Can a Laser Pointer Hurt My Dog?

by Pamela Meadors
    Laser pointers emit photons of light onto a surface.

    Laser pointers emit photons of light onto a surface.

    Photodisc/Photodisc/Getty Images

    Anytime we choose a toy for our dogs, it should be safe for both their mental and physical health. Laser pointers certainly grab their attention, however eye safety is of the utmost importance. Beyond that, they may also cause frustration for Fido.

    Laser Pointer Play Can Be Very Frustrating

    Laser pointers project a beam of light onto a surface. While that beam should never be pointed directly at Fido's eyes, generally, pointers purchased at pet stores are safe and designed for companion animal use (provided all included instructions are followed). However, when a dog is "playing" by chasing after a ball, stick, or laser pointer, they are, in reality, chasing prey. Tangible objects can be caught, allowing Fido to work on his skills, but laser pointers are nothing more than light, and recent studies suggest perhaps, this type of play is not beneficial to your pup.

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    About the Author

    Pamela Meadors is a scientist, writer, avid traveler and animal advocate. In addition to earning a Bachelor of Science in biology, she has worked in the veterinary field at various clinics throughout the United States since 1997.

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