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The 7 Best Snuffle Mats for Your Dog

Veterinarians.org Team

By

Medically reviewed by

Ivana Crnec, DVM

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Best Snuffle Mats Summary

  • Best Overall Snuffle Mat: Paw 5 Dog Snuffle Mat for Dogs
    This interactive dog mat is the best overall as it helps to eliminate anxiety and reduce boredom.
  • Best Snuffle Mat For Stress Relief: AWOOF Snuffle Mat for Dogs
    Because of the one-of-a-kind build, this mat is just what your dog needs if they are often under stress.
  • Best Nosework Training Snuffle Mat: LIVEKEY Dog Snuffle Mat
    This mat is perfect for nosework training as it helps to bring out your dog’s foraging and hunting instincts.
  • Best Snuffle Mat For Slow Eating: PET ARENA Adjustable Snuffle Mat
    Thanks to a unique design, this mat helps your dog eat slowly through a foraging exercise.
  • Most Interactive Snuffle Mat: RundA Snuffle Mat for Dogs
    In addition to stress relief, this interactive mat is perfect for bringing out your dog’s foraging skills.
  • Most Easy To Use Snuffle Mat: IFOYO Dog Feeding Mat
    This easy-to-use mat helps your dog get a foraging experience just like they would in nature while searching for food.
  • Most Sensory Snuffle Mat: Vapara Snuffle Mat for Dogs
    With an interactive design, this mat provides a sensory experience for your dog to hunt for food.

What is a Snuffle Mat?

What is a Snuffle Mat

A snuffle mat is a special pet mat made with loose fabric and hiding places that create the perfect stimulation for your pet to find their treats, putting both their brain and their belly to work.

Snuffle mats are often made using high-quality, durable materials and are great dog puzzle toys. You can be sure that your pet dog will enjoy ‘hunting’ for dry food or treats thanks to the various hiding spots in the mat.

Plus, these mats are suitable for dogs of all sizes and come with different difficulty levels suitable for dogs with different foraging skills and personalities.

Why Do Dogs Need a Snuffle Mat?

Dogs need snuffle mats as they cater to their natural foraging instinct. These mats not only provide them with an opportunity to ‘hunt’ for food, but they also help slow down speedy eating.

Even if you don’t have a typical hunting breed, most dogs love to sniff out a tasty morsel, especially if it is hidden away in the crevices of these mats.

Your canine friend needs a snuffle mat for many reasons. It creates a platform for play, slow eating, and mental stimulation. Here is a closer look at the benefits of mats:

  • No Speedy Eating. Fast eating is associated with various health problems, from self-limiting indigestion to life-threatening bloating (also known as gastric dilatation-volvulus – GDV). The snuffle rug or mat supports slow feeding and promotes longer mealtime.
  • Mental Stimulation. A bored dog can succumb to nasty habits such as barking, digging, and chewing. The snuffle rug serves as an excellent brain challenge. It is in the dog’s DNA to hunt, and their sense of smell can enjoy a little challenge.
  • Affordable Dog Toy. Even if your dog is a slow eater and has other enrichment toys, you can still provide a snuffle rug for additional fun. Snuffle mats for dogs are affordable. Also, they are easy to make at home using simple household items.

Are Snuffle Mats Safe for Dogs?

Yes, snuffle mats are perfectly safe for dogs. However, one needs to ensure that the mats are kept clean and frequently washed to maintain hygiene.

It is also a good idea to frequently check the mat for loose and damaged parts. In case of damage, it is best to replace the snuffle rug with a new one.

The Best Snuffle Mats Reviewed

If your dog loves food hunting, eats too fast, or needs mental enrichment, you need a mat. To help you choose the right one, we have reviewed some of the best snuffle mats on Amazon.

Paw 5 Dog Snuffle Mat for Dogs

Paw 5 Dog Snuffle Mat for Dogs

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Summary: This mat is perfect for any breed and any size. It’s especially perfect for breeds like bulldogs who aren’t able to use traditional puzzle feeders because of the shape of their muzzle. Additionally, this mat makes mealtimes fun & stimulating, which in turn improves your dog’s mental health. The mat is 100% pet-safe and has been made after seven years of research. It also helps to reduce destructive behavior in dogs.

Pros

  • Keeps your dog calm & occupied
  • Can be used with dry food
  • Improves mental health
  • Reduces bloating & gulping
  • Machine washable

Cons

  • Could end up hiding insects and other pests

Review: This snuffle mat is perfect for your dog, thanks to its handmade design. It is fun & stimulating and keeps your dog from getting bored.

AWOOF Snuffle Mat for Dogs

AWOOF Snuffle Mat for Dogs

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Summary: This nosework feeding mat is perfect for dogs who are speedy eaters and gulp down their food. As a result, you can expect less bloating and a comfortable eating experience for them. This mat ensures that your dog’s feeding time increases to around 10 minutes which in turn reduces the scope of indigestion. It is made using materials that are pet-safe and feature a non-slip design.

Pros

  • Helps reduce stress
  • Encourages slow eating
  • Brings out natural foraging instinct
  • Non-slip design
  • Durable and easy to wash

Cons

  • Could get stuck in your dog’s paws

Review: This mat contains two layers of orange petals and a big green messy grass which make it easy to hide food. It helps your dog forage and slows down their feeding time.

LIVEKEY Dog Snuffle Mat

LIVEKEY Dog Snuffle Mat

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Summary: This particular snuffle mat stimulates your dog’s foraging instinct. As a result, it also enhances your pet’s smelling power. It can be combined with other mats to form one large playground. The mat is 17’’×17’’, which makes it easier to store away when not in use. It is made using dense and sturdy fleece that ensures durability. Additionally, it is also easier to wash, which ensures that hygiene is maintained.

Pros

  • Easy to clean
  • Made with durable material
  • Non-slip bottom
  • Can be used with other similar mats
  • Helps your dog eat slowly

Cons

  • Food could be difficult to find

Review: This mat is perfect for training your dog’s nose to search for food. It is made using premium quality materials, making it durable.

PET ARENA Adjustable Snuffle Mat

PET ARENA Adjustable Snuffle Mat

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Summary: This adjustable mat is not only portable but also great for smell training. You can hide small amounts of food in its crevices and watch your dog slowly get to each one of the treats. This mat is exactly what you need to cater to your pet’s sense of smell and foraging instincts. The mat is multi-purpose and can be used as a snuffle mat, feeding bowl, or a small storage bag. It is made using an eco-friendly, sustainable, and anti-pilling upgraded polar fleece material.

Pros

  • Easy to pack away when not required
  • Takes up less space
  • Easy to wash
  • Made with durable material
  • Trains your dog’s nose

Cons

  • Might trap dust and other harmful objects

Review: This mat is perfect for hiding small amounts of food to train your dog to eat slowly. It is easy to stow away when not in use.

RundA Snuffle Mat for Dogs

RundA Snuffle Mat for Dogs

Get it on Amazon

Summary: This mat is not only innovative but also highly interactive. It helps your dog learn how to forage and is made of premium quality materials that make it easy to wash. It is perfect for dogs of all sizes. The design of this mat keeps your dog occupied and helps to reduce destructive behavior. It features two suction cups that keep the mat stuck to the ground as your pup searches for hidden treats. The mat is high quality, non-toxic, durable, and odorless.

Pros

  • Great for small and large dogs
  • Easy to maintain
  • Can be stored away when not in use
  • Highly durable
  • Helps to train your dog easily

Cons

  • It can trap dirt and dust in its crevices

Review: This mat is made using strong materials and therefore will not tear easily. It works great with dogs of all sizes.

IFOYO Dog Feeding Mat

IFOYO Dog Feeding Mat

Get it on Amazon

Summary: This mat acts like a blanket and helps to train your dog’s already sensitive nose. You can hide treats in various areas and help your dog indulge in foraging activities. This helps to relieve stress. The mat is available in a variety of design options and helps to train your dog’s smell and brain. It is durable, easy to clean, and portable. Just throw it into a washing machine to ensure a clean play area for your pup.

Pros

  • Helps release stress
  • Non-slip design
  • Bright and attractive colors
  • Available in a variety of variations
  • Easy to store away when not in use

Cons

  • Could be difficult to wash

Review: This snuffle mat is a perfect gift for pet parents. It helps your dog learn to eat slowly and thus improves their digestion and prevents bloating.

Vapara Snuffle Mat for Dogs

Vapara Snuffle Mat for Dogs

Get it on Amazon

Summary: This interactive mat is perfect for dogs, large and small. It can hide a bunch of treats and therefore keep your pet engaged for a while. It helps in the development of your pet’s brain and improves their intelligence. The mat can be washed in a washing machine and does not deform easily. It is made using durable and pet-safe materials that stimulate your pet’s foraging instinct. It has a non-slip surface at the bottom that ensures safety during aggressive play from your dog.

Pros

  • Great for mental health
  • Relieves stress
  • Easy to store
  • Highly portable
  • Non-slip design

Cons

  • Likely to trap debris

Review: This snuffle mat is not only interactive but also a great tool to keep your dog engaged in foraging for treats.

What is the Best Snuffle Mat?

Paw 5 Dog Snuffle Mat for Dogs is our top pick as the best mat for dogs. This brand checks off all the boxes for making its mat the perfect snuffle mat for dogs. The mat is sustainably made, easy to use, machine washable, and perfect for engaging your dog’s sense of smell and brain.

The mat slows down mealtime and will make your dog ‘hunt’ for its food. It is perfect for all breeds, from lazy French Bulldogs to curious German Shepherds.

Best Seller
Paw 5 Dog Snuffle Mat for Dogs
9.5/10Our Score
  • Paw 5 snuffle mat for dogs will keep your puppy calm & occupied, fulfilling your dog's natural desire to sniff..
  • Ideal for all-sized dogs, Paw 5 dog enrichment toys make mealtimes fun & stimulating. Promoting slower eating, reducing bloating & gulping..
  • Keep your dog occupied & entertained for hours when left alone, by reinforcing good behavior & replacing anxiety with a long-lasting treat.

How do I Choose a Snuffle Mat?

There are a few factors that need to be kept in mind when looking for snuffle mats:

  • Innovative Design. If the mat features an innovative design, then you can expect it to be a hit with your dog. This will keep them busy for longer periods and prevent gulping down food.
  • Materials. The top of the mat should be made from a washable yet durable material that can withstand the efforts of an aggressive chewer. The bottom should be an anti-slip rubber mat.
  • Easy Maintenance. The snuffle mat should be easy to wash as you can expect to be covered in your dog’s drool. This is especially true if you hide treats in the mat.
  • Affordability. The mat needs to be affordable as frequent biting and scratching could damage it. Therefore, it should be cheap.
  • Durability. Since you can expect the mat to endure a lot of scratching and biting, it should be durable enough to handle it all.

How do You Introduce a Snuffle Mat?

Using a snuffle dog mat is simple.

For most designs, all you need to do is scatter your pup’s favorite kibble onto the rug and let them do the rest.

Some more intricate designs will require a bit more effort to hide the food in every nook and pocket.

To discourage chewing or excessive licking, make sure you are nearby when your pet is foraging for their meal.

Remove the snuffle mat as soon as they are finished. A destructive pet who is prone to chewing could loosen material strips, which can be a choking hazard.

Observe your puppy while they use the snuffle mat and discourage any chewing.

Can Snuffle Mats be Washed?

Yes, the shuffle mat can be washed.

However, it is not necessary to wash the mat after every single use. Following meals, give the rug a shake outside to loosen any undiscovered morsels.

After several uses, you can wash the mat. For a washable snuffle mat, you can throw it straight into your washing machine or into a pillowcase and then into the washer.

Wash your dog’s feeding mat at least once every two weeks or more regularly if you have a heavy drooler.

How do You Make a Snuffle Mat?

How do You Make a Snuffle Mat

When it comes to making a DIY snuffle mat, you can choose something with a difficulty level that you have the energy or desire to take on.

You can create a complicated puzzle that will put your Jack Russel Terrier’s foraging tactics to the test. But if you think that your lazy Pug will lose interest, then sticking to a simple grass-like design will be better.

You need to decide what will work for your dog’s personality (and your skillset or schedule).

Beginner-level DIY Snuffle Mats.

Snuffle mat DIY materials include a rubber sink mat and some fleece strips.

Once you’ve spent some time firmly securing the fabric strips with some knots, your snuffle mat is ready for its first scattering of kibble.

Similar designs are straightforward, popular, and easy to make. Your dog will enjoy sniffing around until the last morsel.

Expert-level DIY Snuffle Mats:

Make a second rug for some variety, or try your hand at a snuffle rug that has a few additional hiding places.

Most rug design includes extra flaps and shapes that will encourage your dog’s wet little nose to explore every inch of their fun rug.

Hiding their food will require a bit of effort, but if you’re willing to sew a snuffle mat for your pooch, then hiding their dog treats will be an extension of that labor of love.

Make sure your DIY rug is easily washable and that the strips of fabric are incredibly secure.

Is a Snuffle Mat Worth it?

Yes, snuffle mats are worth it.

Pet snuffle mats helps control the fast gulping of dog food which can otherwise be harmful. They are something between dog toys and dog bowls that cater to your dog’s natural foraging skills. Simply put, the snuffle mat is a slow feeder and an enrichment toy in one.

Furthermore, these mats feature a universal design which makes them perfect for both small and large dogs. Therefore, it is easy to conclude that these mats are worth the investment.