With winter in full force, your dog may be suffering from cabin fever. Like us our dogs daily routine changes in the winter months. Though it is still important that your dog gets daily exercise, so they don’t pack on the winter weight.
Unplowed or icy sidewalks and roads can make walking extremely difficult and even unsafe for you and your dog. On a winter day that you can get outside for some exercise with your pet, be mindful of the outdoor temperature and the salt that may be on the walkways. Choosing to implement some indoor activities can help eliminate your dogs winter boredom.
You can provide your dog with toys that give them some mental stimulation by playing hide and seek with treats or challenging your dog’s nose. Hide & seek is a wonderful way to get your dog up and moving. You can hide a few treats in various rooms around the house or use his/her favourite toy. To increase their willingness to find the item praise and reward them each time an item is found.
The nose game is a great way for your dog to use their nose to find a reward. Start by showing your dog the treat and then using cups or a box, place that treat under the item and have your dog investigate. If they paw or push over one let your dog see if there is a treat under it. If they are correct, then they get the treat!
Indoor time is the perfect time to brush up on some training. You can teach your dog a new trick or rehearse old tricks; this will focus your dog’s extra energy on something constructive.
The laser pointer can be a great tool to entertain your dog, as well as your feline friend – just not at the same time.
In summary, a busy pet is a happy pet in the winter months! Keep your pet occupied with some of these activities, and you will make the winter months not just bearable, but fun!
Written by: Jennifer Fennel, VA/CCR