New Dog Parents
Playtime with your dog isn’t just about fun and games—it also helps your dog stay mentally and emotionally healthy.
Plus, preventing boredom—especially if you live in a small space or are spending more time indoors lately—can help both of you maintain a happy home life.
Read on for some toys and activities that not only keep your dog’s mind sharp, but also provide loads of entertainment for both of you!
In addition to physical exercise, dogs need to exercise their mind. It helps them stay sharp and emotionally healthy, and can prevent certain boredom-associated behaviors like destructive chewing.
Plus, the feeling you get from watching your dog solve a puzzle or discover a new slice of the world is priceless—it’s fascinating and heartwarming to observe their thinking process.
Here are some ways to exercise your pup’s mind that can be fun for both of you…
Many dogs will pick a favorite toy, but it’s still good to have a variety for them to use.
Examples of some basic toy types include:
Of course, you can customize this list or add new types of toys based on your dog’s personal preferences.
Also consider safety: If your dog tries to chew off and swallow pieces, they may need sturdier options rather than stuffed or less durable toys.
Puzzle feeders are a lot of fun, and they serve a dual purpose—they keep your dog entertained AND fed with kibbles or treats.
As dog lovers, we’re fortunate to have many different puzzle feeder options to choose from nowadays, including:
With all the options out there, you can choose a feeder that just releases a few treats, or one that incrementally dispenses your dog’s entire meal (in the latter case, just check that they’re having fun and not experiencing a barrier to their dinner).
And, some feeders allow you to set the “difficulty” level based on your dog’s abilities and interest.
Prefer a do-it-yourself option? I like your suggestion here. You can even make your own puzzle feeders…
For example, try…
Put together one of these toys, then watch your dog have a blast getting to the treats!
One note, though: Don’t let puzzle feeders spoil your dog’s diet! If using treats, be sure it fits into their balanced nutritional plan.
Dogs on a diet—or any dog with an active mind, regardless of their diet—may also enjoy a puzzle toy. This is a similar concept to a puzzle feeder, but it’s purely for play with no food involved.
Most dogs are naturally curious and interested in the world around them.
So, providing novel experiences for your adult dog can be a great form of mental stimulation.
Remember to engage as many of their five senses as possible. This can include…
Bonus: When done at an appropriate pace, introducing your dog to new people, animals, places, and situations can help them become socialized and well-adjusted.
Just be sure to go slowly if your dog seems nervous at all, and try again another day if necessary. Introducing new things too fast can cause a dog to develop fearful tendencies.
Dog training can be both functional and fun.
Many dogs enjoy the mental stimulation, and it keeps them from getting bored. Plus, learning will help keep their mind sharp.
Within the world of dog training, you have many options, including:
Also, look into teaching your dog games such as tag, hide-and-seek, or scavenger hunts (hide treats in the home or yard for your pup to find).
Dogs are individuals with their own personalities, social tendencies, athletic abilities, and personal preferences. So, see what your dog likes best.
Remember to spend time with your dog during these activities as much as possible, too.
Joining your pup in a positive experience will help your bond of friendship grow even deeper, and create joyful memories for both of you.
From our family to yours,
Fromm Family Pet Food
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