Interactive toys are not only fun and engaging, but also great mental stimulation for your dogs!  Outward Hound Treat Balls make for a fun activity with Fido, and provide plenty of benefits for you and your dog. Ultimately, treat balls keep dogs entertained, provide mental stimulation, and are great for slow feeding. Overall, if you’re looking for a new and exciting toy for Fido, the Outward Hound Treat Balls are worth looking into. Without delay, let’s tell you all about these treat toys!

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About the Company: Outward Hound

Outward Hound is a trusted brand of nearly 25 years, who pride themselves on innovation. They create some of the most well known and widely recognizable interactive dog toys and games, dog feeders, and outdoor travel gear for dogs on the market. As a company whose mission statement is centered around innovation, it only makes sense that they are the logical place to start for your pup’s first interactive dog toy.

outward hound

We have found that some of their toys hold up to even the toughest chewers, and their accessories are top notch. From life jackets to plush toys, to durable chew toys, Outward Hound is able to provide quality products at an affordable price. They have a variety of brands, such as Petstages, Nina Ottosson, Charming Pet, Dublin Dog, and Bionic. Each one specializes in different types of dog toys, so you can find something for all of your dog’s needs. No matter how your pup plays, Outward Hound will have a toy that your dog can get excited about.

Outward Hound Hide-A-Treat Ball

Main Benefits
  • Durable TPR rubber
  • Top rack dishwasher safe
  • BPA, PVC, & phthalate free
  • 2 chutes for treats to fall out of
  • Keeps your pup playing longer

At approximately the size of a baseball, the Outward Hound Hide-A-Treat Ball is great for small and medium sized dogs. Your pup will love rolling the ball around and being rewarded with treats falling out of the chutes! Specifically, the ball is 2.5” wide. Many online customers say the toy is smaller than they expected, so make sure to consider the measurements before ordering. Due to the size, only a small handful of kibble or training treats will fit in these balls. Unfortunately, this puzzle treat ball won’t be as suitable for extra large pups. Not to worry, we have some big breed friendly toys coming up next!

We love that this interactive toy is dishwasher safe, because it makes cleaning easier than ever. Just place it on the top rack of your dishwasher, and you’ll be good to go! Also, the puzzle treat ball is made of durable TPR rubber and is BPA, PVC, and phthalate free. Although the rubber is durable, it is not meant for aggressive chewers. You should only let your dog use this as an interactive treat dispenser, and not for chew sessions.

Outward Hound Nina Ottosson Treat Tumble Ball

Main Benefits
  • BPA free, non-toxic, food safe plastic
  • Durable structure
  • Bounces for added fun
  • Two holes for treats
  • Level 1 difficulty for beginners
  • Multiple sizes
  • Keeps your dog playing longer

Nina Ottoson is a brand by Outward Hound, which specializes in interactive puzzle games for dogs. If your pup has never played with a puzzle treat ball before, the Outward Hound Nina Ottosson Treat Tumble Ball will be a great place to start. The plastic is BPA free, non-toxic, and food safe, so you can be sure it’s safe for your furbaby. At a level 1 difficulty, this treat dispenser will be suitable for beginners. As your pup learns how to get a treat out, you can move them up to a more difficult toy. To see more puzzle toys by Nina Ottosson, check out our Outward Hound Nina Ottosson Puzzle Dog Games Article.

This ball has a fun bounce, which will be great for tossing in your yard or at the park. Offering a durable structure, this puzzle treat ball will stand up to plenty of rough play. After tossing it around in your yard, you can wipe off the exterior to clean it. Although it is easy to clean the outer portion of the ball, cleaning the inside may be more of a challenge. The ball doesn’t open, so it can be hard to clean the interior. Unlike the Hide A Treat Ball, you won’t be able to simply put it in the dishwasher.

Fortunately, this toy comes in two sizes to meet the needs of most size dogs. Although it comes in a small size, smaller dogs might have trouble picking the toy up in their mouth. However, the purpose of the toy isn’t necessarily for your dog to carry it around. A small pup can still nudge, roll, and tumble the ball to get treats to dispense. Specifically, the sizes include:

  • Small: 4.8” x 5” x 8”
  • Large: 5.75″ x 6.25″ x 8″

Outward Hound Petstages Challenge Ball

Main Benefits
  • Three adjustable difficulty levels
  • 100% natural rubber
  • 2 in 1 design for treat dispensing and fetch
  • Soft, yet durable
  • Keeps your dog playing longer

Specializing in chewing, scratching, and playing solutions, Petstages is another successful brand by Outward Hound. Whether your dog is an expert or a beginner, the Outward Hound Petstages Challenge Ball will be a perfect match. There are three difficulty levels, which you can adjust to fit the needs of your pup. Each level has a different size opening, giving you more options within one toy.

Made with 100% natural rubber, this interactive toy will be safe for your dog. The soft, yet durable rubber is perfect for this 2 in 1 design. You can either use it as a treat dispenser, or toss it for a game of fetch with Fido. No matter how you use the Outward Hound Petstages Challenge Ball, your dog will have a blast playing with it!

At about the size of a softball, the toy measures at 6.5″ x 5.5″ x 3.8″. Unfortunately, small dogs might have a hard time using this ball for fetch. The Outward Hound Petstages Challenge Ball is on the larger side, so it will be difficult for an extra small pup to carry it in their mouth. However, all size dogs will be able to use the toy as a treat dispenser.

Are the Outward Hound Treat Balls right for my dog?

No matter what size dog you have, there’s a treat ball for them in our list. Among the three Outward Hound Treat Balls that we cover, you can find a variety of sizes and features to meet the needs of your pup. If you have a food motivated dog, treat balls are going to be of great use. A food motivated pup will love this activity, because their hard work is rewarded with a yummy treat! In addition, if your dog eats their food way too fast, a treat ball can help slow them down. All in all, these treat toys will be an effective way to keep your dog entertained when you’re not actively play with them.

Why Use Outward Hound Treat Balls?

Mental Stimulation

Keeping your dog’s brain healthy is just as important as their physical health. By providing them with mental stimulation, they can learn new things and stay occupied. For example, using an Outward Hound puzzle treat ball requires your pup to use their brain, which keeps their mental health strong. Dogs love a challenge, so interactive toys will be a new favorite for Fido!

Reduces Boredom

Since treat balls are mentally stimulating, they will be a great way to reduce your dog’s boredom. Your dog will be focused on trying to get a treat out, keeping them busy for plenty of time. If your dog becomes bored, it could lead to many unwanted behaviors, such as:

  • Destructive chewing
  • Excessive barking
  • Digging
  • Depression
  • Getting into things (like the trash)

Yikes! Anyone could agree that those behaviors are worrisome. Fortunately, an interactive toy can prevent these behaviors from happening. The Outward Hound Treat Balls will help your pup release their energy, so they never have to succumb to boredom.

Works As a Slow Feeder

Some pups eat too fast, which can lead to some health problems. When dogs gulp down their food too quickly, they might swallow air along with their meal. As a result, it  could cause your dog to suffer from a condition known as “bloat.” This is a life threatening condition, so it is important to be aware and take caution. If you have a dog who eats too fast, puzzle treat balls can be a lot of help. Essentially, a treat dispenser makes your pup to work for their food, forcing them to eat their food slowlyr. Another way to slow down your dog’s eating habits is to use a slow feeder bowl. In fact, you can learn all about these bowls in our Slow Feeder Dog Bowls Review.

what about the mess?

To avoid making a mess in your house, we suggest having your dog play with their treat toy on hard surfaces. This will prevent crumbs from getting in your carpet, blankets, or furniture. Even better, you can play with your puzzle toy outside keep your house clean.

Unfortunately, most treat balls do not open for cleaning, which isn’t typically a problem unless you try to use wet food to fill it. As long as you use dry food and treats, you won’t have any issues cleaning the ball out. The Hide A Treat Ball is dishwasher safe, which will make cleaning much easier. However, you will need to wash the Nina Ottosson Treat Tumbler and the Petstages Challenge Ball by hand. Simply use warm soapy water to wash the treat ball, and make sure to thoroughly rinse it. Once it’s dry, you’ll be ready to start playing again!

What Do I Fill the Treat Ball With?


Zukes Mini Naturals Dog Treats are a great option for the Outward Hound Puzzle Treat Balls. Small and delicious, these treats will be a perfect reward for your pup’s hard work. We’ve become fans of these treats, and you can even read all about them in our Zuke’s Mini Naturals Dog Treats Review.

If you don’t want to purchase new treats, you can simply fill the toy with your dog’s favorite kibble. Also, you can use dog safe human food. For example, Cheerios are a safe snack and tend to fit in majority of puzzle treat balls. Ultimately, any treat small enough to fit in the holes will work just fine.