Video: Tennis Ball Launcher Provokes Endless Dog Play

Jerry the daschund enjoys playing with this automatic tennis ball launcher, which shoots off the ball every time Jerry puts it back in the hopper. (Thanks, David!)

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27 Responses to Video: Tennis Ball Launcher Provokes Endless Dog Play

  1. Frank_in_Virginia says:

    I love the wagging tail.

  2. semiotix says:

    “and it’ll never trick the dog by making it think you threw the ball, even though you didn’t.”

    That’s a bug. Version 2.0 will correct this.

  3. Kestral says:

    I’d so want to build that if I had plans and a dog. I’d probably want to upgrade it a bit.. build a new base that would allow it to change horizontal and then have a program that throws it with different power levels, altitudes, and azimuths just to keep the dog a bit more interested. Well.. and myself as well.

    But yeah, it’s like 2 minutes of pure, unadulterated joy.

  4. Maneki Nico says:

    And they say animals are dumb. Jerry there has not only figured out how to reload the machine, he also knows it won’t throw the ball until the mechanism cocks the launcher.

    Kestral, it’s only a matter of time until Jerry figures out how to program it himself.

    Nevermind endless dog play, I could watch that all day.

  5. Kestral says:

    Yeah, I notice that the dog has certainly figured out how to use it. Smart dog. I wonder how long it took him to learn how to load and cock the machine.

    Seriously, if I had a dog and thought that the dog would learn how to use the machine to throw their own tennis balls for games of fetch, I’d seriously consider building it for use when I’d be away from the house and the dog would be home alone. It seems like a perfect way to help keep a dog from getting bored. Only thing I’d worry about is that the dog might snap one of the parts and hurt himself.

  6. Kid says:

    (Thanks for keeping Boing Boing a directory of *Wonderful* things, not a directory of political angst.)

    Hehe, it’s like a tennis machine for humans, but now dogs have machines designed for them as well!

  7. Skep says:

    Really, is there anything safer than the combination powerful automated homebrewed robotics and un-attended dogs and children?

    Better count those toes, fingers and cute sobery tongues…

    (i.e., neat device, but dangerous for dogs and children because of the powerful motors used to automatically elevate and retract the sling shot.)

  8. jasperzelf says:

    Jeee! Made me giggle with glee!

  9. Teresa Nielsen Hayden / Moderator says:

    Skep, it can’t have been used unsupervised; otherwise, who’s shooting the footage?

  10. Kevin says:

    I’ve been accumulating parts to assemble something along the same lines for cat amusement, based on the mechanism from one of those cheap “USB missile launcher” toys and fuzzy catnip balls as ammo.

    Biggest problem will be convincing the cats to reload it instead of letting their slaves do the work.

  11. Anonymous says:

    Where can I get one of those?

  12. Skep says:

    BTW, not to belabor the point too much but here is a still of the adorable munchkin where he puts his foot in the path of the scissor -like descending catapult arm.

    http://aycu15.webshots.com/image/49254/2003872810869307195_rs.jpg

    Granted, the maker has taken some precautions as can be seen by the clear plastic safety covers protecting some of the mechanics but the exposed pinch points are still appear to be an amputation hazard, as can be seen in the video.

  13. Skep says:

    Skep, it can’t have been used unsupervised; otherwise, who’s shooting the footage?

    Yes, you are right of course.

    I wasn’t being completely literal in my mockery. However, even attended, this device could snip off a finger faster than the camera operator could react. That, and it seemed implicit to me that such a device could be left on for the dog unattended–but that could just be me.

  14. stagueve says:

    Thats curious, i’ve suggest this vidéo to, i recieved a backlink with my name into it but i can’t see it on BB? Whats happened?

  15. Freddie Freelance says:

    I’m in LUUUUUUUUV! All the joy of a dog chasing a Tennis Ball, none of the Slobber.

  16. strider_mt2k says:

    Pure smiles!

    (Yes yes as long as it doesn’t hurt the children, of course.)

    (THEY screw up EVERYTHING fun.) ;)

  17. w000t says:

    I can only imagine what would happen to this machine if my English Bulldog went to play with it after getting some water.

  18. Anonymous says:

    I want one of these! My dog has more energy than I do and she would be so happy. Are they available somewhere? Sylvia

  19. adriennejenkins says:

    The University of Victoria in British Columbia Canada also invented an automatic tennis ball launching machine for mobility impaired dog lovers. Here’s the specs…
    http://www.squidoo.com/tennis-ball-machines-for-dogs

  20. strider_mt2k says:

    @ WOOOT: -and your walls, and your ceiling…

  21. captainvw says:

    AMPUTATION hazard?!?!?! To me, the machine doesn’t look all that heavy. Plus, we see the mechanism reset when Jerry *almost* replaces the ball (but doesn’t quite). Who’s to say the machine doesn’t sense obstacles in its way and stop, similar to an automatic garage door?

    This looks like a pretty lightweight machine; I wouldn’t be too worried about it hunting down Sarah Connor, or clipping a wayward toenail. GREAT invention. Now we just need a robotic string-swinger for lonesome cats!

  22. FetchFanatic says:

    Someone already invented an automatic fetch machine and you can find the ball launcher at http://www.GoDogGoInc.com. It may even become your dog’s new best friend!! Go to the video page to see some great videos of GoDogGo in action.

  23. leonjacobs says:

    Possibly, the most depressing video I have ever seen on teh interwebs.

  24. Justin Ried says:

    I love the use of the classic Wrist Rocket slingshot! That’s some pretty amazing DIY on all levels.

  25. rezill says:

    I would love the plans for this too… I have a super active dog that I need to keep occupied so she stops digging and taking the clothes off the line. Hope someone may have some ideas

  26. RyanH says:

    Now that is two minutes of pure joy.

  27. Benny says:

    Dogs may be men’s best friend, but clearly, a machine with a ball feeding baby is a dog’s best friend.

    and it’ll never trick the dog by making it think you threw the ball, even though you didn’t.

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