A rainy day often brings your dog the same dilemma that little Johnny (who couldn’t play outdoors) had. Rather than asking the rain to ‘go away’, you could entertain your pet with a few fun games indoors. In fact, this presents the perfect opportunity for mentally stimulating games to exercise their little grey cells.
An idle dog who does not have enough mental exercise, does form a little ‘devil’s workshop’ in his or her head. Dogs are intelligent animals with the ability comprehend more than we assume. When their minds are not exercised enough, they will try to entertain themselves by being destructive.
To safeguard your favourite shoes and curios from an exuberant pet, you need to ensure ample exercise and playtime. A few games you can play with your pet indoors are –
Look for it!
This game involves you hiding treats and your pet tracking them down by sniffing out the treat. To start off, show your pet the treat and then hide it in a space close-by that your pet is able to access. Once he sniffs it out a few times and gets the game, you could make it harder by making him ‘sit, stay’ while you hide it further away.
The Hideaway Treat Game
For this game, you could use paper cups or even your hands. The idea is to hide a treat, under a cup or in your closed fist. Move around the cups and let your pet pick out the cup under which the treat is hidden. Use the same logic with your closed fists.
A New Trick
Mental stimulation can also be achieved by teaching your pet a new trick. A super useful one is teaching him or her to help you clean up after playtime. If your pet already knows the command ‘drop it’, this will be a lot easier. If he doesn’t, teach him this first. Then persuade him to ‘drop’ each of his toys into the toy basket.
Puzzle toys are a great way to keep your pet occupied and to get them thinking. They are generally rewarded for solving the puzzle with a treat and so, are happy to spend hours trying. These toys are available in the market and just need to be filled with treats. Remember you should be around to supervise when your pet is playing with any toy.
Rainy day blues are no longer a thing with a playful pooch in the house. You can think up a number of other games to play with your pet, just build on what he or she loves to do already (this generally involves a treat). Remember to think the games through to make sure they are safe for everyone involved.
Watch this video for a demonstration of these mental exercises!