Guaranteed ways to tire your dog out without the effort
Hi everyone, welcome back!
This week has been very exciting as our first week as Wonder Walks, Canine Adventures. I still can't believe I'm saying that! Problem solving has definitely played a part this week as you can imagine. New dogs starting with us, old ones with new friends, a new system to get to grips with and brand new destinations!
Some dogs don't like others. It's like human beings, sometimes you meet someone and you just don't 'gel.' So it's all trial and error as to which groups should walk well together, which dogs compliment each other and which groupings you really just need to avoid!
While I take care of all of that, Wallace has been boarding here this week and he's had a new friend over this weekend from Bristol, Jasper the Working Cocker Spaniel. With being placed so close to Centre Parcs, we have dogs coming from all over the country for a nice weekend away in the woods. These two are a very playful pair as you might expect from a Staffy and a Working Cocker Spaniel. Rest just isn't in their vocabulary! So I thought I'd share some activities that we've been playing to keep the energy at bay because, let's face it, sometimes you just need a break...
This is a crowd favourite for those who will do anything for some food. (Guilty!) Add some water to a paddling pool and sprinkle their favourite treats on top. This game is always more fun if the treats sink. The dogs can smell the food through the water, but think "why can't I get to it!?" Really simple, really easy and you can leave the dogs to explore and work out the puzzle for themselves.
Add string to the end of a piece of bamboo or something sturdy you can use as a handle. I use a long metal rod (my Dad has loads in the garage!) Tie a treat to the end and tease your dog to jump and follow the treat until they retrieve it. This game can go on for as long as you can keep the treat, or until you feel generous enough to give it away! You can play this with anything if you're watching your dogs weight. Their favourite toy, a ball perhaps? Anything that is going to tempt them to reach for the reward.
Get that sniffer working! My favourite is to do this with peanut butter. Just smear it all over your garden. On trees, on benches, plant pots, anywhere you can think of. Let your dog explore the scent and send them off on a hunt for the peanut butter. You could use meat paste if your dog would prefer or anything that'll stick. Take advantage of the best sense of smell the animal kingdom has to offer and let your doggy use what nature gave them. Trust me, the challenge will be rewarding!
I hope these ideas have inspired you to try at least one. If you want my personal favourite it's the Tempting Poles. The dogs are always so funny, the lengths they go to for a treat. I’ve known Max, the Japanese Akita, to throw himself into the air, twist himself backwards and land on his back. He didn't get the treat though! Of course its’s important they get the treat eventually to give them the incentive to do it again, and after a few more excited jumps Max managed to get his!
Until next time, keep those tails wagging!