Playtime With Your Dog
Are you looking for new and interesting games to play with your dog? Playing with your dog is fun, and it can also contribute to your dog’s health and enrichment. Finding games that he is interested and engaged in will make playtime a positive and constructive time.
Here are some popular playtime suggestions you and your dog may enjoy:
Hide the Treat
Explore just how powerful your dog's sense of smell is by hiding a treat in a place in your house that's difficult to get to. Leave a trail of scent by rubbing the treat on a few spots along the way. You can also buy toys that let you put a treat inside and prompt your dog to figure out how to get it out. This problem-solving task is good for stimulating your dog's mind.
Chase the "Prey"
Dogs have a natural drive for chasing prey, so bring this out by tying a toy or stuffed animal to a stick. Drag it slowly and stop occasionally, rather than waving it around quickly. The slow pursuit helps your dog learn to focus.
Hula Hoop Leaping
Champion dogs can leap through hoops, and your dog can too. Just find a hula hoop and encourage him to jump through by throwing a treat through the opening. Once he gets the hang of it, reward him with praise and affection.
Fetch is a great way to tire out a dog full of energy, while giving him exercise and fulfilling his natural instinct to run, run, run. Retrievers are naturals at fetch, but any dog can learn.
When you're playing with your dog in the backyard, try setting up an obstacle course for him. Put out boxes for him to jump over or set out a few cones. Encourage him to weave between them as he runs by, having him follow you and going through the motions - slowly at first, and then more quickly.
Hopefully these suggestions will help keep playtime with your dog fun and interesting.