreative media, Shutterstock