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Gone are the days of a boring plastic squeaky ball, interactive dog toys that utilize batteries, Bluetooth, and smart technology have taken over.  

For dog owners looking for a hands-free dog toy that is both mentally and physically stimulating, interactive dog toys like the Ricochet Electronic Dog Toy by PetSafe may be a great solution.

But is this toy right for large dogs and worth your money? 

I have been testing the Ricochet Electronic Dog Toys with my two Mastiffs for the last few weeks.  What follows is our honest review and recommendation for you if you are considering purchasing this product for your large dog.

Disclaimer

While PetSafe sent me the Ricochet Electronic Dog Toy to test out for Junior and Sulley, they have not had a chance to preview my comments before publishing this full review for you here and on YouTube. As always, my product reviews are unbiased and fully transparent sharing the pros and the cons to help you make an informed buying decision if this is something you are considering for your dog. 

Ricochet Electronic Dog Toy – Product Details

Founded in 1998 with a mission to deliver life-changing products and experiences to a global community of pet parents, PetSafe is a company that offers an enormous line of pet products in every category – training, feeding, containment, travel, and… you guessed it, entertainment!

I have had the pleasure of partnering with PetSafe a few times here and on YouTube, and based on the good experiences I’ve had with their products, I was excited to test the Ricochet Electronic Dog Toy with my Mastiffs, Junior and Sulley. 

So what is the Ricochet Electronic Dog Toy?  

This interactive dog toy comes with two hard balls that squeak.  But they don’t squeak in the traditional sense – dog bites, toy squeaks. 

Interactive Dog Toys for Large Dogs Review - Mastiff with green ball - by Big Dog Mom

No, these talk to one another! 

When your dog plays with the first ball, the squeak is heard from the second ball.  When he starts to play with the second ball, the squeak comes from the first ball, and so on. 

The enticing squeaky sound bounces from one toy to the other as your dog plays with it stimulating your dog’s hunter instinct.  The paired toys have a range of 30 feet and stop squeaking after 60 minutes of inactivity. 

According to PetSafe, with the soft plastic top and durable hard plastic bottom, the Ricochet Electronic Dog Toy “will stand up to moderate chewers.”

While the product is made in China, PetSafe is headquartered in Knoxville, Tennessee. 

Pros

  • Dogs immediately reacted to the sounds and loved it
  • Fairly durable considering the powerful jaws of two mastiffs – i.e. they are still in one piece
  • Long-lasting – haven’t replaced the batteries in over 4 weeks with frequent use
  • Hands-free fun, paired toys have a range of 30 feet
  • Mentally stimulating for both dogs
  • Automatically turns off

Cons

  • Would prefer to see a blue and yellow (versus green) option – so there is a clear delineation for the dog
  • Plastic easily destroyed with powerful jaws and accidental biting
  • Dogs are conditioned to chew squeaky toys to get them to squeak making safe use of these toys challenging
  • Balls are heavy – 1.5 pounds
  • Soft plastic top easily ripped 
  • Hard plastic bottom easily scratched and dented 
  • Doesn’t turn off for 60 minutes of inactivity

VIDEO: Is This Interactive Dog Toy Worth the Money? Watch My Two Mastiffs Put It To the Test!

https://youtu.be/OvRj6es36Cc
The latest on Youtube:

Interactive Dog Toy Review

Every review on Big Dog Mom contains the sometimes brutal truth of our experience with a particular product.  

Keep in mind, that I have two adult (200lb+) Mastiffs and our results do not represent the vast majority of dog owners.  

That said, I do believe our experience is representative of what many large and giant breed dog owners will experience and therefore, I believe there is tremendous value in sharing it here and on YouTube

We spend far too much money on our dogs to waste money on products that simply aren’t built for the beating of a big dog. 

Quality

The Ricochet Electronic Dog Toys are constructed with a soft blue and green top screwed into a hard plastic gray bottom.  The inner core contains a white plastic holder for 3 AAA batteries. 

Overall, I felt the quality was good.  

Woman with two mastiffs showing an interactive dog toy box - Big Dog Mom
© 2024 Big Dog Mom, LLC

Initially, the top and bottom of the balls were screwed tightly together to protect the batteries, and the plastic on both ends was of good quality.  

With the batteries installed the balls were 1.5 pounds each, which was surprisingly heavy.  

I read some reviews that commented about the volume of the squeak being too low, but I felt it was plenty loud for my dogs. We could hear the balls downstairs when we were one floor up, which was the right volume.  Any louder and I think it would have been obnoxious.

These were my initial thoughts upon unboxing them. 

Unfortunately, due to the lack of durability covered in the next section, I deducted two points for quality since the two metrics are integral to one another.  

Durability -2 

The outside of the product packaging states, 

“This toy is for moderate chewers only.  Inspect this product often for chew damage. Discard the toy immediately if it has chew through damage.” 

Immediately after unboxing and installing the batteries, my dogs began to play with the balls. 

You could say they loved them a little too much!

Several times I had to confiscate the balls due to rough play.  The dogs weren’t chewing them, but their jaws chomping down on the balls as they carried them in their mouths was enough to, on multiple occasions, cause the top to get slightly unscrewed from the bottom.  

With the inner battery core being just underneath the outer covering, it worried me greatly that the top and bottom were not more secure together. 

Additionally, it didn’t take more than a few minutes of the boys picking up the balls in their mouths and chasing them for there to be visible damage to the integrity of the plastic, especially on the soft top.  

Once I saw how quickly these toys were being damaged, I ended up having to take them away and only allow them to play with them for a few minutes 3-4 days/week. 

After several weeks of on-and-off play and constant supervision, the balls have been retired due to significant damage to the soft plastic top.  

As a result, I had to give the PetSafe Ricochet Electronic Dog Toy a durability score of 2.  

My boys do not set out to destroy toys, they just do, unfortunately.  

While it did last for several weeks, which is better than many other toys, the Ricochet Dog Toy is simply not designed for giant breed dogs. 

Affordability – 2

When it comes to buying dog toys for my Mastiffs I prioritize durability (and quality) over price.  In other words, I am willing to, without hesitation, purchase a dog toy that I know will stand up to the beating of my dogs even if that means spending a little more. 

Let’s look at this argument mathematically…

If I purchase 2 cheap dog toys for $10 a piece I’ve spent $20.  Junior and Sulley inevitably destroy them on day 1 in their excitement over new dog toys.  What do I have left?  $0 and a fuller trash can.

If, however, I find 2 dog toys made specifically for large and giant breed dogs for $25 a piece, I’ve spent over twice as much at $50.  Junior and Sulley go bonkers over these new toys as well, trading them back and forth due to the inevitable FOMO that results when two toys are given to two dogs. In this case, what do I have left?  $0 and a basket full of stimulation and entertainment.

Interactive Dog Toys for Large Dogs Review - Mastiff with blue ball - by Big Dog Mom

Perhaps this is a big dog owner thing, but I never look at the price tag first when it comes to buying my dogs anything.  My first question is always, will it last?  

Given the short lifespan of the Ricochet Electronic Dog Toy in the Big Dog Mom house and its price of over $50, I am giving it an affordability score for large dog owners of 2. 

While we will get to my recommendations in a moment, for now, please keep in mind that I said for large dog owners.  

This toy, when not easily destroyed, is worth paying a little more for.  Just not when its lifespan is measured in minutes, not months. 

Drool Score – 4.5

You may be thinking, “Wow, she really didn’t like the Ricochet Electronic Dog Toy!” but that is not the case as shown in a drool score of 4.5.   

As I’ve stated all along, Junior and Sulley loved these interactive squeaky balls.  Just a little too much.

You will see in this video how much they loved them and why I had to take the balls away due to their over-exuberance.

The only reason I deducted half a point is because at times it seemed the dogs were a little confused by the squeaking.  

As I mentioned above, dogs are conditioned to chew squeaky toys to get them to squeak.  Because these toys were already squeaking, the boys seemed unsure of what to do with them.  

While Junior used his mouth to find the source of the squeaking, Sulley, who loves to catch and chase balls, just wanted it play with him.  

I rolled it a few times on the floor, but because of the weight of the ball, chose to prevent further damage to my furniture by allowing the dogs to move the balls on their own. 

And so, while the dogs absolutely loved these interactive dog toys, given the dichotomy of this toy and their conditioning to squeaky toys generally, I felt a score of 4.5 was more than fair for the Ricochet Electronic Dog Toy. 

Who is the Ricochet Electronic Dog Toy for?

The Ricochet Electronic Dog Toy is an interactive, hands-free dog toy that would be a great addition to many dog homes. 

If you have a medium-sized or large-breed dog that is not a chewer of toys and who enjoys ball games and squeaky toys, this is absolutely the toy for you!  Your dog will LOVE it!

And if you have a small (but mighty) breed dog like a French Bulldog, I think this would make a fine addition if your dog enjoys ball games. 

Keep in mind, that powerful jaws will inadvertently destroy this toy over time, so I would only recommend this to someone with a dog that has a soft mouth with toys. 

Who Should Not Buy the Ricochet Electronic Dog Toy?

I am sure it has become abundantly clear that I don’t recommend this interactive dog toy for large and giant breed dogs generally.  

Most are far too aggressive, overtly and accidentally, with dog toys to be reliably safe with this one.  

I would also say that very small dogs may not be a great fit either given the size and weight of the balls.  

Without seeing a side-by-side, I’m pretty sure one ball is the size of my father’s Bichon!  And I can assure you she would have no idea when faced with this towering squeak machine. 

Sorry, Dad.

Final Thoughts

If you are looking for a hands-free and interactive dog toy and your dog fits the criteria above, the Ricochet Electronic Dog Toy would be a wonderful gift. 

Mastiff looking at a green ball interactive dog toy - Big Dog Mom
© 2024 Big Dog Mom, LLC

My apprehension to give a wholehearted endorsement of this toy for large dogs is based purely on its concerning lack of suitability for large and giant breed dogs.

In homes where dog owners see a label of “hands-free” and, despite the warnings on the box, look the other way as their dog plays with it represents a risk I’m not willing to stand behind.  

It only took a couple of minutes for Junior to crunch hard enough to somehow cause the top and bottom of the ball to become halfway unscrewed – had he been successful he would have had free access to the battery-filled inner core. Had I not been standing there watching him, who knows what would have happened? 

That said, the Ricochet Electronic Dog Toy is made with quality construction and for many smaller, gentler dogs would hold up well over time. 

Unfortunately, just not in our home. 

Caveat Emptor

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