How to Have a Fun Day with Your Dog
Caring for dogs can be a full-time job, but when you get the opportunity to spend the whole day with your pup, you’ll want to take advantage and have fun. Whether you’re a new dog owner or just looking for a way to keep an active dog entertained, you should get outside, think of fun activities to do at home, and have lots of toys and treats to keep your pup entertained.
Take your dog for a walk.Visit a park, take a stroll around the block, or go to a doggy park to let your dog interact with other pups. Dogs love going for walks, and it's great exercise for owner and pup. Make sure you obey leash laws. Even if your dog is well trained, other dogs may not be, so maintaining control of your pet is important.
- Always clean up waste after your dog when you go for walks.
- Bring water to keep your dog hydrated, especially on hot days.
- Take plenty of breaks so you don’t overtire your dog or push it too far.
Visit a dog beach.Many dogs like water, and going for a swim can be a really fun way to pass the time, especially if you live in a warm climate. Check at your local lake or ocean to see if they allow dogs. You may even be able to do fun water sports like kayaking and surfing with your pup in some locations.
- Always make sure your dog can swim by starting it in shallow water and letting it submerge gradually.
- Don't take your dog swimming if it has been sick recently as this can lead to relapsed illness.
Hide toys or treats in the yard.Many dogs enjoy hunting, and this can be a fun way to keep your pup busy. Start by letting your dog see or smell the treat or toy. Get your dog excited by saying, “Do you want a treat?” Sound happy and excited to energize the pup. Then, leave the dog inside or have a friend distract it while you hide the toy or treat. Then, let your dog look for it.
- You may need to train your dog to fetch their favorite toy by name. Say something like, “Get the ball,” each time you throw or hide their favorite ball. That way, when you take the dog outside to find the hidden object, you can use this command to get started.
- Hide toys or treats in obvious spots at first. Then, place them in increasingly difficult locations as your pup gets better at finding them.
- Don't hide the treat underground, this could promote digging holes in your garden.
Chase your dog.Dogs enjoy running and jumping, so by playing chase, you give your dog something to run from and remain a part of their play. If your dog ever looks or behaves fearfully or aggressively, stop chasing it immediately. Most dogs will love playing chase, but make sure to let your dog rest.
Play keep away with your dog.This is especially fun if you have another person spending time with you and your pup. Use your dog’s favorite ball or Frisbee and throw it over, around, and under your dog. This helps your dog improve agility and reflexes, and can be lots of fun that doesn’t tire your pup out too quickly since it will only be moving a short distance between you and your helper.
Play fetch.For dogs with lots of energy, this can be a great way to let your pup wear itself out, while you get some much needed rest. Stand or sit in one location and throw a ball, Frisbee, or other toy for your pup. Have your dog bring it back to you and throw again. Many dogs would do this all day, but make sure to give your dog plenty of breaks, even if it doesn’t seem to want them.
Enjoying a Day at Home
Catch up on some sleep.Nothing can be more relaxing than having a lazy day at the house with your dog. Take a nap, lounge around, and catch up on your rest. This is especially good if you and your dog are typically very active. It’s important to maintain an adequate amount of quality sleep time, and snuggling up with your dog for a nap or a few extra hours of sleep in the morning is a great bonding opportunity.
Hide a toy or treat inside the house.Just like outside, this is a fun way to keep your pet busy without having to overly exert yourself. Show the dog a treat or toy. Then, keep the dog in another area until you’ve hidden it, and tell your dog to find the toy. If it can't find the hidden object after a while, give it a clue or show your dog where it is. Your dog will get better at this with practice.
- If you have a dog that stays inside during the day, hide some treats or toys around the house. This will keep the dog occupied while it is not being directly observed.
Teach your dog new tricks.Training is a great way to spend time with your pet. Dogs like to learn and make their owners happy. Take time to teach your dog tricks that are just for fun like shaking hands and rolling over, but devote the bulk of your training time to helping your dog learn how to ask for your help or get your attention.
- Reinforce with treats, but remember the goal of training for your pet shouldn’t be getting food. It should be discovering how to get positive responses from you, so a simple, “Good job!” and a pat on the head are just as important.
- For instance, dogs who jump on people when they come to the door can be trained to stay calm. Go outside and wait a few moments. Knock on the door. Let yourself in. If the dog jumps, stand there until it returns to the ground, pet your dog, and tell it good job.
Start a tug-of-war game.This is another game that’s easy to play inside because it doesn’t involve a lot of movement that could potentially break or damage your furniture or other items in the home. You can buy special tug of war ropes and toys for your pet, or tie a knot in an old gym sock. As you hold one end, let your pup pull the other. After a few seconds, give the toy to your dog, and tell it, “Good job!”
Stocking up on Dog Toys and Treats
Get some doggy chew toys.Dogs need strong, healthy teeth to thrive. Chew toys are a great way to keep their teeth healthy. Some chew toys are made of durable plastics, rubber, and other materials that will last your pup a long time. Others, like bones or rawhide, are edible.
Make fun toys for your pet.If you don’t have a lot of money to buy new toys for your pet, get creative. Your house is probably full of dog toys. Gym socks are a great toy option. You can fill the toes of old socks with treats that your pup will have to dig out, or tie a knot in the socks and play tug of war. Use an old tennis ball as a puzzle toy. Cut a small incision in the ball along the white lines. Pull back the flap, fill with treats, push the flap inside of the tennis ball, and give it to your pup. Your dog will have a blast getting the treats out.
- Do something different to clothes and other home-made items, so your pup knows which socks or clothes belong to it. For instance, tie a knot in socks or attach old clothes around a plastic bottle. Otherwise, don’t give your pet old shoes, cushions, clothes, or other household items you’ve taught it not to chew. This will undo its training.
Purchase puzzle toys.Challenging your dog to use its brain, teeth, and paws to get a reward is a great way to help it pass the time. There are numerous varieties of puzzle toys available for dogs of all sizes. Some of these toys are made to hide treats. There are also puzzle toys that your dog will need to pull apart. You can then put the toys back together, allowing your pup to start the fun all over again.
Choose healthy treats.When purchasing foods or making them in the home, make sure to keep in mind your dog’s health and weight. If you have a dog that is overweight or has other health concerns, look for treats that are lower in calories or that include health supplements. Remember a word of encouragement or petting your pup can be just as effective.
- Ask your vet for recommendations, or talk to a representative at your local pet store.
- Cheese, beef jerky, and lunch meats are all relatively affordable and healthy treats for your dog.
- Check the label on store bought snacks looking for high calorie counts, ingredients that you don’t recognize, and other tell-tale signs the treats are less than healthy.
QuestionHow do I make my dog feel happy?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerGive your dog lots of affection, talk to it, and reward with treats. Take long walks and play with your dog to give it plenty of exercise and prevent boredom.Thanks!
QuestionWhat can I do if my dog is on a leash because he runs away?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerYou can jog along side your dog while its on the leash, or look for fenced in dog parks in your area.Thanks!
QuestionHow do I play with the dog?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerThanks!
QuestionHow do I make my dog very tired without fetch?wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerMental stimulation is just as important as physical stimulation, so you can play other games.Thanks!
QuestionHow do I get my dog to stop chewing up tennis balls? He's fully grown and still does it.wikiHow ContributorCommunity AnswerYou can buy tough balls that your dog can't destroy.Thanks!
- Use a leash for your dog when walking it.
- Never give a puppy an old shoe to chew on. This tells dogs that chewing shoes is permitted.
- If you just brought your dog home, let it adapt and get used to its new surroundings before jumping right into training or games. This can overly stress your new pup.
- Pick up your dog's waste.
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