by Mitch (United States of America, Virginia)
This will keep your dog busy for a few minutes and is great fun! It rolls around, bounces, and best of all, it drops food or treats!!! Also, fun to throw and play fetch with.
- Tennis ball (used or new, it doesn’t matter!)
- Cutting utensil (scissors or a good knife work well)
- Something edible to fill the toy with
- Simply cut a hole in the side of the ball about 3/4 inch diameter circle.
- Fill it up with whatever treats you want; I use dog food as it is inexpensive and doesn’t make my dog sick if he eats a lot.
I cut two holes, but I would not recommend this as the food falls out too fast.
Teach your dog how to use it: let him/her sniff the hole, then drop it as to make the food fall out. Repeat until he/she understands.
The tennis ball can be hard to cut, so be careful!!!
Mitch, this is a great idea – thank you very much for submitting it!
Note to our visitors: If you’re going to use dog kibble like Mitch did, and that is what you normally feed your dog, I would suggest you use this as a way to feed your dog his or her meal, rather than for treats in between meals. This is very useful for dogs that tend to gulp their food down too quickly, and for dogs that get bored easily. Note that when food is swallowed too fast, it doesn’t give the stomach time to signal that it is full, so the dog may beg for more or appear unsatisfied for a while after eating.
If you want to use this tennis ball treat dispenser for an occasional set of treats, I would suggest filling it with bits of apple or other types of fruit; raw or cooked vegetable pieces; and/or small bits of cheese or cooked meat. You may want to measure how much food you put in and see how much is left after your dog has played with the dispenser, so you know by how much to reduce your dog’s next meal. Overfeeding your dog can be harmful to the dog’s joints and heart, particularly if your dog becomes overweight. At the very least, your dog will likely have to poop more often or in greater amounts, and may produce smelly flatulence.
I do think this tennis ball treat dispenser could be every bit as useful as ones you buy, and a whole lot cheaper, especially if you can get used tennis balls (simply go to your local tennis court and look in the trash bins).