Nothing beats a new toy. But pets can be as particular about their playthings as you are about your shoes. These fun options were the paws-down favorites.
Tennis-Ball Stick, $9 If your dog loves tennis balls but can't seem to catch them on the fly, try this fetch stick―an easy-to-chomp toy made of tennis-ball material with a bonus squeaker inside. To buy: Air Kong fetch stick, petsmart.com for stores.
Triangle Fetching Disc, $14 Forget the plain old Frisbee you got at the company picnic. Your discriminating pup will no doubt prefer this nylon-and-rubber fetching toy. It's sturdy enough to stand up to outdoor play but easier on teeth and gums. To buy: Floyd fetching toy, cheengoo.com.
Rough Toy, $10 Made of recycled fire hoses, this tough toy is virtually indestructible. It even floats, so you can play fetch at the lake or the beach. After a few sessions, toss it in the dishwasher. To buy: The Jilly Bean by Katie's Bumpers, bigpawdesigns.com.
Catnip Toys, $11 Each Slip a bag of catnip into one of these leather toys and tie up the end. The scent will drive kitty bonkers, and you won't have to follow her with the vacuum. The irresistible bells and strings make these a must-pounce. To buy: Auburn Leathercrafters cat toy, collarsandmore.com.
Fruit and Vegetable Chew Toys, $7 to $15 Each These mint-flavored produce-shaped toys, which can be filled with treats, got howls of approval from the canine panel. And every purchase supports the Planet Dog Foundation to help train assistance dogs. To buy: Orbee-Tuff produce toys, planetdog.com.
Cat-Toy Box, $30 Search and destroy is George's M.O. Hide multiple toys and treats in this wooden box and let your intrepid tabby go wild. One tester's cat went crazy poking her paws into the holes trying to catch a ball. To buy: Peek-a-Prize by SmartCat, esmartcat.com.
Organic Animals, $19 Each A satisfyingly squeaky plush toy will delight your dog for hours. And you will feel good, too, knowing that it's made with organic cotton and natural plant dyes. To buy: SimplyFido organic pet toys, trixieandpeanut.com.
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Pet Toys for Traveling
Long trips and strange places can be stressful, but a few creature comforts will make it easier when the fur flies…or rides. (Did that meow sound like "Are we there yet?")
Travel Bag and Bowls, $30 for a Set Stow your dog's dishes and his dinner in one soft-sided container. Perfect for squishing into the overpacked car. Testers preferred this set to lugging around cumbersome hard bowls. To buy: ABO Gear Dog Tucker Traveler, abogear.com.
Backpack, $15 Let Max carry his supplies in his own backpack. With two pouches, there's room for treats, plastic bags, and a toy. To buy: Outward Hound Urban Adventure Backpack or Excursion Dog Backpack, petsmart.com.
Travel Leash, $12 This short leash clips onto a dog's collar and wraps neatly around his neck, fastened with Velcro, until you need it. Visiting a rest stop or a roadside attraction? Just undo the Velcro strip to release the leash until you're back at the car. To buy: Ruff Wear Quick Draw Leash, ruffwear.com. Travel Grooming Kit, $10 A trip to the lake is great―until Bowser gets covered in pond scum. This to-go toiletries kit includes an all-natural shampoo and conditioning rinse, as well as yummy peanut-butter treats for after the bath. To buy: Cloud Star Buddy Sampler Pack, pawnaturals.com.
Notepad, $15 for 8 When you leave your pets at home, list instructions for the sitter, from dietary details to contact info. Because these pads are magnetic, you can post them on the refrigerator, where the caretaker can't miss them. To buy:Unfortunately, this item is no longer available.
Carrier, $132 Your pint-size pet never has to leave your side. This carrier, with patent-leather straps, is stylish enough to pass for a purse, and it has a padded bottom and ventilation to let Princess ride comfortably. To buy:Unfortunately, this product is no longer available, but find similar products atkwigy-bo.com.
Travel Bed, $150 This bed for cats or small dogs buckles securely into a car. There's a zip-off dome top and a detachable padded shoulder strap for transporting a pet without disturbing a moment of her precious beauty sleep. To buy: Sleepypod, cheengoo.com.
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Pet Toys for Sleeping
It's your pet's mission to sleep at least 22 solid hours each day―and he's very dedicated. The least you can do is give him a cozy place to curl up.
Pocket Bed, $120 to $165 Make bedtime much better with a bed that has a pocket for Bailey to snuggle in. Matching throw pillows mean your dog's decor won't clash with yours. In two shapes and small and large sizes. To buy: Lexie Lew bed, csnstores.com.
Convertible House, $65 These cozy quarters give kitty some privacy, then flatten out into a pet-size daybed. One tester's Maine coon had a ball with the attached plush toy. To buy: Trixie + Peanut Sunshine Convertible Pet House, trixieandpeanut.com.
Recycled Nap Pad, $30 to $101 Let your dog or cat do her part to save the planet with a bed made from 85 percent recycled soda bottles. It's not only comfy and eco-chic but also machine washable. In sizes XS to XL. To buy: West Paw Design Eco Nap, westpawdesign.com.
Tent, $7 Cats will abandon the sofa and the laundry basket in favor of this fun tent, which is easily pitched in the great indoors. It folds flat to store and is such a steal that Simba, Tigger, and Sylvester can each have one of their own. To buy: Bästis cat and dog tent, ikea.com for stores.
Stain-Resistant Bed, $109 to $140 Unsightly (and smelly) accidents happen, but the special fabric of this pet bed resists stains, mold, and mildew and cleans up with a swipe of laundry soap and water. In two sizes. To buy: Michael Graves Pet Bed by Crypton Super Fabrics, cryptonfabric.com.
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Pet Toys: The Extras
What to get the cat or dog who has everything? Give them the little luxuries they truly deserve. After all, who's going to indulge them if you don't?
Nautical Raincoat, $66 When Fifi must go out in the rain, minimize postwalk puddles on the carpet and that wet-dog smell with a slicker that keeps pooches weighing 8 to 11 pounds looking cute and feeling dry. To buy:Unfortunately this product is no longer available.
Striped-Tie Leash, $42 Have a preppy pup? Try this leash inspired by the repp striped tie. Staffers liked the buckle on the handle that allows you to hook it around a pole when you have to dash inside a no-pet zone. To buy: Old School Repp Lead, mymascot.com.
Cat Bowls, $16 Each If you're as fussy about your cat's dinnerware as he is about his food, let him enjoy his kibble from thoroughly modern and dishwasher-safe bowls modeled on sardine and tuna cans from the 1900s. To buy: Gatto Grasso Bowl and Kitty Kitty Bang Bang Tuna Can Bowl, ossoandco.com.
Dog-Breed Tees, $25 Each She's proud to be a pug; let her flaunt her pedigree. These breed-specific tees are machine washable. And one tester liked how incredibly stretchy they are―so you won't have to struggle to get her highness's paws through the armholes. To buy: Identi-tees, 26barsandaband.com.
Pet Organizers, $20 Each Add your pet's medical records, grooming contacts, and other data to this organizer, prefilled with helpful info about where to find pet-friendly hotels. To buy:Unfortunately, The Complete Dog Organizer is no longer available, but find The Complete Cat Organizer atrsvp.com.
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