Dogs are one of our most beloved companions. It’s in our best interest to give them a long and happy life filled with special moments that we’re going to remember forever. Games play a big role in keeping them healthy and creating a special bond with their owner. Throwing and fetching the same stick over and over can quickly get boring for both you and your dog. Whether played indoors or outdoors, these are just some games to play with your dog.
Tug of War
Even though it’s popular, this game is avoided by many owners from fear of increased aggression. However, when played properly, it helps to teach a dog manners and proper behavior. Grab a toy or a tight rope and give your pet a signal to grab it. Shake it from side to side but be careful not to pull it too hard since it can cause pain on their teeth. If you notice him getting a bit too aggressive or biting anything other than the rope/toy, stop the game immediately.
What’s My Name?
Commonly used by puppy owners, the Name Game helps pets connect different names with different objects. It can be used to help a puppy remember his name or teach a dog what his toys are called. Start by simply calling out your dog’s name and give him a treat him when he looks and focuses on you. This is a common way with which people teach their dogs to fetch newspapers. As their knowledge advances, this game can be expanded into different types of hide and seek/find the treats variations. Hide his favorite toys or treats and tell him to find a specific one using the names he taught. When he brings the correct one, give him praise and lots of cuddles.
Make Him Run
Prey chasing, doggie soccer, and scent following are just some of the games to help your dog engage in physical activity. Tie his favorite toy with a rope. Get in an open area and run around while he tries to keep up with you and catch it. Let him win every so often so he doesn’t get discouraged. To increase their tracking capabilities, get your pet to follow a scent. You can do this by soaking a cloth with something that has a strong smell, such as Eucalyptus oil. Drag it along the ground and hide it. Bring him to the beginning of the path so that he can sense the cloth and go along the path until he starts following it on his own. Teach your dog to dribble a ball with his snout. Try to get him to push it into a small goal using treats and to pick it up with his mouth when you kick it to him. Try to incorporate any of these agility games into the routine so he can get his daily training in. Put an effort into switching out the different games every so often.
The main goal is for both you and your dog to have fun. If you see him getting too tired have a small cuddle break in between. Devote some time to him and he’ll give you his unconditional love in return.