Best heartbeat toy for a puppy to help them settle

Soothing sounds to calm and comfort your precious pup.

Best heartbeat toy

by Amy-Mae Turner |
Published on

The best heartbeat toy for a puppy is a special kind of puppy toy that can make all the difference when you're introducing a nervous young dog to your home - and taking them away from their mum and litter mates. Heartbeat toys can greatly help with that transition, giving them a soft, cuddly buddy that emits a soothing and comforting heartbeat to reassure them as they get used to being alone.

Heartbeat toys for puppies can also help with crate training, so your doggo doesn't feel so alone, and may assist you in getting your puppy to sleep at night as the heartbeat creates a calming, rhythmic sleep environment.

Best heartbeat toys for puppies at a glance:

Best overall: Snuggle Puppy Heartbeat Stuffed Toy for Dogs - View on Amazon UK
Best pillow-style: ALL FOR PAWS Little Buddy Heartbeat Bone - View on Amazon UK
Best bed mat-style: WEOK Heartbeat Puppy Toy with Heat Pack for Pets - View on Amazon UK

Heartbeat toys aren't just for pups - older dogs can benefit from them too if they are very anxious or struggling with anxiety separation. Such toys are typically available as plushies in various animal varieties, but we've also looked at a pillow-style version, and a bed mat for your pup to lie on. See which one would best suit your pupper in the selection below.

Best heartbeat toy for a puppy

Best overall

Snuggle Puppy heartbeat toySnuggle Puppy/Amazon
Price: $39.95
Alternative retailers
Target$31.99View offer
Walmart$39.95View offer
Tractor Supply$39.95View offer

Snuggle Puppy has been producing heartbeat toys for puppies for over two decades, and claims to have helped over a million poor pooches. Their current toy could help yours with its friendly dog-shape, 'Real-Feel' pulsing heartbeat simulator, and heat pack. The simulator has two modes; 24/7 continuous, and eight hours with auto-off - ideal to soothe your dog through the night. The toy itself is made from certified safe materials and can go through the wash.

Customer review: "Brilliant. My sweet little cavapoo puppy absolutely loves this teddy. It has really helped him settle since I brought him home. He literally cannot sleep without it. Highly recommend for anyone worried about how their new puppy will cope on their first night in a new home. With this by their side they will be just fine."

Pros

  • Auto-off mode
  • Batteries included

Cons

  • Heat pack is disposable

Best budget heartbeat toy

ALL FOR PAWS heartbeat toy ALL FOR PAWS/Amazon
Price: $20.99

While we get told to count sheep to help us fall asleep, your pup can lay with a lamb. This sweet snoozing toy offers a heart-shaped heartbeat simulator that beats like a real heart to comfort your baby dog. It's 38cm long, so suitable for all breeds and has a super-soft fleecy fur and soft cotton padding. The heartbeat simulator is powered by three AG13 batteries which are a very affordable option. With the simulator removed, this toy can go through the wash.

Customer review: "Our puppy absolutely loves his heart beating sheep! We took him home yesterday (he is just over eight weeks old) and this has been the perfect transition to help him separate from his mum."

Pros

  • Premium plush fabric
  • Machine washable

Cons

  • No heat pack

Best with heartbeat toy with heat pack

Pets Know Best heartbeat toy Pets Know Best/Amazon
Price: $29.94

This HuggiePup option uses the combination of warmth and a pulsing heartbeat to comfort your little pooch. The rectangular heartbeat simulator is powered by two AAA batteries and offers different modes. If you press the heart-shaped power button once it will stay on for four hours, or press and hold for three seconds and you'll get eight hours of soothing beats. We like this toy's heat pack - it's reusable and needs to be microwaved for just a minute to warm up. This toy is machine washable.

Customer review: "The HuggiePup has been a game-changer for crate training our new puppy. This cuddly behavioural aid toy is not just adorable but incredibly effective. The pulsing heartbeat feature is genius. It mimics the comforting sound of a mother's heartbeat, instantly calming our puppy during crate time. It's made a significant difference in reducing anxiety and helping our puppy adjust to his crate. The added heating pack is a nice touch. It provides a gentle warmth, creating a cosy environment that makes the crate feel like a safe haven, and our puppy took to it immediately."

Pros

  • Reusable, microwaveable heat pack
  • Four and eight hour modes

Cons

  • Batteries not included

Best pillow-style heartbeat toy

ALL FOR PAWS heartbeat pillowALL FOR PAWS/Amazon

A strong alternative to a heartbeat toy is a pillow-shaped option, especially if your puppy is already bonded to a particular plushie. This bone-shaped pillow can go in your dog's basket, bed, or crate to emit a steady stream of soothing beats. This pillow's heartbeat simulator is powered by two AA batteries with a simple on/off button. This lightweight cushion measures in at 30cm by 19cm.

Customer review: "Very sturdy (for a daschund) heartbeat a little loud but have put heart in a thick sock to help. Hunny loves it. Lets see how tonight goes."

Pros

  • Strong alternative to a toy
  • Simple to operate

Cons

  • Some reviewers say the heartbeat is too loud

Best for large pups

Woek large heartbeat toyWoek/Amazon

We like WEOK's heartbeat dog toy for its generous dimensions. It measures 57cm long, so is suitable for larger dogs, or even to comfort a litter of smaller pups. This is a soft, fluffy, stuffed plush with a Velcro closure compartment for the heartbeat simulator to be hidden away in. This offers eight hours of operation with a press of the power button. It also has tap-to-activate functionality, so if your pup is particularly smart they can learn to turn it back on with a nudge or tap of their paw.

Customer review: "Spent the first few days at home without this for our eight week old puppy and she struggled settling in her crate. With this toy she no longer cries at all when she's in her crate and has resulted in less toilet accidents over night as well. Honestly has worked wonders, 100% recommend for a new puppy when crate training."

Pros

  • Long length
  • Tap-to-activate functionality

Cons

  • Supplied vacuum-packed

Best for small breeds

Beeztees heartbeat toy Beeztees/Amazon

Beeztees 'Snoet' is a rabbit-shaped plushie toy with a friendly face and a fluffy belly. This is a more compact solution than other options we're highlighting, measuring in at 25cm long and slimline at 7.5cm. This makes this bunny a good choice for smaller breeds who might be nervous of larger toys. The Beeztees heartbeat simulator is sold separately and offers ten-minute bursts of heartbeat sounds from each press of the power button.

Pros

  • Slimline design
  • Fluffy detail

Cons

  • Simulator sold separately

Best bed mat-style heartbeat 'toy'

Woek heartbeat blanketWoek/Amazon
Price: $30.99

Another WEOK option, this is a substantial 'toy' that actually works well as a bed mat to go in your puppy's basket or crate, or if you allow such shenanigans, be placed on an armchair or sofa. Your puppy can lie on the soft, padded body of the elephant, rest up against the elephant's head and enjoy the soothing heartbeat sounds it will emit. This measures approximately 45cm long and has the added bonus of squeakers in the paws for some fun sonics.

Customer review: "From day one we had this plush in the car seat on the way home, it definitely helped to settle her. She had it on her first night too and she only cried to go for a wee! She takes this plush everywhere, out of all of her toys this one is her absolute favourite! The best puppy purchase I've made!"

Pros

  • Large size
  • Squeaky paws

Cons

  • Cushion insert is not machine washable

Do heartbeat toys for puppies actually work?

It all depends. Some puppies find massive comfort in such a toy, and there are thousands of product reviews online from grateful owners to back this up. However, particularly nervous pups might find a heartbeat toy frightening. As with all puppy toys, it's best to introduce a heartbeat toy gradually so your dog can get used to it. Heartbeat toys are never suitable for aggressive chewers who could wreck the toy and gain access to the simulator and/or heat pack.

Are heartbeat toys machine washable?

All of the heartbeat toys we're featuring are machine washable - once you've removed the heartbeat simulator and any heat packs, of course. They can go in the machine on a standard gentle wash.

Are the heartbeat simulators replaceable?

Yes, there are a wide variety of replacements available online and from pet shops. Just check the measurements to ensure they are the same as the one you're replacing so you know what kind will fit inside your toy. Replacement heat packs are also readily available.

Is it safe to leave my puppy alone with a heartbeat toy?

It's not ideal. Manufacturers recommend supervising your pup when they have their heartbeat toy. Only leave them alone with it if you are absolutely certain they won't chew it, as this could mean they get access to the simulator and/or heat pack inside.

What else can help a nervous puppy settle in?

An anti-anxiety bed - whether it's going to be used in a crate, or just on the floor, consider a hooded bed that feels like a cosy cave, a soft doughnut bed they can sink into, or a bed with high sides so they feel protected as they snooze.

A pet-calming plug-in - these work like plug-in air fresheners and emit calming pheromones similar to those their mother would release to reassure her litter.

Teething toys - while such toys are designed to relief the pain of teething, a chew toy can also help with anxiety, satisfying your pup's natural biting instincts.

Interactive puppy toys - super-nervous puppies may not have the confidence for all kinds of interactive toy, but if you can get your pet engaged, it can take their mind off their worries.

Amy-Mae Turner is a Commerce Content Writer for Modern Gardens, Yours, Take A Break Pets, and A Modern Kitchen. When she's not pottering in the garden or mucking around in the kitchen, she can be found having doggy cuddles with her two beloved cockapoochis.

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