Don’t tell my wife but I love our dog.  He’s a westie and I wish I could stay home all day and play with him but unfortunately bills need to be paid.  Luckily though I have cameras situated throughout the house so I can keep an eye on him — and yes, tell him off when he is chewing the cable of the expensive lamp but that doesn’t help to keep him entertained.  For that we now have the All For Paws Pet Hyper Fetch Mini.

I came across this on Instagram — or rather my wife did — and of course we thought it would be perfect for our little Westie, Fraser.   The premise is simple, the dog places the ball in the top of the ball launcher which then spits the ball out a considerable distance, the dog then races after it, fetches the ball and the process repeats itself.

So what is it?

The All For Paws Pet Hyper Fetch Mini is effectively a ball launcher where a small tennis ball (3 provided in the box) is placed in the top of the toy. A sensor inside then detects the ball and triggers the launching system.  This company has made these in the past, but they have been a lot bigger and bulkier.  This new mini version is much more compact (21cm X 26cm X 27cm) and perfect for the smaller dog.

The launcher has a setting for distance thrown on the back of it and a wide opening to allow the dog to place the ball back in for it to be thrown again.  The distance settings as 3, 6 and 9 metres — that is on the fly though remember — we set it to 9m to start with and it sure as heck does throw it 9 metres but then it rolls even more.  6 metres was a much better solution for the size of our house, although it does not shoot the ball as high, and Fraser keeps trying to catch the ball on the fly as it was coming out of the toy.

The ball launcher is powered by an AC cable which is far too short for my liking so unless you want to stick six C-size batteries in it you will need to position it close to a power outlet.

So did it keep him entertained? 

Sure it did but unfortunately his Westie-tude got in the way.  As a Westie Fraser is a puppy that rarely does what he is told, unless there is food involved.  He brought the ball back each time we gave him a treat but when there was no treat available, he was all too happy to take the ball underneath the table and begin to chew it to pieces (which is interesting as he doesn’t chew anything other than his toys and the occasional cable — yes we lost a Samsung One optical cable early on). We aren’t the best dog trainers and COVID-19 prevented any proper training last year.

If you have a dog who has been trained correctly and is obedient then you should not have any issues getting your dog to bring the ball back and place it inside the toy and have it shoot out and continually entertain it.  (Or if you have any suggestions for how I could dull the Westie-tude of Fraser just a bit to train him please reach out to me on the EFTM Man Cave on Facebook).  

The toy worked perfectly for the time we have had it and even now three months on it is still shooting the ball as far as at the beginning — although we have gone through a few balls with his chewing of them but the balls can be easily replaced.  We found spare tennis balls from the same company at a nearby pet store — it will shoot other branded balls but the company does not recommend it and the distance it shoots may vary due to the differing sizes and weights of different balls.

Where can you get it?

There are different variations available at most pet stores but the version we used and loved (yes we haven’t given up on training Fraser to use it himself just yet — he is still a puppy) was purchased from Kogan.  If your dog is at home all alone and doesn’t seem to get enough exercise then this is something I recommend — Fraser loved it and even now, after having it for three months the anticipation in his body and visible by his extreme tail wagging is something that warms the heart.

The All For Paws Pet Hyper Fetch Mini is available for $119 and when I consider how much other rubbish my wife has spent on Fraser this price is well worth it for a toy that he loves and will hopefully eventually keep him happy, busy and entertained when we are not around.