This week’s guest post is from Carl Turner. Carl is a professional dog trainer and a freelance writer from Los Angeles, California
Whether it’s a rainy day, snowy day, or you’re just too busy working from home, there are many different ways you can play with your dog at home to keep him or her happy and healthy!
It’s important to keep your dog active, and maintain an exciting lifestyle. If your dog stays indoors often, then you’ll want to make sure to try a few of these tricks to keeping them active and entertained.
Hide & Seek
Hide and seek is not only a fun game to play with kids, but dogs will love it too! If you can teach your dog how to play hide and seek then you can have fun indoors for hours! This game can easily be played by first throwing your dog’s favorite toy, then running and hiding. When they come to return the toy and discover that you’re not there, they will begin looking for you.
Try to make your hiding spots easy the first few times, then increase the difficulty as they catch on to the game. This will challenge your dog, while also giving them the exercise they need by running around the house. You’ll also be getting in some exercise time, too!
Indoor Obstacle Course
Even if you don’t have all the fancy equipment for an agility course, you can create your own by using things around the house. An indoor obstacle course will challenge your dog to think and will also give him or her the exercise they need while staying indoors.
Use items, such as pillows, to create high obstacles they have to jump over. A blanket draped over the couch, or chair is an easy way to create a tunnel. They can jump through a hula hoop, or zig zag around small traffic cones for a more difficult course. Always make sure to reward your dog once they complete a course, so they will be encouraged for the next challenge.
If you have friends or family members who also have pets, then scheduling a puppy play date is a perfect way to keep your dog entertained at home. This is also a great way for you to take some time to run errands, and do things you can’t do while with your dog.
Your dog will love the companionship of another dog, and you’ll have some time to yourself without feeling guilty for leaving him or her home alone. A play date will let your dog get the exercise they need, while also improving social skills.
Scavenging can be a fun way for your dog to play indoors. Hide treats, or bits of his or her dog food, in unique places around the house. Start off with obvious places, such as the middle of the floor, where they will easily find it. Once they start catching on to the game, start placing the treats in harder to find places around the house. This will encourage your dog to use their brain, and they’ll have plenty of fun trying to find the next hiding spot.
If you don’t want to use food or treats, you can pick one of their dog toys to hide instead. There are plenty of healthy, organic dog treats on the market, but if those are too expensive, another alternative to try are carrots and green beans! Your dog will love these, and they’re healthy for them!
Dogs need attention and entertainment, and if they are stuck in the house all day long with nothing to do, then they might start acting out, or getting themselves into trouble. If a dog is misbehaving, it might not be because they are upset or mad, but they could be restless and bored and they’re just trying to find a way to stay entertained.
Just like humans, dogs need something to do every now and then, and it’s easy to play with your dog at home even if you can’t let them outside all the time. These simple ways to play with your dog will keep them happy and healthy, and out of trouble!
Carl Turner is a professional dog trainer and a freelance writer from Los Angeles, California. Combining his passion for writing with his expertise in canine care and training, he has published a number of informative articles regarding best practices for your pet. During his free time, he enjoys going on hikes with his dog and reading.