There’s always a reason why you can’t get outside with your dog. This can simply be that the weather is bad. Keeping your dog entertained and mentally stimulated is important. Of course physical exercise is needed too but mental stimulation is important. These are some of the simple things I do to help keep my dogs entertained and mentally stimulated while we are stuck inside. It’s been raining quite a bit where I live so I’ve been working on finding creative ways to keep my dogs from being bored.
Dog Entertained Indoors
Here are a few things I’ve been doing more and more often with my dogs. They seem to really enjoy these. There are plenty of other games I can play with them but I’ll start with this list as these are currently their favorites and my go-to’s with my dogs.
1. Play Find the Treats
I do this by using a 12 count muffin tin (a 6 count will work fine too) and hiding anywhere from 3-5 treats in the tin and cover them with a tennis ball. This lets your dog use their nose to fine the treats or kibble pieces that are hidden. I do this because it allows my dogs to use their brain and work to find the treats that they so eagerly want but don’t get unless we are playing or training with them.
2. Use a Stuffed KONG
One way to keep a dog entertained for long periods of time is to use a KONG and fill it with anything that is safe for dogs. I’ll use anything from raw beef or chicken to peanut butter and even dog treats. These are things my dogs go crazy for. I’ll even freeze them to help extend the time it’ll last and occupy the dogs for. Be sure to take into consideration any allergies your dog does have.
3. Help With Chores
This is a neat way to get your dog involved with helping to clean up. This can be teaching them to clean up their toys and place them in a toy bin. It can also be teaching them retrieval work such as fetching their food bowl or a bottle of water. It just depends how creative you get and how willing your dog is to learn. You will also need a lot of patience.
4. Play the Shell Game
This game is basically where you hide a treat or even just a piece of kibble under a cup. Use three cups and hide the treat under one and then shuffle them around and see if your dog can guess which cup the treat is under.
5. Learn a New Trick
Teaching your dog a new trick takes patience for you the owner and skill for your dog. This can be anything from a command they need to learn to something that’s just for fun. One that I am currently working on is “Sit Pretty” which takes time as my dog is still building up their core strength to hold the position longer than a few seconds.
6. Clean up Toys
This was briefly mentioned above with having your dog help with chores. It’s a great way for your dog to learn where to put toys that are theirs or where they can get their toys from so they don’t get into stuff that isn’t for them. Take it slow and make it lots of fun for your dog.
7. Work for Food
Making your dog work for food is great to implement a training session. I do this often with my dogs for either breakfast or dinner. They are always eager to please and it helps perfect some basic commands but also allows me to work on new things with them too. It’s a great way to keep your dog entertained and always wanting to work.
8. Play Tug
Playing tug of war can keep my dog entertained for long periods of time. I rarely play for more than 10-15 minute increments at a time though. It does sometimes rile them up which is why I keep it short for them. If you notice the tug toy starts to tear or break, be sure to toss it away and replace it with a new one.
What are dome other ways you keep your dog entertained while indoors? Let me know below in the comments.