To celebrate the ongoing US Open, I'm rounding up the first round thing to come to mind . . . tennis balls, obviously.
While I already shared a pricey bed, most of you opted to pass for that tennis creation but still want to let pets have a ball! North loves the extra small Air Kong versions 'cause they're super squeaky and fit him perfectly. (He usually tears all the fabric off a normal doggy tennis ball to use the frays to fetch 'em since they don't fit in his mouth.) Since he's pretty darn destructive, I'm shocked how long it takes him to kill the squeakers in this version — they sometimes last a couple of months, which is an eternity in his chompers.
I've gathered up some extraordinary tennis balls for doggies and kitties so check 'em out in the widget below.
The Glow-in-the-Dark Whistle Ball ($15) shines brightly to help him along and is equipped with mini whistles that hum as it goes — if you're still practicing your speedy pitch, the harder you throw it, the louder it whistles! Like many of my top ball picks, it fits into the standard size tosser if you want to keep the slobber away from your mitts. Game on!
There's no reason you have to keep your fun and games out on the sports field. Try adding some sporty sensibilities to your home and garden, too. I've shown you how to get the Grand Slam look, but you don't have to stop with tennis. Step up to the plate with some baseball-related furniture, such as this Joe Lounge Chair ($1,000), or expand your sporting options with these other sports-related home goods.
While I'd recommend tossing (in the garbage) any tennis balls with signs of fraying or peeling rubber, it's a good idea to wash those you'll be keeping this season. Think of all the dirt from endless games of fetch and throw them in the washing machine with some towels and pet-safe detergent.
After the fuzzy balls are cleaned up, you can air out or pop them in a dryer for a special trick. If you add a tennis ball to the dryer, it can help fluff up your drying towels, down bedding or other clothes that need an extra puff and fluff – bonus!
It's a swirly whirly universe with toys that are out of this world! Check these gigantic, galactic orbs sized for dogs 65 pounds and up – they get four out of five "chompers" and are the perfect fit for those big mouths. As with other offerings from Planet Dog, the Cosmos collection ($16) includes a minty smell (taste?) and a Treat Spot for stashing a healthy snack. Catch the four bouncy balls in the widget below.
There are few things kitties like more than discovering toys around the house . . . even if those items weren't meant to be their playthings in the first place! For cats that love the chase, a ball's a toy box must have, but the costs can add up (especially when hidden away by wily cats within minutes).
Although there are plenty of round toys fit for frisky felines, many would love your plastic practice golf balls for their holes. If you're not the indoor golfing type, it's much cheaper to buy a bulk set of ping pong balls and gently use a nail to hammer your own holes for cats to get a grip. This price can't be beat: For just $16, you receive 144 of these and get to hammering.
Let's get the ball rolling in '09! It's important to have the right tennis toss for those wintry afternoons of catch with your pet. That's not to say all animal sizes won't get a kick out of the standard ball, but the small tennies are more catch-worthy for lil mouths where they could be a choking hazard to the big dogs. From teeny tiny ones (usually 1.5-inch in diameter) to the super sized (5-inches in diameter), which ball do you think your pooch would like best?