If I’m walking my dog or letting her run in the dog park, it’s not unusual for us to see a stray tennis ball and play an impromptu game of fetch.
But as the 4th of July nears, news stations like KIRO 7 are warning pup parents of an explosive threat: tennis ball bombs. Though illegal, these homemade devices are set off like firecrackers. And if one goes astray, undetonated devices can pose serious threats to fetch-loving dogs.
Luckily, they’re easy to spot as long as dog owners are diligent. “A tennis ball bomb is very easy to identify,” said a police spokesman in the KIRO 7 story. “It is a real tennis ball that has some sort of fuse sticking out of it. The tennis ball could also be completely wrapped in duct tape with a fuse sticking out.”
Unfortunately, accidents have happened to unwilling dogs and their owners. According to the article, a set of the explosives was found by a geocacher this year in Everett, Washington. And in 2000, a fatal accident occurred when a dog fetched a bomb ball that exploded in Portland, Oregon.