We used to have a cat named Reuben. He was my wife’s cat since right after college, and he lived almost 20 years. His favorite toy was a little Buzz Lightyear doll. He carry it around and cuddled with it. At some point during one of my wife’s many moves around the country in her 20s Buzz Lightyear was unfortunately lost. Reuben never loved another toy as much ever again… But ever since she told be about that toy we’ve referred to other animals’ favorite toys as “their Buzz Lightyear.”
Our oldest cat now is Whitney. Her “Buzz Lightyear” was a blue fake feather boa on a stick cat toy. She would nap with it and spend long periods of time grooming it. Eventually it got too ratty and gross and we had to throw it out. We’ve never been able to find another cat toy like that one that’s exactly the same and she never liked any of the replacements.
The two kittens we have now, their “Buzz Lightyear” so far appears to be an old cut hair tie that’s frayed on the ends. Of all the toys and other things they play with, that’s the one they walk around with and “hide” in their food and water. At least that one’s easy to replace.
Our first cat grabbed a small stuffed bear off our first Christmas tree. She carried that everywhere, slept with it, etc. Then our housekeeper in Portugal threw it away for reasons unknown. Every once in awhile, the cat would grab another low-hanging stuffed ornament, but Teddy was always her first love.
Our present master has a red stuffed mouse with a bell inside. She plays with it on occasion, tossing it into the air like cats do when they catch a real mouse. And after being banished from the bedroom during the night, she’ll bring it to the door as an offering whilst yowling. She also likes to play with scrunchies and likes to bat a chestnut around the house.
This. We hang the little teddy bear high up on the tree, and the cat jumps up and grabs it, never disturbing anything else on the tree. Then she carries it around the house like it’s her kitten. She’s not interested in any other ornament, even the stuffed ones.
Other than that, she loves anything with catnip in it.
I had two dogs (one’s with the ex, the other put down a few months back). One never had any real interest in toys. There was only one she ever really played with, but when the other dog would take it, she really wouldn’t put up a fight. Incidentally, not playing with toys is probably why she had so many teeth pulled over the years.
The other dog, however, loved toys. I’d get home from work and it looked like a couple of four year olds were playing all day. Dragging all the toys out and not putting anything away.
In any case, she did have one favorite toy, from the time she was little, it was a specific squeaky toy. In fact, she loved it so much that we usually had 3 or 4 of them at a time since she’d break them after a while so we’d buy them when we saw them. At one point when she was still little, she learned how to hold it in her mouth just right so it would drag on the carpet and chirp.
I haven’t had either dog on my house in probably 2 or 3 years and I’m still find those toys once in a while.
We have quite a few bell balls around. They lose them, we buy more, we find them. So we have about 20. But one lost its bell. This bell-less ball is one of our cats favorite. He carries it around the house. He hides it in my shoes (so the other cats can’t find it) when he’s not playing with it. His greatest joy is me finding it after it’s been lost a while.
Bessie, our Texas-sized chocolate Labrador, was very attached to a stuffed hedgehog toy and carried it with her everywhere. Sometimes she shook it vigorously (to discipline it when it misbehaved?) but otherwise was gentle with it. As she grew into adulthood, we got her a larger-sized stuffed hedgehog and kept it in an upstairs closet, planning to give it to her for Xmas. Somehow she sneaked upstairs before the holidays, got into the closet and came back down proudly holding her new hedgehog (we let her keep it).
Our current canine, Pluto the field spaniel will rip any soft toy to shreds. Of his hard toys, he prefers the imitation deer antler.
It has a sounder inside that is supposed to be like a pig grunting, but actually sounds a bit more like a duck call. She’s pretty obsessed with it - I only have to whisper “where’s Kevin?” and she will run off and come back with it. Sometimes she will just sit and look at it for minutes at a time, then suddenly pounce on it, or bash it with a paw to make it oink.
I haven’t told her but the current Kevin is actually Kevin VI - after a couple of months of chewing and play, she tends to destroy them so I have replaced it in the middle of the night 5 times
Iggy has a Jolly ball, (actually a horse toy). He’s played with it so hard the handle came off. Our equines also have a Jolly Ball, which they play with out in the pasture while Iggy looks on. You can he thinks they’ve got something that belongs to him!
Most anything stick-shaped. You know those popular cat toys with the soft little mouse or brightly-colored features, dangling from a long handle? Yeah, he doesn’t give a shit about the catnip mouse - he likes the stick. I drag one end of it against the floor or wall and he goes ape-shit. His favorite toy ever was literally garbage - the hollow plastic stick from one of those novelty huge suckers. He’s get so obsessed with that thing he wouldn’t eat. And he’s obsessed with food, too!
Although when I’m not really involved, he plays with a little cat nip toy kiwi he really seems to like.
Over the last few weeks of working from home, we’ve developed a couple of fun games with our hounds. Loki loves kick-fetch. We have a couple of dog toy balls that are the size of soccerballs, deflation proof, that I kick and he chases and brings back to “home base”. I alternate which ball I kick which keeps the game going for a while and really wears him out.
For Freyja I tied about 8 feet of cotton kitchen twine to a stuffed squirrel and spin it around my head in the yard. She loves trying to jump to catch it. That wears her out. Yesterday I decided I would call that game “Swirl-a-squirrel”. LOL!
We have a ton of dog toys. Current favorite is Kali’s stuffed lobster. Prior to the lobster, there was a stuffed Olympic torch that was hilarious. Seeing a dog running proudly, holding an Olympic torch high in the air, is too goofy.
There are two favourite toy options in Dylan the Maltese’s world.
The big red rugby ball (well, big to him). He likes it because it’s squishy, so fits into his tiny mouth. He’ll chase it once then not give it back, carrying it for the rest of his walk.
Mr Lion, aka Mr LoverLover, a large stuffed toy we won at a fair. It’s bigger than him and it was love at first sight. It’s kept on a shelf just in his reach, from where he drags it down, hauls it to his bed, spins it round a few times to get a good purchase and then gives it a good seeing to. Generally when we have guests.
I can’t think of any dog we’ve had that had a favorite toy, mostly they preferred tearing up anything new. We did have a cat that kept a dead mouse outside for a long time. Not sure exactly when he got it, but it got buried in the snow and he was ecstatic finding it in the spring. We had to keep a close eye on him to make sure that remained an outdoor toy.
Both Hermes and Hestia, our cats, like the Laser Pointer, and playing with the plastic things around bottle tops, and twist ties.
Hermes loves Mylar Balloons. He’s never broken one yet. He’ll take the string in his mouth and carry them all over the house. It’s not unusual to go to the bathroom during the middle of the night and find the balloon in there. When it loses enough helium, he jumps on it, but not with his claws out.
Recently we got him a collection of wind-up toys. He likes to hide from these and pounce on them as they go by. He’ll pick one up in his mouth and bring it over to you to wind up.
Yesterday my wife, Pepper Mill, made up cardboard insects and lizards and taped them high up on the walls (being in quarantine will make people do things like that). She made them specifically to tease the cars. They were only mildly interested.
Luca, the boxer/mastiff mix doesn’t really care about toys. Romeo, the boxer LOVES his Mr. Monkey. It’s a stuffed monkey that makes a monkey noise when he bites it or throws it around. When he first got it, he carried it around like it was his baby and whined - he also would whine when it made the monkey noise - I think he thought he had to take care of it. Now he pounces on it and shakes it around like crazy. He’s never tried to tear it up though. We bought Luca a duck (we call it Duck-Duck) that makes a quacking sound when used. He never really cared about it. Romeo likes that one too, but not as much as his Mr. Monkey.
They have a whole basket full of toys. Once in awhile one of them will dig around and pull something out and make a big production in front of the other dog with it. But within a few minutes its over.