My pooch loves her Frisbee. No other fetch toy allows her to show off her aerial acrobatics in the same way.
If your dog loves to fetch or you are looking for a new way to play with your pup, then you should make a Frisbee your next purchase!
All told, we tested over 24 different Frisbees, throwing them hundreds of times until our arms were sore.
Seriously, check them out…
We observed their flight distance, flight time and durability. All to answer one single question…
Which Frisbee is best for your dog?
Want the answer? Read on!
- What is a dog Frisbee?
- Is a Frisbee the right toy for your dog?
- Types of dog Frisbees: Soft vs Hard
- Which dog Frisbee was best?
- Best hard plastic dog Frisbee
- Best soft nylon dog Frisbee
- Best rubber dog Frisbee
- Best dog Frisbee that floats in water
What is a dog Frisbee?
A dog Frisbee is a flat, disc-shaped toy. It is thrown with a flick of the wrist, and instead of “falling through the air” the way a thrown ball does, it glides through the air.
Use a Frisbee the same way you would any other fetch toy – you throw it, and your dog brings it back.
But it’s the gliding movement that makes a Frisbee a unique fetch toy. If thrown correctly, your dog can chase the Frisbee, leap, and grab it mid-air.
What a leap!
Now, you may be wondering:
Why does your dog need a special Frisbee? Why won’t a regular throwing disc do?
Well, unlike you and me, dogs don’t have hands. They catch with their mouths. Because of this, Frisbees designed with dogs in mind are easier to grip, pick up off flat surfaces and will not crack your dog’s teeth.
Many dog Frisbees are made with durability in mind. Your dog’s toothy mouth is capable of dishing out some serious wear and tear. While that cheap plastic Frisbee from Walmart may look similar, it can quickly break into sharp plastic pieces that could injure your dog.
You get a lot more mileage out of a quality dog Frisbee that has been designed with your dog’s mouth in mind.
You might also hear a dog Frisbee referred to as…
- Dog disc
- Throwing disc
- Flying disc
In this guide, I simply refer to them as a dog Frisbee – it’s what I’ve always called them.
Is a Frisbee the right toy for your dog?
Frisbees are most suitable for medium to large-sized dogs – these dogs have no issue chasing down and grabbing a Frisbee mid-air.
Some breeds love fetching Frisbees more than others, especially those that are energetic, lean, weigh less than 50 pounds and have a passion for retrieving.
For competitions, the following breeds typically participate in competitive disc dog sports…
- American Pit Bull Terrier
- Australian Cattle Dog
- Australian Shepherd
- Belgian Malinois
- Border Collie
- Bull Terrier
- English Whippet
- Golden Retriever
- Labrador Retriever
However, just because your dog isn’t on that list doesn’t mean your dog won’t enjoy playing fetch with a Frisbee. My neighbor’s Jack Russell Terrier is addicted to Frisbees. If his owner’s arm were up to it, he would chase one down all day.
Truth be told, dogs of all sizes have fun with Frisbees.
From hulking Old English Sheepdogs…
To miniature breeds, like the Russian Toy…
Admittedly, smaller breeds like Chihuahuas and Dachshunds are less likely to leap and catch a Frisbee. Unless you do soft, short throws, the disc will land long before your tiny pooch catches up with it.
But even so, that doesn’t make a Frisbee less suitable – some dogs will only play fetch with a Frisbee. We spoke to two owners who mentioned that while their dogs refused to play fetch with balls, they would happily fetch a Frisbee.
One said that it was the unusual flight path that a Frisbee makes as it glides through the air that captured his dog’s attention.
If you play fetch in the snow, then a Frisbee makes a much better fetch toy than a ball. Because of its large, flat size, it remains on top of the snow when it lands, instead of sinking like a tennis ball.
However, when it comes to water, not all Frisbees perform the same. While some float, others sink like a rock – and you won’t be able to tell which just by looking at them.
If you want to play Frisbee near a lake or at the beach, double-check that the Frisbee you are buying floats first because, unlike balls, not all Frisbees do.
It is worth mentioning that small, flat-faced breeds, such as Pugs, have much more difficulty lifting the Frisbee if it lands on a flat surface. This problem is solved to some extent by playing on grass. The grass lifts the Frisbee up, allowing your flat-faced dog to get his jaw around it.
Before you rush out and buy your dog a Frisbee, you also need to consider your dog’s health. Playing Frisbee involves a lot of leaping and landing. If your dog has joint or hip problems, a Frisbee may not be the right toy for your dog – when in doubt, ask your vet!
Types of dog Frisbees: Soft vs Hard
While out shopping, you’ll find two different types of Frisbees, each with pros and cons…
1. Soft dog Frisbees
If you are simply looking for a Frisbee to toss around your yard, a soft Frisbee should be your first choice.
Soft Frisbees are generally made from rubber, foam or nylon fabric and are designed to be easily thrown by beginners and experts alike.
Now when I say soft, I don’t mean pillow soft. If a fabric or rubber Frisbee hits you at full speed, it will still pack a wallop. Instead, I mean that these Frisbees can flex and bend and are considerably more floppy than a rigid plastic disc.
Soft Frisbees won’t glide as far as hard Frisbees. Rubber Frisbees are heavier and fall faster, while fabric Frisbees are less aerodynamic – you can’t expect the same looooooong arcing throws that can only be experienced with a hard plastic disc.
However, for most of you, this won’t be an issue at all. Because soft Frisbees have a major benefit over hard ones…
Because soft Frisbees have some give when bitten, they are considerably more durable than hard Frisbees. In fact, this exact feature is why I recommend soft Frisbees for most people – they last longer!
- More durable
- Commonly available
- Less accurate
- More difficult to throw long distances
- Can show drool marks
Best for: The casual throw at your local dog park
2. Hard dog Frisbees
A lightweight plastic Frisbee can be thrown farther, more accurately and float better than a Frisbee made from any other material. This quality makes plastic Frisbees the number one choice for those who compete in professional disc dog tournaments.
The downside? Plastic Frisbees wear out quicker. If your dog has a strong bite, you might only get 40 or so throws before it breaks. This is why those who compete in disc dog tournaments have dozens of Frisbees on hand at any given time. Some dog trainers go through 500 in a single year!
It is also important to note that dogs with a strong jaw can easily pierce or leave teeth marks on a plastic disc. This can lead to sharp shards sticking out. When thrown at full speed, these sharp edges can be like throwing a circular saw blade at your dog, resulting in injury.
Plastic discs should be regularly inspected and disposed of once worn.
If you are like me and just want a single Frisbee to toss around at the local dog park, skip the plastic.
However, if accuracy and long-distance throwing are important to you, then check out Frisbees that are labeled as puncture-resistant or bite-resistant. Made from a heavier plastic, these Frisbees travel and fall faster, but you’ll get a lot more play before they need replacing.
- Easier to throw with accuracy
- Can be thrown farther
- Glide longer
- Many professional brands can only be found online
- If not regularly inspected, can cause injury
- Need replacing regularly
Best for: Those who take dog games seriously
Which dog Frisbee was best?
I’m going to level with you:
There isn’t a single Frisbee that is best for all dogs. The ideal Frisbee for your dog entirely depends on your needs.
For example, it doesn’t matter how good the best plastic Frisbee is if you want a soft one for throwing around your yard.
So today, I cover four different Frisbees, each great in their own way.
1. Best hard plastic dog Frisbee
Out of all the Frisbees we reviewed, the Hyperflite Jawz was the most fun to throw. With practice, I could accurately throw it short and fast or in a beautiful, long arc. No matter where my dog was, I could set it up so that she could easily grab it out of the air – consistent throws all day long.
And, you’ll look like a pro too…
In fact, when I threw the Hyperflite Jawz at my local dog park, I had two dog owners come up and ask which Frisbee I was using and where they could buy one. It made me self-conscious to realize that my dog and I were apparently putting on a show.
Given that this is a competition-grade disc and that it’s used in disc dog games, this accuracy was expected.
But when compared to the soft nylon and rubber discs, the difference was day and night. After throwing the Hyperflite Jawz, other discs felt clunky and fell too fast.
To get the most out of this disc, you really want to use it in a wide, open field – where you’ll be impressed with just how far you can actually throw it.
Unlike cheaper competition discs, this one is designed with durability in mind. Hyperflite advertises this Frisbee as being puncture-resistant. To achieve this, a heavier plastic is used.
This extra weight makes the Frisbee considerably faster than your standard plastic Frisbee. It definitely takes some getting used to. You might find yourself needing to throw softer to accommodate this.
But it’s not all bad news! This extra weight allowed for consistent throws, even on windy days!
The downside is that the Hyperflite Jawz doesn’t float in water. If you throw this into a lake or at the beach, it will sink before your dog can swim over to it.
I’d also add that because this Frisbee only comes in a single size and is quite rigid, small dogs can have issues dragging it back to you.
But if you want a Frisbee that is as much fun to throw as it is for your dog to catch, this should be your top pick!
2. Best soft nylon dog Frisbee
I’ll be straight up, compared to some of the other Frisbees we tested, the Flippy Flopper looks a little plain. It’s little more than nylon stretched over a rubber ring.
But it’s this simple design that made this the best nylon Frisbee that we tested – there isn’t much that can go wrong with it.
When thrown, the nylon fabric expands and looks more like a dome than a Frisbee. Combined with its light weight, we were able to get some serious float time when thrown correctly – more than long enough for our dogs to leap up and catch it.
We were impressed with just how well the Flippy Flopper held up to our toothy testers. The nylon is smooth and doesn’t provide any opportunity to catch and fray on a particularly sharp tooth.
But where the Flippy Flopper really stands out is its price. This thing is darn affordable – you can buy two or even three for the same price as other Frisbees we tested.
Now, there were a couple of drawbacks.
First, due to just how light this Frisbee is, we found that it was affected by strong winds. While we could get around this somewhat by throwing with the wind, it didn’t glide as well as it did on a still day – if you live in a windy area, consider a heavier disc.
Next, the Flippy Floppy is only available in the standard size of 9-inches wide. There is no 7-inch option for smaller dogs.
However, this wasn’t as big an issue to small dogs compared to the rigid Frisbees we tested. Because this soft Frisbee bends and flexes, even small dogs could drag it back without too much difficulty.
Funny enough, my neighbor actually uses the Flippy Floppy as his go-to dog Frisbee. I learned this when he asked why I had 20+ Frisbees scattered across my front lawn. He has been buying them for his Kelpie since 2013 and claims he gets about a year of use before it’s too torn up to fly.
He added that because it doesn’t fly as far as harder discs, it makes the Flippy Floppy Frisbee perfect for tossing around your yard – you don’t have to worry about breaking a window.
It’s also suitable for throwing near water. If the Flippy Flopper lands in water, it floats on the surface until your dog swims out and retrieves it.
If you want a soft, lightweight Frisbee for your dog, it doesn’t get any better than this!
3. Best rubber dog Frisbee
This is probably the winner you expected, right? I mean, you can’t go dog Frisbee shopping without crossing paths with the Kong Flyer – it’s everywhere!
There is a good reason for this. It’s just a darn good all-around Frisbee, and unless you have specific needs, there is little reason to choose another Frisbee over this.
The Kong Flyer is made right here in the USA. The soft, durable rubber held up well to our dog’s teeth while its ability to flex made it easy for dogs to pick up off the ground.
Despite being made from a heavy rubber, the Kong Flyer glides surprisingly well. In fact, out of all the rubber Frisbees we tested, we were able to throw this one the farthest – the shape appears to be slightly more aerodynamic than its competitors.
If you have a small pooch who wants to play Frisbee too, you’ll be pleased to note that the Kong Flyer is available in two sizes…
The only real downside to the Kong Flyer is that it doesn’t float. If you toss this Frisbee into water, it will sink like a stone, and you’ll have to fish it out yourself.
Let’s just say there is a reason the Kong Flyer is so popular… There is very little not to like about it.
4. Best dog Frisbee that floats on water
At 12 inches, it was one of the largest dog Frisbees we reviewed. The large surface area and thick foam ring keep this Frisbee floating on top of even choppy water at the beach.
It’s these two features that make it easy for your dog to locate in the water. There is no missing that gigantic floating ring. No more swimming around aimlessly as your dog tries to guess where the Frisbee landed.
While it is still capable of flying a good distance, it pales in comparison to the other Frisbees on this list. It’s for this reason that I only recommend the hydroplane as a water toy rather than an everyday Frisbee.
I also appreciated that the bright colors made the Frisbee easy-to-see. On the few times that my pooch wasn’t paying attention and I threw it into the water, I had no problems locating it in the waves.
Interestingly, I was able to throw the Frisbee farther once it was wet.
As an added bonus, your dog will look adorably goofy when his head appears in the middle of the ring.
If your dog loves to play in the water, there is no need to look past this Frisbee.
The dog Frisbees that didn’t make the cut
Not every Frisbee can be a winner. While each of the following Frisbees had something going for them, they were beaten in one way or another by our top picks.
Here are the dog Frisbees that didn’t make the cut.
The Kurgo Tossing Disc isn’t really a Frisbee at all. It can only be thrown a short distance. However, if your dog keeps eating the middle of your Frisbee, then it may be worth checking out. It also floats well.
While we were able to throw the Chuckit! Paraflight a great distance, neither size flew in a straight path. If distance is important or you want a heavier soft disc for throwing in strong winds, then this may be worth checking out. We passed it over because we noticed fraying on the edges after our week-long testing period. The Chuckit! Zipflight was similar but didn’t fly as far.
There really isn’t anything wrong with the Ruffwear Hover Craft. It was plain and more durable than the Chuckit! Paraflight above. However, it’s also one of the most expensive Frisbees around. You can buy two or three of our top picks for the same price!
West Paw is being generous when they call their Dash Frisbee an actual Frisbee. It just doesn’t fly well at all. In their attempt to make a heavy-duty Frisbee, they increased the weight to such a point that it’s almost too heavy to be a flying disc – it flies like a brick. It falls short, and it falls hard.
Unlike their monstrosity above, the West Paw Zisc was a very capable Frisbee. It gave the Kong Flyer a good run for its money. However, being more expensive and unable to fly as well meant that we had to pass it up.
The Booda Tail-Spin is a bit of a sad story. I purchased one years ago and loved it. However, the current version appears to be made from poor-quality materials. This was the only disc to tear during our review.
The oversized Nerf Dog Nylon Flyer was too big for most breeds, wobbled when thrown and was easily affected by light wind.
Wham-O also makes a popular competition Frisbee. The Fastback Frisbee is hugely popular in professional disc dog tournaments. Its advantage for competitive throwing is also its drawback for the casual Frisbee game. Its light weight makes accurate throwing a breeze but also makes it a fragile choice. Unfortunately, this Frisbee has a very limited lifespan.
The SodaPup Dog Frisbee comes in the shape of a bottle top. While we liked the fact that it was made from a non-toxic, biodegradable, FDA-approved material, it didn’t fly as well as the Kong.
Outward Hound’s Soft Fetch Flyer neither flew as well nor was as durable as our top nylon fabric pick.
The StarMark Easy Glider was made from a soft, durable foam. It doesn’t fly well and is easily affected by the wind.
We read many positive reviews about Aerobie’s Dogobie Disc. At 8 inches, it’s a little on the small side and didn’t fly as far as similar Frisbees, but it has a great price.
The TUFFY Ultimate Flyer was a durable option for a soft Frisbee. However, we found the squeaker encouraged dogs to use it as a chew toy. Our testers often wouldn’t return it after they heard the squeak.
The myth of the indestructible dog Frisbee
Is your dog a super chewer capable of tearing his way through any dog toy in seconds? Then, you may be on the hunt for an unbreakable Frisbee.
I hate to break it to you:
There is no such thing as an indestructible dog Frisbee.
Yep, if your dog is a chewer or has an incredibly strong bite, he will make short work of even the most heavy-duty Frisbee.
A Frisbee should be used as a fetch toy only. One that is thrown and returned.
You see, Frisbees were designed with throwing and catching in mind. Chewing? Not so much. While some of the Frisbees we reviewed were heavy-duty, they won’t last long if used as a dedicated chew toy.
Not only that, but wear can really affect the performance of your Frisbee. Chew marks and torn seams can stop the Frisbee from gliding altogether.
The problem is that in order to glide through the air, a Frisbee needs to be lightweight and thin.
A few brands we reviewed, such as Kong, West Paw and Soda Pup, all sell heavy-duty Frisbees. In their attempt to create a dog-proof Frisbee that can hold up to rough play, they made their Frisbees from thick, heavy rubber.
The result is that these heavy-duty discs fall short and fast – they don’t fly through the air with the same gliding motion you expect from a lightweight Frisbee. In fact, one particular “dog Frisbee” flew so poorly that it would be better referred to as a rock than a Frisbee.
However, even the toughest Frisbee we tested received complaints that a dog chewed his way through it. I have a suspicion that these owners let their dog gnaw on their Frisbee all day.
All the Frisbees we tested, besides one, held up to regular use, even from strong biters.
Which leads me to toy care. Every dog toy can break when not used correctly. A Frisbee is a fetch toy. It should only be used under supervision when playing fetch.
When I say correct use, I mean not letting your dog take off with the Frisbee, not letting him chew on it once he’s caught it, and not playing tug-of-war when he returns it.
When the game is over, you should put the Frisbee away and give your dog his go-to chew toy instead – doing so will extend the life of your Frisbee.
If you have made it this far, congratulations! You now know which Frisbee is ideal for your dog.
A recap of our results…
The best Frisbees we tested:
- Hyper Pet Flippy Flopper – Backyard throwing
- Hyperflite Jawz – Long distance throwing
- Kong Flyer – Yard and park play
- Ruffwear Hydro Plane – Water play (it floats!)
Which Frisbee do you use to play with your pooch? Let me know in the comments below!