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Eating the Fuzz off Tennis Balls

This forum is for dog lovers seeking everyday advice and suggestions on health-related issues. Remember, however, that advice on a public forum simply can't be a substitute for proper medical attention. Only your vet can say assuredly what is best for your dog.

  
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Maxwell Smart

The dog park toy- thief!
 
 
Barked: Wed May 19, '10 12:04pm PST 
Our neighbour gave Max a tennis ball to play with last night and said we could take it home. Just now, I found some green fuzz in his poop. He didn't seem to have any trouble pooping, but I just wondered how safe tennis balls were, and whether or not I should be concerned about Max playing with it?
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Trigger

*Blackdog*
 
 
Barked: Wed May 19, '10 12:30pm PST 
The eating part wasn't a big deal, it's the chewing part that's going to fudge up his teeth.

Trigger is obsessed with them and once upon a time used to consume the pieces if he got them apart. I let him do it, seemed to make him happy and I thought it was harmless but then someone described to me that the green fiber is just like a nail file, it'll wear down the enamel on his teeth like nothing else. It's even worse if the ball has like, gotten dirt on it and they chew on it then. My vet confirmed they are awful for a dogs teeth.

Tennis balls are for fetching, not chewing (or thereby consuming).
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Squ'mey

too old to eat- any more KD
 
 
Barked: Wed May 19, '10 3:57pm PST 
It depends on the quality of the ball. Tennis balls from China use a toxic glue which can harm/kill a dog! I have not heard the same said of North American products. Keep an eye on the ball and take it away when it breaks, because if they eat the rubber pieces it can cause a blockage that might require surgery.
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Romeo

Everyones little- Romeo
 
 
Barked: Wed May 19, '10 5:38pm PST 
My ex's dog use to do that and apparently it perminatly messed up his tummy cause of the chemicals used to make the glue and the dyes for the tennis balls. What we did was started buying him coconuts. big grin

He could De-fuzz them, his poo was a bit fuzzy but since everything was all natural it did no damage to his tummy- and eat everything inside when he finally managed to crack it open.
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Mikey

You know you- want to pet me
 
 
Barked: Wed May 19, '10 11:54pm PST 
Mikey is obsessed with tennis balls. He can find one buried deeeeep in a bush at 10 paces. Amazes me.
He loves to fetch it, maybe 2-3 times, then he wants to lay down and chew it up. Luckily he doesn't eat it. Never has and actually spits the pieces out. It's kind of funny.
Anyway--he will find a tennis ball about twice a week on our walks (sometimes we'll go weeks without finding one)and either destroy it right there on someone's lawn or bring it home and destroy it.
It takes about 15 minutes and then he's done. A lot of the time he just chews it until it's split and then he's not interested in it anymore.
Doing that about 2-3 times a week for about 10-15 minutes, is that going to do damage to his teeth?
I don't buy them and like I said earlier, sometimes he doesn't chew on one for a week or two, but I'm hearing a lot lately of how they act like a file on a dogs teeth and I'm hoping the small amount that Mikey chews on one won't ruin his teeth.

Buying a smooth ball that's big enough (so it doesn't get lodged in the back of his throat), is expensive. And since he destroys the smooth balls within a matter of minutes after he's done playing fetch, I just can't see spending that kind of money ($6-$7 a pop) on a smooth ball every time.

I know dogs shouldn't chew on tennis balls, but is a small amount of time doing so, ok?

OP, I wouldn't let your dog swallow the fuzz. Especially if it's made in China. The crap that they make things with have been out of our manufacturing for years. Either way, don't let him eat the fuzz.
I don't know if your dog totally destroys balls, but if not, buy him smooth, squeaky balls. Make sure they're over sized.
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Tessie

Which way did- they go?
 
 
Barked: Thu May 20, '10 8:53am PST 
Tessie loves tennis balls! Only problem is she goes right through them in 5 minutes! I was on a quest to find one she couldn't manage to ruin in a few minutes and got her one of the larger Kong squeaky tennis balls. It has lasted 3 weeks so far! Maybe try one of those, they are made esp for dogs. way to go
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Lucille

I am the Sock- Bandit!!!
 
 
Barked: Thu May 20, '10 9:21am PST 
Be careful with using any old tennis balls. As others have said, the fuzz can damage the enamel on dog's teeth. Also, the ball itself can come apart almost in half and your dog can swallow it down. I caught my dog just after she got one in half, and haven't given her one since. My friend's GSP had to have expensive surgery to remove a half-eaten tennis ball, no way could it pass naturally.

I've found the Kong airballs to be good, they're fuzzy too, but it's a shorter nap and not so damaging. There are good quality hard surface balls. Avoid anything made in China, their surface materials are often poisonous.
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Squ'mey

too old to eat- any more KD
 
 
Barked: Thu May 20, '10 5:36pm PST 
Mikey. Have you tried a Jolly Ball? They are big & sturdy & almost indestructible. People also use them for horses to play with & even the horse can't destroy it! They cost about 20$ and are about the size of a soccer ball with a handle to throw it. I'm planning on trying one out for Squ'mey because he too can destroy a tennis ball in about 2 minutes flat and shreds the shiny ones too.
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Ikan

976039
 
 
Barked: Thu May 20, '10 6:12pm PST 
Because of the chemicals in them, only let them play with tennis balls that are made for dogs. The ones made for playing tennis are not safe.
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Fable

Fubble luvs- peanut butter- bubbles
 
 
Barked: Thu May 20, '10 6:22pm PST 
Sorry, but I can't buy that a dog that can chew through raw bones from several species with ease can have issues with a tennis ball.

My Golden was 10 when he passed, got a new package of tennis balls every week literally his entire life (slight obsession...). His teeth were as white as a two year old's. My vet could never get over his beautiful teeth. Mind you, he ate 100% raw until the last year of his life.

And before anyone comments on his age at passing, he suffered for eight years from epilepsy, hypothyroidism, idiopathic alopecia, hip dysplasia and auto immune hemolitic anemia.

My point is that I've never seen any EVIDENCE that tennis balls destroy enamel. I need evidence before I take away my dog's fave toy.

My oldest girl, Lexus, has the worst teeth in my pack... and she wont chew on anything unless it comes from the freezer covered in meat. She's just got poor genetics.
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