Not everyone can be a stay at home dog owner. Life gets busy and our schedules are always full. Some days we just don’t have the time to walk half a marathon to prevent boredom in dogs.
Unfortunantly, without the appropriate mental and physical stimulation our furry friends can become restless and destructive. To help busy owners combat boredom in dogs, we’ve compiled a short list of games, exercises and mental stimulation activities you can enjoy with your pupper.
Find it (nose work)
Find it is a nose work game using treats, aimed at providing mental stimulation. To play, ask Fido to sit. You may need to hold his collar/lead in the beginning. When starting out, place the treat on the ground in view. Say ‘find it’ and let Fido go. Praise when he finds and eats the treat. Call him back and repeat.
As Fido starts to understand the game, you can make it harder. Hide the treat behind furniture, under tables, etc. and stop allowing him to watch where you hide it. This will encourage him to use his nose.
This game is perfect when you’re busy. You can just throw the treat in random directions around the house or yard.
Hide and Seek
Hide and seek is another great game. Especially for puppies who run wild. This game encourages both physical and mental stimulation. Ask Fido for a sit-stay. Move to another room and hide in a basic spot. Call Fido. Once he finds you, reward with a treat, to or even praise.
Ask Fido to sit-stay, in the room he found you in and repeat. Hide in harder places as Fido learns the game.
Fetch is an all time classic. It’s so simple and can be played nearly anywhere, anytime. To make fetch more challenging and stimulating, you can set up an obstacle course or simply throw the toy in a hard (but not impossible) place for Fido to get it.
Toys that dispense treats, puzzle toys and Kong’s are a big hit for mental stimulation. They make Fido work for their snack and are amazing when Fido is left home alone. They give our puppers something to think about and something to work toward.
Know of some activities we’ve left out? We’d love to hear what you and your furbabies love to play on those busy days!