Do you often find yourself trying to balance a busy life schedule while taking care of your furry friends? No worries – the iFetch automatic dog ball launcher can keep your dog entertained as you go about your daily business. All you do is place balls in the funnel on top, then it automatically shoots them out for you. You can teach your dog to put the ball inside on their own, letting them play by themselves!
iFetch began several years ago in the Hamill family home, where son Grant was doing schoolwork but his dog kept bringing him balls to throw! (Read more about how the iFetch was created.) Today, iFetch is a hugely popular toy – with thousands of happy users – that lets pets chase and fetch balls while owners just sit back and relax.
iFetch has earned many awards, in addition to being featured on Katie Couric’s talk show and earning praise from publications including Outside magazine, MNN, Gizmodo, and the New York Times, Tech Crunch calls it “the perfect balm to soothe the conscience of the lazy dog owner.”
My Experience with iFetch
It’s easy to describe my experience with iFetch: It’s a fantastic product! My dog – a Jack Russell/Rat Terrier mix called Benji – loved it just as much as I did. Although at first I had to drop balls in the machine for him, he soon learned the trick, and started playing fetch by himself! iFetch’s adjustable settings can shoot balls up to 30 feet (9 m) and is definitely most fun outside in the back yard on a sunny day. But when it’s cold and raining, iFetch can also be used indoors. iFetch takes up no more space than two shoeboxes, with dimensions of just 14 x 11 x 9 inches (36 x 28 x 23 cm).
Video credit: goifetch.com
I often get tired running around with Benji since he seems to have an endless supply of energy! If you’re like me and need a ball thrower to help relieve your playtime burden, the iFetch is exactly what you need.
The machine is sturdily built and uses quality materials. It’s considerably better made than the other cheap automatic ball launchers we have tested. Spend a little extra and choose a launcher that lasts longer for the money!
Pets Love It
You can teach your pets how to drop the balls in the slot after retrieving them, so all you need to do is watch (or work) as your doggy friends have fun by themselves. You can also adjust the throw distance to whatever your dog enjoys most.
Long Battery Life
The iFetch runs on AC adapter power (110 or 220 volts) but can also be supplied by six C batteries, providing 30 hours of use. That’s about enough for two weeks of playtime without having to replace the battery!
Pros and Cons:
What We Liked
- Plenty of range
- Great battery life
- Can be used both indoors and outdoors
- Machine is durable and sturdy
What We Didn’t Like
- The motor is a bit too loud
- The balls are too small for big dogs (if you have a big dog, see below to learn about iFetch Too)
Is iFetch Available for Bigger Dogs?
Since the mini-tennis balls used for iFetch are so small, it’s definitely more suited for puppies and small breeds. But what if you have a big dog that wants to play with the iFetch, too?
Don’t fret! In response to popular demand, the “iFetch Too” hit the market in December 2015, thanks to a Kickstarter funding the creation of a larger version. It’s a cool upgrade from the original, shooting balls higher and further. If you own a big dog who wants to play with regular-sized tennis balls, check it out!
Where Do I Buy It?
So how much does iFetch cost? Check amazon.com for the latest deals. If you’ve got any Amazon gift certificates saved up, this might be an ideal time to use them.
A handful of pet stores and retailers sell iFetch, but they tend to charge more; therefore, I recommend buying this product online.
Dimensions approx.: 14 x 11 x 9 inches
Ball size: 1.5 in (40mm) diameter (3 balls included)
Current price: Check Amazon.com
Power: AC adapter or batteries
Battery life: 30 hours with 6 C batteries (Batteries not included)