Everyone is busy and can feel guilty for not spending enough time with their pooch. Here is one tip for giving your dog some much-needed fun.
My latest discovery is a variation of something that I have been doing for years: stuffing and hiding Kongs for my dogs to find. When I do this I often hide twelve Kongs for my three dogs with varying amounts of food in each one. I often wonder if they enjoy the actual discovery or the food more, because they seem to enjoy both aspects of the game.
My new game is very simple.
- Ask them to stay (sometimes as long as 15-20 minutes to keep their anticipation up and their minds working)
- Tear up dry treats (I use dried chicken)
- Let them smell the treats (so they know the "target")
- Hide in many, many places around my house including under their dog beds, behind doors, under pillows on the couch, on bookshelves, in their toy chest, and in many different levels from the floor to on chairs and other locations
- Say, "ok" and watch the fun
- As your dog becomes more savvy, you can make the hiding places more difficult
- Your dog might not find all the treats at once, that is okay, this can keep him occupied for a long period of time as he "hunts" for his food
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The really cool aspect of this game is that you are not limited to the amount of Kongs that you have. Don't worry that your dog will start to destroy your house looking for food all the time unless he is normally destructive, in which case you need to continue monitoring his behavior .
Try this and let me know if you have other games that you have found to be enjoyable for your dogs.