I think we can all agree, that having a new puppy can be just as challenging as having a new baby! Dogs, and especially puppies, always need stimulation. It’s no secret that puppies are constantly on the move, and have an unbelievable amount of energy to burn! That means, if we don’t give them stuff to do, they’ll come up with activities of their own, and that’s when disaster happens!
“There is a growing acceptance among scientists that play is very, very important and the type and frequency of play are a really good indicator of a dog’s quality of life.” – Mark Evans, former RSPCA chief veterinarian
We as pet parents live very busy lives, with work, family and social commitments, meaning that having to leave your dog at home is inevitable. This shouldn’t have to be a problem, as there are many solutions to keep your dog busy and entertained.
See below for our top tips on keeping your dog busy:
Increase physical activity
Lack of daily physical activity is one of the most common reasons behind your dog’s destructive behaviour. Not enough exercise leads to too much energy, and nothing to do with it, meaning your dog will find their own ways to keep entertained, often resulting in destroyed furniture and chewed shoes! Do some research to find out how much exercise is recommended for your dogs breed, however as a general rule, the more exercise your dog does, the less likely he or she is to be destructive while your not home. If you can’t find the time to get them out for a walk in the morning, try fit in a quick game of tug or fetch!
Leave plenty of toys around
Toys are a household staple for pet parents, especially when there is a puppy in the house! There are many toys that are effective in keeping your pet occupied, and stimulating them for long periods of time. It can be overwhelming choosing the right toy for your dog, as there is such a large variety, from some and cuddly toys, to rubber frisbees and tennis balls. Find out what stimulates your dog and rotate between old and new toys to keep things interesting, that way they always have something to keep them busy! Check out our large range of toys here!
Let dogs watch television
You would be surprised, how much enjoyment your dog will get from watching television! Turn up the volume, and allow your dog to be easily entertained by the sights and the sounds. In addition, the mental stimulation will help to keep him or her away from mischief.
Allow your dog to view through a window or door
Peek-a-boo! All dogs love a good view, even those that aren’t quite the guard dogs! Try opening the blinds on a window in your house so your dog can sit down, get comfy and watch the world go by!
Give your dog a block of ice to play with
This one is particularly beneficial in summer
We can’t emphasise enough how beneficial food dispensing toys are for keeping dogs entertained for hours and hours on end! Try filling a food-dispensing toy such as a KONG with some of your dog's favourite treats or kibble! Start by adding in some smaller treats that fall out easier, to reinforce the excitement (and tastiness!) of this toy. As the dog learns how it all works, you can make things a little bit more challenging with larger treats, and even treat them by mixing in Peanut Butter!
HOT TIP: Freeze the food dispensing toy after stuffing with food in summer to add an extra challenge!
A busy dog is a happy dog! If you keep your four-legged friend with plenty of entertainment options while you’re out, you will reduce the chance of chewing, destructive behaviour, nuisance barking and anxiety. So get creative, plan ahead, and turn puppy misadventure into puppy fun!
We hope these tips help you keep your four-legged friend busy while you are at work! We would love to hear what does and doesn’t work for you!