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10 Cult Dog Products All New Pet Parents Need

Technically, you can live without this stuff, but we don’t recommend it.

by Casey Gueren
Updated January 15, 2022
Puppy playing with KONG toy

Your pet wants you to read our newsletter. (Then give them a treat.)

We’ve come a long way from the days of cartoon-sized dog bones. These days, there are myriad toys and puzzles on the market that can entertain, stimulate, and soothe your dog. If you’re lucky enough to be in the buy-all-the-fun-things stage, we’re here to help. Here are the most game-changing products that come highly recommended from real pet parents.

Btw, our editors (and their pets) picked out these products. They’re always in stock at the time we publish, but there’s a chance they’ll sell out. If you do buy through our links, we may earn a commission. (We’ve got a lot of toys to buy over here, you know?)

Most people measure their pet-parent journey in terms of “before Kong” and “after Kong” — that’s how life-changing it is. You can keep your pup occupied for ages by hiding food and treats inside this rubber toy. Basically, what Sesame Street does for human parents, Kong does for pet parents. It comes in several sizes and colors, so you can find one that works for your champion chewer.

$14 at Chewy

As good company as you are, your dog will occasionally get bored, leading them to do something like, oh, we don’t know, eat drywall (yes, it happens). The solution: keep your pet mentally stimulated with puzzle toys. Nina Ottosson is an award-winning pet puzzle designer. This one lets you hide treats or kibble in various compartments, giving your pup something fun to do while you’re on a Zoom call.

$14 at Chewy

As a dog parent, it’s mortifying to reach into your pocket after your dog poops only to find that you are out of poop bags. To avoid finding yourself in that awkward position (and the scanning the sidewalk for leaves or other options for cleaning up after your dog that follows) we suggest signing up for a poop bag and butt wipe delivery that lands on your doorstep every other month. Trust us, there’s no such thing as too many poop bags.  

$27 at Dogdrop

Curious which breeds make up that perfect mix you just adopted? Your dog isn’t losing sleep over their family tree but discovering their genetic makeup will help you better pet parent. Not only is the breed big reveal exciting (I always knew you had some Chihuahua in you, Taco!), it may also explain some of your dog’s quirks, i.e. why your Aussie Cattle Dog corrals your family like a flock of sheep. Plus, this DNA test screens for more than 200 hereditary conditions so you can tailor your dog’s healthcare to their individual needs. *

$160 at Wisdom Panel

* Wisdom Panel and GREENIES are Kinship brands. We think their products are pretty cool, but we don’t play favorites. So, when a product has family ties, we’ll be real with you.

Casey Gueren

Casey Gueren is a writer, editor, and content strategist. You can find her work at SELF, BuzzFeed, Women's Health, Cosmopolitan, and others.