There are always going to be times when you and your double coated dog are stuck at home such as rain storms or nationwide lock-downs such as 2020 showed. But what can you do to stave off boredom for your beloved pup? Let’s take a look.
1. ‘Cookie Scatter’ – This is a favourite with my Japanese Spitz. As we live in a two storey apartment that has a great spiral staircase, we can easily throw some tiny cookies up onto the top landing so he has to run up the stairs to search out the treats. While he does that, we toss a few under the coffee table in the living room so he has to race down the stairs to seek these out. We then throw a few more up the top again, and then a few into the kitchen. This is giving him plenty of exercise as he goes back over the areas we had thrown food into to double or triple check he got all of them. Then he needs a drink and is happy to lie down , wash himself, and have a rest.
2. ‘Hidden Treasure’ – Want to take it to the next level? Keep your dog in one enclosed room while you put hide their treats in empty peanut jars, yoghurt containers, toilet roll inners, or other innovative things. Then put them in places that are a little hard to get at like under the couch or behind a door just enough so they can manoeuvre the item out, then figure out how to get the treat from within whatever casing. Then let them out of the room to explore.
3. ‘Toy Chest’ – I always have on hand a few children’s teddy bears or soft toys that are alright to rip apart with my boy choking on any eyes or particular stuffing buttons. He usually has energy to burn when locked up inside all day, so playing tug-o-war with him with these toys gives him a chance to exercise his jaw and legs and chase the toy if I throw it upstairs or across the room.
4. ‘Jumping Beans’ – A game we like to play with our boy is racing around the apartment, then jumping onto the bed where he gladly follows only to be petted furiously then he jumps off and races around then jumps back on for more petting. We jump off, he does too, then back on so he exhausts himself out, and we get to have a great time pampering him and enjoying each other’s company for a good twenty minutes if need be.
5. ‘Ready Ropes’ – If you have some old sheets or worn out dresses, tie them in relatively large knots popping in a treat here and there, forming a length of rope. You can either play tug-o-war using this game, or tie the rope at one end to a high spot in the room, so they have to gradually tackle each stage of the rope until they can’t get any higher, then let them have the last bit after you’re untied it. Alternatively, you could use an existing length of tough rope, and slot in treats so they have to work through the fibres.
I’m sure you have many other ideas of your own, but these will help you on your way, or add to your existing playtime activities.