Every dog owner knows very well how much dogs love to chew their toys or things. It doesn’t matter if they are chewable or not, dogs will chew everything they see or are playing with. But things like baseballs can be dangerous for dogs, so owners like me usually think, like…
Can a Dog Chew on Baseball?
Baseballs, composed of hard rubber or leather, they’re safe for mild-chewers as they are less likely to break them. However, if your dog is aggressive-chewer, the chances of breaking the baseball into small pieces are high. If ingested, these pieces can lead to throat obstruction.
In Baseball, the leather cover is generally safer for dogs to chew but may cause digestive issues if ingested in large amounts. The yarn or winding inside is not toxic but can lead to digestive problems. But the core (grape-sized cork ball covered with rubber) can lead to bleeding gums.
7 Reasons Why Your Dog Chews on a Baseball:
Now you know if your dog can chew a baseball or not, you might have this question in your mind: “why does a dog chew on a baseball” anyway? There can be different reasons behind it. Some of them are the following:
Exploration And Play:
Dogs, especially young puppies love to explore everything around them. They become excited to see every new item around them. This can be anything like walls, toys, or even a baseball. Their way of exploring things is by chewing them. They want to taste and smell everything and know what it is. Another reason can be that your dog loves this new item and enjoys playing with it.
Like us, dogs also face teething issues. Although it is more common in young ones, older dogs can face it too. As a result of teething they feel an urge to chew anything they find. This can be the reason why your dog chews on a baseball.
Another possible reason can be that your dog is simply bored and wants to play. Dogs get bored very easily and want the attention of their owner to play with them. That is why they sometimes start to chew things like baseball.
Anxiety Or Stress:
Dogs also sometimes face issues of anxiety and stress. As a sign of anxiety, they chew different things like baseball. In this case, you cannot do anything about the dog chewing baseball until you reduce its stress and anxiety levels.
Another possible reason can be that a dog is chewing a baseball just to gain attention. Whenever the dog chews the ball, someone may come and tell it to stop, indirectly giving attention to the dog. As a result, the dog may set this as a trigger, and whenever it wants attention, it may start to chew a baseball or any other similar item.
Dogs also get attracted to certain smells and textures of some things. So one possible reason behind your dog chewing baseball is that they might be attracted to its shape, texture, or scent.
Lack Of Appropriate Chew Toys:
If you see your dog chewing baseball, that could be a sign that your dog does not have good chewing toys. If that’s the case, you should buy some for them as almost every dog in this world LOVES chew toys.
How to Prevent Your Dog from Chewing on Baseballs?
Chewing baseballs can be very dangerous for dogs as they pose different health risks. Hence, the following methods can be tried to stop your dog from chewing baseballs:
If you have a lot of baseballs in your house, you should immediately remove them from your house if you want your dog not to chew them. This is because as many baseballs are present in your house, more easily they will be accessible to your dog.
Provide Appropriate Chew Toy:
As discussed above, buy your dog some good quality chew toys. Dogs want to chew something either due to teething issues or due to anxiety. But when they do not find anything appropriate, they start to chew such dangerous things like baseballs. So it is better to give them a safe object that they can chew. If they are fond of baseballs only then try to give them chewable baseballs which you can find in any pet store near you.
Teach your dog different training commands like “no” “stop” “don’t” etc. Once your dog learns to follow these commands, you can successfully stop them from chewing baseballs.
Can a Dog Chew on a Tennis Ball?
Just like baseballs, dogs also love to chew on tennis balls. But tennis balls are also hazardous for them just like baseballs. They can cause choking in dogs. Although the ball itself does not result in choking, dogs tend to remove its outer material and eat it which obstructs digs throat. Also, chewing tennis balls can have bad effects on the oral health of your dog as it causes dental wear and tear.
That is why dogs should only be allowed to play with tennis balls when they are under your supervision so that you can take care that your dog does not get harmed by chewing on a tennis ball. Dr. Thomas Chamberlain, who is a board-certified veterinary dental specialist warns dog owners about tennis balls as they are very rough and made for tennis courts. Dirt and sand accumulate in them which acts like sandpaper and causes wear and tear of the dog’s teeth.
Does My Dog Have Pica?
Pica is termed as a health condition in dogs in which they tend to chew or eat nonfood items. Such as when a dog starts eating leather, walls, etc. if you have also observed that your dog loves to eat baseballs or any such items, there are chances that your pet might be suffering from pica.
Pica develops in dogs either due to boredom or due to anxiety. It can also be the result of some health conditions in dogs such as due to lack of nutrients, they might start eating different things. This condition needs serious attention and must be consulted with the vet.
Good Alternatives for Your Dog to Chew Other than Baseball
As discussed, baseball is not a good item for a dog to chew on. So, safer alternatives include:
Specifically designed to promote dental health by reducing plaque and tartar buildup. Look for ones approved by veterinary associations. Some popular dental chews for dogs are:
- Greenies Dental Dog Treats
- Pedigree Dentastix
- Virbac C.E.T. Enzymatic Oral Hygiene Chews
Another replacement you can use is to give your dog Kong® Busy-Box which you can fill with different treats. These are also recommended by the Humane Society. Your dog will love it and will enjoy chewing it more than baseball.
These are durable, non-edible chew toys made of nylon. They come in various shapes and sizes, catering to different chewing preferences.
Some dogs love to chew on rawhide, but it’s not suitable for all dogs. You can consider alternatives like compressed rawhide, dental bones, or vegetable-based chews.
Made from natural fibers, rope toys are great for playing tug-of-war and can also satisfy a dog’s chewing instincts.
These are natural, easily digestible chews made from beef or other proteins. Ensure they are appropriate for your dog’s size and monitored while chewing.