Why do Dogs Love Tennis Balls

September 21, 2023

why do dogs love tennis balls

ourpetcard.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program where we receive a small commission on a product you purchase. 

Can dogs have tennis balls?

Are dogs and tennis balls a true match?

Are regular size tennis balls good for dogs?

Great queries we answer in this write-up that shows why tennis balls are their best prey and friend. 

Tennis Balls, One of Dog's Best Friends

Dogs love tennis balls and their obsession with them is a sight to behold.

They are a classic and time-tested toy that gives hours of exercise, excitement, and entertainment, and tossing one to your four-legged friend gives them much-needed exercise and lets you forge a bond and trust with them, it is no doubt a magical, friendship-building activity for dogs and their owners to enjoy.

Spending time with your dog at home is surely a great way to build a bond but outdoor-quality time can build a trusted and strengthened connection that lasts a lifetime.

Throwing the tennis ball for your dog to chase and return is a fun time for them, and the joy it brings to their day makes them happier overall as the exercise they get from chasing the fuzzy green balls is great for their health.

All this said, why do dogs like fetch, and why do dogs like tennis balls so much?

To start, tennis balls are small, bouncy, and erratic in motion, traits that mimic prey in the wild.

Their fast movement and unpredictability makes them a joy and challenge for dogs to grab and catch.

But there is more to their love for playing fetch and catching tennis balls, let us take an even closer look.

A Dog’s Instinct for Chasing Balls

To grasp why dogs love chasing balls as much as they do you need to first glance into their genetic past.

Going back to ancient eras, dogs have ancestrally been known to hunt, chase, and return items/animals.

It is in their blood, it is what they did for many centuries, and it is an activity they truly love to partake in.

To begin, wolves are the oldest dog relatives and passed on most of the traits dogs are now known for, this needs to be known to grasp why dogs act the way they do as the instinct of wolves is to catch prey and return it to their den (behavior that influenced the domesticated dogs that live in our homes today).

This said, once a tennis ball leaves your grip, the instincts of your dog take over as they strive to run and hunt the ball as if it were their next meal; the erratic runaway movement of balls awakens the huntsman that lies in their DNA and blood, and it is a high adrenaline task that is great for their high energy levels.

Of course, some dogs enjoy fetch more than others as some breeds were bred to exempt such behaviors but despite this, many still have predatory traits and instincts even though humans began domesticating them over ten thousand years ago.

All this said, times changed, and dogs now hunt in the wild less than ever before, which is why outlets like tossing a ball are a great way for them to let out the predatory drive or energy they have in them.

Like rabbits or other prey in the wild, tennis balls are erratic and unpredictable, and do well at mimicking the movement of prey that brings out the inner prey-hunting drive and instincts many dogs still possess.

Why do dogs like chasing tennis balls?

Dogs chasing a ball are happy and having fun, and playing fetch with a dog is an activity owners have done with their four-legged friends for centuries.

Dogs love chasing tennis balls simply due to it being FUN.

As they chase balls and return them to you (their master), they feel they achieved a goal, and in return, get pleasure from it, them bringing you the ball is a reward in their eyes and makes them feel good, like how people draw pleasure from getting goals and daily tasks tackled.

Adding to this, dogs love attention and human contact and truly enjoy the quality time you spend with them, making dogs and tennis balls a great activity given the time you and your dog will spend together.

Now that you see why dogs love balls you may be asking what balls are good for fetch and playtime, let us review some of the best tennis balls for dogs so you get ones that will hold up to hours of play/biting.

Best Tennis Balls for Dogs

Dogs enjoy tennis balls more than other ball types as their small size and bouncy nature makes them fun to chase and easy to bite or chew, here are some of the best dog tennis balls to get for your furry friend:

West Paw, Zogoflex Dog Ball Chew Toy

West Paw, Zogoflex Dog Ball Chew Toy

This bouncy-durable toy is great for chews and fetch and is offered in three sizes that make it easy to get the one that is the right size for your pup.  Soft, bouncy, and durable, it is great for fetch and lasts longer than tennis balls that can start to wear after an hour or two of play.  From small to large dogs, this chew toy is a perfect way to give your dog hours of fun, and it can last many months given its strong material.

If you want a cheap and long-lasting ball and chew toy, check it out on Amazon as it has great reviews and is one of the best balls for dogs you can get for the price (per my actual experience with this toy).

Chuckit! Ultra Toy for 20-60 Pound Dogs

Chuckit! Ultra Ball Dog Toy

Coming in a pack of two, the Chuckit! Ultra ball for dogs is ideal for twenty to sixty-pound breeds, and it has two-inch and two-and-a-half-inch varieties that ensure your dog gets the perfect bite each time.  As a personal favorite, this has been one of my go-to balls for years as it is very durable and has nearly the same size as a tennis ball, which makes it simple to throw and easy for my dog to retrieve and play with.

SodaPup, Crazy Bounce Dog Toy and Ball 

SodaPup Crazy Bounce – Durable Dog Ball Toy & Chew

Made in the U.S. from natural rubber/materials, this dog-safe, high-bounce toy is just the ball you need if giving your dog a great time and workout is the goal.  With its erratic bounce and 2.875-inch diameter, it is great for big dogs as its chewable rubber can handle lots of biting and pressure, making the catch for dogs all that more rewarding.

Kimee Dog Tennis Balls for Aggressive Chewers

Why do dogs love tennis balls

With two colors that are easy for dogs to see and track down, Kimee dog balls are best on this list for hefty dogs and aggressive chewers as these bite-proof, highly durable balls can take a serious beating.

With one-, three-, and four-ball options, you can get as many as you need for your dogs, and its rigid and durable material is great for the dental health of your dog as it can handle any amount of biting pressure it is given.  If your dog is a real chewer and likes to manhandle toys, balls, or items around the home, this is the one to get.

ourpetcard.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program where we receive a small commission on a product you purchase.