Hi Friends, did you know that your dog likes to work? You already know that he or she loves to play with you. But for your pet, working and playing can be the same thing.
Sometimes when a dog or puppy chews your shoes or mom’s favorite couch pillow, it is because he is bored and needs something to do. Think about it, would you want to do nothing but follow someone around all day? Your animal friend needs to be challenged and busy for at least a little while every day.
I hope you are not picturing your puppy doing the dishes for you. That’s not what I mean by “work” at all! Many of the games you already play with your dog are great jobs for him or her. Do you play fetch? Dogs are crazy about running after a ball and bringing it back to you! They will do it about a million times, right? Here are a few other games you can play that will help keep your pet from getting too bored and chewing up the whole house.
- Show your dog a toy and then hide it in a super easy spot. Say, “Find the toy!” and let him go. When he goes to it, be sure and tell him how amazing he is. Make it harder and harder each time. You’ll be surprised at how good he is at sniffing out his favorite toy!
- Tell your dog to “stay”, and then go hide yourself. Call him to you and praise him for finding you
- Put his best dog treat inside a plastic bottle and watch him figure out how to get it out. Watch carefully to be sure he does not eat the plastic though.
- Spend time each day teaching your pet tricks and behaviors, like Sit, Stay, Down. Your pet loves to learn and will be a much happier dog when he knows these basic tricks.
- Take your dog for long walks in new places. The new smells and sights will entertain him at the same time his body is enjoying the exercise.
- Place his favorite toy under an upside down laundry basket and watch him figure out how to get to the toy. It will be like a pet puzzle!
Short video of two dogs on an Easter hunt for treats
Animals are not that different from us. They thrive on activity and using their brains as well as their bodies. A pesky pet that causes lots of trouble in the house or yard is usually a bored pet. He just needs something to do! He will keep himself busy by digging holes for no reason or attaching the window blinds if he has nothing else to do.
You can think lots of fun ways to give your pet some work to do, right? So, get to work!
Susie is a freelance writer who has always had a dog as part of her family since childhood. Her current writing partner is Layla, a mixed breed Labrador and Cocker Spaniel. http://susieklein.wordpress.com/
Based in Phoenix AZ., animal lover Kelly Preston is an award winning author of Real Dogs Don’t Whisper, a book in which she talks about her experiences and adventures with her special needs dogs and the life lessons they have taught – how she has learned and grown from them and they have learned and grown from her. Preston also produces Mr.MaGoo’s Corner, a free monthly dog-focused newsletter that features a reader of the month, birthday announcements, green pet tips, organic dog recipes and more.