If there was anyone happy about the current period of social distancing it would probably be our pups. Now their humans have even more time at home with them!
Still, perhaps even more than us humans, dogs are very schedule oriented and love their routine. When our usual travel and any social contacts are restricted and our daily routines change, it might be hard to explain to our four-legged friends. The days that grant less mental and physical stimulation than usual can make settling in frustrating for them.
However, even if you’re limited on where to go, there are still tons of great opportunities for enrichment for both you and your dog! There are many fun things you can do at home and even without any equipment – here’s a few examples:
- Hide treats/toys around the house and have your pup find them – Nosework is great mental stimulation for dogs and when you’re unable to go out and about as usual it can be a great way to mentally fatigue your pup! Keep your dog out of a room, place treats around in random spots, and then release your dog to search the room for the delicious treats!
- Teach the old dog some new tricks, or brush up on old ones – (spin/shake/weave legs/jumping up on objects) – Unable to leave your house? This is a great time to brush up on some behaviors you’ve been working on or study completely new ones to teach!
- Go for long walks in the nature – Fresh air is a great way for both you and your dog to de-stress, and spending time in the nature is also one of the best ways to boost the immune system! Allowing your dog to sniff around new locations in your neighborhood is also a great mental stimulant and has a calming effect.
- Practice grooming / handling (grabbing feet/brushing) – Practicing cooperative grooming and vet skills helps you pup in the long run. Letting them know that being handled can be a good experience!
That’s just a few tips for starters. We’ll be sharing more over the coming weeks. You can also find a wealth of other activities on our website. OneMind Dogs method and our way of training are based on exercises that are short, super fun for both you and your dogs – and most importantly right now – they are easily done with no special training equipment or big training facilities!