Do you hate to see them bored just because it’s cold outside and they aren’t able to run outside and play? Here are some easy ways in which you can keep your dogs busy or occupied during the cold winter seasons. However cold it might seem to be outside, you can still set aside some time and engage your dogs in some exercise just to make them active hence helping them to avoid being bored and lazy during the cold season. In this article, I will show you some of the things you can do to get your dogs busy and make them warm too.
I know it is difficult sometimes to get some time to spend with your dogs maybe because of your tight schedule but then how else would you expect to bond with your pets. You can always engage your dog in some activities including games to keep them busy and make them feel warm during the winter. The best part of it is that you don’t have to use any special equipment to do this, all you need is just yourself, your dog, maybe and a little bit of creativity. Below are some of the fun games and activities that can help you keep your dog entertained during the winter.
1. Invest in food dispensing toys
These things are always known to be invaluable boredom busters; you can also use rubber Kongs and stuff them with different types of treats for your dog. This will help in keeping them busy and away from being bored as you get to do some other things.
2. Try a Food Hunt
When you place the dry food for your dog in his food bowl, you will probably realise that your dog will clear everything within a few seconds and then starts staring at you. Anyway, you can put this food to some good work by making your dog search for it by sniffing around until it finds it. This would be such an engaging activity for your dog instead of just putting everything in the bowl. You can try crating your dog while hiding small pieces of food around your house and let your dog kibble hunt. You can start by placing the food in some open places where it would be easy for the dog to find but as the dog gets better, try hiding it in some more difficult places.
3. Play Hide and Seek
This is also one of the great activities in which you can engage your dog in to keep him away from boredom. It also helps in exercising their minds and body. This one is pretty easy, each family member should be having a treat with him or her then you will take turns in hiding just around the house and call the dog and reward him generously when he finally finds you. When you finish up your treat, just signal the other family member and let them know it’s their turn. This game can really help your dog and it’s a fun activity too.
4. Teach your dog to help you with some chores
One thing you might have realised with dogs is that they always love to have something to do however simple it may seem. You can always try and make them feel more useful maybe by teaching them names of things you wouldn’t mind getting retrieved. You can also teach them to get you something from somewhere around the house like a refrigerator. You can tie a towel around the refrigerator if you want your dog to learn on how to open the fridge. This will make it easy for him to grab the towel and open the door.
5. Play Tug and Fetch
This is one of the classic dog games that existed before and it still does now. This game doesn’t need much room as you can always play fetch games in the hallways while the tug game can practically be played anywhere in the house
6. Make your Dog work for his food
How do you think dogs are known to be man’s best friends? Of course, they helped in some certain areas like hunting and after the job was done, they got their treat. Today we give our dogs a lot of attention, comfy bed, free food, and many other things. Am sure you don’t want your dog to end up like Garfield, always eating and doing nothing right? Well, you can make your dog perform some tasks before you give them food, this way, they will be able to exercise their body and keep warm during the cold winter season.
7. Master the art of massaging your dog
This is also a great activity to keep your dog from boredom, we all know that learning on how to massage your dog and actually taking your time to massage your dog can be enriching for both the dog and you as the owner. Giving your dog a massage always makes them feel relaxed. This is something that is much beneficial especially for the older dogs or those dogs that have arthritis since it helps in soothing the sore and also the achy joints. Giving your dog a massage increases its blood circulation, reduces anxiety, relieves it from stress and also strengthens the bond between you two.
8. Create an obstacle course for your dog
You can also try coming up with an obstacle course for your dog, something just out of your mind. For instance, you can make your dog weave through his toys, jump over some towels and some other things. Once the dog has learned to weave through his toys, you can go to the next thing which is jumping over the towels and so on. This helps in keeping your dog stimulated mentally and encouraging its focus too.
9. Work on your dog’s impulse control
Since it is cold outside and you can’t take your dog for a walk, you can spare some time and work on your dog’s impulse control thus teaching your dog to have better manners. Just like children, dogs can also be taught that they cannot always get whatever they want right away. Impulse control usually helps the dogs to stay safe and keep themselves out of trouble. You can work on basic impulse controls like stay, wait, leave it and settle as they might come in handy when finally your dog decides to get loose.
10. Remind your dog of some old tricks
You can also brush over some old tricks with your dog because just like humans, dogs also need to be refreshed from time to time. For instance, if it’s been a while since you last asked your dog to play dead or even to roll over, now is the time to get your treats and go through these drills again. This will help your dogs not to become too rusty and lazy as the time goes by.
Well, there you have it. These are just a few activities in which you can engage your dogs in during the winter season to keep them active, warm and also away from boredom. You might notice that none of the above activities requires any specialization and skills for you to try them out with your dogs. All you need is just a little bit of time and your dog. A lot of us might brag about how much they love dogs but the big question still remains, do you have what it takes to keep them? Let’s take care of our dogs and make them happy each time because just like in marriage, dogs also need to be loved come sunshine or rain, during summer and winter too. When your dog is happy, healthy and in good shape, you will also feel happy about yourself so be happy as you keep your dog happy too.