Playtime is an important part of your dog’s day-to-day life. It provides your dog with exercise and mental stimulation, and to your pup, playing is just plain fun. But not all dogs find the same toys engaging, and not all toys survive long enough to be enjoyed. Be it a rope, a ball, or a stuffed animal, finding a fun toy can be hard. And if your dog likes to play rough, finding a fun and durable toy can be even harder.
That’s where Ruff Dawg comes in. Ruff Dawg is a family-owned business dedicated to making fun, safe, and durable dog toys with premium materials. With a variety of different shapes and sizes, Ruff Dawg has a toy for every dog and every style of play. My Goldendoodle, Micah, and I had the joy of trying out Ruff Dawg’s Stick and Twig toys from their retriever line and I can happily say these toys did not disappoint. If your dog likes to play hard or simply loves a good toy, Ruff Dawg toys could be your best friend’s new best friend. Keep reading to find out!
At a Glance: What We Reviewed
|Stick and Twig
|Stick Crunch and Twig Crunch
About Ruff Dawg
Who Makes the Stick and Twig Toys and Where Are They Produced?
The Stick and Twig toys are designed, packaged, and manufactured in the USA and made by Ruff Dawg. Ruff Dawg’s story starts with Jefferson Rubber Works, a family-owned rubber molding company. In 1995, Jefferson Rubber Works was manufacturing rubber discs for water aeration. Like many manufacturing companies, not all products made it through the production phase, and the imperfect discs were tossed around by the company’s team members for fun.
It wasn’t until 1999 that the discs were made in different colors with the intention of being a dog toy. After successfully being tested by dog-owning employees, the disc became known as the K9-Flyer and a new division of Jefferson Rubber Works was created called Ruff Dawg. Today, Ruff Dawg is based in Worcester, Massachusetts, and offers a variety of durable rubber dog toys. With the motto “changing the way pets play”, Ruff Dawg is dedicated to developing fun dog toys for pups of all sizes.
Who Are Ruff Dawg Toys Best Suited For?
Any dog is going to love a good toy, and Ruff Dawg toys are no different. With all of the shapes, sizes, and colors, you’re bound to find a toy that fits your liking and your pup’s style of play. The toys even have a springy texture, which makes them perfect for teething puppies. That said, and as the name suggests, Ruff Dawg toys are designed for rough dogs that like to play hard, and I’m not talking about average play. These toys are weatherproof, waterproof, and made to get dirty. So, calling all water retrievers, fetching fanatics, and super chewers, because these toys are for you and your wild, playful, carefree spirits.
Now, if you’re still wondering whether your pup has perfected the craft of toy destruction enough to tear these toys apart, you can always choose from Ruff Dawg’s selection of Lifetime Guaranteed toys, like the Dawg-Buster or Dawg-Nut. That way, if your dog does manage to destroy the toy, you can get it replaced for free. (It’s important to note that the Stick and Twig toys are not included in this line).
Buying toys for your dog can be a challenge, especially if your pup likes to play hard. Luckily, Ruff Dawg toys have many great qualities that set them apart from other brands, including high-quality, durable materials, a range of colors and sizes, and many different uses. The company has even found ways to give back to their community, which means your purchase makes for a happy dog and helps people across the United States.
Equipped with a team of experts in the rubber industry and born from a leading supplier of rubber products, Ruff Dawg knows how to make safe, high-quality rubber dog toys. To ensure that your pup has a safe toy to play with, all of Ruff Dawg’s toys are made 100% in the USA with high-quality, FDA-approved materials, including recyclable rubber that’s free of Phalates and BPAs.
If you’re a firm believer that no dog toy is indestructible, Ruff Dawg toys might make you think twice. Ruff Dawg specifically designs their toys to be all-weather, go-hard, or go-home toys. And because these toys are made for go-getters, mud puddle jumpers, and water-happy pooches, they’ll hold up against just about anything you throw at them (or throw them into), including mud, water, and aggressive mouths without breaking down or losing color. The rubber material is also easy to clean. All it takes is one quick rinse-off and wipe-down, and the toy comes out looking brand new.
We’ve played fetch with the Stick toys daily (the Twigs are a bit small for Micah) and have yet to see signs of wear. Micah also gnaws at the Sticks throughout the day and there is no physical evidence of teeth marks or scratches.
From balls and cubes to flying fish and gummy bears (yes, like the candy), Ruff Dawg makes a variety of fun toys in an assortment of sizes and bright colors. When picking out a toy for Micah, I loved having a variety of options to choose from, especially since they’re fun and colorful, and I know Micah loves having different toys to play with. The bright neon colors also mean you’re likely to find the toy no matter how crazy the bounce is, how far the throw is, or how well your dog hides it.
The Stick and Twig toys are great because they’re not only brightly colored but multi-colored. They’re also made in two sizes to accommodate large and small dogs. The Stick is made for medium to large dogs and the Twig is made for small dogs.
Each Ruff Dawg toy is like a one-stop shop for all of your playtime adventures. While each toy has a unique charm of its own, all of the toys can be used for a variety of different games or provide hours of pastime entertainment.
The original Stick and Twig toys and Stick and Twig Crunch toys are great examples of this because they’re so versatile. On Ruff Dawg’s Toyfinder, the Stick and Twig toys are in nearly every category of play style, including retrieving toys (on land or in the water), tug toys, and multi-dog play toys. The original Stick and Twig toys are the perfect retrieving toys when playing fetch, and if you’re looking for something that makes noise, the Crunch toys are a great option. Ruff Dawg also advertises the Sticks and Twigs as toys you can fill with treats or string on a rope for extra fun. And if your pup loves the water, these toys float too!
The wide range of play options isn’t specific to the Stick and Twig toys either. When you look at any of Ruff Dawg’s toys, you’ll find that the play options are truly endless.
It’s no secret that Ruff Dawg has a big heart when it comes to dogs, but they also have a big heart when it comes to giving back. In addition to creating local jobs in their community, a really cool thing about Ruff Dawg is their partnership with Canines for Disabled Kids. Canines for Disabled Kids (CDK) is a non-profit organization in Worcester, Massachusetts that helps children and their families increase independence by connecting them with service dogs and training programs. CDK also supports families financially through their scholarship program and has staff that travels across the country to educate the public about service dogs. So, when you buy a Ruff Dawg toy, you’re not just buying an awesome toy for your pup, you’re also supporting local community efforts and an amazing charity.
Reviews of Ruff Dawg Products
1. Stick and Twig
As previously mentioned, the Stick and Twig toys are well-rounded toys that can be used for all kinds of different play. I use them the most for playing fetch with Micah. Micah enjoys catching toys in the air (or at least makes a good-faith effort to do so), and the Stick is perfect for this. The hollow design and soft, bendable rubber is easy on his teeth, and the toy itself provides the same fun as catching a real stick without the splinters. Since the toy is squeaker-less and doesn’t make any noise, I also love giving these to Micah on rainy days for some quiet, indoor entertainment.
When considering size, the Stick is 12 inches long and meant for medium to large dogs, and the Twig is 6 inches long and best suited for smaller breeds. Micah is 50 lbs and gravitated toward the Sticks since they are better suited for his size. However, I can imagine any small pup is going to love the Twigs just the same.
2. Stick Crunch and Twig Crunch
If your dog is a sensory pooch, the Stick and Twig Crunch toys are where it’s at. These toys have all the great features of the original Stick and Twig toys in addition to a special inner lining that gives them a crunchy sound and feel. They’re also perfect for indoor and outdoor use and are great alternatives to squeaker toys. Micah loves these toys and was instantly intrigued by the crunch noise. The sound is unlike anything I’ve ever heard in a dog toy and had me intrigued as well.
I will note that the inner lining of one of our Stick Crunch toys came out. This is something to be mindful of when buying this toy, especially if you leave your pup unattended. That being said, we have two Stick Crunch toys and the other one is still going strong, so it’s hard to say if this was a one-time occurrence. Even if the lining does come out, the toy is still functional. It just goes back to being an original Stick toy, which has perks of its own.
The sizing is identical to the original Stick and Twig toys, with the Stick Crunch being 12 inches long and great for medium to large dogs, and the Twig Crunch being 6 inches long and ideal for small dogs.
Our Experience with Ruff Dawg Stick and Twig Toys
Trying out Ruff Dawg’s Stick and Twig toys with Micah was so much fun! We had a great time playing with the toys, and I think it’s safe to say, Micah has found a new favorite.
We tested out the original Stick and Twig toys, as well as the Stick and Twig Crunch toys. The original toys and the Crunch toys are really similar except for the inner lining in the Crunch toys, which gives them a crunchy sound and feel.
Since puppyhood, Micah has loved any toy that makes noise, so the Crunch toys were instantly a favorite. From the first crunch of the Stick, Micah’s head was tilted, ears were perked, and tail was wagging all at the same time. Micah is also Mr. Life of the Party, and if he actually attended one, the Stick Crunch would be the first toy he’d grab to bring along. Not only does the cool crunch sound make for a great attention grabber but it’s the perfect toy for best buds to run with, tug with, or simply pal around with.
The original toys are a close second to the Crunch toys, and if you’re looking for something a little quieter, these are ideal. We use the original toys for indoor and outdoor games of fetch and tug, and the springy texture and hollow center make them great, engaging toys. Another fun thing you can do with these is make them into enrichment activities by filling the center with treats. The Crunch toys are fillable too, but we use the original toys so the Crunch lining stays clean.
Both styles are incredibly durable. Even though the Stick and Twig toys aren’t specifically made for chewing (their design is ideal for retrieval), the toys hold up really well during outdoor play and still look brand new with daily use and frequent cleaning. I love that the toys are brightly colored too! We’ve definitely lost a toy or two in long grass and dense bushes. And when it comes to snow, toys are as good as gone. But all of Ruff Dawg’s toys are brightly colored, which makes them highly visible in all kinds of terrain. The Stick and Twig toys are also one of Ruff Dawg’s only multi-colored toys, which adds a fun visual twist.
The only drawback we found is that the inner lining of one of our Stick Crunch toys came out. The lining is a plastic-like material and definitely not something you want your dog to get ahold of, so it’s best to keep an extra close eye on your pup while they play with this one. Despite this happening, I would still buy the toy again because Micah loved it so much. And in happy news, the toy is still perfectly good to use even without the inner lining. So that leaves the all-important question: Would we recommend Ruff Dawg toys? Our answer: Absolutely!
When it comes to dog toys, we’ve found a lot of good ones, a few great ones, and only a couple of outstanding ones. After trying out Ruff Dawg’s Stick and Twig toys, I can confidently say, these toys are outstanding. Between the safe, durable materials, versatile uses, and overall design, Ruff Dawg toys not only stand the test of time but are made to withstand rough-and-tumble play conditions. So whether your dog loves to play or lives for play, Ruff Dawg toys are the ones you want in your best bud’s toy bin.