I can't think of anything worse than venturing outdoors on cold, rainy winters day, and I know my pups, Oscar and Zara, feel exactly the same way. The long winter months can often bring on boredom in pets.
I know exactly when Zara gets cabin fever because she becomes mischievous and will purposefully look for things to steal and chew. Despite having a massive box of her own toys to play with, when every day is miserable and cold, toys just aren't enough! As owners, it's up to us as a pet parent to come up with ways to play and engage with our furball of love.
Here are five fun and easy ideas that will help keep boredom at bay.
Most pet owners are familiar with the Kong Toy, which you can fill with all sorts of yummy things and it will keep your pup entertained for hours. I like to give Oscar and Zara a homemade version using a de-cored apple and natural peanut butter. Simply de-core the apple, then stuff as much natural peanut butter inside as you can, and watch your pup have fun!
We’re all familiar with this childhood game, and dogs love to play it too. If your dog is really good at listening, ask him to sit and stay in one area, then run and hide. Call his name and see how long it takes for him to find you. If your dog won’t give you enough time to hide, ask your partner to hold your pup back while you run and hide. Call both their names and see how long it takes for them to find you. Offer a treat as soon as you are found. It’s loads of fun and gets the whole family involved.
Dogs love using their powerful nose. Ask them to sit and stay in one area (or ask your partner to hold them back) while you run and hide their favorite treats in different spots all over the house. See how many he can find without you pointing them out. Oscar is a hound so this game is a firm favorite in our house.
Interactive dog toys are great to keep your dogs mind active and thinking. Zara loves hers and because it has treats involved it keeps her entertained. I love playing with her and trying to trick her but she is too clever for me-haha! Interactive toys are widely available at most good pet stores so head on over and find one that’s right for your pup.
Invite your pup’s bestie around and they can keep themselves entertained while you and your bestie spend some time together. You can also give them homemade Kong toys, create treat hunts and play hide and seek altogether.
The winter months shouldn’t keep you from having fun with your pooch! Enjoy playing these games together and enjoy the quality time.