That's right, I went with the ChuckIt!
Good size (they're all pretty much the same size anyway, unless you get "mini" or "monster" tennis balls), good heft, fantastic bounce.
When I got home from the store, Elka may have sensed something was afoot. She followed me back and forth from the doorway to the kitchen (okay, she normally does this anyway), but was more interested than usual in what I was unpacking. Normally, she gives this process a cursory glance, and then comes to terms with the fact that I'm not, say, going to open that new block of cheese and toss it into her bowl. She still kept her nose out of the grocery bags, but stood and watched me. And then really watched me, when I took out the Chuckit! package and went to take the "before" picture. Quivering in anticipation, shall we say?
I surrendered one of the balls, which she stood with for a moment, holding it in her mouth, before leaving the kitchen for the living room, which is apparently the prime ball chewing environment of the household. Normally, Elka will drop the ball a few times, to watch it bounce and pounce after it, before settling in to chew. Not this time. With the Chuckit!, it was as though the difference in rubber compelled her to chew immediately.
And this time, my friends, I kept an eye on the time. It was 11:25 when I gave Elka her Chuckit! She chewed it, and eventually brought it to me at the couch, where I threw it (lightly, as we were inside), she chased after it, brought it back, chewed it. The fuzz on it got saturated with DoberSpit, not a frequent occurrence, but such that if it rolled from Elka's jaws and hit the floor, it didn't even really bounce anymore, it was so heavy. Also, she tried her darndest to peel the fuzz off (a behavior I discourage when I witness it), but it actually didn't really work. The fuzz was too short, and tightly woven.
All in all, Elka had the ChuckIt! from 11:25 until 12:10 before it suddenly reached its tipping point and came apart and I had to take it away from her.
So, nearly forty five minutes of extremely focused abuse. Not bad, Chuckit! The price at Wal Mart wasn't so bad either, though the Amazon price is greater, for some reason. Normally they're somewhat comparable. I still don't think I'll ever buy the Chuckit! ball flinger, simply for lack of space, but the ball itself is a good product. I think, of the seven we've tried, Chuckit! is in the lead so far. It didn't last the hour that the Tractor Supply Company tennis ball did, but Elka was clearly trying to specifically destroy the Chuckit! She had her game face on.