There are a number of things to bear in mind when buying toys for your dog to ensure you can both enjoy them safely. Always consider:

Size: The toy should be appropriate for your dog's size - small toys that are the right size for a Chihuahua will be too small for larger dogs, and might be accidentally swallowed. Toys that are too big will be difficult for your pet to play with, and they won't benefit from using them.

Material: Ensure that the toy you're buying is hardy enough to withstand your dog's chewing habits. Even with toys made from hard-wearing rubber, check them occasionally to make sure there are no parts breaking off which could be swallowed.

Shape: Toys which resemble household objects do look amusing, but your dog might not be able to distinguish between a toy shoe and a real one! This is especially important in a home which also has children, so try to distinguish between the two as much as possible.

Dye and Colouring: Pets generally don't mind what colour their toys are - they are, after all, colour-blind - but it's useful to have brightly-coloured toys for humans to find when they get lost! Make sure your toy is made with good quality dye that won't stain bedding or be ingested by your dog.

Construction: Some toys may have string or ribbons attached, which could be consumed by your dog. These toys are fine to play with while you supervise, but anything with parts like this should be kept in an out-of-reach area.