Illustration for article titled Don't Let Your Dog Play With Tennis BallsPhoto: Kwiatek7 (Shutterstock)

There is nothing like seeing the joy on the face of a dog furiously chasing a bouncing tennis ball. Unfortunately, your puppy’s favorite toys can be harmful to their health. Here’s why you should replace those tennis balls with something safer – and how you can make smarter choices for your dog’s toys.

Tennis balls are for people

The greatest risk of giving your dog a tennis ball, loud Animal Dental Care & Oral Surgery The one thing about Colorado Springs is that they don’t last long enough to be chewed – and if your dog ingests them, chances are parts of the tennis ball structure and surrounding fluff will cause an intestinal blockage. This, of course, is the problem with any inedible chew toy you give your dog, but the chemical makeup on tennis balls can be particularly toxic.

My own Chihuahuas loved tugging tennis ball lint with their teeth. She often struggled to get it out of her gums, which was kind of fun (although of course I made sure to help her before she swallowed it) but I never knew the risks. Chewing on tennis balls can cause enamel abrasion and create a choking hazard even before the tiny pieces of rubber get into the animal’s intestines. “It is [likely] that a tennis ball contains lead along with a myriad of other toxic materials, ”notes Animal Dental Care. While a tennis ball acts like a traditional dog toy, there are healthier alternatives.

Illustration for article titled Don't Let Your Dog Play With Tennis Balls

How to choose a safe chew toy

Choosing a chew toy that your dog will actually play with can be tricky. Knowing about your dog – and a lot of trial and error – is key to finding the right toy, but there are a few things to consider before you start shopping. The preventive vet has a short circuit Checklist to help you choose safe toys to try out.

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  • Hardness: The toy should give a little, as toys that are too hard can injure your dog’s teeth.
  • Softness and Durability: On the other hand, toys shouldn’t be too soft. These toys can be torn apart and lint or smaller pieces in them can be eaten, creating a risk of suffocation. (That’s why you should Never give a dog a stuffed animal for a human to play with.)
  • Coating: Watch out for toys with flavors that could upset your dog’s stomach. The preventive vet notes that pig ears often have coatings that may not match your dog’s digestive system.
  • Size and shape: If the toy is too small, the dog can choke. Too big, and they can leave it in their mouth – so keep your dog’s mouth and head sizes in mind as you browse.
  • Washability: The items should be washable so that regular disinfection does not damage the toy (and increase the likelihood that your dog will ingest some of them).
  • Entertainment value: Don’t forget to think about how much fun your dog will have if he makes the effort to play with it.

Illustration for article titled Don't Let Your Dog Play With Tennis Balls

Monitor your dog’s behavior after playing

Once you have a few safe options, it’s time for the fun part – playing with your pup. Dog walking area Doggy Strides says to monitor your dog’s reaction to the new toys. Make sure they are safely enjoying the toy and not ripping out the filling or eating the debris. Examine your dog’s dental health and look for the color of the gums, any lumps that have developed, signs of broken / chipped teeth, and areas that appear / look painful Vets now. Finally, make sure they are having fun. If your dog seems disinterested, this is probably not the toy for him.

Consider whether your dog likes to tear up toys, eat toys, or chew for hours. If your dog likes to eat chunks, edible toys are best. If they love to destroy things instead of throwing them a poisonous tennis ball, get them rubber or edible toys that can withstand their destructive play form. For the Violet Beauregard A variety of chewed, braided ropes are your best choices. dogs need chew toys Finding the right one is therefore important for your mental and physical wellbeing – and in the end it will be more fun for both of you.