Some folks are lucky to work in pet-friendly offices (Brit + Co is one!), but otherwise, one of the toughest parts about dog ownership is leaving your furry friend home alone while you’re at work. Cats may be happy with hours of quiet napping, but loyal dogs are just dying for you to get home and play with them. And as many of us know firsthand, this alone time often leads to puppy mischief of the “destroyed shoes” variety. So how can you keep Fido entertained while you’re out taking care of business? Enter iFetch.

iFetch is simply a tennis ball machine for man’s best friend — ball goes in, ball launches out, dog gets his exercise. All you have to do is train your dog to drop the ball in from behind the machine. You don’t even need a big backyard either, because it has three launch distances, from 10 feet to 30 feet. (Just aim it away from your antique glass collection ;) The batteries keep the fun going for around 30 hours too, so even the most hyperactive dog breeds will be tired out by the time you get home.

iFetch 4

One caveat is that the iFetch only takes 1.5” tennis balls, so the miniature size makes this toy more appropriate for smaller dogs. Large dog owners made their voices heard, and now the iFetch Too is coming by the end of 2015, thanks to a successful Kickstarter campaign. It will throw standard-size tennis balls up to 40 feet. It will even have textured rubber treads to handle all that big dog slobber.

iFetch 2

Obviously you should be getting plenty of face time and exercise *with* your dog, so as long as the iFetch isn’t used as an excuse for skipping important bonding time with your pooch, we think it’s a great toy for when you’re out of the house. Order the original iFetch for small dogs for $115, and keep your eye out for the iFetch Too.

How do you make sure your dog stays active, but out of trouble when you’re away from home? Share your training tips in the comments!