So your dog is not getting exersize...? here is 5 things you can do inside, to get the head and the heart working
Having fun with your dog in doors can involve two important aspects of having a well cared for dog: training base behaviours and getting exersize. So no more excuses here are 5 easy ways of enhancing the bond between family and fourlegged friend.
1. Name Game
- requires on dog two people each with a handful of your dogs biscuits (B grade) and a few pea sized tidbits of your dogs favourite treat (A grade).
- in the least 'busy' room each person stand on either side
- person '1' (the tallest one to save on arguments) calls the dog in an excited tone, as the dog comes to you give an A grade tidbit
- person '2' waits until the dog is finished the tidbit, then excitedly calls the dog over and give an A grade treat
- then continue to call the dog between person 1 and 2 but giving a B grade tidbit rather than an A grade.
- increase the distance between the people by moving into different rooms, every now and again alternate with A grade tibits and B grade tidbits.
- if your dog dosen't get it be more exciting, run a few steps backwards, raise the tone of your voice and use better treats, try this game the first few times when your dog is hungry.
2. Where is Mum? Where is Dad?
- following on from the Name Game we teach the dog to find other members of the family
- the whole family can play for now we will have mum dad and the dog
- start with mum in one room dad in another
- mum with the dog says 'where is dad?' and runs to dad and then makes a fuss over the dog when they find dad and rewards with a tidbit
- dad then hides in another room, mum and dog looks for dad saying 'where is dad?' then again makes a fuss when he is found.
- soon enough the dog will respond to 'where is dad?' and you can replicate 'where is mum?'
- this is a great game for giving the dog something to do when he is bored but everyone in the house is too busy to give him enough attention.
3. Find It
- you need a favourite toy, A grade and B grade tidbits
- get your dog to sit and stay near the couch the over behind it lead a trail of B grade tidbits a foot apart then at the end of it the favourite toy out of site (obscure form view with a cushion)
- in a high pitched voice say 'find' and motion with your hand along the trail, as you dog gets to each tidbit say 'find'
- when your dog reaches the favourite toy say 'find' and get very excited and fuss over your dog and give A grade tidbits.
- over time make the distance between the tidbits greater but continue to use your hand as a guide for where the dog is to look
- soon enough you can remove the tidbit and just reward the dog when he find the toy... great game for your dog when you can't take him outside or he needs to stay inside.
4. Bring It Back.
- get your dogs favourite toy and a handful of tidbits, if he already retrieves then great jump to the last stage.
- sit with your dog in a no distractions room, such as the bath room.
- wave the toy around and excitedly say 'bring it back!' then toss the toy about a foot away from the dog, if he grabs it get really excited and give him a tidbit
- extend the throw each time and reward when the dog brings it back to you, he will automatically learn to drop it at you in order to receive the tidbit
- start to throw the toy in different areas of the house using the same excited 'bring it back' and reward on the return
- now you can throw the toy down the stairs and get you dog running back up ...soon enough your dog will be pooped and had lots of fun. You can even do it whilst you work at your computer or watch TV.
- tie a knot in the end of an old singlet and have a handful of tidbits
- with your dog start to engage his fascination in the tug toy (singlet) by tossing it around and excitedly saying 'whats that'
- let your dog take the knot end in his mouth and tug back towards you and encourage
- stop all communication and excitement whilst still holding the tug toy say 'enough' then give a tidbit and get excited about the dog, ignoring the tug toy
- repeat the game until the dog starts playing and stops playing on command.
- make sure you don't chase your dog if he wins the tug and runs off, or if the dog gets too rough..if this happens just stop everything, say nothing, drop the tug toy and just get up and walk away
These are great games during wet weather or at night, and can be added to to make fun games for the whole family.