My little shih tzu loves to play with squeaky toys but when a neighbor recently threw a tennis ball into our yard, he fell in love with the tennis ball. These balls are too big for his mouth and but he begs to play with it. So I am looking for the perfect ball for his size and found that there is a good selection of many kinds of balls and most cost less than ten dollars.
Tennis balls are great for playing catch with dogs. It's cheap and easy to throw a long way. When it hits the ground, it bounces high enough that your dog can catch it with his mouth. There are concerns that the yellow material on the tennis ball is not good for chewing so you might consider getting another ball for your dog to chew on (see the Kong Squeaker or Extreme Kong). Buy a bag of small tennis balls for under $10 or $4 for three or four at many discount stores.
The Huck Dog Toy by West Paws is an eco-friendly bouncy balls that is a favorite because it bounces in so many directions making your dog jump and pay attention. Plus it floats in water and is a good weight. Buy one small for $8.50.
The vet told us about the Kong Wubba and it is a fun ball for big and small dogs. It is a tennis ball on top with a squeaky ball underneath. For little dogs, the ball part can be too big for the mouth but these have a tail on the ball, so little dogs can pick the ball up and run with it. Prices start at $6 at Petco.
The Classic Kong is super bouncy and has treats inside. This rubber ball squeaks and is a very popular ball. There are a variety of Kong balls depending on the breed. For a dog that loves to chew, there is an Extreme Kong. The prices start at $6 at Petco.
The Air Kong Squeaker Dog toy is a tennis ball with a dog-friendly covering (for dogs that chew) and these balls have super bounce and squeaky features. Also try the Football Squeaker. These Squeaker balls start at $6 at Petco.
For the chewing dog ask your local pet shop for the Sherpa Puppy ball. These cute animal balls are resistant to chewing and a tough to tear apart. Most pet stores sell for around $9.
If you throw like a girl like I do, you might consider purchasing the Chuckit! Ball with a launcher. The less than $10 only applies to the smaller balls; larger balls cost a little more. These run around $8-9 at pet stores.
Clutch balls are great ideas for dogs with small mouths. They can grab onto the ball and run with it. These balls are $5-10 for balls under 6 inches.
Organic balls are dye-free and a good choice for dogs with sensitive skin. Red dye can irritate skin and make your dog scratch so select an organic ball that is creamy or flax colored. The ball I bought was medium size but had thick ropes (for a small mouth) and a squeaker inside. Hard to find but some specialty shops carry for around $9.
If your dog is small but loves balls and you can't find a ball that is small enough, get balls with ropes, grips or tails. Most of these are under $10 and you can still play catch. Your dog will be able to run around in the park or your yard with no problems.