Four Paws, Inc. – Beware Their Pimple Ball – It Can Kill/Grossly Maim Your Dog

Four Paws, Inc. makes a “Pimple Ball” for dogs. Due to a “manufacturing flaw,” when a dog chews on the ball a vacuum is created inside, the vacuum sucks the dog’s tongue into the ball through a hole (there were supposed to be two holes, thus negating the possibility of a vacuum) and, given the nature of a vacuum, the ball cannot be removed from the dog’s tongue, except surgically. The result is either euthanasia or removal of the dog’s tongue. This blog post describes the horrible consequences–with pictures and video–of this “manufacturing flaw.” And, I bet I don’t even have to research it…the ball is most likely made in, yeah where else, China!

Here’s what Four Paws says about their company:


Since 1970, Four Paws has been committed to manufacturing the highest quality pet products available on the market. We are equally committed to providing the finest customer service in the industry. Every product is tested for safety and usability for both owner and pet. Our goal is both customer and pet satisfaction and enjoyment. Our employees provide outstanding customer service and will ensure that you and your pet remain happy and satisfied customers. Four Paws is a proud member of the following Pet Industry Trade Associations: APPMA, WWPSA, PIJAC, PIDA

Uh-huh… “…Every product is tested for safety and usability…” Sure.

Only good news is the pimple ball has apparently been recalled by the manufacturer. Link here

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9 Responses to Four Paws, Inc. – Beware Their Pimple Ball – It Can Kill/Grossly Maim Your Dog

  1. Thanks for bringing this to light George. Brutal!!

  2. Suz at Large says:

    I read the blog posts and comments last week. Which led me to check all my pup’s chew toys for the same problem: a hole which if blocked by the pup’s tongue, will create a vacuum because there’s no other air outlet in the toy.

    I found one toy (shaped more like a jack, not a ball) which had two arms with such holes and no other air outlet/inlet and though I think that Jasper’s too little to be able to block them up with his tongue I “retired” that one from his collection.

    And I learned something that I don’t think would occur to me if such a dire emergency happens: if the toy is stuck on the dog’s tongue with a vacuum seal and you can’t pull it off, somehow cut or pierce a hole in the toy to break the vacuum. That may then allow you to get the toy off, but even if not it will at least reduce the pressure pulling on the tongue – which is what caused the awful injury to that poor dog.

  3. georgeindenver says:

    I’m looking at myself in the mirror, saying “Duh.” Why didn’t I think of that…punching another hole in the ball to relieve the vacuum.

    Thanks, Suz.

  4. LynnP says:

    I have this ball, have been through 3-4 of them as a matter of fact. Heard the horror story, headed home that day to throw away the two I have currently.

    Guess what – the ball has two holes.

    Not sure what the owner’s motivation is, but I have a sinking feeling that she’s trying to get a better “offer” from Four paws’ insurance company. She specifically says that her vet told her that if the ball had two holes, this wouldn’t have happened.

    Felt the need to set the story straight, since she massaged it somewhat.

    Don’t get me wrong – what happened is horrible, and is a lesson to not leave your dog unattended with any toy.

  5. georgeindenver says:

    Thanks, Lynn

    The “Chai” story, which I linked on my post, is instructive–to put your argument in perspective–if for only the fact the company admitted to a “manufacturing flaw,” and did agree to pick up some of the costs of treatment for Chai.

    In this day and age, with this “litigious” society, there is always, at the back of one’s mind, the suspicion that motivation is colored by greed. I, personally, do not believe that is the case here. I hope I’m right.


  6. bruce says:

    from what i read and understand she is only looking for help the vets bills and something for extended care. which is in reason. i have warned all of my friends to either toss the toys or drill a second hole. it angers me that dogs are listed as property and not acknowledged as living beings, this case aside until we can push for better rights for our animals they will continue to be treated as little more then a sofa.

  7. chris says:

    if you want a good toy and one that will last forever try the kong ball or pyramid i have 2 labrador retrievers, one is 7 and the other 3, they can chew a baseball apart in a matter of minutes and love chewing rocks, i got them a kong when they were pups and they just love them and they have also lasted 7 years, i would never buy anything else, my cousin told me about the kong when she first got her 2 german shephards and she has never bought anything else they also love them

  8. The Kong is a great toy and it has two generous sized holes to prevent the vacuum problem. It comes in different sizes as well as chewing resistance.

    Any toy can become old and chunks can break off and cause harm when swallowed so with time I’d also replace the older Kongs.

    In my opinion give the Four Paws, Inc. company some credit for recalling and replacing the defective product as soon as they knew about it and for helping those whose pets were injured.

  9. june lee says:

    WARNING: CUZ almost killed my great dane puppy. Please check out the following site:
    On November 22, 2010, Bella, my almost 8 months puppy broke the squeaker of her new toy large Good Cuz and thus a hole was created. This hole turned out to be a powerful vacum and sucked up Bella’s tongue into the small hole. What the Cuz did to my Bella was exactly the same as the Pimple Ball did to Chai. Fortunately, Bella’s tongue is saved but poor Chai’s has been amputated. This whole incident was so distressful which I would not like to repeat it. I have already report the incident to the JW Pet company to request a recall of this dangerous toy from the market. IF THERE IS ALREADY A HOLE IN YOUR CUZ, PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE THROW IT ALWAY IMMEDIATELY.

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