When shopping for new toy balls for your dog, you want to find the best dog balls on the market to ensure your pup has a safe toy to play with that he or she will enjoy. This article will offer advice for selecting the ball most appropriate for your dog.
If you’re in a hurry and want to know our recommendation. In our opinion, the Jolly Pets Soccer Ball is the pick of the 7 we reviewed.
Toy Ball Shopping Tips
How to choose the best toy balls for your dog
When selecting the right toy ball for your dog, the following should be the main things to consider:
Your dog’s size.
It is crucial to your dog’s safety that you purchase a ball that is the right size. The correct size is determined by the size of your dog’s mouth; the ball should not be small enough to swallow, but not so big that your dog cannot get it in his or her mouth. According to the American Kennel Club (AKC), if a ball is too small, it poses a choking hazard. If a ball is too big, your dog will struggle to or be unable to pick it up to play with it, which will likely result in a loss of interest in the toy.
Your dog’s current and past favorite toys.
Consider the qualities of the toys that your dog treasured in the past and seek these qualities during your search for a new toy. Your dog might be drawn to a loud squeaker, a certain texture, a certain material, a certain shape or a certain color.
Your dog’s play habits.
If your dog enjoys playing catch, a softer rubber ball is ideal because it is easier to quickly grip in their mouth and to prevent injury if the ball hits your dog before he or she is able to catch it.
If your dog likes to fetch and is rough with toys, a thicker rubber ball is ideal because the ball will sustain more damage rolling across or bumping against rough surfaces during a game of fetch.
If your dog enjoys playing outside with toys, you will want a ball with a texture that is easy to clean.
If your dog makes toys very slobbery during playtime, you’ll ideally want a ball that is spiked to handle the minimal amount of slobber. Spikes make a lower level for slobber to drip from and means you won’t necessarily have to touch it. Another feature ideal for slobbery dogs is a textured ball so that both you and your dog can still grab the ball during playtime as it becomes slippery.
Your dog’s chewing habits.
Rubber balls are not designed to be chewable toys and there is no such thing as an indestructible dog toy. If your dog is a heavy chewer, know that most rubber balls will not survive for long if your dog is allowed to continually chew them. Below is a video that owners of heavy chewers will find helpful.
What’s the best way to use balls with your dog?
Keep in mind that rubber balls are meant for interactive play with dogs, for games such as fetch or catch.
These games are best played outdoors, or in an inside area without fragile items present and room for your dog to run. Playing interactive games such as fetch or catch with a ball is a great way for your dog to burn energy and a good bonding opportunity for you and your dog.
Use caution when playing these games with multiple dogs; some dogs do not like sharing toys, which is referred to as “resource guarding” by the American Kennel Club (AKC). Dogs who resource guard toys may become aggressive towards other dogs who try to take their favorite toy.
Balls should be a part of your playtime with your dog, then taken away and stored away out of your dog’s sight and reach when playtime is over. To make removing the ball easier, train your dog the “drop it” command, rewarding with a treat, another toy, affection, or whatever he or she best responds to.
According to the American Kennel Club (AKC), Rubber ball toys are not a toy that a dog should be allowed to focus on chewing on unless they are actively supervised. Even if a dog is actively supervised as they chew on a rubber ball, owners should not expect a rubber ball to survive many intense chewing sessions.
Rubber ball toys are not the right toy to leave your dog unsupervised with; if your dog is able to chew up the toy, they are likely to ingest pieces of rubber and the squeaker. This poses the risk of a choking hazard or an intestinal blockage, which can be life-threatening or painful, as well as expensive to treat.
Now that you know what to look for and how to pick out the best dog ball, here are seven to consider:
- Chuckit! Sport Ball
- EASTBLUE Rubber Puppy Chew Ball
- Jolly Pets Soccer Ball
- Hyper Pet Tennis Balls For Dogs
- Jolly Pets Tug-N-Toss Dog Toy Ball
- Gnawsome Spiky Squeaker Ball Dog Toy
- Nerf Dog Squeak Ball
Chuckit! Sport Ball
The Chuckit! Sport Ball is popular among parents of heavy chewing pups.
- Many customers reported that this sport ball was very durable and stood up well to chewing.
- The sport ball is easy to clean.
- The bright color makes the sport ball easy to locate when playing outdoors.
- The sport ball floats, ideal for dogs who enjoy playing in water.
- A ball throwing tool called the Chuckit! launcher is available, allowing owners to pick up the ball and throw it again without using their hands, ideal for playing with slobbery dogs or for owners who may not be able to bend down to reach the ball on the ground.
- If the sport ball sustains any size tear or hole, even a minor one, it will sink in water.
- The canine customers who were able to chew up the sport ball were able to pull off a large round piece which would pose a choking hazard.
- Customers reported that the bright orange color fades quickly, even if the sport ball was left outside only for a day. The resulting pale orange color makes the ball harder to find during playtime.
EASTBLUE Rubber Puppy Chew Ball
The EASTBLUE Rubber Puppy Chew Ball is a durable ball that is ideal for keeping pups on their toes.
- Due to the shape of this chew ball, it is difficult for dogs to predict where it will land and it bounces multiple times before most dogs are able to catch it, which helps make playtime more interesting and mentally stimulating.
- Customers report that the ball is easy to throw over long distances.
- The squeaker is loud, ideal for getting a dog’s attention.
- Many customers reported that even after their dog chewed up the ball, they still enjoyed playing with it.
- The chew ball is only available in one size, limiting what size dogs may safely play with it.
- Some customers reported that either their dogs could not get the chew ball to squeak at all, or that the squeaker fell out or stopped squeaking after a relatively short period of time.
- Many canine customers gnawed the ends off and as a result, their owners discovered the ends were glued on. Further, the ends sometimes came off in large enough pieces to be a choking hazard.
Jolly Pets Soccer Ball
The Jolly Pets Soccer Ball is ideal for dogs who enjoy playing fetch and chewing.
- Customers reported that even after their dogs bite the soccer ball hard, leaving teeth marks and causing the ball to change shape, the ball bounces back to its original round shape and doesn’t deflate.
- The soccer ball is scented, which helps reduce bad odors from accumulating. Several customers reported that the scent lasted over a long period of time.
- The large size of this ball is about the size of a human soccer ball and brightly colored, making it easy to locate when playing outside.
- Despite the large size being as big as a human soccer ball, dogs are still able to grasp and carry the ball in their mouths because it is hollow and bends to accommodate their mouths.
- The ball is sensitive to temperatures, becoming more pliable for dogs to chew on in the summertime and less pliable in the wintertime. Depending on a customer’s climate, this could negatively impact their dog’s playtime with the ball.
- Some customers reported that their dogs got their teeth stuck in the ball and needed assistance getting the ball off of their teeth.
- Some customers reported physical differences in the different color variations of this ball, for example, some of the colors were a harder consistency than the others.
Hyper Pet Tennis Balls For Dogs
The Hyper Pet Tennis Balls For Dogs is ideal for dogs who enjoy playing fetch and are light chewers.
- The Hyper Pet Tennis Balls are available in three sizes: mini, regular and large, allowing dogs a variety of sizes to enjoy playing with them safely.
- The Hyper Pet Tennis Balls are available in a variety of bright colors, ideal for helping owners locate the balls quickly with a color that will catch their attention.
- The Hyper Pet Tennis balls are compatible with the Hyper Pet K9 Kannon K2 Ball Launcher, which allows owners to shoot the ball as far as possible for their dogs to fetch. Playtime can become more mentally stimulating by shooting multiple balls as your dog runs, making him or her choose which ball to go after first.
- Some customers reported that these balls did not bounce well, making playtime less enjoyable for their dogs.
- These balls are ideal for light to moderate chewers, which are not very common. Several customers reported that their dogs enjoyed pulling the fuzzy exterior off of the Hyper Pet Tennis Balls, which means they will not last very long if a heavy chewer is not constantly supervised when playing with them.
- Some customers reported that the Hyper Pet tennis balls are not any more durable than human tennis balls, which was unexpected.
Jolly Pets Tug-N-Toss Dog Toy Ball
The Jolly Pets Tug-N-Toss Dog Toy Ball is perfect for outdoor play with large dogs.
- This is a substantially thick rubber ball, making it most ideal for larger breeds of dogs.
- The Jolly Pets ball is very bouncy and floats in water unless punctured.
- Multiple customers have reported that the ball is durable and withstands tough play with their dogs, resulting in the ball being a toy that was able to be played with for years.
- The Jolly Pets ball has a handle that sets it apart from other balls because the handle makes the ball easier for dogs to carry. Further, the handle causes the ball to bounce in ways that are difficult for dogs to anticipate, making playtime more interesting.
- Due to its weight, dogs that suffer from arthritis or joint issues may find this ball might be a little too heavy for them to carry without straining.
- While the handle is necessary due to the thickness of the rubber, if a dog’s lower jaw is a certain size, there is a potential for their jaw to become stuck in the handle, which could cause injury.
- Several customers stated that the handle was targeted by their dogs who are heavy chewers and it was chewed off quickly. This poses a choking hazard.
Gnawsome Spiky Squeaker Ball Dog Toy
The Gnawsome Spiky Squeaker Ball Dog Toy is the perfect ball for a game of fetch.
- The Gnawsome ball is made of pliable rubber and it is hollow, making it great for playing catch because it would not injure a dog if the ball hit them before they were able to catch it.
- The spiky surface of the ball has two benefits: one, it massages a dog’s gums while they chew it, and two, it also helps reduce the amount of slobber owners must touch when picking up the ball because the slobber goes down around the spikes instead of coating the entire exterior of the ball.
- The Gnawsome ball has a loud squeaker, perfect for getting a dog’s attention quickly.
- The Gnawsome ball is easy to clean; customers report that rinsing it with water removes debris effectively.
- The Gnawsome ball is only available in one size, limiting what dogs are able to play with it.
- It’s made from very pliable rubber, making it easy to chew apart quickly.
- This ball cannot be an exclusively outside toy. Customers reported that when left outside, the exposure to varying temperatures quickly takes a toll; spikes fall off the ball as a result of exposure to heat.
Nerf Dog Squeak Ball
The Nerf Dog Squeak Ball is made for powerful chewers and outdoor play.
- The Nerf ball is made from a durable rubber that some customers have described as similar to a basketball, making it ideal for more powerful chewers, for outdoor play, and for dogs that are rough on toys.
- The Nerf ball was made for outdoor playtime; the rubber is weather and water-resistant. Customers have reported that their dogs have played with this ball outdoors and it has held up well to weather and floats in water.
- The texture of the Nerf ball makes it easier for dogs and humans to grip, even when it becomes slobbery during play.
- The manufacturer tests the balls extensively before releasing them to the public.
- Several customers reported that the ball stopped squeaking after a minimal amount of playtime.
- Multiple canine customers were able to remove the squeaker and large pieces of rubber promptly, causing their owners to be concerned about the potential of choking or intestinal blockage.
- Several customers reported when purchasing replacement balls, they found the manufacturer quality to be inferior to previous purchases.
After reading the reviews above and considering your dog’s preferences and needs, you still might not be sure which ball to order for your dog. Considering the needs of the average dog in a toy ball:
- Durability, a toy that can withstand lots of chewing
- Is soft enough to easily fetch
- Strong enough to endure play on a variety of terrain
We believe the Jolly Pets Soccer Ball is the best choice. While all the balls mentioned have their own strengths, the Jolly Pets Soccer Ball fulfills a variety of needs in one ball, rather than specifically catering to only a subset of requirements. Check out the video below to see what we mean, or click here to buy on Amazon.