You love playing with your dog, but they don’t always love playing back. Sometimes it’s hard to come up with new ways to interact with your pup that engage them and get their minds working. Dogs are smart creatures and thrive on mental stimulation like puzzles, tricks, and games. Finding new ways to challenge your dog on a daily basis will not only strengthen the bond between you and your furry friend, but also keep them happy and healthy. They come in all different types – active games that get your dog moving, thinking games that challenge their intelligence, and even social games that help dogs practice appropriate interactions with humans and other animals.If you’re looking for some fun activities for you and your pooch, look no further. We’ve got lots of awesome dog-friendly games to try at home or while you’re out exploring new places together.
Hide and Seek
One of the most classic dog games is hide and seek. This game is great for dogs of all ages as well as all temperaments. You just need to find something your dog can’t eat (a toy or a ball work great). Then you put it in one place and let your dog go find it. You can make it more challenging by putting it in different places, or varying how long your dog has to find it. You can also make it more interesting by turning the game into a competition between you and your dog. Whoever finds the toy first gets a reward, such as praise, play, or treats. Another classic game that is also a great bonding experience for you and your dog is fetch. You can play this game indoors or outside, depending on the weather and your dog’s comfort level. This game is great for dogs of all ages and all temperaments. You can play fetch with just about any type of toy, though balls are probably the most common. You can make the game more challenging by varying how long you have your dog fetch the toy, or by throwing the toy in different directions or over obstacles.
Tug of War
If your dog loves to tug, then you’re in luck, because tug of war is an awesome dog game. This is a great game for dogs of all ages and all temperaments that love to tug. You can play this game indoors or out, and it can be modified to suit the needs of your dog. If your dog is a beginner or isn’t interested in tugging with you, you can start out by having them simply hold the toy in their mouth. If your dog is a bit more advanced, put a knot in the end of the toy for better grip. Dogs tend to lose interest in this game if you pull too much. Make sure you let go of the toy when your dog lets go, even if it’s not on your end. If you don’t, your dog may lose interest in the game or get frustrated.
Dogs have a natural instinct to follow a trail left behind by scent. Playing tracking games with your dog engages those instincts and is great for mental stimulation. While there are commercial tracking kits available, you can also use things you probably have around the house, such as coffee grounds, black pepper, or vanilla extract. (Avoid using cinnamon, which can be toxic to dogs.) You can use these items in a variety of ways to make a “fake” trail to follow. You can start off with easy trails and increase the difficulty as your dog gets better at it. You can also create a custom trail by leaving a scent trail of your own. Using an essential oil like peppermint, eucalyptus, or orange, you can spray a line from where you start to where you want your dog to go, such as a park, another trail, or a specific object. Make sure you don’t spray directly on other people or dogs, and only do this in areas where it’s okay to leave behind scents like gardens or parks.
Bowl Coaching Game
This game is great for dogs that love puzzles and for dogs that aren’t too food-motivated. All you need is a wooden bowl. You can get as fancy or as simple as you want with the design. Once you have your bowl, put your dog’s kibble or treats inside it. This will take your dog some time to figure out, which is the point. Once they do, they’ll have to work to get their food out. This is great for mental stimulation and will keep your dog busy for a while. You can make this game more challenging by making it harder for your dog to get the food out. You can also increase the difficulty by switching out the food for toys, such as tennis balls, or by adding other types of food. You can also switch up the difficulty by using different bowl shapes.
Rotating Shapes Game
This game is great for dogs that are food-motivated, but not too food-motivated. You can use any type of food for this game, but small, soft treats work best. You’ll also need different shaped pieces of paper, such as triangles, circles, squares, and diamonds. Start by placing a treat under one of the pieces of paper. Let your dog see you do this, so they know the end goal. Then, move the papers around, but keep the treat under one of them. Your dog will have to sniff out which one the treat is under. This game is meant to be challenging for your dog, so don’t move the papers too quickly.
Find the Food
This is another game that is great for dogs that are food-motivated, but not too food-motivated. You can use any type of food for this game, but small, soft treats work best. You’ll also need different items for your dog to find, such as a tennis ball, a squeaky toy, a rubber band, etc. Start by having your dog watch you put the food under one of the items. Then, have your dog find the food. They’ll have to use their nose to sniff out what they’re looking for. This game is meant to be challenging, so don’t make things too easy for your dog.
Stuffed Animal Surprise
This is a great game for dogs that are less food-motivated and that love stuffed animals. You’ll need a few stuffed animals, some treats, and a small container. Put a treat in one of the stuffed animals, and shake up the others. Then, let your dog pick which one they want to play with. Once they start playing with the stuffed animal with the treat in it, take the treat out and replace it with more treats. This game is meant to be challenging for your dog, so don’t make it too easy for them.
Dog Memory Game
This is a great game for dogs that aren’t too food-motivated, but love toys. You’ll need a few different toys, some treats, and a few places to put them. Put a treat in one of the toys, and hide the other toys around the house. Then, let your dog find the toys. Once they find the toys with treats in them, take away the treats and replace them with more. This game is meant to be challenging for your dog, so don’t make it too easy for them. – This game is great for dogs of all ages and all temperaments. – It’s also a good way to keep your dog busy while you’re doing other things around the house. – It’s a great way to keep your dog’s mind stimulated and help them relax at the same time. – It’s best to do this game in areas where it’s okay to leave treats behind, such as gardens or parks.
Dogs are intelligent creatures that love to engage their minds and interact with their environment. Finding new ways to challenge your dog on a daily basis will not only strengthen the bond between you and your furry friend, but also keep them happy and healthy. These are just a few of the many awesome games dogs love to play with you. If you’re looking for some fun activities for you and your pooch, look no further. We’ve got lots of awesome dog-friendly games to try at home or while you’re out exploring new places together.