With winter upon us, Our outdoor time becomes less frequent, but our dogs still need to play. Mental exercise can also be a good way to tire out your dog. Here are some active games that will engage your dog both physically and mentally.
Set up a bunch of opaque containers side by side. (boxes or cups work well ) Without your dog seeing it, hide a treat or toy under one of the containers. Then encourage the dog to sniff at the containers. When your dog pauses at the one with the “prize” lift up the container, give praise and allow him to eat the treat or play with the toy. After a few times your dog will know what is expected of this game. You can even teach them to either sit at the right container or put their paw on it. Keep adding more containers and spread them further apart to make the more challenging.
It is best to play this game with at least two people. Show your dog what you are going to hide, like a toy, treat or even a person!! Don’t let the dog see where you are hiding the item. Next bring your dog around saying “find it”. Point to various places and encourage him when getting close to the hiding spot. Once the item is found give lots of praise and allow them to eat the treat or play with the toy if that’s what was hidden. Once they get the knack of this game, their searching and finding will get faster and faster.