The Best Dog Ball Launchers

When a dog loves to play fetch, he’ll drop toy after toy at your feet until you throw them. This can get tiring, and we often burn out faster than our dogs. A dog ball launcher helps ease the shoulder burden of constantly throwing a ball. Available as either manual or automatic, dog ball launchers typically launch a ball further than your arm can throw. And some dog ball launchers can be activated by your dog for solo play time.

We reviewed dozens of dog ball launchers to find the best ones out there. We looked at the variety of sizes and styles offered for launchers, and noted any added features. After we took into account the ease of use and price, we compiled a list of our favorites.

Best Dog Ball Launcher Overall
Chuckit! Pro Launchers
The Chuckit! Pro Launcher is designed to throw the ball further and faster, ideal for medium to extra large dogs.

We chose Chuckit! Pro Launchers as our favorite overall pick for dog ball launchers because they launch a ball fast and far. With a variety of sizes to choose from, both you and your dog are sure to find just the right fit for your throw-and-fetch games.

The 5 Top-Rated Dog Ball Launchers

Editor's PicksBrandRating
Best Dog Ball Launcher OverallChuckit! Pro Launchers4.4
Best Manual Dog Ball LauncherChew King Fetch Balls Dog Toy Ball Launcher4.3
Best Budget Dog Ball LauncherChuckit! Sport Launcher Dog Ball Thrower4.7
Best Automatic Dog Ball ThroweriFetch Interactive Ball Launchers for Dogs3.4
Best Dog Ball BlasterNerf Dog Tennis Ball Blaster Dog Toy – 20-inch Translucent4

*Ratings are from Amazon at the time of publication and can change

Best Dog Ball Launcher Overall: Chuckit! Pro Launchers

Chuckit! Pro Launchers are available in three different lengths and ball sizes. The longer the launcher is, the further the ball will fly when you throw it. But the varying lengths are also in regard to your own height, and the ease of holding and maneuvering a launcher. Recommended for breeds medium to extra large, the Pro Launcher comes in 18, 25, and 26 inches. Each length features a different size ball, available in medium, large, and extra large.

Made from a lightweight, but durable, plastic, this launcher is curved for maximum velocity and distance. But it’s comfortable to hold – important when you spend hours playing fetch with Fido – with an ergonomic handle and rubber-grooved grip. No need to worry about a slobbery ball or one that lands in the mud – Chuckit! launchers are designed to pick up the ball without using your hands. The ball snaps into place, and only releases in response to the force of swinging and throwing the launcher. This launcher comes with a Chuckit! tennis ball, but is also compatible with other Chuckit! toys.

Chuckit! Pro Launchers Key Features:

  • Available in three lengths and three ball sizes
  • Hands-free pickup
  • Rubber-grip, ergonomic handle
  • Comes with tennis ball
  • Compatible with other Chuckit! toys

Best Manual Dog Ball Launcher: Chew King Fetch Balls Dog Toy Ball Launcher

Best Manual Dog Ball Launcher
Chew King Fetch Balls Dog Toy Ball Launcher
The Chew King ball launcher can be adjusted for different levels of throwing, and comes with five rubber balls and one glow-in-the-dark ball.

The best manual dog ball launcher, aside from our overall favorite, is Chew King Fetch Balls Dog Toy Ball Launcher because it offers a range of difficulty levels, and comes with six balls to get you started. The launcher is roughly 18 inches in length, and features a grooved grip to make it easier to hold. Though the launcher is available in one length, the end can be adjusted to switch up the throw setting. A ‘soft’ throw is more appropriate for large or heavy balls, or for those with less strength in their arms. The ‘hard’ setting will launch the ball further, and requires a little more strength and effort.

Chew King offers six balls for its 2.5-inch size, and four balls for its 3-inch size. The rubber balls are made from natural rubber, and feature a hole straight through the middle for enhanced safety. Also included is a glow-in-the-dark ball for when you’re playing after dusk. The balls are easy to clean, and the rubber balls are even dishwasher-safe on the top rack.

Chew King Fetch Balls Dog Toy Ball Launcher Key Features:

  • Available in two ball sizes
  • Adjustable difficulty level
  • Made in the USA
  • Top-rack dishwasher safe

Best Budget Dog Ball Launcher: Chuckit! Sport Launcher Dog Ball Thrower

Best Budget Dog Ball Launcher
Chuckit! Sport Launcher Dog Ball Thrower
Made from a lightweight, but durable, plastic, the Chuckit! Sport Launcher features an ergonomic handle so you can throw the ball further with more accuracy.

Our budget pick is Chuckit! Sport Launcher Dog Ball Thrower. The lightweight launcher is available in five different lengths and three ball sizes. With this variety, the sport launcher can be used with a myriad of dog breeds. Made from durable plastic, the sport dog ball launcher is curved for optimal distance and speed. The ergonomic handle is comfortable for repetitive throwing, helping launch the ball further and faster, and with more accuracy.

Slobbery toys are not a problem for the sport launcher. It’s designed to pick up compatible toys without having to touch a ball that’s covered in doggie saliva or mud. The ball snaps on to the end, and is released by the force of your throw. This sport launcher comes with a Chuckit! tennis ball, but is also compatible with a number of other Chuckit! toys.

Chuckit! Sport Launcher Dog Ball Thrower Key Features:

  • Available in five lengths and three ball sizes
  • Hands-free pickup
  • Easy-to-grip, ergonomic handle
  • Comes with a tennis ball
  • Compatible with other Chuckit! Toys

Best Automatic Dog Ball Thrower: iFetch Interactive Ball Launchers for Dogs

Best Automatic Dog Ball Thrower
iFetch Interactive Ball Launchers for Dogs
Set the distance on this battery-charged dog ball launcher, and fetch is anywhere from 10 to 40 feet.

Not all dog ball launchers require you to manually swing something to throw the ball. Some dog ball launchers feature the ability to keep a hands-off approach, powered by either electricity or batteries. The best automatic dog ball thrower we found is iFetch Interactive Ball Launchers for Dogs. Made for medium to large dogs, set the distance at 10, 25, or 40 feet, or flip it to ‘random’ for more variable play. This automatic launcher has a rechargeable battery; keep it charged, and it will be ready to go when you are.

The iFetch dog ball launcher comes with three standard tennis balls, about 2.5 inches in diameter. Other similar size balls may also be used. This unit functions best when the ball is not too dirty or covered in slobber. Train your dog to put the ball in the back of the unit so she can play fetch by herself. The unit launches immediately, and each charge should last for about 300 launches. iFetch features a safety button for locking the launching distance at 10 feet, good for indoor use and training purposes.

iFetch Interactive Ball Launchers for Dogs Key Features:

  • Uses standard tennis balls
  • Rechargeable battery
  • Ball drops in from the top
  • Available in two sizes
  • ‘Random’ setting available

Best Dog Ball Blaster: Nerf Dog Tennis Ball Blaster Dog Toy

Best Dog Ball Blaster
Nerf Dog Tennis Ball Blaster Dog Toy
When you’re having fun after dusk, the translucent Nerf Dog blaster shows the way with the LED glow ball.

The best dog ball blaster is Nerf Dog Tennis Ball Blaster Dog Toy due to its translucent option with glow-in-the-dark ball. The blaster launches tennis balls up to 50 feet, and with the included LED glow ball, you won’t have trouble seeing it. The unit uses standard size tennis balls, but is available in multiple sizes for various dog breeds. This particular dog ball blaster has a see-through cavity so the LED ball will light up the inside of the blaster. But solid color blasters are also available.

The translucent Nerf Dog blaster is easy to use, and allows you to adjust the distance of the throw. Pull back on the lever on the barrel, drop the ball in, aim, and press the trigger to release the ball. Never aim at anyone or anything. The ergonomic handle creates a comfortable grip. And the blaster has a ball clip to conveniently store an unused tennis ball. Don’t worry about a slobbery ball – just press the open end of the barrel on top of the ball to pick it up.

Nerf Dog Tennis Ball Blaster Dog Toy Key Features:

  • High-visibility glow ball
  • Shoots up to 50 feet
  • Hands-free pickup
  • Ball clip attached
  • Available in multiple sizes and solid color

Who Should Buy a Dog Ball Launcher

Just about anyone with a dog knows what it’s like to play an endless game of fetch, where your arm tires out long before your dog does. And many also know the pain of picking up a gross, muddy, slobbery, slippery toy that your dog is more than thrilled to go chase again for the upteenth time.

Maybe you have a high-energy breed, or a dog who is obsessed with fetch, and are unable to devote hours of arm-throwing time to wear her out. Or maybe strength or an injury is keeping you from playing fetch with your pooch.

A dog ball launcher isn’t just fun for your dog – it aids you in playing an endless game of fetch, takes the burden off your arm and shoulder, and allows you to play with your dog when you might not have been able to otherwise. A ball launcher often throws the ball further and faster than your arm could. And automatic ball launchers work under simple supervision.

Best Dog Ball Launcher Overall
Chuckit! Pro Launchers
The Chuckit! Pro Launcher is designed to throw the ball further and faster, ideal for medium to extra large dogs.

Important Features to Consider

A dog ball launcher should have a few important features. Here’s what to consider when selecting a dog ball launcher:

  • Manual or automatic. Consider whether you want to use a manual or automatic dog ball launcher. Manual launchers are a good way to play with your dog, but save your shoulder. They’re also easy to travel with, and are convenient for on-the-go. Automatic dog ball launchers help when you’re unable to spend the time or energy throwing a ball for a game of fetch.
  • Size of your dog. Consider the size of your pooch. Smaller dogs need smaller toy balls, which means you’ll need a smaller launcher. Bigger dogs require larger launchers. The toy balls should be an adequate size for the mouth of a larger dog, to avoid a choking hazard. Larger launchers also launch the ball further and faster. Manual launchers come in a variety of sizes, but typically the longer the handle, the further the throw. Automatic launchers come in small and large.
  • Added features. Ball launchers come in a variety of styles, and therefore may have different additional features for you to consider. Manual ball launchers may have a place to store additional balls, or allow you to interchange compatible toys. Automatic ball launchers may offer the opportunity to set the distance of the throw, or might feature the capability to set a random pattern.
  • Ease of use and cleaning. A dog ball launcher is only fun for everyone if it’s easy to use. Consider your physical ability to use a ball launcher. Manual launchers require swinging your arm over your head, while automatic launchers may require you to bend over to place the ball in the unit. Also consider how easy it is to clean the launcher. Most ball launchers can be cleaned by hand, and some balls are dishwasher friendly.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a dog ball launcher and how does it work?

A dog ball launcher is a manual or automatic device that throws, or launches, a toy ball so your dog can chase it. A manual dog ball launcher holds a toy ball, typically a tennis ball, on the opposite end of your grip. The ball stays put until you swing the launcher over your head. The force of your throw releases the ball, making it fly through the air.

An automatic dog ball launcher runs on either electricity or batteries. The ball is placed in the unit, and the power source launches the ball to a set distance and angle.

How do you use a dog ball launcher?

A manual dog ball launcher requires you to swing the launcher with your arm to release the tennis ball. The ball is placed on the end, and you fling it through the air. It depends on the brand launcher you are using as to how far and fast the ball will travel. An automatic dog ball launcher doesn’t require as much physical ability. The tennis ball is placed in the unit – by either you or your dog – and is launched through the air via a power source, such as electricity or batteries.

How long should I play fetch with my dog?

How long you should play fetch with your dog really depends on your dog. Not all breeds can withstand the same amount or type of exercise. For best results, visit with your veterinarian to determine the safest exercise routine for your pooch.

Do dog ball launchers require special balls?

Dog ball launchers may require special balls for its specific design. Many manufacturers offer a line of compatible toys to go with their launchers. Some dog ball launchers are compatible with a standard tennis ball, and do not require special balls.

Other Dog Ball Launchers We Reviewed

Best Dog Ball Launcher Overall
Chuckit! Pro Launchers
The Chuckit! Pro Launcher is designed to throw the ball further and faster, ideal for medium to extra large dogs.

We looked at 20 other dog ball launchers. Even though they didn’t make our 5 best dog ball launchers list, they’re still great options for playing fetch with your pooch. The information you need to compare each one is included with the listing.

Manual Dog Ball Launchers

Chuckit! Max Glow Pro Launchers

Chuckit! Max Glow Pro Launchers

For playing fetch after sundown, the Chuckit! Max Glow launcher features the pro launcher and ball with glow-in-the-dark capabilities.

Key Features:

  • Available in two lengths
  • Compatible with other Chuckit! toys
  • Rubber-grip, ergonomic handle

Cost: $10

Chuckit! Ultra Grip Ball Launcher

Chuckit! Ultra Grip Ball Launcher

Made for long-range throwing, Chuckit! offers an ultra grip ball launcher that features a long, ergonomic handle with a comfortable rubber grip.

Key Features:

  • Hands-free pickup
  • Rubber-groove grip
  • Maximum distance with little effort

Cost: $2

Franklin Pet Supply Dog Fetch Toy Tennis Ball Launcher

Franklin Pet Supply Dog Fetch Toy Tennis Ball Launcher

The Franklin Pet Supply ball launcher features a flexible, 25-inch long handle to make throwing easier.

Key Features:

  • Comfort-grip handle
  • Hands-free pickup
  • Tennis ball has squeaker

Cost: $14

Nylabone Power Play Fling-A-Bounce Dog Toy

Nylabone Power Play Fling-A-Bounce Dog Toy

A little different than the average ball launcher, the Nylabone Fling-A-Bounce dog toy features a launch loop that allows the toy to fly up to 80 feet.

Key Features:

  • Rubber toy with canvas material
  • For medium dog breeds
  • Tassels for tug play

Cost: $8

Unique Launch-It Dog Ball Thrower

Unique Launch-It Dog Ball Thrower

The Unique Launch-It Dog Ball Thrower features an ergonomic handle that stores one tennis ball while you’re throwing the other one.

Key Features:

  • Comes with two tennis balls
  • Hands-free pickup, with 21-inch long handle
  • Compatible with other Unique fetch balls

Cost: $10

Automatic Dog Ball Launchers

All for Paws Interactive Automatic Dog Ball Launcher

All for Paws Interactive Automatic Dog Ball Launcher

For small to medium dog breeds, this ball launcher tosses small tennis balls from 10 to 30 feet.

Key Features:

  • Includes three tennis balls
  • 3-year warranty
  • Use with power cord or batteries

Cost: $101

Felix & Fido Playball! Automatic Ball Launcher for Dogs

Felix & Fido Playball! Automatic Ball Launcher for Dogs

Designed for small dogs, the Felix & Fido ball launcher features three throw settings, and launches balls up to 20 feet.

Key Features:

  • Use with power cord or batteries
  • Uses miniature tennis balls
  • Includes three tennis balls

Cost: $70

IDOGMATE Interactive Ball Launchers for Dogs

IDOGMATE Interactive Ball Launchers for Dogs

Made for dogs under 30 pounds, this ball launcher throws miniature tennis balls from 10 to 35 feet.

Key Features:

  • Random distance setting
  • Auto turn-off feature
  • Rechargeable battery

Cost: $99

iFetch Interactive Ball Launchers for Dogs – Small

iFetch Interactive Ball Launchers for Dogs – Small

Made for small dogs, the iFetch ball launcher throws miniature balls from 10 to 30 feet.

Key Features:

  • 1-year warranty
  • Uses mini tennis balls
  • Large, angled opening to drop ball in

Cost: $114

PetSafe Automatic Ball Launcher Dog Toy

PetSafe Automatic Ball Launcher Dog Toy

The PetSafe ball launcher throws balls from 8 to 30 feet, and features a cycle of 15 minutes of play and 15 minutes of rest. This launcher has nine distance settings and six angle settings.

Key Features:

  • Safety sensor for up to 7 feet
  • Use with power cord or batteries
  • Uses standard tennis balls

Cost: $155

Dog Ball Blasters

Hyper Pet K9 Kannon K2 Ball Launcher

Hyper Pet K9 Kannon K2 Ball Launcher

The Hyper Pet K9 Kannon features a comfortable grip handle and a place to store two tennis balls.

Key Features:

  • Hands-free pickup
  • 24 inches long
  • Adjustable launching distance

Cost: $20

Hyper Pet K9 Kannon K2 Ball Launcher – Mini

Hyper Pet K9 Kannon K2 Ball Launcher – Mini

Designed for fetch with smaller dogs, the mini K9 Kannon by Hyper Pets features a mini-size tennis ball for launching.

Key Features:

  • Hands-free pickup
  • Stores two tennis balls
  • Adjustable launching distance

Cost: $15

Nerf Dog Tennis Ball Blaster Dog Toy – 16-inch Compact

Nerf Dog Tennis Ball Blaster Dog Toy – 16-inch Compact

Launch a Nerf tennis ball up to 50 feet for your pooch to fetch with the compact tennis ball blaster.

Key Features:

  • Non-toxic and BPA-free tennis balls
  • Hands-free pickup
  • Compatible with Nerf Dog sonic balls

Cost: $12

Dog Toy Launchers

Chuckit! Ring Chaser Launcher Dog Toy

Chuckit! Ring Chaser Launcher Dog Toy

Switch up the game of fetch using the Chuckit! Ring Launcher, and watch the ring bounce in multiple directions and move in an unpredictable manner.

Key Features:

  • Hands-free pickup
  • Lightweight and durable
  • Ergonomic handle

Cost: $13

Multipet Slinger with Dog Toy Fish

Multipet Slinger with Dog Toy Fish

Fling a fish instead of a ball with the Multipet Slinger; the launching toy is a plush fish made with durable canvas. It floats, and it’s washable.

Key Features:

  • Easy-grip handle
  • 21.5-inch long handle
  • Hands-free pickup

Cost: $12

Multipet Slinger with Dog Toy Pig

Multipet Slinger with Dog Toy Pig

Who says pigs can’t fly? The Multipet Slinger features a pink, plush pig with wings to throw for your pup to fetch.

Key Features:

  • Made with durable, washable canvas
  • Hands-free pickup
  • 21.5-inch handle

Cost: $12

Other Dog Ball Launchers

Multipet Slinger with Dog Toy Ball

Multipet Slinger with Dog Toy Ball

The Multipet Slinger ball whistles when you throw it with the long handle.

Key Features:

  • 21.5-inch long handle
  • Hands-free pickup
  • Ball is made from rubber

Cost: $12

Nerf Dog Stomper with Interactive Tennis Ball Launcher

Nerf Dog Stomper with Interactive Tennis Ball Launcher

The Nerf Dog Stomper uses the power of your feet to launch a tennis ball up to 75 feet for your dog to chase.

Key Features:

  • Easy to use
  • Compatible with standard tennis balls
  • Angled for optimal length

Cost: $19

Outward Hound Zipstick Launcher Ball Thrower

Outward Hound Zipstick Launcher Ball Thrower

Great for multiple-dog households or group fun at the park, the Outward Hound ball launcher fits up to three Woofie Ballz at once in one throw. The launcher comes with two Woofie Ballz, which also float in water.

Key Features:

  • Makes a zipping sound when launching
  • Easy to clean
  • Hands-free pickup

Cost: $10

Powzer Dual Ball Thrower

Powzer Dual Ball Thrower

The Powzer Dual Ball Thrower features a ball at either end of the folding handle, with comfort grip.

Key Features:

  • Comes with flashing ball and tennis ball
  • Comes with attachable belt clip
  • Extends to 29 inches

Cost: $13

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