Home Pets Is a Dog Ball Launcher Right for Your Dog?

Is a Dog Ball Launcher Right for Your Dog?

by Olivia Sutton

Playing fetch is a quintessential part of owning a dog.  It’s a great way to get man’s best friend out and exercising and the perfect way to bond with your pet.  Yet, there are more options than you would think when it comes to buying one, so it can be a little confusing to know which one Fido will particularly love, and whether you actually need one in the first place. We here at Surf’n’Buy are huge pet lovers and understand why you want to get your pet pooch the best of the best when it comes to toys.  Need some convincing that a dog ball launcher is Fido’s next favorite toy?  Let us tell you all of the reasons why they are great for him, and great for you.

Why Buy a Dog Ball Launcher?

Although thoroughly domesticated, dogs were traditionally bred for hunting and farm work meaning they need a lot of exercise to keep them fit and healthy.  Without it, dogs can become anxious and irritable, so it’s important to make sure that your pet gets enough time to run around and be a dog.  Since humans also need a good amount of exercise, your dog is also a great excuse to get out and get moving. Rather than putting Fido to work in fields and forests, fetch is a great way to keep him lean and fit in the garden or in the park. 

The only downside to fetch is that it can be hard on the arms to repeatedly throw the ball for your furry friend.  It can also be a little difficult to throw it far enough for especially energetic dogs who need more running around to get their fill of playtime.  This is where a dog ball launcher comes in handy.  It extends the leverage of a normal throw so the ball goes further and your dog has to run a little further to retrieve the ball, getting them more of that all-important exercise.  There are manual and automatic options to make your life as a pet owner that little bit easier.

Manual Dog Ball Launchers

The simplest option is a manual dog ball launcher.  Manual launchers extend the arc of the throw so the ball travels further and your dog has a longer distance to run.  This is great if you have a bigger dog who needs a lot of exercise to stay fit and healthy.

These launchers are great when out in the park or for use in the garden to add some great distance to your fetch sessions and keep Fido running around.  They are also the most affordable option so you don’t have to spend a fortune to get your pet more exercise.  They are also much easier to change the distance thrown, as this is down to the owner and not a pre-set distance on a machine.

Manual dog launchers aren’t just for the benefit of pets, though.  These options come in a number of different designs to make fetch even more fun for people as well as pooches.  However, a simple design is just as effective.

Automatic Dog Ball Launchers

Unfortunately, we don’t all have the time to spend throwing a ball back and forth, and some of us may not be able to keep up with our pets for a variety of reasons.  This makes an automatic dog ball launcher an excellent option.  Although a little pricier than manual options, automatic dog ball launchers remove the need to keep throwing the ball by hand.  These launchers throw balls at an adjustable time and an adjustable distance so that you can tailor your use to fit your dog’s needs.  This is great if you have a particularly large training area, or a dog that needs more exercise than you can provide it with a manual dog ball launcher.

The drawback of automatic dog ball launchers is that they are slightly more expensive than other options and they are not as suitable for use in public places such as parks, as they need to be set up.

Features to Consider

Of course, the first consideration you need to make is whether you need a manual or an automatic dog ball launcher to fit both your needs as well as the needs of your dog.  Manual options are much cheaper, but automatic launchers offer the useful handsfree option so you can get your dog running around without having to keep throwing the ball yourself.

You also need to consider where you are going to play fetch with your dog.  If you don’t have a large garden, a manual dog ball launcher may be a better option as you can regulate how far the ball travels so as not to lose it.  However, if you have a lot of space, you won’t be limited and can pick any option you like.

If you’re looking to buy an automatic dog ball launcher, it is essential to look for certain safety features.  The most important is a parameter sensor which will stop the launcher from throwing when the dog is nearby.  This will keep your dog being injured from a ball hitting it at high speed, especially if the launcher is set to throw a particularly long distance.

Finally, be careful about the size of the ball you use for your dog ball launchers.  For large dogs, small balls can be a choking hazard, so make sure the ball is big enough not to be a danger to your pooch, but not so big that they can’t pick it up.  Most dogs are suited to a tennis ball sized ball but smaller dogs, such as Chihuahuas, may do better with something slightly smaller.


A dog ball launcher is a great investment as a pet owner to get you and your dog out and exercising and give him the amount of running around he needs.  Considering a dog ball launcher, both automatic or manual is something you won’t regret as it will keep Fido happy and save your arms a lot of hard work.

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