Keeping your dog entertained can be a challenge. And trying to come up with new ways to keep your dog busy can be more exhausting than actually getting up and doing it.
To help you out, Sweetie has put together a list of simple ways to keep your dog busy because bored dogs get into trouble.!
We're their primary source of entertainment, so if we don't give them the stuff to do they'll come up with activities of their own — and that's when we end up with chewed up shoes, holes in gardens and many more.
By playing with your dog a few times a day, can decrease the likelihood of them developing destructive habits such as excessive barking or chewing.
We have chosen a few games that combine mental stimulation, exercise and helps them work on their problem-solving skills.
But it all starts by training your dog with a Clicker and Dog treats.
When it comes to dog training, (for any reason, may it be obedience or play) a clicker is your best partner in crime! It's a little key-ring style with a lever that makes a noise when you press down on it and is used to mark the exact moment your dog performs the desired behaviour. It's an easy way to make sure you're letting your dog know precisely when he's doing the right thing.
Nose work games are one of the easiest ways to tire out your dog.
When you teach your dog some basic nose work games such as 'find the treats' you're mentally tiring them out and helping them hone in on some of their natural skills.
Grab some treats from your Dog treat Bag and have your dog watch as you place them around the room. Give your dog the cue to "find the treats" and encourage your dog to pick them up, remembering to praise them every time they find one.
After your confident that your dog understands what "find the treats" means you can make it a bit more challenging. Have them stay in another room as you hide the treats, and start hiding them in spots they have to sniff out such as under a rug.
Play the Shell Game
The shell game is a simple problem-solving game for dogs like find the treats, but with a notch of difficulty. To play the shell game with your dog, let your dog watch as you place a treat under one of three cups. You then shuffle the cups around and encourage them to 'find the treat.' The shell game gives your dog plenty of mental stimulation and helps them work on their problem-solving skills.
Chore games. Teach Your Dog to Help with Chores
Dogs love having a job to do, even if it's something as simple as fetching you your slippers. You can make them feel even more useful by teaching them the names of some items you wouldn't mind having retrieved.
If you want to impress all of your friends teach your dog to fetch you something from the fridge. When training your dog to open the fridge, tie a towel around the handle, so it's easy for them to pull open the door. And if you're feeling like a superstar, you can teach your dog to help out with daily chores.
Teach Your Dog the Names of Their Toys
Teach your dogs the names of their toys and make some fun games out of it. At a later stage, you can even teach them to clean up their toys after playtime!
Start by playing with one specific toy and giving it a name while you do. After some practice & praise, your dog will assign that verbal name with the chosen toy once your dog has learned that specific toys name you can test their skills by seeing if they can pick it out among their other toys.
As mentioned in our Sweetie Paw-some facts, dogs can learn hundreds of words. Start teaching your dog the names of his toys and play a game of 'Go find pink bear' with them.
Teach Your Dog to "Go Find" Their Toys
Once your dog knows the names of some of their toys teach them the "go find it" game. Have your dog's toys in a pile or container and tell them to "go find" their favourite toy. As your dog gets better at this game, you can make it more challenging by increasing the number of toys they have to sift through.
Keep it fun for them by rewarding them handsomely with a treat when they succeed. This game will give your dog a great mental workout.
Eventually, Teach Your Dog to Clean Up His Toys
If you keep your dog's toy in a container, you can teach them to put their toys away. I know it sounds weird to teach your dog to clean up after themselves, but it's a lot of fun. Teaching your dog new skills boosts their confidence, and it's a great way to give them more mental stimulation.
If your dog already knows "drop it" have them pick up a toy and give them their drop it commands once they're standing over the container. Praise your pup like crazy, then repeat. Eventually, with consistency, you'll have a dog that will be able to clean up after himself.
Now that's a dream come true for many pa(w)rents around the world!