The rainy season has arrived in Whatcom County. Seasonal high winds, cold rains and fewer hours of daylight can make pet owners less motivated to take their pets out for walks–-and dogs can be less motivated to want to go out and play.
All dog breeds need mental and physical stimulation on a daily basis to keep them happy and healthy, especially during the winter months.
The good news is there are plenty of fun indoor activities humans and dogs can do together when it’s wet outside. From playing a family friendly round of hide-and-seek to a game of fetch in the hallway; the only limitation is your imagination.
Below are some fun, playful indoor options for those days when everyone is feeling a little stir crazy.
Build an obstacle course. Arrange pet toys and soft, safe objects (like couch cushions) for him/her to move around, crawl under or jump over. Encourage navigation through the course with a yummy reward.
Treadmill. Dogs need to walk…a lot sometimes. Using a treadmill is not the same as an outdoor walk but if going outside isn’t an option, or your dog is still wired after a walk, try a treadmill, following these safety guidelines.
Toys & games. Introduce new toys and games! What dog doesn’t enjoy the smell of a new tennis ball or the thrill of playing tug-of-war with a new rope?
Use stairs. Try throwing a tennis ball (or any house friendly ball) up the stairs for them to chase. This sounds like a good workout for both parties!
Grooming. According to dog expert Cesar Milan, a bath or a brushing session can be a wonderful activity for a day spent inside. Any kind of grooming, done with care and love, is a kind of affection, and sharing that affection can bring you two closer together. Be sure to satisfy exercise and discipline as much as possible beforehand, though!
Teach a new trick/work on old ones. It’s always good to keep training your dog with basic commands—the rainy season is also a perfect time to teach them new ones like balancing treats on their nose, guessing which hand a treat is hidden in, learning the names of toys, newspapers, slippers, car keys, etc. so they can retrieve…there are endless options really.
Search & Sniff: Hide treats around your home to set your dog off on a tail wagging adventure. Your dog will put his nose to work to find the hidden treasures.
Snuggle up, relax and watch dog movies: Sometimes everyone is tired and a good old fashioned movie date is adequate. Whip up some homemade treats for your dog to make it extra special.
If you and your pooch are brave and still venture outside regardless of the elements, remember these tips for keeping your pet healthy and happy this winter.
For those that can’t provide enough exercise for their fur babies during the week due to work or family commitments, consider doggy daycare at Rover. We guarantee they will leave dog tired.